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[textualcriticism] Mark 16:9-20 and the intense focus on one variant

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  • schmuel
    Hi Folks, Dear George, I will set aside your statement about monomania. This is the second time you have insulted me, and I was hoping that perhaps someone
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 6, 2011
      Hi Folks,

      Dear George, I will set aside your statement about "monomania."  This is the second time you have insulted me, and I was hoping that perhaps someone else would comment that your tone is overly personal and unhelpful.  (Just imagine the uproar if someone had told Daniel Wallace and William Warren that they need psychological help!)  But since no one else has said so, consider it said.  I thank you for keeping your psychology-advice to yourself in the future.

      I was ready to say it, but not quite so eloquently :) . A little slow on the uptake, but I was a little surprised to see real solid textual studies dissed in such a dissmissive way.  (At the time, I did not think of it so much as psychological, simply diversionary.)

      Perhaps if a poster was actively correcting the textual establishment on a dozen issues, they might get upset with James for focusing on one.   Yet who is correcting a dozen ?  Maybe, hypothetically, Jan Krans could fault James for not knowing the ins and outs of Erasmus and Beza flawlessly on the ending (note: hypothetical), but I doubt that he would insult James on the work that he actually does, which is pioneering plus.  

      The resurrection account of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark (aka: the last 12 verses, the ending of Mark)  is definitely historically in the Top 5 of Bible text variants, and James has pioneered mightily, and been complimented for his efforts by many.  Even when agreement is only partial (as, e.g Maurice Robinson, who agrees with much of James on his textual and early writer analysis but not the theories of variant formulation.  And I concur with Maurice there.).  Dearsay, some with the traditional Hortian perspective of exclusion probably give at least grudging acknowledgment to what they have learned from the efforts of James on these 12 verses.  Often, I believe, if you learn one issue extremely well, the carry-over to 100 hundred issues can be enormous, and I believe that James is actually an example of this wide ranging perspective developed out of the implications of a singular study.

      Personally, I have had a couple of criticisms of the work of James, once how he used a hypothetical (Codex Washingtonianus was involved, if I remember) to make an argument sans real substance.  And I noticed that James seemed to tone down that analysis by analogy and even critiqued such concepts when used in reverse .. good job James !  The big disagreement is the question of variant origins, we have tussled and grustled, but for now that is for another day, another way.

      Generally the moderation here is quite good, and appreciated, and I realize that freedom of expression is important, but when a puerile attempt is made to shut up a deep question with a type of psycho-babble, count me in as one that protesteth.

      On this one I would like to give James 100% support, without diverting the forum too much unnecessarily away from the Topics du Jour.

      Steven Avery
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