"The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Peter

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JoeWallack
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"The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Peter

Post by JoeWallack » Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:18 am

JW:
Included in the locked up vault at FRDB (which is being handled by top women) is my Award winning Thread, "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Peter, where I demonstrate, and than some, that a primary literary objective of "Mark" was to discredit Peter as supposed witness to Jesus.

Most Believers will start with the conclusion that "Mark" credited Peter with historical witness to Jesus (mainly relying consciously or unconsciously on what "Mark" did not write) so it makes no difference to them how much evidence I present the other Way. Non-believers are much more open to the question, and the trend is definitely moving towards my conclusion, but I think most are still not convinced. What follows is my initial outline of evidence that "Mark" has a primary theme of discrediting Peter. Note that in order to try and support a primary theme theory, one must show quality and quantity:

Stage 1 of "The Simontic Problem" = An Inventory of "Mark's" Negative Casting of Peter:

Major Negative Casting:
  • 1) 4:15 The Parable of the Sower specifically refers to Peter as in the category of Disciple Failure.

    2) 8:32 Peter is presented as the Opposition to the Passion.

    3) 14:30 Jesus predicts that Peter will Deny him Three times.

    4) 14:53-72 Peter Denies Jesus Three times.
Minor Negative Casting:
  • 1) 1:29-31 Sickness in Simon's house.

    2) 3:16 Jesus gives Simon an extra name, "Peter".

    3) 6:3 The name "Simon" is assigned to a brother of Jesus who is presented unfavorably.

    4) 14:1-9 A Simon is presented as a Leper.

    5) 14:37 Jesus demotes Peter by using his pre-Disciple name, "Simon" to address him.

    6) 14:34-42 Peter Fails to Watch out for Jesus.

    7) 14:72 Peter mourns the loss of his life for Denying Jesus.

    8) 15:21 Peter Simon is figuratively replaced as Leader of Jesus' followers.
The next issue I'll look at in this Thread is "Mark's" use of the Greek word for "rebuke". How does "Mark" use the offending word in general and specifically for Peter?

The extent to which "Mark" discredits Peter as supposed historical witness to Jesus is important for a number of reasons. One is in the context of the MJ/HJ/AJ debate. The model for HJ is a movement from historical witness to Jesus to non-historical witness to Jesus. The model for MJ is a movement from non-historical witness to Jesus to claimed historical witness to Jesus. HJ's model has to claim a historical gospel narrative that existed before "Mark" but there is nothing extant to support that. The objective analysis than is based on what is extant which is in the following order:
  • 1) Paul

    2) "Mark"

    3) "Matthew"

    4) "Luke"

    5) "John"
Literary Criticism makes clear that the movement here is from non-historical witness to Jesus, to supposed historical witness to Jesus. This supports MJ/AJ.


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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Thu Dec 12, 2013 2:47 am

I doubt a little bit that your conclusion is right. If I want then I´m able to read Mark' s gospel in a allegorical way. In this point of view I can understand the figure of Simon as a literary character. The same goes for James and John. No problem here. But if it's true that Mark was mocking the pillars then there must be a historical context.

Was Mark discrediting the pillars? It seems so. I share your understanding about the negative castings listed above and it´s an important point to me that Mark mocked only the pillars in an individual case and not for example Andreas or an other disciple. Therefore Mark is one of the best witnesses for the pillars.

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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Peter Kirby » Thu Dec 12, 2013 3:06 am

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:I doubt a little bit that your conclusion is right. If I want then I´m able to read Mark' s gospel in a allegorical way. In this point of view I can understand the figure of Simon as a literary character. The same goes for James and John. No problem here. But if it's true that Mark was mocking the pillars then there must be a historical context.

Was Mark discrediting the pillars? It seems so. I share your understanding about the negative castings listed above and it´s an important point to me that Mark mocked only the pillars in an individual case and not for example Andreas or an other disciple. Therefore Mark is one of the best witnesses for the pillars.
Perhaps the pillars could be mocked as a stand-in for a group that claimed them as founders, figureheads, or important characters in the allegory.

(If as founders, perhaps they had not yet been integrated into the story of Jesus before the writing of the Gospels. For example, is it possible that Simon Peter in the Gospel was based on a 2nd century leader named Symeon, son of Clopas?)

Similarly, Ebion (a fictional person?) and Cerinthus (another fictional person?) can be mocked by the heresiologists as stand-ins for Ebionites and Cerinthians.

Or, in the Gospel of John, Thomas is made into the doubter and converted to Johannine Christianity in a resurrection story because there are rival groups claiming Thomas as their fountain of wisdom (and, to judge from the Gospel of Thomas, they don't seem to regard Jesus as God or even as Christ). None of this requires that either GJohn or GThomas are presented as more than fiction.
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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Thu Dec 12, 2013 3:59 am

Peter Kirby wrote: Perhaps the pillars could be mocked as a stand-in for a group that claimed them as founders, figureheads, or important characters in the allegory.
This could be true. But in every option that claim must exist before Mark und that´s a little stumbling block to me. It all would be so easy, if that would not be the case :mrgreen:

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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Blood » Thu Dec 12, 2013 6:10 am

JoeWallack wrote:JW:
Included in the locked up vault at FRDB (which is being handled by top women) is my Award winning Thread, "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Peter, where I demonstrate, and than some, that a primary literary objective of "Mark" was to discredit Peter as supposed witness to Jesus.
You could be right, but I don't think Mark was thinking in those terms. He's writing a literary story about the son of God who had taken on human form. To heighten the tension in the story, he makes everyone, even the son of God's disciples, skeptical about his divinity and his miracles.
“The only sensible response to fragmented, slowly but randomly accruing evidence is radical open-mindedness. A single, simple explanation for a historical event is generally a failure of imagination, not a triumph of induction.” William H.C. Propp

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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by JoeWallack » Fri Dec 13, 2013 8:16 am

JW:
Time to test drive the new table feature here with a summary of "Mark's" use of "rebuke":

Verse Quote (ASV) Offending Word
1.23-25 And straightway there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus thou Nazarene? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. . 2008 [e] epetimēsen ἐπετίμησεν rebuked V-AIA-3S
3.11-12 And the unclean spirits, whensoever they beheld him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God. And he charged them much that they should not make him known. 2008 [e] epetima ἐπετίμα he rebuked V-IIA-3S
4.39 And he awoke, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. 2008 [e] epetimēsen ἐπετίμησεν he rebuked V-AIA-3S
8.29-30 And he asked them, But who say ye that I am? Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ. And he charged them that they should tell no man of him. s 2008 [e] epetimēsen ἐπετίμησεν he warned V-AIA-3S
8.31-32 And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders, and the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. And he spake the saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him. 2008 [e] epitiman ἐπιτιμᾶν to rebuke V-PNA
8.32-33 And he spake the saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him. But he turning about, and seeing his disciples, rebuked Peter, and saith, Get thee behind me, Satan; for thou mindest not the things of God, but the things of men. 2008 [e] epetimēsen ἐπετίμησεν he rebuked V-AIA-3S
9.25-26 And when Jesus saw that a multitude came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I command thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him. And having cried out, and torn him much, he came out: and [the boy] became as one dead; insomuch that the more part said, He is dead. 2008 [e] epetimēsen ἐπετίμησεν he rebuked V-AIA-3S
10.13-14 And they were bringing unto him little children, that he should touch them: and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was moved with indignation, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me; forbid them not: for to such belongeth the kingdom of God. 2008 [e] epetimēsan ἐπετίμησαν rebuked V-AIA-3P
10.46-49 And they come to Jericho: and as he went out from Jericho, with his disciples and a great multitude, the son of Timaeus, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the way side. And when he heard that it was Jesus the Nazarene, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me. And many rebuked him, that he should hold his peace: but he cried out the more a great deal, Thou son of David, have mercy on me. And Jesus stood still, and said, Call ye him. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good cheer: rise, he calleth thee. 2008 [e] epetimōn ἐπετίμων rebuked V-IIA-3P

JW:
A few preliminary comments. Besides the obvious that I really should be charging you guys for this, the objective comment is to note the contrived literary structure above (not from me, from "Mark"). "Mark" uses the offending word in 3 sets of 3 or a total of 9 times. The middle 3 is a son of sandwich with Jesus toasting Peter on the outsides and Peter's beef with Jesus on the inside. Peter is than explicitly identified as Satan. Extreme literary contrivance is evidence of fiction of course. As a side note, it is also good literary criticism evidence of Markan priority. The carefully crafted structure is intact in "Mark" but flawed in "Matthew" and "Luke".

If there is any evidence of the divine in the Christian Bible than it is the literary skill of this author. I have faith that the last thing ever said to Peter by Jesus was, "Now go home and get your fucking tackle box".


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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by stephan happy huller » Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:36 am

I have changed my mind about Peter after years of dogmatically following the idea that the Marcionite community 'hated' Peter. My suspicion now - there is no way to prove any of this regardless of what is claimed to explain matters - is that in at least some traditions (Clement of Alexandria) Peter's transformation is meant to illustrate that after baptism we become wholly new individuals. So for instance, it is my assumption that when Clement says that Jesus only baptized Peter there was a 'before' and 'after' in the gospel where before his baptism Peter was essentially stupid and then an 'after' where he had the 'divine soul' of Jesus within him. The Acts of Mark seems to use similar language for both Mark and Peter so it might be associated with a tradition where Peter was recognized to have Jesus's soul within him.

I am not sure that the earliest gospels always understood Peter to have 'failed' during the Passion.
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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Sat Dec 14, 2013 2:15 am

JoeWallack wrote: Time to test drive the new table feature here with a summary of "Mark's" use of "rebuke":
Thanks Joe, nice table
Peter Kirby wrote:
Perhaps the pillars could be mocked as a stand-in for a group that claimed them as founders, figureheads, or important characters in the allegory.
third scenario: There is a historical context but a jewish one. "Simon Peter" is not a historical Simon and not a stand-in for a early christian group. I had read somewhere that the name Simon derived from the hebrew word "Shema" that means “to hear” or “to listen" ("Sh'ma Yisrael"). So I can understand Simon as a figure that stand for ordinary Jews their beliefs had become problematic but can´t break away from a traditional understanding. It´s a little bit complicated and only a possibility that must be checked.

:whistling: :mrgreen:

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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Sun Dec 15, 2013 12:53 pm

The third scenario is not possible. So it's seems true that Mark was mocking the pillars. From this point of view it`s easy to say that the “little one” in Mark 9.38-42 is Paul (Παῦλος = „little”). I don't know that up to now.

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Re: "The Simontic Problem". "Mark's" Negative Casting of Pet

Post by stephan happy huller » Sun Dec 15, 2013 1:04 pm

I am not sure he was mocking the pillars. Mark is more likely subtly implying they weren't perfect ( cf the consistent reporting of this idea in the early heretics from Irenaeus and Tertullian). Mark however attained perfection with his second gospel
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