Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
Post Reply
maryhelena
Posts: 1585
Joined: Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:22 pm
Location: England

Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by maryhelena » Wed Aug 27, 2014 9:57 am

Carrier's chart on the gMark and Jesus ben Ananias parallels.

Table 6. Parallels of Jesus ‘Christ” with Jesus ben Ananias. Page 429-430

1 Both are named Jesus
2 Both come to Jerusalem during a major religious festival. Mk 14.2
= JW 6.301
3 Both entered the temple area to rant against the temple. Mk 11.15-17
= JW 6.301
4 During which both quote the same chapter of Jeremah. Jer. 7-11 in Mk;
Jer. 7.34 in JW
5 Both then preach daily in the temple. Mk 14.49
= JW 6.306
6 Both declared 'woe' unto Judea or the Jews. Mk 13.17 = JW
6.304, 306, 309
7 Both predict the temple will be destroyed. Mk 13.2
= JW 6.300, 309
8 Both are for this reason arrested by the Jews. Mk 14.43
= 6.302
9 Both are accused of speaking against the temple. Mk 14.58
= JW 6.302
10 Neither makes any defense of himself against the charges Mk 14.60
= JW 6.302
11 Both are beaten by the Jews Mk 14.65
= JW 6.302
12 Then both are taken to the Roman governor. Pilate in
Mk 15.1
= Albinus in
JW 6.302
13 Both are interrogated by the Roman governor. Mk 15.2-4
= JW 6.305
14 During which both are asked to identify themselves. Mk 15. 2
= JW 6.305
15 And yet again neither says anything in his defense. Mk 15 3-5
= JW 6.305
16 Both are then beaten by the Romans. Mk 15.15
= JW 6.304
17 In both cases the Roman governor decides he should release him.
18 ....but doesn't (Mark)....but does (JW) Mk 15 6-15 vs.
JW 6.305
19 Both are finally killed by the Romans (in Mark, by execution; in the JW, by artillery). Mk 15.34
= JW 6.308-309
20 Both utter a lament for themselves immediately before they die. Mk 15.34
= JW 6.309
21 Both die with a loud cry. Mk 15.37
= JW 6.309


Carrier's comments on the gMark and Josephan Jesus ben Ananias parallels:


Richard Carrier: On the Historicity of Jesus. Why We Might Have Reason for Doubt.

Page 428/429. "Indeed, even how Mark decides to construct the sequence of the Passion narrative appears to be based on the tale of another Jesus: Jesus ben Ananias, the 'Jesus of Jerusalem', an insane prophet active in the 60s ce who is then killed in the siege of Jerusalem (roughly in the year 70). His story is told by Josephus in the Jewish War, and unless Josephus invented him, his narrative must have been famous, famous enough for Josephus to know of it, and thus famous enough for Mark to know of it, too, and make use of it to model the tale of his own Jesus. Or if Josephus invented the tale, then Mark evidently used Josephus as a source. Because the parallels are too numerous to be at all probable as a coincidence. Some Mark does derive from elsewhere (or matches from elsewhere to a double purpose), but the overall scheme of the story in Josephus matches Mark too closely to believe that Mark just came up with the exact same scheme independently. And since it's not believable that Josephus invented a new story using Mark, we must conclude Mark invented his story using Josephus—or the same tale known to Josephus.

It would appear this story inspired the general outline of Mark's entire Passover Narrative. There are at least twenty significant parallels (and one reversal):

Page 430.

Given that Mark is essentially a Christian response to the Jewish War and the destruction of the Jewish temple, it is more than a little significant that he chose this Jesus to model his own Jesus after. This also tells us, yet again, how much Mark is making everything up. (It also confirms that Mark wrote after the Jewish War.)

Footnote: 86. Theodore Weeden, ‘Two Jesuses, Jesus of Jerusalem and Jesus of Nazareth: Provocative Parallels and Imaginative Imitation’, Forum N.S. 6.2 (Fall 203), pp 137-341

Ted Weeden:

Consequently, unusual parallelism, commonality and similarities between
literary works may suggest to us in the post-modern world mere accident or
coincidence. But in the Grec-Roman world a skilled reader would suspect
imitation before coincidence, and likely be right, that what was at hand was
the respected and expected imitation of one author by another, the text of
the former serving as the hypotext for the development of the hypertext of
the latter. In view of the appearance, at least, of the practice of
*MIMESIS* behind the parallelism of the two Jesus stories, I do not think
one, then, should chalk up the similarities between the two Jesus stories to
mere coincidence. I do not think that explaining the parallelism which
exists between the two stories as a matter of coincidence adequately
accounts for the narrative features that stories share in common. Rather
imitation, in my judgement, appears to be what drives the parallelism which
exists between the two "Jesus" stories.

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/cro ... pics/13040
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats

Stephan Huller
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by Stephan Huller » Wed Aug 27, 2014 10:25 am

As is always the case with Carrier he overstates the evidence. Does Jesus ben Ananias really make reference to the same section of Jeremiah?
There is another reference to canonical Jeremiah at War 6.251-2, the coincidence of dates, already noted; and there is also Jesus son of Ananias, again noted earlier, War 6.300-9, whose “daily” prophecies of doom may echo Jer. 7.34 as interpreted by Josephus. http://books.google.com/books?id=PfeZAA ... 22&f=false
and again for clarity:
According to Josephus, Jeremiah foretold the former fall “every day” (Ant. 10.89), which contrasts with both MT Jer. 26:8 and LXX Jer 33:8. It does, however, seem to anticipate Jesus son of Ananias, War 6.300–309, prophesying woe to Jerusalem “daily” (War 10.306, cf. 302). perhaps a minor point, the biblical text.
The point of course is that Carrier not only overstates his case but ignores differences between the two figures. This Jesus openly and continuously preaches against the temple, the canonical gospel's Jesus is mistaken for preaching against the temple and denies that he was speaking about a physical building.

Here is the passage in Josephus:
But, what is still more terrible, there was one Jesus, the son of Ananus, a plebeian and a husbandman, who, four years before the war began, and at a time when the city was in very great peace and prosperity, came to that feast whereon it is our custom for every one to make tabernacles to God in the temple, (23) began on a sudden to cry aloud, "A voice from the east, a voice from the west, a voice from the four winds, a voice against Jerusalem and the holy house, a voice against the bridegrooms and the brides, and a voice against this whole people!" This was his cry, as he went about by day and by night, in all the lanes of the city. However, certain of the most eminent among the populace had great indignation at this dire cry of his, and took up the man, and gave him a great number of severe stripes; yet did not he either say any thing for himself, or any thing peculiar to those that chastised him, but still went on with the same words which he cried before. Hereupon our rulers, supposing, as the case proved to be, that this was a sort of divine fury in the man, brought him to the Roman procurator, where he was whipped till his bones were laid bare; yet he did not make any supplication for himself, nor shed any tears, but turning his voice to the most lamentable tone possible, at every stroke of the whip his answer was, "Woe, woe to Jerusalem!" And when Albinus (for he was then our procurator) asked him, Who he was? and whence he came? and why he uttered such words? he made no manner of reply to what he said, but still did not leave off his melancholy ditty, till Albinus took him to be a madman, and dismissed him. Now, during all the time that passed before the war began, this man did not go near any of the citizens, nor was seen by them while he said so; but he every day uttered these lamentable words, as if it were his premeditated vow, "Woe, woe to Jerusalem!" Nor did he give ill words to any of those that beat him every day, nor good words to those that gave him food; but this was his reply to all men, and indeed no other than a melancholy presage of what was to come. This cry of his was the loudest at the festivals; and he continued this ditty for seven years and five months, without growing hoarse, or being tired therewith, until the very time that he saw his presage in earnest fulfilled in our siege, when it ceased; for as he was going round upon the wall, he cried out with his utmost force, "Woe, woe to the city again, and to the people, and to the holy house!" And just as he added at the last, "Woe, woe to myself also!" there came a stone out of one of the engines, and smote him, and killed him immediately; and as he was uttering the very same presages he gave up the ghost.
Here is the section from Jeremiah 7:9 - 15:
9 “‘Will you steal and murder, commit adultery and perjury,[a] burn incense to Baal and follow other gods you have not known, 10 and then come and stand before me in this house, which bears my Name, and say, “We are safe”—safe to do all these detestable things? 11 Has this house, which bears my Name, become a den of robbers to you? But I have been watching! declares the Lord. 12 “‘Go now to the place in Shiloh where I first made a dwelling for my Name, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 While you were doing all these things, declares the Lord, I spoke to you again and again, but you did not listen; I called you, but you did not answer. 14 Therefore, what I did to Shiloh I will now do to the house that bears my Name, the temple you trust in, the place I gave to you and your ancestors. 15 I will thrust you from my presence, just as I did all your fellow Israelites, the people of Ephraim.’
I am sorry I don't see Jesus b Ananias making reference to Jeremiah. I am not sure why it is so certain from any of this that Mark used Josephus. That a Catholic editor used Jeremiah later to cast Jesus into the role of Jeremiah (and thus dilute the original charge he was against the Law and prophets) is highly likely. But little more.

Stephan Huller
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by Stephan Huller » Wed Aug 27, 2014 10:30 am

The argument that Josephus's Jesus used Jeremiah is in the opinion of most scholars not particularly strong. Seth Schwartz noting that with respect to Jeremiah 7:34 and the quoted material from Josephus "... the resemblance is not particularly strong." http://books.google.com/books?id=N7MfAA ... 22&f=false

Stephan Huller
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by Stephan Huller » Wed Aug 27, 2014 10:35 am

The only people I can find who wholeheartedly accept that Jesus 'must' be citing Jeremiah are evangelicals. Here is Scot McKnight evangelical scholar and missionary:
These words are clearly a reenactment of Jeremiah (7:34; 16:9; 25:10; 33:11), and it is probable that Jesus ben Ananias sees his calling in terms of Jeremiah: he is to announce doom and gloom to the nation. Like Jeremiah, he was beaten (Josephus, B.J. 6.302), and again like Jeremiah, such persecution did not dissuade him from persisting in his message of destruction.

http://books.google.com/books?id=GLvGMp ... ah&f=false
Again I don't see any parallels other than the idea hinted at by McKnight - viz. both Jesus's were developed in the prophetic typology which is quite common in early Jewish and Christian literature (i.e. that they were beaten and killed because the spoke the word of God). But this hardly allows for any room to claim that one Jesus was based on the other. Rather I think there was a typology of the suffering prophet which extended to but went far beyond the similarities of the two Jesuses. Carrier has once again is making mountains out of molehills.

If anything the underlying typology was Jeremiah but that's all.

maryhelena
Posts: 1585
Joined: Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:22 pm
Location: England

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by maryhelena » Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:21 am

Rebecca Gray on Jesus ben Ananias reference to Jeremiah.

PROPHETIC FIGURES IN LATE
SECOND TEMPLE JEWISH PALESTINE

The Evidence from Josephus
Rebecca Gray

Page 159

According to Josephus, Jesus was "an unskilled" or "unlearned peasant"
War 6.300). He came to Jerusalem for the autumn festival of Tabernacles (Sukkoth), probably in the year 62
c.e. At one point during the festival he stood up in the temple and cried out:

A voice from the east,
a voice from the west,
a voice from the four winds;
a voice against Jerusalem and the sanctuary,
a voice against the bridegroom and the bride,
a voice against all the people. (6.30!)

He repeated his message throughout the festival, and and was eventually
arrested and punished by the Jewish magistrates of Jerusalem.

Page 161

The mention of bridegroom and bride recalls Jeremiah 7.34; 16.9; 25.10; and 33.11. The bridegroom
and bride were apparently singled out, in the case of both Jeremiah and Jesus, as those who had most reason to rejoice and be glad.

Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats

Stephan Huller
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by Stephan Huller » Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:36 am

Weak argument

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 6146
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by MrMacSon » Wed Aug 27, 2014 12:21 pm

Stephan Huller wrote: Does Jesus ben Ananias really make reference to the same section of Jeremiah?
but it may not be Jesus ben Ananias making reference to a section of Jeremiah? It may just be Josephus's spin?

Richard Carrier: On the Historicity of Jesus. Why We Might Have Reason for Doubt.

Page 428/429 " ... His [Jesus ben Ananias] story is told by Josephus in the Jewish War, and unless Josephus invented him, his narrative must have been famous, famous enough for Josephus to know of it, and thus famous enough for Mark to know of it, too, and make use of it to model the tale of his own Jesus. Or if Josephus invented the tale, then Mark evidently used Josephus as a source. Because the parallels are too numerous to be at all probable as a coincidence.


Stephan Huller
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by Stephan Huller » Wed Aug 27, 2014 12:55 pm

But the parallel between what Jesus (Christ) says from Jeremiah and what Jesus the son of Ananias is alleged to have paraphrased from Jeremiah is weak. It isn't strong enough to support the claims of direct borrowing.

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 6146
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by MrMacSon » Wed Aug 27, 2014 1:05 pm

How do we know Jesus did say things from Jeremiah? Other than a narrative that includes saying from Jeremiah?
(The sections of the gospels that refer to OT texts or sayings do not reference or refer to the those OT texts?)
Last edited by MrMacSon on Wed Aug 27, 2014 3:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

maryhelena
Posts: 1585
Joined: Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:22 pm
Location: England

Re: Richard Carrier on gMark parallel with Jesus ben Ananias

Post by maryhelena » Wed Aug 27, 2014 1:22 pm

Another chart re gMark and the Josephan Jesus ben Ananius
Neil Godfrey: As far as I am aware the following observations were first made by Theodore Weeden (author of 'Mark: traditions in conflict') in informal email discussion.

http://vridar.info/xorigins/josephus/2jesus.htm

Jesus in the Gospel of Mark Jesus in Josephus' Jewish War
Primary subject of story is named Jesus Primary subject of the story is named Jesus ben Ananius[Jewish War, 6, 300]
Jesus is an artisan (Greek 'teknon', or translated 'carpenter').
(The artisan class ranked below peasants) [6:3]
Jesus is described as a low class unskilled rustic peasant [J.W.6:301]
Jerusalem leaders believe Jesus is demon possessed [3:22] Jerusalem leaders believe Jesus is demon possessed [J.W.6, 301]
Some people thought Jesus was out of his mind [3:21ff] Some thought Jesus was a maniac [J.W.6,305]
Jesus was at times teaching daily in the Temple [14:49] Jesus was daily in the Temple repeating his message [J.W.6,306]
In the Temple during time of a holy festival (Passover) [14:2] In the Temple during the time of a holy festival (Tabernacles) [J.W.6,301]
Jesus cites Jeremiah 7:11 (LXX, speaking against defilement of Temple)
(conflated with Isa.56:7) to denounce practices in the Temple [11:17]
Jesus cites Jeremiah 7:34 (speaking against the people of Judah and Jerusalem)
in his harangue against Jerusalem, the Temple and the people. [J.W.6, 301]
Declares Woes on the people of Jerusalem/Judea [13:17] Declares Woes on the people of Jerusalem/Judea [J.W.6,304,306,309]
Pronounces doom on the Temple [13:2] Pronounces doom on the Temple [J.W.6,300,309]
Arrested by the Jerusalem leaders [14:43] Arrested by the Jerusalem leaders [J.W.6,302]
Accused of speaking against the Temple [14:58] Accused of speaking against the Temple [J.W.6,302]
Made no defence for himself in face of these charges of speaking
against the Temple [14:60f]
Made no defence for himself in face of these charges of speaking
against the Temple [J.W.6,302]
Physically abused at the Jewish hearing [14:65] Physically abused at the Jewish hearing [J.W.6,302]
Following Jewish hearing the Jerusalem authorities delivered him to the Roman procurator (Pilate) [15:1] Following Jewish hearing the Jerusalem authorities delivered him to the Roman procurator (Albinus) [J.W.6,302f]
Interrogated by the governor (Pilate) in the Roman hearing [15:2-4] Interrogated by the governor (Albinus) in the Roman hearing [J.W.6,305]
During their Roman interrogation the governor asks him to disclose his identity [15:2] During their Roman interrogation the governor asks him to disclose his identity [J.W.6,305]
He is silent before governor [15:3-5] He is silent before governor [J.W.6,305]
The procurator moved to release Jesus (but failed) [15:6-15] The procurator moved to release Jesus (successfully) [J.W.6,305]
Jesus was scourged at end of his Roman hearing [15:15] Jesus was scourged at end of his Roman hearing [J.W.6,304]
Killed by Roman soldiers [15:16,20-24] Killed by Roman soldiers (although unluckily by chance) [J.W.6,308-9]
Uttered a personal woeful cry just before his death [15:34] Uttered a personal woeful cry just before his death [J.W.6,309]
Died with a loud cry [15:27] Died with a loud cry [J.W.6,309]
Mark uses the word "naos" for Temple in the contexts of the charge
against Jesus that he spoke against the Temple [14:58; 15:29; and the vindication
of Jesus' dismissal of the Temple in 15:38]. Elsewhere Mark always uses "hieros"
for the Temple [11:11,15,16,27; 12:35; 13:1,3; 14:49]
Josephus uses the word "naos" for Temple in the account of his Jesus'
declarations against it. [J.W.6,301,309]

Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats

Post Reply