What's Up, Doctor Goodacre (Transcript)

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Chris Sims: "His winnowing shovel is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn. But the chaff he will burn up with a fire that never goes out." The Gospel of Matthew, chapter 3, verse 12.

[Music: Live and Let Die]

Hello friends and neighbors, and welcome to Apocrypals. It's the podcast where two non-believers read through the Bible, and we try not to be jerks about it. My name is Chris Sims, and with me as always is the other set of footprints, Benito Cereno. Benito, how are you today?

Benito Cereno: Oh, well, I got two things. I got two things, Chris.

C: Okay.

B: I got a cold, and I got anxiety.

C: Brother, do I have some good news for you? Do I have an Euangelion for you, my friend?

B: Yeah, Jesus does offer the cure for anxiety. I hope it does me some good.

C: Also, I'm sad to hear that your sins have finally caught up with you in the form of a physical frailments.

B: Yeah, that's what it is. God found out about the podcast and he sent some microbial unclean spirits to harass me. Let me talk about my anxiety a little bit here, Chris, the top of the show. As you mentioned, we're reading the Gospel of Matthew, because we're here in this four-part series in which we're covering the four canonical gospels. We want to get those cannon boys done so that we can feel free to explore the overgrown wilderness that is the extra canonical gospels. But we've gotten to the point where now we're in books that everybody knows. You know what I mean? Like, I can say –

C: Except for me. This is my first time reading a lot of it.

B: That's the premise of the show. Yeah, these are books that people are very familiar with. Like I can be like Ascension of Isaiah and then The Winged Elephants come out and that's when the Lord of the Rings style battle starts and people will be like, "Oh, okay. I accept this information that you've given me because I've never heard of this book before."

But people have heard of Matthew and Mark. They know the Sermon on the Mount. They've heard it, right? And so people got a lot of ideas about these episodes. And I try to do my best on this show, right? I'm not the kind of person who likes to do things half-buttedly, we'll say, right? I don't like the seem that I do. I don't want to give off the impression that I've done things with half a butt. I try to put a lot of work into this show. And yet, if I miss something, if I decide something, we don't have time for something, Or, you know, if I legitimately miss something, I'm gonna feel bad when somebody comes to me and is like, oh, why don't you say this thing? Why don't you say this thing that's very important to me personally? I feel bad about that. I have anxiety about the feeling that I get when people say you've let me down by not mentioning my favorite or the most important part of this particular book that you're talking about.

And that's been made worse recently because as of this past week, following our episode on Mark, I've been followed on Twitter by Professor Mark Goodacre, who is a professor of the New Testament at Duke University.

C: Which is where I live.

B: Yeah, it's very close to your house. He could walk to your house. So we gotta do a good job, because I feel like if I mess up...

C: He could quite literally walk here and yell at me about the Bible, and I would have no recourse but to stand there and take it.

B: Exactly. It's a long walk to Kentucky. short walk from Duke to where you are. So today in this episode that we're recording right now, we're going to be discussing a theory called the Farrer hypothesis, although it's sometimes also called the Farrer-Goulder-Goodacre hypothesis. That's him. That's his name and the hypothesis that we're talking about today. And so, do I feel pressure to properly represent the hypothesis of a person who is outstanding in his field to the point that hypothesis is partially named after him that might be listening to this show. Yes, I do feel anxiety about that. Here's the thing though, all I know is that he's following me on Twitter. Like, I don't know that he listens to this show, you know what I mean?

C: He could just want horror movie recommendations.

B: It could be, that could be what it's about. But you know who does listen to the show that I know has at least listen to two episodes. A different professor, his name is Tony Burke, he's Associate Professor of Early Christianity at York University in Toronto. I know he listens to the show and I know that he has a very low tolerance threshold for our particular brand of nonsense that we do on this show. Because, I don't know if he's listening to this one, because he's like one of the main Apocrypha dudes. He's one of the main dudes of the Apocrypha.

C: So like number three after us. Like you're number one, obviously. I'm a strong number two.

B: I'm not making that claim. Dr. Burke, I'm not making that claim if you're listening to this episode. That is not happening. But he has commented on the show before. He mentioned us very generously. He mentioned us on his blog, the Apocryphicity blog. You guys should look it up if you're interested in New Testament Apocrypha. And he's also mentioned us a couple times on his Twitter. He did not like that we implied that secret mark is a secret gay gospel. He did not care for that. I was simply stating the controversy. I was repeating a theory that already existed. But his argument to me is, if I take the things that happen in Secret Mark, a mostly naked guy, Jesus spending the night with a dude, Jesus loving a dude, in quotes, right? If he says, "If I take those things as signs of homosexuality, I'm gonna see gay stuff in the canonical gospels as well." And my response to him was, "Oh, yes, I will." So I told him, "Be ready, 'cause that music drop's gonna be queued up." Again, it's coming. So everyone else can be warned.

But anyway, yeah, so you can see, you can see I'm feeling a little pressure to do a good job on this show that we do for fun and not for any money whatsoever.

C: Again, you said it very early on, if you have a complaint or a question about what we do here, what we do here, maybe write it on an offering envelope and send it to your pals, Chris and Benito. You know, there's a lot of stuff that purely by dint of time that we are not going to be able to cover and that we're hoping to get back around to once we start having guests and once we start doing episodes where we're focusing on specific topics. So don't feel the need to not engage with us about what we're talking about. It's fun stuff to talk about, but also just bear in mind that one of us did not know how to pronounce Boanerges.

B: Yeah. And while we're on that topic, just because you kind of caught me off guard with with that moment, clearly on the show last last week, and so I only gave the Greek pronunciation. And ironically, after I had told someone on our Tumblr that I would be trying to prioritize English pronunciations, I only gave the Greek Boanerges. In English, it is pronounced Boanergies, which is only modestly better. That's only modestly better than what Chris thought. So anyway, let's move on.

C: I feel like I made a mistake. Not in the pronunciation, 'cause it was very good. In that the original art for the podcast, before it was just you and me, I picked "Dos Santos". I picked the two saints, Peter and Paul. Just rubbing each other's faces. Like two very, in a very bro-y way.

B: Peter and Paul says they're brothers.

C: Yeah, yeah. And I think that's misleading, 'Cause I don't think we are the, we're not a couple of Pauls. We're not a, although one of us is kind of a bearded philosopher and the other one is kind of a ill-informed person who asks a lot of questions. But I feel like philosophically we're not, we don't have those long scholars' beards and the keys to heaven.

B: Right.

C: We're just a couple of sons of thunder.

B: Yeah, man.

C: That's what we are. We're coming in quick and hard on these gospels.

B: Yeah.

C: Hey, can we stop being defensive? Now that it's 10 minutes into the podcast.

B: Hey man, let's talk about Matthew. Let's do that, are you ready?

C: I am ready to talk about the book of Matthew. Here's a surprise for you. I didn't like it.

B: Yeah, that is a little surprising to me because I was reading this and I was like, "Ah, this one is very nice." I liked it very much. I had a good time reading Matthew. I found it went down smooth, but I guess, yeah, well, I guess as we get into the text, we can discuss that, but let's do some of that cool, cool background context stuff we like to do at top of the show.

C: All right, so the traditional view of course is that this book was written by Matthew the Evangelist.

B: Yep.

C: Who is also Matthew the Apostle.

B: Correct.

C: Levi, the tax collector who becomes Matthew.

B: That's right. And part of the reason that it gets attributed to him is because Matthew is the only account in which Levi is called Matthew, right? The other ones they call him Levi. And so the fact that he changed the name has led some people to go, oh, well, obviously he has some kind of inside information that the others don't have. But yeah, Matthew, very good, comes to English via the Greek Mataios, which is itself a Hellenization of the Hebrew name, "Madityahu." So it's the same name as "Matisyahu," the very good, Hassidic reggae boy. Same name. It means "gift of God," And so in that regard, in terms of meaning, it's the same name as Theodore. So if you're a Theodore and you're a Matthew, you guys are name bros, bilingual name bros, I guess.

He gets associated with this gospel thanks to our boy Papias again, who we talked about, early Christian father from very early on, who was also the one who attributed the Gospel of Mark to Mark. He's the one that claims this one was written by Matthew. And he also claims, quite spuriously, that this book is translated from a Hebrew original, originally translated from a gathered collection of what they call Hebrew logia, which are sayings or oracles. There is zero evidence of that. The Greek in Matthew is very polished and good, and obviously it connects with Mark, which was also written only in Greek, and so there's no evidence whatsoever that there is a Hebrew original for Matthew.

C: So there's no secret Matthew?

B: There's not a secret Matthew. I was a little bit let down. There's not gonna be a secret Luke, there's not a secret John, there is a secret James. We'll get to secret James eventually, but secret James is actually not tied to the book of James, really. As for the time, when was this book written? Like we talked about, about the generally accepted theory is that Mark is first among the four Gospels, and part of the reason we can date Matthew the way we do is because it features several both explicit and also oblique references to the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem. Do you remember what year that was, Chris, roughly?

C: I want to say 70 CE?

B: Correct. That was when, yeah, during the Judean revolt against the Romans, the Judean-Roman war. Yeah, the temple is destroyed, Jerusalem is destroyed, 70 CE. So this definitely comes after that. The generally accepted window for the composition of Matthew is between 80 and 90 CE. All right, so probably 10, 15, up to 20 years later than Mark probably. So I'm gonna hit you with a question I hit you with last time. Don't... It's fine. I'm gonna do this every time, so get ready. But maybe you knew what to look for this time. Who do you think is the audience for the book of Matthew?

C: Is it me? Is it me?

B: Yes, it is you. That's why the first chapter says, "For Christopher." Well, okay, so last time with Mark, we established that Mark is a Jewish writer writing for a Gentile, probably Roman audience, right? Part of the reason we know that, he always translates Aramaic, he always explains Jewish practices and rituals.

C: Then my guess would be that this is written specifically for the Jewish audience, because it does start with all the begats that go all the way back to Abraham.

B: Yeah, that's right. So if the Book of Mark is a Jewish writer writing for a Gentile audience, a Roman audience. Matthew is a Jewish writer writing for a Jewish audience. And yes, one of the clues for that, as you pointed out, is the fact that the lineage goes back to Abraham, right? Abraham is the father, he's the patriarch of the Israelite race, right? And so tracing Jesus back to him, that's his bona fides, right? Like, that's a big, that's a major deal. But also, Matthew just doesn't, he doesn't explain the Jewish stuff. He just assumes his audience knows it. He makes it clear that Jesus came to fulfill the law and not to destroy the law. Who would that be important to? Obviously, the Jewish people for whom the law is a big deal, not a Gentile audience who does not care about the law.

And also, one interesting point is the thing that Matthew does different from the other evangelists is that he uses the phrase "kingdom of heaven" and not "kingdom of God," right? And if you guys know, generally within Judaism, you're not supposed to say the name of God, right? There's obviously a bunch of different names of God, and there's a specific one or ones you're not supposed to say, but in the same idea, like even to the point where modern Jewish people will often drop out the vowel in God, right? You write G-d, right? Similarly you're not supposed to say or write the name of God, so you see a similar kind of thing with Matthew where he talks about Kingdom of Heaven rather than Kingdom of God. He's not just idly using the name of God. But at the same time, Chris, you probably picked up on this one. I feel very confident that you picked up on this. Who are the major villains? Who comes out looking the worst in Matthew?

C: You realize that when you say I'm very confident that you picked up on this...

B: 'Cause I am.

C: That if I did this wrong, I seemed even worse than if you hadn't.

B: No, absolutely not. No, absolutely not. I'm very confident that you know which particular group of gentlemen are the bad guys in Matthew.

C: It's the Pharisees.

B: It is the Pharisees. Okay, see, my confidence paid off. It paid off.

C: But you, okay, it's a good thing the cure for anxiety is in this gospel. You're just heaping it on me right now.

B: No, no way. No, see, this is the theme of this show, of this episode is my anxiety. Don't—you're stepping on my deal. Now, yeah, it's the Pharisees, man, because we're at a really important transitional time in the relationship between Judaism and Christianity, right? This is around a time where Christianity is really kind of starting to splinter off into its own thing, and a big part that has to do with the destruction of Jerusalem because that is a major turning point in the history of Judaism as a religion and as a cultural identity, right? Because you've got first simple Judaism with the Israelites, right? That's the first temple built by Solomon and then it's destroyed and then it's rebuilt following the Babylonian exile. You've got our second temple Judaism, which is a major important point. Now the second temple is destroyed and that's the beginning of what's called Rabbinic Judaism, which is what we still have today. We still have this tradition where there's not a central temple anymore and so the traditions and teachings of Judaism are passed down through rabbis. And the Rabbinic tradition originates with the Pharisees. And we talked about the Pharisees a bit in one of our earlier episodes. They're basically, they're a sect of Jewish people who are very much about the study and practice of the law found within the Torah, the first five books of the--

C: And Paul was a Pharisee.

B: Right.

C: If you remember our discussion in Acts about Paul being extremely into the law.

B: Yeah, and then extremely not. Yeah.

C: Yes. All in or all out.

B: Exactly, that's how Paul do. Yeah, and they're often paired in the Gospels with the Sadducees, which is another sect. They're a group that only follows the Torah and not any of the other Hebrew scriptures, and they don't believe in the resurrection. They actually did not get along with the Pharisees at all. They were opposing rival groups, and so the idea that the Gospels always pair them up as like co-oppressors of Jesus is kind of a weird thing.

But what I'm getting at is the thesis of this book is kind of like, it's against this new emerging trend of rabbinic Judaism, because Matthew is saying the real lineage of Israel is not going through rabbis. Rather, it comes through the prophets, right? the prophets is the real line of Israel leading up to the last prophet, John the Baptist, right? And then John the Baptist literally anoints the successor, the new phase, right? The prophets have all led up to Jesus. Now Jesus is here, he's the Messiah, and this was what's going on. These Pharisees need to take their business elsewhere. That's the thesis of Matthew.

C: I did notice that at the end of the book, like, according to Matthew, Jesus literally says, "Don't call anyone 'rabbi,' because you've already got the only teacher that you need."

B: Right.

C: And it's me/God.

B: Right. And if you pay attention during the book, and this is something you'd have to be looking for, the actual followers of Jesus never call him "rabbi." They call him "Master," they call him "Lord." The only people who call him "rabbi" are outsiders. And most tellingly, at the end of the book, the person who calls him Rabbi is Judas. And I think that it almost certainly is meant to associate Judas with the legalistic Pharisees, which to Matthew would be the worst thing you can be, right? So I think that's probably intentional.

And another thing that's really interesting is that the terminology transitions within Matthew for much of the book, he refers to the Jewish people as Israelites, but then there hits a point where they reject Jesus, and he starts referring to them as "Udayoi," the "Judaeans" or "Jews," basically. And that's--he's saying, "You guys were Israelites. You guys were God's chosen people up to a point, and you had this crisis point, and you biffed it, and so now you're just "Judaeans." And so, yeah, this is definitely a book of internal strife within Judaism as as Christianity is starting to really splinter off into its own thing, if that makes sense.

C: It does, and that also sort of explains one of the problems that I had with this book, which is that it is literally twice as long as Mark.

B: Yeah, sure. Well, we'll get to that in a second. We'll get to that in just a second.

C: And I thought Mark needed an editor, so you can imagine, you can imagine my feelings about this one.

B: Yeah, sure. I do want to note, I heard back from both friend of the show Ben Rowe and King of the Gnostics Jonathan Stewart. They both hit me with one that was my bad. I should have hit this one because I knew this. But when you were asking me, why does the canon include both Matthew and Mark when that seems to be redundant? Well, the answer is what we were just talking about. They were books written for different audiences. The four Gospels are all written for different audiences. Each one would have been the preferred favorite gospel of a different church. And when you get to the official canonization of the Scriptures and these big ecumenical councils, you've got people who are trying to bring the church together, right? You don't want to say, like, "No, only this Gentile gospel is good," or, "Only this Jewish gospel is good." You want these ones that have at this point already become enmired in the tradition and the liturgy and the ritual of separate churches, you want each one to be accepted. So even though they seem to be redundant, there's going to be some churches that only know Mark and some churches that only know Matthew or Luke or John. And so in order to make all of these churches feel like part of one universal and Catholic Church, right, you want to include the pet Gospels of each of the different communities, if that makes sense.

So while we're still talking about Matthew, let's hit up our art history moment. So we talked about last time.

C: I'm sticking with ox, by the way. I'll tell you that right off the front. Because eventually it's gonna be...

B: Your guess is ox. You're right, it will eventually be correct. It's not correct this time, but it eventually will be.

C: Unbelievable.

B: Here's the trick. Basically, here's the clue that I'll give you. Think about how each of the Gospels starts, right? That's your clue, right? Because Mark starts with the voice in the wilderness, and so this wilderness imagery, as a result, he's a lion, right? And also Mark focuses on resurrection, and we talked about that. Lions as a resurrection symbol. Matthew, what's the first thing in Matthew?

C: The begats?

B: The begats, right? Establishing the lineage, the genealogy, the human history of Jesus, right? So...

C: Oh, so he's the man.

B: He's the man. He's the man, yes. And so the key theme...

C: So, wait a second, wait a second. I'm gonna guess.

B: Yeah.

C: Then here's my prediction.

B: Okay.

C: Luke's the ox.

B: I'm not gonna confirm anything, but go ahead.

C: Luke's the ox.

B: Luke's the ox.

C: And John's the eagle.

B: Okay, all right. We'll see if those are correct next time.

C: 'Cause I know that Luke is where we get the Christmas story.

B: It's true.

C: And I know that when that little drummer boy went pa-rum-pa-pum-pum, the ox and lamb kept time.

B: Yeah, ox and ass. They did, it does get changed, because people don't want to say the A word. But--

C: Yeah, you can't say that in church.

B: But the symbolism of the ox and the donkey in the nativity is so important that it was so universal in early art that sometimes you might not even have Joseph in the nativity, but that ox and that donkey are there. But anyway, yeah, Matthew's the man because his key theme is incarnation. So Mark is the lion, resurrection, Matthew, man, incarnation. Okay, good. So you got your guesses. We're gonna lock them in, lock them in in the Answer-tron, and we'll find out next week if Luke is the ox.

All right, so here's the issue that we have to address. It's a problem. It's a bit of a problem. In fact, it's called the synoptic problem. So last week, we spent a lot of time talking about how Mark is the action gospel. It's action gospel number one, right? 'cause it's Jesus did this, then he did this, then he did this. What does Matthew have that Mark doesn't have a lot of? Mark, what does Matthew have a lot of that Mark does not have a lot of?

C: Action?

B: No, sorry, did I mess it up? Mark has action. What does Matthew have that Mark doesn't have?

C: He's got a lot of talking.

B: That's it.

C: He's got a lot of parables.

B: That's it, talking. Matthew's got a lot of talking, right? You can break Matthew up into, basically there's five sections of discourse, five sections of narrative, and they're each broken up with him going like, "And then Jesus began this discourse, and then when the discourse was over, he did this." So you've got these five huge sermons, these big blocks of talking.

So the synoptic problem is we know that Matthew, Mark, and Luke are related, and the question is, how are they related? Which one came first? Did one copy off the other? Etc. Right? And there's also the problem of if we accept as We do, not controversial for me to say this, I hope. If you accept that Matthew and Luke use Mark as a source, here's the other problem. Where's the rest of that stuff come from? Where's all the talking come from? That's the question. All these things contribute to what's called the synoptic problem, because you've got bits that are known as the triple tradition, which is where Matthew, Mark, and Luke all agree. They have the same stuff, basically. We did a number breakdown of that last time. Like Matthew recreates 90% of Mark and Luke recreates 60 or whatever percent. We did the numbers on that last time. This is the triple tradition. But then you also have what's called the double tradition, which is places where Matthew and Luke agree on stuff that Mark does not have at all. This amounts to about 200 verses. There's about 200 verses worth of material that Matthew and Luke have in common that Mark does not have at all. So, a couple different theories on this. Are you ready for the first one?

C: I am prepared.

B: Alright, so the majority theory on this, especially in the United States, is what's called the two source theory or the two source hypothesis, where one of those sources is Mark and the other source we're finally talking about about it is Q.

C: Oh dip, oh dip.

B: All right, so what is Q?

C: It's, you called me out on this one on Tumblr, when someone mentioned Q, and you said that my excitement about Q was likely the result of not knowing anything about it and assuming it was some kind of Star Trek James Bond thing.

B: Yeah.

C: Which was very mean and also 100% accurate.

B: Yeah, yeah, it wasn't meant to be mean. I just meant that I actually intentionally told you not to read about Q because first of all, I want there to be some element of surprise on this show. But also, I didn't want you to be super disappointed because Chris and I listeners both have a copy of a book called The Complete Gospels. It's put together by a bunch of professors from a group called the Jesus Seminar, which is a historical Jesus researchers and such. They did the translation. So if you ever hear us refer to the Scholars Version of a text, we're referring to the text from The Complete Gospels. They put together a reconstruction of Q, which is made by creating a parallel synopsis, basically, where they run in parallel the matching verses from Matthew and Luke to show where the overlap is.

And so Chris was like, "Should I read Q for this episode?" I was like, "Probably don't, because first of all, you would find it very boring because it's not even a thing." And so the thing is, Q is a completely hypothetical text. We haven't found no copies of it. It's strictly reconstructed from this overlap in Matthew and Luke. And literally, the version that we have in the Complete Gospels is literally just constructed from the overlap between Matthew and Luke. So Q, oh, Q by the way, I should say, the theory was begun by a German scholar in the 1800s. And so the name Q stands for the German word "Quelle", which means source. Not that interesting.

C: That's such a dope code name though.

B: It really is. Yeah, it is.

C: Like if you hear like, yeah, did you know there's a gospel you've never heard of called Q? Like the letter? Like that is, that should be... Okay, Secret Mark is a pretty good name. Much like Secret Wars, it has a word that I think we're all pretty interested in.

B: Yeah.

C: But, like, that's the one that should be called Q, 'cause it's got secret stuff in it.

B: Yeah, so the two source hypothesis, that's the main one, especially in America, that is generally accepted. There's also the four source hypothesis, which is getting a little bit more out there, but the four source hypothesis looks at the fact that there's stuff that's only in Matthew and stuff that's only in Luke, right? So Matthew and Luke have overlap from where they copy Mark and they have overlap from possibly the second source, which is Q, but they also have stuff that's unique to each of those two books. And so these sources are sometimes called special Matthew or M and special Luke or L.

So that's the four source hypothesis. again, now we're introducing like three more texts that do not exist in any form whatsoever. They're not extant, I mean to say. That doesn't mean they never existed. I mean that we do not have any physical evidence or reference to them in other literature that exists, right, if that makes sense. So possibly Special Matthew, Special Luke, those may just be oral traditions within the respective communities of Matthew and Luke, right? Within this Jewish community that Matthew was in, they may have their own particular traditions that Matthew's writing down.

So yeah, the thing about two-source and especially four-source hypothesis is we are starting to conjecture the existence of a number of things that we don't have evidence for apart from the fact that there's overlap between these texts, right? And they also are based on the idea that Matthew and Luke were not familiar with each other's texts, right? They're based on that assumption. So you got a couple of guys who break out Occam's razor, right? And they say, "Why are we introducing some fake gospel that's not a thing? Why are we doing that?" Sorry, I'm gonna ask you another question, Chris. If you were trying to simplify this process, if you wanted to use Occam's razor and eliminate any factor that is not absolutely necessary, if you want to streamline this thing, what would you say, what would be the solution? So again, we start with Markan priority, the idea that mark is first. How would you streamline this process makes, let's just say Q is not a thing, Q doesn't exist, how could we resolve the synoptic problem? How do we account for the fact that there are so many passages in Matthew and Luke that are word-for-word identical that don't come from Mark?

C: Then I would assume one of them had to come first and the other one just added different stuff and edited out what it wanted.

B: Yeah, that's right. And so this, the other theory that I was mentioning, the the Farrer hypothesis, which is named after Austin Farrer. It's also called the Farrer-Goulder-Goodacre hypothesis, which includes Michael Goulder and Mark Goodacre, who may or may not be listening. What's up, Dr. Goodacre? That one just says, yeah, Mark came first, Matthew wrote based on Mark, and then Luke just copied Matthew. It streamlines it, it makes it very easy, nice. You don't have to invent an imaginary gospel called Q. But again, Q is the majority theory. That's what I was taught in college, right? I was taught Q. But yeah, the Farrer hypothesis, nice and neat, right? So in this case, you've got Luke and he's adding his own stuff as necessary, but he's largely borrowing from both Mark and Matthew, right? Nice and neat.

Some people take issue with that because there are things that Matthew includes that Luke doesn't. And if Luke is copying Matthew, why would he leave these things out? Why would he omit these things? Probably the most notable example of this is the story of the Magi, right? Only found in Matthew. And if Luke is copying from Matthew and he's greatly expanding the nativity narrative, why would he leave out the Magi? Well, Professor Goodacre has a very excellent answer to this that I enjoy so much. And Chris, maybe you can figure this out. Think about what we definitely know about Luke from reading Acts, why might Luke leave out the story of the Magi if he's copying whole hog from Matthew's Gospel?

C: Presumably because he's a friend of Paul's, and Paul didn't want it in there.

B: That could be, that could be. How about this? Luke hates Magi. He hates them. Who are the bad guys in Acts? Simon Magus?

C: Wizards. They're wizards.

B: Luke hates wizards, so he cuts the wizard chapter out of Matthew, a very interesting hypothesis that I enjoyed.

C: Hang on though, the Magi, aka the three kings, aka Los Tres Reyes, aka the wise men, they're not like wizards in the way that Simon Magus is a wizard.

B: Um, they kind of, it's the same word.

C: I mean, well, yeah, yes.

B: It occurs, we see it in the Old Testament, the Greek Old Testament, in the Septuagint, right? And Daniel, which we've read, it's the word that's used for the wizards who are brought out to oppose Daniel in chapter two, right, in the dream interpretation contest. The word goes all the way back to, like, Zoroastrian priests. It's a whole thing. But yeah, it means, like, astrologers who are also magicians and so on. So yeah, I like--

C: So you're telling me that because they-- the interpretation that I always got as a kid that I think is borne out by the major motion picture of the star.

B: Mm-hmm.

C: Which I did see on the Saturday after Thanksgiving this year, and I highly recommend it because it is wild.

B: Yeah, I haven't watched it yet. I'm saving it for Christmas in July. It's...

C: Brother?

B: Yeah.

C: It is way more bonkers than you think it's gonna be and also way funnier.

B: Yeah, okay.

C: There is a bit in there. Um, there's a great bit where The animals are talking because the premise of the star is that it's about the it's about the donkey.

B: Yeah.

C: Whose name is Boaz?

B: Yeah.

C: And the donkey in a very like first draft picks our sort of way goes "Yeah, maybe something exciting will happen one day, but come on. This is Nazareth. Nothing ever happens in Nazareth," and then there's a smash cut to Joseph saying, "you're pregnant with the Messiah?" Which is amazing.

B: Yeah.

C: Like the interpretation of the, the Wiseman story for me has always been that they are following a star that is a sign from God. Not that they are interpreting star signs in the manner of astrologers, but is that just like retrofitting that back into the Christmas story?

B: I mean, kind of a little bit, right? So, so the Magi, I mean, would have been primarily astrologers.

C: Also, why is it Magi and Magus and not Magi and majus?

B: Okay, well, okay. God, I have to, hooked on phonics, Christopher, the letter G is hard in front of the vowels A, O, and U and soft, usually, in front of E, I, and Y. And so that's why it's magic. Some people do say magi. That accounts for the difference in the vowels there, magus, magi. But yes, that's why it's a soft G in front of the I and Magus, it's not Majus, right? Just like you don't say, it's like, I'll shoot you with my gun. Well, no. Anyway.

C: I'm gonna start saying that though.

B: Yeah, that's why a lot of the discourse around GIF versus GIF is very stupid and a lot of people need to open a book sometime, but let's not get into GIF.

C: Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, are you saying it's GIF?

B: This is a very complicated thing and I'm not gonna get into it. I'm literally not getting into GIF discourse right now. I'm not doing it.

C: Let me give you a tip real quick. It's GIF 'cause it's the graphical interchange format.

B: Yeah, but G is never gonna be soft in front of a consonant. And also, since when do we care about what the individual words in an acronym sound like when we say the acronym? We don't say NASA because of aeronautics and administration. It's stupid. Anyway, let's continue. We're please talking about this jostle right now. What was I saying? I was talking about Austin Farrer.

C: Yeah, you were talking about how Luke cuts out the wizards.

B: Yeah, so anyway.

C: Also, I have never heard these dudes referred to as the three wizards, and I think we need to start that.

B: Yeah, I think we're gonna start.

C: That needs to come back.

B: The three wizards. But getting back to Austin Farrer. One thing, part of his argument that, this is not, I'm not saying this to discredit the Farrer hypothesis at all, I just think it's funny in retrospect. At the time, he was saying, One of his arguments against the existence of Q was, gospels are narratives, guys. We don't have a gospel that's just sayings, ridiculous. And of course, after he said that, we've discovered the gospel of Thomas, the gospel of Mary, secret James, and the dialogue of the Savior, et cetera. We have discovered the entire genre of sayings gospels since the time that he was like, "a sayings gospel? ridiculous." But again, that's not to discredit the hypothesis at all. It's just a thing that doesn't hold up in retrospect.

There are a number of other theories. There are very many theories, in fact. Let me just blast through a couple of these theories that propose solutions to a synoptic problem. Three source hypothesis, I almost said the three horse hypothesis, which would be amazing. I wish there was a three horse hypothesis. Three source hypothesis, the Q plus, AKA the Papias hypothesis. There's the Wilke hypothesis. There are hypotheses based around the fact that Matthew came first. So there's the two gospel, also known as the Griesbach hypothesis. There's the Augustinian hypothesis, which is actually the earliest one that we have, which is Augustin, who's saying, the order in the canon is right, Matthew is first, then Mark, then Luke. Then there's the Jerusalem school, who decides to buck the complete trend and say, actually, Luke is first, which is wild. The multi-source hypothesis, in which each gospel draws from a different combination hypothetical earlier documents. This is closer to the four sources that I was talking about. It proposes all sorts of non-extent hypothetical sources. You have the proto-gospel and the idea that each gospel independently copies from some additional hypothetical proto-gospel. Then you have the independence hypothesis in which each gospel is independent and each one's an original composition based upon oral history. Or in the case of Mark, if you decide to choose that Mark is Peter's interpreter, then Peter just told Mark exactly what happened to him in his real life, and Mark just wrote it down.

But then if we really want to get into it, we've got a theory, the personal theory of our boy King of the Gnostics, Jonathan Stewart. He follows the teachings of a guy named Matthias Klinghardt, who as recently as 2008 proposed a theory which involves the Marcionite gospel, which I realize when saying it, that sounds like a Ray Bradbury book.

C: Is that one of the-- that's not one of the five metals from the mantling is it?

B: Marcionite? It might be.

C: There's Promethium, Batmanium...

B: Dionesium.

C: Dionesium, Electrum, and Marcionite.

B: Yeah, J'onn J'onzz brought it. Yeah, so the Marcionite gospel which I should... I'll spell it, it makes a little... M-A-R-C-I-O-N-I-T-E. This is also known as the Gospel of the Lord. It was the gospel used by followers of a guy named Marcion, M-A-R-C-I-O-N, Marcion of Sinope in the mid-second century. So this theory that Klinghardt says is that the Marcionite gospel is based on Mark, Matthew is based on Mark with making references to the Marcionite gospel, and then Luke is based on the Marcionite gospel with references to Matthew. So the Marcionite gospel is not a hypothetical document. It's lost, but we can almost entirely reconstruct it because so many early church fathers talked about it in their letters, similar to how we got those bits of Secret Mark because Clement wrote about them and copied down some verses. Similarly, we can reconstruct most of the Marcionite gospel from that.

So yeah, wow, we sure did a long bit on the composition of Matthew, huh?

C: I was told this would go faster.

B: Yeah, let's get into the text, and since so much of it overlaps Mark, maybe we can go through it a little bit faster, I don't know.

C: As you previously mentioned, one of our listeners used the phrase "action gospel" for the first time I've heard about it, to talk about Mark, and I definitely feel like that is probably why I enjoyed Mark more. Because Matthew is a lot of talking and a lot of it, from my perspective, feels very unnecessary.

B: Okay, okay.

C: And that starts right here in Chapter One. Because, what was the first thing I told you when we started talking about doing this podcast?

B: Yeah, you said you didn't want to read begats. And that's why we didn't start-

C: I didn't want the begats.

B: That's why we started with Acts and not Matthew, yeah. Because you didn't want to read begats. And you were like, "Where are the begats?" And I said, "Well, they're in Matthew." And you said, "Nuh-uh." And yeah, here they are.

C: But here's the thing. So I'm like, fine, we're gonna get into the begats, let's do it. And we start Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, know all that. We get down to the Babylonian exile, we get King David. 'Cause I know that Jesus is of the house of David. That is a thing that is taught in Christian churches. Here's the problem. I always assumed that the begats would end with Mary. They don't. They end with Joseph, who's not Jesus' dad.

B: Not his biological dad, rude.

C: Who's his adopted father, yes. But Joseph did not begat Jesus.

B: Yeah, you're not the only one who noticed that problem. And we'll get back to that.

C: Because the next thing that happens is an angel shows up.

B: Right.

C: One of those 14 winged boys.

B: Yeah.

C: Shows up and goes, "Hey, Joseph, by the way, you don't need to divorce your new wife, Mary, because she's actually carrying the Holy Spirit's child. The Holy Spirit begat Jesus.

B: So yeah, the genealogy leads to Joseph. I should also mention, just keep an eye on some of these names because when we read Luke next week you're gonna find out they do not match at all. The genealogies do not line up.

C: Okay, so why is this here?

B: Well, two reasons. And you pointed both of them out. This genealogy connects Jesus all the way back to Abraham, so it proves that he's of the line of Israel. It also connects him back to David, so it proves he's of the royal line. So just like that, just like that Hellboy, just like that Hellboy where they proved that he's the true king of England and he can pull Excalibur out of stone, this is just like that. Jesus is the true heir of the true king of the Israelites.

C: No, no, no, no it's not. That would be like if if that issue of Hellboy proved that Professor Broom was the true king of England.

B: Yeah, sure. Yes, but right, this book does show that Joseph was a father to Jesus. Yes, but you're right. It does lead to... It is weird that it ends with Joseph and not Mary.

C: And look, I'm not saying that if we accept all of this as true, which we're engaging with the text, then yes, of course, Jesus grows up in the house as the child of Mary and Joseph. You know, he's the carpenter's son. He is called that in this gospel when he goes back to Nazareth. But at the same time, if we're talking about a patrilineal sort of blood of kings descendancy, then it stops at Joseph and then goes to like Jude and Joses.

B: And Joses.

C: Jesus' brother, Joses, that we found out about last week.

B: Jesus and Joses and James. So yeah, but I mean the fact that we see, when we see Joseph's name, give Jesus the name Jesus, like that's a big moment in which he becomes his son. Like that's tantamount to an adoption. I know, I know man, it's a problem. It's a problem. There it is.

C: This leads to the problem that I have with the first three chapters of Mark.

B: Yeah.

C: And we can go through them a little more individually. Coming at it from a comic book perspective, this is very much like "Untold Legend of the Batman" or even "Man of Steel" where it's going back and explaining how things line up in a way that seems, and again, I am trying not to be rude here or disrespectful of the beliefs, I do think there's a lot of very good stuff and very obviously worthwhile stuff in the Gospel of Matthew, but it's very convenient.

B: Oh yeah, Matthew, again, trying to prove that Jesus is the fulfillment of Hebrew prophecy, Matthew really, he stretches some things to fit.

C: Yeah, there's like, "Oh, well the Messiah is supposed to come out of Egypt, so Jesus went to Egypt for a little bit and then he came back."

B: Right. There's this bit in chapter 2. Well, that's also in chapter 2. So what you might have noticed in chapter 2 here is that rather than the idea that we have from Luke, which is that Joseph and Mary live in Nazareth and Galilee and they have to go down to Bethlehem for a census, and then they go back from Bethlehem and they go back to their home in Galilee. Instead, what we get here is that Jesus is born in Bethlehem in Judea because they live there and then afterwards they move to Nazareth and Galilee. And why is Bethlehem important? Well, Bethlehem is important because it's the traditional home of David. It's the burial place of Rachel who is an ancestor of Jesus according to the genealogy and it's also an important place in the book of Ruth who is also mentioned. And so we got three major stories that have to do with Bethlehem so it's important to Jesus and Bethlehem.

But then he moves to Nazareth and he says, "Then he went and settled in a town called Nazareth to fulfill what was spoken through the prophets, that he will be called a Nazarene." And everyone's like, first of all, what's a Nazarene? It seems clear to us now that a Nazarene means somebody from Nazareth, but that's not actually super clear linguistically that that's what that means. And the question is, what prophecy is this a reference to? And generally, now people assume that it is a reference to a verse from Judges talking about the birth of Samson, where it says Samson will be called a Nazarite, which is a whole different thing that's not even, that's only, that really sounds closer in English than it does in other languages. So, and even the word here is not even Nazarene, the word is actually Nazarean, which is spelled similarly but distinct from Nazarene. So yeah, that's another one. And there's another example later that I definitely want to mention that's quite later in the book, so I don't want to jump ahead. But yeah, we kind of see Matthew occasionally trying to shove a square peg into a round hole.

C: It's very much Barry Allen wears a bow tie because he got it from his mom the day she died.

B: Yeah.

C: There's a lot of... I wrote about retcons in the margins of my Bible quite a few times in this. We also get the quote from Isaiah here in chapter 1, verse 23, about how "the virgin will become pregnant and give birth to a son and they will name him Emmanuel." And then Joseph wakes up and goes, "Jesus!"

B: Yeah.

C: Which is not the name Emmanuel.

B: Yeah, that's true. And if you guys want to hear more about the Emmanuel prophecy, we talk all about it in our episode about Isaiah, and we talk about the controversy over the virgin birth versus a young woman birth there. So we don't need to get back into that.

C: Now, we've already talked about James and Jude and Joseph, but in verse 25, still in chapter 1, verse 24 and 25, "When Joseph got up from sleeping, he did as the Lord's angel had commanded him, he married her, but did not know her intimately until she gave birth to a son."

B: Yep.

C: And the thing that I wrote down was that certainly does not sound like an indication of Mary's perpetual virginity, which I know was a very big thing for the Catholic Church.

B: Yeah, it is. And so, of course, they have all sorts of ways to account for what appears to be Jesus's four brothers and at least two sisters. But we don't have to go into that now, because that's a whole other kettle of fish that we can discuss when we talk about James or Jude, which are books attributed to potentially brothers of Jesus.

C: Well, I mean, my question is then, if Matthew is such an early gospel, then why did that become such a cornerstone of Catholicism and specifically of Mary as a biblical figure.

B: Well, I mean, her holiness is so important that there's all sorts of doctrines surrounding that and, I mean, when you have sex seen as a really dirty thing, if you're trying to keep Mary completely free of the stain of any kind of sin whatsoever, that's one that you're gonna want to avoid as well.

C: Fair enough, I suppose. So, down in chapter two, we do get the story of the Wisemen. We get our boys, our unnamed boys, Balthasar, Melchior, and Caspar, who do not get, like this is their only appearance, they're not in Luke.

B: Nope, they're not in Luke. Luke hates Magi.

C: Wow.

B: He hates them.

C: Yeah, I guess so. And I know that even those names are all extra canonical.

B: Oh yeah, and those are the most popular names, but they're not by any stretch the only names attributed to the Magi. You can see some of those other names if you go to my Tumblr blog and search the alphabet of Christmas and look for M. M is for Magi. And you can see me talk about a number of the alternative names for the three Magi.

C: Is there early significance to the gold frankincense and myrrh?

B: Early on, they're probably just picked because they're expensive things. But since then, they've been retrofitted that they're symbolic of the three aspects of Jesus, right? You give gold to a king, frankincense is a thing used by priests, and then myrrh is used to anoint dead bodies, and so Jesus as God, King, and sacrifice, you have the three gifts that match those three things. But it seems likely to me at least that Matthew was just picking three expensive-sounding things as gifts.

C: Again, this is probably something that we're going to get into further down the line when we start really diving into extra canonical stuff. What do they buy with that gold?

B: There's a number of stories about what happens to that stuff like why isn't Jesus rich right is the question there's a number of stories including one in which all the gold frankincense and myrrh are stolen from them by the two thieves who will be crucified on either side of Jesus later on so they they first met him when Jesus was a boy and they stole his expensive things from the magi.

C: The adventures of Jesus when he was a boy. A note that I have here in chapter 2 verse 16 is another extreme reaction from this family. Because we get Herod the Great. This is Herod number one.

B: This is Herod number one.

C: "Then Herod, when he saw that he had been outwitted by the wise men, flew into a rage. He gave orders to massacre all the male children in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under."

B: Right.

C: The thing I highlighted was "outwitted by the wise men," because you gotta expect that.

B: Yeah.

C: They're called wise men.

B: Right, right, right. And so the fact that he is calling for murder of boys two and under is part of why people assume that it might have taken as much as two years for the wise men to arrive and see Jesus. Obviously, Christmas in Epiphany, there's that 12-day span that's supposed to indicate the travel time, but it might have been as much as two years based on this. But also, I actually saw somebody crunch the numbers on this, because you hear, "Oh no, oh, all the babies under..." and first of all, massacring any baby is wrong. I want to take that very controversial stand right now. Do not kill an alive baby. But I saw the actual numbers, and it's probably like 20 or less that would have been in that area.

C: I mean, that's still a lot.

B: It's too many. One is too many.

C: It's about 20 too many. It's about 20 too many, yeah.

B: Yeah, but my point is, like, if you read that and you go, "Oh my gosh, they killed, like, 700 babies," well, no. But still, 20 is too many. We can all agree. We can all agree.

C: I'm glad there's gonna be a section in my notes under Topics of Discussion that says, "How many babies is it okay to kill?"

B: Yeah, the answer is none, guys. It's none, y'all. None. Okay.

C: Uh, so let's, can we jump to chapter three, we get John the Baptist again, who unlike other prophets is not naked, we actually get his clothing described in weird detail.

B: Yeah, and his camel hair eating his locusts and honey. Yeah.

C: Gross. Can we talk about what Jesus is doing in chapter four? [Music: Running with the Devil]

What's up everybody, it's Satan Watch, and here he is in his first starring role.

B: I got another I got another little song you ready? "Hear the snow crunch, see the kids bunch, this is Satan's big scene." This

C: Yeah, oh the devil shows up and this was alluded to in Mark with no details.

B: Right?

C: Matthew's like I got you some details everybody it involves teleportation and temptation your favorite 'tations.

B: All the good tations this is the bit this is the big scene of the devil in the New Testament like you're not gonna, I mean he shows up elsewhere, but like this is the most you're gonna get of him at once. So I hope you guys enjoyed it.

C: I mean it was it was pretty good.

B: Yeah.

C: Uh, we have basically the devil who is in the air tonight as we all know.

B: Yeah.

C: Taking Jesus up to high places and like being like, "Hey jump. Hey jump."

B: What if you jump? What if you jump though?

C: Basically, the devil is like a series of escalating dares.

B: Yeah. Hi, I'm Satan. Welcome to Jackass. Yeah.

C: Pretty, pretty good. This is also where you start to notice, and again, we have been reading the Holman Christian Standard Bible, which is a modern translation, very easy to read. This is where you start to notice that the book of Matthew, probably more than anything else we've read, including Isaiah, suffers from the comparison to the King James Version. There's so much beautiful language in the King James version that has turned into stuff like, "Go away, Satan."

B: Yeah.

C: Which I still like.

B: Go away. Get out of here, Satan.

C: Again, Satan is as big as a kitten.

B: Yeah.

C: So, you know, you wanna just kinda like kick him a little bit.

B: Shoo.

C: Tell him to get out of there.

B: Shoo, Satan.

C: Hey, hey, hey, get off that. Get off that, Satan. Get out here. You know you're not supposed to be on the couch.

B: Leave it. Leave it, Satan.

C: And I feel like that is especially apparent when we get to chapter five, which is the big one.

B: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. The first of the five major discourses in Matthew, including the Sermon on the Mount, which is so big, it's written in huge all caps in the header and the HCSB, which includes all sorts of stuff, all sorts of very famous subsections, including the Beatitudes. Everyone knows the Beatitudes, right? blessed are the poor in spirit, et cetera.

I wanna say a thing that is really funny to me. In the Scholars Version of this, they're trying to get, the Scholars Version always tries, they always dump tradition in favor of a fuller understanding of the nuance of what they're saying, right? We talked about that where they call them Jesus the Anointed instead of Jesus Christ. They call him John the Baptizer instead of John the Baptist tradition and common use has led these words to lose meaning, right? And so for them, they say, "Well, 'blessed' doesn't mean anything in a modern context, and if I say 'blessed,' you're gonna think of the Beatitudes. And like, what does it mean?" And the Scholars Version says, this language is meant to be performative, not in the sense of like, showy and ostentatious and empty, like when we talk about like performative virtue and stuff like that, but performative in the sense that saying the words does the thing that you're saying, right? Like when you say, "I now pronounce you man and wife," right? That's the, that you've done the thing by saying the thing.

And so when when Jesus says, "Blessed are the peacemakers," he's actually blessing the peacemakers, you know what I mean? So the Scholars Version, solution to this, how do we create a performative language that still has meaning to a modern reader who can look at this and say, "What does this mean?" Well, we can say "happy," but happy doesn't carry the connotation of blessed, of #blessed, right? So here's how they do it. Let me read you the Beatitudes in the Scholars Version. "He then began to speak, and this is what he would teach them. 'Congratulations to the foreign spirit, as his domain belongs to them. Congratulations to those who grieve. They will be consoled. Congratulations to the gentle, they will inherit the earth. Congratulations to those who hunger and thirst for justice, they will have a feast." Et cetera.

C: Jesus is down at the front of Target, looking through the dads and grads cards.

B: Yeah, and he's got a t-shirt cannon. He's like, "Who out there is poor in spirit?" "That one's for you, buddy."

C: I mean, look, that is the perfect word for what that means.

B: Yeah.

C: But it is such a different word.

B: It's very jarring, isn't it? And I mean, and I think that's intentional because they really are trying to get you to think about it in a different way. And so, yeah, it's really interesting, but yeah. Congratulations, if you are meek. Like I'm at the raffle, I'm calling out, I'm looking for meek, who's meek? You are, congratulations. You've inherited the Earth.

C: We get to be attitudes, which you're familiar with, that tell you, you know, who all the good, who is congratulated, who's blessed. Then we move into a couple of other big ones. There's believers are the Salt and Light.

B: City on a hill, baby.

C: That was the name of my mom's old church, was Salt and Light. Jesus talking about how he has come to fulfill the law, not destroy it. That's a very important thing if you're writing for a Jewish audience. We get the real hard line bits in here about how whatever you have done in your heart you have already committed the sin.

B: Right, so lust in the heart, murder in the heart, my favorite 90s gem. Lust is in the heart.

C: The way I highlighted this in the HCSB, this comes from verse 22 of chapter five. "Whoever says 'you moron' will be subject to hellfire?"

B: Yeah.

C: So that's, again, very bad news for me specifically.

B: Yeah, it's bad news I feel like for anyone within earshot of this particular podcast, yeah.

C: The weird thing is, this seems like Jesus really laying down the law, but not in the way of, of Romans, which is, you know, for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, therefore you have to repent and accept Jesus. 'Cause there's no like real offer of repentance for this. It's just like, "Hey, this is what you are doing."

B: Right.

C: Just a heads up.

B: Yeah, this is what you're doing, stop also. But yeah, I mean, the idea is like, here's what the law is really about, and you guys think that by following the letter of the law rather than the spirit of the law, that you're saved, and he's like, "That's not how it is," right? Maybe you don't say these curse words you're not supposed to say, but like the anger that you have inside you that would lead you to say them, that's the thing that's, that's what's breaking you.

C: Yeah, Jesus also says, "If you are divorced, you commit adultery," which caused a lot of people to get their heads chopped off a thousand years later.

B: Yeah.

C: Yeah, that's one that I wrote, "Yikes, my guy," in the margin.

B: Many beheadings on that one. And yeah, that one is still causing a lot of trouble. Obviously, within Catholicism, it's not cool to get divorced. It's also true in very many Protestant denominations. I mean, just earlier this year, a spokesperson for the Southern Baptist Convention was like, "I don't care if your husband is beating you up, divorce is not okay."

C: Yikes!

B: Yeah, super yikes. Super yikes.

C: Not trying to be mean to anybody's personal faith and personal path that they walk. I think we can go ahead and give a thumbs down to that one. Thumbs down!

B: Yeah, Jesus did you real dirty with that one, I think. That's just I-M-H-O.

C: Can I ask you a question?

B: Yes.

C: What would you say, based on the reading of Mark, what would you say are the two things Jesus hates most? Besides Peter.

B: It's primarily Peter. I don't know. What are you getting at, Chris?

C: I think money is number one.

B: Oh, yeah.

C: And two is performative faith.

B: Yeah, I would agree. And we see that, we see both of those things in Matthew as well.

C: Yeah. Chapter 6, verse 1, "Be careful not to practice your righteousness "in front of people to be seen by them. "Otherwise you will have no reward "from your Father in heaven. "So whenever you give to the poor, "don't sound a trumpet before you, "as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, "to be applauded by people. "I assure you they've got their reward."

B: Yeah.

C: Look, the first bit of chapter six is all about how performative faith is bad, how just doing it for show, even though you're still doing the thing, is bad. And then we get the model prayer.

B: We do.

C: Jesus goes, "Hey everybody, if you pray, this is what you gotta do." And you've heard this one, you're familiar with it. It's the Lord's prayer.

B: It's the Lord's prayer. The Pater Noster, the Our Father. Yeah, you guys know it. And the HCSP does include in brackets, the four years of the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, which seems to be a later addition. We talked about that.

C: Yeah, because I fell into a talking out loud trap when I went to Easter mass.

B: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, so I mean, probably not part of the earliest manuscripts. It gets added later. It seems to be based on something from Chronicles, but it does exist in certain early, but probably not the earliest manuscripts.

C: We round out chapter six. And again, I just highlighted the chapter heading, the cure for anxiety. Cure for anxiety. Here's what I wrote in the margins of this one. "Oh, so the cure for anxiety is to just stop having anxiety. Thanks, Matthew."

B: Yeah, mine says do yoga. What does yours say?

C: No, mine just says, "Don't worry about it."

B: Yeah.

C: Just don't worry about it.

B: Yeah, stop worrying 'cause you can't change anything. And also birds and flowers, et cetera.

C: I did not, I know that people often look to the Bible for strength in hard times.

[Dusty Rhodes: "And hard times are when a man has worked at a job 30 years, 30 years. They give him a watch, kick him in the butt, and say, 'Hey, a computer took your place, Daddy.' That's hard times."]

C: ...which I, again, is a perfectly reasonable practice, and I've found a lot of comforting things just in our read through so far. Not enough to get dunked in a river just yet, but you know. But I did not find this comforting at all.

B: Birds and flowers, Solomon and all his splendor, he wasn't as good as a flower. Flowers are good. Be more like a flower that does not worry. Have you tried exercise? It's drink more water.

[Voice clip: Tune in tomorrow.]

C: Hey everybody. This is Chris and Benito from a different time.

B: Ooh.

C: We did not know this was going to happen when we started talking about the book of Matthew, but if Mark was our longest episode ever, Matthew is even longer. We ended up with a recording time well over two hours.

B: Yeah.

C: So as you probably noticed from the fact that this is called part one, we have decided to record, to break this up as two episodes. So episodes eight and nine will be about the book of Matthew. But we'll be back with this next week, which is also handy because I'm going to be at HeroesCon next weekend in Charlotte, North Carolina. So if you like the show and you also like comic books, come to HeroesCon and say hi.

B: Yeah, it's almost like the hand of Providence was guiding our verbosity.

C: It's almost like an angel came down and grabbed us by the hair and carried us off.

B: Yeah, they brought us some very good stew.

C: Before we get out of here on this half of the episode, we did want to mention that we have set up a way for you to give us a love offering.

B: Yeah, you can go to ko-fi.com/apocrypals, and then you can make a one-time or even recurring donation in increments of $3. You can give as little as $3. You could give three times $30, or you could do more. As many dollars, as long as it's divisible by three.

C: Could you give as much as $7?

B: You could not, because that's not divisible by three. Seven, in fact, is a prime number.

C: What about seven times 70?

B: That would be 494 plus nine is 13, not divisible by three.

C: Wait, what did you just do?

B: I just did the test to see if a number divisible by three. You add up the digits and if that sum is divisible by three, then the whole number is divisible by three.

C: Does that only work? I've never heard this. Does that only work with the number three?

B: And nine. Three and nine.

C: What?

B: Yeah.

C: I'm learning so much.

B: Yeah, man. People didn't expect to learn basic math on this podcast.

C: That's a trick. That's not basic math. I just have to do the long division in my head. Don't be a jerk about it. Do we have the names of the people who have already kicked in a little bit?

B: Oh, let's see. Well, I think they were all anonymous on the website. I have their information from PayPal, but maybe they don't want me to say it.

C: Yeah, maybe not. So thank you, Theophiloi, for kicking in a little bit of money to help support the show. You can also support the show by just telling a friend about it, saying that you enjoy it, maybe leaving us a review or rating on iTunes or your podcatcher of choice. That would be very nice. And you can also find us in other places. I'm at the-isb.com. Benito, where are you?

B: Uh, I'm on Twitter @benito_sorino. I'm at tumblr @benito-sorino. I'm at Instagram @benito_sorino.

C: And you can of course find supplemental material for the show at apocrypals.tumblr.com where you can see the art that represents things we've talked about on the show, as well as ask us questions or yell at us for getting things wrong. We will be back next time to really dive into the Gospel of Matthew, and we hope that you join us for that. Until then, for Benito Cereno, I'm Chris Sims. Benito, peace be with you.

B: And also with you.

[Music: Live and Let Die]