The folks that the proto-orthodox church called "Ebionites" may not have been the same as those who might have followed the Jesus movement under James' leadership.ebion wrote: ↑Sat Nov 18, 2023 9:54 amAs an aside on another topic; if the the Ebioneans consider Jesus to be a man born of Joseph, who acquired his divinity at the baptism by John, does this mean the Ebionaens felt Jesus survived the cruxifiction?)DCHindley wrote: ↑Sat Nov 11, 2023 6:29 am I have also researched this matter to death. You might like my research on why Hegesippus said that James was nicknamed "Oblias." There is a table showing a little Hebrew analysis, which you might find entertaining.
I think that the former (those referred to as Ebionites by 2nd or 3rd century Church fathers) were actually gentiles who had adopted Judaic ways.
The latter (the real followers of Jesus as governed by his brother James) would be the gentile followers of Jesus, which I had proposed were already (under Jesus) proselytes on the path to full conversion, if not already there. To me, Jesus had a vision of a future messianic age where gentiles might exist as subjects, but would live in such a bountiful land that even table scraps were enough to live on. But many had apparently converted. They wanted to share in the inheritance promised by God to Abram, it was as simple as that. This inheritance is about the only thing these Jesus followers had in common with Paul's followers.
Paul had opened the door to non-Jews participating in the future age inheritance simply on the basis of their faith that God will make it happen one day, something that he pointed out had justified Abraham in God's sight before he had himself circumcised, making them spiritual children to Abraham. In Paul's scheme, faithful gentiles should share as equal partners when it comes, whether they are living or resurrected from dead, not just be second class subjects living on scraps, however plentiful they would be.
I do not think any Jesus follower, whether gentile or Judean, thought of Jesus as divine. Highly elevated, sure. If he was not to be the Messianic leader (because of his death) he would surely be resurrected from the dead to serve as anointed leader when that day does come. This is the deification process utilized by Greeks and later Romans to grant honors to persons who had made a significant contribution towards bettering the lives of many. It was 100% ceremonial. These folks did not become "real" gods.
Honestly I would *not* expect Judeans, even those in the diaspora, to attribute divine status to Jesus. To me, this is something derived from former gentile Jesus followers who became "radicalized" by Judean-Gentile strife and social stratification that accompanied and followed upon the Judean war (66-74). They transformed Jesus the anointed ruler of a blessed coming age into some sort of divine redeemer mystery figure, which sounds similar to the Stauros myth of the Valentinians.
Don't forget that Birger Pearson also thinks that the same sort of social stresses of the war had caused Sethian gnosticism to develop from disillusioned Judean intellectuals (I think he had Philo in mind, but Philo did not know Hebrew and the scholars who created Sethian gnosticism did, so I tend to think they developed from rabbinic circles. I wonder how far back in time we can project Merkabah mysticism back to? It may not be far enough, but I think Merkabah mystics and Sethian gnosticism share a belief in a multilevel universe with a way up to the top for those in the know.
But that jus' me.