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[Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus

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  • Karel Hanhart
    ... Q What did this proposed first letter contain? Do you mean an original ... Richard: Yes, the first letter is the what we know as the Gospel of Luke; the
    Message 1 of 13 , Nov 2, 2003
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       > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: Richard Anderson <randerson58@...>
      > To: <Synoptic-L@...>
      > Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2003 11:47 AM
      > Subject: [Synoptic-L] re: Luke to Theophilus
      >
      >
      > Karel:
      > Richard,
      > Your interest in the names of the undoubtedly historical women in the
      > open(ed) tomb narratives is commendable and your conclusion  that Luke calls
      > attention to Johanna through the chiastic structure is interesting.  My
      > question refers to the link to the high priest, Theophilus (37-41) and your
      > hypothesis of two different "letters",.written by Luke, to this Theophilus.

       

      Q What did this proposed first 'letter' contain? Do you mean an original

      > draft of the Gospel?. Surely not canonical Luke?

       

      Richard:

      Yes, the first letter is the what we know as the Gospel of Luke; the letter did not contain this heading.

       

      Karel

      > Isn't the end date of the high  priest Theophilus uncertain, more likely 40

      > than 41 CE?

       

      Richard:

      The end date is not essential to the proposal.  I do accept the dating assigned by Jeremais and Mason, both of whom state 41 C.E. as the end date.

       

      Karel:

      Josephus indeed is unclear concerning the dates when Agrippa I deposed and appointed various high priests during his short reign. But research into Herod Agrippa's possible reasons for appointing these high priests àre essential as well as his motivation for the persecution of the apostles(Acts 12). If we knew for sure, the interpretation of difficult and key texts  such as Mark 3,6, 1 Cor 15,5 and Acts 1,26; 2,1ff and 12,1ff would be much easier. Upon his accession to the throne of Judea. Agrippa deposed your Theophilus, who belonged to the house of Annas and appointed Simon Cantheras of the house of Boethus as high priest, thus following the example of Herod the Great who favored Simon Boethus. But then, strangely enough, in quick succession: he again deposed the Boethusian Cantheras and offered the post to Jonathan of the house of Annas. Why, we wonder? And why did this Jonathan decline to accept the high office in a personal letter and why did he suggest to appoint his brother Matthias in stead? (Josephus was privy to the content of the letter). Sometime later Agrippa appointed again a Boethusian, named Elionaios, son of Cantheras. These highly ambiguous actions are probably related to his persecution of the Christian community in Jerusalem viewed in the light of the well known Boethusian / Pharisaic dispute concerning the dating of Pentecost on the festval calendar, discussed in the Mishna.

          We know for a fact that some time before the destruction of the temple the dating of the First Day of the harvest feast

      (Pentecost) was officially altered. The Boethusians followed the ancient priestly calendar date, namely, the first Sunday after Passover, while the Pharisees held to a fixed date, Nisan 16, the day after Pesach.

          We also know that the Jesus' community in Jerusalem kept on celebrating the Sunday after Passover thus following the ancient priestly calendar (Lc 23,11, 1 Cor 16,1.8). They celebrated the resurrection of Jesus on that day, and proclaimed his resurrection on the fiftieth day, again a Sunday (Acts 2). We are touching here on the origins of the much later annual celebration of the Sunday replacing in the end the Sabbath. 

          Thus the Sabbath, Nisan 16, that followed Good Friday was the First Day of the Pentecostal harvest according to the new Pharisaic calendar. The most likely date for the institution of this Pharisaic dating of Shabuoth (Pentecost) appears to be during the reign of Herod Agrippa I. In that case Jonathan's declining to accept the high office may well be due to his reluctance of carrying out Agrippa's plans to persecute the first apostolic community. He would have known his brother Matthias' readiness of  carrying out Herod's wishes. Matthias and Theophilus were, like Caiaphas, of the house of Annas. If we take into account that according to Acts 1,23 a certain Matthias was to replace Judas Iscariot for the apostolic period (he would thus walk walk in Iscariot's footsteps) we have a reasonable solution to the problems posed by these puzzling passages. For in the Synoptic Gospels the burial occurs the very moment that the day of Passover (Good Friday) turned to Silent Saturday (that is Nisan 15 turned to Nisan 16, i.e. the new Pharisaic date for the First Day of the harvest). Combining these two data we may have found an answer to the motivations behind Agrippa's strange behavior in deposing and appointing high priests from the two rival houses - the Boethusians and the Pharisees - in quick succession. We know Herod had James Zebedee decapitated and he put Peter into prison at that time. These may well have been, it seems to me, the historical facts hinted at in Mark 3,6.  

       

       

      Karel's second question:

      Q. At the time of the 'second letter'(in your hypothesis trhe book of Acts) Theophilus, > however, was no longer high priest

       

      Richard:

      Admitted

       

      Karel:

      > and therefore could no longer exercise his authority. Logically, this                > "second letter" should have been addressed to Matthias, high

      > priest in 65-67 CE. or at least to both father and son, should not it?

       

      Richard:

      No, not true. People seeking relief from those in power write the letter to the person whom they believe can provide that relief.  Annas was the power beyond the throne even though his son-in-law was the named High Priest....

       Jonathan succeeded to this role and was the leader of one or more missions to Rome. After the murder of Jonathan, the Proposal states that Theophilus succeeded to this role. Theophilus was a member of the wealthiest Jewish family of his day and a ranking member of the Temple establishment. Even after removal from office the high priest kept his title and retained his authority (Jeremias, 157).  His death still had its atoning power (Jeremias, 158; Num. 35:25). Thus even the former High Priest could be addressed as 'Most Excellent.'  Both Luke and Paul probably knew Theophilus.  Paul received his letters (Acts 9:1) from Jonathan or perhaps Theophilus and probably knew Theophilus.

       

      Karel:

      I fail to see the logic here.  Perhaps Paul received his letters to persecute the Judean Christians from Jonathan or Theophilus (Acts 8:1), but that certainly does not make Theophilus the large hearted high priest to whom one could make an appeal. Luke too states emophatically, like Mark and Matthew that "the high priests" were to reject the Son of Man.

       

      Johanna may well have been a highly placed lady, wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, who became a follower of Jesus (Lk. 8:3). . . . Based on information from his sources Luke may have had good reasons to mention Johanna especially among Jesus' women followers.

       

      Richard: 

      You deny the validity of my proposal and the claims I have asserted yet you fail to address the evidence presented by the existence of the ossuary with the inscription

       

      Karel:

      The ossuary is a weak argument. The name Johanna, the feminine counterpart of the common Hebrew name Johanan (John) was certainly not unusual.  

       

      Richard:

       or the double chiasmus centered on Johanna. 

       

      Karel:

       

      The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting and important, as I wrote before. However, the difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a honorific title), and your very early dating of his Gospel and of his Acts are enormous, turning synoptic scholarship upside down. One would need IMHO better literary and historical proof than merely a suggestion that the Johanna in Luke's resurrection story might be the same as the granddaughter of a high priest from the house of Annas, that bitterly persecuted the ecclesia.

        

      cordially,

       

      Karel

       

       

    • Karel Hanhart
      ... Q What did this proposed first letter contain? Do you mean an original ... Richard: Yes, the first letter is the what we know as the Gospel of Luke; the
      Message 2 of 13 , Nov 2, 2003
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         > ----- Original Message -----
        > From: Richard Anderson <randerson58@...>
        > To: <Synoptic-L@...>
        > Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2003 11:47 AM
        > Subject: [Synoptic-L] re: Luke to Theophilus
        >
        >
        > Karel:
        > Your interest in the names of the undoubtedly historical women in the
        > open(ed) tomb narratives is commendable and your conclusion  that Luke calls
        > attention to Johanna through the chiastic structure is interesting.  My
        > question refers to the link to the high priest, Theophilus (37-41) and your
        > hypothesis of two different "letters",.written by Luke, to this Theophilus.

         

        Q What did this proposed first 'letter' contain? Do you mean an original

        > draft of the Gospel?. Surely not canonical Luke?

         

        Richard:

        Yes, the first letter is the what we know as the Gospel of Luke; the letter did not contain this heading.

         

        Karel

        > Isn't the end date of the high  priest Theophilus uncertain, more likely 40

        > than 41 CE?

         

        Richard:

        The end date is not essential to the proposal.  I do accept the dating assigned by Jeremais and Mason, both of whom state 41 C.E. as the end date.

         

        Karel:

        Josephus indeed is unclear concerning the dates when he deposed and appointed various high priests during his short reign. But research into Herod Agrippa's possible reasons for appointing these high priests àre essential as well as his motivation for the persecution of the apostles(Acts 12) for interpreting difficult and key texts such as Mark 3,6, 1 Cor 15,5 and Acts 2 and 12. Upon the accession to the throne of Judea Agrippa deposed Theophilus (!) of the house of Annas and appointed Simon Cantheras of the house of Boethus high priest, thus following the example of Herod the Great who favored that house. But then, strangely enough, in quick succession: he again deposed the Boethusian Cantheras and offered the post to Jonathan of the house of Annas. Why, we wonder? And why did this Jonathan decline to accept the high office in a personal letter and why did he suggest to appoint his brother Matthias in stead (Josephus was privy to the content of the letter)? Sometime later Agrippa appointed again a Boethusian, named Elionaios, son of Cantheras. These actions are probably related to his persecution of the Christian community in Jerusalem in light of the well known Boethusian / Pharisaic dispute concerning the dating of Pentecost on the festval calendar.

            We know for a fact that some time before the destruction of the temple the dating of the First Day of the harvest feast

        (Pentecost) was officially altered. The Boethusians followed the ancient priestly calendar date, namely, the first Sunday after Passover, while the Pharisees held to a fixed date, Nisan 16, the day after Pesach.

            We also know that the Jesus' community in Jerusalem kept on celebrating the Sunday after Passover according to the ancient priestly calendar. They the resurrection of Jesus on that day, and proclaimed the resurrection on the fiftieth day, again a Sunday (Acts 2). the origins of the later annual celebration of the Sunday. 

         

        But according to the new Pharisaic calendar, the preceding Sabbath, Nisan 16, was the First Day of the Pentecostal harvest. The most likely date for the institution of the Pharisaic dating of Shabuoth (Pentecost) appears to be during the reign of Herod Agrippa I. In that case Jonathan's declining top accept this office may be due to his reluctance of carrying out Agrippa's plans to persecute the first apostolic community, while Matthiuas of the house of Annas seemed ready to carry out Herod's wishes. If we take into account that according to Acts 1,23 a certain Matthias was to replace Judas Iscariot for the apostolic period (and thus walk in Iscariots footsteps) we have a reasonable solution of the problems posed by these puzzling passages. For in the Synoptic Gospels the burial occurs the very moment that the day of Passover (Good Friday) turned to Silent Saturday (that is Nisan 15 turned to Nisan 16, i.e. the new Pharisaic dat for the First Day of the harvest). Combining these two data we may have found an answer to the motivations behind Agrippa's strange behavior in deposing and appointing high priests from the two rival houses - the Boethuisians and the Pharisees - in quick succession. We know Herod had James Zebedee decapitated and he put Peter into prison at that time. These were,it seems me, the historical facts hinted at in Mark 3,6.  

         

         

        Karel's second question:

        Q. At the time of the 'second letter' Theophilus, however, was no longer

        > high priest

         

        Richard:

        Admitted

         

        Karel:

        > and therefore could no longer exercise his authority. Logically, this

        > "second letter" (KH Acts?) should have been addressed to Matthias, high

        > priest in 65-67 CE. or at least to both father and son, should not it?

         

        Richard:

        No, not true. People seeking relief from those in power write the letter to the person whom they believe can provide that relief.  Annas was the power beyond the throne even though his son-in-law was the named High Priest....

         Jonathan succeeded to this role and was the leader of one or more missions to Rome. After the murder of Jonathan, the Proposal states that Theophilus succeeded to this role. Theophilus was a member of the wealthiest Jewish family of his day and a ranking member of the Temple establishment. Even after removal from office the high priest kept his title and retained his authority (Jeremias, 157).  His death still had its atoning power (Jeremias, 158; Num. 35:25). Thus even the former High Priest could be addressed as 'Most Excellent.'  Both Luke and Paul probably knew Theophilus.  Paul received his letters (Acts 9:1) from Jonathan or perhaps Theophilus and probably knew Theophilus.

         

        Karel:

        I fail to see the logic here.  Perhaps Paul received his letters from Jonathan or Theophilus (Acts 8:1), but that certainly does not make Theophilus the large hearted high priest to whom one could make an appeal. Luke too states emophatically, like Mark and Matthew that "the high priests" were to reject the Son of Man.

         

        > Johanna may well have been a highly placed lady, wife of Chuza, Herod's

        > steward, who became a follower of Jesus (Lk. 8:3). . . . Based on

        > information from his sources Luke may have had good reasons to mention

        > Johanna especially among Jesus'

        > women followers..

         

        Richard: 

        You deny the validity of my proposal and the claims I have asserted yet you fail to address the evidence presented by the existence of the ossuary with the inscription

         

        Karel:

        The ossuary is a weak argument. The name Johanna, the feminine counterpart of the common Hebrew name Johanan (John) was certainly not unusual.  

         

        Richard:

         or the double chiasmus centered on Johanna. 

         

        Karel:

         

        The chiasmus construction interesting and important, as I wrote before. However, the difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a honorific title), and your dating of his Gospel and Acts are enormous, turning synoptic scholarship upside down. One would need IMHO better literary and historical proof than merely a suggestion that the Johanna in Luke's resurrection story might be the same as the granddaughter of a high priest from the house of Annas, that bitterly persecuted the ecclesia.

          

        cordially yours,

         

        Karel

         

         

      • John Lupia
        Karel: The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting and important, as I wrote before. However, the difficulties of equating Luke s Theophilus (a honorific
        Message 3 of 13 , Nov 3, 2003
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          Karel:



          The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting and
          important, as I wrote before. However, the
          difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a
          honorific title), and your very early dating of his
          Gospel and of his Acts are enormous, turning synoptic
          scholarship upside down.

          Dear Karel:

          Two questions:

          How is the identification of the High Priest,
          Theophilus (AD 37-41) enormously difficult?

          How is a date for the first canonical edition of the
          Gospel of Luke to c. AD 37-41 enormously difficult?

          The early dating for Acts as a whole is obvious.
          Richard has his own method to present a possible early
          writing quite different from mine. I see Acts having
          been written by at least two different authors where
          the first wrote the first 11 chapters and the latter
          by the second author(s).


          Karel:
          One would need IMHO better literary and historical
          proof than merely a suggestion that the Johanna in
          Luke's resurrection story might be the same as the
          granddaughter of a high priest from the house of
          Annas, that bitterly persecuted the ecclesia.


          From the standpoint of historigraphic method one must
          keep in mind that to make a valid suggestion the
          suggestion must first be, at least, possible. For the
          possibility, or if you prefer "suggestion" to be weak,
          awkward, undesireable, or untenable one must
          demonstrate difficulties the proposal encounters, or
          in your earlier characterization above "enormous
          difficulties" it encounters.

          As for "turning synoptic scholarship upside down" I
          cannot think of a more appealing turn of events than
          to see this come to fruition and fulfillment for
          reasons that are obvious to many, today as well as in
          the past. Since Lukan priority has no substantial
          studies it stands to reason that it will be "turning
          synoptic scholarship upside down".


          Giovanni Lupia


          =====
          John N. Lupia, III
          Toms River New Jersey 08757 USA
          Phone: (732) 505-5325
          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
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        • Richard H. Anderson
          Karel Hanhart, greetings: Karel wrote: I fail to see the logic here. Perhaps Paul received his letters to persecute the Judean Christians from Jonathan or
          Message 4 of 13 , Nov 3, 2003
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            Karel Hanhart, greetings:

            Karel wrote:  I fail to see the logic here.  Perhaps Paul received his letters to persecute the Judean Christians from Jonathan or Theophilus (Acts 8:1), but that certainly does not make Theophilus the large hearted high priest to whom one could make an appeal. Luke too states emophatically, like Mark and Matthew that "the high priests" were to reject the Son of Man.
            Karel: 
            Johanna may well have been a highly placed lady, wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, who became a follower of Jesus (Lk. 8:3). . . . Based on information from his sources Luke may have had good reasons to mention Johanna especially among Jesus' women followers.
            Richard Anderson 
             You deny the validity of my proposal and the claims I have asserted yet you fail to address the evidence presented by the existence of the ossuary with the inscription
            Karel:
              The ossuary is a weak argument. The name Johanna, the feminine counterpart of the common Hebrew name Johanan (John) was certainly not unusual.   

              Richard:  
             or the double chiasmus centered on Johanna.  
            Karel:   The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting and important, as I wrote before. However, the difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a honorific title), and your very early dating of his Gospel and of his Acts are enormous, turning synoptic scholarship upside down. One would need IMHO better literary and historical proof than merely a suggestion that the Johanna in Luke's resurrection story might be the same as the granddaughter of a high priest from the house of Annas, that bitterly persecuted the ecclesia. 

            Karel,
             
            When Theophilus: A Proposal” was first published as an article in Evangelical Quarterly the most common objection raised was that there was no evidence apart from Josephus of the existence of the High Priest Theophilus.  The discovery of the ossuary of Johanna, granddaughter of the High Priest Theophilus and the publication of the archaeological findings puts this objection to rest.
             
            You sem to think it was illogical for Luke to write, let alone make an irenical presentation to Theophilus, the High Priest.  Millions of Americans wrote to Franklin and/or Eleanor during the seventeen years they lived in the White House.  These letters are only now beginning to be analyzed.  They no doubt paint a rich mosaic of the dreams and hopes of Americans during the Great Depression years.  Were these letters illogical?
             
            A communication addressed to the High Priest is not preposterous. Justin Martyr's First Apology was addressed to the Roman Emperor. The recently published Halakhic Letter [miqsat ma'ase ha-Torah] known as MMT was sent to the High Priest by the Dead Sea Scroll Community.  Were these letters illogical?

            You assert that the argument with respect to the ossuary is a weak argument because Johanna is a common name.  You however have not probably considered the argument.  Although Johanna is a common name (the fifth most common female Jewish name; but only represents 3.24% of the total sample), it appears only in the Gospel of Luke and nowhere else in the NT. The Aramaic variant of the name is Yohanah. Barag and Flusser gives three examples of Yohanah: one published by Sukenik, another by Puech and third by Benoit which are identical with the Yohanah found in Luke 8:3 and 24:10.  It also appears on an ossuary identifying Johanna in Aramaic as the granddaughter of Theophilus the High priest.  Joanna in Aramaic is not a common name.

            Theophilus is a rare Jewish male name appearing only three times in a collection of 2040 male Jewish names from 300 BCE to 300 CE.  See lexicon by Tal Illan.  More importantly Johanna appears in combination with Theophilus in only two places, the Gospel of Luke and the ossuary.  However the two name combination of Johanna and Theophilus appearing together on the ossuary and also appearing in the Gospel of Luke when considered together with the rarity of the Theophilus name in Palestine is strong circumstantial evidence that the proposed identification is correct. The strength of the two name combination’ is shown by the fact that J.T. Milik used a two name ossuary inscribed with "Alexander son of Simon", two admittedly common names in Palestine and the whole context of the inscriptions to propose that the tomb in question belongs to the family of him who helped Jesus to carry the cross.  Therefore this combination of Johanna in Aramaic and Theophilus is highly significant and when this evidence is combined with the double chiasmus in Luke 24 which you have acknowledged to be "indeed interesting and important", the conclusion is escapeable that Theophilus is the High Priest and Johanna is his granddaughter.
             

            Luke made an irenical presentation.  What was the attitude of Jesus toward the Sadducees?

            According to Mark (12:18-27), Jesus said to the Sadducees: "How wrong you are! And do you know why? it is because you don't know Scriptures, or God's power. You are completely wrong!"

            Matthew's Jesus (22:23-33) says some of the same: "How wrong you are! It is because you don't know the Scriptures, or God's power." Not found are the phrases, "And do you know why?", and the emphatic, dogmatic, "You are completely wrong!" is also missing.

             

            Luke (20:27-40) records none of these put downs. How come? The Theophilus Proposal provides us with an answer.  Luke was writing to Theophilus, the High Priest, a Sadducee!

             

            Richard H. Anderson

             

             

             
             
             
             
             
             
                
             
          • Karel Hanhart
            ... From: John Lupia To: Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 4:36 PM Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus
            Message 5 of 13 , Nov 4, 2003
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              ----- Original Message -----
              From: John Lupia <jlupia2@...>
              To: <synoptic-l@...>
              Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 4:36 PM
              Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus


              Karel:

              > The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting and
              > important, as I wrote before. However, the
              > difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a
              > honorific title), and your very early dating of his
              > Gospel and of his Acts are enormous, turning synoptic
              > scholarship upside down.

              John::

              > Two questions:
              >
              > How is the identification of the High Priest,
              > Theophilus (AD 37-41) enormously difficult?
              >
              > How is a date for the first canonical edition of the
              > Gospel of Luke to c. AD 37-41 enormously difficult?

              As I wrote Steve:
              With my remark re. studies of the Synoptic problem turned upside down, I
              meant that no one, as far as I know, has claimed. that Luke's Gospel was
              written at the end of the thirties!!


              > The early dating for Acts as a whole is obvious.

              Is it that "obvious"? Even since von Harnack some scholars have defended the
              theory that Acts was written first and that Luke adopted patterns from his
              Acts, simply because the book stopped with Paul arguing with "local leaders"
              in Rome, hence before 70 CE. The theory was still defended by the late Dutch
              scholar G. Bouwan. However, Luke according to most scholars wrote his Acts
              m,uch later. He probably thought it wise to leave the story of the Judean
              rebeliion and the subsequent beleaguering and fall of Jerusalem to the
              imagination of his readers. It had become public knowledge. His assesment
              might be deemed too painful in Judean circles and quite subversive to Roman
              eyes.


              > Richard has his own method to present a possible early
              > writing quite different from mine. I see Acts having
              > been written by at least two different authors where
              > the first wrote the first 11 chapters and the latter
              > by the second author(s).
              >
              >
              > Karel:
              > One would need IMHO better literary and historical proof than merely a
              suggestion that the Johanna in Luke's resurrection story might be the same
              as the granddaughter of a high priest from the house of Annas, which
              bitterly persecuted the ecclesia.
              >
              John:
              > >From the standpoint of historigraphic method one must
              > keep in mind that to make a valid suggestion the
              > suggestion must first be, at least, possible. For the
              > possibility, or if you prefer "suggestion" to be weak,
              > awkward, undesireable, or untenable one must
              > demonstrate difficulties the proposal encounters, or
              > in your earlier characterization above "enormous
              > difficulties" it encounters.

              Karel:
              Yes, John, one can only offer literary 'proof', if it is based on hard,
              historical data. Objective truth cannot be had on an ever debatable
              interpretation of these difficult texts. My critique is focussed on the
              lack of these hard data. For that very reason a
              hermeneutic of suspicion, - alas, the least objective of interpretative
              approaches -, is admissable in this case. I have my suspicions about
              Josephus' account of king Agrippa's actions. I am for instance interested
              in Josephus' story of a certain Simon who called an "ecclesia" together and
              was publicly mocked by Herod Agrippa I who subsequently banished by him. Is
              this related to the story of Peter's miraclulous escape in Acts 12 and his
              going to "another place (topos)"? What do you think? Here I believe, if
              reluctantly, a hermeneutic of suspicion is required. My hypothesis is that
              the two are indeed related. Josephus is hinting here at historical events
              he does not wish to spell out.


              cordially

              Karel









              >
              > As for "turning synoptic scholarship upside down" I
              > cannot think of a more appealing turn of events than
              > to see this come to fruition and fulfillment for
              > reasons that are obvious to many, today as well as in
              > the past. Since Lukan priority has no substantial
              > studies it stands to reason that it will be "turning
              > synoptic scholarship upside down".
              >
              >
              > Giovanni Lupia
              >
              >
              > =====
              > John N. Lupia, III
              > Toms River New Jersey 08757 USA
              > Phone: (732) 505-5325
              > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
              > God Bless America
              >
              > __________________________________
              > Do you Yahoo!?
              > Exclusive Video Premiere - Britney Spears
              > http://launch.yahoo.com/promos/britneyspears/
              >
              > Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
              > List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
              >



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            • Karel Hanhart
              ... From: Richard H. Anderson To: Karel Hanhart ; Synoptic-L Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 6:33 PM Subject: RE: [Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus
              Message 6 of 13 , Nov 4, 2003
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                ----- Original Message -----
                Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 6:33 PM
                Subject: RE: [Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus

                ..............
                 
                Richard:
                 
                When Theophilus: A Proposal” was first published as an article in Evangelical Quarterly the most common objection raised was that there was no evidence apart from Josephus of the existence of the High Priest Theophilus. 
                 
                Karel:
                 
                The major part of our knowledge of Jewish history of the first century is from Josephus. This does not make the name of this high priest exceptional. However, he furnishes very little "evidence" on the followers of John the Baptist and the christian Judean movement, certainly not an insignificant, minor movement. It could easily have been available if Josephus had been a little more forthcoming. 
                 
                Richard:
                 
                You sem to think it was illogical for Luke to write, let alone make an irenical presentation to Theophilus, the High Priest.  Millions of Americans wrote to Franklin and/or Eleanor during the seventeen years they lived in the White House. 
                 
                Karel:
                 
                An inept comparison. Think it through. You wouldnot want to compare Franklin Roosevelt with Caiaphas or Annas. Nor the Gospel of Luke with the letters to the president of a modern democracy of the 20th century like the USA. It was written on a handwritten copy in Greek for an irenical presentation of the Jesus' movement. Do you seriously consider that Theophilus needed this information because he was unaware and thus ignorant of the aims of this movement?  
                 
                Richard:
                You assert that the argument with respect to the ossuary is a weak argument because Johanna is a common name.  You however have not probably considered the argument.  Although Johanna is a common name (the fifth most common female Jewish name; but only represents 3.24% of the total sample), it appears only in the Gospel of Luke and nowhere else in the NT. The Aramaic variant of the name is Yohanah. Barag and Flusser gives three examples of Yohanah: one published by Sukenik, another by Puech and third by Benoit which are identical with the Yohanah found in Luke 8:3 and 24:10.  It also appears on an ossuary identifying Johanna in Aramaic as the granddaughter of Theophilus the High priest.  Joanna in Aramaic is not a common name.
                 
                Karel:
                 
                Women were not much discussed in public at the time.
                 
                 
                cordially yours,
                 
                Karel

                 
              • John Lupia
                ... Dear Karel: So then, are we to understand by this remark that there are no hard data that imperil, prevent, or dismiss Theophilus the High Priest as the
                Message 7 of 13 , Nov 5, 2003
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                  --- Karel Hanhart <k.hanhart@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > ----- Original Message -----
                  > From: John Lupia <jlupia2@...>
                  > To: <synoptic-l@...>
                  > Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 4:36 PM
                  > Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] Re: Luke to Theophilus
                  >
                  >
                  > Karel:
                  >
                  > > The chiasmus construction is indeed interesting
                  > and
                  > > important, as I wrote before. However, the
                  > > difficulties of equating Luke's Theophilus (a
                  > > honorific title), and your very early dating of
                  > his
                  > > Gospel and of his Acts are enormous, turning
                  > synoptic
                  > > scholarship upside down.
                  >
                  > John::
                  >
                  > > Two questions:
                  > >
                  > > How is the identification of the High Priest,
                  > > Theophilus (AD 37-41) enormously difficult?
                  > >
                  > > How is a date for the first canonical edition of
                  > the
                  > > Gospel of Luke to c. AD 37-41 enormously
                  > difficult?
                  >
                  > As I wrote Steve:
                  > With my remark re. studies of the Synoptic problem
                  > turned upside down, I
                  > meant that no one, as far as I know, has claimed.
                  > that Luke's Gospel was
                  > written at the end of the thirties!!
                  >

                  Dear Karel:

                  So then, are we to understand by this remark that
                  there are no hard data that imperil, prevent, or
                  dismiss Theophilus the High Priest as the one
                  identified by Luke in his Preface, and that the
                  canonical version of Luke dates to and was written
                  when Theophilus was in office AD 37-41?



                  > > The early dating for Acts as a whole is obvious.
                  >
                  > Is it that "obvious"?

                  My comment was in context of the early dating being
                  problematic since the later chapters (beyond 11)
                  clearly date to AD post 41. Hence: "The early dating
                  for Acts as a whole is obvious." meaning that it is
                  onviously difficult to take Acts as a whole and date
                  it to the reign of Theophilus.



                  Even since von Harnack some
                  > scholars have defended the
                  > theory that Acts was written first and that Luke
                  > adopted patterns from his
                  > Acts, simply because the book stopped with Paul
                  > arguing with "local leaders"
                  > in Rome, hence before 70 CE.

                  Yes, agreed on the basis of the later chapters that
                  clearly assign the Roman pontificate to St. Paul (the
                  first successor of St. Peter signifying he was dead)
                  confirmed by his epistle to the Romans, an epistle
                  that could only have been written by the Roman pontiff
                  since he alone has jurisdiction and protocol allows
                  only him to address the ecclesia Romana.


                  The theory was still
                  > defended by the late Dutch
                  > scholar G. Bouwan.

                  Yes.

                  However, Luke according to most
                  > scholars wrote his Acts
                  > m,uch later.


                  You need to step back and see the big picture that
                  reveals why this is viable in a field dominated by
                  Markan priority with conditional logical syllogisms
                  built one atop another "if then" followed by "if then"
                  based on nothing but conjecture and devoid of "hard
                  data" where suggestions reigns supreme as if they were
                  all facts. Honestly, Markan priority has enjoyed two
                  centuries of prolific research and study with no
                  solution to the Synoptic Problem anywhere in sight.
                  Does not it styand to reason and common sense that an
                  altogether different approach if given the same rigor,
                  interest, time and effort might solve the Synoptic
                  Problem in less than a decade? This will be proven to
                  be the case following Lukan priority once researchers
                  begin to see the enormous implications that result
                  following this line of inquiry. Consequently, I
                  predict that the Synoptic Problem will be considered
                  to be resolved by the majority before 2013.


                  [snip]


                  > Karel:
                  > Yes, John, one can only offer literary 'proof', if
                  > it is based on hard,
                  > historical data. Objective truth cannot be had on an
                  > ever debatable
                  > interpretation of these difficult texts. My
                  > critique is focussed on the
                  > lack of these hard data. For that very reason a
                  > hermeneutic of suspicion, - alas, the least
                  > objective of interpretative
                  > approaches -, is admissable in this case.


                  Agreed. Why are you so articulate about the current
                  status questionis re: Lukan priority as it has been
                  presented thus far yet do not speak critically
                  likewise on the same grounds to Markan priority which
                  has absolutely not a single shred of evidence. Yet
                  Lukan priority does offer the opportunity to tie in
                  objective historical data with the text. Though there
                  can never be any proof in the scientific sense there
                  shall certainly exist a plethora of highly tenable
                  correlates like: Theophilus (including the ossuary),
                  Thallus, etc. that link the text to a specific early
                  period AD 37-51 and suggest rather vigorously when a
                  full array of evidence is delivered that Luke's Gospel
                  dates to this early period rather than the evidence
                  being merely circumstantial, coincidence, or open to
                  other interpretations that support radically different
                  explanations.


                  I have my
                  > suspicions about
                  > Josephus' account of king Agrippa's actions. I am
                  > for instance interested
                  > in Josephus' story of a certain Simon who called an
                  > "ecclesia" together and
                  > was publicly mocked by Herod Agrippa I who
                  > subsequently banished by him. Is
                  > this related to the story of Peter's miraclulous
                  > escape in Acts 12 and his
                  > going to "another place (topos)"? What do you think?
                  > Here I believe, if
                  > reluctantly, a hermeneutic of suspicion is required.
                  > My hypothesis is that
                  > the two are indeed related. Josephus is hinting
                  > here at historical events
                  > he does not wish to spell out.

                  Yes I agree that caution in this case is prudent. I am
                  unsure when St. Pter died. Legends have colored the
                  way most scholars, especially Catholics have read
                  history. The example I gave earlier above shows that
                  St. Paul appears to have been St. Peter's first
                  successor (not Linus according to legend) yet even
                  Catholic historians are blinded to this by the
                  legends.

                  Giovanni Lupia

                  =====
                  John N. Lupia, III
                  Toms River New Jersey 08757 USA
                  Phone: (732) 505-5325
                  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/
                  God Bless America

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                • Richard H. Anderson
                  Karel ... he was unaware and thus ignorant of the aims of this movement? No. People do not make irenical presentations because someone needs the information
                  Message 8 of 13 , Nov 6, 2003
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                    Karel
                     
                    >Do you seriously consider that
                    Theophilus needed this information because he was unaware and thus ignorant of the aims of this movement?  
                     
                    No. People do not make irenical presentations because someone needs the information because they are ignorant. Rather, it is because, it is
                     
                    designed to promote peace; pacific; conciliatory; peaceful
                     

                    Luke has written an irenical appeal addressed to the High Priest explaining and reporting to him the fulfillment of numerous prophecies. Luke proclaims the significance of Jesus' words and deeds in the context of Old Testament prophecy, which argument would only be impressive to an audience that already believed and respected the text as sacred. Only a Jew would listen to an argument based on the fulfillment of the promises to David through Jesus the Messiah. The Jewish expectation for a coming Davidic King was particularly prominent among Palestinian Jews. Jesus' royal Davidic status would not impress a Gentile, but the High Priest would entertain such an argument.

                    In a different context, C.J. Hemer, The Book of Acts in the Setting of Hellenistic History, (Tubingen 1989), 185, stated in part: "...and an essentially eirenical work like Acts does not deny the sharpness of the present issue." Other writers including F.C. Baur, (1860) and D.P. Moessner, The Lord of the Banquet, (Minneapolis, 1989), 315, have noted the Lucan irenic qualities.
                     

                    >An inept comparison.
                    No, actually it is not.  In looking at why people write letters, we do not examine the character of the recipient. You suggest the writing to Theophilus the HP is absurd. I gave examples modern and contemporary to Theophilus that suggest not. Look at my second other exampples.
                     
                    >Women were not much discussed in public at the time.
                     
                    This comment is not responsive. The fact of the matter is that Johanna is at the center of a chiasmus. 
                     

                    The proposed chiastic structure has not been previously recognized by scholars because two of the criteria set forth by Blomberg would be violated. The proposed chiasmus must solve a literary problem and the center of the chiasmus must be worthy of that position. Danker notes that "Luke rugged syntax in v. 9 troubled copyists . . . ."

                     

                    In this instance certain facts not known to scholars precluded the identification of Luke 24:8-11 as a chiasmus. These facts have now been presented and these facts now demonstrate that the chiasmus created by Luke is intentional. As noted by Long, unnecessary words were added to create the structure. Furthermore Johanna, the granddaughter of most excellent Theophilus and a witness who proclaimed the resurrection is worthy of the vertex.

                     

                    Richard H. Anderson

                     
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