Sons of Thunder

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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Re: Sons of Thunder

Post by John2 » Thu Apr 14, 2016 7:32 pm

I've always liked the way the person who made the POCM website describes borrowing:
Go shopping for the healthful and refreshing beverage Mountain Dew, and up on the grocery shelf you'll see a number of drinks that are pretty similar to Dew. Sugar water drinks. Fizzy drinks. In aluminum cans. Twelve ounce cans. With pop tops.

Did the fine people at Mountain create Dew by copying the idea of putting fizzy sugar water in a twelve-ounce pop-top aluminum can from anyone in particular? From Coke? From Pepsi? Fanta? No they didn't. Fizzy sugar water in a twelve-ounce pop-top aluminum can is soda. The idea of soda is part of our culture. Dew looks like all the other soda drinks, not because it is a direct copy of any one of them, but because our modern culture has the idea of soda, and Dew is just another one. When a modern person makes a new soda, these are the things we put in.

At POCM, that's what "borrowing" is. Borrowing just means "Accepting and incorporating the ideas of your culture," or, "Absorbing the ideas of your culture."
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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Sons of Thunder

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Apr 03, 2020 9:45 am

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Mon Apr 11, 2016 11:07 am
First, the construct state of "sons" would normally be rendered as bene or some such, not boane. That weird oa is, well, weird.
Update: this part is less weird to me now:

John Lightfoot, A Commentary on the New Testament From the Talmud and Hebraica, comment on Mark 3.17:

See what Beza saith here. To which our very learned Hugh Broughton, a man very well exercised in these studies, replies: "The Jews to this very day pronounce Scheva by oa, as Noabhyim for Nebhyim. So Boanerges. When Theodore Beza will have it written Benerges, the very Jews themselves will defend our gospel."

Certainly, it is somewhat hard and bold to accuse the Scripture of St. Mark as corrupt for this manner of pronunciation, when, among the Jews, the pronouncing of some letters, vowels, and words was so different and indifferent, that they pronounced one way in Galilee, another way in Samaria, and another way in Judea. "And I remember (saith the famous Ludovicus de Dieu), that I heard the excellent Erpenius say, that he had it from the mouth of a very learned Maronite, that it could not be taught by any grammatical rules, and hardly by word of mouth, what sound Scheva hath among the Syrians."

That castle of noted fame which is called Masada in Josephus, Pliny, Solinus, and others in Strabo is Moasada, very agreeable to this our sound: They shew some scorched rocks about 'Moasada.' Where, without all controversy, he speaks of Masada.

I cannot speak to how the Jews of century XVII or the Syrians of any era pronounced their half vowel (the shewa), but I can verify the comparison with Masada:

Strabo, Geography 16.2.44: 44 Many other evidences are produced to show that the country is fiery; for near Moasada [Μοασάδα; = Μασάδα in Josephus, Wars 4.7.2 §399; Hebrew מְצָדָה, with the shewa] are to be seen rugged rocks that have been scorched, as also, in many places, fissures and ashy soil, and drops of pitch that emit foul odours to a great distance, and ruined settlements here and there; and therefore people believe the oft-repeated assertions of the local inhabitants, that there were once thirteen inhabited cities in that region of which Sodom was the metropolis, but that a circuit of about sixty stadia of that city escaped unharmed; and that by reason of earthquakes and of eruptions of fire and of hot waters containing asphalt and sulphur, the lake burst its bounds, and rocks were enveloped with fire; and, as for the cities, some were swallowed up and others were abandoned by such as were able to escape. But Eratosthenes says, on the contrary, that the country was a lake, and that most of it was uncovered by outbreaks, as was the case with the sea. [Link.]

Thus, the shewa in the Hebrew name Masada is rendered by the Greek vowels omicron and alpha, just as the shewa in the Semitic name presumed to stand behind Boanerges is rendered by the Greek vowels omicron and alpha.

I cannot claim that this transliteration is common, but at least it is not unheard of. I had thought it stood alone before.

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Re: Sons of Thunder

Post by John2 » Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:49 pm

That's very interesting, Ben. And while I take seriously what Papias says about Mark following Peter and his gospel reflecting Peter's teaching, and thus "bene" would make sense under the assumption that Peter taught in Hebrew, at the same time it's hard for me to let go of MacDonald's idea that there is (also) something Homeric going on here.

The reason why I can't let go of the Homeric angle is that MacDonald outlines many other instances of possible Homeric mimesis in Mark and how such was standard for Greek writers at the time. And I can see how a Gentile convert and follower of Peter could have a foot in both worlds (pagan and Jewish Christian). And in other cases you've suggested before about the LXX being a source for things MacDonald views as being Homeric, if I haven't mentioned it before, I'm (still) thinking that maybe Mark could have been aware that such LXX passages were similar to passages from Homer and that you and MacDonald could be right. In other words, maybe these two worlds literally collide in the gospel of Mark, as a consequence of the pagan and Jewish Christian worlds colliding in Mark himself.
I'm just walking around, your city is a wonder town.

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