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File: 1491067848164.png (519.13 KB, 300x169, GOSPELMARK.png)

No.5295

> Almost nobody realizes that Jesus is the Son of Man, and they have no clue how he is able to perform all those miracles
> Even when Peter is right on him being the messiah, he misunderstands what it entails
> Jesus's apostles fall asleep while he's praying that he doesn't have to suffer
> He gets betrayed by one of his own apostles
> His followers abandon him when the Pharisees take hold of him
> At the cross, Jesus himself asks God why He has forsaken him
> It's a Roman who declares that he was the messiah, not one of Jesus's followers
> The book ends with three women emphatically NOT spreading the gospel out of fear

Is the Gospel of Mark a satire? Why is it so negative about Jesus's early followers?

  No.5296

Well, there is no definitive answer here.

But there are some things to consider.

1, Mark is most likely the second gospel written. Some place it first given its brevity, lack of Christ teachings in example, etc, with what amounts to an argument that the 'simplest would come first.' However Mathew, which was initially written in Aramaic, not Greek (hence a language of Jews, not early Christians), and that gospel's clear colloquialisms of Jews speaking to other Jews, not Genitals, places it closer in time from authoring to the events it records than Mark in that context.

2, Mark if it is second, is also written in Greek. So now you have a language, and hence a cultural transition between the time, people, and culture of those events recorded, and how they are presented to the reader. (Sort of hard not to over stress how important this is). In brief, thats a lot of room for the 'telephone game' to play in.

3, It is written during the initial 'fermentation' of Christian identity and theological development. This wasn't most likely a document written to pass down the most accurate of histories. This was written by a group, early Christians under Roman persecution, more so looking to desperately keep some evidence of their existence and beliefs recorded.

4, Why does Scientology wait until OT III to tell you about Xenu? Or in this context, another possibility is the author(s) did not feel it served the needs of the growing, but in many place underground faith, to plainly lay out the concept of Christ as the son of God. Many early Christians clearly did not share that idea, with many early missionaries finding the concept a hinderance and far too fantastic to include in their teachings. As a matter of being pragmatic, and unsure of what exactly being the Messiah meant, the author(s) may have well chose to not speak on it clearly for lack of their own knowledge and understanding.

5, It is written to be relatable to the people of the times. That being those trapped under Rome's rule, in bondage, etc. To make it more relatable, a message of 'now is the time for survival, and hope of a distant paradise some day' than to preach of a coming great liberation. Despite what people may believe about the intelligence of the average person then. They could see the utter unquestioned absoluteness of Roman rule about them. As preaching the word of the son of God might be too fantastic, so would be preaching the imminent fall of Rome by some sudden divine intervention. Once again to keep things relatable, and practical, the realities of the times for Christians would be captured in the gospel of Mark, meaning Christians in a time of fear and needing to survive.

Or at least those are some points I think matter to the questions you raise on Mark. I would guess a lot of others with study in the gospels could come up with many more, or counter points to them.

  No.5299

To start with, I apologise for the length of this post, I just got a little carried away. A disclaimer since I realise sometimes I can get a little fervid -- I'm an atheist who happens to have an abiding interest in exegesis and Biblical history, neither a believer nor a rabid disprover. Anyway ...

>>5296
> Mark is most likely the second gospel written
Although there is a healthy body of scholarship that argues for Matthean priority, I think it's fair to say that almost all Biblical scholars agree that Matthew and Luke were written later, both of them having drawn from both Mark and Q to form more theologically/narratively coherent and fleshed-out gospels. It's not just about the brevity of Mark, although that is a significant argument in its favour.
> Mathew, which was initially written in Aramaic
There's absolutely no evidence of this. Matthew wrote in the common Greek of the Eastern Mediterranean. His audience was Jewish, and he was focusing on the essentially Jewish nature of Jesus' theology, but there's no evidence that he wrote in any of Jesus' sayings in the original language(s) in which they would have been delivered (Aramaic, and probably Hebrew).
> Many early Christians clearly did not share [the idea of Jesus as Messiah]
This is a good point, although I would phrase it differently: I think most, if not all, of the first Christians really did believe in the idea of Christ as a harbinger of the end of days etc. There were loads of apocalyptic preachers banging around at that time (John the Baptist being the next-most-famous) and their popularity is probably explained by what you outlined in #5. But it's a big conceptual leap to go from prophet to Son of God, foretold by Isaiah, etc etc, so a lot of the early Gentile converts (who outnumbered Jewish converts significantly) just left it out.

Only later was the point about his being the Son of God really appreciated for its full theological implications (see the early councils of the church). It could be argued that figuring out what it means is an ongoing process, and is still being done by Christians today. It's been said that the stubbornness of the disciples that OP finds so frustrating were meant to parallel the early church and its reception of Christ's message. They're really into him because he's charismatic and clearly knows what he's on about, but when it comes to tests of their comprehension or faith it becomes clear that they haven't really grokked what Jesus was trying to tell them. Again going on a slightly whimsical tangent, you could also argue that every individual Christian recapitulates this process over the course of their life.

(1/2)

  No.5300

It's also important to note that the idea of unjust but holy sufferance is _central_ to the conception of the Messiah and to the Jewish religion more broadly (the Messiah being the culmination and epitome of the Jewish faith, it makes sense that he will suffer the most). You can track the development of this theme through the old Testament, of course Exodus is classic but it matures quite a lot through Psalms and the books of the prophets before reaching its apex in Job. So it's a crucial part of the Messiah narrative that Jesus suffer, be ignored and vilified by his own people, and finally handed over to the enemy by the Pharisees, those who claim to maintain the law of Moses but actually corrupt it to gain worldly power. If his life is a gallery of suffering, then his disciples should be his solace -- and often they are. But even they let him down, lose faith at critical moments, or fail to understand even when they really want to. That's at least my interpretation of the underlying aspects behind this behaviour in the disciples.

Maybe that's enough to go some way to answering your question, but I'll also say this: naturally we'd like to know whether a gospel passage (pericope) is historically valid (of course this is just a matter of likelihood, not any kind of "truth"). An important tool used by Biblical scholars for this purpose is the criterion of embarrassment -- basically, it observes the same thing as you, OP, that there are plenty of passages in the gospels that don't fit in with the "literally sinless perfect son of God" vibe. The criterion of embarrassment posits that these passages probably survived because they were widely-known facts of Jesus' life, so all the zealous authors could do is sugar-coat the incidents as best they could. The relatively thin layer of sugar in Mark compared to, say, Matthew, or especially John, is another argument for its priority. There are some good examples here [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcan_priority#Hard_readings] if you want to see more, but if you just finished reading Mark they won't be new to you.

There are other criteria of authenticity that scholars use to evaluate gospels, too, of course; in the end, it's a matter of taking _all_ the possible evidence you can find, weighing them against your criteria, and making a judgment call about the likelihood of the historicity of the event. This is a kind of faith -- but not a religious one! Rather it's a social-scientific one, and it's needed when evaluating events from the life of Brutus or Genghis Khan, too. Actually, compared to those figures, it's kind of amazing how much material we have on Jesus considering his insignificance at the time he was alive.

Since this is /lit/ I'll recommend the book that I found most invaluable in learning all of this. "A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the Historical Jesus" by John P. Meier is an incredible piece of historical scholarship, really a pleasure to read. It runs to five volumes, so it's pretty hefty, but the first two alone will equip you with more knowledge than you know what to do with.

(2/2)

  No.5301

>>5299
you have made it non-apparent that He was crucified for theft from the state - not the opposite where he was assumed a prophet before being convicted... He was only called these things to mock him further upon being caught and trialled, perhaps explains why the women didn't preach after his death they weren't wanting to ridicule him.

> Jesus himself asks God


God existed as a precept well before Jesus and His own dedication isn't really even explained or detailed that well before the disciples ran on with their individual retellings so I don't see how that is something worth noting beyond enything else, though people seem to believe this was an actual conversation with God not a criminal begging for his life.

  No.5312

>>5295
>>At the cross, Jesus himself asks God why He has forsaken him

He's referencing Psalm 22 i think, which has quite an opposite meaning in context

  No.5349

>>5299
Thanks for correcting him. I saw so many mistakes and didn't have the energy to correct him myself, I wanted to see some discussion first. You also understand my point better.

>>5300
> It's also important to note that the idea of unjust but holy sufferance is _central_ to the conception of the Messiah and to the Jewish religion more broadly (the Messiah being the culmination and epitome of the Jewish faith, it makes sense that he will suffer the most). You can track the development of this theme through the old Testament, of course Exodus is classic but it matures quite a lot through Psalms and the books of the prophets before reaching its apex in Job. So it's a crucial part of the Messiah narrative that Jesus suffer, be ignored and vilified by his own people, and finally handed over to the enemy by the Pharisees, those who claim to maintain the law of Moses but actually corrupt it to gain worldly power. If his life is a gallery of suffering, then his disciples should be his solace -- and often they are. But even they let him down, lose faith at critical moments, or fail to understand even when they really want to. That's at least my interpretation of the underlying aspects behind this behaviour in the disciples.
Not really. The Messiah was mainly imagined as a powerful person, possibly a king, who would deliver the Jews from oppression with armed forces. There was the notion of sufferance as well, but that was in no way associated with the Messiah. Combining these two is an invention by Jesus's followers, probably to make sense of his unexpected defeat.

> naturally we'd like to know whether a gospel passage (pericope) is historically valid (of course this is just a matter of likelihood, not any kind of "truth"). An important tool used by Biblical scholars for this purpose is the criterion of embarrassment -- basically, it observes the same thing as you, OP, that there are plenty of passages in the gospels that don't fit in with the "literally sinless perfect son of God" vibe. The criterion of embarrassment posits that these passages probably survived because they were widely-known facts of Jesus' life, so all the zealous authors could do is sugar-coat the incidents as best they could.

Yeah, I know that as the criterion of dissimilarity. I agree that it's a good method.

> The relatively thin layer of sugar in Mark compared to, say, Matthew, or especially John, is another argument for its priority.

I'm not sure that this is a good argument. It could've been that the first gospel was written by a very evangelizing person, and then later another writer came along who preserved the more historically accurate stories (which were still being circulated).

I'm not interested in debating Markan priority, since I'm already convinced of it. I just think there are better arguments for it.

  No.5350

>>5295
Humans are soykafty, anon.
Duh.
It helps the believably, though.
If they were lying they wouldn't have had him yell at tress and be betrayed by all his friends and soykaf.
It picks up in Acts tho.

  No.5351

>>5312
Woah holy soykaf never noticed that