Caesar, Christ, Crucifixion

Bust of Julius Caesar from the British Museum

Bust of Julius Caesar from the British Museum (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m finalizing my AAR regional paper and it is going as well as any paper has previously. I found it. Maybe you don’t know what I mean. There is this moment in writing some projects where everything just seems to click. I found that moment the other day.

In 2 Co 13.4, Christ is said to have died in weakness upon the Cross. Some commentators suggest this means in human flesh. I disagree. Rather, like C.K. Barrett, I see it as a choice to surrender:

It was of his grace, of his primary characteristic, that he became poor (8:9), and the weakness shown in his crucifixion, being a mark of his grace, is not an unfortunate lapse from strength but one aspect of the action God intended in his Son. Historically, he preferred crucifixion to the exercise of some kinds of power1

I note Caesar‘s remark about the crucifixion his men would suffer if he lost the battle.

“Today we’ll earn the wages or the penalty of this war. Imagine the chains, the crucifixions of Caesar’s men, my head stuck on the Rostrum, my body cast aside,[2. Lucan, Civil War 7.359-58]

Ultimately, I believe it is better to picture the crucifixion as “suicide by cop” if that cop was, say, God abandoning Israel to Rome, and further if that “cop” was the need to do something to get God to act.

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  1. C. K. Barrett, The Second Epistle to the Corinthians (Black’s New Testament Commentary; London: Continuum, 1973), 336.

Review for “Mimetic Criticism and the Gospel of Mark: An Introduction and Commentary”

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Thanks to Geoffrey for this review:

In the 19th century, the great British statesman William Gladstone wrote a long, detailed, and wrong work on the similarities between Homer (“good old Homer”) and the Bible. This tradition has kept up in to the 21st century, with a recent scholar making a similar argument, using different justifications. In “Mimetic Criticism and the Gospel of Mark: An Introduction and Commentary”, Joel Watts makes that case that, in fact, it was another author from antiquity that, at the very least, sat in the back of the Gospel author’s head: Lucan, the satiric poet who was forced to suicide by Nero. To make his case, Watts delves deep in to the historical background of the text of the Gospel, its roots in the Septuagint, and describes in detail how mimesis was understood at the time the original audience was being addressed. He then turns and shows how Lucan, who turned Virgil’s triumphant Caesarian propaganda on its head in his polemic against his childhood friend, the Emperor Nero. He also relies heavily on the theory that, while it is true texts emerge from communities, they can also create communities. The power of Mark’s Gospel, for Watts, lies precisely in those things that have made it, in words he borrows from classical and contemporary critics, an embarrassment.

I cannot say I accept his argument whole-heartedly. Replacing one antiquated author with another, even with a stirring defense, still leaves many questions unanswered, not to mention unanswerable. Leaving aside this not unimportant issue, Watts nevertheless demonstrates the subversive, even revolutionary quality of the text. In so doing, he shows us that, even at its most controversial – embarrassing? – Mark’s Gospel nevertheless offers contemporary readers a vision of Jesus wholly at odds both with his contemporaries and their expectations as well as us and our own expectations. Inviting readers to consider an original audience understanding many asides and references that have long since been lost, Watts breathes life in to those first Gospel communities, still broken-hearted at the destruction of the Temple and the significance of that action (as well as the declaration of Vespasian as Messiah for the Jews) for them.and their devotion to the Jesus they have come to revere. On this last, Watts’s inclusion of a discussion of various “Jesus’s” and what that means both for original readers as well modern readers, particularly of Chapter 13, changed this reader’s whole perspective on this part of the Gospel.

Best of all, Watts has done a great service by showing readers how even this Gospel, too often derided for its poor Greek, its Aramaisms, its incomplete sentences, and lack both of a beginning and ending, is nevertheless a text with many layers. Some of those layers cannot be understood, as Watts whole project insists, unless we are willing to enter the mind and heart of the original audience, learn what they took for granted, and hear with faith the promise that, despite defeat and dispersion, God was nevertheless with them, just as Jesus told them.

via Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Mimetic Criticism and the Gospel of Mark: An Introduction and Commentary.

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#SBLAAR, Accepted: “There and Back Again, A Jesus Tale: The Poetics of Apologetic Reversal”

This paper examines the presentation of Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem (Mark 11.1–17) via mimesis. Rather than rewriting previous works or seeking to capitalize upon the positive image of a previous generation’s prophet as Mark has before, I propose our author is exploiting an apology of reversal in this pericope. This repetition, aptly named the “mimesis of the other,” is a repetition to dominate (Nesteruk 2013). The author of the Gospel of Mark presents Jesus in such a way as to refute a particular image by first imitating that image and then altering the aftermath. We discover this image through intertextuality; we discover the repudiation through other devices concealed in the text. I propose a reading of Mark 11.1–17 where the author uses existing literary material of recent historical actions to present Jesus as one who has entered Jerusalem quite contrary to the manner of the Egyptian (BJ 2.263–65) and Simon bar Giora (BJ 4.570-84). I will use the “mimesis of the other” to propose a reason why Mark may have used at least two scenes from Josephus’s Bellum Judaicum (2.263–65; 4.570-84) to judiciously craft this anticlimactic scene. By using “mimesis of the other,” our author is establishing Jesus against familiar motifs of rebels and dictators who attempted to wrest Jerusalem away from the Romans. This paper will presume a post­–70 Sitz im Leben as well as knowledge of Josephus’s earliest works by the author of GMark. I will work, based on these presuppositions, towards establishing a literary relationship between these two texts transcending intertextuality to one utilizing structure, geography, and character movement so that we clearly see not just mimicking, but an intentional reversal serving as an apologetic device.

first review for “Praying in God’s Theater”

For the most part, you can find other articles on this book here.

Praying in God's Theater

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Geoffrey Kruse-Safford writes,

Joel Watts invites readers in to the world of Revelation in exciting, intriguing, and enlightening ways. Cutting the cord tying St. John’s vision both to history and “prophecy”, Watts reads Revelation with commentators crossing the vast spectrum of Christian history and confession, asking only that we indulge the possibility that there are layers upon layers of possibility within this much-contested text. Placing the text firmly within the liturgical and eucharistic practices of the early church, Watts makes each scene come alive as an opportunity to see what St. John saw – that our worship and song and praise, understood in the fullness of eschatological possibility, takes place both here and now and in the Heavenly Temple before the Throne of the Triune God. The prayers offered up draw on the full range of Biblical texts as Watts makes Heilsgeschichte come alive through the words of Scripture. This is more than an offering of a new way to read, and pray, the Scriptures, something for which I’ve long sought. This is a deeply spiritual, deeply faithful rendering of a text, letting the Spirit bring to life the dead words on the page in a new way.

Among the constant conversation partners most present is St. John of the Cross, whose vision of the “Dark Night Of The Soul” brings out the ways Revelation can guide the weary pilgrim through the hazards of a deepening faith to the table that is set before us and for us. In this way Watts also sheds light on that misunderstood word, “mysticism”. Nothing airy or dreamy here, playing the words of Scripture off the words of the beloved Spanish poet, Watts shows that the mystics presented the full struggle for salvation and perfection of all creation in the drama of their own lives. The proper resting place, both in Scripture, and through Scripture for the great teachers of the church, for that struggle is worship, specifically the Eucharist, at which and through which the drama of salvation is not only reenacted but offered to all, both here and above. Reading and praying Revelation in this way offers readers the possibility of seeing their lives as an important part of the whole story of Redemption. This drama – personal, communal, cosmological – is united in and through the body and blood of the crucified and risen Son of God.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is more than an excellent study of Revelation. The prayers, especially the responsive ones, would fit in any long liturgical study of Revelation, or equally well in small group settings. This is a book not so much to be read as to be thankful for; someone has made the vision of St. John come alive in ways that leave behind both the popular silliness too long associated with the book as well as reducing the text to its final, victorious vision.

This review is greatly appreciated. Geoffrey has updated this view on his blog.

Endorsements for “Praying in God’s Theater” (@wipfandstock)

Praying in God's Theater

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“Revelation is, at its heart, about mysteries. Such things are best approached in prayer, in an attitude of worship, and in conversation with wiser souls. Joel L. Watts’s approach does exactly that, weaving a mix of liturgical prayer and scholarly reflections together with insights from commentators both ancient and modern.”
—Gary Neal Hansen, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary, Dubuque, IA

“Watts has written a beautiful, creative, and informative book on John’s Apocalypse. Watts’ attention to the full landscape of the book of Revelation, coupled with his attention to multiple interpretive traditions, is commendable. This book will serve faith communities and university students alike. It deserves careful attention.”
—John Oliff, Department of Christian Studies, Eastern University, St. Davids, PA

Joel Watts’ Praying in God’s Theatre brings a brilliant and fresh view- point to the Book of Revelation. For those of you laymen or women, like myself, who have struggled with the meaning and nature of Revelation, no matter how many bible studies, Praying in God’s Theatre brings a spirited context to the Bible’s most controversial and enigmatic book.

A few years ago I filmed a documentary on contemplative prayer, Be Still, with Beth Moore, Mac Lucado, Peter Kreeft, Dallas Willard, and Robert Foster; but that documentary pales in compari- son with the soulful observation that Mr. Watts is able to imbue in this remarkable literary and academic work regarding the contem- plation of Revelation.

Mr. Watts returns to the grand tradition of “Lectio Divina” in which scripture and reader become one. What did the Yale Humanities Professor, Harold Bloom say? “You don’t read Shakespeare, Shakespeare reads you.” What Mr. Watts is suggesting in his smart but easy-to-read book is that a prayerful spirited heart is truly neces- sary so that Revelation can, in a way, read you. In so doing, this process brings new levels of vision in one’s own faith journey through the Holy Spirit.

In his remarkable book, Mr. Watts creates a practical pathway with a collection of wonderful prayers that will help the reader gain further insight into the mystic realms of the Revelation text. For so long, Fundamentalists have kidnapped the era in which we live. They have roped it around the end-of-days gloom seemingly inherent in Revelation. That interpretation only drives away the possibility of a truly meaningful life through Christ. Mr. Watts takes us to another place. “This is not just a chapter (Revelation) about endings, it is about new beginnings,” he writes. In his thoughtful and powerful way, he allows us to unlock “the most important message” of the “Fifth Gospel.”

What I admire about Watt’s writing is that it is inclusive. It brings “the body of Christ” together. His intelligent and compas- sionate analysis hopefully strikes up a new kind of revival in which all brothers and sisters in Christ can partake. As a body, we have become so closed to discourse especially in the realms of science. Mr. Watts’ view point on scripture, opens us up, frees us, allows us to engage with others in, healthy, life-affirming ways.

Praying in God’s Theatre is for anyone who has struggled with Revelation. It opens your eyes and heart and mind to a fresh start. It may indeed alter your worldview in a way that will be surprising, loving, and Christ-like.
—David Paul Kirkpatrick Author, and former President of Paramount Pictures, and Walt Disney Pictures

I found this book to be a very spiritually Christian book. The hand
of God can be seen throughout the prayers
—Doug Iverson Baptist, Ripon, Wisconsin

Joel L. Watts has incorporated a great blend of the teachings and liturgy from the Old Testament, its Psalms and ancient churches of the New Testament. His inclusion of the early church fathers, church councils and some of the greatest theologians throughout history Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant bridges it all together. This book is a great tool for understanding prayers, the liturgy, and the union of the Sacraments with Christ. It provides an in-depth perspective into Revelation and the Liturgy
—Most Reverend Kevin B. Twohig East Coast Diocese of the Advent Independent Catholic Church

Joel L. Watts’ innovative reading of the Book of Revelation continues his tradition of opening Scripture from a new and fresh perspective and offering readers a unique take on texts. Praying Scripture—even if that Scripture is the Apocalypse—is a spiritual exercise many of the Ancients endorsed. Joel’s attempt to revive the practice is commendable.
—Jim West Professor of Biblical Studies, Quartz Hill School of Theology

In this work on the book of Revelation, Joel L. Watts has did an excellent job of utilizing the best of contemporary exegesis as well as the words of the Church Mothers and Fathers. This will not doubt be an important resource for worship settings as local churches continue to embody the traditions of the early Church passed down to us.
—Rod Thomas, ThM (Master of Theology), and Baptist writer and political commentator at PoliticalJesus.com

With the entirety of the Christian tradition acting as his palate, Watts opens up one of the Bible’s most mystifying and polarizing books. Rather than let John’s Apocalypse sit in stasis, Watts uses the disci- pline of prayer to open it to those all over the Christian spectrum. This book is proof that—liberal or conservative—Revelation doesn’t have to scare us.

—Rev. Chris Tiedeman United Methodist Church (Indiana)

In this engaging and practical approach to the book of Revelation, Watts provides us with a wealth of information, sources, traditions, and even theologies that it is difficult to imagine how he was able to interweave them so seamlessly. In fact, for those that are interested in ecumenism, religious synthesis and even in syncretism, I cannot recommend this book enough as an example of how different Christian traditions can be joined together successfully for means of Christian devotion.

Personally, for a person that was brought up in a theology simi- lar to the author’s, this volume is such a breath of fresh air, and, accessible scholarship, that I cannot emphasize enough how helpful it has been to understand and enjoy the book of Revelation anew.

In a very fortuitous way, I was recently asked to write a course on the book of Revelation for a local parish church. You can be assured that this book will be in my required reading list.

—Daniel E. Ortiz MA MTh BTh Ordained Pastor in the UCE (Bolivian Congregationalist Church) Denomination. (Presently an Anglican communicant and, soon to be, Doctoral candidate in Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies in The University of Birmingham, U.K.)

I once stood in the cave on the Island of Patmos where the ancient traditions of the church believed that the Apostle John received a revelation from God concerning the final triumph of the “Lamb that was slain.” Centuries of scholarship have revised our understanding of the origins of the Book of Revelation, but its promises and images continue to fascinate the contemporary disciples of Jesus.

In this fascinating book, Joel Watts has transformed those promises and images into prayers, and has shifted the focus of our fascination with this book from our theology to our spirituality. As I moved through the pages of this book, I found nourishment for my spiritual life as I prayed the ancient vision of the triumphant and reigning Christ and I trust that it will be the same for each reader. This book is creative, profound, and spiritually provocative.
—William Boyd Grove Bishop, Retired, United Methodist Church

It’s finally ready to order: “Praying in God’s Theater, Meditations Upon the Book of Revelation” @wipfandstock

Praying in God's Theater

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Much like the book of Revelation, Joel L. Watts’ Praying in God’s Theater aims to pull readers into a deeper spirituality to confront the daily struggles of Christian life. Drawing from the rich well of Christian mystics and theologians from across the ecumenical experience, Watts uses the Apocalypse to build a series of prayers and devotions aimed at increasing what he identifies as the contemplative unity and the certain unity between the individual and Christ. He urges a radical vision of the prayer and the sacrament of the Eucharist.

Each chapter of Revelation is considered, explored, and finally used as a basis to draft prayers. Added to this is an application commentary that explores ancient liturgical practices similar to the scenes in Revelation while looking at Revelation in a mystical manner. Watts offers Revelation as an early liturgy, using this proposition as a catalyst for building prayers and a vision of life based on the Eucharist as the emblem of how we are to approach God. What emerges is a profound view on how we envision Scripture, prayer, and the book of Revelation.

Paper Accepted – AAR-EIR 2014 (Jesus as Primary Actor)

The information is here. My ultimate goal is to turn this into an essay for a collection by the end of the year.

The question of “who killed Jesus?” arises periodically. Oftentimes, we hear the traditional chants of “the Jews” or “the Romans” while in some quarters we are beginning to hear “God did it.” If we were reading Paul, these answers are sufficient; however, based on the Gospel of Mark I propose a different reading. Instead of Jesus as a sacrifice, I suggest that because God is absent and has forsaken Israel during the Roman occupation Jesus acts to take within himself the chaos of a God-abandoned cosmos so as to order a new world. I offer this interpretation through a reading of Lucan’s Pharsalia, focusing on the character of Cato the Younger.

This paper will argue that if we place the Jesus of Mark’s Gospel next to the Cato of Lucan’s poem, what emerges is an image not of a sacrifice whereby Jesus was only a willing victim forced by God, but a “divine man” and “hero” who acts by his own will to save Israel when God has abandoned his people. Based on this interpretative measure, Mark 14.36, is no longer a desire to be free from the sacrificial duties, but a request that God act where he has not acted before. Further, 15.34 stands to represent not simply the abandonment of Jesus, but so too of Israel. After briefly detailing Paul’s language of Jesus’s act, I will show a literological connection existing between Jesus in Mark’s Gospel and Cato in Lucan’s Pharsalia. Finally, I will offer a path forward on the question of “who killed Jesus?” by reading Mark through the disaffected Roman poet’s eyes.

Two recent reviews for From Fear to Faith (@energion)

MAKE SURE TO READ ALL OF THEIR REVIEW AT THE LINKS BELOW!

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First, thanks to Charles for this one!

The titles of the ebook are set against an illustration of a concrete block wall which is indicative of the subtitle: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls. The intro is concise and reveals the editors’ intent, which from my POV exemplifies the growing practice that conservative Christian churches will often deceive, whether unwittingly or with malice. Throughout this review, I shall take the liberty to use the first names of the story tellers, for it is a long-standing Christian tradition, plus weren’t the Gospels written on a first-name basis? Also, I’m only reviewing in-depth the first 4 essays, because they are a good representative sample of the very interesting reads a reader—you—will realize. Then, I’ll offer my summation along with the editors’ conclusion.

And here is David‘s:

For many of us, we have seen the church is sick and wish to speak the warnings that the Lord has for the church, in order that the church might be whole. Sadly, there are places where the church has rejected that message of correction.

Bottom line: Get this book.

Working on my Dissertation – something I’ve murdered, for now

Image taken from page 97 of 'The Chinese as th...

Image taken from page 97 of ‘The Chinese as they are: their moral, social, and literary character. A new analysis of the language; with … views of their … arts and sciences’ (Photo credit: The British Library)

I had to remove some stuff from the prospectus when I turned it into chapter 1. I am studying under Dr. Francois Tolmie, at the University of the Free State, doing a literary analysis of the Fourth Gospel and its use of Deuteronomy. What I hope to do is to do a complete analysis of every way the author of the Fourth Gospel has used the Fifth Book of Moses to tell his tale. I will invest a heavy portion of the dissertation into quotations, allusions, and echoes — then, I hope, I will over something by way of the way “John” structures his book to look something like Deuteronomy. 

I *think I see something I would like to explore, so we will see.

What follows is an unedited portion I removed.

3.4       Example of Quotations and Allusions

In looking for possible quotations and allusions, I will begin with Hans Hübner’s work, Evangelium Secundum Iohannem.[1] This portion of my work will attempt to show a Johannine appreciation of Deuteronomy as well as his use of quotes and allusions to alert his readers to his grander literary design based on Deuteronomy. As Labahn has demonstrated, the use of Deuteronomy as a quotable source is limited.[2] He points to John 8:17 as the only likely quote attributed to Deuteronomy (calling to his side two Deuteronomic witnesses, 17:6 and 19:15). We must eliminate Deuteronomy 17:15 given (with the methodology to be developed later), the passage around it does not give itself to acting as a mnemonic cue.

That leaves us with two contending passages for John’s source, either Numbers 35:30 or Deuteronomy 19:15. The passage in John presents a challenge to Jesus by the Jewish leaders who questioned his manner of truth if he could only offer testimony on his own behalf. The passage in Numbers 35:30, following the discussion on the murderer, relates the requirements to have two witnesses to put the criminal to death. Deuteronomy 19:15, on the other hand, speaks to the accusation against someone who has sinned. Deuteronomy declares the priests must judge the accusation while including a warning against the false accuser. John’s passage includes Pharisees, the Temple setting, and a passive proclamation that Jesus’s accusers are making false statements. It is much more likely John is quoting from Deuteronomy rather than Numbers.

I will now offer, based on a proposed allusion by Hübner, an example of the work I plan to accomplish.[3] He proposes a possible connection between Deuteronomy 16:2 and John 2:15 based on πρόβατα καὶ βόας.[4] Exodus 12:32 contains the exact word order found in John, πρόβατα καὶ τοὺς βόας, while the word order matching Deuteronomy 16:2 is found in Psalm 8:8. As to be discussed in the chapter on critical theory of allusions, for an allusion to work as an intentional ploy of the author, the allusion must serve as a cue to a larger intertextual frame. Neither Exodus 12:32 nor Psalm 8:8 give to John the needed imagery to allow us to consider this phrase an allusion. Only Deuteronomy does. Again, I must refer back to the imagery present to identify the likelihood of the allusive allowance. In John, Jesus is presenting his body as the Temple whereas in Deuteronomy, the Temple is in only view. This is not all. The Johannine passage takes place near the Passover (John 2:13) whereas Deuteronomy calls for the Passover to take place in the Temple (16:1). Both passages share the Passover and Temple imagery, as well as the ultimate Passover as an expected future event.[5] For Deuteronomy, it is the building of the Temple whereas for John, it is with the death of Jesus.

If we can find more allusions between Deuteronomy, using them to act as signs for larger intertextual frames, we will begin to see the larger role the Fifth Book of Moses plays in the Fourth Gospel. Such allusions, I contend, are replete, adding structure to John’s writing so that John should not be interpreted apart from Deuteronomy, but nestled in an almost inter-linear fashion. The search for allusions, rather than direct quotations will give us this possibility as well as allow us to examine what, if any, these additional recognized intertextual frames contribute to understanding an overall Johannine theology and intent.

3.5       Example of Neologism Work

The word dedicated to allusions will included a specialized section focused on examining the possibility of John’s use of the neologisms created by the septuagintal translator of Deuteronomy. There are two lists of neologisms, based on two different critical texts. The first is found in Wevers’ Notes on the Greek Text of Deuteronomy.[6] The second is in Göttingen Septuagint. The second list is found in Cécile Dogniez and Marguerite Harl’s work, based on Rahlfs’ critical edition.[7] What I intend to do here, briefly, is to show a positive end to the search of neologisms as a possible allusion in John as well as a negative.

Towards the negative boundary of exploration is the exploitation of the neologism that evolved into the name of the fifth book of the Torah, Δευτερονόμιον (Deut. 17:18). In several instances, we find John referring to an action of Jesus with δεύτερος.[8] While we may wish to see something in the passages relating to a second birth of sorts, nothing quite approaches an allowance to see δευτερονόμιον behind the various instances of δεύτερος in the Fourth Gospel.

We may find a positive allusion to a Greek Deuteronomic neologism in John 19:5, referring to Deuteronomy 1:31.[9] The neologism created by the translator of Deuteronomy is τροφοφορέω, used twice in this verse. Likewise, it is used in 2 Maccabees 7:27. Both books are likely in John’s cognitive environment. Equally, both passages under review contain images likely to have influenced the author of the Fourth Gospel. However, whereas 2 Maccabees relates the natural course of the mother and the child, the passage in Deuteronomy contains the imagery of God who fights for Israel and, more importantly, εἴ τις τροφοφορήσει ἄνθρωπος τὸν υἱὸν. God is bearing Israel as a man bears his son. John uses this hapax legomenon to imagine Jesus φορῶν τὸν ἀκάνθινον στέφανον καὶ τὸ πορφυροῦν ἱμάτιον. Given the similarity in imagery, if only in theology, it is possible John uses for the only time in his Gospel a word to harken back to God bearing Israel as a man bears his son.We must admit, however, beyond the theological allusions, the use of a neologism in Deuteronomy with a similar hapax legomenon in the Fourth Gospel is not in of itself completely convincing.[10] It may be that we are seeing a Deuteronomic theological allusion in use by John because of a hyper-focus by the examiner; to remedy that, I will not insist on these as allusions, if the evidence is this flimsy, but seek to present them as echoes indicating some contextual verbal hints in John’s vocabulary.

Admittedly, this is a rather weak connection and while I will use one or two of these weak analogies to showcase the stronger ones, it is less likely such a exposed allusion will be used to prove any substantial connections between Deuteronomy and John. Of course, I will beg the reader to allow for echoes to abound in John’s vocabulary so that while choice may imply purpose, there are those choices in the author’s mind we cannot so well gauge as to remain confident as to their purpose, as if one purpose is more explicable than one accident.


[1] Hans Hübner, Antje Labahn, and Michael Labahn, Evangelium Secundum Iohannem 2003.

[2]Labahn in Menken and Moyise, 84.

[3]Hübner, Evangelium Secundum Iohannem, 59–60

[4] πρόβατα καὶ τοὺς βόας (John 2:15)

[5] See Michael A. Daise, Feasts in John: Jewish Festivals and the Jesus’ “Hour” in the Fourth Gospel (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2007). Daise proposed the use of feasts to denote a narrative aspect of John. If his premise is correct, then we can see more easily an allusion to Deuteronomy 16 (as opposed to Exodus 12 or Psalm 8) due to this particular pass of Deuteronomy focusing on the proper celebration of the feasts.

[6] John William Wevers, Notes on the Greek Text of Deuteronomy (Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 1995.)

[7] Cécile Dogniez and Marguerite Harl, La Bible d’Alexandrie LXX, Tome 5: Le Deuteronome (Paris: Le Cerf, 1992).

[8] John 3:4, 4:54, 9:24, 21:16

[9] The ultimate purpose of using this neologism is to first show the work under the soon-to-developed methodology and not argue convincingly for its determined purpose.

[10] There are natural arguments against the allowance of this as a intertextual allusion. The first is the use of the figurative language in the LXX, something John either ignores or misses as the Evangelist strips the word (as with the removal of τροφο) of the language needed to conjure the image of a caring, or nursing, person. Jesus is not the caring individual here, but in need of care. Second, there are the other New Testament usages, such as in Matthew 11:8 and 1 Corinthians 15:49. The answer to a possible weakness in this example is to beg allowance that John may simply use the word to call attention to the larger intertextual framework he may employ here while the answer to the second opposition is to suggest we examine vocabulary in John as Johannine rather than as New Testament.