Discipleship and Family Ties in Mark and Matthew (Society by Stephen C. Barton

By Stephen C. Barton

From the very starting, following the Christian manner typically generated tensions inside households. Insiders and outsiders alike undergo witness to the danger to family and relations ties posed by means of a move of the believer's basic allegiance to Jesus. This examine indicates that the call for to subordinate kin ties based on the decision of Jesus is kind of intelligible within the context of ideals and practices either in Judaism and in Greco-Roman philosophy of the 1st century. Such historical past is said to the Gospels of Mark and Matthew.

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1), makes a strong assertion of the accuracy of his report, but this may be no more than historiographic convention. 15 See Vit. Cont. 13-18. 4. ' Sandmel, Place, 95. g. Abr. 60-7; Migr. Abr. ; Rer. Div. Her. 276-83, 287-8; Leg. All. 83. 28 Judaism and the Greco-Roman world serves as the primary type from amongst the patriarchs. Property and family ties serve in such discourse as a fundamental instance of the kind of material and sensory concerns which can distract the pious from the metaphysical quest.

At p . 118. 22 Introduction historical-critical method in gospels study need not lead to interpretative anarchy. On the contrary, what began for me as an experiment in reading the gospels has convinced me that such traditio-historical, literary and sociological approaches are by no means necessarily mutually exclusive. 73 73 On this latter aspect, see most recently my two essays, 'Communal Dimension' and 'Sect'. THE SUBORDINATION OF FAMILY TIES IN JUDAISM AND IN THE GRECO-ROMAN WORLD OF THE FIRST CENTURY 1 Introduction The gospel traditions provide clear evidence of a demand for, and an acceptance of, the subordination of family and household ties as a consequence of becoming a follower of Jesus.

The same point applies to authority patterns. According to Philo's portrait, the shift in authority away from individual household heads is a shift at the same time towards a paternalistic central authority balanced by an ideal of brotherly egalitarianism. '40 In sum, what Philo says about the Therapeutae and the Essenes gives good grounds for suggesting that the early Christians are not alone in attempting to develop patterns of sociability alternative to that of the household and those based on marital and kinship ties.

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