On the Jewish Origin of the 'Secret Gospel'

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Secret Alias
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On the Jewish Origin of the 'Secret Gospel'

Post by Secret Alias » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:38 am

From Joel Marcus's book:
Yet, the addition of κρυφῆ (9 above) adds an important interpretive element to the translation. As stated above, the addition of this word makes the command of God specifically deal with furtive preparations for despoliation.

Exod 3:2 So speak secretly into the ears of the people, and have each man ask from his neighbor, and (each) woman from her neighbor for silver and gold articles and clothing.

The translators could easily have rendered the phrase 'speak in the ears of the people' something like 'speak directly to the people,' as in the case of Num 11:1 which translates םירצמ יניעבּ with ἐναντίον τῶν Αἰγυπτίων.31 We have just encountered other similar examples above (2, 13, 18). Wevers has written that this addition makes explicit what is implicit in the MT.32 While this is open to debate, it is without doubt that our translators took what could be understood as a secretive command and translated it explicitly so.33 In other the LXX interprets the words “in the ears of the people” as indicating a clandestine operation which prepared the way for the eventual despoliation of Egypt. Yet this was not necessarily the meaning of the Hebrew text nor did the translators have a habit of interpreting the phrase in that way. The phrase “in the ears of ” following a verb of speech appears 16 times in the Pentateuch (besides our text) and in none of these instances does it imply in Hebrew (nor is it translated into Greek) a secretive communication of any sort.34 While the theory put forth by Collins, that the addition is evidence of an early text form in which the Israelites escape without Pharaoh's consent, is not demanded by the evidence, it is clear the LXX text correctly interprets that the planning stages of the despoliation were carried out in secret.35 The secretive nature of the preparation, the unawareness of the Egyptians of their plans to escape, and the Egyptian understanding of the things given as loans rather than gifts, are heightened by this addition.

Wevers notes also that the translation of םתלצנ with σκυλεύσετε in 3:22 (and 12:36), which he says is undoubtedly the correct text, is an indication that the LXX translators, in contrast to later theologians, had no difficulty in accepting the notion of God's advice to plunder the Egyptians.36 We find no attempt to minimize the “plunder” theme by softening the language, or by shaping the translation toward the 'gifts freely given' or 'fair wages' motifs. The translation not only retains the 'plunder' theme, it intensifies the clandestine nature of it, thus laying the groundwork for the charge of fraudulent deception. These two factors indicate that at the time of translation, the charge of fraud for the despoliation either didn't exist or was unknown to the translators of the Greek Pentateuch. https://books.google.com/books?id=LUOwC ... 4Q6AEIKTAA
If you read Celsus's account you begin to see the idea that 'the messianic secret' might be tied to a revolt - " that the Hebrews, being (originally) Egyptians, dated the commencement (of their political existence) from the time of their rebellion, so also is this, that in the days of Jesus others who were Jews rebelled against the Jewish state, and became His followers"
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

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Secret Alias
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Re: On the Jewish Origin of the 'Secret Gospel'

Post by Secret Alias » Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:59 am

I don't think that many in the forum will understand the significance of the situation but I will try to explain it.

1. Israel's despoliation of Egypt is a very important 'talking point' in the early Church. Irenaeus mentions it over and over again (if you could Tertullian's references as Irenaeus's originally). It was important in rabbinic literature too. The discussion never gets to the real issue at hand which was that the god of Israel secretly instructed them to carry out his plan. Canticles Rabbah says "One finds that this matter was revealed to them twelve months previous, yet there was not found among them one who made it known to his companion." The parallel with Christianity is quite striking. From the Israelite perspective essentially a 'kingdom of God' or heaven is promised by the angel. Moses, his apostle, delivers the message and a waiting period is necessary to fulfill the expectation.
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

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