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Old 11-17-2008, 08:54 AM   #11
Ben C Smith
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This remains a speculative suggestion, of course, but how better to explain Origen's words?
I tend to explain his words about John the baptist by reference to Josephus, and his words about James by reference to Hegesippus.

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Old 11-17-2008, 08:54 AM   #12
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Given Against Celsus 1.47, what does this mean? Is the author proposing that Origen messed up royally?
He did with the James passage.

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Old 11-17-2008, 09:17 AM   #13
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Better check on of the many lists of apostles. James brother of John is not same as James, brother of Jesus.

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Yet no one ever said James was beheaded.
The author of Acts did. He says it was "James, the brother of John"--but was it? Later in Acts 12, he describes the death of Agrippa in the same way that Josephus does. Doesn't it seem like he often uses Josephus when he talks about the Judean rulers?

Origen and our current version of Josephus don't, no. But Origen doesn't mention the beheading of John, either. In fact, Origen doesn't even mention the death of John at all--he only mentions the death of James. He seems to be excusing Josephus, in his debate with Celsus, as he has just used him to prove something about JtB (it's unclear what), but has to explain away what appears to have been a statement linking the death of James with the fall of Jerusalem. Origen seems to think that whatever text he's speaking of, Celsus is familiar with it--so it seems unlikely that he's bringing Hegesippus into the conversation (the only "Josephus" who seems to link the fall of Jerusalem with the death of James--and yet Hegesippus clearly does believe in "Jesus as the Christ", so it seems doubly unlikely that Origien is confusing Hegesippus with Josephus).

This remains a speculative suggestion, of course, but how better to explain Origen's words?
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:21 AM   #14
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This remains a speculative suggestion, of course, but how better to explain Origen's words?
I tend to explain his words about John the baptist by reference to Josephus, and his words about James by reference to Hegesippus.

Ben.
But how could he confuse the two? Josephus indeed does not believe in "Jesus as the Christ". But Hegesippus indeed does.
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:29 AM   #15
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Better check on of the many lists of apostles. James brother of John is not same as James, brother of Jesus.
You're operating on more than one not-so-secure assumption:

1) that Josephus correctly identifies the James of Ant. XX as the brother of "Jesus called Christ". The authenticity of this passage has been questioned both here and elsewhere many times. I am not saying it is inauthentic, but I am questioning its authenticity.

2) that the author of Acts has historical data showing that a James, the brother of John, who was distinct from a James, the brother of Jesus, was beheaded by Herod. That is also what I am calling into question.
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:39 AM   #16
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I tend to explain his words about John the baptist by reference to Josephus, and his words about James by reference to Hegesippus.

Ben.
But how could he confuse the two? Josephus indeed does not believe in "Jesus as the Christ". But Hegesippus indeed does.
I do not think he confused who Hegesippus and Josephus were. I think he confused, probably from faulty notes, their texts.

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Old 11-17-2008, 06:17 PM   #17
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I do not think he confused who Hegesippus and Josephus were. I think he confused, probably from faulty notes, their texts.

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This is a pleasing solution, but I kind of doubt Origen would confuse a history of early Christianity with a work by Josephus...?
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Old 11-17-2008, 06:37 PM   #18
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I do not think he confused who Hegesippus and Josephus were. I think he confused, probably from faulty notes, their texts.
This is a pleasing solution, but I kind of doubt Origen would confuse a history of early Christianity with a work by Josephus...?
This particular line of resistance to the Hegesippus hypothesis crops up too often, I think.

We have evidence that the name Hegesippus was confused in antiquity with Josephus. (Consider pseudo-Hegesippus, for example, which is actually a reworked Josephus.) Look at the Chronicon Paschale under Olympiad 212:
Josephus records in the fifth volume of the Capture that in the third year of Vespasian the capture of the Jews took place, as after 40 years from their daring deed against Jesus, at which time, he says, also James the brother of the Lord, who was also the bishop of Jerusalem, was thrown down and murdered by them by being stoned.
Why does the chronicler seem to say that Josephus wrote in the fifth book of the Capture (another name for the War) about James being thrown down and stoned? I think the chronicler has confused the fifth book of Josephus with the fifth book of Hegesippus; for Eusebius informs us in History of the Church 2.23.3 that Hegesippus recounted the execution of James in the fifth volume of his (now lost) Memoirs, an execution that involved James both falling from a height and being stoned.

I think this is a case where Josephus was confused with Hegesippus, and I think Origen did the same thing. The linguistic and thematic parallels between the Hegesippus account and how Origen describes Josephus are pretty impressive (Ken Olson has listed them).

(I should compile a list of ancient confusions of sources sometime; for example, in Miscellanies 6.8 Clement of Alexandria quotes 1 Clement 48.4 and attributes it to Barnabas. I know this particular case is not exactly the same thing, but such a list would be interesting nonetheless.)

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Old 11-17-2008, 07:47 PM   #19
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If I remember correctly the names Josephus and Hegesippus were confused at times in antiquity.


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Old 11-18-2008, 07:13 AM   #20
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Why does the chronicler seem to say that Josephus wrote in the fifth book of the Capture (another name for the War) about James being thrown down and stoned? I think the chronicler has confused the fifth book of Josephus with the fifth book of Hegesippus; for Eusebius informs us in History of the Church 2.23.3 that Hegesippus recounted the execution of James in the fifth volume of his (now lost) Memoirs, an execution that involved James both falling from a height and being stoned.
I guess I have wondered if "Hegesippus" actually had some sort of distant textual descent from the Aramaic War, but this idea gets pretty elaborate and I admit it's no more likely than that some ancient authors got Hegesippus and Josephus confused. I do find it odd that both Hegesippus' "memoirs" and the pseudo-Hegesippus have five books, for example.

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The linguistic and thematic parallels between the Hegesippus account and how Origen describes Josephus are pretty impressive (Ken Olson has listed them).
I don't disagree with that.
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