Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
Bernard Muller
Posts: 3394
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:02 pm
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by Bernard Muller » Thu Oct 15, 2020 1:20 pm

to mlinssen,
bolding is mine
In a nutshell, again: Thomas was the common source to Mark, Luke and Matthew.
Mark, creating his own story out of nowhere on top of only Thomas, tentatively copied a third of it, and made up the rest. He tried to make it legitimate by referring to scripture.
Luke and Matthew doubled what he copied from Mark, and went nuts with the rest.


A lot of gMark is not in gThomas: out of the 114 logions, only 19 of them contain gMark material (Ref: http://sites.utoronto.ca/religion/synop ... a-synt.htm).
gThomas cannot be considered a basis for gMark.

gThomas has 26 logions with "Q" sayings (common to gMatthew ant gLuke, but not in gMark) (same reference). According to http://homes.chass.utoronto.ca/~kloppen/iqpqet.htm I counted around 110 Q packets of consecutive wordings.
gThomas cannot be considered a basis for Q.

I want to go back to "Matthew" and "Luke" working side-by-side in order to write their respective gospels (with copies of gThomas & gMark).
Why side-by-side? Do you explain that in your papers? In that case, give us where to find the explanation (or better, the whole text of the passage).
If not already explained in your papers, can you provide your explanation?
I seems to me you consider this "side-by-side" very critical and important in order to support your theory that gThomas came first and "Matthew" & "Luke" used it to make their gospels (beyond what they got from gMark).

I want to add: (according to your theory) "Matthew" or "Luke" had to generate a lot of Q material (by copying each other), well beyond what they found in gThomas.
Would it make sense, because this twosome (allegedly) created most of the Q material (by copying each other), that the rest of Q came from them and not from gThomas?
Similar remark for gMark: Would it make sense, because "Mark" (allegedly) made his gospel with little from gThomas, that this (alleged) gThomas material in gMark did not come from gThomas?

Cordially, Bernard

mlinssen
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:01 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by mlinssen » Thu Oct 15, 2020 5:02 pm

Thanks Bernard, I inserted numbers into your text, for reference in my response
Bernard Muller wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 1:20 pm
to mlinssen,
bolding is mine
In a nutshell, again: Thomas was the common source to Mark, Luke and Matthew.
Mark, creating his own story out of nowhere on top of only Thomas, tentatively copied a third of it, and made up the rest. He tried to make it legitimate by referring to scripture.
Luke and Matthew doubled what he copied from Mark, and went nuts with the rest.

1)
A lot of gMark is not in gThomas: out of the 114 logions, only 19 of them contain gMark material (Ref: http://sites.utoronto.ca/religion/synop ... a-synt.htm).
gThomas cannot be considered a basis for gMark.
2)
gThomas has 26 logions with "Q" sayings (common to gMatthew ant gLuke, but not in gMark) (same reference). According to http://homes.chass.utoronto.ca/~kloppen/iqpqet.htm I counted around 110 Q packets of consecutive wordings.
gThomas cannot be considered a basis for Q.
3)
I went to go back to "Matthew" and "Luke" working side-by-side in order to write their respective gospels (with copies of gThomas & gMark).
Why side-by-side? Do you explain that in your papers? In that case, give us where to find the explanation (or better, the whole text of the passage).
If not already explained in your papers, can you provide your explanation?
I seems to me you consider this "side-by-side" very critical and important in order to support your theory that gThomas came first and "Matthew" & "Luke" used it to make their gospels (beyond what they got from gMark).
4)
I want to add: (according to your theory) "Matthew" or "Luke" had to generate a lot of Q material (by copying each other), well beyond what they found in gThomas.
Would it make sense, because this twosome (allegedly) created most of the Q material (by copying each other), that the rest of Q came from them and not from gThomas?
Similar remark for gMark: Would it make sense, because "Mark" (allegedly) made his gospel with little from gThomas, that this (alleged) gThomas material in gMark did not come from gThomas?

Cordially, Bernard
Ad 1)

Coptic/English Interlinear of the Gospel of Thomas

Edited by Antoine Guillaumont, Henri-Charles Puech,
Gilles Quispel, Walter Till & Yassah ‘Abd al-Masih.
Leiden: E.J. Brill; New York: Harper & Brothers; London: Collins, 1959.

https://www.freelyreceive.net/metalogos ... tic/32.gif
https://www.freelyreceive.net/metalogos ... tic/33.gif
https://www.freelyreceive.net/metalogos ... tic/34.gif

I have the book if you require better print, but these are the parallels as advertised by these authors, the editio princeps of Thomas.
As beautifully ancient HTML as Marshall's site is - and one of my starting points many years ago - it doesn't give you a quick numerical overview, does it. But there are 19 blue books to be counted in the Thomas column indeed, with logion 13 ("compare me to others") not counted at all, etc.
Yet why hand out this, when there is so much more out there? Why not cite my own work for example, counting 35 parallels for Mark? You could even challenge what I say per logion!

Ad 2)
I can't accept the count for Q either, given the enormous discrepancy in the Thomas count. We can safely exclude John W Marshall from the list of unbiased and objective scholars, especially as he doesn't have any way of explaining how he justified his parallels, what criteria he used.

The final decisions on parallels for this edition and the means of presenting them have been mine and thus so has the responsibility



(http://sites.utoronto.ca/religion/synopsis/)

He spends considerably more text on the HTML, its size and speed, and his merits are to be sought there, I presume...

Exactly how do you arrive at 110 "Q packets" and why do you count those? Shouldn't one look at total material and just take the relative percentage of words that belong to matching sentences?
And those 110 Q packets then do contain Markan material, so you take Thomas, exclude from it what matches Mark

Ad 3)
Side by side is just three words denoting how Luke and Matthew knew each other and "worked together apart", it's not something magical describing they were joined at the hips while writing their gospels, for example :-)

Ad 4)
That can't come as a surprise, when I state

"Luke and Matthew sat side-by-side writing their different gospels together: they doubled the copies from Thomas, and simply made up the rest in unison; while Luke addressed the Thomas supporters, and Matthew the (moderate) Jews, both changed and added to Mark what was needed at that time.

For instance, Luke / Matthew decided to have the John B mini-stry he to copy it verbatim between them, as apparently contemporary criticism required a firm filling of that void ("hey, about that Prophet of Most High, the messenger of Jesus - shouldn't he have a bit more text than merely announcing Jesus and then going off-stage?")

The birth narrative? It was missing but not so essential as to have it verbatim. And there was the issue of using a prophecy for someone named Immanuel and apply that to a Jesus, of course, so some free form was welcome. And why narrate the John B copy of Samson twice? Etc

My https://www.academia.edu/40695711/Absol ... ory_manner is meant largely to sketch my theory and to work out the pointer to Johannes the Immerser (Zedekiah who immerses Jeremiah in mud) and explain the rest of logion 46 (the broken eyes by Nebuchadnezzar, the "exalted" derived from Jehoiachin, the book of Chronicles starting with Adam and ending with Zedekiah).
If you want to research the direction of dependence between Thomas and the canonicals, then my 72 logia has spelled out all the material, and comments to go along with it.
If you never noticed the grand literary difference between the parables that are in Thomas and those that aren't, then my https://www.academia.edu/40951733/Two_t ... ht_and_day will certainly enlighten you

If you disagree with me, fine. But please, stop handing me vague material from others who say differently than I do without them elaborating in their method of inclusion and exclusion. That's not scholarship or research, that's majority opinion, groupthink, and exactly that what makes religion in general an orthodox and deaf phenomenon, a one-way street. There are quite a few bigoted biblical scholars on both sides (practicing Christians and non-religious), and dialogue is futile there

Challenge what I say please, and e.g. refute the 35 parallels that I have for Mark, in stead of pointing me to John W Marshall who didn't have logion 13, the comparison of Jesus, nor 25, love your brother, and so on.

Bernard Muller
Posts: 3394
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:02 pm
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by Bernard Muller » Thu Oct 15, 2020 7:57 pm

to mlinssen,
I think your book of reference, Coptic/English Interlinear of the Gospel of Thomas, is overly generous about the parallels between gThomas and gMark & Q.
I consulted that website http://www.crivoice.org/thomas.html and counting the parallels with gMark & Q (Including not only close parallels, but also variations of the Thomas sayings, and even common general ideas), I found 23 for parallels with gMark (one is with logion 13) and 34 for parallels with Q.
19 or 23 or 35 for 114 logions. My conclusion is still valid: gThomas cannot be considered a basis for gMark.
26 or 34 for 114 logions. My conclusion is still valid: gThomas cannot be considered a basis for Q.
Side by side is just three words denoting how Luke and Matthew knew each other and "worked together apart", it's not something magical describing they were joined at the hips while writing their gospels, for example
But you wrote in your paper: "Luke and Matthew sat side-by-side writing their different gospels together ... simply made up the rest in unison"
And what do you mean "worked together apart"? Explain the logistics about "Matthew" and "Luke" writing their gospels together apart.
And "seating side by side" is not synonym of "knowing each other", far from that. Furthermore, why "Matthew" and "Luke" would work their vastly different Matthean and Lukan material "in unison"?

Cordially, Bernard

mlinssen
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:01 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by mlinssen » Thu Oct 15, 2020 8:49 pm

Bernard Muller wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 7:57 pm
to mlinssen,
I think your book of reference, Coptic/English Interlinear of the Gospel of Thomas, is overly generous about the parallels between gThomas and gMark & Q.
I consulted that website http://www.crivoice.org/thomas.html and counting the parallels with gMark & Q (Including not only close parallels, but also variations of the Thomas sayings, and even common general ideas), I found 23 for parallels with gMark (one is with logion 13) and 34 for parallels with Q.
19 or 23 or 35 for 114 logions. My conclusion is still valid: gThomas cannot be considered a basis for gMark.
26 or 34 for 114 logions. My conclusion is still valid: gThomas cannot be considered a basis for Q.
Bernard, this is not how it works.
You can't throw general comments at me regarding a very detailed and specific text, and then come up with something entirely unrelated, unverified, and exceedingly dodgy

If you want to criticise the Thomas parallels designated by Guillaumont, Till, Quispel, et al, then be my guest and do so.
If you want to criticise my 72 logia paper, then be my guest and do so.
And that means that you take at least one parallel that you deem "overly generous" and then you comment on exactly why you find it to be so

Because that's how dialogue works, Bernard

Dialogue is not sending out debate messages that ignore and reject generally accepted and freshly discussed documents without any argumentation, swap those with obviously biased material (global and ecumenical ministry dedicated to providing biblical and theological resources for growing Christians - really?! :confusedsmiley: ) to your own liking and then signing with "Cordially, Bernard" - that just is some covert way of passive-aggressive debating technique

Bernard Muller
Posts: 3394
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:02 pm
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by Bernard Muller » Fri Oct 16, 2020 2:53 pm

to mlinssen,
Bernard wrote: but you wrote in your paper: "Luke and Matthew sat side-by-side writing their different gospels together ... simply made up the rest in unison"
And what do you mean "worked together apart"? Explain the logistics about "Matthew" and "Luke" writing their gospels together apart.
And "seating side by side" is not synonym of "knowing each other", far from that. Furthermore, why "Matthew" and "Luke" would work their vastly different Matthean and Lukan material "in unison"?
You did not answer my questions. So you are not in position to give me a lecture about dialogue. Dialogue can only exist if TWO (or more) are conversing. I did my part here but you are silent, killing any dialogue.
I have to guess, because you don't say anything about how this "writing their gospels together apart ... making the rest in unison" would work (with no internet, no fast mail and no phone).
With your theory of gThomas came first, it is obvious that this gospel does not have all the Q material. So "Luke" & "Matthew" had to be together so one would copy some of what the other wrote, therefore generating Q material and minor agreements against gMark. Maybe you want to dispel what some scholars argued, either "Luke" extracted the Q material from gMatthew (and knew about the whole of gMatthew explaining the minor agreements) or "Matthew" extracted the Q material from gLuke (and knew about the whole of gLuke explaining the minor agreements), which would not require them to know gThomas in both cases.

On this issue, I think you don't have any answer, other than a few words, even if "seated side-side ... writing their gospels together apart" seems to me essential in order to keep your theory about an early gThomas valid. But how "Luke" and "Matthew" would practically do that?
And that means that you take at least one parallel that you deem "overly generous" and then you comment on exactly why you find it to be so
Logion 12: gThomas "The disciples said to Jesus, "We know that you are going to leave us. Who will be our leader?" Jesus said to them, "No matter where you are you are to go to James the Just, for whose sake heaven and earth came into being."". Compare with gMark 9:34 "But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest."
I wonder what you wrote about logion 12 in your papers.

Anyway, I don't want to be sidetracked. What matters is that gThomas does not account for all the material in gMark, nor all the material in Q (what you call the double tradition). gThomas is not 'Q'.

Cordially, Bernard

davidmartin
Posts: 433
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:51 pm

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by davidmartin » Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:03 am

mistake ignore
Last edited by davidmartin on Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

davidmartin
Posts: 433
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:51 pm

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by davidmartin » Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:04 am

That, I don't understand. Yes they didn't understand the parables, but how is Thomas reconstructing beliefs, and showing bias towards what?
And why doesn't that mix with a 1st century existence
All it is I'm open to the possibility that Thomas could reflect a certain theological 'camp' that was say opposed to the emerging orthodox viewpoint
That doesn't mean i think most of the sayings aren't pretty ancient

the one that made me think that is 52
His disciples said to him, "Twenty-four prophets spoke in Israel, and all of them spoke in you."
He said to them, "You have omitted the one living in your presence and have spoken (only) of the dead."
It's interesting how what his disciples say reflects the early orthodox church position say 100AD-ish onwards (I'm not convinced Paul ever really connected the prophets to Jesus but i may be wrong so just as some critique Thomas on it's date - you can also critique the usage of prophecy re: Jesus and when this started!)

Anyway, you could read saying 52 as reflecting a later disagreement rather than a legit Jesus saying quite easily

I think it's a bit unlikely for Thomas to have been perfectly preserved without any mods over time although i believe it has not been seriously modded and contains much that is early

As to what you and Bernard are talking about i was reading that and thinking it doesn't much matter how much of Thomas might be in Mark
All it needs is for Mark to have multiple sources and Thomas can still be a source

A second point is that even if Thomas were not a source to the synoptics it can still be an independent source to Jesus sayings and that is probably more important than whether it was a source to the other gospels because it preserves a tradition that the actual sayings of Jesus were salvific in themselves. That's pretty fundamental. It ties in with the gospel of John as well where this can be seen also

So when people late-date Thomas they're denying there was any original tradition of salvific sayings and parables and i think that gets to the heart of the debate more than whether it was a source of Mark or not IMHO only of course!

mlinssen
Posts: 162
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2019 11:01 am
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by mlinssen » Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:43 am

davidmartin wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:04 am
That, I don't understand. Yes they didn't understand the parables, but how is Thomas reconstructing beliefs, and showing bias towards what?
And why doesn't that mix with a 1st century existence
All it is I'm open to the possibility that Thomas could reflect a certain theological 'camp' that was say opposed to the emerging orthodox viewpoint
That doesn't mean i think most of the sayings aren't pretty ancient

the one that made me think that is 52
His disciples said to him, "Twenty-four prophets spoke in Israel, and all of them spoke in you."
He said to them, "You have omitted the one living in your presence and have spoken (only) of the dead."
It's interesting how what his disciples say reflects the early orthodox church position say 100AD-ish onwards (I'm not convinced Paul ever really connected the prophets to Jesus but i may be wrong so just as some critique Thomas on it's date - you can also critique the usage of prophecy re: Jesus and when this started!)

Anyway, you could read saying 52 as reflecting a later disagreement rather than a legit Jesus saying quite easily

I think it's a bit unlikely for Thomas to have been perfectly preserved without any mods over time although i believe it has not been seriously modded and contains much that is early

As to what you and Bernard are talking about i was reading that and thinking it doesn't much matter how much of Thomas might be in Mark
All it needs is for Mark to have multiple sources and Thomas can still be a source

A second point is that even if Thomas were not a source to the synoptics it can still be an independent source to Jesus sayings and that is probably more important than whether it was a source to the other gospels because it preserves a tradition that the actual sayings of Jesus were salvific in themselves. That's pretty fundamental. It ties in with the gospel of John as well where this can be seen also

So when people late-date Thomas they're denying there was any original tradition of salvific sayings and parables and i think that gets to the heart of the debate more than whether it was a source of Mark or not IMHO only of course!
The late-dating is the conservative / orthodox game: date as late as possible, label as Gnostic, and date the gospels as early as possible, and label as "historical". And then they come up with Eusebius, Josephus, and one or two vague lines from some Romans. It's futile, and very incredible (in the real sense of the word indeed)

I'm starting to think that Mark may have been dependent on Marcion, I don't know anymore. They all (Marcion, Mark, Luke and Matthew) have the same copying mistakes towards Thomas, so at least one of them must have started it all. But then again Luke / Marcion is closest to Thomas, although Mark has some tentative copies that Luke and Matthew have vastly more elaborated on.
Everything points to Mark as first, given his rudimentary Christology, no youth, no resurrection description: it is a clear "first" draft of the phantasy of their Jesus

I don't know about logion 52 by the way, it doesn't trigger anything in me. Sorry. Here's my translation:

52. say(s) they to he viz. his(PL) Disciple : twenty four the(PL) Prophet did they speak in the Israel and did they speak all they upper-part of heart/mind you say(s) he behold : did you(PL) place he-who live within your(PL.) presence outward and did you(PL) speak toward they-who dead


davidmartin
Posts: 433
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:51 pm

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by davidmartin » Wed Oct 21, 2020 12:48 am

The late-dating is the conservative / orthodox game: date as late as possible, label as Gnostic, and date the gospels as early as possible, and label as "historical". And then they come up with Eusebius, Josephus, and one or two vague lines from some Romans. It's futile, and very incredible (in the real sense of the word indeed)

I'm starting to think that Mark may have been dependent on Marcion, I don't know anymore. They all (Marcion, Mark, Luke and Matthew) have the same copying mistakes towards Thomas, so at least one of them must have started it all. But then again Luke / Marcion is closest to Thomas, although Mark has some tentative copies that Luke and Matthew have vastly more elaborated on.
Everything points to Mark as first, given his rudimentary Christology, no youth, no resurrection description: it is a clear "first" draft of the phantasy of their Jesus

I don't know about logion 52 by the way, it doesn't trigger anything in me. Sorry
Yeah i see it as a game as well and an ironic one! It's incredible to see the more 'biblical' Christian showing intense dislike for Thomas... when a ginormous chunk of it is the Jesus they're already familiar with but they just don't see it. It's this kind of thing - that inversion of the expected that actually increases the relevance of Thomas and makes it more appealing, to me anyway!

The way I see the whole Mark thing playing out is really simple
We see Paul's mystery gospel kicking serious butt. But Paul was skimpy on who Jesus was and his life
The gospels are a response to that Pauline situation - for consumption in his churches who were naturally curious about who this guy was
Here's the kicker - all information relating to Jesus that existed prior/concurrent with Paul necessarily had to emerge from one of Paul's opponents

That's why the gospels don't always line up with Pauline theology. The sources were not aligned with Pauline theology but managed to be acceptable enough to get away with it
There is only one true Pauline description of Jesus found in Hebrews:
"In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence."
Compare this to the gospels, man what a difference. This in the Pauline phantasy Jesus who does nothing except die and bares little resemblance to the Jesus of the gospels including Thomas .. but that Jesus didn't take off, we see remnant here in Hebrews, instead the gospel Jesus took off
do you see what i mean? this looks like a whole load of inputs from disparate groups not a stage managed production

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 6241
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: Why was Thomas not labelled as Q?

Post by MrMacSon » Wed Oct 21, 2020 1:41 am

mlinssen wrote:
Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:43 am
They all (Marcion, Mark, Luke and Matthew) have the same copying mistakes towards Thomas, so at least one of them must have started it all. But then again, Luke / Marcion is closest to Thomas, although Mark has some tentative copies that Luke and Matthew have vastly more elaborated on.
Has anyone teased these relationships out, ie. how Mark, Matthew, and Luke each and collectively use Thomas?

Might how such intertextuality was done depend on the translation of Thomas used?

Post Reply