8 Comments

  1. Gary

    First, obviously, I am a rank amateur, so any comments I have need to be taken with a grain of salt.
    1. Found the paper interesting.
    2. Death/suicide by cross! Addressing this in the academic world, OK. Is this a comfortable subject for you to discuss with UMC members? If the answer is yes, good! Not that some agree or disagree, but that they don’t come unglued.
    3. “why have you forsaken me” at crucifixion and “you are my beloved son” at baptism in Mark were used by Gnostics to support doceticism. Since the paper concentrates on Mark, Irenaeus might review your paper by saying,”Ebionites use only the Gospel of Matthew, those who “separate Jesus from the Christ” (i.e. most Gnostics) use only Mark, the Marcionites use only Luke, and the Valentinian Gnostics use only John.”
    So, was the author of Mark a gnostic, since committing suicide seems to indicate the life in the physical world is all bad, so might as well shuffle off this mortal coil to be in the spirit world? Paul seemed to feel that way too.
    4. Hope the crayfish were good.

    Reply

    1. I’m not sure suicide would be physical life is bad. This is certainly not the case for Stoics or other cases of devotio. Rather, it has to be a sacrifice – so that physical life is paramount, but above that is the peace of the cosmic order/society/empire. It wasn’t about being in the spiritual world, but about what good can come from spilling one’s own blood.

      I’d like to discuss this more, but I think the audience has to be right.

      As far as point 3, remember – those verses are in the other Synoptics as well. And John seems to complete the quotation of Psalm 22.

      Reply

  2. I like it. The previous instance of self-sacrificing action of this kind would seem to me to be the Maccabean martyrs, who are acknowledged as “atoning” (as is Jesus); I hadn’t known of Lucan’s take on the situation. Suicide per se was maybe not yet very Jewish, though a little later was Masada, but there’s a clear precedent for suicide by refusing to bow to the invading civil authority. It seems to me that the situation of Israel’s relationship to God at the time is well developed in Jack Miles’ “God, a Biography”.

    Reply

    1. Looks like I need to read Miles. His book on Christ proposed a God-in-Christ divine suicide. This is…different than what I envision.

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  3. Complete amateur here and apologies if the answer is obvious and I’m just not getting it, but Google is not always a good friend when it comes to looking up Bible stuff. You say in your introduction that many episodes in Mark mirror events in the Jewish revolt. Where could I find a more detailed explanation of this idea?

    Thank you so much!

    Reply

      1. See, I knew there would be an obvious answer that I was missing! Thank you! On a somewhat related note, your left-hand navigation buttons for “New Here?” and “Publications” are not clickable (I’m using Chrome). All other links do work, though (at least that I’ve tested). When I hover my mouse over them, it turns into a typing symbol and the clicking, it does nothing.

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