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Re: [XTalk] Re: [Synoptic-L] Thesis: Mark Used Cross Gospel in 15:42-16:8, Pt.1

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  • Karel Hanhart
    ... Ted, Yes, I have read your exposé and I reached the very opposite conclusions. And both interpretations are based on the same texts of Mark. With one
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 23, 2002
      > Ted Weeden wrote in response to what:
      >> Karel Hanhart wrote , January 29, 2002:
      >> Karel, while we agree on the approximate date of Mark, we hold quite
      >> different
      >> views with regard to the Markan provenance.
      >> Again, I have developed a position which places the Markan community
      >> in the
      >> village region of Caesarea Philippi. I referred in my post to you
      >> where that
      >> position can be located, namely, in my essay, "Guidelines for
      >> Locating the
      >> Markan Community," Kata Markon (2/29/00); XTalk (2/29/00; Archives
      >> #3913). I
      >> interpret Mark as being a Galilean, or Galilean sympathizer, who is
      >> strongly
      >> anti-Judean. I do not mean *anti-Jewish.* Mark is opposed to the
      >> cultic
      >> ideology of Judean Judaism and its Temple establishment, as well, in
      >> my view, as
      >> the Jerusalem Church which has "sold out" under James and the
      >> tradition of the
      >> cohort of the Twelve to the Judean orientation.

      Yes, I have read your exposé and I reached the very opposite
      conclusions. And both interpretations are based on the same texts of
      Mark. With one distinct difference in approach. You believe Mark knew a
      so-called Cross Gospel, which Crossan distilled from the second century
      Gospel of Peter and which in the judgment of many is inauthentic.
      (a) It is written in the "I" form. (I, Peter, saw...). To me, Crossan
      circumvented the interpretation of Mark's opened tomb story by claiming
      that Mark made use of this supposedly earlier Cross Gospel. In this
      strongly anti-judaic Gospel of Peter (including the Cross Gospel -
      distillate, Jesus is pictured as leaving the tomb accompanied by two
      other figures in the face of guards. Judean bystanders bemoan the fact
      that Jerusalem will be destroyed because of their sins. Does it not
      appear to be a second century hotch-potch of themes taken from the
      Synoptics and especially from John? (Compare the use of hoi ioudaioi)
      To me Mark is (a) the John Mark of the Epistles and Acts, born and
      raised in Jerusalem, {who must have mourned the fall of Jerusalem), the
      interpreter of Peter. Hence both knew each other in Rome where Peter
      died, as I Clement states.
      (b) In Mark's haggadah, Simon Peter's confession is made just before
      the scene on the Mount of Transfiguration. The confession is made at the
      most Northern part of the Gospel's geography, from where Jesus' paschal
      pilgrimage to Jerusalem begins. I believe Mark deliberately chose that
      site because of its name Caesarea Philippi. It means the 'Imperial
      Philippi'. Peter makes his confession in Caesar's territory, thus
      foreshadowing his apostolic mission in the imperial city of Rome. But,
      writes Mark, Peter also stood in Jesus' way; he first needed to learn to
      follow Jesus on the "way" to the Cross. This exegesis is confirmed in
      the Transfiguration scene, where Peter wants to build three tents and
      remain on the mountain (of eternal bliss). The readers are thus prepared
      by Mark to accept the period of suffering that will come (13,9). But
      they ought to be able to accept sufferings in the future in the faith
      and hope of resurrection (9,9).
      (c) Mark's Passover Haggadah was written for the liturgical season of
      Pesach and Shabuoth (the 50 days of Pentecost). The contrast of Galilee
      and Judea - so evident in this Gospel - runs parallel, I believe, with
      the Jewish festival calendar. The events in Jerusalem are set in the
      context of Passover (Pesach), the opened tomb story on the First of the
      fifty days of Pentecost (Shabuoth). The latter is a harvest festival.
      Now as Papias already noted, Mark didn't follow the correct "order",
      taxis of the Judean festivals. The Greek word taxis was also used for
      the order in a religious festival. Papias' remark is relevant for the
      entire structure of Mark, divided into a Galilean and Judean section.
      Whereas the women see the vision of the opened tomb on the "first"
      of the fifty days of Pentecost, the BEGINNING OF THE GOSPEL deals with
      the theme of harvest; in it the "harvest" of Jesus' preaching and deeds
      is reaped in Galilee and beyond. The healings are performed among
      Judeans and Gentiles.
      This the arresting phenomenon is that the Gospel ENDS on a Sunday,
      the first day of the harvest AND IT BEGINS on that same Sunday, the
      "first day" (arche). The long speech in chpt 4 deals also with the theme
      seed and harvest, while the long speech in chpt 13 deals with wars and
      suffering prior to the passion story proper. "Arche" in 1,1 is also
      related to the first day of creation, of course, remembered and
      celebrated on the agricultural first day of Shabuoth.
      A number of scholars have rightly suggested that the sudden ending
      of his Gospel ("he goes before you into Galilee") induces the reader to
      think back of what Jesus had accomplished in Galilee and therefore, look
      forward with confidence what the risen Jesus will accomplish among
      Judeans and Gentiles in the period of exile ahead.
      So the structure of the Gospel tells me, that in Mark's Judea,
      especially Jerusalem with its temple, is associated with the
      foundational theme of Pesach (the paschal lamb and the exodus) and
      Galilee is associated with the festival of Shabuot of the "first
      fruits". The first astounding deeds of Jesus, illustrating his teaching
      (1,27!) takes place "en tois sabbasin", that is during Shabuoth, the
      seven Pentecostal weeks [not on the sabbath day]..

      Ted Weeden wrote also:

      I think Crossan does make it clear why CG and John depict Jesus dying
      on Nisan 14 and Mark, Matthew and Luke on Nisan 15.. Since the
      disciples did not know when Jesus was crucified (see my response below)
      Crossan notes that, since

      >> no one knew exactly when Jesus was crucified, the next best option
      >> was to choose
      >> a date during the Passover that had symbolic theological meaning

      I find it difficult to believe that "the disciples did not know when
      Jesus was crucified". This statement is not supported by any textual
      data. Must I believe that the disciples were so uninterested that none
      of them inquired what happened when their beloved teacher was executed
      and on what day it happened? I rather take it that Pilate was shrewd
      enough to have Jesus executed on the very day that the city was filled
      with pilgrims attending the festival of Pesach. His false charge of a
      supposed claim by Jesus to be "king of the Judeans" would have its
      greatest impact on the population on Passover Day. All three synoptics
      claim it was on Passover Day, Nisan 15. The Nisan 14 date of the Cross
      Gospel was simply an echo of the Johannine dating. John as the last one
      of the four wrote a "spiritual Gospel", meditating on the other three.
      John wanted to focus on the theological theme that Jesus died as "the
      Lamb of God", hence he altered the date to Nisan 14, the day on which
      the paschal lamb ought to be slaughtered. In fact, his Gospel might be
      termed a theological treatise on the teachings of the Synoptic Gospels.

      >> . So the
      >> "_Cross Gospel_ had Jesus crucified on the eve of the [Passover]
      >> festival [Nisan
      >> 14] primarily with an eye on Amos 8:9-10 according to which the
      >> feast itself
      >> would be turned into mourning. Mark, however, wanted a paschal
      >> meal between
      >> Jesus and the disciples and had, therefore, to place the Crucifixion
      >> on the
      >> Passover Day."
      1 Cor 11,23ff shows that a paschal meal was held at a very early date.
      Surely, this paschal meal was held in the le'l shime'rim , Passover
      night following Nisan 14, introducing Passover Day It is not convincing
      at all that Mark "wanted a paschal meal between Jesus and the disciples"
      (you probably mean the flight of the disciples?), thus making up a date
      of the crucifixion on Nisan 15.
      Scholars believe that before the year 70 the old priestly calendar,
      - with the First Day of Pentecost always falling on a Sunday -, was
      changed in favor of the Pharisaic calendar, - the First Day was fixed on
      Nisan 16, no matter what day of the week it would fall. In the synagogue
      this new Pharisaic dating of Nisan 16 of the "First Day of the harvest"
      is still followed, while the Christian Judeans insisted on the Sunday
      after Pesach according to the commandment in Lv 23,15. So according to
      Mark's narrative Jesus was buried on Nisan 16 (the Pharisaic date for
      the beginning of the harvest) while the women see on the Sunday that the
      stone was rolled away and hear the message that Jesus was raised on the
      true First Day of the harvest (Shabuoth). Interestingly, harvest
      terminology is used when the mystery of resurrection is discussed. As
      Paul writes Jesus was raised "the first fruits of those who have died".

      Ted also wrote

      >> The most plausible series of historical events, as I reconstruct
      >> what happened, is that Jesus conducted his anti-cultic demonstration
      >> at the Temple during the Passover festival. For him
      >> to have engaged in such a provocative act as that at Passover, with
      >> Pilate
      >> always hyper-sensitive at any suggestion of sedition--- to say
      >> nothing of the
      >> rage the Temple authorities must have had toward such an offense
      >> against the
      >> cultic system--- it is logical to assume that Jesus was arrested
      >> immediately by
      >> the Temple guard, turned over to the Romans and summarily executed,
      >> without
      >> trial or anything like it

      Anyone can make a "plausble" reconstruction of what one thinks happened.
      But the interpreter should start with the texts themselves. I find the
      Nisan 15 date of the Synoptics more plausible, because Nisan 14 would
      theologically speaking have been much more attractive for these early
      authors. For Jesus' crucifixion was interpreted in terms of the paschal
      lamb, when these lambs were slaughtered in the temple. However, these
      authors stuck to the historical date of the public crucifixion on Nisan
      15. Anyone who was the least bit interested in this public event , was
      in the position to verify the accuracy of that date. John, the author f
      the Fourth Gospel demonstrates to have highly theological reasons for
      altering the date.
      Sorry, for taking up so much space. But the issue of the argument is
      important for the interpretation of Mark..

      your Karel


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