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[Synoptic-L] Thesis: Mark Used Cross Gospel in 15:42 - 16:8

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  • Karel Hanhart
    Ted, I just read your last note to Layola Gerard, in which you announcied the final part of your thesis. So I will wait engaging you on it further. Would you
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 25, 2002
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      Ted,

      I just read your last note to Layola Gerard, in which you announcied the
      final part of your thesis. So I will wait engaging you on it further.
      Would you please repeat your last post to me on the subject mentioned
      above. I was in the process of annotating it in the "reply" mode, when
      it dropped from my screen. My knowledge of computers is rudimentary. I
      would like to formulate my exegetical objections further to some of your
      presuppositions.
      Let me say (now that your post is still fresh in my mind) that I
      respect the work you did on Mark a good deal. But I wasn't able to read
      in Mark an opposition - as you suppose - to Jesus' immediate family and
      to the disciples/apostles. It is an important building block in the
      structure of your thesis, as I recall. Many will agree with me that Mark
      draws a sympathetic picture of Peter, not a hostile one. It is true, the
      apostles flee from Gethsemane and Peter, who followed Jesus to the high
      priest's court, denied his master. But, when he was reminded through the
      cockcrow of his master's prediction, he wept bitterly. Mark, it seems to
      me, is telling the story the way he does, because his fellow Christians
      suffered persecution first in Jerusalem and later in Rome. John Zebedee
      was decapitated, Peter was imprisoned in Jerusalem with the possibility
      of meeting with the same fate. I Clement offers early external evidence
      that Peter was martyred inn Rome because of his faith. The times under
      Nero were dire times.
      In persecution and living under a dictatorial regime, the temptation
      to deny one is a follower of Jesus, is great and alluring. Belonging to
      the Jesus' movement was not devoid of danger, particularly because the
      Judean nation, where the rebellion would soon break out, was located on
      the Eastern end of the empire and Jesus was executed under the title
      "king of the Judeans". So an open display of affiliation with the Jesus'
      movement and then - in Mark's language - "denying him" when accused of
      it by someone, occurred regularly. Chrisrian Judeans were accused of
      having lighted the fire that burned down a section of Rome. The
      admonition "let him deny [Gr aparnesastho] himself and take up his
      cross" (8,34) reflects a context of at least some degree of danger and
      persecution. So also in 10,39 and certainly in 13,9. The master's words
      "one of you will deliver me up" is met with a cry of everyone present
      "surely not I"; it highlights the possibility of disloyalty. But in
      this last case the key verb is 'to deliver up' . The treacherous act of
      Iscariot is set off against the minor evil of denial, that can be
      forgiven. Hence Peter's tears and the angel's message "tell it to the
      eleven and to Peter" (16,7) support the classical understanding of
      Peter's role in the Gospel. He is no hero, a fallible human being, yet
      saved by his faith in the master, despite his denial. The last emphatic
      mentioning of Petermtherefore, is not a malicious remark by Mark,
      directed against the Jerusalem community led by Peter, James and John,
      as you seem to imply. Or am I wrong?
      Read in the light of persecution (light or heavy) first in
      Jerusalem and later in Rome, the act of denial [Gr ernesato and
      erneito, 14, 68.70], did occur in the days Mark wrote. Note Jesus
      admonition to deny [ apernasosthe] and "take up your cross (! ! )".
      Thus in his Gospel Mark warned his readers and encouraged them at the
      same time: even Simon denied his master, although in the end, he gave
      his life for his faith.
      Yes, your approach to the Gospel is radically different from mine.
      Doesn't it demonstrate the impasse the research on Mark has reached as
      prof. Luz noted? However, we should not give up discussing the subject
      of the early christian movement as reflected in the Gospels. The issues
      are too important for that.
      Once I receive your last post to me again I will answer the matter of
      the guard that Raymond Brown raised.
      with regards

      Karel.




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