Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:48 am

Martin Klatt wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:11 am
With some struggling you could surmise the Maria with Jacob and Joses as sons could be the mother of Jesus, but why did Mark not tell us directly?
I have puzzled over this datum for a long time now. John 19.25b-27 just cuts to the chase and says that Jesus' mother was there at the cross. (Acts 1.14 has Jesus' mother as already part of the Jerusalem church right from the beginning.) While I am convinced that the gospel of John betrays knowledge of the gospel of Mark (at least to some extent), I am not convinced that the other gospels were John's only sources for the story.

Maybe Mark did not know that this Mary, mother of James and Joses, was the same Mary as the one in Mark 6.1-6a. Maybe Mark knew it, but had a vendetta against the family of Jesus and did not want to advertise that his mother was weeping for her son at the cross. Maybe Mark invented the second Mary as a replacement for Jesus' mother (biological family versus sectarian family). Maybe the overlap of names (Mary, James, Joses) is just a big coincidence.

It is definitely a question to be answered.
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Charles Wilson
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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Charles Wilson » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:03 am

Martin Klatt wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:11 am
Salome is another paratrooper. Who is she? The only Salome in relevant history could be the daughter of Herod who did the dance that sealed John the Baptist's fate, but how does that connect with this story?
Martin --

Your other question are very good and important. On this one, there was another Salome - 2 in fact. I believe they are very important to the story that appears in the Gospels:

1. "Salome, who was called Alexandra by the Greeks"
2. Another "Salome", NOT called Alexandra by the Greeks.

This is Hasmonean History and it is important enough that Josephus has to hide (Lie) about the True History. The Hasmoneans lay claim to being the "Leading Group" in the Priesthood and Rulership. A FALSE claim of Racial Impurity is laid at their feet and the Smear is leveled at succeeding generations.

Alexander Jannaeus is freed from prison by the wife of his brother. The brother dies and it is assumed that Jannaeus married his brother's wife in Levirite ceremony. Josephus nowhere explicitly states that this was done but later tells the story as "Alexandra did this..." and "Alexandra did that...".

Luke 2:

[36] And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phan'u-el, of the tribe of Asher; she was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years from her virginity,
[37] and as a widow till she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day.
[38] And coming up at that very hour she gave thanks to God, and spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.

I believe that this is "Queen Salome" who ascended the Throne in 76 BCE at the death of her husband Jannaeus. Thus, "Salome" is VERY important to the NT Story.

CW

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:08 am

Martin Klatt wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:11 am
Hmm, I missed out on the ongoing speculations what didn't happen in the text. I am curious about what the text can tell us about the motivation of the women going to the tomb. They first appear at the cross and are identified with names but who they are baffles me. With some struggling you could surmise the Maria with Jacob and Joses as sons could be the mother of Jesus, but why did Mark not tell us directly? The other ladies are a mystery. Now I know Maria Magdalene developed a myth of her own later on but in this gospel she is parachuted in, who is she? Salome is another paratrooper. Who is she? The only Salome in relevant history could be the daughter of Herod who did the dance that sealed John the Baptist's fate, but how does that connect with this story? Additionally I am puzzled by their behaviour in this story. They first watch crucifixion in the distance, then they follow Joseph of Arimathea to see where Jesus is stashed, but not to help so presumably secretly. Then days later they team up again for a mission to the tomb. It all sounds like a stealthy mission. We know that they brought the smelly stuff, but why would they need to anoint him so lavishly if he is dead for three days, a bit late for such an action ? What is going on in Denmark?
Incidentally, I love your characterization of these women as parachuting into the story. :D
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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:15 am

Charles Wilson wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:03 am
Your other questions are very good and important. On this one, there was another Salome - 2 in fact. I believe they are very important to the story that appears in the Gospels:

1. "Salome, who was called Alexandra by the Greeks"
2. Another "Salome", NOT called Alexandra by the Greeks.
Salome was apparently the second most popular female name in Palestine, after Mary. We know literally nothing personally about the Salome in Mark 15.40 and 16.1 except her name and the names of two of her friends (Mary, both of them). If our author intended this Salome to be mentally linked with some other Salome in history, s/he did a terrible job of making the link, leaving exactly zero clues.
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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Charles Wilson » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:38 am

As usual, Ben, I have no argument with that. It's why the Luke fragment is important. This may have meaning for the construction of the NT but that discussion is for another day. Same with John. Same with Matthew.

Don't be irritated here, OK? You know my views of the Empty Tomb. Why Mark included "Salome" is anybody's guess. I do believe that the "Alabaster Flask" Motif goes back to Jannaeus and Salome. FWIW, while we're verifying my Full Mooner credentials, I believe that the Empty Tomb goes back to Pliny the Younger and Tacitus. Whether THEY had knowledge of "Queen Salome" and used it here, I dunno.

The question Martin Klatt posed was concerning the use of "Salome". It's a good question among his other questions. There are other "Salome" characters. Maybe someone else can piece together the Data and derive some True conclusions.

You are correct here and it is good to have the added Data.

CW

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:40 am

Ulan wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:05 am
Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 7:09 am
Probably I'm discussing here because I believe that someone misunderstands Paul and Mark when he assumes that one of them may have been interested in historical evidence. My view is that both would invent a lot to prove that Jesus died according to the scriptures or because of our sins, but not the simple historical fact that he died.
And this distinction is completely irrelevant to what I say. Mark introduces named figures into his story. I myself said that I don't think the story is historical, but this doesn't matter regarding this simple, factual observation. Whether the witnesses are just witnesses within a story or in a historical context is a completely separate question. I have always maintained the view that it makes no difference at all to the stories we have if they describe fictional or historical processes. We cannot really decide this from the stories, and definitely not from Mark.
Sorry, I should have said biographical facts of a historical or fictional person, but I thought it's clear that we talk about the dying, burying and raising of Jesus, what is the starting point of our discussion (Ken's view).


Ulan wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:05 am
Or, as Ben said, you put too much weight into the word "witness". For example, detective stories are full of witnesses, even if they never existed.
...
There's no difference between these roles. Someone who watches is a witness. You see that this is important to Mark, because, unlike all other named figures in chapter 15, these women are only mentioned and named in their role of witnessing the death and the burial, and they seem to be the only ones to know where the tomb was. They then act in chapter 16.
It's simply what Mark said. To describe what the women are doing he used significantly the verb "watch" (θεωρέω – theóreó) - 3 of 7 occurences in GMark – and in contrast to many many occurences of „looking“ and „seeing“. You may imagine that he never used „witnessing“ regarding the women.

3:11 And whenever the unclean spirits watched him, they fell down before him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.” 12 And he strictly ordered them not to make him known.
5:15 And they came to Jesus and watched the demon-possessed man, the one who had had the legion, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid.
5:38 They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus watched a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 And when he had entered, he said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping?
12:41 And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums.
15:40 There were also women watching from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome.
15:47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses watched where he was laid.
16:4 And looking up, they watched that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large.

I'm inclined to think that in the context of GMark it means something like „looking with a sharp eye and inner aloofness“.

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Ulan » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:49 am

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:40 am
It's simply what Mark said. To describe what the women are doing he used significantly the verb "watch" (θεωρέω – theóreó) - 3 of 7 occurences in GMark – and in contrast to many many occurences of „looking“ and „seeing“. You may imagine that he never used „witnessing“ regarding the women.
I guess Ben war right. "To be witness to something" in English just means "to see something happen". Someone who watches something certainly sees something happen.

Of course, there's also the meaning in the law context, but that doesn't apply here.

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:05 pm

Ulan wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:49 am
Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:40 am
It's simply what Mark said. To describe what the women are doing he used significantly the verb "watch" (θεωρέω – theóreó) - 3 of 7 occurences in GMark – and in contrast to many many occurences of „looking“ and „seeing“. You may imagine that he never used „witnessing“ regarding the women.
I guess Ben war right. "To be witness to something" in English just means "to see something happen". Someone who watches something certainly sees something happen.

Of course, there's also the meaning in the law context, but that doesn't apply here.
Fine. But my impression was that neither Ken understood witness in this sense nor you when you spoke about a qualified witness ("someone who you can ask").
Ken Olson wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:29 am
So the creed tells that the Jesus appeared after his resurrection to Cephas and the twelve, but who were the witnesses to the earlier parts? What witnesses establish that (1) he died, (2) he was buried, and (3), that he was raised on the third day?

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Ulan » Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:25 pm

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:05 pm
Ulan wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:49 am
Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:40 am
It's simply what Mark said. To describe what the women are doing he used significantly the verb "watch" (θεωρέω – theóreó) - 3 of 7 occurences in GMark – and in contrast to many many occurences of „looking“ and „seeing“. You may imagine that he never used „witnessing“ regarding the women.
I guess Ben war right. "To be witness to something" in English just means "to see something happen". Someone who watches something certainly sees something happen.

Of course, there's also the meaning in the law context, but that doesn't apply here.
Fine. But my impression was that neither Ken understood witness in this sense nor you when you spoke about a qualified witness ("someone who you can ask").
Ken Olson wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:29 am
So the creed tells that the Jesus appeared after his resurrection to Cephas and the twelve, but who were the witnesses to the earlier parts? What witnesses establish that (1) he died, (2) he was buried, and (3), that he was raised on the third day?
"Someone you can ask" was meant in a general way by me. If you really want to look behind the story, you have a name as a lead in this case. What this exactly means depends on whether the story was real or it wasn't. Giving names to unique figures is usually done for a purpose though. The purpose is easy to see if we look at a real story, and it gets more complicated when we come to invented stories with invented characters. Mark doesn't put the effort into naming most characters he has act. He does it with some though, and if we look at an invented story, the reason why certain characters have names needs an explanation, which is not exactly easy in some cases.

And Ken's question is at first view rather straightforward. The answer to that question he poses is quite clear: In gMark, that's Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses for all 3 points, plus Salome for two of them (plus maybe Joseph of Arimathaea for point 2). This is a rather short list. Of course, we already dealt with the point that they didn't exactly see the raised Jesus in gMark, but only indirect evidence, so no need to get back to this point.

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Re: Mark 16 and the silence of the women: The disciples redeemed?

Post by Martin Klatt » Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:11 am

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Last edited by Martin Klatt on Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:33 am, edited 8 times in total.
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