Ben C. Smith wrote: ↑
Tue Nov 10, 2020 11:30 am
It is common to refer to Papias for the early tradition about the authorship of the gospels of Matthew and Mark; sometimes a person might get a bit more sophisticated and refer to the Elder, presumably John, to whom Papias attributes the tradition. But neither of these attributions is the complete picture:
Papias apud Eusebius, History of the Church 3.39.15-16: 15 “And the Elder would say [ὁ πρεσβύτερος ἔλεγεν] this, ‘Mark, who had become the interpreter of Peter, wrote accurately, yet not in order, as many things as he remembered of the things either said or done by the Lord. For he neither heard the Lord nor followed him, but later, as I said, Peter, who would make the teachings to the needs, but not making them as an ordering together of the lordly oracles, so that Mark did not sin having thus written certain things as he remembered them. For he made one provision, to leave out nothing of the things that he heard or falsify anything in them.’” 16 These things therefore are recorded by Papias about Mark. But about Matthew he has said these things, “Matthew therefore in the Hebrew dialect ordered together the oracles, and each one interpreted them as he was able.”
Only the tradition about Mark is explicitly attributed, by Papias himself (if the quotation is accurate), to the Elder. The tradition about Matthew is attributed to Papias; no intermediary is implied in the quotation itself.
This distinction raises the possibility that John the Elder referred only
to Mark; Papias, coming a bit later, quoted the Elder concerning Mark and then added his own information concerning Matthew. That Eusebius should have placed the traditions in this order, Mark and then Matthew, suggests to me that this is the order in which he found them in Papias, since the church at large held that Matthew had been composed first; this point stands regardless of who is to be credited with the Matthean one. But this order is also
in harmony with the possibility that Papias is quoting the Elder first and then adding his own
knowledge of texts which the Elder had not mentioned. And Matthew may not stand alone, since Eusebius in 3.39.17 credits Papias with knowing a story which he says was found in the gospel according to the Hebrews. Assuming that the texts Papias is referring to were in Greek, a Greek gospel of Matthew and also the so called gospel to the Hebrews may
be what Papias has in mind when he writes that "each interpreted them as he was able." The wording implies at least two; if there are others, then Eusebius does not name them for us (possibly because Papias did not name them either).
And... these relationships are also compatible with a reconstruction by which the Elder mentioned only Mark, whereas Papias mentioned both Matthew and Mark and also knew, and perhaps mentioned, the gospel of the Hebrews; the texts potentially stack in roughly that order.
Let us assume for the sake of argument that this John the Elder is the author of the three Johannine epistles, or at least of the first two (since the third does not come up in what I am about to present).
What are the connections, if any, between the Johannine epistles and the synoptic gospels? (I am not looking at the gospel of John because I am pretty sure it followed and used the Johannine epistles.) Dennis R. MacDonald argued in The Dionysian Gospel
that the Johannine epistles knew and drew from the gospels of Matthew and of Mark, as well as from the so called Logia which he reconstructed in Two Shipwrecked Gospels
, and I am testing that possibility. He gives three examples which I will examine, after which I will present a few other possible connections.
1 John 2.18: 18 Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that Antichrist is coming, even now many Antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour. / 18 Παιδία, ἐσχάτη ὥρα ἐστίν, καὶ καθὼς ἠκούσατε ὅτι ἀντίχριστος ἔρχεται, καὶ νῦν ἀντίχριστοι πολλοὶ γεγόνασιν, ὅθεν γινώσκομεν ὅτι ἐσχάτη ὥρα ἐστίν.
1 John 2.22: 22 Who is the liar except the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the Antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. / 22 Τίς ἐστιν ὁ ψεύστης εἰ μὴ ὁ ἀρνούμενος ὅτι Ἰησοῦς οὐκ ἔστιν ὁ Χριστός; οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ ἀντίχριστος, ὁ ἀρνούμενος τὸν πατέρα καὶ τὸν υἱόν.
1 John 4.1: 1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. / 1 Ἀγαπητοί, μὴ παντὶ πνεύματι πιστεύετε ἀλλὰ δοκιμάζετε τὰ πνεύματα εἰ ἐκ τοῦ θεοῦ ἐστιν, ὅτι πολλοὶ ψευδοπροφῆται ἐξεληλύθασιν εἰς τὸν κόσμον.
2 John [1.]7-8: 7 For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the Antichrist. 8 Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward. / 7 Ὅτι πολλοὶ πλάνοι ἐξῆλθον εἰς τὸν κόσμον, οἱ μὴ ὁμολογοῦντες Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν ἐρχόμενον ἐν σαρκί· οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ πλάνος καὶ ὁ ἀντίχριστος. 8 βλέπετε ἑαυτούς, ἵνα μὴ ἀπολέσητε ἃ εἰργασάμεθα ἀλλὰ μισθὸν πλήρη ἀπολάβητε.
Deuteronomy 13.1-3a: 1 “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, 2 and the sign or the wonder comes true, concerning which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods (whom you have not known) and let us serve them,’ 3a you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams.”
Matthew 24.4-5: 4 And Jesus answered and said to them, “See to it that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.” / 4 Καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, «Βλέπετε μή τις ὑμᾶς πλανήσῃ· 5 πολλοὶ γὰρ ἐλεύσονται ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου λέγοντες, ‹Ἐγώ εἰμι ὁ χριστός,› καὶ πολλοὺς πλανήσουσιν.»
Matthew 24.23-25: 23 “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or, ‘There He is,’ do not believe him. 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 Behold, I have told you in advance.” / 23 «Τότε ἐάν τις ὑμῖν εἴπῃ, ‹Ἰδοὺ, ὧδε ὁ χριστός,› ἤ, ‹Ὧδε,› μὴ πιστεύσητε· 24 ἐγερθήσονται γὰρ ψευδόχριστοι καὶ ψευδοπροφῆται καὶ δώσουσιν σημεῖα μεγάλα καὶ τέρατα ὥστε πλανῆσαι, εἰ δυνατόν, καὶ τοὺς ἐκλεκτούς. 25 ἰδοὺ, προείρηκα ὑμῖν.»
Mark 13.5-6: 5 And Jesus began to say to them, “See to it that no one deceives you. 6 Many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am He,’ and will deceive many.” / 5 Ὁ δὲ Ἰησοῦς ἤρξατο λέγειν αὐτοῖς, «Βλέπετε μή τις ὑμᾶς πλανήσῃ· 6 πολλοὶ ἐλεύσονται ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου λέγοντες ὅτι, ‹Ἐγώ εἰμι,› καὶ πολλοὺς πλανήσουσιν.»
Mark 13.21-23: 21 “And then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or, ‘Behold, He is there,’ do not believe him; 22 for false Christs and false prophets will arise, and will show signs and wonders, in order to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But you watch; behold, I have told you everything in advance.” / 21 «Καὶ τότε ἐάν τις ὑμῖν εἴπῃ, ‹Ἰδε, ὧδε ὁ χριστός, ἴδε, ἐκεῖ,› μὴ πιστεύετε· 22 ἐγερθήσονται γὰρ ψευδόχριστοι καὶ ψευδοπροφῆται καὶ δώσουσιν σημεῖα καὶ τέρατα πρὸς τὸ ἀποπλανᾶν, εἰ δυνατόν, τοὺς ἐκλεκτούς. 23 ὑμεῖς δὲ βλέπετε· προείρηκα ὑμῖν πάντα.»
Didache 16.3-4: 3 For in the final days the false prophets and corruptors of the faith will be multiplied. The sheep will be turned into wolves, and love into hatred. 4 For when lawlessness increases they will hate, persecute, and betray one another. Then the world deceiver will be manifest as a son of God. He will perform signs and wonders, and the earth will be delivered over into his hands. He will perform lawless deeds, unlike anything done from eternity. / 3 Ἐν γὰρ ταῖς ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις πληθυνθήσονται οἱ ψευδοπροφῆται καὶ οἱ φθορεῖς, καὶ στραφήσονται τὰ πρόβατα εἰς λύκους, καὶ ἡ ἀγάπη στραφήσεται εἰς μῖσος· 4 αὐξανούσης γὰρ τῆς ἀνομίας μισήσουσιν ἀλλήλους καὶ διώξουσι καὶ παραδώσουσι καὶ τότε φανήσεται ὁ κοσμοπλάνος ὡς υἱὸς θεοῦ καὶ ποιήσει σημεῖα καὶ τέρατα καὶ ἡ γῆ παραδοθήσεται εἰς χεῖρας αὐτοῦ, καὶ ποιήσει ἀθεμίτα, ἃ οὐδέποτε γέγονεν ἐξ αἰῶνος.
Code: Select all
1 John 2.18: ἀντίχριστος ἔρχεται
1 John 2.18: ἀντίχριστοι πολλοὶ γεγόνασιν
1 John 2.22: οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ ἀντίχριστος | ὁ ψεύστης
1 John 4.1: πολλοὶ ψευδοπροφῆται ἐξεληλύθασιν εἰς τὸν κόσμον
2 John 1.7: πολλοὶ πλάνοι ἐξῆλθον εἰς τὸν κόσμον
2 John 1.7: οὗτός ἐστιν | ὁ ἀντίχριστος | ὁ πλάνος | βλέπετε ἑαυτούς
Matthew 24.4-5: πολλοὶ γὰρ | πολλοὺς πλανήσουσιν | ἐλεύσονται ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου
Matthew 24.23-25: ἐγερθήσονται γὰρ ψευδόχριστοι καὶ ψευδοπροφῆται
Mark 13.5-6: πολλοὶ | πολλοὺς πλανήσουσιν | ἐλεύσονται ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματί μου
Mark 13.21-23: ἐγερθήσονται γὰρ ψευδόχριστοι καὶ ψευδοπροφῆται | ὑμεῖς δὲ βλέπετε
Didache 16.3: πληθυνθήσονται οἱ ψευδοπροφῆται
Didache 16.4: φανήσεται ὁ κοσμοπλάνος
If 1 John is drawing from the synoptic gospels, then it can be drawing either from Matthew or from Mark. If 2 John is drawing from them, however, it is probably Mark, because both advise the reader to "watch" (βλέπετε) in the same context, a piece of advice missing from this context in Matthew.
The Love Commandment
1 John 2.3-7: 3 By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: 6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked. 7 Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. / 3 Καὶ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι ἐγνώκαμεν αὐτόν, ἐὰν τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ τηρῶμεν. 4 ὁ λέγων ὅτι, «Ἔγνωκα αὐτὸν,» καὶ τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ μὴ τηρῶν ψεύστης ἐστίν, καὶ ἐν τούτῳ ἡ ἀλήθεια οὐκ ἔστιν· 5 ὃς δ´ ἂν τηρῇ αὐτοῦ τὸν λόγον, ἀληθῶς ἐν τούτῳ ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ τετελείωται· ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι ἐν αὐτῷ ἐσμεν. 6 ὁ λέγων ἐν αὐτῷ μένειν ὀφείλει, καθὼς ἐκεῖνος περιεπάτησεν, καὶ αὐτὸς οὕτως περιπατεῖν. 7 ἀγαπητοί, οὐκ ἐντολὴν καινὴν γράφω ὑμῖν ἀλλ´ ἐντολὴν παλαιὰν ἣν εἴχετε ἀπ´ ἀρχῆς· ἡ ἐντολὴ ἡ παλαιά ἐστιν ὁ λόγος ὃν ἠκούσατε.
1 John 3.11-12: 11 For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. / 11 Ὅτι αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἀγγελία ἣν ἠκούσατε ἀπ´ ἀρχῆς, ἵνα ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους, 12 οὐ καθὼς Κάϊν ἐκ τοῦ πονηροῦ ἦν καὶ ἔσφαξεν τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ· καὶ χάριν τίνος ἔσφαξεν αὐτόν; ὅτι τὰ ἔργα αὐτοῦ πονηρὰ ἦν, τὰ δὲ τοῦ ἀδελφοῦ αὐτοῦ δίκαια.
1 John 3.23-24: 23 This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us. 24 The one who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. We know by this that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us. / 23 Καὶ αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἐντολὴ αὐτοῦ, ἵνα πιστεύσωμεν τῷ ὀνόματι τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους, καθὼς ἔδωκεν ἐντολὴν ἡμῖν. 24 καὶ ὁ τηρῶν τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ ἐν αὐτῷ μένει καὶ αὐτὸς ἐν αὐτῷ· καὶ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι μένει ἐν ἡμῖν, ἐκ τοῦ πνεύματος οὗ ἡμῖν ἔδωκεν.
1 John 4.20-21: 20 If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also. / 20 Ἐάν τις εἴπῃ ὅτι, «Ἀγαπῶ τὸν θεὸν,» καὶ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ μισῇ, ψεύστης ἐστίν· ὁ γὰρ μὴ ἀγαπῶν τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ ὃν ἑώρακεν, τὸν θεὸν ὃν οὐχ ἑώρακεν οὐ δύναται ἀγαπᾶν. 21 καὶ ταύτην τὴν ἐντολὴν ἔχομεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ, ἵνα ὁ ἀγαπῶν τὸν θεὸν ἀγαπᾷ καὶ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ.
2 John [1.]5-6: 5 Now I ask you, lady, not as though I were writing to you a new commandment, but the one which we have had from the beginning, that we love one another. 6 And this is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, that you should walk in it. / 5 Καὶ νῦν ἐρωτῶ σε, κυρία, οὐχ ὡς ἐντολὴν γράφων σοι καινὴν ἀλλ´ ἣν εἴχομεν ἀπ´ ἀρχῆς, ἵνα ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους. 6 καὶ αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἀγάπη, ἵνα περιπατῶμεν κατὰ τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ· αὕτη ἡ ἐντολή ἐστιν, καθὼς ἠκούσατε ἀπ´ ἀρχῆς, ἵνα ἐν αὐτῇ περιπατῆτε.
John 13.34: 34 “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” / 34 «Ἐντολὴν καινὴν δίδωμι ὑμῖν, ἵνα ἀγαπᾶτε ἀλλήλους, καθὼς ἠγάπησα ὑμᾶς ἵνα καὶ ὑμεῖς ἀγαπᾶτε ἀλλήλους.»
Matthew 5.44: 44 “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” / 44 «Ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν· ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν καὶ προσεύχεσθε ὑπὲρ τῶν διωκόντων ὑμᾶς.»
Matthew 22.34-40: 34 But when the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered themselves together. 35 One of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” / 34 Οἱ δὲ Φαρισαῖοι ἀκούσαντες ὅτι ἐφίμωσεν τοὺς Σαδδουκαίους συνήχθησαν ἐπὶ τὸ αὐτό, 35 καὶ ἐπηρώτησεν εἷς ἐξ αὐτῶν νομικὸς πειράζων αὐτόν, 36 «Διδάσκαλε, ποία ἐντολὴ μεγάλη ἐν τῷ νόμῳ;» 37 ὁ δὲ ἔφη αὐτῷ, «‹Ἀγαπήσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ καρδίᾳ σου καὶ ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ ψυχῇ σου καὶ ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ διανοίᾳ σου.› 38 αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ μεγάλη καὶ πρώτη ἐντολή. 39 δευτέρα δὲ ὁμοία αὐτῇ, ‹Ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν.› 40 ἐν ταύταις ταῖς δυσὶν ἐντολαῖς ὅλος ὁ νόμος κρέμαται καὶ οἱ προφῆται.»
Mark 12.28-34: 28 One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, “What commandment is the foremost of all?” 29 Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; 30 and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” 32 The scribe said to Him, “Right, Teacher; You have truly stated that He is One, and there is no one else besides Him; 33 and to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as himself, is much more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” 34 When Jesus saw that he had answered intelligently, He said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that, no one would venture to ask Him any more questions. / 28 Καὶ προσελθὼν εἷς τῶν γραμματέων ἀκούσας αὐτῶν συζητούντων, ἰδὼν ὅτι καλῶς ἀπεκρίθη αὐτοῖς ἐπηρώτησεν αὐτόν, «Ποία ἐστὶν ἐντολὴ πρώτη πάντων;» 29 ἀπεκρίθη ὁ Ἰησοῦς ὅτι, «Πρώτη ἐστίν, ‹Ἄκουε, Ἰσραήλ, κύριος ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν κύριος εἷς ἐστιν, 30 καὶ ἀγαπήσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου ἐξ ὅλης τῆς καρδίας σου καὶ ἐξ ὅλης τῆς ψυχῆς σου καὶ ἐξ ὅλης τῆς διανοίας σου καὶ ἐξ ὅλης τῆς ἰσχύος σου.› 31 δευτέρα αὕτη, ‹Ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν.› μείζων τούτων ἄλλη ἐντολὴ οὐκ ἔστιν.» 32 καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ γραμματεύς, «Καλῶς, διδάσκαλε, ἐπ´ ἀληθείας εἶπες ὅτι εἷς ἐστιν καὶ οὐκ ἔστιν ἄλλος πλὴν αὐτοῦ· 33 καὶ τὸ ἀγαπᾶν αὐτὸν ἐξ ὅλης τῆς καρδίας καὶ ἐξ ὅλης τῆς συνέσεως καὶ ἐξ ὅλης τῆς ἰσχύος καὶ τὸ ἀγαπᾶν τὸν πλησίον ὡς ἑαυτὸν περισσότερόν ἐστιν πάντων τῶν ὁλοκαυτωμάτων καὶ θυσιῶν.» 34 καὶ ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἰδὼν αὐτὸν ὅτι νουνεχῶς ἀπεκρίθη εἶπεν αὐτῷ, «Οὐ μακρὰν εἶ ἀπὸ τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ.» καὶ οὐδεὶς οὐκέτι ἐτόλμα αὐτὸν ἐπερωτῆσαι.
Luke 10.25-28: 25 And a lawyer stood up and put Him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 And He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How does it read to you?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And He said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.” / 25 Καὶ ἰδοὺ, νομικός τις ἀνέστη ἐκπειράζων αὐτὸν λέγων, «Διδάσκαλε, τί ποιήσας ζωὴν αἰώνιον κληρονομήσω;» 26 ὁ δὲ εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτόν, «Ἐν τῷ νόμῳ τί γέγραπται; πῶς ἀναγινώσκεις;» 27 ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν, «Ἀγαπήσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου ἐξ ὅλης τῆς καρδίας σου καὶ ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ ψυχῇ σου καὶ ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ ἰσχύϊ σου καὶ ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ διανοίᾳ σου, καὶ τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν.» 28 εἶπεν δὲ αὐτῷ, «Ὀρθῶς ἀπεκρίθης· τοῦτο ποίει καὶ ζήσῃ.»
Deuteronomy 6.4-9: 4 “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
Leviticus 19.17-18: 17 “You shall not hate your fellow countryman in your heart; you may surely reprove your neighbor, but shall not incur sin because of him. 18 You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the sons of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself; I am the Lord.”
1 Corinthians 13.1-13: 1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, ut do not have love, I am nothing. 3 And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing. 4 Love is patient, love is kind, and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I shall know fully just as I also have been fully known. 13 But now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Code: Select all
1 John 4.21: καὶ ταύτην τὴν ἐντολὴν ἔχομεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ
2 John 1.5-6: οὐχ ὡς ἐντολὴν γράφων σοι καινὴν ἀλλ´ ἣν εἴχομεν ἀπ´ ἀρχῆς
John 13.34: ἐντολὴν καινὴν δίδωμι ὑμῖν
Matthew 5.44: ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν
Matthew 22.37: αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ μεγάλη καὶ πρώτη ἐντολή
Mark 12.30: ποία ἐστὶν ἐντολὴ πρώτη πάντων
1 John 4.21: ἵνα ὁ ἀγαπῶν τὸν θεὸν ἀγαπᾷ καὶ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ
2 John 1.5-6: ἵνα ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους
John 13.34: ἵνα ἀγαπᾶτε ἀλλήλους
Matthew 5.44: ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν
Matthew 22.37: ἀγαπήσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου | ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν
Mark 12.30: ἀγαπήσεις κύριον τὸν θεόν σου | ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν
If 1 John and 2 John are drawing from the synoptic gospels, they can be drawing either from Matthew or from Mark. It is worth pointing out that Matthew 5.44 looks like an upping of the moral ante over and against the love commandment. You think that loving your neighbor is the (second) greatest commandment? No, loving your enemy
The Unforgivable Sin
1 John 5.16-17: 16 If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not unto death, he shall ask and He will for him give life to those who commit a sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death; I do not say that he should make request concerning that. 17 All unrighteousness is sin, and there is a sin not unto death. / 16 Ἐάν τις ἴδῃ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ ἁμαρτάνοντα ἁμαρτίαν μὴ πρὸς θάνατον, αἰτήσει καὶ δώσει αὐτῷ ζωήν, τοῖς ἁμαρτάνουσιν μὴ πρὸς θάνατον. ἔστιν ἁμαρτία πρὸς θάνατον· οὐ περὶ ἐκείνης λέγω ἵνα ἐρωτήσῃ. 17 πᾶσα ἀδικία ἁμαρτία ἐστίν, καὶ ἔστιν ἁμαρτία οὐ πρὸς θάνατον.
Matthew 12.31-32: 31 “Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven. 32 Whoever will speak a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever will speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.” / 31 «Διὰ τοῦτο λέγω ὑμῖν, πᾶσα ἁμαρτία καὶ βλασφημία ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς ἀνθρώποις, ἡ δὲ τοῦ πνεύματος βλασφημία οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται. 32 καὶ ὃς ἐὰν εἴπῃ λόγον κατὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· ὃς δ´ ἂν εἴπῃ κατὰ τοῦ πνεύματος τοῦ ἁγίου, οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι.»
Mark 3.28-29: 28 “Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter; 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin.” / 28 «Ἀμὴν, λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι πάντα ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων τὰ ἁμαρτήματα καὶ αἱ βλασφημίαι ὅσα ἐὰν βλασφημήσωσιν· 29 ὃς δ´ ἂν βλασφημήσῃ εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, ἀλλ´ ἔνοχός ἐστιν αἰωνίου ἁμαρτήματος.»
Luke 12.10: 10 “And everyone who will speak a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him.” / 10 «Καὶ πᾶς ὃς ἐρεῖ λόγον εἰς τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· τῷ δὲ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα βλασφημήσαντι οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται.»
Didache 11.7-8: 7 Do not test or condemn a prophet speaking in the Spirit. For every sin will be forgiven, but not this sin. 8 Not everyone who speaks in the Spirit is a prophet, but only one who conducts himself like the Lord. Thus the false prophet and the prophet will both be known by their conduct. / 7 Καὶ πάντα προφήτην λαλοῦντα ἐν πνεύματι οὐ πειράσετε οὐδὲ διακρινεῖτε· πᾶσα γὰρ ἁμαρτία ἀφεθήσεται, αὕτη δὲ ἡ ἁμαρτία οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται. 8 οὐ πᾶς δὲ ὁ λαλῶν ἐν πνεύματι προφήτης ἐστίν, ἀλλ´ ἐὰν ἔχῃ τοὺς τρόπους κυρίου. ἀπὸ οὖν τῶν τρόπων γνωσθήσεται ὁ ψευδοφροφήτης καὶ ὁ προφήτης.
Code: Select all
1 John 5.16: τοῖς ἁμαρτάνουσιν μὴ πρὸς θάνατον | δώσει αὐτῷ ζωήν
1 John 5.17: ἔστιν ἁμαρτία οὐ πρὸς θάνατον
Matthew 12.31: πᾶσα ἁμαρτία καὶ βλασφημία ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς ἀνθρώποις
Matthew 12.32: ὃς ἐὰν εἴπῃ λόγον κατὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ
Mark 3.28: πάντα | τὰ ἁμαρτήματα | καὶ αἱ βλασφημίαι ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων
Luke 12.10: πᾶς ὃς ἐρεῖ λόγον εἰς τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ
1 John 5.16: ἔστιν ἁμαρτία πρὸς θάνατον
1 John 5.17: —
Matthew 12.31: ἡ δὲ τοῦ πνεύματος βλασφημία οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται
Matthew 12.32: —
Mark 3.29: ὃς δ´ ἂν βλασφημήσῃ εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα
Luke 12.10: τῷ δὲ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα βλασφημήσαντι οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται
If 1 John is drawing from the synoptic gospels, it can be drawing either from Matthew or from Mark.
Now, MacDonald actually argues for Matthew as the source rather than Mark, since Matthew specifies that speaking against the Son of Man is forgivable. MacDonald supposes that this allowance is the reason why John says not to ask concerning the sin unto death. But I do not agree with this interpretation at all. John is using language such as what we find in the Hebrew scriptures with regard to sacrifices:
Psalm 40.6 (39.7 OG): 6 Sacrifice and offering you did not wish for, but my ears you have mended; holocaust and concerning sin you did not ask [καὶ περὶ ἁμαρτίας οὐκ ᾔτησας].
God not asking concerning sin here does not mean that God did not make inquiries
or request information
about sin; rather, it means that the sacrifice in question was concerning sin
, so as to forgive it. In the same way, John saying not to make requests concerning the sin unto death means not to request God to forgive
that sin. This prohibition is the negative parallel to the positive phrase, "he shall ask," earlier in the verse. Thus the argument for Matthew over and against Mark as the possible source here evaporates; either could be in view.
Now on to a few parallels which MacDonald did not discuss in this context.
The Will of God
1 John 2.17: 17 The world is passing away and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God continues to live forever. / 17 Καὶ ὁ κόσμος παράγεται καὶ ἡ ἐπιθυμία αὐτοῦ, ὁ δὲ ποιῶν τὸ θέλημα τοῦ θεοῦ μένει εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα.
Matthew 12.32: 32 “Whoever will speak a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever will speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.” / 32 «καὶ ὃς ἐὰν εἴπῃ λόγον κατὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· ὃς δ´ ἂν εἴπῃ κατὰ τοῦ πνεύματος τοῦ ἁγίου, οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι.»
Matthew 12.49-50: 49 And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold, My mother and My brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.” / 49 καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τοὺς μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ εἶπεν, «Ἰδοὺ, ἡ μήτηρ μου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί μου. 50 ὅστις γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν οὐρανοῖς αὐτός μου ἀδελφὸς καὶ ἀδελφὴ καὶ μήτηρ ἐστίν.»
Mark 3.29: 29 “But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin.” / 29 «Ὅς δ´ ἂν βλασφημήσῃ εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, ἀλλ´ ἔνοχός ἐστιν αἰωνίου ἁμαρτήματος.»
Mark 3.35: 35 “For whoever does the will of God, this is My brother, and sister, and mother.” / 35 «Ὅς γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ θεοῦ, οὗτος ἀδελφός μου καὶ ἀδελφὴ καὶ μήτηρ ἐστίν.»
Luke 8.21: 21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.” / 21 Ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς, «Μήτηρ μου καὶ ἀδελφοί μου οὗτοί εἰσιν οἱ τὸν λόγον τοῦ θεοῦ ἀκούοντες καὶ ποιοῦντες.»
Luke 12.10: 10 “And everyone who will speak a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him.” / 10 «Καὶ πᾶς ὃς ἐρεῖ λόγον εἰς τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· τῷ δὲ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα βλασφημήσαντι οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται.»
Code: Select all
1 John 2.17: ὁ δὲ ποιῶν τὸ θέλημα τοῦ θεοῦ μένει εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα
Matthew 12.32: οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι
Matthew 12.50: ὅστις γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν οὐρανοῖς
Mark 3.35: ὃς γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ θεοῦ
Mark 3.29: οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα
Luke 8.21: καὶ ποιοῦντες
Luke 12.10: οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται
If this parallel is meaningful, 1 John is probably drawing from Mark. Not only are the two possible verses closer together in Mark (3.29 & 3.35) than in Matthew (12.50 & 12.32), but the exact phrase John uses, εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, is found only in Mark. The evidence here is hardly watertight, obviously, but 1 John 2.17 can easily be read as responding, as it were, to Mark 3.29. Jesus in Mark says that the blasphemer of the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, even εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, but that a person who does the will of God is considered as family. John, then, writes that a person who does the will of God remains, in contrast with the one who has sinned unto death, εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, which is a solid reading of Mark.
Shame at His Advent
1 John 2.28: 28 Now, little children, remain in Him, so that when He appears, we may have confidence and not draw back from Him in shame at His advent. / 28 Καὶ νῦν, τεκνία, μένετε ἐν αὐτῷ, ἵνα ἐὰν φανερωθῇ, σχῶμεν παρρησίαν καὶ μὴ αἰσχυνθῶμεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ ἐν τῇ παρουσίᾳ αὐτοῦ.
Matthew 10.32-33: 32 “Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. 33 But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.” / 32 «Πᾶς οὖν ὅστις ὁμολογήσει ἐν ἐμοὶ ἔμπροσθεν τῶν ἀνθρώπων, ὁμολογήσω κἀγὼ ἐν αὐτῷ ἔμπροσθεν τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς· 33 ὅστις δ´ ἂν ἀρνήσηταί με ἔμπροσθεν τῶν ἀνθρώπων, ἀρνήσομαι κἀγὼ αὐτὸν ἔμπροσθεν τοῦ πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς.»
Mark 8.38: 38 “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” / 38 «Ὅς γὰρ ἐὰν ἐπαισχυνθῇ με καὶ τοὺς ἐμοὺς λόγους ἐν τῇ γενεᾷ ταύτῃ τῇ μοιχαλίδι καὶ ἁμαρτωλῷ, καὶ ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐπαισχυνθήσεται αὐτόν, ὅταν ἔλθῃ ἐν τῇ δόξῃ τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτοῦ μετὰ τῶν ἀγγέλων τῶν ἁγίων.»
Luke 9.26: 26 “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory, and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.” / 26 «Ὅς γὰρ ἂν ἐπαισχυνθῇ με καὶ τοὺς ἐμοὺς λόγους, τοῦτον ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐπαισχυνθήσεται, ὅταν ἔλθῃ ἐν τῇ δόξῃ αὐτοῦ καὶ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ τῶν ἁγίων ἀγγέλων.»
Luke 12.8-9: 8 “And I say to you, everyone who confesses Me before men, the Son of Man will confess him also before the angels of God; 9 but he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.” / 8 «Λέγω δὲ ὑμῖν, πᾶς ὃς ἂν ὁμολογήσῃ ἐν ἐμοὶ ἔμπροσθεν τῶν ἀνθρώπων, καὶ ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ὁμολογήσει ἐν αὐτῷ ἔμπροσθεν τῶν ἀγγέλων τοῦ θεοῦ· 9 ὁ δὲ ἀρνησάμενός με ἐνώπιον τῶν ἀνθρώπων ἀπαρνηθήσεται ἐνώπιον τῶν ἀγγέλων τοῦ θεοῦ.»
Code: Select all
1 John 2.28: ἵνα ἐὰν φανερωθῇ | μὴ αἰσχυνθῶμεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ ἐν τῇ παρουσίᾳ αὐτοῦ
Mark 8.38: ὃς γὰρ ἐὰν ἐπαισχυνθῇ με | καὶ ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐπαισχυνθήσεται αὐτόν, ὅταν ἔλθῃ
Luke 9.26: ὃς γὰρ ἂν ἐπαισχυνθῇ με | τοῦτον ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐπαισχυνθήσεται, ὅταν ἔλθῃ
If this parallel is meaningful, 1 John is probably drawing from Mark. Only Mark has Jesus speaking of being ashamed in this context. Now, it is true that, of the three synoptic gospels, only Matthew uses the term παρουσία as John does here. However, that term is also found in Paul, in James, and in 2 Peter. I have yet to do as thoroughgoing an investigation of this term as I would like, but there seems to be no reason to suppose that John derived the term from Matthew, who fails to use it in this exact context, at any rate.
Manslaying or Murder
1 John 3.13-16: 11 For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; 12 not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. 13 Do not be surprised, brothers and sisters, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers and sisters. The one who does not love remains in death. 15 Everyone who hates his brother or sister is a manslayer, and you know that no manslayer has eternal life remaining in him. 16 We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. / 11 Ὅτι αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἀγγελία ἣν ἠκούσατε ἀπ᾽ ἀρχῆς, ἵνα ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους, 12 οὐ καθὼς Κάϊν ἐκ τοῦ πονηροῦ ἦν καὶ ἔσφαξεν τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ· καὶ χάριν τίνος ἔσφαξεν αὐτόν; ὅτι τὰ ἔργα αὐτοῦ πονηρὰ ἦν, τὰ δὲ τοῦ ἀδελφοῦ αὐτοῦ δίκαια. 13 καὶ μὴ θαυμάζετε, ἀδελφοί, εἰ μισεῖ ὑμᾶς ὁ κόσμος. 14 ἡμεῖς οἴδαμεν ὅτι μεταβεβήκαμεν ἐκ τοῦ θανάτου εἰς τὴν ζωήν, ὅτι ἀγαπῶμεν τοὺς ἀδελφούς· ὁ μὴ ἀγαπῶν μένει ἐν τῷ θανάτῳ. 15 πᾶς ὁ μισῶν τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ ἀνθρωποκτόνος ἐστίν, καὶ οἴδατε ὅτι πᾶς ἀνθρωποκτόνος οὐκ ἔχει ζωὴν αἰώνιον ἐν αὐτῷ μένουσαν. 16 ἐν τούτῳ ἐγνώκαμεν τὴν ἀγάπην, ὅτι ἐκεῖνος ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν τὴν ψυχὴν αὐτοῦ ἔθηκεν, καὶ ἡμεῖς ὀφείλομεν ὑπὲρ τῶν ἀδελφῶν τὰς ψυχὰς θεῖναι.
Matthew 5.21-22: 21 “You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘You shall not murder,’ and whoever commits murder shall be answerable to the court. 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be answerable to the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ shall be answerable to the council; and whoever says, ‘Fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.” / 21 «Ἠκούσατε ὅτι ἐρρέθη τοῖς ἀρχαίοις, ‹Οὐ φονεύσεις,› ὃς δ´ ἂν φονεύσῃ, ἔνοχος ἔσται τῇ κρίσει. 22 ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι πᾶς ὁ ὀργιζόμενος τῷ ἀδελφῷ αὐτοῦ ἔνοχος ἔσται τῇ κρίσει· ὃς δ´ ἂν εἴπῃ τῷ ἀδελφῷ αὐτοῦ, ‹Ῥακά,› ἔνοχος ἔσται τῷ συνεδρίῳ· ὃς δ´ ἂν εἴπῃ, ‹Μωρέ,› ἔνοχος ἔσται εἰς τὴν γέενναν τοῦ πυρός.»
Genesis 4.8: 8 Cain told Abel his brother. And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. / 8 Καὶ εἶπεν Κάϊν πρὸς Ἅβελ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ, «Διέλθωμεν εἰς τὸ πεδίον,» καὶ ἐγένετο ἐν τῷ εἶναι αὐτοὺς ἐν τῷ πεδίῳ καὶ ἀνέστη Κάϊν ἐπὶ Ἅβελ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀπέκτεινεν αὐτόν.
I did not find enough of a verbal parallel to display.
1 John is running with the motif of Cain here; ἀποκτείνω is the verb used in Genesis 4.8 LXX of him manslaying Abel. If anything, John is conspicuous in not
using Matthew at this point, but rather turning to Genesis to make his point that hating a brother is the moral equivalent of manslaughter.
Asking and Receiving
1 John 3.21-23: 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22 and whatever we ask, we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. 23 This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us. / 21 Ἀγαπητοί, ἐὰν ἡ καρδία ἡμῶν μὴ καταγινώσκῃ, παρρησίαν ἔχομεν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν 22 καὶ ὃ ἐὰν αἰτῶμεν, λαμβάνομεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ, ὅτι τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ τηροῦμεν καὶ τὰ ἀρεστὰ ἐνώπιον αὐτοῦ ποιοῦμεν. 23 καὶ αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἐντολὴ αὐτοῦ, ἵνα πιστεύσωμεν τῷ ὀνόματι τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους, καθὼς ἔδωκεν ἐντολὴν ἡμῖν.
1 John 5.14-15: 14 This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And, if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him. / 14 Καὶ αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ παρρησία ἣν ἔχομεν πρὸς αὐτόν, ὅτι ἐάν τι αἰτώμεθα κατὰ τὸ θέλημα αὐτοῦ ἀκούει ἡμῶν. 15 καὶ ἐὰν οἴδαμεν ὅτι ἀκούει ἡμῶν ὃ ἐὰν αἰτώμεθα, οἴδαμεν ὅτι ἔχομεν τὰ αἰτήματα ἃ ᾐτήκαμεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ.
Matthew 7.7-8: 7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” / 7 «Αἰτεῖτε καὶ δοθήσεται ὑμῖν, ζητεῖτε καὶ εὑρήσετε, κρούετε καὶ ἀνοιγήσεται ὑμῖν. 8 πᾶς γὰρ ὁ αἰτῶν λαμβάνει καὶ ὁ ζητῶν εὑρίσκει καὶ τῷ κρούοντι ἀνοιγήσεται.»
Matthew 21.22: 22 “And whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive it all.” / 22 «Καὶ πάντα ὅσα ἂν αἰτήσητε ἐν τῇ προσευχῇ πιστεύοντες λήμψεσθε.»
Mark 11.24: 24 “Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.” / 24 «Διὰ τοῦτο λέγω ὑμῖν, πάντα ὅσα προσεύχεσθε καὶ αἰτεῖσθε, πιστεύετε ὅτι ἐλάβετε, καὶ ἔσται ὑμῖν.»
Luke 11.9-10: 9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; and he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks it will be opened.” / 9 «Κἀγὼ ὑμῖν λέγω, αἰτεῖτε καὶ δοθήσεται ὑμῖν, ζητεῖτε καὶ εὑρήσετε, κρούετε καὶ ἀνοιγήσεται ὑμῖν· 10 πᾶς γὰρ ὁ αἰτῶν λαμβάνει καὶ ὁ ζητῶν εὑρίσκει καὶ τῷ κρούοντι ἀνοιγήσεται.»
John 14.13: 13 “Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.” / 13 «Καὶ ὅ τι ἂν αἰτήσητε ἐν τῷ ὀνόματί μου τοῦτο ποιήσω, ἵνα δοξασθῇ ὁ πατὴρ ἐν τῷ υἱῷ.»
John 15.7: 7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” / 7 «Ἐὰν μείνητε ἐν ἐμοὶ καὶ τὰ ῥήματά μου ἐν ὑμῖν μείνῃ, ὃ ἐὰν θέλητε αἰτήσασθε, καὶ γενήσεται ὑμῖν.»
John 16.23-24: 23 “In that day you will not question Me about anything. Truly, truly, I say to you, if you ask the Father for anything in My name, He will give it to you. 24 Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be made full.” / 23 «Καὶ ἐν ἐκείνῃ τῇ ἡμέρᾳ ἐμὲ οὐκ ἐρωτήσετε οὐδέν. ἀμὴν ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, ἄν τι αἰτήσητε τὸν πατέρα ἐν τῷ ὀνόματί μου δώσει ὑμῖν. 24 Ἕως ἄρτι οὐκ ᾐτήσατε οὐδὲν ἐν τῷ ὀνόματί μου· αἰτεῖτε καὶ λήμψεσθε, ἵνα ἡ χαρὰ ὑμῶν ᾖ πεπληρωμένη.»
James 1.5-8: 5 But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, 8 being a doubleminded man, unstable in all his ways. / 5 Εἰ δέ τις ὑμῶν λείπεται σοφίας, αἰτείτω παρὰ τοῦ διδόντος θεοῦ πᾶσιν ἁπλῶς καὶ μὴ ὀνειδίζοντος, καὶ δοθήσεται αὐτῷ. 6 αἰτείτω δὲ ἐν πίστει μηδὲν διακρινόμενος· ὁ γὰρ διακρινόμενος ἔοικεν κλύδωνι θαλάσσης ἀνεμιζομένῳ καὶ ῥιπιζομένῳ. 7 μὴ γὰρ οἰέσθω ὁ ἄνθρωπος ἐκεῖνος ὅτι λήμψεταί τι παρὰ τοῦ κυρίου, 8 ἀνὴρ δίψυχος, ἀκατάστατος ἐν πάσαις ταῖς ὁδοῖς αὐτοῦ.
James 4.1-3: 1 What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is the source not your pleasures that wage war in your body’s parts? 2 You lust and do not have, so you commit murder. And you are envious and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives, so that you may spend what you request on your pleasures. / 1 Πόθεν πόλεμοι καὶ πόθεν μάχαι ἐν ὑμῖν; οὐκ ἐντεῦθεν, ἐκ τῶν ἡδονῶν ὑμῶν τῶν στρατευομένων ἐν τοῖς μέλεσιν ὑμῶν; 2 ἐπιθυμεῖτε καὶ οὐκ ἔχετε, φονεύετε καὶ ζηλοῦτε καὶ οὐ δύνασθε ἐπιτυχεῖν, μάχεσθε καὶ πολεμεῖτε, οὐκ ἔχετε διὰ τὸ μὴ αἰτεῖσθαι ὑμᾶς, 3 αἰτεῖτε καὶ οὐ λαμβάνετε, διότι κακῶς αἰτεῖσθε, ἵνα ἐν ταῖς ἡδοναῖς ὑμῶν δαπανήσητε.
Code: Select all
1 John 3.22-23: ὃ ἐὰν αἰτῶμεν | πιστεύσωμεν | λαμβάνομεν ἀπ´ αὐτοῦ
Matthew 7.8: πᾶς γὰρ ὁ αἰτῶν λαμβάνει
Matthew 21.22: πάντα ὅσα ἂν αἰτήσητε ἐν τῇ προσευχῇ πιστεύοντες λήμψεσθε
Mark 11.24: πάντα ὅσα προσεύχεσθε καὶ αἰτεῖσθε, πιστεύετε ὅτι ἐλάβετε, καὶ ἔσται ὑμῖν
Luke 11.10: πᾶς γὰρ ὁ αἰτῶν λαμβάνει
John 16.24: αἰτεῖτε καὶ λήμψεσθε
James 1.3: αἰτεῖτε καὶ οὐ λαμβάνετε, διότι κακῶς αἰτεῖσθε
If this parallel is meaningful, 1 John can be probably drawing either from Matthew or from Mark. John, like both Matthew 21.22 and Mark 11.24, makes receiving what one asks for contingent upon faith or belief; that is, receiving what one asks for, for John, depends upon following the commandments, the only one of which he mentions here is the commandment to believe or put faith in Jesus Christ. Whatever the overall trajectory of this saying, 1 John most closely matches both Matthew and Mark in its expression.
1 John 5.3: 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not heavy. / 3 Αὕτη γάρ ἐστιν ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ, ἵνα τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ τηρῶμεν, καὶ αἱ ἐντολαὶ αὐτοῦ βαρεῖαι οὐκ εἰσίν.
Matthew 11.30: 30 “For My yoke is comfortable, and My burden is light.” / 30 «Ὁ γὰρ ζυγός μου χρηστὸς καὶ τὸ φορτίον μου ἐλαφρόν ἐστιν.»
Deuteronomy 30.11-14: 11 “For this commandment which I am commanding you [ἡ ἐντολὴ αὕτη ἣν ἐγὼ ἐντέλλομαί σοι] today is not too difficult for you, nor is it far away. 12 It is not in heaven, that you could say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us and get it for us, and proclaim it to us, so that we may follow it?’ 13 Nor is it beyond the sea, that you could say, ‘Who will cross the sea for us and get it for us and proclaim it to us, so that we may follow it?’ 14 On the contrary, the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may follow it.”
1 John is running with Deuteronomy here. The concept is the same as what is found in Matthew 11.30, but the source passage is Deuteronomy 30.11-14, and there is no overlap of wording which would betray any mediation from Matthew.
Overall, then, if anything
, there are two instances of 1 John probably drawing from Mark as opposed to drawing from another of the synoptic gospels. There is one instance of 2 John probably drawing from Mark. I can find no instances of 1 John probably drawing from Matthew or from Luke instead of from Mark. This finding actually surprised me a bit; I kind of expected to find something more likely to have been drawn from Matthew than from Mark, especially since that is what my memory of MacDonald was telling me, which would have suggested either
that an easy inference (John the Elder did not know Matthew) from my proposal in the OP (Papias did not attribute his background for Matthew to John the Elder) is false or
that the assumption I gave in this post (John the Elder is the author of the Johannine epistles) is false. That I am unable (yet?) to falsify either one is interesting, to say the least, given how few references there are to Mark over and against Matthew (!) in the patristic authors. It remains plausible to me that at this early stage the author of the Johannine epistles was referring to Mark because Matthew was not yet known.