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[Synoptic-L] omission of the Lord's Prayerin Mark

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  • Brian E. Wilson
    Mark Goodacre writes -- ... I wonder whether, assuming the Griesbach Hypothesis, the reason for Mark omitting the Lord s Prayer is also the reason why he
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 20, 2001
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      Mark Goodacre writes --
      >
      >If I were this Mark, I'd be very interested in united testimony in
      >those sources, apparently intended for corporate recitation, like the
      >Lord's Prayer. But perhaps this Mark is bound too strongly by the
      >constraints of the literary procedure he has decided upon? Yet he is
      >not so constrained that he cannot help introducing an allusion to an
      >element of it in 11.25, so that explanation won't do. So for me,
      >what it comes down to is this: what kind of profile of Mark the
      >redactor does the Griesbach theory imply?
      >
      I wonder whether, assuming the Griesbach Hypothesis, the reason for Mark
      omitting the Lord's Prayer is also the reason why he alludes to an
      element of it in ll.25? J. J. Griesbach argued that Mark could have
      omitted the Lord's Prayer because Mark generally did not like long
      sections of (mostly) discourse. Another way of expressing this would be
      that Mark liked the teaching of Jesus to be given in short discourse
      passages within narrative settings.

      On this explanation, Mark omitted the long section of mostly discourse
      containing the Lord's Prayer in Matthew, and similarly the long section
      of mostly discourse containing the Lord's Prayer in Luke. But in Mk
      11.23-25, Mark included an allusion to Mt 5.23(b), ("if you are offering
      your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has
      something against you"), and also to Matthew's comment on the Lord's
      Prayer in Mt 6.14, ("For if you forgive men their trespasses, your
      heavenly Father also will forgive you"), within the clear narrative
      setting of the cursing and withering of the fig tree he found in Mt
      21.18-22. In this way Mark produced a discourse section of three verses
      in length (Mk 11.23-25) which included Matthew's comment on the Lord's
      Prayer, these three verses being placed within a clear narrative setting
      (they were preceded by the cursing of the withered fig-tree, and
      followed by the narrative of the chief priests, scribes and elders
      confronting Jesus over the question of authority). To have included the
      Lord's prayer as well as Matthew's comment on it at this point, however,
      would have turned a short section of three verses of discourse into a
      lengthy section of eight verses of discourse. This might well have been
      getting uncomfortably long from Mark's point of view. So Mark's omission
      of the Lord's Prayer and his inclusion at 11.25 of Matthew's comment on
      the Lord's Prayer are both because Mark liked the teaching of Jesus to
      be given in short discourse passages within clear narrative settings.

      I would suggest that a major part of the profile of Mark the redactor
      implied by the Griesbach Hypothesis is that Mark liked the teaching of
      Jesus to be given in short passages of discourse within narrative
      settings. On this understanding, Mark's literary procedure could have
      been an expression of his theology that the deeds of Jesus, especially
      the miracles and the Passion, revealed the nature of God. So the
      Griesbachian redaction critic, by assuming the Griesbach Hypothesis, can
      achieve the aim of his redaction criticism which is to discern the
      *theology* special to the evangelist Mark himself. Part of the result is
      to show the evangelist Mark's own theological view that the deeds of
      Jesus are the kingdom of God in action, and therefore a "window into
      God".

      Best wishes,
      BRIAN WILSON

      E-mail; brian@... HOMEPAGE www.twonh.demon.co.uk

      Rev B.E.Wilson,10 York Close,Godmanchester,Huntingdon,Cambs,PE29 2EB,UK
      > "What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot
      > speak thereof one must be silent." Ludwig Wittgenstein, "Tractatus".
      _

      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
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