Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
Kunigunde Kreuzerin
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Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin »

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Many have undertaken to draw up a new account of the things that have been fulfilled in the gospel of Mark, just as they were handed down to us by him who from the first saw it himself in a vision and was a servant of Paul’s word. With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decide to write an orderly account for you, my excellent friends, so that you may know the certainty of the things you will be taught.

Seriously, I've been thinking for a long time about writing a new Markan pericope. Just for fun, but with all seriousness. :mrgreen: :ugeek:

In this thread I will discuss what imho a Markan pericope is, what literary models Mark had, and where his imitators failed or did excellent work.

I want to look for a place in GMark to add a new pericope, find appropriate subject matter, wording, and form, and then write it down.

I hope for a lot of stimulating criticism from you. :cheers:
rgprice
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by rgprice »

This si quite old now, and I've made significant revisions to the concept, but its a starting place: http://www.rationalrevolution.net/artic ... l_mark.htm
Kunigunde Kreuzerin
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin »

rgprice wrote: Wed Sep 14, 2022 10:20 am This si quite old now, and I've made significant revisions to the concept, but its a starting place: http://www.rationalrevolution.net/artic ... l_mark.htm
... but a goodie

I always liked this essay and agree with most of your points. The following will be helpful here

- GMark is an allegorical and parabolic writing
- has literary allusions to the Hebrew bible (LXX)
- was written in reaction to the Jewish war
- is mirroring Paul‘s theology (faith, grace etc.)
- messianic secret, Jesus as a suffering servant
- (self-)criticism of some traditional Jewish practices and views
- disciples as uncomprehending followers
schillingklaus
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by schillingklaus »

Mk is already one huge fake.
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John T
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by John T »

Don't forget Paul kept Sunday as the sabbath instead of Saturday. Not!

Makes just as much sense doesn't it?
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Sinouhe
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by Sinouhe »

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote: Thu Sep 15, 2022 1:38 am
rgprice wrote: Wed Sep 14, 2022 10:20 am This si quite old now, and I've made significant revisions to the concept, but its a starting place: http://www.rationalrevolution.net/artic ... l_mark.htm
... but a goodie

I always liked this essay and agree with most of your points. The following will be helpful here

- GMark is an allegorical and parabolic writing
- has literary allusions to the Hebrew bible (LXX)
- was written in reaction to the Jewish war
- is mirroring Paul‘s theology (faith, grace etc.)
- messianic secret, Jesus as a suffering servant
- (self-)criticism of some traditional Jewish practices and views
- disciples as uncomprehending followers
I agree with all your list.
But I would like to add that Jesus is not only the suffering servant.
The suffering is only one characteristic of Isaiah’s servant.
Jesus is the full embodiment of that servant.
I don't know why scholars focus primarily on the suffering of the servant and leave out the rest.

Isaiah’s servant is the principal source for the messianic characters in the Intertestamental literature.
Kunigunde Kreuzerin
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin »

Sinouhe wrote: Fri Sep 16, 2022 4:40 am But I would like to add that Jesus is not only the suffering servant.
The suffering is only one characteristic of Isaiah’s servant.
Jesus is the full embodiment of that servant.
I don't know why scholars focus primarily on the suffering of the servant and leave out the rest.

Isaiah’s servant is the principal source for the messianic characters in the Intertestamental literature.
I've never thought about it but you're right. The shortening of this figure to a suffering servant is a good example of following popular catchphrases without paying attention to the exact content.

However, I think there are some things in making a Markan fake that are easier to accomplish and some that are harder to decide and create. It seems best to me to start with a rough definition of form, length and some abstract content.

Below are some quotes from our own Ulan, Roger Parvus and two scholars that revolve around and attempt to explain a Markan specificity. Controversial points need not be decided here. It only applies to reproduce the phenomenon that they are trying to explain. The fake pericope must be a typically Markan pericope and I think there are subtle literary differences even to Matthew and Luke.

Roger Parvus, A Simonian Origin for Christianity, Part 16: Mark as Allegory
This could also explain a puzzling feature of Mark: “the way it consists of a number of unrelated paragraphs set down one after another with very little organic connexion, almost like a series of snapshots placed side by side in a photograph album” (The Gospel of Saint Mark, by D.E. Nineham, p. 27). To account for this most scholars, including Nineham himself, have recourse to a tradition hypothesis. Mark, they surmise, was probably working with collections of traditional material about Jesus that consisted of essentially independent stories. But it seems to me that the disconnected character of Mark would be explained equally well by Volkmar’s allegorical hypothesis. In this scenario Mark’s primary focus was on Paul, not Jesus, so he had no interest in providing a connected and developed portrayal of Jesus. His focus was on constructing Jesus episodes whose value lay in the various ways they pointed to Paul.


K.L. Schmidt, The Framework of the Story of Jesus
On the whole, however, there is no life of Jesus in the sense of an unfolding life story, nor is there any chronological outline for the story of Jesus. There are only individual stories and pericopes that have been set into a framework.

Ulan wrote: Sat Feb 20, 2016 7:10 am There have been enough suggestions that gMark is basically a performance piece, due to all scenes being static and all movements being off-screen. In such a scenario, it's easy to imagine something like the Paul & Barnabas Show moving from town to town, performing the gospel up to the cliffhanger with the empty tomb and the not-telling women in the last scene. Then they may end with the invitation "If you want to know more, come tonight to the house of Timotheus" ...

Tim Geddert, Mark, Overview Mark 1:1-8:26
Mark’s gospel has often been described as action-packed. Jesus … seems always to be on the move. The dramatic action appears in many different scenes (synagogue, house, open space, boat trips, mountain retreats, and so on). Jesus is engaged in many kinds of activities (calling and training disciples, teaching, driving out demons, prayer, miracles of many kinds, conflict with enemies, and more). Often Jesus’ plans change quickly, as the crowds throng around him or his disciples misunderstand him. Some have compared Mark’s narrative technique to a slide show. A picture flashed on the screen is replaced with another, almost before the first can be studied ... The pace is quick.

gryan
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by gryan »

Kunigunde Kreuzerin,

What is your interpretation of "just as he told you" in Mark 16:7?

"But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.

Of course, in reference to geographical place, there is Mark 14:28,

"But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”

My question has more to do with what sort of body they would "see" him in. If Mark was as Pauline as I think he was, I'm inclined to read what Jesus says ten verses later as proleptic for how he would reveal himself in the resurrection:

Mark 14:38
"Watch and pray so that you will not enter into temptation. For the spirit is willing (πρόθυμον), but the flesh is weak.”

I read the contrast of weak flesh and willing human spirit as very Pauline:
Cf. "I am willing (πρόθυμον) to preach the gospel." (Rom 1:15)

This is just me, but if I were inventing an explicit statement of Mark's implicit (perhaps "secret") idea, I think Jesus was promising that after he had died in the body of "the weak, flesh", he would live on and reveal himself in a spiritual body, to be manifest "in the mortal flesh" of those to whom he had reveled himself; i.e. in harmony with 1 Cor 15:5-9 together with 2 Corinthians 4:11. Note also, as one of my seminary professors pointed out, the "young man dressed in a white robe" at the empty tomb may have been a mortal human messenger with a spiritual message:

Mark 16:5b-7
"...they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, 'Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.'"
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin »

gryan wrote: Mon Sep 19, 2022 6:52 am This is just me, but if I were inventing an explicit statement of Mark's implicit (perhaps "secret") idea, I think Jesus was promising that after he had died in the body of "the weak, flesh", he would live on and reveal himself in a spiritual body, to be manifest "in the mortal flesh" of those to whom he had reveled himself; i.e. in harmony with 1 Cor 15:5-9 together with 2 Corinthians 4:11.
Mmh, that's possible, but I couldn't come up with a specific verse that might confirm that.

imho Mark 12:25 shows that he agreed with Paul (1 Cor 15:42-50) that one is not resurrected in an earthly body (flesh and blood) but in a heavenly body.

I once had a discussion with Ben on Mark 16:7, and we both agreed that προάγει is not to be understood in the sense of "earlier going before, preceding in time", but in the sense of "going in front, guiding, leading the way." That's why I've assumed so far that "seeing" is not to be understood physically, but intellectually in the sense of "recognizing".
gryan
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Re: Faking Mark - the most honest attempt ever made

Post by gryan »

Mark
ὅταν γὰρ ἐκ νεκρῶν ἀναστῶσιν, οὔτε γαμοῦσιν οὔτε γαμίζονται, ἀλλ’ εἰσὶν ὡς ἄγγελοι ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς.

Re: "like angels in heaven"

In his exegiesis of "there can be no masculine gender and feminine gender" (Gal 3:28, οὐκ ἔνι ἄρσεν καὶ θῆλυ), Doug Campbell argues that Paul's was speaking apocalyptically of an abolition of gender. Then Campbell explicitly likens it to the synoptic saying of Jesus about being "like angels in heaven".

I take this to be realized eschatology on Paul's part. I read the Gospels similarly. This is the kind of teaching that leads to the monastic life, a life sometimes likened to becoming angels. Paul himself spoke of "an angel from heaven" preaching a gospel (ἢ ἄγγελος ἐξ οὐρανοῦ εὐαγγελίσηται ὑμῖν, Gal 1:8), and said his audience in Galatia received him "as an angel of God" (ὡς ἄγγελον Θεοῦ ἐδέξασθέ με, Gal 4:14).

I think these teachings were so successful because; on one hand, they were really about transformation of life in the here and now (for the few who became participants in the apocalypse before mortal death); and on the other hand, they were entertaining and surprising enough to draw in people who didn't get it on the mystical level.

So IMHO, the real "recognition" was the ability to "see" the risen Christ in mortal human beings, and to become as Christ together in love and service. The resurrection stories were more or less thinly veiled stories of this sort of recognition.

Sorry about becoming a bit over-enthusiastic.

PS. I think Paul's "flesh and blood" might refer to natural family ties that cannot inherit the Kingdom (or it might not). Be that as it may, "flesh and bone, you see me having" (Lk 24:39) might not contradict Paul--it might harmonize with Paul's realized eschatology when he says, "we manifest the life of Jesus on our mortal flesh".
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