Theologians?

any still on the board?

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Hey guys just poppin’ in to see if there are any theologians on the board.
I don’t really care if one considers themselves a theologian or not, but if they have information for my query’s is what I seek.

I remember Tom, and Bill a ways beck demonstrating much knowledge in this field (Bill even writing a book on related topic) so I guess my questions are for them, but welcome any and all responses.

A brief epilogue:

My current studies are leaning towards a search for a Coptic Matthew preferably dating the late 4th or early 5th century.
For reasons which include the rumors of a Hebrew Matthew (I am aware of the unlikelihood of Shem Tov’s being authentic but a medieval creation) but there are many many references to a Hebrew Matthew by the writers of Jewish Antiquity (I will not list them here, this being a “brief” OP)
Now without getting into the possibility and probability of Shem Tov’s claim to have used a copy (or fragments thereof) of a Hebrew Matthew at his time I will say this, if he did use one a Coptic Matthew may be the best source to cross examine it by. (knowing the Aramaic text most likely never existed, and since the supposed evidence C. C. Torrey and others of his ilk tried to build was largely demolished half a century ago)
IMHO Shem Tov’s Hebrew Matthew is as much of an enigma as the Gospel of John, but it is interesting to investigate none the less.
As it has been pointed out by Tom outside of the synopsis many things (eg lines the Eucharist) are possibly Matthean inserts. And in trying to reconstruct gospels outside of Pauline/Hellenistic influences a Hebrew Matthew(or Coptic derivative would prove valuable) at least to me, much in the way Coptic text were used to piece together Thomas.
I understand that Coptic is a later language and its grammar has nothing to do with Greek or Syriac (except insofar as it is a Hamito-Semitic language so I would also accept an online Syriac version if available.

My theory (or even inquiry) is this:

1.If Shem Tov did have a Hebrew Matthew he used that was later lost it could be either proven or dis-proved by comparing other text.
2. If there are other text (even fragments) that were held outside of Pauline/Hellenistic influences that would be valuable and useful to compare to the Greek Matthew and possibly find more or less synoptics.
3. If a Hebrew Matthew did exist, up until the 4th or 5th century, a Coptic or other copy of it may have survived the burnings and purging instituted by the Roman/Greco religious and political powers following the councils that deemed other gospels heresy.
3.a. It would seem Coptic being a relatively new language of those centuries would be a good way to encrypt or hide a copy of the Hebrew Matthew (if it did exist) from those who sought to destroy other text.
3.b. If a Hebrew Text did exist in Egypt it would have been outside of the influences found in the other text.

I have found a few fragments of a Coptic Matthew, two at Matthew 18:20-27 Duke University which they date as early as 640 AD; and another fragment in a Russian Library called Manuscript 085.(another fragment)

With my limited knowledge of Coptic (learned from the translation of Coptic Thomas) I am attempting to translate these, but am still searching for other fragments hopefully of earlier dates (preferable late 4th early 5th century) if they are online, or if there are any books or collections people could recommend in this area.
I could use an online version of Shem Tov’s Hebrew if anyone knows of one, the one I’m currently using is at shemtov.org and is not complete.

I remember Bill, Tom and Bubba’s many conversation here in times past on similar topics and am sure some people here have been down similar roads before me, so I though this would be as good a place as any to seek what I am looking for.

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

sorry guys I was trying to edit a typo in the other version and it would not let me edit my post.
This post has the correct word used so I suppose we can use it for the discussion :)

I will be back alter on today or possibly tomorrow to see if anyone responded.

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

Well, you don’t want a theologian, if you really are interested in the early history of the text - theology starts with a set of dogmatic assumptions and then tries to show how the historical evidence fits in and supports those assumptions. You want real scholarship by real religious studies people - historians, paleographers, papyrologists, that sort of thing.

Why not start with some of the standard textbooks on the issues involved in establishing the text? Bruce Metzger’s several books on the subjects are necessary starting points.

Why the focus on Matthew? Seems like the wrong way to go about things, if you are interested in the actual, historical Jesus. If not, well, then, it doesn’t really matter where you start. :D

BTW, here is a bibliography that lists all of the published texts of the Greek NT texts:

http://www.amazon.com/Bibliog…&sr=1-1

Jerm, try this:

http://www.amazon.com/Text-Ne…sr=11-1


(TomS @ Jul. 29 2007,18:57)
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Why not start with some of the standard textbooks on the issues involved in establishing the text? Bruce Metzger's several books on the subjects are necessary starting points.



BTW, here is a bibliography that lists all of the published texts of the Greek NT texts:

http://www.amazon.com/Bibliog....&sr=1-1

Thanks for the link and info.

Well, you don't want a theologian, if you really are interested in the early history of the text - theology starts with a set of dogmatic assumptions and then tries to show how the historical evidence fits in and supports those assumptions. You want real scholarship by real religious studies people - historians, paleographers, papyrologists, that sort of thing.
GOOD POINT! lol
This is what I am trying to get away from "dogmatic assumptions". :)
historians....hmmm we all know history is written by the conquerers...not sure I would take the word of innocent blood spiller's over that of the supposed "heretics".

Why the focus on Matthew? Seems like the wrong way to go about things, if you are interested in the actual, historical Jesus. If not, well, then, it doesn't really matter where you start. :D
Well it is the only text I am aware of (in the cannon Gospels) that ever had legend of having a Hebrew version.
The point being, Yeshua spoke Aramaic and Hebrew (from what I know of him).
And Greek thought and language does not translate Hebrew well, IMHO.
That on top of the historic records that refer to a Hebrew text(I did not list them).....therefore another translation of that text may have existed...possibly Coptic.
The whole idea is trying to find a version that bypasses the Greek and that was held outside of that influence, much like Thomas was.

Why Matthew?

1. it is the only text reported to have been written in Hebrew. (by quiet a few writer if Jewish Antiquity)
2. according to the accounts Matthew was an appointed Apostle of the rabbi Yeshua during his living ministry.
(Mark being the illegitimate red headed step child of Peter, is a second hand source at best) and Luke being a Gentile with little understanding of Hebrew scripture, let alone writing Hebrew himself.
John, well we all know his gospel is an enigma, and the latest of the four with the most Hellenistic embellishment.

thanks for the response Tom.

keep shinin'

jerm :cool:

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if you are interested in the actual, historical Jesus.

Well you should know me by now that I am, I know the question was rhetorical.

I must say I am sadly disappointed by mainstream Christians biblical academics.
Everything from the exaggeration and purposeful mis-dating of the Septuagint to the various plagarized Pauline letters…

They turn a blind eye to all logic and information, makes for poor academics IMHO.

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

My apologies,
The last post should have read “mainstream Christian scholarship” not academics… it’s the scholarship I have issue with not the academics themselves.

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

Ah, Jeremy, at least we agree that John is mostly unhelpful for the actual historical Jesus.

But…you do know that Matthew was not the author of Matthew, right? Nor was Mark the author of Mark…etc…and Mark is earlier than Matthew…adn Q is earlier than both…


(TomS @ Jul. 29 2007,21:15)
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Ah,

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Ah, Jeremy, at least we agree that John is mostly unhelpful for the actual historical Jesus.

YEP!
Great for establishing a later Christology comparison after the destruction of the Temple but definitely apes when it comes to anything concrete that the rabbi Yeshua may have said.
Now if one was interested in the “mythical” Jesus, John and Paul is as far as one would need to travel.
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But…you do know that Matthew was not the author of Matthew, right? Nor was Mark the author of Mark…etc…and Mark is earlier than Matthew…adn Q is earlier than both…


Is that why they call them “oral traditions” ?? tee hee

All Q proves as far as I can tell is a common source.
That source may have been written, or spoken (hence the “oral tradition”.
Hebrews were quiet comfortable with passing down verbal traditions and stories as all the Midrashs of the Torah survived for thousands of years that way, before being written down.
That may be the reason Q was never found, perhaps it was never written, but it may have been preserved and kept meticulously in the same manner the other “oral traditions” of the Torah were.
In fact I understand each rabbi would add some of their own beliefs to the stories (at least by the evidence of the ones we do have written down) even though they were claimed to have been passed down from Aaron to the next priest on down the line.
Often other rabbi’s would catch these changes in the oral traditions and correct them to the standard the others remembered.

I would agree Mark most likely did not write his Gospel, that is attributed to him, being a step child of a poor uneducated fisherman from Galilee, most likely uneducated himself, but he may have over heard the many stories of Peter (apparently Peter had the gift for gab, and speeches) so in effect his gospel may be sort of a hand me down Peterian Gospel.
Anywho, it is called “the gospel according to Mark”, not “the Gospel written by Mark”.

Matthew on the other hand, (if one is to believe it is the Apostle Matthew spoken of in the other gospels) was educated being a tax collector most likely knew how to write at least one language.
Of course, if the Matthew many if the writers of Jewish Antiquity referring to as “collecting the oracles of the Hebrew version” was another Matthew who was influential in the early Christians movement, then that point is mute as well.
I am aware that this text became the gospel according to St. Matthew in church traditions though…

Luke on the other hand is useless as far as I am concerned at least in the context of this study.
And I am unfamiliar with the argument that he did not write the gospel according to him. (or Acts for that matter)
The main reasons I am not interested in him for this particular inquiry is that he was most likely a Gentile, he was not an appointed Apostle of the rabbi Yeshua, and he seemed to have been a personal press secretary and buddy of Paul, which no doubt had it’s influence on his tradition if in in fact did come from him.

That is why I am focusing on the Hebrew Matthew (or a close derivative) for now, always keeping in mind the synopsis, and keeping my eyes peeled for anything of use that passes my way.

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

Jeremy, tell me your take on this video by Max Blumenthal:

Cristians United for Israel

I’m sure Jerm has a response, but until then…

First thought, the woman on the left of the picture has a damn fine rack!

But I think the title of the article speaks for itself - Christians Untied for Israel. Bondage has long been neglected by too many religions, so it’s nice to see some Christians finally coming out of the closet about it.

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In the end, all the non-believers - Jews, Muslims, Hindus, mainline Christians, etc. - must convert or suffer the torture of eternal damnation.


Personally, it’s those worshippers of Etc that really piss me off. It’s not so much their foul dietary habits (although that’s part of it), it’s mainly those stupids hats with the chickens on top that really annoys me.

So all in all, I think I’ll be supporting those untied Christians in their efforts to spread peace and love (and bombs) throughout the world. :)

(TomS @ Jul. 30 2007,11:30)
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Jeremy, tell me your take on this video by Max Blumenthal:

Cristians United for Israel

All I can say is "YIKES!"

keep shinin'

jerm :cool:

I especially liked the woman dancing at the end, if that was not a mirror image of King David in the streets of Jerusalem I don’t know what is! lol :)

keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

Good. you give me hope for Christianity, Jeremy.

Downright scarey!


(TomS @ Jul. 31 2007,07:19)
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Good. you give me hope for Christianity, Jeremy.

Well I have learned much since the last time we have talked on this topic…

The trinity,divinity, rapture, purgatory, “grace” “faith” and “belief” (in the English context) all concepts of men.

I dunno something Dave said a while back just stuck, and I began searching…I see it as a journey, not a destination.

I hold onto what can be confirmed The OT, the prophets, and the synopsis of Yeshua and let go of the rest.

There is something there…it’s not a free ride or license to kill, but a owners manual and expansive blueprint for this thing we call flesh/body.

I think anyone who has the true desire to know and do what is right, will be led to the well of water and drink.

I am not “Christianity” neither do I want any part of it, Pandora’s box has already been opened and there is no closing it at this point.
“Christianity” was built by liars and murderers and has been perpetuated by ignorance and feudal systems for centuries, heck millenniums and I cannot, and will not, turn a blind eye to the facts of the matter.

There was a wise man who according to some accounts once said:

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.




keep shinin’

jerm :cool:

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Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.


Ok, let’s take that, for now, as an operating assumption.

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I hold onto what can be confirmed The OT, the prophets, and the synopsis of Yeshua and let go of the rest.


You have confirmed that Jerm? I’m not talking about confirmation about what is written, but rather, confirmation that that is true?

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There is something there…it’s not a free ride or license to kill, but a owners manual and expansive blueprint for this thing we call flesh/body.


Well, there may well be something there, but I’m not really sure how you can be sure it’s an ‘owner’s manual’?

Anyway, going back to the gate, be it strait and narrow or strait and wide…

Are you convinced you have the right gate?

What if there is no gate? What if there is no wall? What if both are creations of our rationalising habits of pattern making?

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I see it as a journey, not a destination.


Well, I can’t argue there! :D And I still stand as the lonely hitchhiker waiting for Cameron Diaz to drive past in her Ferrari. :)

(jeremysdemo @ Jul. 31 2007,23:47)
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The trinity,divinity, ..., purgatory, ... ...

I tend to think more along the lines of mahogany, ebony etc :O

Jeremy, a religion, almost ANY religion boils down to faith. Despite all your studying and trying to learn, you are still taking someone else’s word that what you read or studied is true. (Unless you are actually over 2000 years old and have a better memory than I do. :) )

You either believe or you don’t IMO. Cut and dried, simple as that. Faith or no faith.

D

PS Mahogany… yummm… Ebony…yumm… Maple…! I’m gonna eat a few trees for lunch and crap a Les Paul!