SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
StephenGoranson
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SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting program book, searchable, available here:

https://www.sbl-site.org/meetings/Congr ... etingId=41
StephenGoranson
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

Your reactions to word searches of SBL program abstracts may vary. Here are two of mine--merely provisional, pending knowing the full presentations.
One apparently supposes Epiphanius forged the Gospel of Ebionites. Though Epiphanius was exceedingly biased, he quoted many "heretics," confident he could refute them.
Another abstract may be unclear on Qumran mss of (non)use of the term "halacha."
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Secret Alias
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by Secret Alias »

Ebionite lied about meeting the Phibionites according to Ehrman so this is yet another impugning of his reliability. I have my concerns about his reporting on the Marcionites.
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

Epiphanius made very many mistakes. But the kinds of mistakes he made were often misinterpretations, rather than lying about who he met or lying about which texts he had read.

Though I tend to agree with Bart Ehrman very much more often than I disagree with him, I explained why I did not agree with Ehrman about Epiphanius meeting Phibionites-- on page 30 of my dissertation on Epiphanius, available here:

https://people.duke.edu/~goranson/Josep ... berias.pdf
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

For another point of view:
"Unfortunately, Epiphanius did not tell us exactly where he met his “herd of beasts.” Presumably he encountered them in Egypt, for he likened his encounter with Joseph’s escape from Potiphar’s wife. We know that Epiphanius travelled to Egypt as a young man for his education."

From:
The So-Called Stratiotics and Phibionites
Three Notes on the “Gnostics” of Epiphanius, Panarion 26
In: Vigiliae Christianae
Author: M. David Litwa1
Online Publication Date: 07 Oct 2021
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Secret Alias
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by Secret Alias »

The fact that Epiphanius was in Egypt is hardly a convincing argument for the authenticity of the encounter. What was it Plooij said?

“I think Epiphanius ought to be the last witness we should trust uncontrolled, especially in his testimonies on heretics and heretical writings. He combines all kinds of notices, rumours, and calumnies into abracadabra often completely incomprehensible." [A Primitive Text of the Diatessaron p. 78]
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

The words do speak to possible misinterpretations or misunderatandings but not to whom he met.
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Secret Alias
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by Secret Alias »

Assuming he wasn't an out and out liar. I don't understand. You're suggesting that because Epiphanius says he visited with a Christian sex cult it must be true? Why take Epiphanius at face value? What's the difference between Epiphanius and Adolf Hitler on the Jews or the Protocols of Zion? Maybe I am not understanding your point.

Are you suggesting (a) we accept ALL first hand eyewitness testimonies or (b) only from Church Fathers because they represent a higher standard of witness because they are Church Fathers?
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by StephenGoranson »

I gave reasons here, and in more detail in my dissertation on Epiphanius
https://people.duke.edu/~goranson/Josep ... berias.pdf
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Re: SBL 2022 presentation titles and abstracts

Post by Secret Alias »

It looks very interesting and well researched. It is a lot to read while supposedly working. I made my way to p. 15 and came across this:

"Epiphanius was of a mind and in a position to collect a prodigious mass of information on varieties of Christians and others; moreover he was sufficiently naive to present this information even though much of it testifies against his own often weak or artificial interpretation of history."

This argument cuts both ways. Let's put it in plain English. You are suggesting that Epiphanius was often too stupid to understand the texts he was citing. So Epiphanius is kind of stupid. But clearly the Phibionites are 'sandwiched' as it were between two sexualized sects - the Nicolatians and the Carpocratians. Irenaeus (from Hegesippus) identifies the Carpocratians as 'the first gnostics' so it hard to argue that the placement of the 'gnostics' in between the Nicolatians and Carpocratians is accidental. He's actively trying to prove the continued existence of sexualized Christians. It's hard to argue that he's 'misunderstood' the Phibionites and their gospel. It's furthering his argument that there really were sexualized Christians.

The account of the Nicolatians is parody at best:
Though (Nicolas) had a beautiful wife he had refrained from intercourse with her, as though in emulation of those whom he saw devoting themselves to God.He persevered for a while but could not bear to control his incontinence till the end. Instead, desiring to return like a dog to its vomit, he kept looking for poor excuses and inventing them in defense of his own intemperate passion. (< Being ashamed and repenting > would have done him more good!) Then, failing of his purpose, he simply began having sex with his wife. (5) But because he was ashamed of his defeat and suspected that he had been found out, he ventured to say, “Unless one copulates every day, he has no part in eternal life.”4 (1,6) For he had shifted from one pretense to another. Seeing that his wife was unusually beautiful and yet bore herself with modesty, he envied her. And, supposing that everyone was as lascivious as he, he began by constantly being offensive to his wife and making certain slanderous charges against her in speeches.5 And at length he degraded himself not only to normal sexual activity but to a blasphemous opinion, the harm of perverse teaching, and the deceit of the covert introduction of wickedness
Then Nicolas starts passing his wife around to his friends. After this stupid account we read about the Gnostics and the BS about the Phibionites and then the Carpocratians with their hetero/homosexual orgies. It's all nonsense. As silly as Josephus's crossdressing Jewish rebels. However you can't accuse Epiphanius of 'misunderstanding' the details he provides about the Phibionites. He's trying to prove the gnostics were all perverts. He either saw them or he didn't. It is obvious this is all a lie. But let's be fair. You have a tendency to believe lurid details for reasons I have never understood.
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