One of Luke’s changes to the Gethsemane account found in the Gospel of Mark was in the way he chose to describe the kiss of Judas.
Luke changes the wording in Mark in preference for the same wording in the Greek Septuagint uses in Genesis to picture Jacob kissing his father Isaac in deceit. (This is another tidbit I picked up from Jenny Read-Heimerdinger and Josep Rius-Camps article I drew on in my first Ennaus post.)
One can compare the Greek words in the Greek-English interlinear Septuagint available here, but the English translations are suggestive enough in this quick blog context:
And he came hear and kissed him (Genesis 27:27)
And drew near to Jesus to kiss him (Luke 22:47) Continue reading “More on Luke’s use of Genesis”
It is sometimes said that the women followers of Jesus showed more resolution and loyalty than the male disciples of Jesus. One scene often pointed to as a demonstration of this claim is the women staying within range of Jesus on the cross while the other disciples had either betrayed him, fled for their lives or denied him.
There were also women looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the Younger and of Joses (widely understood to be Jesus’ mother – c.f. Mark 6:5), and Salome (Mark 15:40)
This claim that the women were in some way “more worthy” than their male counterparts, at least as it applies to the Gospel of Mark, misreads Mark’s narrative completely. The correct understanding of Mark’s sources here also has major implications for how we understand the most fundamental things about the gospel story itself. Continue reading “The women at the cross”
The Jesus in Gethsemane story has always been one of the most moving episodes in religious movies. It is also a literary motif that has a long pedigree and would have been well known to any author who had learned to read and write Greek and who knew Jewish writings.
The basic structure and thematic units of the story are prominent in both “classical” Greek and Hebrew literature. It is quite likely one of those stories that may have fallen easily into place in an author’s mind without necessarily consciously imitating another — like a modern superhero drama can be unconsciously built on the motif of a Jesus-like saviour figure.
There are approx ten or more significant sequential parts that make up this motif: Continue reading “Odysseus, Moses and Jesus in Gethsemane”
Following are the different criteria lists used by three authors who have studied literary borrowings within the gospels and Acts: Allison, Clark and MacDonald.
Included are two extracts that discuss the ancient literary expectations and customs of authors borrowing from past masters.
Names and titles are hyperlinked: Continue reading “3 criteria lists for literary borrowing”
I have been absent from web discussions for some time now and may be the last one to notice Dennis MacDonald’s reply to critics of “mimesis criticism” — his work arguing that the Gospel of Mark is as much an imitation and transvaluation of Homeric characters as it is of those from the Jewish scriptures.
It is well worth reading. Not least his concluding pages suggesting a more subtle reason for many of the objections raised against his work.
If anyone else apart from me is also late to this reply, check it out at DRM’s website — look for the article there titled My Turn.
(I’ve discussed aspects of MacDonald’s work elsewhere on this blog some time back.)
One more catch-up link for this new trial blog: notes I made from Dennis MacDonald’s book on the Gospel of Mark and Homeric epics. One plan for the future would be to go have checkboxes against each comparison indicating which criteria are met, and to what extent. I’m not confident that all of my own comparisons would go very far — I’m sure some are way “out there” but hey, why not push an idea to its limits and see what happens? It would be interesting to checkbox each one against the criteria some time.
gospel+of+mark, homer, iliad, odyssey, literary+mimesis, intertextuality