374

Church of St. Peter 3: After the confession of the Messiah,

Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989

8:27-30, the suffering as a characteristic of the Messiah and of Christians (a heritage from the Jewish-Christian tradition) must be brought home to them, 8:31-9:1, before the transformation of Jesus into the heavenly Messiah can form the climax of this section and of the whole Gospel book up to 16:8.

Mark places the transformation of Jesus, 9:2-13, exactly in the mathematical center of the Gospel and thus shows the importance of this event. Jesus, however, is not flanked by angels, but by figures of the Jewish prehistory, Moses and Elijah.

373

Church of St. Peter 2: The 2nd section begins again with a feeding miracle, 8:1-9.

Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989

with a feeding miracle, 8:1-9, followed by a demand for a sign from the Pharisees, 8:10-13, and the break with Jesus’ opponents.

The turning to the disciples, from 8:27 on, is more detailed this time and culminates in Peter’s confession of the Messiah. Mark underlines the importance of what follows by inserting a healing of the blind (the same happens before the entry into Jerusalem 10:46-52).

372

The tradition of the church of St. Peter: The 1st section varies the theme

Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989

of the triumphant Jesus. The natural wonders of the feeding of the 5,000 and the walk on the water open the narratives, with Jesus’ walk on the water showing his supernatural powers and depriving any natural explanation of the feeding miracle of its justification, 6:30-52.

The subsequent healings by touching the hem of the garment demonstrate Jesus’ special powers, 6:53-56.

The discussion of pure and impure with critical remarks on the formal religiosity of Judaism, 7:1-23, leads to Jesus’ healings in the extra-Jewish area of Tyros and in the Decapolis, 7:24-37. Jesus, according to the point of this 1st section, is sent to the Gentiles as well as to the Jews.

371

Baptist Christians 3: The Baptist Christians want to give every person with Jesus

Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin Wall, Niederkirchner Strasse, 12.11.1989

the courage to start anew through baptism. The people in Jesus’ hometown do not understand that the Jesus they think they know is dead, that Jesus has started a whole new life, they turn away from him, 6:1-6.

The sending of the Twelve shows the radiation of the new teaching, 6:7-13. In the appendix of the Anabaptist Christian tradition block, the legend of the death of John the Baptist is told, 6:14-29.

370

Baptist Christians 2: In the 2nd section, the theme of old/new man

Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 12.11.1989
Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 12.11.1989

is illustrated by the example of the ages of man. First, Jesus helps a man who breaks the chains of the old way of life to a new life, 5:1-20.

In 5:21-43, the ages of the woman are presented. The 12-year-old girl who becomes marriageable and ends the life period of childhood dies for her parents, the life age of fertility, of her own family begins.

This period of life ends for the older woman. For her, a new time with new tasks begins with menopause.

369

The tradition of the Baptist Christians is about dying and resurrection

Berlin, Potsdamer Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin, Potsdamer Strasse, 12.11.1989

in baptism. The old pre-Christian man is to die and the new Christian stage of life is to begin. Symbols for this are the seed, which enables the emergence and growth of the new plant, or the stages of human life.

Mark varies the theme of the seed in the 1st Anabaptist-Christian passage and introduces the understanding of parables, 4:1-34.

Step by step he leads the reader to the understanding of the parables and the gradual growth of the Christian faith, which prepares the dying of the pre-Christian man in baptism.

Mark leads to the understanding of the calming of the storm as a parable for baptism. The disciples almost die, Jesus gives them new life, the same happens to the baptized, 4:35-41.

368

James 5: In the appendix, the question of Jesus’ kinship is posed

Berlin, Potsdamer Strasse, 12.11.1989
Berlin, Potsdamer Strasse, 12.11.1989

which is of particular interest to Jewish Christians: Does the blood relationship count, which favors Jewish Christians, or the relationship of the Spirit, which makes all Christians equal?

Answer: There are no privileges for Jewish Christians, all Christians are equal, only the kinship of the Spirit and the following of Jesus counts, 3:20-35.

367

James 4: Another compromise proposal:

Berlin, Victory Column, 11.11.1989
Berlin, Victory Column, 11.11.1989

If the Sabbath is basically no longer valid, can’t the Gentile Christians accommodate the Jewish Christians to such an extent that at least the healings are not performed on the Sabbath but on another day?

The answer is again: No, the Jewish religious laws fall away without substitution. Here the Jewish authorities separate from Jesus, the people run to him, 3:7-12, disciples (apostles) are called, 3:13,19.

366

James 3: The 2nd Jewish-Christian section is devoted to the question:

Berlin, Victory Column, 11.11.1989
Berlin, Victory Column, 11.11.1989

What Jewish religious laws apply in the community of Jesus? This is exemplified by the question of fasting and Sabbath observance, 2:18-3:6.

The basic question is: Do the disciples of Jesus have to fast? Answer: No. Now a compromise offer is formulated: Couldn’t the Jesus disciples at least fast on the Sabbath? Answer: No.

365

James 2: In 2:21-12 the initial question is varied again:

Berlin, Reichstag, 11.11.1989
Berlin, Reichstag, 11.11.1989

Now the moral level is touched: After the external conflict (ability) and the internal conflict (will), the problem is once again aggravated as a moral conflict:

May Jesus heal? May Jesus play God and cancel the punishment of the disease imposed by God? In 2:13-17 the question of forgiveness of sins is generalized.

The moral question becomes the theological one: may Jesus remove the Jewishly commanded barrier between the people of God, the Jews, and the Gentiles?

The message of the whole passage is: Yes, Jesus may heal and he did. Gentiles, if they want and believe, can belong to the people of God.

364

In the 1st section of the tradition of the church of James

Berlin, Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, 11.11.1989
Berlin, Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, 11.11.1989

(1:21-2:17) is about healing miracles. In 1:21-28 Jesus is attacked. Here the basic question is asked: Can Jesus heal the sick person?

In 1:40-45 the question is varied and focused on the will: The sick person wants to be healed, does Jesus want to heal him or is he not interested in the suffering of the sick person?

Yes, Jesus wants to heal him (the reader already knows that he can do this from 1:21-28), the sick person gets well.

The book to the blog:

Johannes Neumann: Der historische Jesus

Dear blog readers,

I am often asked where there is more information about the questions from the blog.

Now my new book (in German) has been published and is now available. Here you will find the answers to all questions.

The book has a large appendix with many special topics, a total of 512 pages with 5 full- and multi-page tables, 5 maps and 8 other illustrations.


Johannes Neumann

Der historische Jesus

Die Biographie, die Botschaft, die Überlieferung. 
ISBN 9 783755 730330


The book is available from BoD.de, in Amazon.de in Germany or in bookstores. The printed book costs Euro 35.00 in Germany. The e-book costs Euro 19.99 for the introductory price of 8 weeks, then Euro 27.99.

363

The introduction of the author Mark to his gospel:

Berlin, welcome money for GDR citizens, 11.11.1989
Berlin, welcome money for GDR citizens, 11.11.1989

After the heading in 1:1, the overture 1:2-20 has the task of setting the mood for the whole poem and especially the 1st part.

Mark knows how to connect the three traditions of the Jewish Christians, the Baptist Christians and the Peter Christians (who emphasize the reception of the Spirit, Acts 2:2.14) in such a way that all Christians can feel represented.

This happens not least through the calling of the disciples who establish the four original Christian groups: Simon Peter, Andrew (representing the Greek followers of Jesus), James and John, 1:16-20.

362

The 2nd, the Jewish-Christian block of tradition

Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 12.11.1989
Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 12.11.1989

deals with the expulsion of Jesus. Like the scapegoat in Leviticus 16:10, Jesus is cast out, in the 1st section from the people of God (disciples, Jewish authorities), 14:26-15:1.

In the 2nd section Jesus is expelled from the human community of the Gentiles and the common people, 15:2-37. The actual suffering of Jesus is limited to this Jewish-Christian transmission block.

In the 3rd, the Baptist-Christian transmission block, it is about the restoration of Jesus’ honor, first the earthly honor, 15,38-47, then the supernatural honor of Jesus, 16,1-8.

The book to the blog:

Johannes Neumann: Der historische Jesus

Dear blog readers,

I am often asked where there is more information about the questions from the blog.

Now my new book (in German) has been published and is now available. Here you will find the answers to all questions.

The book has a large appendix with many special topics, a total of 512 pages with 5 full- and multi-page tables, 5 maps and 8 other illustrations.


Johannes Neumann

Der historische Jesus

Die Biographie, die Botschaft, die Überlieferung. 
ISBN 9 783755 730330


The book is available from BoD.de, in Amazon.de in Germany or in bookstores. The printed book costs Euro 35.00 in Germany. The e-book costs Euro 19.99 for the introductory price of 8 weeks, then Euro 27.99.

361

In the 2nd part there are again three tradition blocks

Berlin, Trabbis at Check Point Charlie, 12.11.1989
Berlin, Trabbis at Check Point Charlie, 12.11.1989

of the three individual Christian churches Jewish Christians, Baptist Christians and Peter Christians.

The short tradition block of the Peter Christians includes only one section, which closes with the Lord’s Supper with the twelve disciples, 14:1-25.

Here the work of Jesus among the disciples finds its climax and conclusion.

The book to the blog:

Johannes Neumann: Der historische Jesus

Dear blog readers,

I am often asked where there is more information about the questions from the blog.

Now my new book (in German) has been published and is now available. Here you will find the answers to all questions.

The book has a large appendix with many special topics, a total of 512 pages with 5 full- and multi-page tables, 5 maps and 8 other illustrations.


Johannes Neumann

Der historische Jesus

Die Biographie, die Botschaft, die Überlieferung. 
ISBN 9 783755 730330


The book is available from BoD.de, in Amazon.de in Germany or in bookstores. The printed book costs Euro 35.00 in Germany. The e-book costs Euro 19.99 for the introductory price of 8 weeks, then Euro 27.99.

360

In the 1st part of the Gospel of Mark there are three blocks of tradition,

Berlin Wall at Brandenburg Gate, 11.11.1989
Berlin Wall at Brandenburg Gate, 11.11.1989

beginning with healing miracles 1:21, with parables 4:1 and with natural miracles 6:30.

These tradition blocks of the James Christians, the Anabaptist Christians and the Peter Christians are divided into a 1st section, in which Jesus is recognized as the sovereign victor, 2:17; 4:41; 7:37.

In a 2nd section, the separation from the opponents is at the end, 3:6; 6:3; 8:15, and the turning to the disciples. In a 3rd section, special material of the individual church is added.

In the 4th block of passages follows the tradition of the Jewish Christians about Judea and Jerusalem, from 10:1, to which there is no equivalent of the Anabaptist and Peter Christians. Jesus’ work in Jerusalem marks the climax and conclusion of his ministry in public.