1712Re: The Longer Ending of Mark
- Mar 9, 2006John Wagner,
You may benefit from my review of "Misquoting Jesus" at
www.curtisvillechristian.org/Misquoting.html . I address some of Dr.
Ehrman's statements about Mark 16:9-20 in the course of that review.
Also, at www.curtisvillechristian.org/BasicTC.html you may find some
useful links to online resources that will help you as you begin to
study New Testament textual criticism.
Regarding what you described as "the motivation of scribes to add the
longer ending of Mark 16:9-20." -- (it might be better to say either
"the Longer Ending" or "16:9-20," since they are one and the same
I do not grant that scribes added 16:9-20. I believe that Mark was
permanently interrupted as he wrote 16:8, and 16:9-20 was appended
(having previously existed as a "floating" summary of Jesus' post-
resurrection appearances) by Mark's associates in Rome prior to the
initial publication of the Gospel of Mark.
It seems to me highly unlikely that a Pauline oriented scribe would
create 16:9-20 simply in order to gain support from the Gospels for
the doctrine of speaking in tongues. At least three factors lead to
(a) if a scribe had wanted to put words in Jesus' mouth about
speaking-in-tongues, he could more easily have done so by placing the
insertion somewhere earlier in Mark.
(b) it would take an extraordinarily weird sort of scribe to add all
the material in the Long Ending that has nothing to do with tongues-
speaking in order to camoflage the one particular phrase that was his
(c) no later scribe, having access to the Gospel of Mark which
clearly places the events described in the Long Ending in Jerusalem,
would append those events as if they were the expected Galilean
appearances anticipated in 16:7.
For some background about Mark 16:9-20, I welcome you to read my
multi-part online essay devoted to this particular textual variant at
I see there are several more posts about this subject; I will try to
address them shortly.
Yours in Christ,
James Snapp, Jr.
Minister, Curtisville Christian Church
Elwood, Indiana (USA)
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