TJ Comments

Comments are welcomed on the comparisons between the verses or passages shown from the Gospel of Matthew and their TJ parallels. TJ stands for Talmud of Jmmanuel, discovered in 1963 by Eduard Meier and Isa Rashid.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Below is a comment I added to the 10/8/2011 blog of Mark Goodacre, who had blogged about the story of the hemorraghing woman in Mark's Gospel who was healed after touching Jesus' garment, while in Matthew she had touched only the hem of the garment. The fact that there's a YouTube musical video of the story prompted his blog. In my comment I pointed out several reasons why that location in Mark favors a Hebraic form of Matthew having preceded the Gospel of Mark, while Goodacre of course had utilized language expressing the preferred view that Mark came first, and (the writer of) Matthew redacted Mark.

Is it OK to look at things the other way around -- that it makes more sense that the writer of Mark redacted Matthew’s story? Markan priority, replete with reversible argumentation, is by no means assured when there is so much evidence, internal and external, favoring priority of a Hebraic Matthew, later translated into Greek Matthew with use then being made of Greek text within Mark and Luke.

1. At Mark 5.31 the unworthy Jewish disciples insolently question Jesus’ knowledge, not in Matthew’s parallel. This is but one of many well known Markan “harder readings” that disparage the Jewish disciples, for which the obvious possibility -- that the writer of Mark (probably in Rome) was anti-Jewish, becomes a non-issue if Mark is placed ahead of Matthew.

2. Just preceding the Markan pericope, the man healed of his legion is told to go to his home (in pro-gentile Decapolis) and proclaim all the Lord had done for him. This is easily seen as part of Mark’s Messianic “Secret” – a secret to be kept from the Jewish population but not at all from the gentiles. (The Markan addition is not in the parallel of Matt. 8.28-33.)

3. In the Matthean pericope there is no crowd or great crowd present, as there is in Mark 5.24,30.

4. In Mark Jesus’ courage, boldness and power are emphasized, while not in Matthew. In Mark 5.30 Jesus perceives that power had gone forth from him. Not only does Matthew not mention this source of power, but it is an obvious invention by the writer of Mark, since only Jesus would have known if such had occurred.

5. Whether the fringe/hem of the garment was original in Matthew or its absence original in Mark, can be argued either way. However, the latter is consistent with Matt. 23.5 mentioning phylacteries and fringes while Mark 12.38 omits them for a gentile audience, and just cautions to beware of scribes who wish to walk about in robes.

Addendum: In the TJ, the woman touched the fringe of Jmmanuel's garment.