Jesus killed children

Abrahamic religion, you know, the one with the cross...

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Re: Jesus killed children

#61  Postby IgnorantiaNescia » Jan 05, 2012 3:44 pm

nunnington wrote:I think also Barney does not appear in the Hebrew Bible, whereas the fig and the fig-tree are quite common symbols. Thus, Hosea, 9: 10: "I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness; I saw your fathers as the first-ripe in the fig-tree in the beginning."

I think it is reasonable to assume that a Jewish audience would be fairly conversant with the basic tropes of Jewish rhetoric.

GakuseiDon has also shown quite neatly how the two 'ends' of the fig-tree story frame the story of the visit to Jerusalem, and the overturning of the tables in the temple. Thus it seems reasonable to see it as a rhetorical framing device; Israel is a busted flush, and requires new grafting, new plants, ('I am the vine'), and new fruit.


You're right, there's quite a use of the fig in symbolism. The only thing I don't get is how the "I am the vine" line from gJohn would affect a rhetorical device in gMark. :think:

John P. M. wrote:Thanks IgnorantiaNescia.


Ingen årsak. Do stay away from most of the stuff from that site, because the drivel on it isn't helpful to anyone's sanity.

John P. M. wrote:Back to the story. From the text, it doesn't seem like the disciples have a clue what this was all about, if it was meant to be a parable. And Jesus isn't keen on explaining it either. Instead, when they marvel at the sight of the tree, he tells them that they too can do things like that, and beyond, if only they have enough faith. Then again, his disciples are sometimes portrayed as being a bit dense, so perhaps he didn't bother this time around. But I have to say - had I been there, I doubt I would have connected it to the lacking faith and diminishing position of Israel either. :think:


Well, it could simply be a literary device put there by the author of gMark. Maybe it was based on stories that were being passed on at the time or the author could have put it there himself as a reference to what was to come next in his biography. It doesn't seem like 'Matthew' had much issues with altering the scene considerably in his gospel.

Dudely wrote:
IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
GakuseiDon wrote:
The text goes:

1. (Mark 11:1-11) Jesus goes to Jerusalem. People cheer and call out "Hosanna!" --> Jerusalem appears inviting, with an appearance of ready to accept Jesus as king.
2. (Mark 11:12-14) Jesus is hungry and sees a fig tree covered with leaves --> the fig tree is inviting, with an appearance of having fruit even though it wasn't the season for fruit.
3. (Mark 11:12-14) But the fig tree, despite appearances, does not have fruit --> the fig tree is deceptive!
4. (Mark 11:15-18) Jesus goes into Jerusalem and overturns the tables in the Temple. Despite the friendly welcome earlier when people are shouting "Hosanna!", the elders plot to kill Jesus --> Jerusalem is deceptive!
5. (Mark 11:19-20) After leaving Jerusalem, the disciples notice that the fig tree has eventually withered.

If the passage is symbolic, then it seems to point towards the eventual fate of Jerusalem and its elders.


Do you mean with the eventual fate the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 or just the rejection of Jesus by the elders and Jerusalem? If the first one is right, that would establish that gMark is written after the destruction of Jerusalem (within the usual margins given for Mark), but the second one seems also a valid interpretation.


Mark was written by an unknown Christian (possibly in Syria), in AD 70- shortly after the destruction of the second temple. It was, in fact, written partly BECAUSE of the destruction of Jerusalem.

Interestingly, this makes it the first of the gospels. It is likely that the individuals who wrote Matthew and Luke did so after reading Mark.


The range of dates I got for it was from about 65 to 75, so that could be both before and after the destruction of the temple. Where do you get this remarkably precise date for gMark from, I you don't mind me asking?
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Re: Jesus killed children

#62  Postby nunnington » Jan 05, 2012 3:53 pm

Ignorantia

Yes, I wasn't suggesting that 'I am the vine' is a direct follow-on from the fig-tree story! The Hebrew Bible is full of symbolism about vines and figs, so a story about a barren fig-tree would probably be immediately understood symbolically by a Jewish audience.

There are all kinds of other facts about figs which could be adduced here, as with the leaves appearing with tiny figs in the axils and so on, but you would need an expert on Jewish rhetoric and horticulture now!
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Re: Jesus killed children

#63  Postby John P. M. » Jan 05, 2012 3:57 pm

IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Back to the story. From the text, it doesn't seem like the disciples have a clue what this was all about, if it was meant to be a parable. And Jesus isn't keen on explaining it either. Instead, when they marvel at the sight of the tree, he tells them that they too can do things like that, and beyond, if only they have enough faith. Then again, his disciples are sometimes portrayed as being a bit dense, so perhaps he didn't bother this time around. But I have to say - had I been there, I doubt I would have connected it to the lacking faith and diminishing position of Israel either. :think:


Well, it could simply be a literary device put there by the author of gMark. Maybe it was based on stories that were being passed on at the time or the author could have put it there himself as a reference to what was to come next in his biography. It doesn't seem like 'Matthew' had much issues with altering the scene considerably in his gospel.


Yes, I'm not saying this actually happened at all, or as described. My thoughts were more geared towards those who believe so.

- "Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, 'Be taken up and thrown into the sea,' it will happen.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#64  Postby nunnington » Jan 05, 2012 4:33 pm

Incidentally, not only is the Hebrew Bible full of the symbolism of figs and vines, but Isaiah and Jeremiah both contain stories about barren fruit-trees. Thus, 'my beloved had a vineyard, on a very fertile hill ... and he looked for it to yield grapes, but it yielded wild grapes ...', (Isaiah 5).
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Re: Jesus killed children

#65  Postby Dudely » Jan 05, 2012 6:42 pm

There's another one about a fig tree that won't bear fruit so the owner has it cut down. It's one of Christ's parables to boot!
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Re: Jesus killed children

#66  Postby John P. M. » Jan 05, 2012 6:54 pm

Fine, but why did he choose to tell them right after, that not only could they themselves make fig trees whither, but they could even move mountains with their faith (instead of explaining what the metaphor was about)?

It reads like a magician doing a card trick, and then telling his spectators "If you truly believe in magic, not only will you be able to move all the Kings of diamond to the center of the deck while randomly shuffling it like I just did, but you will be able to saw women in half as well." - - - - when the actual reason he did the card trick was as a parable about the centralization of power.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#67  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 7:00 pm

GakuseiDon wrote:
proudfootz wrote:
nunnington wrote:
DodgyScouser wrote:

That story of the fig trees always bothered me, even when I was a believer. Jesus just seemed to be acting like a petulant little shit, and none of the waffly answers given by anyone at my church could gloss over the fact that he was acting like a petulant little shit.


Did no-one mention that the fig-tree could be a symbol for Israel, seen as barren and faithless, and not yielding fruit?


Since the fig was 'out of season' only an ignoramus would expect to find fruit.

Didn't Jesus help his Dad create these trees? He should have known better!

Why didn't the original author know any better, in your opinion? Why have the story of Jesus cursing a fig tree for no fruit and also state that it wasn't the season for fruit?


It's very odd - hard to figure out what 2nd century authors of works such as these might have been thinking.

Why portray Jesus as ignorant, petulant, and willfully destructive of other people's property? :think:

I can only imagine the author was trying to make some kind of obscure point of theology, or simply wasn't thinking this through...
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Re: Jesus killed children

#68  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 7:02 pm

Dudely wrote:There's another one about a fig tree that won't bear fruit so the owner has it cut down. It's one of Christ's parables to boot!


Jesus liked figs, but didn't like fig trees.

Maybe in Heaven He got used to wishing things into existence and was frustrated with process required on Earth...
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Re: Jesus killed children

#69  Postby IgnorantiaNescia » Jan 05, 2012 7:37 pm

proudfootz wrote:
GakuseiDon wrote:
proudfootz wrote:
nunnington wrote:

Did no-one mention that the fig-tree could be a symbol for Israel, seen as barren and faithless, and not yielding fruit?


Since the fig was 'out of season' only an ignoramus would expect to find fruit.

Didn't Jesus help his Dad create these trees? He should have known better!

Why didn't the original author know any better, in your opinion? Why have the story of Jesus cursing a fig tree for no fruit and also state that it wasn't the season for fruit?


It's very odd - hard to figure out what 2nd century authors of works such as these might have been thinking.

Why portray Jesus as ignorant, petulant, and willfully destructive of other people's property? :think:

I can only imagine the author was trying to make some kind of obscure point of theology, or simply wasn't thinking this through...


How do you know the fig was "out of season"? Fig trees grow figs two times a year, with the first fig harvest in spring. Jewish Passover, Pesach, is also in spring, as it starts on 15 Nisan.

So much for your "ignorant" point.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#70  Postby John P. M. » Jan 05, 2012 7:46 pm

Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?
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Re: Jesus killed children

#71  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 7:52 pm

IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
proudfootz wrote:
GakuseiDon wrote:
proudfootz wrote:

Since the fig was 'out of season' only an ignoramus would expect to find fruit.

Didn't Jesus help his Dad create these trees? He should have known better!

Why didn't the original author know any better, in your opinion? Why have the story of Jesus cursing a fig tree for no fruit and also state that it wasn't the season for fruit?


It's very odd - hard to figure out what 2nd century authors of works such as these might have been thinking.

Why portray Jesus as ignorant, petulant, and willfully destructive of other people's property? :think:

I can only imagine the author was trying to make some kind of obscure point of theology, or simply wasn't thinking this through...


How do you know the fig was "out of season"? Fig trees grow figs two times a year, with the first fig harvest in spring. Jewish Passover, Pesach, is also in spring, as it starts on 15 Nisan.

So much for your "ignorant" point.


Perhaps you should check out the source of this story:

The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. Then he said to the tree, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.”

Thanks for your 'help'. :crazy:
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Re: Jesus killed children

#72  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 7:54 pm

John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Apparently this Ignorantia has never read this bit of the bible but feels comfortable telling people what's in it...
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Re: Jesus killed children

#73  Postby IgnorantiaNescia » Jan 05, 2012 8:45 pm

John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Sure, in early April (that's around 15 Nisan) figs are generally not ripe yet, but you would definitely expect more than only leaves, namely taqsh. These taqsh can be eaten (but it was the poor man's food and not tasty) and they indicate that the fig tree is fertile. The lack of them (there was nothing but leaves) means that there would be no figs. My source on figs didn't mention that these were taqsh (not the real figs Mark refers to) so it needed a little more delving.

proudfootz wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Apparently this Ignorantia has never read this bit of the bible but feels comfortable telling people what's in it...


Interesting that you can know what people you know nothing about have or have not done.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#74  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 9:03 pm

IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Sure, in early April (that's around 15 Nisan) figs are generally not ripe yet, but you would definitely expect more than only leaves, namely taqsh. These taqsh can be eaten (but it was the poor man's food and not tasty) and they indicate that the fig tree is fertile. The lack of them (there was nothing but leaves) means that there would be no figs. My source on figs didn't mention that these were taqsh (not the real figs Mark refers to) so it needed a little more delving.

proudfootz wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Apparently this Ignorantia has never read this bit of the bible but feels comfortable telling people what's in it...


Interesting that you can know what people you know nothing about have or have not done.


I only say you 'apparently' didn't read the source since the source says it wasn't the season for figs full stop.

If it's not the season for figs, only someone ignorant of figs would expect to find figs on it - as Jesus is made to do in the story.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#75  Postby Onyx8 » Jan 05, 2012 9:08 pm

proudfootz wrote:

I only say you 'apparently' didn't read the source since the source says it wasn't the season for figs full stop.

If it's not the season for figs, only someone ignorant of figs would expect to find figs on it - as Jesus is made to do in the story.



No, no, you can't just read the words, you have to interpret them or it's no fun.
The problem with fantasies is you can't really insist that everyone else believes in yours, the other problem with fantasies is that most believers of fantasies eventually get around to doing exactly that.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#76  Postby IgnorantiaNescia » Jan 05, 2012 9:17 pm

proudfootz wrote:
IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Sure, in early April (that's around 15 Nisan) figs are generally not ripe yet, but you would definitely expect more than only leaves, namely taqsh. These taqsh can be eaten (but it was the poor man's food and not tasty) and they indicate that the fig tree is fertile. The lack of them (there was nothing but leaves) means that there would be no figs. My source on figs didn't mention that these were taqsh (not the real figs Mark refers to) so it needed a little more delving.

proudfootz wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Apparently this Ignorantia has never read this bit of the bible but feels comfortable telling people what's in it...


Interesting that you can know what people you know nothing about have or have not done.


I only say you 'apparently' didn't read the source since the source says it wasn't the season for figs full stop.

If it's not the season for figs, only someone ignorant of figs would expect to find figs on it - as Jesus is made to do in the story.


First, my translation doesn't read "it wasn't the season", so how do you expect me to read that if the translation doesn't even use "season"? The reason I made that mistake is simple, my source on figs referred to the fruits before the figs (taqsh) simply as figs. But you would expect taqsh around that time so I misread "it wasn't the time" as the source said that early April is the time for figs (while it should read taqsh or precursors). Is that clear enough?

Then, as I said, it was exactly the right season for those taqsh. Those were not out of season. And the story (if t is historical, which I doubt and you do even more) notes there was nothing but leaves. But taqsh indicate that the tree will grow figs; no taqsh, no figs. So (in the story) the tree was infertile and while you would not expect to find figs, you would expect the fig tree to have taqsh. So your "ignoramus" argument falls flat on its face.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#77  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 9:24 pm

IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
proudfootz wrote:
IgnorantiaNescia wrote:
John P. M. wrote:Not sure I disagree with you or not(!) IgnorantiaNescia, but I take it they are referring to what it says in Mark: "he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet."
Could you spell it out for me (what your perception of all this is)?


Sure, in early April (that's around 15 Nisan) figs are generally not ripe yet, but you would definitely expect more than only leaves, namely taqsh. These taqsh can be eaten (but it was the poor man's food and not tasty) and they indicate that the fig tree is fertile. The lack of them (there was nothing but leaves) means that there would be no figs. My source on figs didn't mention that these were taqsh (not the real figs Mark refers to) so it needed a little more delving.

proudfootz wrote:

Apparently this Ignorantia has never read this bit of the bible but feels comfortable telling people what's in it...


Interesting that you can know what people you know nothing about have or have not done.


I only say you 'apparently' didn't read the source since the source says it wasn't the season for figs full stop.

If it's not the season for figs, only someone ignorant of figs would expect to find figs on it - as Jesus is made to do in the story.


First, my translation doesn't read "it wasn't the season", so how do you expect me to read that if the translation doesn't even use "season"? The reason I made that mistake is simple, my source on figs referred to the fruits before the figs (taqsh) simply as figs. But you would expect taqsh around that time so I misread "it wasn't the time" as the source said that early April is the time for figs (while it should read taqsh or precursors). Is that clear enough?

Then, as I said, it was exactly the right season for those taqsh. Those were not out of season. And the story (if it is historical, which I doubt and you do even more) notes there was nothing but leaves. But taqsh indicate that the tree will grow figs; no taqsh, no figs. So (in the story) the tree was infertile and while you would not expect to find figs, you would expect the fig tree to have taqsh. So your "ignoramus" argument falls flat on its face.


Sadly, all the translations I have seen say it was not the season for figs:

http://bible.cc/mark/11-13.htm

That's a problem with translations, I guess...
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Re: Jesus killed children

#78  Postby proudfootz » Jan 05, 2012 9:25 pm

Onyx8 wrote:
proudfootz wrote:

I only say you 'apparently' didn't read the source since the source says it wasn't the season for figs full stop.

If it's not the season for figs, only someone ignorant of figs would expect to find figs on it - as Jesus is made to do in the story.



No, no, you can't just read the words, you have to interpret them or it's no fun.


Yes, let's say it was a species of figs which Mark didn't know was supposed to be in season and Mark was putting in his opinion and thus was misled by Jesus's wholly correct response...
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Re: Jesus killed children

#79  Postby Onyx8 » Jan 05, 2012 9:41 pm

Now you've got it.
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Re: Jesus killed children

#80  Postby GakuseiDon » Jan 05, 2012 9:42 pm

John P. M. wrote:Fine, but why did he choose to tell them right after, that not only could they themselves make fig trees whither, but they could even move mountains with their faith (instead of explaining what the metaphor was about)?

It reads like a magician doing a card trick, and then telling his spectators "If you truly believe in magic, not only will you be able to move all the Kings of diamond to the center of the deck while randomly shuffling it like I just did, but you will be able to saw women in half as well." - - - - when the actual reason he did the card trick was as a parable about the centralization of power.

The passages in Mark 11 read:

    19 When evening came, Jesus and his disciples[e] went out of the city.
    20 In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. 21 Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!”
    22 “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “Truly[f] I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

This site here looks at the chiasmic structure of Mark and comments:

    Seeley (2000) observes:

    "Thus, as Jesus and his disciples return to Jerusalem (apparently) from Bethany, he tells them that, if they have faith, they can successfully command "this mountain" to be taken up and cast into the sea (Mark 11:23). What is "this mountain"? Bethany is to the southeast of Jerusalem, and so as one approached the city, the temple mount would stand out prominently."

    This observation is also echoed by Duff (1992), who sees the mountain saying as further condemnation of the Temple.

Just earlier in Mark 11, the Temple elders plot to kill Jesus. It may that Jesus is referring to that when he talks about if you truly believe what you pray for (i.e. the coming of the Messiah) and if you forgive those that you hold anything against (i.e. Jesus) then all will be well. I'm not sure how valid that is, though. The problem is that it is possible to over-analyze these passages, to the point that any interpretation is possible. I'm not sure that this shouldn't stop us from doing any analysis though. And to me, the "fig-tree == Israel/Temple Judaism" symbolism seems firmly established.
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