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20 hours ago, PaulS said:

I'm not sure that was ever Jesus' message or actually was happening during his time.  Really the first we hear about that sort of approach was after Jesus' died and Paul rose to prominence.  I think Paul broadened the Jesus message to include all - I don't think that was Jesus' intention.  Paul too thought the kingdom was imminent, but he was pushing the 'all persons' barrow which is where I think we get that from. 

 

12 hours ago, thormas said:

I agree that Jesus was human with human emotions and also that he preached for the Jews. However as a knowledgeable Jew he would have known that when the Kingdom came all the empires of the world would come to worship the one God and 'live in the Kingdom.' Thus is what Paul focused on and this understanding in the hands of one such as Jesus is revealed in a broader reach that was 'inclusive' of non-Jews.  

While we don't know all of Jesus's interactions, the gospels do present him as one who is not bound (a Spongism) by his Judaism in a way that he rejects those who are not Jews. He is shown as open and interacting and caring for the Samaritan woman and the Roman soldier. Did it happen? Who knows. Was it an accurate or true portrayal of the Jesus who was known/remembered - probably.

My comment here is to both you guys. I keep running into this. People and even scholars keep saying that Jesus just came for the Jews and that it was Paul and only Paul that taught to non-Jews. I keep thinking that this is not exactly what I remember reading in the Gospels. I've taken sometime to research this a bit. It would take a month or more to go through out all the Gospels and find every incident, but this is what I've found so far:

John 4:1–42 Jesus and the Woman of Samaria: Not only did she become a believer but many of her fellow Samaritans did also. Jesus stayed and taught in Samaria for 2 days.

John 4: 46 Jesus Heals an Official’s Son: This was in Cana in Galilee. It doesn’t specifically say if the “official” was Jewish or not, but it is possible that he may not have been.

 Matthew 15:21 The Faith of a Canaanite Woman: This was in the district of Tyre and Sidon. Jesus heals the woman’s daughter. The same story is also reflected in Mark 7: 24-31

 Luke 7:1-10 Jesus heals a Roman centurion’s servant: This was in Capernaum.

Luke 6: 17 Jesus Teaches and Heals:  He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon. This is just after Luke’s version of Jesus selecting the twelve Apostles and just before Luke’s version of the Sermon on the Mount and his teaching the Beatitudes. These were taught to the afore mentioned multitude of people, including those from Tyre and Sidon. Tyre and Sidon are Canaanite areas and considered to be pagan in the New Testament.

 Mark 5:1-20 Jesus heals a man with a demon called legion and sends them into a herd of pigs. We all know that Jews don’t eat ham, this is not a Jewish territory. It is called “the region of the Gerasenes”. This is a Gentile, culturally Greek area. Jesus tells the man to tell his own people about this, which he does in the Decaplis, (ten cities). The New Testament doesn’t say that all the people became believers, but it does say that they were all “amazed”.

 

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

Many New Testament manuscripts refer to the "Country of the Gadarenes" or "Gerasenes" rather than the Gergesenes. Both Gerasa and Gadara were cities to the east of the Sea of Galilee and the River Jordan. They were both Gentile cities filled with citizens who were culturally more Greek than Semitic; this would account for the pigs in the biblical account. Gerasa and Gadara are accounted for in historical accounts (by writers such as Pliny the Elder and Josephus) and by archaeological research. Today they are the modern towns of Jerash and Umm Qais.

A third city, Hippos, was similar in character to Gadara and Gerasa, and it may fit the biblical account even better. It was located on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, whereas Gerasa and Gadara were several kilometers south-east of it. Hippos, Gerasa, and Gadara were all counted in the Decapolis, an informal grouping of Greco-Roman cities just south of the ancient city of Caesarea Philippi.

 

It also seems to me that it is not always clear what type of people Jesus is talking to and teaching. Were they all Jews? Were they a mix of different people(s)? I've looked for a good study on this and haven't found one yet. Myself, I don't go with the standard sayings that Jesus taught and only came for the Jews or that this is evident in the Gospels.

Thanks for reading

---------------------------------------

Edit>

I'm doing a little thing like Burl did below, so people can just jump to the link

 

Jesus Ministers to a Great Multitude

TOOLS Luk 6:17  And he came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon

Jump to the link and one can see when and where and what Jesus taught at this place and time, as well as to whom 

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Time to throw AJ into all this.  

Forgiveness is the only way to rid yourself of resentment.  It does nothing for the other, but everything for the self.

I agree.

Mat 15:22 - And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.”
Mat 15:23 - But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.”
Mat 15:24 - He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
Mat 15:25 - But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.”
Mat 15:26 - And he answered, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.”
Mat 15:27 - She said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.”
Mat 15:28 - Then Jesus answered her, “O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed instantly.
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12 hours ago, thormas said:

While we don't know all of Jesus's interactions, the gospels do present him as one who is not bound (a Spongism) by his Judaism in a way that he rejects those who are not Jews. He is shown as open and interacting and caring for the Samaritan woman and the Roman soldier. Did it happen? Who knows. Was it an accurate or true portrayal of the Jesus who was known/remembered - probably.

Maybe, but I would argue there are few grounds to argue for the Roman story as a 'probable' experience of Jesus.  There seems to be more against Jesus healing a Roman than for it.  There is no other mention of Jesus anywhere in the Gospels of saying or doing a single kind thing for a Roman other than this one story in Matthew, repeated in Luke.  It's not in Mark or John.  Maybe Mathew got if from Q, but Q is typically understood as sayings of Jesus, not antidotes.  

I think maybe we read into it what we want, but I don't think we can say that it is probably known/remembered.  The evidence just isn't there.  It's at best 50/50 to me.

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12 minutes ago, PaulS said:

Maybe, but I would argue there are few grounds to argue for the Roman story as a 'probable' experience of Jesus.  There seems to be more against Jesus healing a Roman than for it.  There is no other mention of Jesus anywhere in the Gospels of saying or doing a single kind thing for a Roman other than this one story in Matthew, repeated in Luke.  It's not in Mark or John.  Maybe Mathew got if from Q, but Q is typically understood as sayings of Jesus, not antidotes.  

I think maybe we read into it what we want, but I don't think we can say that it is probably known/remembered.  The evidence just isn't there.  It's at best 50/50 to me.

I'm not sure of that one but I would allow that it is not historical.

By probable I am saying that the 'stories' present the Jesus that was known/remembered in the community (and I do understand the passage of time and the literary license of the writers). 

One point if it is in both Matthew and Luke are they then considered two separate sources or, as you indicated, they are taking it from the Q source (not sure if it is commonly accepted that Luke is repeating Matthew). 

I am going off Allison (Biblical scholar) on the idea of probable. I'll try to get a quote tomorrow but have no idea what his take is on the Roman.

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1 hour ago, Elen1107 said:

 

My comment here is to both you guys. I keep running into this. People and even scholars keep saying that Jesus just came for the Jews and that it was Paul and only Paul that taught to non-Jews. I keep thinking that this is not exactly what I remember reading in the Gospels. I've taken sometime to research this a bit. It would take a month or more to go through out all the Gospels and find every incident, but this is what I've found so far:

John 4:1–42 Jesus and the Woman of Samaria: Not only did she become a believer but many of her fellow Samaritans did also. Jesus stayed and taught in Samaria for 2 days.

John 4: 46 Jesus Heals an Official’s Son: This was in Cana in Galilee. It doesn’t specifically say if the “official” was Jewish or not, but it is possible that he may not have been.

 Matthew 15:21 The Faith of a Canaanite Woman: This was in the district of Tyre and Sidon. Jesus heals the woman’s daughter. The same story is also reflected in Mark 7: 24-31

 Luke 7:1-10 Jesus heals a Roman centurion’s servant: This was in Capernaum.

Luke 6: 17 Jesus Teaches and Heals:  He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon. This is just after Luke’s version of Jesus selecting the twelve Apostles and just before Luke’s version of the Sermon on the Mount and his teaching the Beatitudes. These were taught to the afore mentioned multitude of people, including those from Tyre and Sidon. Tyre and Sidon are Canaanite areas and considered to be pagan in the New Testament.

 Mark 5:1-20 Jesus heals a man with a demon called legion and sends them into a herd of pigs. We all know that Jews don’t eat ham, this is not a Jewish territory. It is called “the region of the Gerasenes”. This is a Gentile, culturally Greek area. Jesus tells the man to tell his own people about this, which he does in the Decaplis, (ten cities). The New Testament doesn’t say that all the people became believers, but it does say that they were all “amazed”.

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

Many New Testament manuscripts refer to the "Country of the Gadarenes" or "Gerasenes" rather than the Gergesenes. Both Gerasa and Gadara were cities to the east of the Sea of Galilee and the River Jordan. They were both Gentile cities filled with citizens who were culturally more Greek than Semitic; this would account for the pigs in the biblical account. Gerasa and Gadara are accounted for in historical accounts (by writers such as Pliny the Elder and Josephus) and by archaeological research. Today they are the modern towns of Jerash and Umm Qais.

A third city, Hippos, was similar in character to Gadara and Gerasa, and it may fit the biblical account even better. It was located on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, whereas Gerasa and Gadara were several kilometers south-east of it. Hippos, Gerasa, and Gadara were all counted in the Decapolis, an informal grouping of Greco-Roman cities just south of the ancient city of Caesarea Philippi.

 

It also seems to me that it is not always clear what type of people Jesus is talking to and teaching. Were they all Jews? Were they a mix of different people(s)? I've looked for a good study on this and haven't found one yet. Myself, I don't go with the standard sayings that Jesus taught and only came for the Jews or that this is evident in the Gospels.

 

I said Paul's focus was the Gentiles while Jesus's focus was the Jews. However I also said that Jesus broke boundaries and as you indicated reached out to others (I also allow that some of these stories are not historical but still capture Jesus).

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28 minutes ago, PaulS said:

Maybe, but I would argue there are few grounds to argue for the Roman story as a 'probable' experience of Jesus.  There seems to be more against Jesus healing a Roman than for it.  There is no other mention of Jesus anywhere in the Gospels of saying or doing a single kind thing for a Roman other than this one story in Matthew, repeated in Luke.  It's not in Mark or John.  Maybe Mathew got if from Q, but Q is typically understood as sayings of Jesus, not antidotes.  

I think maybe we read into it what we want, but I don't think we can say that it is probably known/remembered.  The evidence just isn't there.  It's at best 50/50 to me.

What do you think of the story in  Mark 15:39 , where a centurion who witnessed the crucifixion identified Jesus as the Son of God?

I don't see Jesus as directly trying to overthrow the Roman government. He was trying to overcome it, as well as some of the teachings and restrictions of the Jewish leaders, but not by a violent and immediate overthrow. He was trying to teach everyone a new way of being and living together. This ultimately would overcome the hierarchical ways of living and governing. Seems that in life this is still an ongoing process. 

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Edit>

Jesus came to free all people, with a focus on and including the Jews.

Thing is, he taught that the Jews also needed to change. 

He taught about the law, but he also enhanced the Law. He said things like, they law says do not kill, but I say don't even get angry. The law says love your friends and hate your enemies, I say love both your friends and your enemies. The law says do not commit adulatory, but I say don't even look at a person who is not your spouse with lust in your heart. . . . . There are a number of other things like this. He built on the Jewish teaching and took them a step or several steps further.

He also taught that the Kingdom of Heaven is for everyone and all people. He started with the Jews (mostly) but from there it will extend over the entire earth. I don't think he intended a violent and immediate overthrow of the Roman government, he intended the K of Heaven for them too, and that all the world be governed by goodness and fairness and kindness.

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6 minutes ago, Elen1107 said:

I don't see Jesus as directly trying to overthrow the Roman government. He was trying to overcome it, as well as some of the teachings and restrictions of the Jewish leaders, but not by a violent and immediate overthrow. He was trying to teach everyone a new way of being and living together. This ultimately would overcome the hierarchical ways of living and governing. Seems that in life this is still an ongoing process. 

His focus was the Jews even though this did not mean that the Gentiles would not be included in the Kingdom - still he came (first) for the Jews. He was not trying to overthrow 
Rome - with the coming of the Kingdom (done by God) Rome would be overcome.

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12 minutes ago, thormas said:

His focus was the Jews even though this did not mean that the Gentiles would not be included in the Kingdom - still he came (first) for the Jews. He was not trying to overthrow 
Rome - with the coming of the Kingdom (done by God) Rome would be overcome.

I agree

In some ways Rome has been overcome by faith in and the teachings of this one Jewish man named Jesus.

Is this the overcoming or the coming of the Kingdom that Jesus intended? I think we are all still working on it as well as and including them in Rome. 

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28 minutes ago, Elen1107 said:

What do you think of the story in  Mark 15:39 , where a centurion who witnessed the crucifixion identified Jesus as the Son of God?

I tend to use the NRSV and that version doesn't describe the Centurion's words as 'the' Son of God, but rather that he said that Jesus was God's Son or as the footnote explains, 'a' son of God.  So I think the story is saying the centurion thought Jesus was something special in his relationship to God.

28 minutes ago, Elen1107 said:

I don't see Jesus as directly trying to overthrow the Roman government. He was trying to overcome it, as well as some of the teachings and restrictions of the Jewish leaders, but not by a violent and immediate overthrow. He was trying to teach everyone a new way of being and living together. This ultimately would overcome the hierarchical ways of living and governing. Seems that in life this is still an ongoing process. 

----------------------------

Edit>

Jesus came to free all people, with a focus on and including the Jews.

Thing is, he taught that the Jews also needed to change. 

He taught about the law, but he also enhanced the Law. He said things like, they law says do not kill, but I say don't even get angry. The law says love your friends and hate your enemies, I say love both your friends and your enemies. The law says do not commit adulatory, but I say don't even look at a person who is not your spouse with lust in your heart. . . . . There are a number of other things like this. He built on the Jewish teaching and took them a step or several steps further.

He also taught that the Kingdom of Heaven is for everyone and all people. He started with the Jews (mostly) but from there it will extend over the entire earth. I don't think he intended a violent and immediate overthrow of the Roman government, he intended the K of Heaven for them too, and that all the world be governed by goodness and fairness and kindness.

Jesus didn't need to overthrow the Roman government because in his mind, God was going to do that Himself, and very soon.  I don't think he particularly cared for the Romans, but he didn't go out of his way to hate them either.  God was going to take care of the Romans - worrying about them wasn't Jesus' mission in my opinion.

We'll have to agree to disagree that Jesus 'came' to free all people.  I think Jesus was a human just like you and I, who grew up in a certain environment and for various reasons believed what he believed and later became an apocalyptic preacher who was certain the world as he knew it was about to end, and that via the Son of Man, God was going to overthrow the enemies of Israel and restore his Kingdom on earth.  Romans could be a part of it if they capitulated their power and submitted to the God of Israel.

The fact that the 'message' of Jesus became about the Kingdom of Heaven being for everyone and all people, is more a Pauline development than a Jesus one, I believe.

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12 minutes ago, Elen1107 said:

Is this the overcoming or the coming of the Kingdom that Jesus intended? I think we are all still working on it as well as and including them in Rome. 

No, I don't believe it is.  I think it is a distortion or a harmonization of the teachings of Jesus which produce a different message than the one he was preaching.  He was an apocalyptic prophet - he was thinking the Kingdom was about to come any day now.  He wasn't thinking long term.

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50 minutes ago, thormas said:

By probable I am saying that the 'stories' present the Jesus that was known/remembered in the community (and I do understand the passage of time and the literary license of the writers). 

Known/remembered, or made up about Jesus based on storytelling as well.  I wouldn't rule out that it is an incorrect understanding of Jesus even if it is innocently made by the writer at the time.

50 minutes ago, thormas said:

One point if it is in both Matthew and Luke are they then considered two separate sources or, as you indicated, they are taking it from the Q source (not sure if it is commonly accepted that Luke is repeating Matthew). 

Both Mathew and Luke are considered to have used elements of their own community in their writings, in addition to the sources of Mark & Q.

That Mathew was written some 40-80 years after Jesus, and that there is no Roman centurion story in Mark (or even any glimpse of Roman/Jesus interaction outside of this story (even as repeated in Luke, most likely), suggests to me that it is a later story added for whatever purpose, but most likely not an accurate representation of a Jesus event. 

Luke in general is considered to have used Mark, Q and L-source, but I think this is where your point about the understandings of Jesus to the community at the time start to creep in.  I think it is more likely that the Lukan & Matthean understanding was beginning to transform the message of the Kingdom being an imminent event, to a different understanding (because we're some 40 years of from Jesus' death and the Kingdom hasn't yet arrived).

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28 minutes ago, PaulS said:

No, I don't believe it is.  I think it is a distortion or a harmonization of the teachings of Jesus which produce a different message than the one he was preaching.  He was an apocalyptic prophet - he was thinking the Kingdom was about to come any day now.  He wasn't thinking long term.

See this is where I disagree with people, I don't think that Jesus was an 'apocalyptic' prophet.

I see the inbreaking of the Kingdom of God as a change in people's thinking, and priorities, and how they treat one another, and how they regard God. This did start happening then, both during and after Jesus's ministry. If one reads the book of Mormon, it was happening, and in a big way too. Everyone was happy and getting along and sharing everything with everyone and so forth. This lasted for good a while, then everyone started bickering and squabbling and fighting again,... and then the Mormons left and went over to north America. I don't know how much I value the book of Mormon per-say, but I really do wonder what was happening with all the people in those days, during and just after Jesus's ministry and for the next few generations. We get some glimpses from reading the New Testament, but do we really know everything or even all that much?

People talk about  "apocalyptic" as in the "end of the world". Is this "the end of the world" or is it the end of a kind of worldliness and world view? This is an understanding that I was given by some Christians some time ago. That it's not the end of the world, but the end of worldliness and a materialistic point of view. A changing of priorities to a more humane and less self-centered way of looking at things. One that isn't so self-survival orientated. It takes our survival instincts one step further and into Eternity, which if you think of it is the ultimate true survival. But it takes things even further, survival into Eternity means being kind and together and caring, not just survival, survival, survival.

I really don't know how to say what I am trying to say. Thanks for reading anyways  

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5 minutes ago, Elen1107 said:

See this is where I disagree with people, I don't think that Jesus was an 'apocalyptic' prophet.

I see the inbreaking of the Kingdom of God as a change in people's thinking, and priorities, and how they treat one another, and how they regard God. This did start happening then, both during and after Jesus's ministry. If one reads the book of Mormon, it was happening, and in a big way too. Everyone was happy and getting along and sharing everything with everyone and so forth. This lasted for good a while, then everyone started bickering and squabbling and fighting again,... and then the Mormons left and went over to north America. I don't know how much I value the book of Mormon per-say, but I really do wonder what was happening with all the people in those days, during and just after Jesus's ministry and for the next few generations. We get some glimpses from reading the New Testament, but do we really know everything or even all that much?

People talk about  "apocalyptic" as in the "end of the world". Is this "the end of the world" or is it the end of a kind of worldliness and world view? This is an understanding that I was given by some Christians some time ago. That it's not the end of the world, but the end of worldliness and a materialistic point of view. A changing of priorities to a more humane and less self-centered way of looking at things. One that isn't so self-survival orientated. It takes our survival instincts one step further and into Eternity, which if you think of it is the ultimate true survival. But it takes things even further, survival into Eternity means being kind and together and caring, not just survival, survival, survival.

I really don't know how to say what I am trying to say. Thanks for reading anyways  

I understand your disagreement.  I don't think that's where the scholarship takes us on the matter, but I understand that is how many interpret the Jesus story.  And hey, I don't see anything harmful about that and perhaps that view has even contributed positively too many lives.  Maybe it's an even better message than the one Jesus set out with!  

For me personally, I find the scholarship of the likes of Erhman to be compelling evidence that Jesus was an apocalyptic prophet, who understood the 'end of the world' to mean the end of the world as it was currently understood - run by man (i.e. the Romans and other non-Israeli-God governments).  People who worshiped the God of Israel, including those raised from the dead, would live in a new, physical world on earth, ruled by God.  Those that didn't submit to that God's rule would be annihilated.

If you are interested, have a read of Erhman's "Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium".

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20 minutes ago, PaulS said:

I understand your disagreement.  I don't think that's where the scholarship takes us on the matter, but I understand that is how many interpret the Jesus story.  And hey, I don't see anything harmful about that and perhaps that view has even contributed positively too many lives.  Maybe it's an even better message than the one Jesus set out with!  

For me personally, I find the scholarship of the likes of Erhman to be compelling evidence that Jesus was an apocalyptic prophet, who understood the 'end of the world' to mean the end of the world as it was currently understood - run by man (i.e. the Romans and other non-Israeli-God governments).  People who worshiped the God of Israel, including those raised from the dead, would live in a new, physical world on earth, ruled by God.  Those that didn't submit to that God's rule would be annihilated.

If you are interested, have a read of Erhman's "Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium".

Agreed - and scholars like Allison, Fredriksen, Hurtado and others are all in agreement that Jesus was such a Prophet.

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1 hour ago, Elen1107 said:

Is this the overcoming or the coming of the Kingdom that Jesus intended? I think we are all still working on it as well as and including them in Rome. 

I agree with Paul (and Ehrman) on this. However, as this was the understanding of Jesus, it is evident that he was wrong. And with the passage of time, the Christian community's  understanding changed. I think this is fine as Jesus was a man (who was exalted by God) and as a human being he could be wrong. Faced with a different reality (so to speak) that the Kingdom was not establish, that Rome was not overcome, etc., it was the discernment or insight of the community that began to speak of the Kingdom in a different light. 

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23 minutes ago, PaulS said:

For me personally, I find the scholarship of the likes of Erhman to be compelling evidence that Jesus was an apocalyptic prophet, who understood the 'end of the world' to mean the end of the world as it was currently understood - run by man (i.e. the Romans and other non-Israeli-God governments).  People who worshiped the God of Israel, including those raised from the dead, would live in a new, physical world on earth, ruled by God.  Those that didn't submit to that God's rule would be annihilated.

 

This is one of the places where I disagree with Ehrman, and it sticks in my side, and has for sometime. I agree with and love so many of Ehrman's ideas and insights, and then there's this one. This is the one point where I really and completely disagree with Ehrman. (it's just got to happen somewhere 🙂 )

The Jews did have a few things going for them, one of them was the "One God" thing. This might be why God evolved/grew Jesus out of the Jewish nation. They also had a messianic tradition, and some laws that when enhanced and modified (by JC) turn out to be pretty good and some real steps in the right direction. Still, even the Jews needed to know and understand the "God of Israel" better than they did, & a new and better understanding needs to and needed to come to all of us.

Thanks for reading again

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16 minutes ago, thormas said:

Agreed - and scholars like Allison, Fredriksen, Hurtado and others are all in agreement that Jesus was such a Prophet.

Sorry, I think I disagree with all of them and Ehrman too on this point.

So, who am I to disagree with all these notable scholars on this? Well, I'm me and I disagree and I just don't see things that way. I've read this and heard it many times and I still don't agree. I think that the inbreaking of the Kingdom of Heaven is different than many people see it and portray it. What it means and how it happens and how it has been happening is a big subject, that would take pages and pages to cover. One thing about it is that God doesn't just 'do it'. We/people have to participate and make it part of life also. It also may have been happening in pockets of humanity that don't make the news, and people just don't see it.

I don't know everything about it, but I see things as being different. Thanks for reading.

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9 hours ago, Elen1107 said:

This is one of the places where I disagree with Ehrman, and it sticks in my side, and has for sometime. I agree with and love so many of Ehrman's ideas and insights, and then there's this one. This is the one point where I really and completely disagree with Ehrman. (it's just got to happen somewhere 🙂 )

The Jews did have a few things going for them, one of them was the "One God" thing. This might be why God evolved/grew Jesus out of the Jewish nation. They also had a messianic tradition, and some laws that when enhanced and modified (by JC) turn out to be pretty good and some real steps in the right direction. Still, even the Jews needed to know and understand the "God of Israel" better than they did, & a new and better understanding needs to and needed to come to all of us.

The Jews, I believe, including AJ Levine, would disagree that Jesus modified and enhanced their laws and I would agree. Jesus was a Jew through and through who followed (and loved) the Law and visited the Temple and kept the Jewish rituals. In these terms what was unique about Jesus concerning the Law was nicely summed up in the Gospels: the Law is made for man, not man for the Law. Many  have also believed that Jesus was the first to call God Father but this too is false.

It seems the only 'right direction' was not a new, better understanding but the announcement of nearness of the Kingdom and the need to repent and be ready. 

If I remember correctly people like Marcus Borg and John Crosson disagree with Ehrman on Jesus being an Apocalyptic Prophet but it appears that the leading biblical scholars agree with Ehrman (his seems to be the consensus opinion).

 

As a note, I'm not sure what you mean by the idea that God 'grew' Jesus out of the Jewish nation.  

 

 

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9 hours ago, Elen1107 said:

Sorry, I think I disagree with all of them and Ehrman too on this point.

So, who am I to disagree with all these notable scholars on this? Well, I'm me and I disagree and I just don't see things that way. I've read this and heard it many times and I still don't agree. I think that the inbreaking of the Kingdom of Heaven is different than many people see it and portray it. What it means and how it happens and how it has been happening is a big subject, that would take pages and pages to cover. One thing about it is that God doesn't just 'do it'. We/people have to participate and make it part of life also. It also may have been happening in pockets of humanity that don't make the news, and people just don't see it.

I don't know everything about it, but I see things as being different. Thanks for reading.

I believe we're talking about two different 'moments:'  the meaning of the inbreaking of the Kingdom for Jesus and the meaning of the Kingdom in light of the reality that it was not established in the lifetime of his followers (as promised). 

If I follow you, I too think that "the in-breaking of the Kingdom is different" now than what Ehrman and others say it was for Jesus - i.e. it is different than what Jesus thought and expected. Which is ok because we are talking about different discernments of the Divine (but I still hold that the present understanding, thought different, is built on Jesus).

It seems in the understanding of Jesus, God was the one who was expected to do it. Repenting was not our participation in bringing the Kingdom, it was our getting ready for that Kingdom which God would establish. It was all about God for Jesus. As said, that didn't happen and with a changing understanding of the Kingdom there was also an evolving understanding that we do have to participate and I would go as far as saying that without our participation the Kingdom will not be established.

And that would be an interesting discussion.

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12 hours ago, thormas said:

My comment here is to both you guys. I keep running into this. People and even scholars keep saying that Jesus just came for the Jews and that it was Paul and only Paul that taught to non-Jews. I keep thinking that this is not exactly what I remember reading in the Gospels. I've taken sometime to research this a bit. It would take a month or more to go through out all the Gospels and find every incident, but this is what I've found so far:

Paula Fredriksen (in Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews) states that the "during Jesus' lifetime, Gentiles scarcely figured at all in his mission." Again this does not mean that Jesus did not cross traditional boundaries and 'reach out' to non-Jews - however he was, as those prophets before him, a Prophet for his people, the people of God, the Jews and his message to them was urgent: the Kingdom was coming.

She also writes that "a strand within traditional Jewish apocalyptic though anticipated the Gentiles turning to the God of Israel as one of the events at the End of Days."  Isiah 2:2-4:  "....will draw all the nations to it (God's house), to the worship of the God of Jacob." And it was Paul, anticipating the coming of Christ and the full establishment of the Kingdom who (with others) took on the mission of spreading the good news to the Gentiles - this was his focus.

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12 hours ago, PaulS said:

Known/remembered, or made up about Jesus based on storytelling as well.  I wouldn't rule out that it is an incorrect understanding of Jesus even if it is innocently made by the writer at the time.

Both Mathew and Luke are considered to have used elements of their own community in their writings, in addition to the sources of Mark & Q.

That Mathew was written some 40-80 years after Jesus, and that there is no Roman centurion story in Mark (or even any glimpse of Roman/Jesus interaction outside of this story (even as repeated in Luke, most likely), suggests to me that it is a later story added for whatever purpose, but most likely not an accurate representation of a Jesus event. 

Luke in general is considered to have used Mark, Q and L-source, but I think this is where your point about the understandings of Jesus to the community at the time start to creep in.  I think it is more likely that the Lukan & Matthean understanding was beginning to transform the message of the Kingdom being an imminent event, to a different understanding (because we're some 40 years of from Jesus' death and the Kingdom hasn't yet arrived).

This to me is a bit of a minor point but what would be interesting to determine is if Luke and Matthew get this from Q or from their separate traditions of L and M? And if the latter do we then have 2 separate sources? I do allow that it is a later addition but my question is does it 'reveal' something that Jesus would have done (or said) (a criterion used by Dale Allison).

 

Allison, one of the top biblical scholars, in his book 'The Historical Christ and the Theological Jesus' pretty much (as I understand him) gives up on whether we can know definitively what Jesus did or said, however he speaks of "making inferences from patterns that characterize the sources (the Gospels) as a whole." He continues " the Synoptics are not primarily records of what Jesus actually said and did but collections of impressions. They recount, or rather often recount, the sorts of things that he said and did, or that he could have said and done.'

For example, it is not about the historicity of particular miracles: Allison writes, that Jesus "was reputed to be and thought himself to be a successful exorcist, healer, and wonder-worker and that some who knew him believed that they had witnessed truly extraordinary events." So too, as I understand it (and am further exploring it), it is not about the historicity of the story of the centurion but that this crossing boundaries (the Roman, the Samaritan, the Canaanitethe Official, etc.) was the sort of thing that Jesus could/would have done (even with the acknowledgement that his focus was the Jews). 

Both the miracle stories and the stories of interactions with non-Jews are impressions of Jesus that characterize the Gospels.

 

 

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Wanted to recommend Allison's book above and the bonus is that it is only a bit over 100 pages so it is not a major commitment of time.

Another good read is Paula Fredriksen's book, also above, but that one is longer.

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The following is copied from one of my September 2019 post under NT Reliability, part of the Debate and Dialogue Section (it offers some more detail on Allison and has a link to his book which is pretty thorough)

________________________.

So, in addition to Ehrman's list (above) of the gist of Jesus, I also mentioned that Dale Allison is concerned with broad patterns rather than definitive assertions that this or that saying or this or that story (including miracle stories) actually were said by Jesus or actually happened as recorded. 

To that end, Allison's broad patterns (the gist or adding to the gist of Jesus?) follow:

  • "Jesus was an exorcist who interpreted his ministry in terms of the downfall of Satan; 
  • he thought highly of the Baptist; 
  • he spoke repeatedly of God as Father; 
  • he composed parables; 
  • he came into conflict with religious authorities; and, 
  • he saw himself as having a starring role in the eschatological drama that was unfolding"  

This material, for those who might be interested is found in his book (mentioned above) and on this site: https://www.thecontemplativelife.org/blog/historical-jesus-dale-allison-jesus-apocalyptic-prophet  I have put it in a list format to match the above and Ehrman's list. Allison continues his general patterns:

  • "Jesus had firm eschatological expectations, to which he gave frequent expression; 
  • he envisaged the advent, after suffering and persecution, of a great judgment, and after that a supernatural utopia, the kingdom of God;
  • he thought that the night was far gone, the day at hand.
  • Jesus probably believed himself to be not just an eschatological prophet but the personal locus of the end-time scenario, the central figure of the last judgment"

Regarding miracles, Allison lists the many miracles from the gospels and, again goes to general patterns, concluding (again the source is his book, 'The Historical Christ and the Theological Jesus'):  

  • "Jesus was reputed to be and thought himself to be a successful exorcist, healer and wonder-worker
  • some who knew him believed that they had witnessed truly extraordinary event"

 There is an interesting section from Allison on miracles which is worth a quick read - if interested.

Allison's POV is nicely summed up:

"I do not contend, because I do not believe, that all this (NT gospel) material comes from Jesus, directly or indirectly. Nor do I insist that any of it is word-perfect memory. To repeat what I have said before: the Synoptics are not primarily records of what Jesus actually said and did but collections of impressions. They recount, or rather often recount, the sorts of things that he said and did, or that he could have said and done."

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Wanted to add that any 'patterns' we might have (listed by Elen) of Jesus reaching out beyond his boundaries to non-Jews seems to be a piece with his call to love one's enemies.

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13 hours ago, thormas said:

The Jews, I believe, including AJ Levine, would disagree that Jesus modified and enhanced their laws and I would agree. Jesus was a Jew through and through who followed (and loved) the Law and visited the Temple and kept the Jewish rituals. In these terms what was unique about Jesus concerning the Law was nicely summed up in the Gospels: the Law is made for man, not man for the Law. Many  have also believed that Jesus was the first to call God Father but this too is false.

It seems the only 'right direction' was not a new, better understanding but the announcement of nearness of the Kingdom and the need to repent and be ready. 

If I remember correctly people like Marcus Borg and John Crosson disagree with Ehrman on Jesus being an Apocalyptic Prophet but it appears that the leading biblical scholars agree with Ehrman (his seems to be the consensus opinion).

 

As a note, I'm not sure what you mean by the idea that God 'grew' Jesus out of the Jewish nation.  

 

 

Ehrman did a talk on how Jesus did not negate or reject the law but enhanced it. He took many of the principals of the law and took them a step or a few steps further. I listed a few examples on another comment I made, I got these ideas and this understanding from Ehrman. Essentially Ehrman was saying, he took the law and made it better.

I like both Marcus Borg and John Crosson. It's good to know that there are some folks that I'm in agreement with. The subject as to whether Jesus was apocalyptic or not is probably better left for another thread.

I probably should have used a better word than "grew". I believe that somehow God evolved Jesus through and out of the Jewish nation. I also believe that God created him and conceived  of him from the beginning as it says in John 1. Exactly how this all works is another thing altogether, and I certainly don't know what or everything about it.

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