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Re: Motivation of women in Mark 16 and Matthew 27

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  • K. Hanhart
    Yuri Kuchinski wrote: Karel, ... The tomb stories seem late. Yuri, I donot know Talley s book. Does Talley have a new approach (besides the classical one)
    Message 1 of 14 , Dec 28, 1998
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      Yuri Kuchinski wrote:

      Karel,
      > I'm familiar with various theories re chronology of Easter, of Shavuoth,
      > and of the Pentecost. A good source is Thomas Talley, THE ORIGINS OF THE
      > LITURGICAL YEAR. It is not clear if and when the Temple celebrations were
      > based on Pharisaic chronology. Sadduccee chronology was different, and the
      > Temple is generally believed to be under their control at the time of
      > Jesus....
      > The question of when and where exactly the Christians began to observe
      > Sunday as the Lord's Day is one of the most disputed questions. The answer
      > is not entirely clear.

      > This is true. But the Sadduccee and the Samaritain chronology was
      > different. They started the counting of the first day of Shavuoth from
      > Sunday, regardless of the lunar date. Then the last day, the 50th, also
      > falls on Sunday.
      The tomb stories seem late.

      Yuri,
      I donot know Talley's book. Does Talley have a new approach (besides the
      classical one) concerning the origin
      of the opened tomb narrative? Besides L. Schenke's theory of an original
      liturgical setting near Jesus' grave, that is.
      Following Loisy and C. Montefiore I read Mark's epilogue (15,42-16,8)
      as his own post-70 composition.
      Hence we both agree the opened tomb story is late. Paul doesnot know of
      such a story. The epilogue is, I think, a midrash on LXX Isa 22,16 and
      LXXIsa 33,16. For in the Septuagint "a tomb hewn from the rock" (22,16),
      a hapax, appears to be a metaphor for the temple to be destroyed. Mark
      may well pit Joseph of Arimatea, the councilor overagainst Peter as
      Isaiah pitted Somnas (Sebna) overagainst Eljakim. It is worth following
      this trial in the absence of another viable interpretation (except the
      classical, literal one).
      In this perspective the calendar question may be important. Let us
      leave Samaritan chronology aside for the moment. We both agree that the
      sabbath that in Mark 15,42 is about to begin, is Niesan 16; according to
      Pharisaic counting this is the first day of Shabuoth. We both agree that
      the "early morning" of Mark 16,2 is Niesan 17. According to the ancient
      priestly calendar (cf. Lv 23,11.15) THAT is the First day of Shabuoth
      (=Pentecost).
      Now is this difference accidental, or does Mark deliberately put these
      two dates in opposition with his negative portrayal of Joseph of
      Arimatea [litt. he comes from Rama}, he is a member of the council, he
      breaks the sabbath law and his very positibve account of the angel's
      message. The important question is WHEN and WHY was the official
      festival calendar for the harvest ritual in the temple changed from the
      priestly to the Pharisaic interpretation of Lv 23,11.15? During the
      reign of Queen Salome?, since the Pharisees had a preponerant influence
      at that time? Or the reign of the pro-Pharisaic Herod Agrippa I (40-44
      CE)? The latter seems more likely. He is praised in the Talmud and
      portrayed darkly in Acts 12. He had first appointed a Boethusian
      highpriest, - Boethusian highpriests favored the priestly calendar! -,
      and suddenly appointed thereafter a certain Matthias from the rivaling
      house of Annas. What is your explanation of these facts?
      It would lead us too far afield to explicate the midrash in a few
      lines.
      This calendar problem may well shed light on the question of the
      priority of Mark. Matthew times the rolling away of the stone AT THE
      ONSET OF NISAN 17 (cf his "LATE on the sabbath"- Gr. 'opse' definitely
      means "late! 28,1). So I am reading Gr. "tei epiphooskousei" as not
      referring to Sundaymorning, but metaphorically for the glorious
      beginning of the first day of the messianic harvest time. For the day
      begins in the evening when the first stars appear. In that case "eis
      mian sabbatoon (plur!)" would be Greek for "as the first day of [the 7
      weeks of] Shabuot was dawning" (metaphorically) Cf 1 Cor 16,2.8 - Paul
      wants the Corinthians to lay aside gifts only during these seven weeks,
      and not during 52 Sundays in a year). The "day after the Sabbath" that
      follows Pesach is according to Lv 23,11,15 the first day of Pentecost -
      it became our Easter Day. In other words, our "sunday" is not due to a
      miraculous moving of a gravestone, but is rooted in the ancient Judaic
      calendar of Shabuot that runs from Sunday to Sunday. According to the
      Hebrew calendar it is the day the harvest begins. Christians celebrated
      it as the beginning of the messianic harvest time, based on their faith
      in the risen Jesus, the "first fruit". So in Mt the "angel of the Lord"
      appears "like lightning" the moment Nisan 16 turns to Nisan 17; in the
      evening after the Sabbath". And the women actually see in a vision the
      angel rolling away the stone.
      Now does Matthew elaborate on and clarify the Markan story? Or vice
      versa - does Mark abbreviate Matthew? The Gr. participle "terountes"
      (of the guard in Mt) is also the technical term for "observing" a
      feastday. In that case it is their duty to hinder 'the observance of
      Nisan 17' as the beginning of the harvest of the resurrection, as the
      Christians were proclaiming it on the Day of Pentecost. Matthew' story
      is, it seems to me, highly ironic and more explicitly anti-Pharisaic
      than Mark is. Together with the highpriests they 'worry' about the
      prophecy that Jesus will rise "after three days" (27,64). One factor
      favoring Markan priorituy is that in 27,54 Matthew uses the Markan term
      "after three days" in stead of his usual "on the third day". A second
      argument in favor of Markan priority is, as I stated before, that the
      woman do have a motive for going to the grave, while in Matthew they
      only go to see the grave.
      These calendrical problems, which seem to be so insignificant, would
      become highly relevant if indeed Herod Agrippa had the official
      calendar changed for religio/political reasons in opposition to Peter
      and the apostles who kept proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus on the
      Temple square and perhaps opposed his policies as well.
      Greetings, Karel
    • Yuri Kuchinsky
      ... Hi, Karel, I think this is the best recent source for understanding the ancient Christian calendar. I m very impressed with his research, and planning to
      Message 2 of 14 , Jan 2, 1999
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        On Tue, 29 Dec 1998, K. Hanhart wrote:
        > Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:

        > > The question of when and where exactly the Christians began to observe
        > > Sunday as the Lord's Day is one of the most disputed questions. The answer
        > > is not entirely clear.
        >
        > > This is true. But the Sadduccee and the Samaritain chronology was
        > > different. They started the counting of the first day of Shavuoth from
        > > Sunday, regardless of the lunar date. Then the last day, the 50th, also
        > > falls on Sunday.
        > The tomb stories seem late.
        >
        > Yuri, I do not know Talley's book.

        Hi, Karel,

        I think this is the best recent source for understanding the ancient
        Christian calendar. I'm very impressed with his research, and planning to
        prepare a review at some point.

        > Does Talley have a new approach
        > (besides the classical one) concerning the origin of the opened tomb
        > narrative? Besides L. Schenke's theory of an original liturgical
        > setting near Jesus' grave, that is.

        He does not deal with this. He's focusing primarily on chronology in the
        gospels and in historical sources.

        > Following Loisy and C. Montefiore I read Mark's epilogue
        > (15,42-16,8) as his own post-70 composition.

        This is possible.

        > Hence we both agree the opened tomb story is late.

        Yes. But I think everything to do with tomb stories is rather late. Tomb
        stories are based on a materialistic understanding of resurrection. But I
        think the earliest understanding of resurrection was spiritual and
        Adoptionist.

        > Paul doesnot know of such a story. The epilogue is, I think, a midrash
        > on LXX Isa 22,16 and LXXIsa 33,16. For in the Septuagint "a tomb hewn
        > from the rock" (22,16), a hapax, appears to be a metaphor for the
        > temple to be destroyed. Mark may well pit Joseph of Arimatea, the
        > councilor over against Peter

        I really don't see why would Mark do this, or how he does this. Perhaps
        you can clarify.

        > as Isaiah pitted Somnas (Sebna) overagainst Eljakim. It is worth
        > following this trial in the absence of another viable interpretation
        > (except the classical, literal one).

        The logical interpretation seems to be that Joseph of A had to be found to
        make the tomb burial story (remotely) possible. How else could they get
        the body from the authorities?

        I'm not sure if the parallel with the displacing of Shebna, and the
        promotion of Eliakim in Isaiah 22:15-25 will work here.

        > In this perspective the calendar question may be important.

        Sure is.

        > Let us leave Samaritan chronology aside for the moment. We both agree
        > that the sabbath that in Mark 15,42 is about to begin, is Niesan 16;

        Not really. In my view, the earliest chronology was quartodeciman. This
        means 14th Nissan crucifixion.

        > according to Pharisaic counting this is the first day of Shabuoth. We
        > both agree that the "early morning" of Mark 16,2 is Niesan 17.

        Yes, the earliest version of the empty tomb story would have been on 14th
        + 3 days = 17th. But later different versions were also tried.

        > According to the ancient priestly calendar (cf. Lv 23,11.15) THAT is
        > the First day of Shabuoth (=Pentecost).

        The Sadduccee first day of Shabuoth was not fixed according to the lunar
        calendar. It was celebrated from the first Sunday after Passover, this
        falling on a variety of possible dates, to the Sunday 50 days later.

        > Now is this difference accidental, or does Mark deliberately put
        > these two dates in opposition with his negative portrayal of Joseph of
        > Arimatea [litt. he comes from Rama}, he is a member of the council, he
        > breaks the sabbath law and his very positibve account of the angel's
        > message.

        All of the above seems to be predicated on premises that are not very
        certain. So I will not comment pending your clarification of some other
        issues I've pointed out.

        > The important question is WHEN and WHY was the official festival
        > calendar for the harvest ritual in the temple changed from the
        > priestly to the Pharisaic interpretation of Lv 23,11.15?

        But how do we know it was changed? How do our texts reflect the Temple
        rituals in the 1st c?

        > During the reign of Queen Salome?, since the Pharisees had a
        > preponerant influence at that time? Or the reign of the pro-Pharisaic
        > Herod Agrippa I (40-44 CE)? The latter seems more likely. He is
        > praised in the Talmud and portrayed darkly in Acts 12. He had first
        > appointed a Boethusian highpriest, - Boethusian highpriests favored
        > the priestly calendar! -, and suddenly appointed thereafter a certain
        > Matthias from the rivaling house of Annas. What is your explanation of
        > these facts?

        Your questions are predicated on the assumption that the Temple calendar
        was changed. But I don't see a good basis for this.

        The rest of your post seems to depend on the above points you've outlined.
        So there are problems there for me. I will wait for your clarifications
        before commenting in detail.

        > It would lead us too far afield to explicate the midrash in a
        > few lines.
        > This calendar problem may well shed light on the question of the
        > priority of Mark. Matthew times the rolling away of the stone AT THE
        > ONSET OF NISAN 17 (cf his "LATE on the sabbath"- Gr. 'opse' definitely
        > means "late! 28,1). So I am reading Gr. "tei epiphooskousei" as not
        > referring to Sunday morning, but metaphorically for the glorious
        > beginning of the first day of the messianic harvest time. For the day
        > begins in the evening when the first stars appear. In that case "eis
        > mian sabbatoon (plur!)" would be Greek for "as the first day of [the 7
        > weeks of] Shabuot was dawning" (metaphorically)

        I'm quite pessimistic that analysis of the endings of the gospels can
        provide many valid insights about the priority of any gospel. This is
        because I believe that the endings (as well as the beginnings) were the
        most heavily edited and changed parts of the gospels.

        > Cf 1 Cor 16,2.8 - Paul wants the Corinthians to lay aside gifts only
        > during these seven weeks, and not during 52 Sundays in a year).

        I don't quite see how this is derived from this text.

        > The "day after the Sabbath" that follows Pesach is according to Lv
        > 23,11,15 the first day of Pentecost - it became our Easter Day.

        Yes, eventually. But originally the Easter Day was the same as the Jewish
        Passover.

        > In other words, our "sunday" is not due to a miraculous moving of a
        > gravestone, but is rooted in the ancient Judaic calendar of Shabuot
        > that runs from Sunday to Sunday.

        Yes, this makes sense. Also Talley would agree with this.

        > According to the Hebrew calendar it is the day the harvest begins.
        > Christians celebrated it as the beginning of the messianic harvest
        > time, based on their faith in the risen Jesus, the "first fruit". So
        > in Mt the "angel of the Lord" appears "like lightning" the moment
        > Nisan 16 turns to Nisan 17; in the evening after the Sabbath". And the
        > women actually see in a vision the angel rolling away the stone.

        I think it is quite significant that the women are the first witnesses of
        the resurrection in Mt.

        > Now does Matthew elaborate on and clarify the Markan story? Or
        > vice versa - does Mark abbreviate Matthew?

        As already noted above, I think Passion narratives are in a class by
        themselves. They are the most elaborated and edited. I don't think it's
        possible to find many clues to the solution of the Synoptic problem there.

        > The Gr. participle "terountes" (of the guard in Mt) is also the
        > technical term for "observing" a feast day. In that case it is their
        > duty to hinder 'the observance of Nisan 17' as the beginning of the
        > harvest of the resurrection, as the Christians were proclaiming it on
        > the Day of Pentecost.

        Whose duty is to "hinder"? I don't quite understand.

        > Matthew' story is, it seems to me, highly ironic and more explicitly
        > anti-Pharisaic than Mark is. Together with the high priests they
        > 'worry' about the prophecy that Jesus will rise "after three days"
        > (27,64). One factor favoring Markan priorituy is that in 27,54 Matthew
        > uses the Markan term "after three days" in stead of his usual "on the
        > third day". A second argument in favor of Markan priority is, as I
        > stated before, that the woman do have a motive for going to the grave,
        > while in Matthew they only go to see the grave.

        Maybe so.

        > These calendrical problems, which seem to be so insignificant,

        They are very significant.

        > would become highly relevant if indeed Herod Agrippa had the official
        > calendar changed for religio/political reasons in opposition to Peter
        > and the apostles who kept proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus on the
        > Temple square and perhaps opposed his policies as well.

        I don't think Peter and friends were in any position to influence how and
        when Temple ceremonies were observed. They were not so influential.

        Best regards,

        Yuri.

        Yuri Kuchinsky || Toronto

        http://www.trends.net/~yuku/bbl/bbl.htm

        The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
        equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
      • K. Hanhart
        ... Hello Yuri, My question concerning Talley s view on the origin of the opened tomb story (not empty tomb ) is directly related to the understanding of
        Message 3 of 14 , Jan 10, 1999
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          Yuri Kuchinsky wrote [Jan 3, 1999]:

          > Hi, Karel,
          >
          > I think this [ book by Talley ] is the best recent source for understanding the ancient
          > Christian calendar. I'm very impressed with his research, and planning to
          > prepare a review at some point.

          Hello Yuri,

          My question concerning Talley's view on the "origin" of the opened tomb
          story (not 'empty tomb') is directly related to the understanding of the
          ancient christian calendar. You [rightly] say these tomb stories are
          late. That is: these climactic Gospel stories are post-70. In fact, as I
          maintain in my book The Open Tomb, John Mark rewrote an earlier Gospel
          after the trauma of 70, a christian Passover hagada, that formerly ended
          with a version of the Transfiguration story as an apotheosis. He now
          placed the latter in the center of this second edition within the
          'sandwich' of a reference to 70 in 9,1 and a baffled question what
          resurrection might mean under these new circumstances (9, 10).
          But the question is not what WE think happened, - tomb stories are late
          - but what Mark wanted to tell his post-70 readers in this new epilogue
          to his Gospel about the frustrated attempt to bury "the body of Jesus"
          after Pilate had presented Joseph with the "corpse"(15,45). This new
          ending might (1) be a midrasj on LXX Isa 22,16 which Mark was literally
          citing ["a tomb hewn from the rock" or (2) reflect an early oral
          tradition that women did discover Jesus' grave to be empty - with the
          conclusion that a. the grave was robbed and the women were fooled or b.
          an angel had indeed rolled the stone away. In case (2) we have a solid
          argument for the celebration of Easter on SUNDAY because all four
          Gospels date their tombstory on a Sunday and all four would in that case
          imply a divine intervention into the laws of nature. However, I don't
          believe the evangelists took the open tomb story literally. Rather Mt,
          Lc, and Jn built on Mark's midrasj. In case (1) we must look for the
          origin of Easter-'sunday' in the calendar of the Torah which John Mark
          adhered to. For we are dealing with the first day of the harvest
          according to Lv 23,11.15.
          I donot see a third option for the origin of Sunday worship. For the
          early confession "raised on the third day according to the scriptures"
          does not mention that the third day was a Sunday. The "scriptures" to
          which Paul refers is according to Clemens of Alexandria Lv 23,11.55 -
          re. "first fruit" and the feast of Shabuot. And as I read Lv 23,11 "the
          day after the Sabbath, means a Sunday which is according to the ancient
          priestly calendar.

          Following Loisy and C. Montefiore I read Mark's epilogue (15,42-16,8)
          as his own post-70 composition, a midrash on LXX Isa 22,16 and LXXIsa
          33,16. For in the Septuagint "a tomb hewn from the rock" (22,16), a
          hapax, appears to be a metaphor for the temple to be destroyed. Mark may
          well pit Joseph of Arimatea, the councilor over against Peter.

          Yuri wrote:
          > I really don't see why would Mark do this, or how he does this. Perhaps
          > you can clarify.

          Time and space prevent me from excerpting some 300 pages of my book.
          You may believe me that Isa 22 and 33 both are placed in the context of
          Jerusalem under the threat of an invading foreign army - both are
          dealing with a sinful person(s) within the walls of the city. The
          passages in Isaiah have especially the destruction of the first Temple
          in mind by the Babylonians. Just as Isaiah pitted Somnas (Sebna), the
          wicked one, overagainst the righteous Eljakim (Isa 22 15-25) so the
          wicked Joseph, the councillor, is pitted against Peter, the last person
          named in Mark's Gospel, as the leading apostle who must now continue to
          follow the risen Messiah ("tell it to Peter").

          > I'm not sure if the parallel with the displacing of Shebna and the promotion of Eljakim (Isa 22,15-25) will > work here.

          One must also take into account LXX Isa 33. Esp. vs 10 must have made
          an impression on Mark who tried to find an answer to the debacle of 70.

          As I see it, in STORY time the women see in a horrifying vision
          (anablepsasai) ± forty HOURS after Jesus' death what happened in REAL
          time ± 40 YEARS later, the destruction of the Temple : See the Place =
          topos= Hebr Maqom - Zion, just as in LXX Isa 32,9 the women receive a
          vision of the future with terror ànd with hope. In my lengthy exegesis
          of Isa 22,16 the expression "tomb hewn from the rock" is a metaphor of
          the temple to be destroyed. In Mark Joseph who broke the Sabbath in
          'bying' linen, a member of the Sanhedrin, is like Shebna the wicked one.
          This exegesis would fit in with Mark's anti-Pharisaism. For according to
          the Pharisaic interpretation of Lv 23,11.15 the first day of the fifty
          days of Pentecost is not a Sunday, but Nisan 16 no matter what day of
          the week this falls. As I wrote you earlier, I believe, that the
          official calendar in the temple was deliberately altered under king
          Herod Agrippa (40-44), who favored the Pharisees, in order to thwart the
          Jesus movement under the leadership of Peter who kept preaching Jesus'
          resurrection on the First Day of Pentecost, the (Messianic) harvest to
          the gathered pilgrims who had come to Jerusalem to celebrate Pesach. The
          first and the fiftieth day was before Agrippa always a Sunday. He
          changed the priestly calendar. If this change in the festival calendar
          under Agrippa is true, it would in turn explain why Mark strangely
          writes about a 'conspiracy' by the Pharisees to 'kill Jesus' together
          with the Herodians (3,6). It would foreshadow the persecution under
          Herod (!) Agrippa (Acts 12 ,1ff.). In my view then, Joseph, "coming from
          Rama" (15,43), a representative of the priesthood favoring the
          Pharisees, tries in vain at the onset of the Sabbath, Nisan 16 (!) to
          "bury the body of Jesus". With his petition for the "body of Jesus" Mark
          is referring to the Pauline term for the ecclesia, "the boddy of
          Christ". Joseph fails in his attempt at "burying the body" and thus
          silencing Jesus' voice forever. What he gets is merely the "corpse"
          [ptoma] from Pilate. In stead of this vain attempt, on the true day of
          the (Messianic) harvest (according to Mark), the women, seeing in fear
          and trembling the vision of the future, hear the angel's gospel: that
          the risen Jesus is no longer to be found in the "maqom = the "place -
          topos = Zion, that is now destroyed ("behold the Place). The living
          Jesus "is not here"; he is going ahead of his disciples into the Galil
          of the nations.
          Finally, re. the Quartodeciman question. Irenaeus is quite clear
          stating that in the early days VARIOUS calculations were used for
          determining the celebration of the christian "pascha". However, all of
          them took Nisan 14, the day explicitly mentioned in the Torah for the
          killing of the Passover lamb as their anchorpoint, hence quartodeciman
          (=Latin for 14). Some followed the now official Pharisaic dating of
          Nisan 16 as the first day of the (Messianic) harvest, others followed
          the ancient priestly calendar in used before Herod Agrippa.
          The Matthean version can best be explained as a commentary on
          Mark's complex midrash and fortifies the above view. "On this Rock
          (Peter) I will build the ecclesia" ( and not on Joseph, whoever he was).
          Peter, much like Eljakim, receives the key." I referred already to the
          story of the guards, who become like dead men at the very moment Nisan
          16 (Pharisaic date) turns to "the day after the sabbath" of Lv 23,11.
          For 'opse' means late on the Sabbath.
          I realize these remarks are much too brief and sketchy for following
          the argument. But I am ready to clarify a specific detail. I discussed
          these at length in my work. It was designed to find the roots of (later)
          christian anti-Judaism that poisoned the tradition of a Gentile church
          who drifted away from its Judaic roots.
          I am curious to know what you mean by "Quartodeciman"; the link with
          Pesach and Shabuoth is clearly there.

          Yuri wrote:
          > your questions are predicated on the assumption that the Temple calendar
          > was changed. But I don't see a good basis for this.

          Answer: it is generally recognized that the Pharisaic dating replaced
          the ancient priestly one. See e.g. J. van Goudoever, Biblical Calendars,
          Leiden.

          Best regards,

          Karel
        • Yuri Kuchinsky
          ... I m glad we agree, Karel. ... This is what I think too. ... Good point. ... I vote for (1) as probable. Also (2b) is probable. I doubt that (2a) was the
          Message 4 of 14 , Jan 19, 1999
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            On Sun, 10 Jan 1999, K. Hanhart wrote:

            > My question concerning Talley's view on the "origin" of the
            > opened tomb story (not 'empty tomb') is directly related to the
            > understanding of the ancient christian calendar. You [rightly] say
            > these tomb stories are late. That is: these climactic Gospel stories
            > are post-70.

            I'm glad we agree, Karel.

            > In fact, as I maintain in my book The Open Tomb, John Mark rewrote an
            > earlier Gospel after the trauma of 70, a christian Passover hagada,
            > that formerly ended with a version of the Transfiguration story as an
            > apotheosis.

            This is what I think too.

            > He now placed the latter in the center of this second edition within
            > the 'sandwich' of a reference to 70 in 9,1 and a baffled question what
            > resurrection might mean under these new circumstances (9, 10).

            Good point.

            > But the question is not what WE think happened, - tomb stories
            > are late - but what Mark wanted to tell his post-70 readers in this
            > new epilogue to his Gospel about the frustrated attempt to bury "the
            > body of Jesus" after Pilate had presented Joseph with the
            > "corpse"(15,45). This new ending might (1) be a midrasj on LXX Isa
            > 22,16 which Mark was literally citing ["a tomb hewn from the rock" or
            > (2) reflect an early oral tradition that women did discover Jesus'
            > grave to be empty - with the conclusion that a. the grave was robbed
            > and the women were fooled or b. an angel had indeed rolled the stone
            > away.

            I vote for (1) as probable. Also (2b) is probable. I doubt that (2a) was
            the intention of the writer of Mk. The reason why women were supposed to
            witness the resurrection first is perhaps because this represents yet
            another barb for the original disciples who are not viewed positively in
            Mk.

            > In case (2) we have a solid argument for the celebration of
            > Easter on SUNDAY

            But I'm pretty sure Sunday was already observed before 70. We don't need
            to look for the origin of this in the tomb stories.

            > because all four Gospels date their tombstory on a Sunday

            Yes, but which versions? Did protoMk do this? I doubt it had a tomb story.

            > and all four would in that case imply a divine intervention into the
            > laws of nature.

            In late versions, yes.

            > However, I don't believe the evangelists took the open tomb story
            > literally. Rather Mt, Lc, and Jn built on Mark's midrasj.

            Now, that's an interesting idea.

            > In case (1) we must look for the origin of Easter-'sunday' in the
            > calendar of the Torah which John Mark adhered to. For we are dealing
            > with the first day of the harvest according to Lv 23,11.15.

            Yes, I agree.

            > I donot see a third option for the origin of Sunday worship.

            Yes, my best guess is that it was connected with the early observance of
            the Pentecost/Shavuoth Sundays -- the first and the last. But I should
            caution that this is a highly disputed area.

            > For the early confession "raised on the third day according to the
            > scriptures" does not mention that the third day was a Sunday.

            The problem is that we don't really know when this was inserted -- I
            happen to believe this was not originally written by Paul. But this does
            sound like it could have been an early modified quartodeciman confession,
            and thus quite early.

            > The "scriptures" to which Paul refers is according to Clemens of
            > Alexandria Lv 23,11.55 - re. "first fruit" and the feast of Shabuot.
            > And as I read Lv 23,11 "the day after the Sabbath, means a Sunday
            > which is according to the ancient priestly calendar.

            This may be so.

            > Following Loisy and C. Montefiore I read Mark's epilogue
            > (15,42-16,8) as his own post-70 composition, a midrash on LXX Isa
            > 22,16 and LXXIsa 33,16. For in the Septuagint "a tomb hewn from the
            > rock" (22,16), a hapax, appears to be a metaphor for the temple to be
            > destroyed. Mark may well pit Joseph of Arimatea, the councilor over
            > against Peter.

            Yes, this is likely.

            > Yuri wrote:
            > > I really don't see why would Mark do this, or how he does this. Perhaps
            > > you can clarify.
            >
            > Time and space prevent me from excerpting some 300 pages of my
            > book. You may believe me that Isa 22 and 33 both are placed in the
            > context of Jerusalem under the threat of an invading foreign army -
            > both are dealing with a sinful person(s) within the walls of the city.
            > The passages in Isaiah have especially the destruction of the first
            > Temple in mind by the Babylonians. Just as Isaiah pitted Somnas
            > (Sebna), the wicked one, overagainst the righteous Eljakim (Isa 22
            > 15-25) so the wicked Joseph, the councillor, is pitted against Peter,
            > the last person named in Mark's Gospel, as the leading apostle who
            > must now continue to follow the risen Messiah ("tell it to Peter").

            Well, there may be a problem here. I don't see that Joseph is portrayed as
            wicked. And we know that Peter is criticised heavily in Mk.

            Why are Peter and the original disciples not viewed positively in Mk? My
            vote: they were seen as heretical by the Gentile/Pauline oriented writer
            of Mk.

            > > I'm not sure if the parallel with the displacing of Shebna and the
            > > promotion of Eljakim (Isa 22,15-25) will work here.

            > One must also take into account LXX Isa 33. Esp. vs 10 must have
            > made an impression on Mark who tried to find an answer to the debacle
            > of 70.
            >
            > As I see it, in STORY time the women see in a horrifying vision
            > (anablepsasai) ± forty HOURS after Jesus' death what happened in REAL
            > time ± 40 YEARS later, the destruction of the Temple : See the Place =
            > topos= Hebr Maqom - Zion, just as in LXX Isa 32,9 the women receive a
            > vision of the future with terror ànd with hope.

            But here the women are criticized.

            > In my lengthy exegesis of Isa 22,16 the expression "tomb hewn from the
            > rock" is a metaphor of the temple to be destroyed. In Mark Joseph who
            > broke the Sabbath in 'bying' linen, a member of the Sanhedrin, is like
            > Shebna the wicked one.

            I really don't see Joseph being portrayed as wicked. I think he's actually
            portrayed in a very positive light -- much more positively that the
            original disciples who all run away. (Mk and other gospellers accept that
            they ran away. I think these accounts probably reflect the facts of
            history.)

            > This exegesis would fit in with Mark's anti-Pharisaism. For according
            > to the Pharisaic interpretation of Lv 23,11.15 the first day of the
            > fifty days of Pentecost is not a Sunday, but Nisan 16 no matter what
            > day of the week this falls.

            Agreed.

            > As I wrote you earlier, I believe, that the official calendar in the
            > temple was deliberately altered under king Herod Agrippa (40-44), who
            > favored the Pharisees,

            Now, this is the important question, isn't it?

            > in order to thwart the Jesus movement under the leadership of Peter
            > who kept preaching Jesus' resurrection on the First Day of Pentecost,
            > the (Messianic) harvest to the gathered pilgrims who had come to
            > Jerusalem to celebrate Pesach.

            I don't think the movement was very influential ca 40-44, and I don't
            think Peter was preaching in public in Jerusalem around that time. In
            Jerusalem, it was most likely private proselytizing at the early stage,
            after Stephen was martyred. Read Loisy about this.

            > The first and the fiftieth day was before Agrippa always a Sunday. He
            > changed the priestly calendar.

            But how sure are we of this?

            > If this change in the festival calendar under Agrippa is true, it
            > would in turn explain why Mark strangely writes about a 'conspiracy'
            > by the Pharisees to 'kill Jesus' together with the Herodians (3,6). It
            > would foreshadow the persecution under Herod (!) Agrippa (Acts 12
            > ,1ff.). In my view then, Joseph, "coming from Rama" (15,43), a
            > representative of the priesthood favoring the Pharisees, tries in vain
            > at the onset of the Sabbath, Nisan 16 (!) to "bury the body of Jesus".
            > With his petition for the "body of Jesus" Mark is referring to the
            > Pauline term for the ecclesia, "the boddy of Christ". Joseph fails in
            > his attempt at "burying the body" and thus silencing Jesus' voice
            > forever.

            But he doesn't fail in burying the body. He buries it "according to the
            Scriptures" (from Mark's perspective).

            > What he gets is merely the "corpse" [ptoma] from Pilate. In stead of
            > this vain attempt, on the true day of the (Messianic) harvest
            > (according to Mark),

            But which version of Mk. ProtoMk? I don't think so.

            > the women, seeing in fear and trembling the vision of the future, hear
            > the angel's gospel: that the risen Jesus is no longer to be found in
            > the "maqom = the "place - topos = Zion, that is now destroyed ("behold
            > the Place). The living Jesus "is not here"; he is going ahead of his
            > disciples into the Galil of the nations.

            So this is a secondary version of Mk?

            > Finally, re. the Quartodeciman question. Irenaeus is quite clear
            > stating that in the early days VARIOUS calculations were used for
            > determining the celebration of the christian "pascha".

            Sure they were -- before him. This is accurate.

            > However, all of them took Nisan 14, the day explicitly mentioned in
            > the Torah for the killing of the Passover lamb as their anchorpoint,
            > hence quartodeciman (=Latin for 14).

            Yes, this is what quartodecimans all did, and Irenaeus generally favoured
            quartodecimans.

            > Some followed the now official Pharisaic dating of Nisan 16 as the
            > first day of the (Messianic) harvest, others followed the ancient
            > priestly calendar in used before Herod Agrippa.

            Yes, this was the earliest Christian version of chronology in my view.

            > The Matthean version can best be explained as a commentary on
            > Mark's complex midrash and fortifies the above view. "On this Rock
            > (Peter) I will build the ecclesia" ( and not on Joseph, whoever he
            > was). Peter, much like Eljakim, receives the key." I referred already
            > to the story of the guards, who become like dead men at the very
            > moment Nisan 16 (Pharisaic date) turns to "the day after the sabbath"
            > of Lv 23,11. For 'opse' means late on the Sabbath.

            I note here that the Passion narrative in Mk, or parts of it, may well
            have been written based on Mt. The directionality here is far from clear.

            > I realize these remarks are much too brief and sketchy for
            > following the argument. But I am ready to clarify a specific detail. I
            > discussed these at length in my work. It was designed to find the
            > roots of (later) christian anti-Judaism that poisoned the tradition of
            > a Gentile church who drifted away from its Judaic roots.

            The roots of anti-Judaism are many, and some of them are pretty clear. For
            one, early Jewish-Christians, or Ebionites, were all seen as heretical by
            the proto-Catholics who were Gentile-oriented to a significant extent. And
            again, anti-Judaism was already prevalent in Hellenistic and Roman
            societies even before Jesus came about. And so on.

            > I am curious to know what you mean by "Quartodeciman"; the link with
            > Pesach and Shabuoth is clearly there.

            I believe that all earliest Christians, including Paul, were
            quartodeciman. This also seems to be the earliest stratum of all four
            gospels (and the prevailing chronology of Jn; in this sense Jn preserved
            this early tradition best).

            > Yuri wrote:
            > > your questions are predicated on the assumption that the Temple calendar
            > > was changed. But I don't see a good basis for this.
            >
            > Answer: it is generally recognized that the Pharisaic dating replaced
            > the ancient priestly one. See e.g. J. van Goudoever, Biblical
            > Calendars, Leiden.

            But when? I've read Goudoever a while back, and like it, but I don't
            remember what was his evidence exactly. Perhaps you can give me the ref
            for where he discusses it?

            Best wishes,

            Yuri.

            Yuri Kuchinsky || Toronto

            http://www.trends.net/~yuku/bbl/bbl.htm

            The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
            equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
          • achillesz@usa.net
            Greetings, I have so far only lurked on this list, and will return to lurking after this post, but I have a question to put to you all. What are your opinions
            Message 5 of 14 , Jan 27, 1999
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              Greetings,

              I have so far only lurked on this list, and will return to lurking after this
              post, but I have a question to put to you all. What are your opinions on the
              authenticity of Mark 16:9ff?

              It was my understanding that this passage was universally rejected, but I have
              come across some who claim authenticity for it. I seem to remember some posters
              here implying that they agreed with that, though I might have misunderstood.

              This is probably old hat, but would anyone take a moment to enlighten me as to
              the consensus of scholars on this at present, if there is one?

              How damaging to claims of authenticity for this passage do you think the use of
              "prote sabbaton" instead of "te mia sabbaton" is, for instance? The catholic
              encyclopedia online informs me that in these 12 verses are found at least 17
              words of phrases which are used nowhere else in Mark. Is this a good argument
              against it's authenticity?

              Thanks and regards,


              /Achilles achillesz@...

              All rights reserved.

              Random thought for the moment:

              A formalist is someone who cannot understand a theory unless it is
              meaningless.
              -- S. Gorn's Compendium of Rarely Used Cliches
            • Julian Waterfield
              I always found it interesting that the long ending to Mk has one story from each of the other Gospels and Acts summarised. ... From: achillesz@usa.net
              Message 6 of 14 , Jan 27, 1999
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                I always found it interesting that the long ending to Mk has one story from
                each of the other Gospels and Acts summarised.
                -----Original Message-----
                From: achillesz@... <achillesz@...>
                To: Synoptic-L@... <Synoptic-L@...>
                Date: 27 January 1999 18:58 PM
                Subject: Ending of Mark?


                Greetings,

                I have so far only lurked on this list, and will return to lurking after
                this
                post, but I have a question to put to you all. What are your opinions on the
                authenticity of Mark 16:9ff?

                It was my understanding that this passage was universally rejected, but I
                have
                come across some who claim authenticity for it. I seem to remember some
                posters
                here implying that they agreed with that, though I might have misunderstood.

                This is probably old hat, but would anyone take a moment to enlighten me as
                to
                the consensus of scholars on this at present, if there is one?

                How damaging to claims of authenticity for this passage do you think the use
                of
                "prote sabbaton" instead of "te mia sabbaton" is, for instance? The catholic
                encyclopedia online informs me that in these 12 verses are found at least 17
                words of phrases which are used nowhere else in Mark. Is this a good
                argument
                against it's authenticity?

                Thanks and regards,


                /Achilles achillesz@...

                All rights reserved.

                Random thought for the moment:

                A formalist is someone who cannot understand a theory unless it is
                meaningless.
                -- S. Gorn's Compendium of Rarely Used Cliches
              • Brian E. Wilson
                /Achilles wrote - ... I think this question, although very interesting, is one for a text criticism list rather than for Synoptic-L. My own text-critical view
                Message 7 of 14 , Jan 27, 1999
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                  /Achilles wrote -
                  >
                  >I have so far only lurked on this list, and will return to lurking
                  >after this post, but I have a question to put to you all. What are your
                  >opinions on the authenticity of Mark 16:9ff?
                  >
                  I think this question, although very interesting, is one for a text
                  criticism list rather than for Synoptic-L. My own text-critical view is
                  that what W. R. Farmer called "The Last Twelve Verses of Mark" in his
                  book with this title, were not part of the text of autograph of the
                  Gospel of Mark.

                  The interesting follow-up question, however, is whether if Mk 16.9ff was
                  not part of the original text of Mark, then how did the Gospel of Mark
                  end? Did it end "in the middle of a sentence" at the end of Mk 16.8? Or
                  has the original ending (not Mk 16.9ff) been lost?

                  I find current arguments that Mark ended "abruptly" at Mk 16.8
                  artificial and unconvincing. I think the original ending to Mark has
                  been lost, but most of its wording is probably lurking within the ending
                  of the Gospel of Matthew.

                  I would go along with the hypothesis that all of the synoptic gospels
                  were originally written on codices, and that the last page of Mark may
                  have fallen off. (The end of a roll would not be likely to be damaged in
                  the same way, because the end of a roll would be protected by the rest
                  coiled around it.) All extant papyrus manuscripts of the synoptic
                  gospels were written on codices.

                  Best wishes,
                  BRIAN WILSON

                  E-MAIL : brian@... *** HOMEPAGE RECENTLY UPDATED ***
                  SNAILMAIL ; Rev B. E. Wilson, http://www.twonh.demon.co.uk
                  10 York Close, Godmanchester,
                  Huntingdon, Cambs, PE18 8EB, UK
                • Yuri Kuchinsky
                  ... Agreed, Brian. ... Not lost -- but rather hidden away! ... I d say, lurking in the Apoc Peter. In my view, the Transfiguration scene in Mk was originally
                  Message 8 of 14 , Jan 29, 1999
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                    On Wed, 27 Jan 1999, Brian E. Wilson wrote:

                    > The interesting follow-up question, however, is whether if Mk 16.9ff
                    > was not part of the original text of Mark, then how did the Gospel of
                    > Mark end? Did it end "in the middle of a sentence" at the end of Mk
                    > 16.8? Or has the original ending (not Mk 16.9ff) been lost?
                    >
                    > I find current arguments that Mark ended "abruptly" at Mk 16.8
                    > artificial and unconvincing.

                    Agreed, Brian.

                    > I think the original ending to Mark has been lost,

                    Not lost -- but rather hidden away!

                    > but most of its wording is probably lurking within the ending of the
                    > Gospel of Matthew.

                    I'd say, lurking in the Apoc Peter.

                    In my view, the Transfiguration scene in Mk was originally part of the
                    ending of Mk. Later it was predated into the life of HJ.

                    The Apoc. Peter, with its Transfiguration-like scene _after_ the
                    Crucifixion seems to be a good lead to how earliest Mk's ending may have
                    looked.

                    So a later editor of Mk may have taken this event from its original
                    post-Crucifixion context, preserved better in Apoc. Peter, and placed it
                    into the life of the historical Jesus. Why? Because such a
                    post-Crucifixion Tranfiguration event would have been connected too
                    closely with the concept of the spritiual Resurrection (vs. the
                    materialistic bodily Resurrection that became the accepted part of faith
                    later).

                    Also, the Ascension scene in Acts looks suspiciously like the carbon copy
                    of the Transfiguration in Mk. If they are at bottom one and the same
                    event, then the Acts, like the Apoc Peter, also will have preserved better
                    the earliest context of such a post-Crucifixion event, which it
                    transformed into the Ascension scene.

                    Best wishes,

                    Yuri.

                    Yuri Kuchinsky || Toronto

                    http://www.trends.net/~yuku/bbl/bbl.htm

                    The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
                    equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
                  • David C. Hindley
                    Message text written by Yuri Kuchinsky ... Crucifixion seems to be a good lead to how earliest Mk s ending may have looked.
                    Message 9 of 14 , Jan 29, 1999
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                      Message text written by Yuri Kuchinsky

                      >The Apoc. Peter, with its Transfiguration-like scene _after_ the
                      Crucifixion seems to be a good lead to how earliest Mk's ending may have
                      looked.<

                      Very interesting! Perhaps your observation lends itself to the theories
                      that canonical Mark is some sort of stripped down version of a previous
                      Gospel.

                      Dave H
                    • K. Hanhart
                      ... Dear Yuri, Unfortunately I haven t got the time to answer all your questions. But let me reply to the last one and thus correct a possible
                      Message 10 of 14 , Jan 31, 1999
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                        >
                        > > Yuri Kuchinski wrote Jan 19:

                        > > > your questions are predicated on the assumption that the Temple calendar
                        > > > was changed. But I don't see a good basis for this.
                        > >
                        > > Answer: it is generally recognized that the Pharisaic dating replaced
                        > > the ancient priestly one. See e.g. J. van Goudoever, Biblical
                        > > Calendars, Leiden.
                        >
                        > But when? I've read Goudoever a while back, and like it, but I don't
                        > remember what was his evidence exactly. Perhaps you can give me the ref...

                        Dear Yuri,

                        Unfortunately I haven't got the time to answer all your questions. But
                        let me reply to the last one and thus correct a possible
                        misunderstanding. Jan Van Goudoever does explain the difference between
                        the old priestly calendar and the Pharisaic calendar for the beginning
                        and ending of Shavuoth. But he nowhere suggests WHEN the priestly
                        calendar (apparently followed by the early Christians) was altered to
                        the Pharisaic interpretation of Lev 21.11.15 sothat the Pharisaic
                        calendar was introduced for the Temple's sacrificial liturgy. My own
                        conclusion is surmised from a combination of data (a) from Josephus'
                        account of the reign of Herod Agrippa I
                        (b) from Luke's interesting story of Peter's escape from prison in Acts
                        12 and (c) from the Mishna's story of the 'Boethusian controversy' on
                        this calendar question.
                        As to (c) Rivkin has shown how much this dispute must have embroiled the
                        Judean nation at some time prior to 70. On the fields of the harvest the
                        conservative farmers, adhering to the old priestly calewndar, were told
                        each year to cut the Omer (the sheaf of barley) on the day after Pesach.
                        They were forced to do this, even when it chanced to fall on a Sabbath.
                        This new rule, vividly described in Mishnah Menachot 10:3, was carried
                        out by the Pharisees "in such a manner as to publicly expose the
                        Boethusian error.(Rivkin in "Defining Pharisees") This anonymous
                        halakhah challenged the Sadducean claim that the Omer was to be reaped
                        only on the day following the Sabbath (henced on a Sunday). Men. 10:3
                        runs as follows:
                        "How did they used to do it (i.e. prepare for the cutting of the Omer).
                        The messengers of the 'bet din' used to go out on the eve of the
                        festival and make bunches while still attached to the soil, sothat it
                        would be easier to reap; and (all the inhabitants of) the towns nearby
                        assembled there in order that it might be reaped in great pomp. When it
                        grew dark he (the reaper) would say,"Is the sun set?" and they (the
                        people) would reply, "Yes". "Is the sun set?" and they would again
                        answer, "Yes". "With this sickle?" and they would answer, "Yes."
                        "With this sickle?" and they would answer, "Yes." "With this basket?"
                        And they would answer, "Yes." "With this basket?" and they would
                        asnswer, "Yes."
                        On a Sabbath he would say to them, "On this Sabbath?" and they would
                        (again) answer, "Yes." "On this Sabbath?" and they would answer, "Yes".
                        "Shall I reap?" and they would answer, "Reap." "Shall I reap?" and they
                        would answer, "Reap." He used to call out three times for each of the
                        (questions) and they would (thrice) answer "Yea!, Yea!, Yea!"
                        Why such concern? Because of the Boethusians, who said, "The cutting
                        of the Omer is not to take place on the day following the festival" (but
                        on the morrow of the Sabbath [that is, on a Sunday])."

                        This vivid story may well give us a clue to solving the puzzle. For the
                        Sabbath before (the Christian) Easterday is this very day "following the
                        festival" (of Pesach). The Pharisees held that day to be the right day
                        for the first day (counting the fifty days of Shavuoth = Pentecost). In
                        Mark this Sabbath is Nisan 16. However, the following Sunday is
                        according to the old priestly calendar the first day of Shavuoth.
                        My point is that Herod Agrippa I at the beginning of his reign first
                        appointed a Boethusian highpriest (that is from the House of Boethus).
                        Agrippa apparently followed here a policy of Herod the Great. But soon
                        after he suddenly appointed a different high priest from the house of
                        Annas. Now why would Herod Agrippa I have done this?
                        If we combine these data with Luke's story of the persecution of the
                        early Christians by Herod, we may surmise that the change of the
                        calendar may have occurred under Agrippa who favored the Pharisees.
                        I realize this requires further testing. But we know the calendar was
                        officially altered before 70 when the Temple still stood and the farmers
                        had to prepare for the sheaf offering. I think the reign of Herod
                        Agrippa(40-44) is as good as any, in fact more likely.

                        What do you think?

                        Greetings, Karel.
                      • David C. Hindley
                        Message text written by INTERNET:K.Hanhart@net.HCC.nl ... the old priestly calendar and the Pharisaic calendar for the beginning and ending of Shavuoth.
                        Message 11 of 14 , Feb 1, 1999
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                          Message text written by INTERNET:K.Hanhart@...

                          >Jan Van Goudoever does explain the difference between
                          the old priestly calendar and the Pharisaic calendar for the beginning
                          and ending of Shavuoth.<

                          >What do you think?<

                          It sounds to me like we are not really dealing with a variant "calendar"
                          but a difference in interpretation over how the calendar should be
                          observed. At first I thought the issue revolved around an ancient schematic
                          calendar (like the fixed 364 day calendar of the DSS, which appears may
                          have been assumed in various passages of the Jewish scriptures). Now it
                          appears that everything boils down to the a possible change in officially
                          sanctioned practice, similar to the difference in interpretation regarding
                          when to slay the passover lamb. It is still the same lunar calendar.

                          BTW, I do not question your conclusion that a change in practice occurred
                          around the time that you indicated. I just felt that the term "calendar"
                          was too broad, and a more specific term should be substituted.

                          Is this really a discussion about the accuracy of the transmitted
                          tradition? If so, there are actually many possible scenarios since we
                          cannot be absolutely sure what days of the week certain festival days fell
                          on in any one year. Consequently, I do not think your observation will
                          contribute to a solution of this NT question, except on a hypothetical
                          level.

                          Dave Hindley
                          DHindley@...
                        • Yuri Kuchinsky
                          ... Thank you, David. This was not my idea of course. I came across it a few times in various places, but haven t seen any detailed defence of it as yet,
                          Message 12 of 14 , Feb 1, 1999
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                            On Fri, 29 Jan 1999, David C. Hindley wrote:

                            > Message text written by Yuri Kuchinsky
                            >
                            > >The Apoc. Peter, with its Transfiguration-like scene _after_ the
                            > Crucifixion seems to be a good lead to how earliest Mk's ending may have
                            > looked.<
                            >
                            > Very interesting!

                            Thank you, David. This was not my idea of course. I came across it a few
                            times in various places, but haven't seen any detailed defence of it as
                            yet, although it probably does exist somewhere.

                            > Perhaps your observation lends itself to the theories that canonical
                            > Mark is some sort of stripped down version of a previous Gospel.

                            I'm postulating some sort of a a proto gospel, yes, but canonical Mk is
                            not necessarily a "stripped down version" of it. Probably rather an
                            expanded version. So this proto gospel was probably a rather short gospel
                            on which the canonical Mk, as well as Mt, Lk, _and_ Jn were based. I would
                            call it protoMk.

                            By the way, to add to the idea that a Transfiguration-like event probably
                            stood originally in pMk after the Crucifixion, this is exactly what we see
                            also in Lk. I mean Lk's stripped down version of the Ascention that is
                            given in a more complete form in Acts. The complete form has some
                            interesting parallels to the Transfiguration scene, especially the two
                            angelic witnesses, presumably Moses and Elijah. So this is how the
                            original ending of Mk may have looked.

                            Regards,

                            Yuri.

                            Yuri Kuchinsky || Toronto

                            http://www.trends.net/~yuku/bbl/bbl.htm

                            The goal proposed by Cynic philosophy is apathy, which is
                            equivalent to becoming God -=O=- Julian
                          • K. Hanhart
                            On Jan 3 1999 Yuri Kuchinsky wrote: ... Dear Yuri, Clarify will take up too much space and time. Most of my argumentation you may find in my book put out by
                            Message 13 of 14 , Feb 2, 1999
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                              On Jan 3 1999 Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:

                              Hanhart had written :
                              > > ... The epilogue [of Mark] is, I think, a midrash
                              > > on LXX Isa 22,16 and LXX Isa 33,16. For in the Septuagint "a tomb hewn
                              > > from the rock" (22,16), a hapax, appears to be a metaphor for the
                              > > temple to be destroyed. Mark may well pit Joseph of Arimatea, the
                              > > councilor over against Peter
                              >
                              > I really don't see why would Mark do this, or how he does this. Perhaps
                              > you can clarify.

                              Dear Yuri,

                              'Clarify' will take up too much space and time. Most of my argumentation
                              you may find in my book put out by the Liturgical Press, "The Open Tomb,
                              A New Approach". The new approach is based on the premise that after the
                              trauma of 70 Mark, a christian 'ioudaios' ('interpreter' of Peter who
                              had read Paul's letters) revised an earlier Passover hagadah, used in
                              the ecclesia to commemorate Jesus' death and celebrate his resurrection.
                              The pre-70 hagada was set in the tone of the prayer 'Maranatha', for
                              they expected the coming of the bar-nash in their life time. The delay
                              of the Parousia necessitated a revised hagada on the ministry of Jesus
                              whose death was regarded as that of the Passover Lamb (1 Cor 5,7).
                              In his revision Mark attempted to build a bridge between the
                              crucifixion and the (to him recent!) destruction of the Temple some
                              forty years later. The cruelty and injustice by the Romans and the
                              impious handling of the ancient traditions by the temple priests and the
                              Jerusalem elite, would be set aright by God who had raised Jesus from
                              the dead.
                              The epilogue of the Gospel was inspired by Mark's re-reading of LXX Isa
                              22,16 and LXX Isa 33,16 dealing with the destruction of the First
                              Temple. You ask how he does this? By cleasrly referring to the text of
                              Isa 22" "a tomb hewn from the Rock", and by altering the nickname of
                              Simon, "Cephas", into "Petros = Rock" throughout his Gospel.

                              > > as Isaiah pitted Somnas (Sebna) overagainst Eljakim. It is worth
                              > > following this trail in the absence of another viable interpretation
                              > > (except the classical, literal one).
                              >
                              > The logical interpretation seems to be that Joseph of A had to be found to
                              > make the tomb burial story (remotely) possible. How else could they get
                              > the body from the authorities?

                              You put your finger on the weak link in the chain of argument. However,
                              Mark himself gave himself the impossible task of building a literary
                              bridge between the crucifixion of a single prophetic figure and the
                              national disaster of 70. This mysterious Joseph must somehow be related
                              to the death of Jesus and the persecution of the early Christians in
                              Jerusalem and also to the destruction of the Temple in 70. Arimathea is
                              not a family name. Mark writes "having come from Rama" (15,43, cf Jer
                              31,15) thus linking him to the destruction of the temple. Moreover, in
                              LXX Isa 22,16 the 'tomb' is a metaphor of the Temple to be destroyed. In
                              "story time" Joseph 'dares' to petition Pilate for the 'body of Jesus'.
                              This occurs at the onset of the Sabbath, Nisan 16, which is the first
                              day of the harvest (Pentecost) on Pharisaic counting of the 50 days.
                              The 'body of Jesus' appears to be a metaphor as well. For Pilate does
                              not grant him this 'sooma' but a corpse 'ptoma' (15,45). Joseph may
                              think he has put a final seal on Jesus' mission by rolling a stone
                              before the tomb, but this symbolic burial merely concerns a 'corpse' and
                              his socalled funeral would prove to be in vain. Mark, I think is
                              applying Paul's metaphor of the ecclesia as the "body" of the living
                              Christ to his midrash.
                              In "story time" the women have their horrifying vision (anablepsasai,
                              16,3) some FORTY HOURS after Jesus' death according to Mark's time
                              indicator in 15,33. The implication is, I believe, that the vision
                              concerns the disastrous events in 70, hence FORTY YEARS LATER; the women
                              are like the women in LXX 32,9 who behold the destruction of Jerusalem.
                              They flee the scene in horror (16,8).
                              Mark's time indicators are filled with symbolism. In "story time"
                              Joseph's frustrated attempt at 'burying Jesus for good' occurs at the
                              onset of Nisan 16; and the vision occurs in the early hours of Nisan 17.
                              According to the priestly festival calendar that is in the year of the
                              crucifixion the correct date for the first of the fifty days of the
                              harvest on which the "first fruit" is offered in the temple. It should
                              always fall on a Sunday (Lev. 23,11.15).

                              > I'm not sure if the parallel with the displacing of Shebna, and the
                              > promotion of Eliakim in Isaiah 22:15-25 will work here.
                              >

                              It works, I think, for Simon Peter became with all his failings the
                              apparent head of the ecclesia, according to Mark. It is promised by the
                              angel in 16,7. The enigma would be solved if we could know the identity
                              of the mysterious Joseph (who in "story time" follows the Pharisaic
                              counting of Shavuoth - who "came from Rama" and breaks the Sabbath laws
                              by "buying" linen). The midrash is highly complex. But Mark makes it
                              very clear that this Joseph is in his eyes an evil person. He is a
                              'bouleutes', eminent member of the Council. In his time he played a role
                              in "the plot" (sumboulion) "to kill Jesus" (3,6). In fact he wanted to
                              put a seal on it. If I'm right this Joseph must be somehow related to
                              the persecution of the christians (Acts 12,1) in "real time" and be "in
                              real time"a contemporary of Mark, a person of great eminence who could
                              be cast opposite Simon Peter.

                              > > We
                              > > both agree that the "early morning" of Mark 16,2 is Niesan 17.
                              >
                              > Yes, the earliest version of the empty tomb story would have been on 14th
                              > + 3 days = 17th. But later different versions were also tried.

                              Here I disagree. Therefore, I prefer to call it the 'open tomb', not the
                              empty tomb story. Mark is not handing on a known tradition concerning
                              Jesus' grave. He is conveying of message of hope to a community in
                              despair after 70, based on his faith in the risen Messiah. His "raised
                              after three days" is, I believe, half of a world-week; Mark wanted to
                              explain the delay of the parousia. The term "after three days"
                              symbolically stands for half-way to the End, "after six days" the
                              apotheosis of the Transfiguration will follow. For the Transfiguration
                              scene was the original ending of the pre-70 Gospel.

                              > The Sadduccee first day of Shabuoth was not fixed according to the lunar
                              > calendar. It was celebrated from the first Sunday after Passover, this
                              > falling on a variety of possible dates, to the Sunday 50 days later.

                              No, according to Lev 23,11 it must be the day after the Sabbath after
                              Pesach; not "a variety of possible dates". Pesach and Shavuoth are also
                              Spring festivals and both are related to the offering of firstlings and
                              first fruit.

                              > > The important question is WHEN and WHY was the official festival
                              > > calendar for the harvest ritual in the temple changed from the
                              > > priestly to the Pharisaic interpretation of Lv 23,11.15?
                              >
                              > But how do we know it was changed? How do our texts reflect the Temple
                              > rituals in the 1st c?

                              I already pointed to Mishna Menachot 10:3 and the Boethusian
                              controversy, dealing with Nisan 16 or the Sunday after Pesach in an
                              earlier post.

                              > I'm quite pessimistic that analysis of the endings of the gospels can
                              > provide many valid insights about the priority of any gospel. This is
                              > because I believe that the endings (as well as the beginnings) were the
                              > most heavily edited and changed parts of the gospels.

                              I am distinguishing between a pre-70 Mark I and a heavily revised
                              post-70 Mark II.

                              > > Cf 1 Cor 16,2.8 - Paul wants the Corinthians to lay aside gifts only
                              > > during these seven weeks, and not during 52 Sundays in a year).
                              >
                              > I don't quite see how this is derived from this text.

                              Paul himself sets a time limit in 1 Cor 16,8. He apparently wants to
                              present this 'contribution for the saints" on the (fiftieth) day of
                              Pentecost.

                              >> ...the first day of Pentecost - it became our Easter Day.
                              >
                              > Yes, eventually. But originally the Easter Day was the same as the Jewish
                              > Passover.

                              In pre-70 days the early christians must have celebrated Passover with
                              the 'ioudaioi'
                              in the night of Nisan 15, following the slaughtering of the lambs on
                              Nisan 14.
                              But "on the third day" - that is Nisan 17, - a Sunday! in the year of
                              Jesus' death
                              according to the Synoptics - they also rejoiced in his resurrection as
                              "first fruit".

                              >
                              > I think it is quite significant that the women are the first witnesses of
                              > the resurrection in Mt.
                              >
                              > > Now does Matthew elaborate on and clarify the Markan story? Or
                              > > vice versa - does Mark abbreviate Matthew?

                              Matthew elaborates, clarifies and corrects Mark (there is no 'neaniskos'
                              in Matthew and no 'Salome')
                              He clarifies because he lets the angel appear the very moment Nisan 15
                              turns to Nisan 16 on the eve after the Sabbath. The reader is thus
                              alerted to the Pharisaic-Boethusian controversy with its bitter
                              memories, I believe, of the persecution under Herod Agrippa (cf Acts
                              12,1; Mark 3,6).

                              > As already noted above, I think Passion narratives are in a class by
                              > themselves. They are the most elaborated and edited. I don't think it's
                              > possible to find many clues to the solution of the Synoptic problem there.
                              >
                              > > The Gr. participle "terountes" (of the guard in Mt) is also the
                              > > technical term for "observing" a feast day. In that case it is their
                              > > duty to hinder 'the observance of Nisan 17' as the beginning of the
                              > > harvest of the resurrection, as the Christians were proclaiming it on
                              > > the Day of Pentecost.
                              >
                              > Whose duty is to "hinder"? I don't quite understand.

                              In "story time" the guards are told on the Sabbath they must make sure
                              that 'no resurrection' takes place on the "third day" (cf Mt 16,21), so
                              they must keep guard until the following Tuesday. In "real (liturgical)
                              time"
                              Christians were proclaiming Jesus' resurrection on the Sunday following
                              Pesach in defiance of the forceful introduction of Nisan 16 by Herod
                              Agrippa.
                              The agricultural symbolism of seed and harvest apparently was applied
                              to the history of Jesus and his movement by the early Christians (f.i.
                              Mark 4, 1 Cor 15, 4.20.37).
                              Whatever motivated Agrippa to officially change the dates of Pentecost
                              is not clear. It is clear that Mark interpreted this as a direct attack
                              on christian observance (Mark 3,6).
                              >

                              > > These calendrical problems, which seem to be so insignificant,
                              >
                              > They are very significant.

                              >> It would become highly relevant if indeed Herod Agrippa had the official
                              > > calendar changed for religio/political reasons in opposition to Peter
                              > > and the apostles who kept proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus on the
                              > > Temple square and perhaps opposed his policies as well.
                              >
                              > I don't think Peter and friends were in any position to influence how and
                              > when Temple ceremonies were observed. They were not so influential.

                              Perhaps not. But, as you also said, Samaritan chronology coincided with
                              the christian
                              calendar. Also Qumranites seemed to have adhered to the "day after the
                              Sabbath". The opposition to Herod was perhaps stronger than you infer.


                              Best regards,

                              Karel - 's-Hertogenbosch
                            • K. Hanhart
                              ... Dear David, The terms old priestly calendar and the Pharisaic calender with regard to Shavuoth are frequently used. 1. There is no dispute re. the fact
                              Message 14 of 14 , Feb 7, 1999
                              • 0 Attachment
                                David C. Hindley wrote:
                                >
                                > Message text written by INTERNET:K.Hanhart@...
                                >
                                > >Jan Van Goudoever does explain the difference between
                                > the old priestly calendar and the Pharisaic calendar for the beginning
                                > and ending of Shavuoth.<
                                >
                                > >What do you think?<
                                >
                                > Now it appears that everything boils down to the a possible change in officially sanctioned practice, similar to the difference in inerpretation regarding when to slay the passover lamb. It is still the same lunar calendar.

                                Dear David,
                                The terms old priestly 'calendar' and the Pharisaic calender with regard
                                to Shavuoth are frequently used.
                                1. There is no dispute re. the fact that the Boethusians defended the
                                priestly calendar and that at some time the dates of Shavuoth were
                                replaced by the Pharisaic counting of the fifty days. The temple then
                                still stood and in the Talmud the Pharisaic counting of the Omer
                                beginning with Nisan 16 still prevails. The question is WHEN the
                                official celebrations began on Nisan 16 which is not necessarily a
                                Sunday.
                                Of course,thare were other halakhic controversies in the First Century
                                between Boethusians and Pharisees.
                                2. This is no small matter. For the burial took place at the onset of
                                Nisan 16. Nothing happend thereafter. For the women. however, the "first
                                day" of Shavuoth, Nisan 17, is filled with the promise of the Messianic
                                harvest to come as Jesus rose from the dead, as the first fruit.

                                Greetings, your KAREL
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