New results from historical reading of the New Testament

Two papers written by Bent Kim Jepsen - Copyright. 2009/13.

Pastor of the Danish National Church. Cand. theol. et cand. art. of philosophy. Educated at The University of Aarhus. Author of four books published in Denmark.

These papers are written in Danish and translated. The author gives thanks to scholars like Joachim Jeremias, Geza Vermes, E. P. Sanders, John P. Meier, Gerd Theissen, John D. Crossan and Paula Fredriksen for their historical reading of the New Testament.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, Augsburg Fortress 1990.   

bkj@km.dk

 

1.   paper

The Origin of the Gospel

The Gospel is the message that Jesus died for our sins

 


Historical sources

We will now examine the biblical writings about core Christianity with a historical, methodical approach. We will verify whether or not it is likely, that Jesus himself has expressed, that he sacrificed his life. Did Jesus think he died for the sake of other people?

When history researchers are working with ancient texts, they seek first to reflect different characteristics of the texts, which may justify some texts being more historically plausible than others. These characteristics are called criteria.

The first criterion is the age of the texts.  When were they written? It is as important for the historian, to know the age of his source, as it is for archaeologists who dig into the past. From what period of civilization is the source?

This criterion is very important, especially when we work with biblical writings. They are indeed written in very different eras.

There is consensus among historians of religion and theologians, that the letters from the apostle Paul to various churches are the oldest writings in the New Testament. There is consensus that the Pauline letters were written in the middle of the 6.th decade A.D. The four gospels were written later - most likely from the 7.th decade until the beginning of the second century.



The earliest written

We find in Paul's 1st letter to the church in Corinth the earliest written mention of Jesus. This statement is believed to be written 20 years after Jesus pronounced it at Passover around 33 A.D. It is not a random opinion that Paul quotes from Jesus. Paul stresses that it is an opinion which is vital to the Christian message.

Paul writes: "For I have received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was handed over, took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said:" This is my body that is for you; do this in remembrance of me, "In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying," This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me!" (1 Corinthians 11:23-25).

Paul expresses two important things about the statement.
Firstly, he argues that Jesus himself told him so. Since Paul never met Jesus before Jesus was executed, either Jesus must have revealed it to Paul after his death, or Paul had to know about it from the people who knew Jesus personally. By referring to Jesus as the source, Paul stresses that this is true testimony of Jesus himself.
Secondly, Paul says that he has previously retold this statement of Jesus to the church in Corinth. That is to say that Jesus' statement had been known before it was written in Paul's letter.

How much earlier this statement of Jesus´ has been known, we do not know. But historians assume that Paul himself felt he was called by a revelation of the dead and buried Jesus a few years after Jesus' crucifixion, at the latest by the year 35 A.D. This means that the delivery, as we read it in Paul, has not had more than a few years to be influenced by the first Christian theology. Perhaps Paul himself has characterized most of the content of to the statement from Jesus.

Let us have a look at what it is that Jesus expresses in his statement. 

Jesus performs a symbolic action in relation to a meal, the night when he was "handed over", meaning "captured". He takes the bread from the table, breaks it into pieces and shares it with those who are with him, as he calls the bread his body. After the meal Jesus takes the cup with wine, and hands it over to those who are with him, as he calls the wine his blood and the new covenant of blood.

Jesus´ action with the bread and wine symbolizes the importance of his impending death. The conceptual pair 'body and blood" is characteristic of the Old Testament religion sacrifice terminology. The sacrificial cult at the temple in Jerusalem, spoke of "body and blood", not "body and soul", or the like. Jesus expresses his death to be a sacrifice.

In the words of the "new covenant blood" we get a reference as to why Jesus looked at his impending death as a sacrifice. He calls his blood the new covenant of blood. That is, the blood to be shed by instituting the new covenant. Thus Jesus brings the interpretation of his impending death into an Old Testament prophetic context, from whence the ideas of the new covenant were coming.

If Paul is right in saying that Jesus really has expressed this view of his death, then we will not only learn about Jesus' death, but also what his public work was about. It must have been about the new covenant.

Therefore, it is historically very important to investigate other source texts, than those we know from Paul. Are there any other sources which convey the same thing about Jesus instituting the new covenant?

 

More than one source

The next historical criterion is therefore, whether or not we can find more than one source. If there is more than one source of a tradition, it significantly increases the likelihood that the tradition is historical.

The later written gospels, Matthew, Mark and Luke, which are collectively called the synoptic gospels, deliver to us a second source about the nightly meal, before Jesus was taken prisoner. The oldest is St. Mark's Gospel, where we find the following:

"While they were eating, he took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to them, and said," Take: this is my body." Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. He said to them: "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many." (Mark 14: 22-24)

Variants in this St Mark's text we also find in Matthew. But we see that the crucial words deciphered by the symbolic act are the same as Paul conveys. The words about poured blood are about the new covenant. In Luke, we find a text where the choice of words from Paul is combined with a few words from Mark and Matthew.

These are the most important texts that are handed over to us about Jesus instituting the new covenant. There are two slightly different traditions behind them. The earliest is written by Paul and later Luke, and the other from Mark and Matthew is later than Paul´s. Both traditions provide the same deciphering of the symbolic act that Jesus performed at the meal. Historically, it is highly probable that Jesus performed the symbolic act as a deciphering of his impending death.

Some critical scholars have not been content with the existence of these very early and consistent traditions. They have read the texts with differing objections. Let us look at three major objections.

First objection:
A researcher has reasoned as follows: The Old Testament religion prohibits drinking blood. The Jews believed that the soul exists in the blood. Therefore it can´t be true that Jesus as a Jew would urge people to drink blood.
In addition to this it must be said that Jesus as a human being did not invite people to eat human flesh. Of course Jesus did not encourage cannibalism. There is a difference, whether Jesus invited the twelve to eat bread or eat his hand. Similarly, there is a difference whether Jesus invited them to drink wine or his blood. This difference was evident to those whom Jesus invited to eat bread and drink wine.

Second objection:
In the Pauline tradition it is mentioned, that Jesus takes the cup after the meal, and says: “Do this in remembrance of me.” This so-called repetition commandment is listed by the famous scholar Rudolf Bultmann as proof that the tradition has emerged among non-Jewish Christians after Jesus' death. There was a tradition for funeral gatherings in Hellenistic societies, as the Roman and Greek where something similar was said when a bowl was raised after the meal. R. Bultmann: “Jesus”, Germany 1926.

We may reply in two ways: First, the repetition commandment is not mentioned in the tradition we have from the Gospel of Mark. The repetition commandment may then have been added in to the Pauline tradition. This is not inconceivable, since Paul was recognized as an apostle of non-Jews.
Secondly - and it is more likely - already before the lifetime of Jesus there were several customs which had penetrated into Jewish life from the Roman Empire. These customs were brought to Israel by the many Jews who lived in the Roman cities outside the country of Israel. The Hellenistic influence on Jewish culture had been going on for many years before Jesus lived.

It is likely that Jesus began the late evening meal by breaking the bread, and closed the meal by letting the cup go around the table, saying that it was his body and blood, the new covenant of blood.

Third objection:
The following view is invoked by an American scholar John Domenic Crossan. Crossan is a significant researcher of the historical Jesus. He states that it is not historically likely that this tradition comes from Jesus himself, when a subsequent writing called Didake from the late 1st century doesn`t mention Jesus' death as a sacrifice in the sacrament prayer of thanksgiving. Crossan puts it like this:"I do not presume any distinctive meal known beforehand, designed specifically, or ritually programmed as final and forever. My reason for that position is a consideration of Didake 9-10 within the trajectory of Supper and Eucharist. ” J. D. Crossan:”The historical Jesus”, Edinburgh 1991, page 361.

 
Against this we have to consider that the author of Didake knew very well the sacrificial idea in connection with the sacrament. It appears in Didake 14.2 where the following guideline for the consumption of bread and wine occurs: "Let no one who has a dispute with his fellow come together with you until they are reconciled, that your sacrifice may not be defiled.

Crossan is right in this that sacrament prayer of thanksgiving in Didake 9-10 neither mentions Jesus' death symbolism, the Last Supper or Passover meal. But this is not unusual; even today, where there can be no doubt that the Christian churches know about these events.

The point is that these historical circumstances are not mentioned in the sacrament prayer of thanksgiving in the national church of Denmark either. Today a supper prayer of thanksgiving in the national church of Denmark reads:
"We thank thee, O Lord, our God, almighty Father, because you in your mercy have refreshed us with these esteemed gifts. We ask that you let thy gifts to us rightfully benefit to strengthen our faith, to entrench our hope and make love live among us, for your son, Jesus Christ, our Lord's sake.”

There is an ancient tradition in our Christian church for the design of the sacrament thanksgiving prayer without mentioning Jesus' death symbolism, the Last Supper or Passover meal. The tradition does not imply that these historical facts are unknown to the churches - neither in the national church of Denmark nor in the Syrian churches, where Didake originated.

We must agree with the historian of religion E.P. Sanders of Durham, North Carolina, USA, who has concluded about the Eucharist tradition: "The text in general has the strongest possible support .. in terms of certainty.” E. P. Sanders: “The historical figure of Jesus”, London 1993, page 263.

 

1. Conclusion

Historically it is certainly plausible that Jesus considered his own death as a sacrifice, and saw his death as a part of his public activity. His public activity was first and foremost about the new covenant.

 

To whom did Jesus sacrifice his life?

Det kan undre, at dygtige forskere som Bultmann og Crossan ikke holder sig for gode til at fremføre sådanne indvendinger, vi her har set.It is surprising for us that skilled scholars as Bultmann and Crossan are not being above making such objections as we have seen. Men de har følt sig tvunget til at komme med alle de indvendinger, de kunne finde, fordi der er noget åbenlyst historisk usandsynligt i den paulinske overlevering om indstiftelsen af den nye pagt. But they have felt compelled to come up with all the objections they could find, because there is something obviously historically unlikely in the Pauline tradition of the instituting of the new covenant.

Når Paulus skriver til menigheden i Korinth, at Jesus er død for deres synder, så kan Jesus aldrig selv have sagt det.When Paul writes to the church in Corinth that Jesus died for their sins, it is obvious that Jesus may never have said that.Menigheden i Korinth består nemlig af ikke-jøder såvel som jøder. The Church in Corinth was composed of non-Jews as well as Jews. Da Jesus uddelte brød og vin ved bordet den nat i Jerusalem, var der kun jøder ved bordet. When Jesus distributed bread and wine at the table that night in Jerusalem, there were only Jews at the table. Alle disciplene, der fulgte ham var jøder. All the disciples, who followed him, were Jews.

Ifølge Matthæusevangeliet (15:24) skulle Jesus have afvist at hjælpe en ikke-jødisk kvinde med ordene: “ Jeg er ikke sendt til andre end til de fortabte får af Israels hus.” Det er historisk sandsynligt, at Jesus havde denne holdning, ellers ville de kristne, der nedskrev evangelierne, ikke have haft nogen grund til at skrive det.According to Matthew (15:24) Jesus had refused to help a non-Jewish woman with the words: "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." It is historically likely that Jesus had this attitude; otherwise the Christians who wrote the gospels would have had no reason to write it. We think oTvært imod, fordi mange i deres menigheder var ikke-jøder.n the contrary, because many members of their congregations were non-Jews.Dette argument bygger på et tredje historisk kriterium for vurdering af kildetekster. This argument is based on a historical third criterion for evaluation of source texts. Kriteriet går ud på, at forhold, på den tid teksterne er skrevet, sandsynliggør om det fortidige, teksten omhandler, er historisk. The criterion is based on facts at the time the texts were written. These facts contradict what is written in the text about the past.

Det er således et centralt spørgsmål for forståelsen af kristendommens tilblivelse at afklare, hvem Jesus havde til bords, den nat, da han tog brødet og vinen og sagde, at dette er mit legeme - dette er mit blod - den nye pagts blod.Thus, a key issue for understanding the origin of the gospel is to clarify who were at the table with Jesus on the night when he took the bread and wine and said that this is my body - this is my blood - the new covenant of blood.

 

The Twelve

De synoptiske evangelier beretter samstemmende, at det natlige måltid var selve påskemåltidet den påskehøjtid, Jesus blev henrettet.The concurrences of the synoptic gospels tell us that the nightly meal was the Passover meal on the Passover when Jesus was executed. Markus skriver indledningsvis: First, Markus writes:

“Og den første dag under de usyrede brøds fest, da man slagtede påskelammet, spurgte hans disciple ham: “Hvor vil du have, at vi skal gå hen og forberede påskemåltidet til dig?” (Markus 14: 12)"And the first day of the Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed, his disciples said to him:" Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the Passover? "(Mark 14:12).

Following this, Jesus giver efterfølgende anvisninger til at forberede et påskemåltid, hvor kun De tolv er inviteret med.Jesus gives instructions on how to prepare a Passover meal only for The Twelve and himself. Det er ganske usædvanligt ifølge de jødiske traditioner. It is quite unusual, according to Jewish tradition.Påskemåltidet var og er ikke alene et måltid for familie og venner; men også for naboer og fremmede jøder. Passover was then and is now not only a meal for family and friends, but also for neighbors and strangers within the Jewish community.Påskemåltidet er i den jødiske tradition ikke et måltid for et lukket selskab. Passover is in the Jewish tradition, not a meal for a closed company.Det påskemåltid, Jesus denne påske lod forberede, var kun for De tolv og ham selv. The Passover meal this Easter that Jesus has prepared for him was only for the twelve and him. Det var altså ikke noget helt almindeligt påskemåltid.It was not exactly an ordinary Passover meal.Hvorfor ikke? Why not?

Ifølge de synoptiske evangelier var dette påskemåltid specielt, fordi Jesus under måltidet indstiftede den nye pagt.According to the synoptic gospels, this Passover meal was special because during the meal, Jesus instituted the new covenant. I overensstemmelse med  den gammeltestamentlige religion indstiftede Jesus den nye pagt  for hele det israelitiske folk. Det vil sige med Israels tolv stammer. In accordance with the Old Testament religion, Jesus instituted the new covenant for the entire Jewish people that are to say for Israel's twelve tribes. Selvom der på Jesus´ tid kun var to stammer tilbage i Israel, så havde Jesus alligevel udpeget De tolv til at repræsentere hele Israel.Although in Jesus' time there were only two tribes in Israel, Jesus had appointed The Twelve to represent the whole of Israel.

Vi finder to omstændigheder i den paulinske overlevering, der peger på påskemåltidet, som det måltid Jesus anvendte til pagtstiftelse.We find two facts in the Pauline tradition which point at that Passover to be the meal which Jesus used to institute the new covenant. For det første taler Paulus om et natligt måltid. Firstly, Paul speaks about a late evening meal. Påskemåltidet er netop et natligt måltid. For det næste taler Paulus om en pagtstiftelse, som er for hele folket. De tolv repræsenterede hele folket Israel og var særligt udvalgt til at dele påskemåltidet med Jesus. Passover is just a late evening meal. Secondly, Paul speaks of a covenant which is for the whole people. The Twelve represented the entire people of Israel and were specifically selected to share Passover with Jesus.

Men ikke alene omstændigheder sandsynliggør, at de synoptiske evangeliers beretning er historisk. Der er nemlig også en teologisk forbindelse mellem påskemåltidet og den nye pagt, som bliver understreget af Jesus ved indstiftelsen af pagten under påskemåltidet.But not only have the Passover circumstances made it probable that the synoptic gospels report is historic, there is also a theological connection between Passover and the new covenant, which is emphasized by Jesus when he institutes the covenant during Passover.

 

Jewish Passover theologyPasover

The context of the Passover feast is the Old Testament story about Abraham, Isaac and Jacob's descendants, who were slaves in Egypt, when God called Moses to free them from slavery. The demand for their release was rejected by King Pharaoh.Kong Farao var afvisende på trods af , at Egypten hjemsøgtes af plager. King Pharaoh was dismissive, despite the fact that Egypt was afflicted with plagues. ThePlagerne var Guds straf for ulydighed. plagues were God's punishment for disobedience.Den sidste af de ti plager blev den afgørende. The last of the ten plagues was decisive:

“Dette siger Herren: Ved midnat går jeg midt gennem Egypten."Thus says the Lord: About midnight I will go out through Egypt.Så skal alle førstefødte i Egypten dø, lige fra den førstefødte hos Farao, som sidder på troen, til den førstefødte hos trælkvinden, som sidder ved kværnen.” (2. Mosebog 11: 4-5) Every firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on his throne to the firstborn of the female slave who is behind the handmill, "(Exodus 11: 4-5).

Ifølge Sinajpagten og Abrahams pagt med Gud skal børnene straffes, når fædrene er ulydige og misligholder pagten.According to the Mosaic covenant and Abraham's covenant with God, the children will be punished when fathers are disobedient and break the Law.Derimod skal fædrene velsignes med børn, børnebørn og oldebørn, især drengebørn til slægtens udbredelse, hvis de er lydige mod Gud. Drengebørn står for slægtens fremtid. In contrast, fathers are blessed with children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, especially boys, if they are obedient to God. Boys are the future of the race, Især den førstefødte dreng, der har en særlig status i familienespecially the first-born son who has a special status within the family.

Den største straf, der gives for ulydighed og misligholdelse af pagten, er den, hvor Gud tager den største velsignelse, den førstefødte søn tilbage.The greatest punishment given for disobedience and breaking the Law is the death of the first born son.Påskens budskab er, at de jødiske slaver i Egypten kunne undgå at miste deres førstefødte sønner, hvis de slagtede et lam, ofrede dele af det som brændoffer og smurte lammets blod på husets to dørstolper og overligger inden midnat. The Easter message is that the Jewish slaves in Egypt could avoid losing their first-born sons if they slaughtered a lamb. Before midnight they should sacrifice parts of the lamb as a burnt offering and smear the lamb's blood on two doorposts and the crossbar of the door to the home.

“Ingen af jer må gå ud af sit hus, før det bliver morgen."None of you shall go outside the door of your house until morning.Når Herren går gennem Egypten for at slå dem ned og ser blodet på overliggeren og de to dørstolper, vil Herren springe den dør over. Han vil ikke lade ødelæggeren gå ind i jeres huse og slå jer ned. For the Lord will pass through to strike down the Egyptians; when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over that door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you down.Dette skal I overholde som en forordning for jer og jeres børn til evig tid.” You shall observe this rite as a perpetual ordinance for you and your children" (2. Mosebog 12:22-(Exodus 12:22-24).

Jesus valgte således at indstifte den nye pagt i forbindelse med et ritual, der satte Sinajpagten og Abrahams pagt ud af kraft.Jesus chose to institute the new covenant in connection with a ritual that put the Mosaic covenant and Abraham's covenant out of power.Han kunne have valgt anderledes. He could have chosen differently.Jøderne havde flere forskellige højtider i løbet af året, hvor de på Jesus´ tid valfartede til Jerusalem for at fejre festlighederne i templet. Jesus kunne for så vidt have valgt at vandre til Jerusalem med sine tilhængere til andre højtider end påsken. In time of Jesus, the Jews had several festivals throughout the year in which they made pilgrimages to Jerusalem to celebrate the festivities in the temple. Jesus could have chosen to walk to Jerusalem with his followers at other holidays than Easter.Men han valgte netop påskefesten for at understrege formålet med sit virke. But he chose Passover to emphasize the purpose of his public activities.

Jøderne kunne med det ofrede lam og lammets blod frikøbe hvert førstefødt drengebarn.Jews could ransom every first born male child with the sacrificed lamb and the lamb's blood.Men jøderne har ikke frikøbt deres førstefødte drenge én gang for alle. But the Jews did not ransom their first-born boys once and for all. Hvert år til påskehøjtiden må de gentage ritualet med ofringen af et lam og smøre lammets blod på husets to dørstolper og overligger. Every Passover, they must repeat the ritual with the sacrifice of a lamb and the smearing of lamb's blood on the two doorposts and lintel of their houses.

The Ofringen skal gentages, fordi jøderne skylder Gud deres førstefødte med befrielsen fra slaveriet i Egypten.sacrifice must be repeated. The Jews owe their first-born sons to God because of their liberation from slavery in Egypt.Kun hvis forordningen ikke overholdes, kan Gud kræve de førstefødte drenges liv, som betaling for befrielsen. If this regulation is not fulfilled, however God can require the lives of first-born sons as payment for liberation.

Det er åbenlyst, at påskemåltidet var teologisk velegnet til indstiftelse af den nye pagt med brødet og vinen.It is obvious that the Passover was invested with the theological ideal of the new covenant with the bread and wine.

Dette har dog ikke afholdt nogle religionshistorikere og enkelte protestantiske teologer fra at komme med indvendinger.However, this has not deterred some historians of religion and some Protestant theologians from making objections.F.eks. The American Paula Fredriksen of Boston calls attention to the later written gospel according to John. There isn´t a word in this gospel about the new covenant or the Passover meal. P. Fredriksen: “Jesus of Nazareth – king of the Jews,” New York 2000.

Ligesom John D. Crossan henviste til det senere skrift Didake, som ikke omtalte Jesus´ offer i nadverens takkebøn, på samme måde henviser Paula Fredriksen til det senere Johannesevangelium for manglende omtale.As John D. Crossan referred to the later written Didake, which did not mention Jesus' sacrifice in the thanksgiving prayer of the sacrament; in the same way Paula Fredriksen refers to the later gospel according to John with its absence of words about the new covenant and the Passover meal.Disse forskere tilsidesætter således væsentlige historiske kriterier, når de tillægger det, der ikke står skrevet i langt yngre enkeltstående kildeskrifter, større vægt i spørgsmålet om historisk sandsynlighed end det, der faktisk står skrevet i de ældste overleveringer fra flere forskellige kilder. Both researchers override essentially historic criteria when they attach importance to texts, which are written in much younger single sources. They bring more emphasis on the historical probability of latter written sources, than texts from the oldest traditions written in several different sources.

I Johannesevangeliet skyldes den manglende omtale af indstiftelsen og påskemåltidet en offerteologi, der er særlig netop for det evangelium.In the Gospel of John the lack of mention of the new covenant and the Passover meal is due to a theology that is special just for this gospel.I evangeliets begyndelse proklamerer Johannes Døber, at Jesus er Guds lam. Det refererer til Jesus som påskelammet. In the beginning of the gospel John the Baptist proclaims, that Jesus is the Lamb of God. It refers to Jesus as the Passover lamb.I evangeliets senere beskrivelse af påskeugen, hvor Jesus bliver henrettet, flyttes Jesus´ korsfæstelse til den dag i ugen, hvor påskelammet slagtes. In the later description of Easter Week, where Jesus is executed, Jesus' crucifixion is moved to the day of the week, on which the Passover lamb is slaughtered. Fredriksen finder det således historisk sandsynligt, at Jesus døde på korset på det tidspunkt, hvor påskelammet rituelt ofres oppe i templet. Fredriksen considers it historically likely that Jesus died on the cross at the minute when the Passover Lamb is sacrificed in the temple. Hvor statistisk sandsynlig er sådan en timing? We may ask: What is the statistic probability for such timing?

Ved at flytte henrettelsen af Jesus´ frem til dagen for forberedelsen af påskemåltidet, er evangelisten Johannes afskåret fra at omtale Jesus´ indstiftelse af den ny pagt ved det senere påskemåltid.By moving the execution of Jesus back in time to the day of preparation for Passover, the evangelist John is precluded from mentioning the instituting of the new covenant at the later Easter meal.

Johannesevangeliets tilpasning af historiske begivenheder til en særlig teologisk forkyndelse er ikke enestående.John adjustment of historical events to a particular theological preaching is not unique. Den måde at forkynde på forekommer også i de øvrige evangelier og hos Paulus.This way of preaching is present in the other gospels and in Paul´s letters as well.Men intet tyder på, at de synoptiske evangelier har gjort noget tilsvarende i deres overlevering om indstiftelsen af den nye pagt ved påskemåltidet med De tolv. However nothing suggests that the synoptic gospels have done something similar in their tradition concerning the instituting of the new covenant at Passover with The Twelve. Derimod synes Paulus at have tilpasset overleveringen om påskemåltidet til sin teologi, så indstiftelsen af den nye pagt også har gyldighed for ikke-jøder. On the other hand, Paul seems to have adapted the tradition of Passover to his theology, so that the new covenant is also valid for non-Jews.

Her kan det tredje kriterium igen tages i brug med følgende argument: Det er usandsynligt, at forfatterne til de synoptiske evangelier opdigtede beretningen om indstiftelsen af den nye pagt i forbindelse med et helt specielt påskemåltid, hvor Jesus kun spiser sammen med de tolv.Here the third criterion may again be put into use with the following argument: It is unlikely that the authors of the synoptic gospels made up a fictitious report about the institution of the new covenant in connection with a special Passover meal, because Jesus only ate the Passover meal with The Twelve. Ikke alene fordi forræderen Judas var blandt de tolv, men også fordi alle andre var udelukket. Not only because the traitor Judas was among The Twelve, but also because everyone else was excluded.

 

2. Conclusion

Der kan ikke være begrundet tvivl om, at Jesus så sin død og dermed sit offentlige virke som et jødisk nationalt anliggende .It is without reasonable doubt that Jesus saw his death and all his public work as a Jewish national affair. He instituted the new covenant with The Twelve alone, so they represented the twelve Israelites tribes.Når han ville ofre sit liv for en ny pagt med Gud, så var det en ny pagt for det udvalgte folk Israel. When Jesus sacrificed his life for a new covenant with God, then it was a new covenant for the chosen people of Israel.

Jesus didn´t see his death as a sacrifice for all people, but a sacrifice for Jews only.

Inden vi nærmere undersøger, hvordan vor kristne opfattelse af Jesus´ død som et offer for alle mennesker kommer til at afløse Jesus´ egen, vil vi søge en dybere forståelse af hans tankegang ved at fremhæve det i den gammeltestamentlige religion, Jesus levede og døde for.Before we examine more closely how our Christian understanding of Jesus death as a sacrifice for all people comes in to replace Jesus' own understanding, we will seek a deeper understanding of his thinking by highlighting it in the Old Testament religion Jesus lived and died for.

 

 

The old covenant

Jøderne anser sig for et udvalgt folk.Jews consider themselves a chosen people. Udvælgelsen sker ifølge den jødiske tradition med to aftaler. The selection is, according to Jewish tradition, formulated in two contracts. Først har de indgået Abrahams pagt.(#11) Aftalen går i sin enkelthed ud på, at Gud velsigner Abraham med efterkommere så talrige som himlens stjerner, hvis Abraham til gengæld er lydige overfor Gud. First, the Jews have concluded the Abraham covenant. The Agreement is in its simplicity, that God blesses Abraham with descendants as numerous as the stars in heaven, if Abraham is obedient to God.

Dernæst har jøderne indgået Sinajpagten, som udbygger Abrahams pagt.Next, the Jews have concluded the Mosaic covenant, which is built upon the Abraham covenant. Sinajpagten præciserer Guds bud i Moseloven og lover ikke alene Guds velsignelse i form af utallige efterkommere, men også i form af landet, der flyder med mælk og honning, altså landet Palæstina. The Mosaic covenant clarifies God's commandments in the Mosaic law and promise God's blessings not only in the form of numerous descendants, but also in terms of a country flowing with milk and honey, known as the land Palestine.

Betingelserne for den gamle pagt udtrykkes i flere centrale tekster i Det gamle Testamente.The conditions of the old covenant are expressed in several key texts in the Old Testament. F.eks. i forbindelse med det første af de ti bud i Sinajpagten.  Here in connection with the first of the Ten Commandments in the Mosaic covenant:Der står i 2. ExodusMose 20:5-6.

“Jeg straffer fædres skyld på børn, børnebørn og oldebørn af dem, der hader mig; men dem, der elsker mig og holder mine befalinger, vil jeg vise godhed i tusind slægtled.”"I am punishing children for the iniquity of fathers, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments."

Den gammeltestamentlige fortælling om Abraham, der skulle ofre sønnen Isak på Guds befaling, udtrykker alvoren i den gamle pagt.The Old Testament story about Abraham, who intends to sacrifice his son Isaac, because of God's commandment, expresses the seriousness of the old covenant. Abraham befales at ofre sin søn Isak på et bjerg, som i den jødiske tradition er tempelbjerget i Jerusalem. Hvis Abraham ofrer sin eneste søn, mister han muligheden for at føre sin slægt videre. Abraham is ordered to sacrifice his son Isaac on the mountain, which in the Jewish tradition is the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. If Abraham sacrifices his only son, he loses the ability to lead his family further.Ligeledes, hvis Abraham er ulydig og undlader at ofre Isak, så vil Gud straffe ham ved selv at tage sønnens liv tilbage. Historien ender med at understrege den gamle pagts grundtanke. Similarly, if Abraham is insubordinate and fails to sacrifice Isaac, God will punish him by taking his son's life back. The story ends by stressing the basic idea of the ancient covenant. Er du lydig imod Guds befaling, så velsignes du med søn, sønnesønner osv. If you are obedient to God's commandments, then you are blessed with sons, grandsons, etc.

Den gamle pagt er Guds pagt med mænd.The old covenant is God's covenant with men only.Familien og slægten var mandens familie og slægt. Family and genus were the husband's family and relatives.Pagten gør mænd til fædre, der velsignes med efterkommere. The covenant makes men fathers who are blessed with descendants.Det vil sige drengebørn. That means boys.Den største velsignelse er en velskabt førstefødt dreng. Den største straf er derfor at forblive barnløs eller miste sin førstefødte dreng. The greatest blessing is a handsome first born son. The greatest punishment is to remain childless or lose the firstborn son.

 

3. Conclusion

According to the old covenant fathers and sons aren´t two persons but one person in relation to God. The fathers have the responsibility for obedience to God’s will, but the sons have to take the punishment if the fathers are disobedient.

 

 

The new covenant

I Det gamle Testamente omtales den nye pagt i de profetiske bøger.In the Old Testament the new covenant is mentioned in the prophetic books. These prophetic scriptures are the primary context for the understanding of the public work and the death of Jesus.Disse bøger er skrevet i opposition til præsteskabet ved templet og kongemagten i Jerusalem. The prophetic books are written in opposition to the priesthood at the temple in Jerusalem and the monarchy.Profeterne fremstår i bøgerne som Guds repræsentanter, der påpeger magthavernes misligholdelse af den gamle pagt. Prophets appear in the books as God's representatives, and they accuse those in power in Jerusalem.Profeterne advarer mod følgerne af præsteskabets og kongemagtens ulydighed. The prophets warn the priesthood and the royal power against disobedience to God´s Law.De advarer mod Guds vrede. They makes prophesies about the wrath of God.

Påskefortællingen om jødernes udfrielse fra slaveriet i Egypten udtrykker klart, hvordan jøderne forestillede sig følgerne af Guds vrede.In the time of Jesus, the Jews had a clear understanding of God´s wrath. The Passover story of Jewish deliverance from slavery in Egypt expresses clearly how Jews imagined the consequences of God's wrath.Guds vrede tager velsignelserne fra dem. God's wrath takes his blessings from them. The greatest blessingHelt som Guds vrede tog velsignelserne fra Egypterne med de ti plager. from God is the first born son.

Da Jesus levede, var Johannes Døber(#12) en profetskikkelse i tradition med profetbøgerne.When Jesus lived, John the Baptist was a prophet figure in the tradition of the Old Testament prophetic books.Selvom han ifølge overleveringen var af præsteslægt, så stod han i opposition til præsteskabet i Jerusalem og kongemagten i Galilæa. According to tradition, although he was out of priestly family, John the Baptist stood in opposition to the priesthood in Jerusalem and the monarchy in Galilee.Han krævede en bedre livsførelse af alle jøder, og truede med Guds kommende vrede. Således kritiserede Døberen visekonge Herodes Antipas i Galilæa for dennes livsførelse. He demanded a better life for all Jews, and threatened those in power with God's coming wrath. John the Baptist criticized King Herod Antipas in Galilee for his way of life. En kritik, der førte til Døberens henrettelse. Han tilbød en religiøs renselse i form af dåb med Guds tilgivelse. Johannes Døber forestillede sig, at Gud kunne formildes, hvis jøderne besluttede sig for en bedre livsførelse og lod sig døbe af ham. His criticism led to his execution. He offered a religious cleansing in the form of baptism with God's forgiveness. John the Baptist imagined that God would be appeased, if the Jews decided to live a more righteous life and were baptized by him.

“Og kom ikke og sig ved jer selv: Vi har Abraham til fader!"Do not begin to say to yourselves, “We have Abraham as our ancestor.” For jeg siger jer: Gud kan opvække børn til Abraham af stenene dér.” (Lukas 3:8) For I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham."(Luke 3:8)

Dermed sagde Johannes Døber, at den gamle pagt ikke var nogen redning.Thus John the Baptist said that the old covenant was not a rescue.Guds vrede kunne kun formildes ved omvendelse og dåb. God's wrath could only be appeased by repentance and baptism.

Det anses for historisk, at Jesus lod sig døbe af Johannes Døber.It is considered historically accurate that Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. Hvilket forklarer, hvordan bondedrengen Jesus, der var søn af en fattig håndværker fra en afsides landsby, blev i stand til at udfordre de religiøse og politiske ledere i landet. His baptism explains how a peasant boy Jesus, who was the son of a poor tradesman from a remote village, was able to challenge the religious and political leaders in the country.Jesus´ offentlige virke var meget afhængigt af Johannes Døbers. Jesus' public activities were highly dependent on John the Baptist. Historically, it isI eftertiden har kristne omtalt Johannes Døber som forløber til Jesus. unlikely that John the Baptist was a forerunner to Jesus. Historisk set er det snarere sådan, at Jesus var Johannes Døbers efterfølger.It is rather the case that Jesus was John the Baptist's successor.

Johannes Døber blev afbrudt i sit offentlige virke med tilfangetagelse og henrettelse.John the Baptist was interrupted in his public work when he was captured and executed.Hans disciple må have opfattet Døberens skæbne som tegn på Guds vrede. Det var åbenlyst ikke nok, at jøderne lod sig døbe, for at undgå Guds vrede. The disciples of the Baptist must have seen his fate as a sign of God's wrath. It was obviously not enough that Jews were baptized to avoid the wrath of God.Landet Israel var besat af romerne. The land of Israel was occupied by the Romans.Israelitterne var besat af dæmoner. Israelites were obsessed with demons.De stod i fare for at blive et slavefolk igen. They stood in danger of becoming a slave people again.Der skulle mere til end dåb til syndernes forladelse. The situation was worse than John the Baptist´s activities could overcome.

Indstiftelsen af den nye pagt viser, at Jesus tog konsekvensen af sin mesters skæbne.The fact that Jesus instituted the new covenant shows us that Jesus took the consequences of his master's fate.Han forkyndte den nye pagt med sine helbredelser, og han ville ofres for hele folket Israel. In his public work, Jesus preached the new covenant with his healings, and he wanted to be sacrificed on behalf of the entire people of Israel.

Lad os derfor se nærmere på de gammeltestamentlige forudsætninger for Jesus´ offentlige virke og hans tydning af sin død.Let us therefore look at the Old Testament preconditions of Jesus' public work and of his death.Der findes et enkelt sted i Det gamle Testamentes profetiske bøger, hvor der ved navns nævnelse skrives om Den nye pagt. There is one place in the prophetic books of the Old Testament, where the new covenant is mentioned by name.Det er i Jeremias´ bog kapitel 31: It is in Jeremiah 31:31-32a.

“Der skal komme dage, siger Herren, da jeg slutter en ny pagt med Israels hus og med Judas hus, en pagt, der ikke er som den, jeg sluttede med deres fædre, den dag jeg tog dem ved hånden og førte dem ud af Egypten.” (Vers 31+32a)"The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt. "

Det nye ved den nye pagt udtrykkes i en billedrig kritik af den gamle pagt.The novelty of the new covenant is expressed in a metaphorical critique of the old covenant.

“I de dage skal man ikke mere sige: Fædrene spiste sure druer, og sønnerne får stumpe tænder."In those days they shall no longer say: The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the son´s teeth are set on edge.Nej, enhver skal dø for sin egen synd; ethvert menneske, der spiser sure druer, får selv stumpe tænder.” (vers 29 + 30) But all shall die for their own sins; the teeth of everyone who eats sour grapes shall be set on edge." (v. 29 + 30).

Billedet af fædrene, der spiser sure druer, og sønnerne, der får rådne tænder, er kritik af den måde israelitterne straffes på, når de overtræder den gamle pagt.The image of fathers eating sour grapes, and sons, who get rotten teeth, is a major critic of the way the Israelites are punished when they violate the old covenant.Den gamle pagt var en aftale mellem Israels fædre og Gud, ikke mellem Gud og de enkelte jøder. The old covenant was an agreement between Israel's founding fathers and God, not between God and the individual Jews.

In the prophetic books  Der findes ikke i de profetiske bøger nogen nærmere angivelse af, hvordan den nye pagt skal oprettes. Der står således heller ikke noget om, at den kræver et offer.there are no guidelines for how the new covenant would to be instituted. Thus nothing is written about a sacrifice.Men den gamle pagt afløses ikke uden videre af den nye pagt. But the old covenant is not readily replaced by the new covenant. I den forbindelse må der gøres regnskab efter den gamle pagts anvisninger, når der ikke findes nogen nærmere forordning af noget andet. In the context of the Old Testament covenants, there must be reckoning within the Law of the old covenant.

Da Jesus spiste påskemåltidet den sene aften før sin tilfangetagelse, var han kommet til den overbevisning, at han som Davids søn (han var af kong Davids slægt) måtte tage straffen for fædrenes ulydighed og misligholdelse af den gamle pagt, før den nye pagt kan træde i kraft.When Jesus instituted the new covenant as he did, he had come to the conviction that he, as a genetic son of King David, had to take the punishment for disobedient fathers who had failed to fulfill the old covenant.

 

4. Conclusion

The new covenant isn´t an agreement between the fathers of Israel and God like the old covenant is. The new covenant is an agreement between every single Israelite and God.

 

Children of God

When the new covenant changes the Israelites´ relationship with God, it also changes the relationship between fathers, mothers, sons, daughters and everybody else. Jesus explains this change in relationship with one single word: Abba.   

 

Den ældste kilde, hvor Gud omtales som far er de paulinske breve til Romerne og Galaterne:The oldest source where God is referred to as father is the Pauline letters to the Romans and Galatians:

”I har fået den ånd, som giver barnekår, og i den råber vi: Abba, Fader! Ånden selv vidner sammen med vores ånd om, at vi er Guds børn.” (Rom. 8:15-16 = Gal. 4:6-7). "When we cry:”Abba! Father”, it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God." (Romans 8:15-16 = Gal. 4: 6-7).

Grunden til at der i denne tekst af Paulus forekommer det aramæiske ord: Abba, kan næppe forklares anderledes, end fordi Jesus talte aramæisk og oprindeligt omtalte Gud med netop dette ord.The reason that we find the Aramaic word: Abba, in this text by Paul, can hardly be explained otherwise than because Jesus spoke Aramaic and originally referred to God with this particular word.

I evangelierne finder vi hos Matthæus og Lukas en tradition for at Jesus lærte sine disciple at bede til Gud med ordene: Vor Far eller Fader vor .In the Gospels we find in Matthew and Luke a tradition that Jesus taught his disciples to pray to God with the words: Our Father.Det er ret enestående, at Jesus skulle have lært sine disciple en bøn. Der findes ikke andre eksempler i de kristne overleveringer på, at Jesus lære sine disciple bønner, hymner eller bekendelser. It is quite unique that Jesus would have taught his disciples a prayer. There are no other examples in the Christian tradition that Jesus teaches his disciples prayers, hymns or confessions. Dernæst er Fadervor overleveret i to forskellige versioner, som kunne tyde på at forskellige grupper har overleveret deres egen tradition. We find the Lord's Prayer delivered in two different versions, which could indicate that different groups have passed down their own traditions.Alt sammen med til, at mange historikere og teologer finder det overordentligt sandsynligt, at Jesus faktisk lærte sine disciple en bøn, der begynder med Fader vor eller Fader! om man vil. Many historians and theologians consider it extremely likely that Jesus actually taught his disciples a prayer that begins with the words Our Father or Father.

Lukasevangeliet overleverer den korteste formulering af Fadervor.Luke conveys the shortest formula of Our Father. Det er højst sandsynligt den oprindelige bøn fra Jesus, fordi den længere udgave af bønnen hos Matthæus indeholder begreberne ”himmel” og ”jord” i tråd med netop dette evangeliums omformulering af Faderens kongerige til ”himmeriget”. Det er næppe begreber Jesus benyttede sig af, fordi hans offentlige virke var specielt for jøder. It is most likely the original prayer of Jesus, because the longer version of the prayer found in Matthew includes the concepts of "heaven" and "earth" in line with Matthew’s reformulation of Father´s kingdom to "kingdom of heaven." These are hardly concepts Jesus took advantage of, because his public activities were specifically for Jews.Et nationalt budskab, ikke et universelt. His message was a national message, not a universal one.

”Fader!"Father! Helliget blive dit navn, komme dit kongerige, giv os hver dag vort daglige brød, og forlad os vore synder, for også vi forlader selv enhver, som er skyldig over for os, og led os ikke i fristelse.” (Luk. 11:2b-4) Hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial." (Luke 11: 2b-4).

Gud overtager fædrenes hidtidige rolle.God takes over the role of fathers past.Hvor Gud under den gamle pagt var en patron, som de jødiske fædre havde en aftale med, så er Gud under den nye pagt jødernes far. Under the Old covenant God was a patron with an agreement with the Jewish fathers. Under the new covenant God is father of all the Jews.Gud adopterer dem som sine egne børn. God adopts them as his own children.

 

5. Conclusion  When

When all the Jews are Gods children, they will never more be held accountable for their fathers disobedience. God as father does not disobey his own will. The new covenant sets every single Jew free of the patriarchal obligation to pater familias. The new covenant gives everyone responsibility only for his own deeds, thoughts and feelings.

It is a major opportunity for everybody in the Jewish society. The fathers lose their dominating influence on women, children and other men in their families. The fathers must become brothers with everybody, because children of God are all siblings.

 

The Gospel: Jesus død for vores synder!Jesus died for our sins!

How did the Hvordan fremkom det kristne budskab, at Jesus ikke alene ofrede sig for jøderne; men også for alle os, der ikke er af jødisk herkomstHow did Gospel emerge that Jesus not only sacrificed himself for the Jews, but also for all of us, who are not of Jewish descent?

Selvom nogle tekster giver indtryk af, at Jesus selv så frem til, at han efter sin død skulle genopstå, så er det historisk set ret usandsynligt.Although some texts give the impression that Jesus looked forward to his own resurrection, it is historically quite unlikely. Hvis Jesus virkelig havde forventet, at han efter sin død skulle opstå fra de døde, så havde han ingen grund til i Getsemane have at blive overvældet af angstens blodige sved, end sige på korset fortvivlet at sige: ”Min Gud, hvorfor har du forladt mig?” Hvis Jesus havde forventet, at han skulle genopstå, så var hans død ikke noget offer; men nærmere forventet som et par dages søvn. If Jesus really had expected that after his death he would be resurrected, then he had no reason to be overwhelmed by fear and bloody sweat in the Garden of Gethsemane, much less on the Cross where he was so desperate as to say: "My God,  my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Mark. 15:34). If Jesus had expected himself to reappear, his death would not be a sacrifice.

Clearly s Kilderne viser desuden tydeligt, at Jesus´ disciple efter hans henrettelse var fortvivlede og rådvilde. De var endog på vej hver til sit, og kunne ikke tro, at Jesus var stået op af graven.ources show that Jesus' disciples were despondent and desperate after his execution. They were even on their way home, and could not believe that Jesus had risen from the grave.

Historien om, hvordan en forfølger af de første kristne omvendte sig til kristendommen, er historien om, hvordan det fuldstændig kom bag på Paulus, at den døde og begravede Jesus viste sig for ham.The story of how a persecutor of the early Christians converted to Christianity is the story of how it totally overwhelmed Paul that the dead and buried Jesus appeared to him. Paulus skriver i sit 1.Paul writes in his 1stbrev til menigheden i Korinth: ”Jeg overleverede jer nemlig først og fremmes, hvad jeg selv har modtaget: at Kristus døde for vore synder efter skrifterne, at han blev begravet, at han opstod på den tredje dag efter skrifterne, og at han blev set af Kefas og dernæst af alle De tolv. letter to the Corinthian´s:

"I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn have received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then the twelve.Dernæst blev han set af over fem hundrede brødre på én gang, de fleste af dem er endnu i live, men nogle er sovet hen. Dernæst blev han set af Jakob (hans bror), siden igen af alle apostlene. Men sidst af alle blev han set af et misfoster som mig.” (1. kor. 15:3-8). Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James (his brother), then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me." (1. Cor. 15:3-8).

As far as we know, Dette er så vidt vides det ældste kristne vidnesbyrd, der findes.this is the oldest Christian testimony in existence. Ikke alene er overleveringen nedskrevet samtidig med nadvercitatet fra Jesus i første Korintherbrev. Det er også en overlevering fra de første kristne, før Paulus sluttede sig til dem. Not only was it written down at the same time as the sacrament quotation from Jesus in Corinthians1, it is also a tradition from the early Christians, from before Paul joined them. Paulus hæfter sit eget vidnesbyrd på enden af den overlevering, han har fået. Paul attaches his own testimony to the end of the tradition he has received.Han tilføjer: Men sidst af alle … He adds: "But last of all ... “

Paulus´ tilføjelse gør overleveringen til et førstehåndsvidnesbyrd om, at den døde Jesus blev set i live efter sin begravelse.Paul's testimony delivers first-hand evidence that Jesus was seen alive after his funeral.Disse møder med den døde og begravede Jesus gav anledning til forkyndelsen af hans opstandelse. Hans opstandelse siges at være på den tredje dag, fordi den dag fandt disciple, at hans grav var tom, som overleveret i evangelierne. These meetings with the already dead and buried Jesus gave rise to the service of his resurrection. His resurrection is said to be on the third day, because it was the day where disciples found, his tomb was empty, as stated in the Gospels.

Here Vi står altså her med et brev fra en mand, som skriver, at han har mødt Jesus fra Nazaret efter at denne var død og begravet.we are with a letter from a man who writes that he met Jesus of Nazareth after Jesus was dead and buried.Han skriver, at Jesus er opstået fra de døde, at Jesus har overvundet døden. He writes that Jesus is raised from the dead, that Jesus has overcome death.

De første kristne inklusiv Paulus er overbevist om, at Gud har ladet Jesus opstå fra de døde, så hans offerdød ikke alene er betaling for Abraham- og Sinaj-pagtens fædres ulydighed; men også er betaling for urfaderen Adams ulydighed i Edens have.The first Christians, including Paul, were convinced that God had let Jesus rise from the dead. After the resurrection, his followers became convinced that the sacrifice of Jesus was more than payment for the old Covenant, more than payment for the genetic disobedience to God among the fathers of Abraham´s progeny.

The first Christians, including Paul, became Christians at exactly the moment when they believed in their hearts, that Jesus died as a sacrifice for Adam's disobedience to God in The Garden of Eden. They were convinced that Det er de overbevist om, fordi de betragtede døden som en straf for Adams(#13) ulydighed, sådan som vi læser i skabelsesfortællingen i Det gamle Testamentedeath as such is a punishment for the disobedience of the father of mankind, as described in Genesis.

It is core Christianity to believe, that Jesus Christ sacrificed his life, not only for the sons and daughters of Abraham, but indeed for the sons and daughters of Adam. The resurrection of Jesus Christ shows all mankind, that he overcame death for all of us.

The Gospel has come to be: Jesus Christ died for our sins.

 

                      

2.   paper

 

Why was the Gospel of Mark written?
Bent Kim Jepsen, Copyright 2013.
 


There is much published research on the origin of the gospels. Almost all publications concern studies of the gospels mutually. In the 183o s Lachmann and Weisse argued that the gospel of Mark is the earliest written of all known gospels. Before Mark was written, there was only a few Christian letters written by Paul. In these letters Paul unfolds his preaching of the heavenly Christ, who had appeared to him, when he was still persecuting the early Christians. In the following, we respectively compare theological key concepts and descriptions of power relations in Mark and the Pauline letters. As a starting point, we assume that there must be a connection both authoritative and theological showing the context of the origin of Mark.

The heavenly Christ
Paul teaches that the heavenly Christ will soon come again to bring the Christians to heaven. Paul sees the heavenly Christ as the last Adam. In Rom 5 and 1 Cor 15 Paul unfolds his conception of Christ as the last great son of Adam, who by his obedience does it well, as Adam by his disobedience did hurt. For Paul, the risen Jesus is identical to an apocalyptic figure, which he calls "the last Adam". Those who belong to Christ are those who have received the Spirit of Christ: The Holy Spirit as a pledge of the resurrection. For Paul the Christian Gospel is that you have received the Holy Spirit as a pledge of the resurrection, by hearing about Jesus Christ's death and resurrection. "Our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ." Phil 3:20. Paul had a notion that the heavenly Christ would come again in the sky in his own lifetime. 1 Thess 4:17. Paul imagines that the heavenly Christ comes again, just like in the prophecy of Daniel 7: 9-14, for the Son of Man. Paul identifies the resurrected Jesus Christ with two different apocalyptic figures: The Last Adam and the Son of Man.

The earthly Jesus
The gospel is something Paul has personally received from the heavenly Christ, namely "That Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he was buried, and that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures." 1 Cor 15 + Gal 1.  For Paul, the earthly Jesus is dead and gone. The heavenly Christ alone is present in the Spirit. "Even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we knew him no longer in that way." 2 Cor 5:16. Paul makes a sharp distinction between the earthly Jesus and the heavenly Christ. Paul does not see the earthly Jesus as a divine figure. The earthly Jesus was just a man like any other man. Phil 2. For Paul the gospel is solely about the heavenly Christ. He has nothing from the earthly Jesus. He has never met the earthly Jesus. Paul declares that he has references to the Eucharist and the death of Jesus from the heavenly Christ by revelation - not from the Twelve or any earthly man. This sharp distinction between the heavenly Christ and the earthly Jesus led to a theological problem, which Mark gives a solution for. The problem can be expressed briefly: Was it the heavenly Christ or the earthly Jesus who died on the cross? In other words: What will it take for Jesus' death theologically speaking, to be a sacrifice? Should Jesus have lived his life in pure obedience to God? If yes, how can it be an earthly man who was crucified? Paul does not respond to these questions, but as we shall see, Mark makes a response.

The earthly Jesus is the heavenly Christ
In Pauls’ point of view, Jesus Christ was declared to be Son of God by resurrection from the dead. Rome 1:3-4. Jesus is the heavenly Christ after the resurrection. Mark thinks otherwise.  Mark features in with a change by moving this affirmation of Jesus as Son of God back to his baptism by John the Baptist. The entire script is prehistory of the heavenly Christ from baptism until the resurrection. Mark writes it in the title: "The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God." Mark 1:1. The script ends with a reference to his resurrection. It is clearly Mark's intention to solve a major theological problem in the Pauline theology. All of the earthly Jesus´ public ministry from baptism in the Jordan River to Dead on a cross at Golgata is included as part of the heavenly Christ' work. Mark is not the full gospel of the heavenly Christ. It is only the beginning, as Paul had renounced in his preaching. Mark is intended to be an additional corrective to the theology of Paul as preached in his letters. Mark cannot be fully understood without knowledge of the Pauline letters. Mark uses the term gospel in the same way as Paul does in his letters. Mark does not use the concept about his own writing, as writing.
Mark identifies, as Paul does, the heavenly Christ with apocalyptic figures: The Last Adam and Son of Man. His description of the earthly Jesus is, as we shall see, strongly influenced by this identification. However, in such a way that the message, that the earthly Jesus is the last Adam and Daniel's prophecy of Son of man, will be unknown to the public. The crowds, the disciples, the twelve and all, who Jesus approached, is not in Jesus' lifetime aware that he is the last Adam fulfilling the prophecy son of man. Jesus is told to be the only one to hold this knowledge. Only demons can identify him. In other words, it is not a part of Jesus' public ministry, revealing himself as the last Adam and prophecy fulfillment. Mark assumes that the message of the earthly Jesus' public appearance is a completely different message, than the gospel of the heavenly Christ, who shall come again - otherwise it would not be a secret.

The last Adam
In Paul´s opinion the greatest authority of all is the heavenly Christ, who has revealed himself to Paul and selected him as an apostle. It is the heavenly Christ who sends the Spirit as a gift to those, who hear the gospel of the heavenly Christ. In Mark is it the Spirit, who is the greatest authority. Mark 3:29. Just as the heavenly Christ selected Paul, like so the Spirit selected the earthly Jesus at the baptism of John the Baptist. The earthly Jesus gets a revelation of the Spirit and is selected Son of God. After that the earthly Jesus is sent - now as the Son of God - into the wilderness to be tempted by Satan. The temptation in the desert is a mirror image of Adam's temptation in the Garden of Eden. In the Garden of Eden Adam was tempted. And in the wilderness the last Adam rejected Satan's temptations. In this way Mark introduced the earthly Jesus as the last Adam. Mark does not use the term: the last Adam. He uses another term as the first in preaching history. When Mark mentions the last Adam, he uses the term: The Son of The Man / Adams Son. The script of Mark is built on a confession to the earthly Jesus as the Christ. This confession is expressed with the term: The Son of The Man, as a keyword.

The Son of the Man
Mark stresses the importance of this new Christ-confession by letting the earthly Jesus formulate the confession. By this Mark surged to put the authority of the earthly Jesus' behind the idea, that Jesus is the apocalyptic figure, which Paul calls the last Adam. In addition, the term alludes also to the mythical figure of Daniel's prophecy. The specific form: The man / the son refers to Adam / The Last Adam. The reference is determined by the fact that their relationship is defined as father / son understood in a covenant relationship with God, where the son is guilty of his father's disobedience. Ex 20. Man = Adam was disobedient to God. The children of man are punished with death for the disobedience of their father. The son of the man sacrifices himself for his father's disobedience, as the old covenant requires.

Peter and the Twelve
It is particularly striking how Peter and the Twelve, as the Twelve, are mentioned in Mark. When the script refers to the earthly Jesus as the Son of the Man, it always mentioned Peter and the Twelve very hostile. Mark makes a character assassination of the apostle Peter. In Mark Peter is described as an untrustworthy, deceitful and faithless person, who does not have any idea of what Jesus said and did. Peter and the Twelve together, are deprived of all authority in Mark. The schism is about Marks identification of the earthly Jesus with the apocalyptic figures. It is formulated in Mark 8.27. "Who do you say that I am?" This question is the focal point of the entire script. On behalf of the disciples' Peter confesses that Jesus is the Christ. Then Jesus began to teach them that the Son of the Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. Mark 8.31. When Peter opposes this lesson, it is obvious that Mark lets Jesus bite him off with the words: "Get behind me, Satan!" Subsequently, Jesus told Peter that "Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of the Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels." Mark 8.38. In Marks continuation forward to the report on Synedriets conviction of Jesus these ideas are deepened and repeated about the Son of the Man a total of three times. This applies both suffering, death and resurrection prediction and return expectations. During the interrogation, Jesus says that he is - the Son of the Man - is the Christ. Mark 14.62. Then Mark tells that Peter is still ashamed of Jesus and denies him three times. Peter rejects the confession of Christ as the Son of the Man. Peter insists according to Mark on a different understanding of Christ, but nowhere in the script is Peters Christ-confession deepened.
If we see Marks hostility to Peter and the Twelve in conjunction with the script attempting to involve the earthly Jesus in the Pauline preaching of the heavenly Christ, it undeniable raises the question of the time of Mark's genesis. It is unlikely that the script should be written after Peter's death. It must have been written at a time when Mark has found it necessary to express himself as he did. When was it necessary in the Pauline churches to involve the earthly Jesus in the service of the heavenly Christ? When was it necessary to formulate a character assassination of Peter and the Twelve?

Peter and the Twelve in the Pauline letters
Peter and the Twelve attachments to the earthly Jesus is not questioned in anything handed writing. One of the most testified in the church's oldest writings is Jesus' selection of Peter and the Twelve, Jesus' allocation of authority to them as preachers and healers, and their participation in Jesus' institution of the new covenant. Not only has the earthly Jesus chosen Peter and the Twelve. It has the heavenly Christ also, according to Paul 1 Cor 15. Peter and the Twelve not only had a charismatic and institutional authority from the earthly Jesus, but also a charismatic authority from the heavenly Christ in line with Paul. When Mark in addition to questioning their authority, even saw their authority as hostile, it is an expression of an immense conflict between Paul and Mark on one side and Peter with the Twelve on the other side. This discrepancy is also expressed by Paul.
Although Paul had the Jerusalem church support to preach to the Gentiles, it did not keep the Christian Jews away from the Gentile churches. Different preachers and apostles went to the Pauline congregations and preached the gospel with other conditions than Paul. Paul may in his letters again and again emphasize that he is sent by the heavenly Christ, and that what he preaches in one and all, is the message from the heavenly Christ. Implicitly whatever said, it is not from the heavenly Christ. Even though it is preached of Peter or others of the church "Pillars".  Gal 2:9. Paul says in his letters that he has openly put up against Peter. Gal 2:11-21.
The clear impression of the Pauline letters is that Paul does not want to deal with Peter, the Twelve and others who had known the earthly Jesus. He owes them nothing. As an apostle, he has everything from revelations of the heavenly Christ. Paul and his congregations were under strong pressure to adapt to the authority of Peter, the Twelve and others.
It is in this context the genesis of the Gospel of Mark has to be seen. The script is a Pauline countermove to the pressure from the other authorities. The earthly Jesus had to be the heavenly Christ in the way Paul identifies him with the last Adam and prophecy of Daniel.