Re: Eusebius - Gospel Problems and Solutions
It's good to see you posting here again!
I haven't bought it but I intend to. I read as much as I could at the Amazon preview. The presentation of "Ad Marinum" is fuller than anything that has preceded it -- including Kelhoffer's essay -- and really sheds a new light on some of his statements. I just obtained, through an interlibrary loan, "St. Ambrose - Commentary on Luke" by Ide M. Ni Riain, and it is clear (as I think a chapter in Roger's book shows) that Ambrose borrowed a lot from "Ad Marinum," especially toward the end of his Commentary on Luke. Ambrose completely accepted the Two-Mary-Magdalenes idea.
There's something that I really want to look into once I have the book; perhaps you already can verify or cancel this idea: from what I have managed to read, it looks like when Eusebius offered Option A and Option B as two possible solutions to a difficulty, Option A is *never* the option which he ends up directly advocating; he mentions Option A as if it is on the Menu of Possibilities, but he ends up recommending Option B as the one he finds more satisfying. Have you seen any exceptions to this?
Previously, I have thought that when Eusebius answered Marinus' question about how to harmonize Mt. and Mk.'s statements about the time of the resurrection, he began with the view that he himself preferred -- that is, that Mk. 16:9 is part of a spurious passage -- and then mentioned another option -- that is, that Mk. 16:9 should be retained and harmonized via the addition of a comma -- as a concession to Marinus' situation (in which 16:9 was already accepted), which he had deduced from the question. But now I am strongly leaning toward the interpretation that Eusebius, when he wrote "Ad Marinum," favored the inclusion of Mk. 16:9-20, and that when he appears to frame "what might be said by someone who rejects the passage," that is no pretense. This would imply that at some point, Eusebius changed his mind -- either he made the Canons while rejecting Mk. 16:9-20 and then included the passage, or else he wrote "Ad Marinum" while accepting Mk. 16:9-20 and then developed the Canons after deciding to reject the passage.
As you know, Hort and Burgon both suspected that Eusebius had borrowed from Origen at the part of "Ad Marinum" where Eusebius says that a person who rejects the passage might say that it is not in all manuscripts, or at least not in the accurate ones, and could be spurious inasmuch as it seems to contradict the other Gospel-accounts. What do you think about that, especially in light of Eusebius' own uncalled-for allusion to Mk. 16:9 a little further on in the composition (in the statement that some copies of Mark mention that Jesus had cast out seven demons out of Mary Magdalene)?
Yours in Christ,
James Snapp, Jr.