ANNUAL SEMINAR ON OT IN NT HAWARDEN 2017
Wednesday 5th April
Session 1 Chair: Susan Docherty
8.00 – 8.15 Welcome and Introductions
8.15 – 9.15 David Lees – Textual Ripples: A Different Methodological Approach
Thursday 6th April
From 8.00 Breakfast
Session 2 Chair: Steve Moyise
9.15 – 10.30 Joshua Coutts – The Catalyzing Role of Scripture for John’s Gospel
10.30 – 11.00 Coffee Break
Session 3 Chair: David Allen
11.00 – 12.30 Rikk Watts- Rethinking Context in the Relationship of Israel’s Scriptures to the NT: Character, Agency, and the Possibility of Genuine Change
12.30 – 1.00 Break
3.30 – 4.10 Tea
Session 4 Chair: Susan Docherty
4.15 – 5.15 Bart Koet – A Tale of two Teachers: Jesus About Jesus and John the Baptist
5.15 – 6.15 Anthony Royle – The Vorlage of Paul’s Citation in Ephesians 5:14: New Horizons
6.15 – 6.45 Break
Session 5 Chair: Steve Moyise
8.00 – 9.00 David Allen – What Makes ‘Two by Two’ Ark-etypal?
Friday 7th April
From 8.00 Breakfast
Session 5 Chair: Steve Smith
9.15 – 10.15 Kelsie Rodenbiker – Quotation vs Characterization: The Catholic Epistles and Old Testament Exemplars
10.15 – 10.45 Coffee Break
Session 6 Chair: Susan Docherty
10.45 – 11.45 Georg Walser – Quoted Text and Interpretation: Is There Always a Correspondence?
11.45 – 12.45 Hans Lammers – The Textual Form of the Quotation from Isaiah 6:10 in Mark 4:12: Influence from a Targumic Tradition or an Example of Inner-Gospel Exegesis?
12.45 – 1.00 Closing Reflections and Plans for Hawarden 2018
1.00 Lunch followed by departures
David Lees: Textual Ripples: A Different Methodological Approach?
In my research into the possible New Testament reception of the book of Esther, I have encountered difficulties by following more accepted methodological approaches such as Hays’ criteria. With the lack of NT scholarship that looks back to the book of Esther, one can enter circular arguments that are difficult to break out of (with regards to issues of volume and recurrence). As such, in this paper I will put forward the working hypothesis of a new methodology that, rather than looking back to the book of Esther, aims to travel forward with the book of Esther into the New Testament texts and world. To shape this, I propose the metaphor of textual ripples; each text is like a ripple or wave that travels outward from its original source interacting in different ways with different obstacles. Some ‘obstacles’ would be passed over and no interaction made, others cause the ripple to change direction, others may lead to ‘constructive interference’ where two or more waves converge, others may be more like a cliff face that cause a strong reaction with ‘textual spray.’ The context of the New Testament would determine the different forms of obstacle – accounting for the possibility that there may be no obstacle – and direct the researcher to evaluate whether there is textual evidence for this interaction. Rather than starting with a New Testament author and looking at what sources they use to shape their own text, this paper aims to open a conversation on how research can being with an Old Testament text and looking at how it may have rippled into, and reacted with, the New Testament context. This proposed methodology will be explored with a case study of the possibility that Esth. 8:17 can be identified in Gal. 2:14 through the word ιουδαιζω.
Joshua Coutts: The Catalyzing Role of Scripture for John’s Gospel
Many New Testament studies of intertextuality focus on how NT authors appropriate OT texts and themes. Observations are made on the hermeneutical principles which underlie the use of the OT, the interpretive tradition within which the NT authors operate, and the unique theological or stylistic motivations which may account for adaptations of the OT in new contexts. The comparison of texts has proven very instructive for answering such “how” questions, as we can observe similarities and differences in the use of the OT. Yet, often implicit in these discussions, are assumptions about why NT authors draw upon the OT. The question of what catalysts moved NT authors to draw upon the OT is more difficult to answer. Nevertheless, an attempt will be made in this paper to do so, with particular attention to John’s Gospel. There are likely several catalysts for John’s use of Scripture including an emerging Gospel tradition, the need to address problems such as Jewish obduracy, and the desire to legitimate the allegiance to Jesus of an emerging Jesus-community as contiguous with the narrative and promises of Israel. In addition to these, this paper will explore the possibility that Scripture in general, and perhaps particular texts of Scripture, were used against this emerging Jesus community (cf. John 5.39; 6.31; 7.52), and consequently had become a flashpoint around which the uniquely Johannine Gospel tradition coalesced.
Rikk Watts: Rethinking Context in the Relationship of Israel’s Scriptures to the NT: Character, Agency, and the Possibility of Genuine Change
Employing Collingwood’s notion of “historical imagination,” this paper seeks to imagine how the NT writers related to Israel’s Scriptures. Two assumptions appear foundational. First, as the eternal word of Israel’s unique and only God and creator, the faithful and unchanging Yahweh, the Scriptures were normative in revealing his character and in articulating his relationship with his creation and their relationship with him. If so, it makes better sense methodologically, to begin, not the with NT use of the OT, but Israel’s Scriptures’ normative shaping on the NT. Second, given Israel’s unique understanding of Yahweh and of his creation (gifting it with the possibility of genuine change) this relationship is primarily neither conceptual nor even literary but personal. Since persons are known through their agency (MacMurray), that is words and deeds over time, the fundamental orientation and “grammar” of this relationship ought to be historical and narratival. If so, “context” becomes a matter of where a given textually construed event fits into the larger narrative of Yahweh’s relationship to his creation and particularly what it says of his character and thus what Israel and the creation can expect of his future actions. This paper proposes that when viewed from this perspective the NT authors see what Yahweh has done in Christ to be both entirely consistent with his past and promised future interventions, and more profoundly revealing, of his character. We will examine some example texts, but hopefully allow considerable time for discussion.
Bart Koet: A Tale of Two Teachers – Jesus about Jesus and John the Baptist (Luke 7:18-35)
This paper poses a question about where we can find a great wisdom teacher who uses children’s rhymes to depict his teachings. Such a teacher can be found in Luke 7:31-35, where Jesus explains both his own teaching and John the Baptist’s and defends their teachings, albeit so different from each other, by referring to a children’s song. An analysis of the communication shows that in 7:35 there is a reference to the fact that all the people and even all the tax collectors choose the baptism of John and that therefore there is a possibility for the audience to become children of Wisdom by joining one of the teachers.
Anthony Royle: The Vorlage of Paul’s Citation in Eph. 5:14: New Horizons
The Vorlage of Ephesians 5:14 has been disputed by various scholars. The citation is introduced by the authoritative words “He (God) says”; however, there are no Scriptures that match the citation word for word, which has led to various hypothesises regarding its origin. Some scholars have noted similarities of phrases used in Ephesians 5:14 (Awake O Sleeper and rise from the dead) with Isaiah 26:19 (O dwellers in the dust, awake and sing or Joy) and Isaiah 60:1 (Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you). The difficulty with this view is that Paul’s citation uses a different tense in Greek to Isaiah LXX. Furthermore, the insertion of the title χριστον (And Christ will shine on you) in place of the Isaiah LXX’s more frequent title, κυριον (Isaiah 60:1), indicates that it is unlikely Paul was citing any known written text of Isaiah and that the Ωorlage is Christian in origin. In response, some scholars have speculated Paul used an unknown apocryphal source, and even a Gnostic writing, for his citation. The majority view is that Paul is citing an early Christian baptism hymn that was inspired by a Spiritual song (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16); however, the hymn is unlike any other creedal statement of the early church in the New Testament and the issue of baptism does not fit the context of Ephesians 5. As scholars have sought to propose a written Vorlage for Paul’s citation in past studies, this papers looks to new horizons of research that may lend to the evolution of Paul’s citation from Isaianic texts. I propose that the change of grammar, the conflation of texts, and the insertion of words in Paul’s citation from the LXX are impacted by three influences; rhetoric, social memory, and religious experience. Recent NT studies in these three areas have shown how they impact the citation technique of Paul and other NT writers, as well as their Jewish and Greco-Roman contemporaries. This paper seeks to highlight their importance to understanding the influence of Isaiah in Paul’s citation in Eph. 5:14.
Dave Allen: What makes ‘two by two’ ark-etypal?
In a recent article, Joan Taylor explores the accounts of Jesus sending disciples out 2 by 2, and concludes that this is an allusion to the Noah account of 2 by 2 entry onto the ark (with the implication that Jesus dispatches male and female ‘missionaries’ in such pairs). Taylor presents the allusion pretty much as an established given, and focuses more on the outcomes, so to speak, of the implied allusion. I would like to use her thesis on the mooted allusion as some sort of test case – what methodological assumptions does she make, and on what grounds does her proposal correlate with current OT/NT approaches?
Kelsie Rodenbiker: Quotation vs Characterization: The Catholic Epistles and Old Testament Exemplars
This paper examines the use of Old Testament (OT) exemplars by the seven-letter collection of Catholic Epistles (CE). Is their approach a matter of textual access, as some have suggested (e.g., Popkes regarding James)? I argue that, despite the diversity of authorship, dating, and theme within the CE, their use of exemplary OT figures is indeed strategic. There are fourteen OT quotations throughout the CE (primarily in 1 Peter), but eighteen exemplary figures. Significant connections to parabiblical/pseudepigraphal literature may be seen with regard to these figures (especially Enoch and Michael in Jude). However, read within the context of the canon they nonetheless evoke OT narratives. Further, because at least some of the CE can be shown to make use of textual material aside from their use of exemplars, I argue that access cannot be the only operative matter. I suggest, then, that the seven-letter collection presents a unique witness to the citation of OT figures alongside, and perhaps even in place of, quotations.
Georg Walser: Quoted Text and Interpretation; Is There Always a Correspondence?
When working with quotations from the Old Testament in the New, the correspondence between a quoted text and its interpretation can in some cases be very hard to comprehend. Mostly, this difficulty is due to the fact that we, of course, cannot know what was in the mind of the interpreter. However, in a few cases the quoted text is extant in various forms, and occasionally one of the variant readings seems to fit the interpretation better than the one found in the actual quotation. The question arises, if perhaps the interpreter had another version of the text in mind from the one quoted, when he made his interpretation. In Qumran there are some well-known examples, where this might be the case. This is also true for some interpretations in the Midrashim and in the early Church Fathers. But what about the New Testament? Are there any such examples in the New Testament, where the quoted text is not the text in the mind of the interpreter, i.e., the author of the New Testament text? And what could possibly be the reason for quoting one version of a text and presenting an interpretation of a different one?
Hans Lammers: The Textual Form of the Quotation from Isaiah 6,10 in Mark 4,12: Influence from a Targumic Tradition or an Example of Inner-Gospel Exegesis?
In the Gospel of Mark we encounter some 25 quotations from the Old Testament. An analysis of the textual form of all of these quotations shows that most of these depend on the LXX. In addition, the textual form of only a few quotations agrees verbatim with any of the extant LXX versions of the passage quoted. In some instances, we find a difference in textual form not accounted for by any OT version of the passage quoted which at the same time does result in a shift of meaning (e.g. Isaiah 6,10 in Mark 4,12; Isa 29,13 in Mark 7,7; Exod 20,17/Deut 5,21 in Mark 10,19; Zech 13,7 in Mark 14,27. In this paper, I will address one of these quotations, that of Isaiah 6,10 in Mark 4,12. Whereas there are several indications that the textual form of the quotation of Isaiah 6,9-10 in Mark 4,12 is dependent upon the LXX, the final clause exhibits a deviation not accounted for by any extant version of the LXX nor by the Hebrew of the MT. Several scholars have explained Mark’s textual form here (ἀφεθῇ αὐτοῖς) as dependent upon a tradition which eventually ended up in Targum Jonathan. Yet, Mark’s καὶ ἀφεθῇ αὐτοῖς as an interpretation of the LXX’s καὶ ἰάσομαι αὐτούς fits the narrative context remarkably well. Mark’s deviant textual form may therefore be due to influence from the narrative context, and present an example of what I call ‘inner-gospel exegesis’. Specifically, I will analyze the preceding unit 3,20-35 as part of the larger literary section 3,7 – 4,34 and show how the issue of not receiving forgiveness is linked to important characters: the scribes from Jerusalem (3,22) and Jesus’s relatives (3,20-21). Both are of the opinion that Jesus’ ministry of healing and exorcism is the result of his being possessed by an unclean spirit (3,30). This opinion is designated as blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, an offense that will never be forgiven (3,29-30). According to the Markan narrator, this rejection to acknowledge Jesus’ ministry as driven by the Holy Spirit places the scribes and Jesus’s relatives outside the ‘family’ of Jesus-followers (3,30-35). It is to ‘those outside’ that the quotation of Isaiah 6,10 is applied in a form deviating from the LXX but fitting the context perfectly. At the end of my contribution, I will present a tentative answer to the question whether Mark’s deviant textual form of Isaiah 6,10 is due to inner-gospel exegesis or that his view of Jesus’ ministry is best understood as a midrash on the deviant targumic rendition of this biblical passage. My answer is that we have here an example of ‘inner-gospel exegesis’. I will propose that in the other instances in Mark where we meet a variant textual form of an OT quotation but cannot explain it by referring to extant OT versions, we may be faced with the same phenomenon.