022 Commentary

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This page forms part of the resources for 022 Prophets Own Country in the Jesus Database project of FaithFutures Foundation

Crossan Inventory | 022 Literature | 022 Parallels | 022 Commentary | 022 Poetry | 022 Images | 022 Synopsis


Commentary

John Dominic Crossan

Crossan Historical Jesus, (347) considers this "a statement of unbrokered egalitarianism coming from the historical Jesus and not just from Mark's dislike of Peter." He asks just what was the precise tension between Jesus and his hometown, his family and especially his brothers? The obvious response that these people did not believe in Jesus or accept his vision of God's imperial rule is countered by their significant leadership roles within the early Christian movement after Jesus' death. Instead, Crossan offers an alternative suggestion:

If Jesus was a well-known magician, healer, or miracle-worker, first, his immediate family, and, next, his village, would expect to benefit from and partake in the handling of that fame and those gifts. Any Mediterranean peasant would expect an expanding ripple of patronage-clientage to go out from Jesus, through his family and his village, to the outside world. But what Jesus did, in turning his back on Nazareth and on his family, was repudiate such brokerage, and that, rather than belief or disbelief, was the heart of the problem. The complex 22 Prophet's Own Country [1/4] is simply Jesus' own experience of what we already heard aphoristically in 074 Peace or Sword [1/2]. This antibrokerage activity is confirmed, finally, by the very well attested complex 010 Receiving the Sender [1/5].


Jesus Seminar

The Seminar's voting record for this saying is particularly interesting. The item was first considered in a 1989 postal ballot and but was re-considered at the 1990 session in Sonoma. The Johannine version was not included in the postal ballot. In the initial ballot, the saying was rated Gray -- although in the case of the Thom version it had a weighted average of 0.49. When reconsidered the following year the saying was rated significantly higher: one third of the Fellows voted the John version Red, while half of them cast a Red vote for the Thom version. The final view of the Seminar was to assign a strong Pink rating, although in the case of the Thomas version it assigned a weighted average of 0.74 (just below the cut off point for Red).

  • Thom 31
  • Thom 31:1
  • Mark 6:4
  • Mark 6:4
  • Matt 13:57-58
  • Matt 13:57-58
  • Luke 4:24
  • Luke 4:24
  • John 4:44

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Gerd Luedemann

Luedemann Jesus, (38-40) considers the saying to be a general wisdom statement that Mark has inserted into the story of Jesus' rejection by his hometown people. He suggests that it "perhaps goes back to Jesus," while conceding that it could also have been attributed to Jesus at a later stage.


John P. Meier

Meier does not address the core saying in his first three volumes, although he spends considerable time on the incident in Nazareth and the issue of Jesus' actual biological relationship to the "brothers" named there [see esp. Marginal Jew I, 318-22]. Later in Marginal Jew II, (171) Meier briefly notes that Mark relates the saying to the rejection/execution of John the Baptist (Mark 6:17-29)