Re: Matt. 6:10a/Lk. 11:2c (fwd)
- On Sun, 1 Mar 1998, Bob Schacht wrote:
> At 01:00 PM 2/28/98 -0600, Jeffrey Gibson wrote:Bob,
> >First, to say that the petition is a plea for God to usher in his kingdom
> >implies that, at the time the prayer was given, God was believed (by
> >Jesus, no less!) not yet to have done so, that the kingdom was in no sense
> >a present reality, and that there was some doubt about God's desire to
> >establish his sovereignty at all. But how then do we reconcile this with
> >the fact that Jesus, at all levels of the tradition, proclaims and is
> >certain that the kingdom has arrived? ...
> This is an interesting point, and with your other points you make enough of
> a case to merit attention.
> Meanwhile, I can't wait for you to get to Matt. 6:12//Luke 11:4--
> Mt6:12NRSV: And forgive us our debts ... debtors
> REB: Forgive us the wrong we have done... wronged us
> Lk11:4NRSV: And forgive us our sins ... indebted to us
> REB: And forgive us our sins ... done us wrong
> Could you unravel this for me? Sins? Debts? Wrongs? Trespasses? What do you
> construe Jesus to have said/mean here, if this does indeed go back to the
> historical Jesus?
I have to beg off an immediate reply to your questions here - or at least
to the one regarding how the "forgiveness" petition fits in with my
general thesis - because I haven't yet given any concerted thought to this
petition other than to wonder whether the way Luke sets it out (forgive us
... *since* we have forgiven ...) is more original than the Matthean
version (forgive ... *as* we forgive...). All I can say right now is that
I have an intuition that there is a link here with Jesus' declaration that
the essence of "Sonship" is found in a willingness to love the enemy, and
that therefore what is being asked of God is that he regard the community
which has indeed followed (or is willing to follow, so Matt.) the covenant
obligations given to them as faithful to his demands. In other words, I'm
not sure that it is a confession of sinfulness so much as it is a
declaration of intent to be faithful to the requirements of Sonship.
As to the debt/sins question, there needn't be a radical disjunction
between the two terms, since "debt" seems to have been a synonym for
"sins" (i.e., breach of covenant fidelity) in the Judaism of Jesus' day (so
Moore, Abrahams, and many others).
And whether the petition goes back to Jesus? I think it does. In any
case, you'll find a (I think) well thought out defense of this position
in Meier's _Marginal Jew_ Vol. 2, p. 355, though I can't agree
with how he interprets what Jesus meant by it.
But what does the rest of the list think?