066 Commentary

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This page forms part of the resources for 066 Wise and Understanding in the Jesus Database project of FaithFutures Foundation

Crossan Inventory | 066 Literature | 066 Parallels | 066 Commentary | 066 Poetry | 066 Images


John Dominic Crossan

Crossan [Historical Jesus] (p.349) locates this cluster within a complex of traditions that interpret Jesus using sapiential concepts: Jesus is understood as an agent of divine Wisdom (Sophia). Other related traditions in this complex include: 014 Eye Ear Mind [1/4], 032 Hidden Made Manifest [1/3], 045 Father and Son [1/3], 052 Yoke and Burden [1/3], 067 Hidden since Eternity [1/2], and 092 Knowing the Mystery [1/2].


The International Q Project reconstructs the original Q saying as follows:

At <that time> he said: I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for you hid these things from sages and the learned, and disclosed them to children. Yes, Father, for that is what it has pleased you to do.

The commentary in [The Five Gospels] (p. 322) notes that the

"contrast between the wise and untutored is consonant with the disposition of Jesus."

However, the possibility that this may have been an axiom reflecting popular wisdom, rather than a saying originating with Jesus, resulted in a Gray vote. When considered as a saying about privileged communication between Father and Son, the saying was voted Black by the Seminar:

The issue of privileged communication, however, is certainly at odds with Jesus' position, even with the preceding saying. Secret teaching passed on only to those in the inner circle would have been inimical to the openness and inclusiveness that was characteristic of Jesus, but it would have been congenial to the leaders of the new movement, whose positions of authority were made secure by the special knowledge they professed to possess.

Samuel T. Lachs

Lachs [Rabbinic Commentary on the New Testament] (p.195) notes that the Q thanksgiving passage is written in poetic form with balanced Semitic parallelism. The introductory phrase, "at that time," is also a common Semitic expression.

Gerd Luedemann

Luedemann [Jesus] (p.330f) notes that this Q passage has some affinities with Johannine theology (K. Hase coined the phrase, "a thunderbolt from the Johannine heaven"): namely, the mutual knowledge of Father and Son, and the use of "the Son" as a self-designation. He concludes that this material in not authentic, as it reflects post-Easter beliefs.

John P. Meier

Meier does not examine this cluster in the first three volumes of A Marginal Jew.