August 11, 2007

Mark 14.26-31

After singing the Passover hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. And Jesus said, "You will all fall from your faith. For it stands written: 'I will strike the shepherd down and the sheep will be scattered.' Nevertheless, after I am raised again, I will go on before you into Galilee."

Peter answered, "Everyone else may fall away, but I will not."

Jesus said, "I tell you this. Today, this very night, before the cock crows twice, you yourself will deny me three times."

But he insisted and repeated, "Even if I must die with you, I will never disown you." And they all said the same.

1 Comments:

At 10:34 AM, Blogger forrest said...

Okay, we're referring here to Zechariah 13.7->

According to the notes in my (New Oxford Annotated) Bible this is one of the chapters (9-14) probably added by later admirers of Zechariah. I certainly find that whole section confusing, a mixture of predictions of corruption, misrule, great military success, compassion for (as I read it) their defeated enemies, an end to true prophecy, all the goyim of the earth attacking Jerusalem & suffering plagues (even on their animals!), followed by their eventual conversion. "And on that day there shall no longer be a trader in the House of the Lord!"

It seems likely that Jesus knew this book and found meaning in it. Even possible that he went to the Mount of Olives that night in hopes that "The Lord will go forth and fight against those nations as when he fights on a day of battle," as in Zechariah 14.3-4. "The Egyptian" mentioned by Josephus, who brought a crowd to the Mt of Olives in expectation of deliverance, only to suffer massacre, must certainly have been putting his hope in that prophecy. (If only the dates didn't mismatch so badly, I'd think this was a backhanded depiction of Jesus, who was subsequently described in Rabbinical accounts as a man who'd learned magic in Egypt & by speaking The Name produced wonders that misled many... I've yet to see how any of this fits together, if it does.)

So did Jesus say this because the Scriptures of his day suggested it to him, or did later writers, constructing an account of what "must have happened," say that Jesus did so because they'd found this passage, and were sure he would have consulted the right book & found his fate in it?

How much of this story is "survivor's guilt" from people who unaccountably were not caught and punished by the Romans that night?--& how much of it from Hellenized churches where some leaders may have welcomed stories discrediting their rivals in the Jerusalem church? (How early did that sort of politicing set in? This gospel has disciples already disputing over who gets the best throne, when the Kingdom is established.) I dunno, I dunno! It's a good story.

 

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