Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Missing Mark Found!

In my last post I examined what the post-resurrection appearance in Matthew's gospel might tell us about original ending of Mark. It was late and, well, I'm a moron so I left out the other equally probable interpretation.

Instead of having an indication that Matthew was "correcting" an appearance-less Mark, Matthew may be preserving the original but now lost ending of Mark. Matthew obviously has very little tradition of Jesus appearances to draw on and the short scene he did include would be in keeping with the sparsity of Mark's narrative. Are the vocabulary and grammar sufficiently Markan to warrant this conclusion or my previous one? I will have to leave that analysis to the experts.

Now imagine that Matthew got to the end of his source, Mark, found no post-resurrection Jesus and just, well, stopped like Mark did. Wouldn't "is told among the Jews to this day" make a snazzy ending. I can just see Matthew stoking his beard significantly as he reads these words to the audience at the Gospel Slam. Now we would have both Mark's and Matthew's sitting around with the ends exposed and the scribes having to fix up both!

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