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Addenda (2)


Addendum D

Return to Narratives (3)

Caesarea Philippi: Mark 8:29-33
and Parallels

 

    

Matthew 16:15-23

Mark 8:29-33

Luke 9:20-22

15[Jesus] said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16Simon Peter answered, 
“You are the Messiah [or, the Christ], 

the Son of the living God.”
29[Jesus] asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, 
“You are the Messiah [or, the Christ].”
     
20He said to them, “But 
who do you say that I  am?” Peter answered, 
      “The Messiah [or the Christ] 
of God.”
    
17And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. 18And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church (ekklêsia), and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
20Then he sternly ordered the disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah. 30And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone.
21He sternly ordered and commanded them not to tell anyone,
  21From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 

     

 31Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32He said all this quite openly.   22saying, “The Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”

     
     

22And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you.” And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.

       
     

23But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
     
33But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
     

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Addendum E

Caesarea Philippi: The Messianic Secret

 

The pattern of secrecy is evident from these instances:
   •  Jesus imposes secrecy upon the mentally ill man who recognizes him as “the Holy One of God” (Mark 1:23-25). 
   •  When “unclean spirits” fall down before him and shout, “You are the Son of God!” he orders them not to make him known (Mark 3:11-12). 
   •  When Peter acknowledges him as Messiah, Jesus orders him to tell no one.
   •  Following the transfiguration experience, when his unique sonship is revealed to Peter, James and John, he orders them to tell no one “until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead” (Mark 9:2-9). 
   •  The same pattern is evident with a number of healings: silence is imposed upon the leper who was healed (Mark 1:44). When Jesus raises the daughter of Jairus (Mark 5:22-24, 35-43) he instructs them to tell no one, and similarly with the healing of the deaf mute man (Mark 7:32-36). 
   •  Curiously, when the demented man with “legion” proclaims that Jesus is “Son of the Most High God” (Mark 5:7), Jesus does not silence him, but permits and even encourages him to tell about his healing—perhaps because Jesus was across the Sea of Galilee in gentile territory. 
   •  Certain teachings are reserved to the circle of the Twelve, including the mystery of the kingdom of God (Mark 4:11, 33-34).   
   •  In Mark 9:30-31 Jesus passes through Galilee, and does not want anyone to know it.

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Addendum F

“That Which Is Holy . . .  Pearls Before Swine”

(Matthew 7:6)

 

“Do not give what is holy to dogs; and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under foot and turn and maul you.” This text has come down to us without its original frame, and thus its meaning remains obscure. What was the treasure which Jesus thought was not to be exposed to unappreciative listeners? 
   •  Some end-of-time teaching?
   •  Advice for his disciples to be cautious about disclosing some esoteric teaching?
   •  His imminent suffering as a ransom for many, as in Mark 10:45?
   •  His unique relationship to God, along the lines of the Q passage in Matthew 11:25-27 || Luke 10:21-22?

Whatever the uncertainties, it seems likely:
   •  That Jesus would challenge his listeners to faith, in a way appropriate to their level of readiness; and
   •  That he would not gratuitously expect an unreceptive person to respond to some of his “hard teachings,” such as taking up your cross or going the second mile or avoiding lustful thoughts.
     

Return to Sayings (3b)

Addendum G

“Our Father . . . ”

(Matthew 6:9)

 

God as father was surely an important part of Jesus’ message, but the synoptic gospels are uneven in their use of the word, Mark using father of God just 4 times; Luke, 17 times; but Matthew using it 45 times. (Even this number is modest in comparison to the 118 times in the Fourth Gospel!) The disproportionately large number in Matthew might suggest the presence of yet another editorial tendency in that gospel; compare Matthew’s Tendencies (1).

      

Return to Sayings (3b)

 

Addendum H

A Note on The Origin of the 
Six Contrasts

If we have assigned most of Matthew 5:17-20 to the author himself, with the exception of the Q material, what are we to make of the origin of the six contrasts which follow?

Our first impulse may be to hear the dissonance between the Torah-affirming tone of 5:17-20 and the Torah-relativizing tone of the six contrasts in 5:21-47, and to conclude that if Matthew is responsible for the former, then Jesus must be responsible for the revolutionary outlook of the latter. But we cannot assume that the answer is quite that simple. 
     

Analysis of the Six Contrasts. 

This is the basic formula introducing each contrast (used in contrasts 2, 5 and 6):

You have heard that it was said . . . . But I say to you . . . . 

We find an expanded form (a) in contrasts 1 and 4, and an abbreviated form (b) in contrast 3:

(a) You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times . . . .  But I say to you . . . . 

(b) It was also said . . . . But I say to you . . . . 

The shape of the structure is summarized below:

   
 

The Contrasts

Formula

Sources

1

Prohibition of murder <—> 
  
Warning against anger and hate
You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times . . . . But I say to you . . . . Special Matthew: 5:21-24
Q: 5:25-26 || Luke 12:57-59 

2

Prohibition of adultery <—>
   Warning against lustful thoughts
You have heard that it was said . . . . But I say to you . . . .  Special Matthew: 5:27-28 
Mark: Matthew 5:29-30 || Mark 9:43-48

3
   

The regulation of divorce  <—> The permanence of marriage (equal respect of persons) It was also said . . . . But I say to you . . . .  Special Matthew: 5:31
Mark: Matthew 5:32 || Mark 10:11-12    

4
   

Oaths, as assurance of truth telling <—> 
   No oaths: integrity, as assurance of the truth
Again, You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times . . . . But I say to you . . .  Special Matthew: 5:33-37
    (no ||’s)

5
   

Lex talionis: equal retaliation as the way of resolving disputes <—> Reconciliation through creative use of suffering You have heard that it was said . . . . But I say to you . . . .  Special Matthew:
5:38-39a, 41
Q: 5:39b-40, 42 || Luke 6:29-30

6
   

Loving the neighbor and hating one’s enemy <—> Loving one’s enemy You have heard that it was said . . . . But I say to you . . . .  Special Matthew:
5:43, 45
Q: 5:44, 46-47 || Luke 6:27-28, 32-35   

     

Two points are evident:

   •  The formula, You have heard that it was said . . . . But I say to you . . . , which forms the contrast, is found exclusively in Matthew; its absence from parallel passages in Mark and Luke suggests that the formula is editorial, especially since no contrast is evident in those gospels. The closest we come to “But I say to you . . . (egô de legô humin)” is in Luke 6:27, “But I say to you that listen . . .” (alla humin legô tois akouousin), where however there is no contrast between the old law and the new. 

   •  Furthermore, the parallels in Mark and Luke are distributed over various parts of those gospels, and not preserved in a single set of antithetical sayings. A glance at these parallel passages will show no signs of a framework of contrasts.
     

We conclude that it is the author of Matthew who has provided the framework of the six contrasts, not Mark or Q, and probably not Matthew’s special sources. Into this framework he has brought together texts from his sources and supplied the formula. While much if not most of what we find in Matthew 5:21-47 reflects what Jesus taught, Matthew has probably sharpened the contrast between the old Law and the new by the way in which he has incorporated this material into his framework.

     

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