What is the door of Jesus?

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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Secret Alias
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by Secret Alias » Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:37 pm

Again I have to make mention of this basic fact - first noticed by me when I read Gaster's abysmal translation of Abu'l Fath -

bāḇā 1 gate, gateway OfAGen, Palmyrene, JBA, Man. TAD A4.4R.6 : הא שמהת גבריא זי אשתכחו בבבא בנא ואתחדו ‏ here are the names of the men who were found and seized at the gate in GN. BT BB 58a(35) : ליתיב אבבא ולידין דינא ‏ let him sit at the gate and judge the case. (a) of a city (a.1) see s.v. bbˀ dˀbwlˀ JBA. (b) of a residential structure Com. TAD B3.11 R.4 : מערב שמש לה הו בבא זילך למנפק ‏ on its west is your doorway for exiting. (b.1) door Com. BT MQ 25a(32) : פרום באבי ואפקוה ‏ they hacked down the doors and removed it [i.e. the bed]. (c) of another structure Com. NsaqPap 26.V.7 : כען אנת גברן כשירן מני בין בביא חסין ינטרו ‏ now assign reliable men to firmly guard among the entryways (to the port?/wharf?). (c.1) sluice gate JBA. BT MQ 10b(24) : פתח חד באבא ‏ he opened one sluice gate. (c.2) see s.vv. bbˀ dˀqlydˀ , bb nhrˀ JBA.

2 papa, father Sam. Syr, Man. KwD2 45:16 . https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baba_Rabba
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
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Joseph D. L.
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by Joseph D. L. » Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:04 pm

Secret Alias wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:37 pm
Again I have to make mention of this basic fact - first noticed by me when I read Gaster's abysmal translation of Abu'l Fath -

bāḇā 1 gate, gateway OfAGen, Palmyrene, JBA, Man. TAD A4.4R.6 : הא שמהת גבריא זי אשתכחו בבבא בנא ואתחדו ‏ here are the names of the men who were found and seized at the gate in GN. BT BB 58a(35) : ליתיב אבבא ולידין דינא ‏ let him sit at the gate and judge the case. (a) of a city (a.1) see s.v. bbˀ dˀbwlˀ JBA. (b) of a residential structure Com. TAD B3.11 R.4 : מערב שמש לה הו בבא זילך למנפק ‏ on its west is your doorway for exiting. (b.1) door Com. BT MQ 25a(32) : פרום באבי ואפקוה ‏ they hacked down the doors and removed it [i.e. the bed]. (c) of another structure Com. NsaqPap 26.V.7 : כען אנת גברן כשירן מני בין בביא חסין ינטרו ‏ now assign reliable men to firmly guard among the entryways (to the port?/wharf?). (c.1) sluice gate JBA. BT MQ 10b(24) : פתח חד באבא ‏ he opened one sluice gate. (c.2) see s.vv. bbˀ dˀqlydˀ , bb nhrˀ JBA.

2 papa, father Sam. Syr, Man. KwD2 45:16 . https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baba_Rabba
Could this be why Polycarp underwent a pseudo-crucifixion at his martyrdom? To emphasize his role as father (papa) and door/gate (bāḇā) of the Church (Lord's house)?

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Secret Alias
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by Secret Alias » Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:34 pm

I think it's one or the other ... but what do I know.
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
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DCHindley
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by DCHindley » Sat Jun 09, 2018 6:55 pm

John2 wrote:Sat Jun 09, 2018 4:09 pm
It is not necessary my quote of Hippolitus to realize that "the gate of Jesus is the Saviour" implies that the "Saviour":
1) is not God;
2) is a distinct being from "Jesus". Probably Christ.
But James doesn't say "it" (i.e., the gate) is the Savior, he says "he" (i.e., Jesus) is the Savior....
Ben has already responded to this post, but I was curious to see what the grammar looks like so here is the passage sliced and diced into itty bitty bytes:

12) The aforesaid scribes and Pharisees therefore placed James upon the pinnacle of the temple 12) Εστησαν ουν οι προειρημενοι γραμματεις και φαρισαιοι τον Ιακωβον επι το πτερυγιον του ναου,
and cried out to him and said: και εκραξαν αυτω και ειπον·
Just one, Δικαιε,
in whom we ought all to have confidence, ω παντες πειθεσθαι οφειλομεν,
forasmuch as the people are led astray after Jesus, the crucified one, επει ο λαος πλαναται οπισω Ιησου του σταυρωθεντος,
declare to us what the gate of Jesus (is). απαγγειλον ημιν τις () η θυρα του Ιησου.
13) And he answered with a loud voice: 13) Και απεκρινατο φωνη μεγαλη·
Why do you ask me concerning Jesus, the son of man? Τι με επερωτατε περι Ιησου του υιου του ανθρωπου;
He himself sits in heaven at the right hand of the great power, και αυτος καθηται εν τω ουρανω εκ δεξιων της μεγαλης δυναμεως,
and is about to come upon the clouds of heaven! και μελλει ερχεσθαι επι των νεφελων του ουρανου.

Hmmm ... The phrases are often cryptic IMHO.

The S&Ps equate Jesus the crucified (one) with someone who leads the people astray.

Then the S&Ps ask Jacob the Just to confirm the moral [i.e., the gate/portal to understanding*] they think should be learned from the fact that leading people astray to participate in seditious activity lead to his execution. Execution for sedition has invalidated any claims he once had to be eligible to become God's anointed ruler on earth.**

On the other hand, when asked to affirm the moral the S&Ps attached to the circumstances of Jesus' death, Jacob the Just responds to assert that, to the contrary, the moral of Jesus' crucifixion should be that Jesus is, because of that crucifixion, now in a position of heavenly power, and will "come" (ερχεσθαι) upon the clouds of heaven.*** This reflects a more complex form of the Jesus story where he has, through his crucifixion, fulfilled a divine mission commissioned by God himself. John 19:30 phrased it as τετέλεσται, "Mission accomplished!" Whereupon "he bowed his head and gave up his spirit."

DCH

*In the phrase "declare to us what the gate of Jesus (is)" there is no form of the verb "to be" (I used parentheses) in the passage, although it is very common for this verb to be assumed in what would otherwise be a sentence fragment.

**This kind of reasoning is common in the government apparatus of authoritarian regimes throughout history. All they have to do is take out any and all troublemakers, subjecting them to gruesome public deaths, to put a little fear into the common people.

***This is the imagery used of the glorious coming of Jesus on the clouds that, I think, is found in all four canonical Gospels and Acts and even Revelation 1:7. However, when Paul speaks of Jesus' "coming" he uses a form of the word "royal/grand/fortuitous appearance" (παρουσία, once modified by καταβήσεται, "to go down") instead of "coming" (ἐρχόμενον, "movement from here to there" or vice versa). That being said, 1 Thes 4:17 does mention the dead being raised to meet the Lord in the air among the clouds, and "parousia" does occur in the Gospel of Matthew. But still, I have to wonder if Paul (or an editor) was not thinking of something other than what the sources behind the Gospels, Acts and Hegesippus were talking about.

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DCHindley
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by DCHindley » Sat Jun 09, 2018 7:55 pm

John2 privately pointed out that he was talking about EH 2.23.8, not EH 2.23.12-13.

Yeah, but ...

8) Now some of the seven sects, which existed among the people 8) Τινες ουν των επτα αιρεσεων των εν τω λαω,
and which have been mentioned by me in the memoirs, των προγεγραμμενων μοι εν τοις υπομνημασιν,
asked him: What (is) the gate of Jesus? επυνθανοντο αυτου τις η θυρα του Ιησου,
And he replied that it was the savior. και ελεγε τουτον ειναι τον σωτηρα.

I think that what Eusebius quotes as the words of Hegesippus in EH 2.23.8 is not from H's five volumes of Memoirs, as he refers to his Memoirs as if a different work, one that enumerates all the sects of the Jews (Sadducees and Pharisees qualify). The account in EH 2.23.12-13 may be from his books of Memoirs, but does not seem to mention a "savior."

Now it could also be a backwards reference to an earlier volume of a multi volume set of books, which are what his Memoirs were, perhaps a volume that included a summarization of things recounted in the various volumes.

The only real difference is that He calls Jesus "the savior" rather than "the son of man." But in the "son of man" tradition found in the Gospels, Acts, Revelation and Hegesippus, Jesus was a divine being sent on a mission to save mankind (under conditions of course), and is, thus, a "savior." There is still no verb (not that it means anything other than being a common type of sentence fragment)

In my mind, the moral at stake is still that Jesus' elevated status as a savior - in consequence of his crucifixion by the authorities - allows him to one day arrive powerfully in the clouds to save the day for good people everywhere.

This is all fine and good, but only examines any door talk by the authorities as understood by a fully developed theological perspective of the time of the Gospels and later. I am leery of treating the Gospels, Acts, etc., as any earlier than 2nd century productions, as we have them anyways. Where such talk of "doors" as a class of moral to be associated with an infamous person comes from is hard to say, really. This story is set purportedly in the mid to late 1st century but before the Judean rebellion.

I'll confess that I am not aware of anyone ever using the term "door/gate" (thura) for the moral of the story. The usual terms were ēthikos (ethic principal) or dikaios (example of good/bad conduct), but I am convinced it cannot mean anything but some type a "Moral" to Hegesippus. Maybe he encountered it in his source, whatever it was, and tried to fit it into his narrative, which was a travelogue peppered with amusing anectdotal tales of long past learned from those who he met along the way.

I have suggested <oh gawd, here it comes!> that Hegisippus, to add a little excitement to his boring travelogue, also collected this and that documents from bookstores and curio shops in the market places of towns he passes through. These were possibly documents stolen from a synagogue geniza, or as war souvenirs taken during the Judean war or the bar Kochba war and now was just something to sell for a few obals, maybe a drachma or two for a good one, and used the drama found in them as filler detail for his main stories.

If any were in Aramaic, which is entirely possible, Hegesippus had to make a rough translation from a language he or his family lost touch with when he/they moved to the big city as a slave/retainer of a wealthy patron. He made mistakes. I had proposed that he used a transcript of the mock trial of the Idumean James son of Sosa, who for a while had been Simon bar Giora's chief general but had fallen from grace, allegedly for a plot to depose Simon and hand over the city to the advancing Roman forces in exchange for clemency.

Josephus never says Simon's fate, but since Simon seemed to want to rub it in that one of those high priestly folks, a certain Jesus, second in command to the former HP Ananus, had said insulting things to the Idumean forces which had come to help the Zealot party, when Ananus had the city doors closed to them.

The Idumeans, of whom Jacob son of Sosas was a commander, were let into the city by stealthy Zealots, and they rounded as many members of the High Priestly families as they could catch, including Jesus, took them up to the top of the city walls where everyone could see, slaughtered or mortally wounded them as examples, then threw their victims over the wall into the valley below. It's all about examples intent to scare the common folks into submission. The moral to be taken was that a speech on the wall made by a Jesus when Ananus closed the city doors on Jacob's Idumeans was right about them Idumeans all along. They could not be trusted! The "Door of Jesus" was the popular label given in this propaganda document for the moral of the story it described.

So, an interesting piece of propaganda, probably found on the ground by a soldier who came in to relieve the original assailants of Jerusalem, after the defeated defenders' HQ buildings were found and the important documents carted off to the commander's tent for analysis by his intelligence staff, and handed down several generations just as our fathers and grandfathers handed down German Lugers/SS daggers and Japanese Arisaka rifles and flags, until one day they end up in a flea market. Assuming no one in the Roman command cared about the propaganda literature they found along with the important documents, they were likely just discarded.

DCH
Last edited by DCHindley on Sat Jun 09, 2018 9:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Jun 09, 2018 8:09 pm

DCHindley wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 6:55 pm
In the phrase "declare to us what the gate of Jesus (is)" there is no form of the verb "to be" (I used parentheses) in the passage, although it is very common for this verb to be assumed in what would otherwise be a sentence fragment.
DCHindley wrote:
Sat Jun 09, 2018 7:55 pm
There is still no verb (not that it means anything other than being a common type of sentence fragment)
Correct. Both in Greek and in Latin it is extremely common just to omit simple verbs of being. They are understood rather than expressed.
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Re: What is the door of Jesus?

Post by John2 » Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:34 am

DC wrote:
I think that what Eusebius quotes as the words of Hegesippus in EH 2.23.8 is not from H's five volumes of Memoirs, as he refers to his Memoirs as if a different work, one that enumerates all the sects of the Jews (Sadducees and Pharisees qualify). The account in EH 2.23.12-13 may be from his books of Memoirs, but does not seem to mention a "savior."
It all looks like Hegesippus to me, everything in 2.23.4-18, and which includes two references to Jesus as Savior.
3. The manner of James' death has been already indicated by the above-quoted words of Clement, who records that he was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and was beaten to death with a club. But Hegesippus, who lived immediately after the apostles, gives the most accurate account in the fifth book of his Memoirs. He writes as follows:

4. James, the brother of the Lord, succeeded to the government of the Church in conjunction with the apostles. He has been called the Just by all from the time of our Saviour to the present day; for there were many that bore the name of James.

5. He was holy from his mother's womb; and he drank no wine nor strong drink, nor did he eat flesh. No razor came upon his head; he did not anoint himself with oil, and he did not use the bath.

6. He alone was permitted to enter into the holy place; for he wore not woolen but linen garments. And he was in the habit of entering alone into the temple, and was frequently found upon his knees begging forgiveness for the people, so that his knees became hard like those of a camel, in consequence of his constantly bending them in his worship of God, and asking forgiveness for the people.

7. Because of his exceeding great justice he was called the Just, and Oblias, which signifies in Greek, 'Bulwark of the people' and 'Justice,' in accordance with what the prophets declare concerning him.

8. Now some of the seven sects, which existed among the people and which have been mentioned by me in the Memoirs, asked him, 'What is the gate of Jesus?' and he replied that he was the Saviour.

9. On account of these words some believed that Jesus is the Christ. But the sects mentioned above did not believe either in a resurrection or in one's coming to give to every man according to his works. But as many as believed did so on account of James.


Eusebius' citation of Hegesippus continues to 2.23.18, after which he says in 2.23.19, "These things are related at length by Hegesippus."

Eusebius cites Hegesippus' enumeration of the Jewish sects in 4.22.6, after saying in 4.22.1 that "Hegesippus in the five books of Memoirs which have come down to us has left a most complete record of his own views."
The same writer also records the ancient heresies which arose among the Jews, in the following words: “There were, moreover, various opinions in the circumcision, among the children of Israel. The following were those that were opposed to the tribe of Judah and the Christ: Essenes, Galileans, Hemerobaptists, Masbothæans, Samaritans, Sadducees, Pharisees.”


So it all looks like Hegesippus to me. Eusebius just chose for whatever reason to place the latter citation in book 4 of his history instead of where it had been in Hegesippus' Memoirs (i.e., before the fifth book).
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