The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

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John2
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by John2 »

Fourth Philosophers also opposed the oral Torah (Ant. 18.1.1: "the customs of our fathers were altered"; cf. Mk. 7:5: "Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders?") but agreed "in all other things with the Pharisaic notions" (Ant. 18.1.6), like resurrection of the dead (on which Christianity is based) and the use of tefillin (which were found among the DSS, and in Mt. 23:5 Jesus only opposes the use of ostentatiously large tefillin).

And in Ant. 18.1.6 Josephus says that Fourth Philosophers "also do not value dying any kinds of death ... And since this immovable resolution of theirs is well known to a great many, I shall speak no further about that matter; nor am I afraid that any thing I have said of them should be disbelieved, but rather fear, that what I have said is beneath the resolution they show when they undergo pain,"and Jesus exhibits a similar mindset (e.g. Mk 8:31: "that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again").

So I figure people like this had a similar spiel about this stuff (opposition to the oral Torah, retention of "Pharisaic notions" like resurrection of the dead and the use of tefillin, the belief that "one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth," the belief that they were under "divine inspiration," and the willingness to suffer and die for their cause). Jesus' "I am He" remark sums it up perfectly, I think.
Last edited by John2 on Fri May 06, 2022 5:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
John2
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by John2 »

And the Fourth Philosophy was new (Ant. 18.1.1: "this system of philosophy, which we were before unacquainted withal"), and so was Christianity (Mk. 1:27: "All the people were amazed and began to ask one another, “What is this? A new teaching with authority!"). Jesus couldn't have been a Pharisee, Sadducee or Essene, because those sects were known.
andrewcriddle
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by andrewcriddle »

Sinouhe wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 7:13 am
  • 4Q491/4Q471 - The Self Glorification Hymn (see Table 1)
The author of this enigmatic and, among scholars, disputed hymn is unknown, and only fragments of it are extant. It was written in the late Hasmonaean or early Herodian period—that is, the second half of the first century BCE. In it, an unidentified hero boasts that he was elevated among and even above the angels in heaven.

Peter Schafer - Two Gods in Heaven (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Schäfer)
"Juxtaposed with the statement on glory in line 8 is the odd expression mi la-vuz nehshav bi, which was translated above as “Who has been despised on my account?” and literally might mean, “Who has been attributed to me, to be despised?”—that is, Who is despised and thus associated with me? The answer here too is probably, No one! The speaker is despised, and with respect to this particular contempt, no one is like him. This refers directly to the suffering servant of God in Isaiah, about whom it is also said that he is “despised” (nivzeh), a “man of suffering,” who “has borne our infir- mities” (Isa. 53:3–4).
The author thus models himself at the same time as the suffering servant of God in Isaiah 53, thereby presumably placing himself in the messianic interpretative tradition of the Suffering Servant Songs. This could be interpreted as a further reference to the historical Teacher of Righteousness.
I have argued in favor of “some kind of Teacher of Righteousness redivivus: the founder of the sect who was imagined by his later followers as elevated into heaven and expected to return at the end of time as the priestly Messiah in order to lead the members of the community in the final battle.
Whoever the hero of the Self- Glorification Hymn is, and whatever his function at the end of days, he is a human being who in a unique manner is exalted into heaven and enthroned there. We do not hear of anything comparable regarding any other human—with the exception of Enoch, who becomes the Son of Man in the Similitudes of the Ethiopic Book of Enoch.
Our hero is not just one angel among many angels, and it is not said that he will be transformed into an angel. Rather, he is and remains a human being who is elevated to the status of a god, and as such will return to earth".


Capture d’écran 2022-05-06 à 15.15.18.png
These are very fragmentary texts and using 4Q471 and 4Q491 to interpret each other despite their clear differences is problematic.
See Old texts and modern mirages by Martinez.

Andrew Criddle
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Sinouhe
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by Sinouhe »

andrewcriddle wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 9:55 pm These are very fragmentary texts and using 4Q471 and 4Q491 to interpret each other despite their clear differences is problematic.
See Old texts and modern mirages by Martinez.

Andrew Criddle
Yes these are fragmentary texts but it diverge only on details.
Most of the searchers accept the probable common origin of these 2 texts. In my opinion, studying these differences is not really important or interesting because the most likely option would be that the exalted man in the 2 texts is the same person.


  • Geza Vermes - THE COMPLETE DEAD SEA SCROLLS
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  • Israel Knhol - THE DATE AND INNOVATION OF THE MESSIANIC HYMNS
The messianic hymns exist in two parallel versions. Version one of the hymns is found in three different manuscript : 1Qh, 4QH and 4Q471.
The second version is to be found in a single manuscript, 4Q491.
  • Eric Miller - THE SELF-GLORIFICATION HYMNREEXAMINED
As outlined by Esther Eshel, the text that she has labeled as the Self-Glorification Hymn is reflected in four separate witnesses within the
Qumran corpus: 4Q471b, 4Q491, 4Q427, and lQH XXV-XXVI.
Of all the editors of these varied texts for the Discoveries in the Judean Desert series, Eshel provides us with the fullest comparative discussion in her
assignment to review 4Q471b.
Although the details vary in the text of these four fragments, the thread that unites them all is the description of an individual who boasts of being stationed among the angels and yet has a glory superior to all the angels.
andrewcriddle
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by andrewcriddle »

If one ignores the tentative reconstructions (in square brackets), then in 4Q491 we have a being, who may be either human or angelic, who boasts of being seated on a heavenly throne and who has a glory superior to all the angels. In 4Q471 and parallels we have a human figure who has apparently suffered as God's righteous servant (accepting some probable but not certain textual restoration) and who has been given a status surpassing the angels. Problems arise when one regards the speaker of 4Q471, who is clearly a human figure (singular or collective) associated with the Qumran community, as the same person as the speaker of 4Q491 whom the original editor Baillet identified with the Archangel Michael. The plausibility of this identification partly depends on the disputed question as to whether or not 4Q491 is part of a version of the War Scroll.

Andrew Criddle

Edited to Add
I'm afraid I won't be able to contribute to this forum again till Tuesday.
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Sinouhe
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by Sinouhe »

andrewcriddle wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 11:45 pm If one ignores the tentative reconstructions (in square brackets), then in 4Q491 we have a being, who may be either human or angelic, who boasts of being seated on a heavenly throne and who has a glory superior to all the angels. In 4Q471 and parallels we have a human figure who has apparently suffered as God's righteous servant (accepting some probable but not certain textual restoration) and who has been given a status surpassing the angels.
Imo, the 2 texts are too close to be different .
Same context, same references, same order :
Capture d’écran 2022-05-07 à 10.36.33.png
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Joseph L Angel - THE LITURGICAL-ESCHATOLOGICAL PRIEST OF THE SELF-GLORIFICATION HYMN
It will suffice to note that the thematic and linguistic affinities between 4Q491 11 I on the one hand, and the composite text constructed out of the three Hodayot witnesses on the other, have been enough to convince most, but not all, scholars that these manuscripts represent two recensions of the same work.
For the generally accepted view, see, e.g., J. Duhaime, The War Texts (Com- panion to the Qumran Scrolls 6; London: T. & T. Clark International, 2004), 35-40. To my knowledge, the dissenting position is expressed only by García Martínez, “Old Texts and Modern Mirages,” 105-25, esp. 114-18.



andrewcriddle wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 11:45 pm Problems arise when one regards the speaker of 4Q471, who is clearly a human figure (singular or collective) associated with the Qumran community, as the same person as the speaker of 4Q491 whom the original editor Baillet identified with the Archangel Michael.
Almost every scholars had followed Morton Smith and discredited the identification with Michael.
Most of them identify this mysterious entity with the teacher of righteousness or the eschatological priest.
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MrMacSon
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by MrMacSon »

Sinouhe wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 7:13 am Peter Schafer - Two Gods in Heaven:
Among the excerpts you quoted in the Opening Post is

As a suffering Messiah, he ["[t]he speaker, definitely a human being"] is raised up in an unparalleled manner onto a throne in heaven, which even the Israelite kings cannot claim for themselves. We can only speculate what caused the speaker to relate the aspect of suffering on himself in a virtually paradoxical manner: in addition to the tradition of the suffering Messiah, it is possibly the hostility of his opponents who question his mission and even attempt to take his life. [p.36]

And afterwards, at the very end of chapter 3:

Certainly, “in no case does [his] ‘divinization’ impinge on the supremacy of the Most High, the God of Israel”^ and the distance between our hero and God remains intact. And yet the divinization of a human being can hardly be driven any further. Israel Knohl* therefore sees our hero not simply as another Qumran Messiah but instead as a real, direct precursor to Jesus, who then influenced Jesus and the Christian notion of the Messiah. [p.37]

^ John J. Collins, The Scepter and the Star: Messianism in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2010), 164

* Israel Knohl, The Messiah before Jesus: The Suffering Servant of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000), 42ff.
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Sinouhe
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by Sinouhe »

MrMacSon wrote: Sat May 07, 2022 12:55 am
Sinouhe wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 7:13 am Peter Schafer - Two Gods in Heaven:
Among the excerpts you quoted in the Opening Post is

As a suffering Messiah, he ["[t]he speaker, definitely a human being"] is raised up in an unparalleled manner onto a throne in heaven, which even the Israelite kings cannot claim for themselves. We can only speculate what caused the speaker to relate the aspect of suffering on himself in a virtually paradoxical manner: in addition to the tradition of the suffering Messiah, it is possibly the hostility of his opponents who question his mission and even attempt to take his life. [p.36]

And afterwards, at the very end of chapter 3:

Certainly, “in no case does [his] ‘divinization’ impinge on the supremacy of the Most High, the God of Israel” and the distance between our hero and God remains intact. And yet the divinization of a human being can hardly be driven any further. Israel Knohl therefore sees our hero not simply as another Qumran Messiah but instead as a real, direct precursor to Jesus, who then influenced Jesus and the Christian notion of the Messiah. [p.7]

Yes and i totally agree with him on this one.
A must read book.
lsayre
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by lsayre »

John2 wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 4:08 pm
“Men of Israel,” he said, “consider carefully what you are about to do to these men. Some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men joined him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and drew away people after him. He too perished, and all his followers were scattered.

So in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone. Let them go! For if their purpose or endeavor is of human origin, it will fail.
Why would 400 men follow someone just because they purport to be "somebody"? Did Theudas actually claim to be a (or the) Messiah? Or did he perhaps carry a shoe, or a gourd? :-)
John2
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Re: The Messiah in the Dead Sea Scrolls - Two Suffering Servants in Judea ?

Post by John2 »

lsayre wrote: Sat May 07, 2022 4:11 pm
John2 wrote: Fri May 06, 2022 4:08 pm
“Men of Israel,” he said, “consider carefully what you are about to do to these men. Some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men joined him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and drew away people after him. He too perished, and all his followers were scattered.

So in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone. Let them go! For if their purpose or endeavor is of human origin, it will fail.
Why would 400 men follow someone just because they purport to be "somebody"? Did Theudas actually claim to be a (or the) Messiah? Or did he perhaps carry a shoe, or a gourd? :-)

Well, we have to bear in mind that the number one motivating idea for Fourth Philosophers was that "one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth," which sounds messianic to me. And the DSS, the majority of which are dated to the Herodian era, are also very messianic. And Josephus says that "many" Fourth Philosophic "wise men" subscribed to this idea, and in Mk. 13:6 Jesus says that "Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am He,’ and will deceive many."

I suppose there could be something to the idea that Theudas was Joshua redivivus, given his plan to part and cross the Jordan in reverse, but it amounts to more or less the same thing to me (i.e., Fourth Philosophic messianic crazy talk). In 4Q175 a verse from Joshua is cited along with citations of the True Prophet and Balaam's Star Prophecy., and as noted here:

The [Star] prophecy was often employed during the troubled years that led up to the Jewish Revolt, the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem (70 CE) and the suicidal last stand of the Sicarii at Masada in 73 CE. The Star Prophecy appears in the Qumran texts called the Dead Sea scrolls ... The Star Prophecy was applied to the coming Messiah himself in contemporary radical Jewish documents, such as the apocalyptic War Scroll found at Qumran.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Prophecy



Again, I think Jesus sums up this line of thinking perfectly in Mk. 13:6 ("Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am He,’ and will deceive many").


https://www.google.com/books/edition/Th ... frontcover
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