LITERARY-CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT SOURCES
There are four potential sources for historical reconstruction.
Paul provides us with a version of the words of institution. Matthew, Mark,
and Luke also have versions of the words of institution, situating them
within the context of Jesus' last Passover meal with his disciples, held
one day prior to his crucifixion.1 The goal in this chapter
is to subject these four accounts to a literary-critical analysis. I begin
by comparing the four accounts. Next I examine the literary relationship
between Mark and Matthew, and then move on to consider the more complicated
relationship of Luke's account to Mark and 1 Corinthians 11. Finally I
examine the Last Supper narratives with a view to ascertaining whether
they show evidence of being literarily composite.
A. The Literary Relationships Between the Four Sources
1. A Comparison of the Four Accounts
In the Gospel of Mark, the Last Supper is set within the larger context of the Passion narrative (beginning at 14:1),2 and follows the plot to kill Jesus (14:1-2) and the anointing of Jesus at Bethany, two days prior to his execution. The anointing introduces the reader to the coming events of the Passion, for in 14:9 Jesus says that his anointing is a preparation for his burial. The reader is then reintroduced (see 3:19) to the tragic figure of Judas Iscariot who in 14:10-11 sets out to betray Jesus. Mark then has Jesus send two of his disciples into Jerusalem to meet a man at whose house they are to eat the Passover. This happens on Nisan 14, "the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread when they sacrificed the Passover lambs" (Mark 14:12). The man who will meet them will be carrying a jar of water, and they are to say to him, "The teacher asks, where is my guest room where I am to eat the Passover with my disciples." Upon being led to an upper room of a house, furnished and ready, the two are to make the necessary preparations. Everything happens as Jesus said, and the two disciples prepare Passover. That evening Jesus and his disciples arrive.
In 14:18 Jesus and the twelve are already reclining at the table eating, when Jesus announces that he knows that someone eating with him--one who dips into the bowl with him--will betray him. The group is saddened, and Jesus pronounces a woe on his betrayer (14:21): "The Son of Man will be led away just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man; it would be better for him if he had not been born."
At this point Jesus recites the words of institution. While they are eating, Jesus takes bread, gives thanks, breaks it and gives it to them saying, "Take; this is my body." Then Jesus takes the cup, gives thanks and gives it to the disciples; they all drink from it. Concerning the cup he says, "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many." Finally, Jesus announces that he will not drink from the fruit of the vine again until that day when he will drink it anew in the Kingdom of God, after which the group sings a hymn and goes out to the Mount of Olives.
Matthew's presentation is in outline identical with that of Mark. Like Mark, Matthew begins with the plot to kill Jesus, moves to the anointing at Bethany, to Judas' agreement to betray Jesus, to the preparation of the Passover, and finally to the Last Supper itself, after which the group departs for the Mount of Olives.
There are differences, however, between the Matthean words of institution and the Markan. In 26:26, Matthew has the enclitic de, rather than Mark's kai,, and identifies explicitly Jesus as the "Handelner."3 He also has a kai, before the verb "bless," and instead of the Markan indicative uses the aorist participle. Also instead of Mark's simple "take," Matthew has "take, eat," in addition to identifying the recipients as "the disciples," different from Mark's "them." In 26:27, Matthew again has a kai, before the verb, in this case "he gave thanks," and in the introduction to the word over the cup he has Jesus giving a command to all the disciples to drink from the cup, whereas Mark uses the indicative. This necessitates Matthew's use of "saying" to introduce this unit of direct speech. In 26:28, Matthew has an enclitic ga,r after "this," and does not have the Markan "and he said to them." This is understandable, since in Matthew's account Jesus is still speaking and therefore it is unnecessary to introduce direct speech again. In the Matthean text peri, is used instead of the Markan u`pe,r in the phrase "shed for many"; Matthew also has "for the forgiveness of sins" completing the participial phrase.
Matthew's account of Jesus' eschatological saying, situated as in the Markan text after the words of institution, differs to some extent from its Markan parallel. Matthew's introduction to the saying (26:29) does not have "truly," unlike Mark's account, having in its place the enclitic de,; Matthew also omits "that." The differences between the Matthean and Markan versions of the saying are as follows: Matthew has "from now on," "this" modifying "fruit of the vine" and "with you," whereas Mark does not have these; rather than the Markan "in the Kingdom of God" Matthew has "in the Kingdom of my father."
It is clear that overall Matthew's account differs from Mark in only a few details. Two questions arise from this conclusion. How is it that the Matthean words of institution and his version of the eschatological saying are so literarily close to Mark, yet still contain some minor differences? Secondly, what value is Matthew's account as a potential source for this historical study? I shall answer both of these questions in due time.
In Luke's account, the decision of the chief priests and the scribes to execute Jesus and Judas' plot to betray Jesus (22:1-6) are combined. Then follows the account of the Passover preparation--substantially the same as that in Mark and Matthew except that the disciples are identified as Peter and John. Luke omits the anointing at Bethany, and situates the announcement of the betrayal after the meal.
Next in the sequence of events, Jesus and his disciples are reclining to eat the Passover meal. At first glance, Luke 22:15-18 appears to be without parallel in Matthew's and Mark's gospels. Jesus says that "he greatly desired" to eat this Passover with his disciples before he is to suffer, since he will not eat again until it finds fulfilment in the Kingdom of God. Then Jesus takes the cup, gives thanks and commands his disciples to take the cup and share it among themselves. After the distribution of the cup he adds that he will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God has come.
All that is obviously similar in Luke 22:15-18 to material in Mark and Matthew is the eschatological saying in Luke 22:18 = Mark 14:25 and Matthew 26:29. But Luke places this before the breaking of the bread, whereas Mark and Matthew place it after. The differences between the Lukan and Markan/Matthean versions of this eschatological saying are relatively insignificant but more numerous than the differences between Mark and Matthew.
In Luke 22:19-20 there is a shorter textual tradition ending the Lukan Last Supper with 22:19a and a longer text including 22:19b-20. The longer text of Luke 22:19-20 has more parallels to Mark and Matthew than the previous unit, Luke 22:15-18; it also overlaps with Paul's account of the words of institution.
Luke's version of the introduction to the word over the bread in 22:19 parallels both Mark and Matthew and 1 Corinthians at various points. Luke has "and taking bread" (parallel to Mark and Matthew, but different from 1 Corinthians "and he took"); in Luke's version Jesus then "gave thanks" (different from Mark and Matthew "blessed," but parallel to 1 Corinthians), broke it (parallel to Mark, Matthew and 1 Corinthians) and "distributed" it (parallel to Mark, but different from Matthew's aorist participle "distributing" and 1 Corinthians, which omits it). Luke identifies the ones to whom the bread was given as "them" (parallel to Mark, but different from Matthew "the disciples"). The saying over the bread is introduced with the participle "saying" (different from Mark, Matthew and 1 Corinthians "and he said").
Luke's version of the word over the bread parallels Mark and Matthew as far as they go: "this is my body." (The personal pronoun "my" is next to "this" in 1 Corinthians—tou/to, mou--rather than "body" in Luke—sw/ma, mou.) Luke adds, however, the phrase "which is given for you," parallel to 1 Corinthians "for you," and a command to repeat, parallel to 1 Corinthians.
The introduction to the word over the cup in Luke departs from Mark and Matthew but parallels 1 Corinthians, the only differences between the two being minor. Luke's word over the cup likewise is parallel to 1 Corinthians for the most part, differing from Mark and Matthew, again the only differences between Luke and 1 Corinthians being minor. Luke, however, adds to the word over the cup the phrase "shed on behalf of you," parallel to Mark and Matthew, but different from 1 Corinthians (absent). The differences between Luke, Mark and Matthew with respect to the participial phrase are minimal. Unlike Mark and Matthew, Luke has no eschatological saying after the word over the cup.
In Luke's account Jesus next says that the one who is to betray him is with him at the table, and pronounces a woe on him, referring to himself as the Son of Man. Luke's announcement of the betrayal differs from the Markan and Matthean versions in that it is positioned after the words of institution, so chronologically speaking Jesus and his disciples finish the Passsover meal before Jesus announces his foreknowledge of his betrayal. If Luke 22:22 is left out of consideration, there is only one linguistic commonality between Mark and Matthew and Luke, the verb "they began" in Luke 22:23, parallel to Mark 14:19 and Matthew 26:22. Otherwise there is nothing is these verses to suggest literary dependence. Luke 22:22 and Mark 14:21/Matthew 26:24, however, are very close linguistically. The distribution of common words among Mark 14:18b-21/Matthew 26:21b-25 and Luke 22:21-23 is, therefore, very uneven: with one exception it is concentrated in Luke 22:22 = Mark 14:21/Matthew 26:24.
Luke reports a dispute over who among the disciples would be the greatest. Jesus replies that the greatest is as the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. Jesus then confers on them a kingdom, just as the Father has done for him, so that the disciples will eat and drink at Jesus' table when the reign of God will have come, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. The foretelling of Peter's denial follows upon this, and then Jesus says some final words in which he again predicts his approaching death. Finally, they leave, and go to the Mount of Olives. Mark and Matthew have Jesus leave the Upper Room immediately after finishing the meal.
The literary questions that arise from an examination of Luke's account are many and complicated. First, the textual question of the originality of 22:19b-20 must be broached. Then the literary status of 22:15-18 will have to be considered: Does this section represent a Lukan redaction of Mark, or does it derive from the Lukan special tradition? Thirdly, assuming the originality of Luke 22:19b-20 an inquiry into its literary origin must be undertaken. Fourthly, I shall investigate the literary relationship between Luke 22:15-18 and 22:19-20: Luke differs from Mark and Matthew in including an account of events preliminary to the words of institution. Finally, I shall inquire into the relationship between Luke 22:21-23 and Mark 14:18b-21/Matthew 26:21b-25: Are these two accounts literarily related?
The account of the words of institution in 1 Corinthians, which Paul says that he has received from the Lord and has delivered to the Corinthian church is given in the context of the correction of abuses at the Lord's Supper.4 In taking steps to rectify this problem Paul reiterates for them the version of the words of institution that he gave them previously.
Paul's account offers several parallels to Luke's. There are, however, some differences between 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 and the synoptics: Unlike the synoptics 1 Corinthians begins with the simple phrase "The Lord Jesus in the night in which he was betrayed"; the introduction to the word over the bread in 1 Corinthians, unlike Mark, Luke and Matthew, consists of a participle and three finite verbs; Paul's word over the bread is different from those of Luke, Mark and Matthew, being most similar to Luke's. 1 Corinthians concludes, different from Luke, Mark and Matthew, with a second command to repeat: "Do this as often as you drink in remembrance of me." According to Paul, whenever the Corinthians eat the bread or drank the cup they proclaim the Lord's death until he comes. The idea is that the Lord's Supper proclaims the kerygma, the Lord's death, every time it is celebrated. The clause "until he comes" is reminiscent of the eschatological saying found in Luke 22:15-18, Mark 14:25 and Matthew 26:29.
The central literary question that emerges from this brief analysis of Paul's account is its relation to Luke. Because the tradition of the words of institution preserved in 1 Corinthians has such obvious parallels to its Lukan counterpart, a determination of the exact relationship between them is needed. In the analysis of the literary origin of Luke 22:19-20, however, I shall, as a part of my inquiry, answer this very question. There is no need, therefore, to deal with the Pauline text separately.
2. The Literary Relationship between Matthew and Mark
The Matthean version of the words of institution is related literarily to the Markan; the two texts are practically identical. Matthew reproduces 32 of the 49 words of the Markan account, with four variants and 13 differences.5 A literary relationship also exists between the Markan and Matthean versions of the eschatological saying. What is the nature of this relationship? Assuming Markan priority, the answer to this question is that the literary relatedness is the result of Matthew's taking over the Markan account.
The Matthean words of institution and eschatological saying, however, differ from Mark at certain points. What is the origin of these differences? If Matthew relied upon Mark as a source, why did he change it? A further question follows from this one. Are the differences to be accounted for by postulating an independent, non-Markan tradition or Matthean redaction?
If Matthew introduces non-Markan tradition into the Markan source, it would be consistent with his redactional method.6 A Matthean tendency is to conflate and abbreviate parallel sources.7 This is evident in his redactional treatment of "Q" and Mark. Knowing how Matthew arrived at his final account is relevant to a historical reconstruction of the Last Supper; if he preserves material from an independent source, this would be potential data for reconstructing the event. But if the differences are a result of Matthean redaction, then Matthew's account has only secondary value.8
Virtually all exegetes have concluded correctly that Matthew 26:26-29 is a redaction of Mark.9 The differences can be accounted for satisfactorily as Matthean redactional alterations to Mark. There is no need to postulate the existence of an independent Matthean source.10
3. The Literary Relationship between Luke and Mark and Luke and 1 Corinthians
The Lukan text is similar to but different from Mark, and it has undeniable parallels to the version of the words of institution in 1 Corinthians. By far it presents the most problems with respect to its evaluation as a potential source for historical reconstruction.
I begin with the textual problem. Is the shorter or the longer text more original? Before 1950, the general consensus was in favour of the shorter text; Luke 22:19b-20 was judged to be a later interpolation. Since that time most exegetes have decided in favour of the longer text, principally on grounds of textual evidence: the Greek manuscript evidence supports the longer text.11 As Fitzmyer points out, the principle of the lectio difficilior also suggests that the longer text should have priority. It is more understandable that the two cups in Luke would be reduced to one, in assimilation to the other accounts.12 An objection to the greater originality of the longer text is that 22:19b-20 appears to be an interpolation from the accounts in 1 Corinthians 11:23-25 and Mark 14:24b. For the moment suffice it to say that, even assuming that there is a literary dependence of Luke 22:19b-20 on 1 Corinthians 11:23-25 and Mark 14:23a, 24b, one cannot conclude that this is evidence of textual interpolation. It allows such an interpretation but does not compel it. The manuscript evidence in favour of the longer text outweighs this consideration. I shall proceed on the premise that the longer text is the more original.
What is the literary status of Luke 22:15-18? It has been suggested that 22:15-18 is a redactional composition based on Mark 14:22-25. What is common to Mark 14:22-25 and Luke 22:15-18 that one might conclude that there exists a literary dependence? Both have a version of Jesus'eschatological saying of not drinking from the fruit of the vine until the coming of the Kingdom of God. The two versions have a certain amount of linguistic similarity. Luke, however, places his eschatological saying after the distribution of the first cup--whereas in Mark there is only one cup mentioned--and has a similar eschatological saying uttered by Jesus situated before any mention of the bread or the cup: "I shall not eat it until it is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God" (22:16), introduced by Jesus' statement that he greatly desired to eat the Passover with his disciples. There is also some--but not much--similarity between Luke 22:17 and Mark 14:23. If there is a Lukan literary dependence, one must postulate significant Lukan redactional activity.
According to Martin Dibelius, who is followed by Kuemmel, Luke is supposed to have taken a version of the words of institution and joined them to a Passover framework, a literary creation of his own based on the Markan version of the eschatological saying.13 Mark's literary fault, from the Lukan perspective, is to introduce the Last Supper as a Passover, but not subsequently describe a Passover meal. Luke remedies this by introducing an eschatological saying of Jesus on the Passover lamb (22:15-16) and another on one of the Passover cups (22:17-18), both sayings being variations on Mark 14:25. Only after having established for the reader that the meal was paschal, does Luke give the words of institution (22:19-20).
Pierre Benoit likewise depicts Luke as a corrector of Mark; as part of this corrective process, according to Benoit, Luke creates 22:15-18 from Mark 14:22-25.14 In support of this view, he points to the Lukan linguistic features of 22:15-18, such as the avoidance of semitisms, the use of the Hebraism "I have greatly desired," the absolute use of "to suffer," and the use of the verb diameri,zein.15 Benoit accounts for the two or three Aramaisms (the presence of which was untypical of the Lukan style) as borrowings from Mark.16 As a redactor of Mark, Luke intends to expand on what in Mark is open to misunderstanding. Mark's account of the Last Supper is a liturgical formula, according to Benoit, has been stripped of any element that does not have a liturgical function. As such it scarcely resembles a Passover meal. Luke, however, wants his readers to understand that Jesus' Last Supper was a Passover; he does this in order to make the theological point that the Last Supper represents the eschatological replacement of the Passover meal. So by having Jesus make reference to the Passover lamb in Luke 22:15, Luke ensures that his readers understand that the bread and the wine over which Jesus spoke the words of institution (which, according to Benoit, Luke took from Paul, not Mark) were elements of a Passover meal. Benoit's view is, therefore, similar to that of Dibelius; the only difference is that Benoit claims that Luke is making a theological point, while for Dibelius Luke's primary concern is for narrative and historical consistency.
Pesch also argues that Luke 22:15-18 is a Lukan redaction based on Mark 14:22-25, but holds that Luke's aim is to portray the Last Supper as a farewell meal--in the literary form of the symposium--in order to allow Jesus to communicate some important theological points.17 Luke 22:15-18 fills out the too brief account of the Last Supper in Mark. Pesch, like Benoit, explains the non-Lukan features of the text as borrowings from Mark and the Lukan features as from the Lukan redactor.
A similar approach is taken by Joachim Wank, who likewise begins with the assumption that Luke heavily edits the Markan text.18 There are other explanations of the Lukan redactional aim, some different from and some complementary to those mentioned above.19 All have in common the view that Luke 22:15-18 is a creation of the Lukan redactor from Mark 14:22-25.
Before proceeding further, I should orientate the reader. If it is provable that Luke 22:15-18 is a product of Lukan redaction, it would have to be eliminated as a potential source for historical reconstruction. If, on the other hand, it can be demonstrated that Luke 22:15-18 is literarily independent, the possibility that it is an independent account of what took place on night of the Last Supper must be reckoned with.
The view that Luke is literary dependent on Mark is quite weak for two reasons. First, the arguments supporting it tend to be precariously circular: one assumes that Luke made use of Mark, and then one attempts to discover how he modified his source and to what end. Prima facie, the Lukan narrative 22:15-18 appears to be an independent account with tradition-historical connections with Mark (thus accounting for the parallels on the level of individual words and phrases). The hypotheses offered as explanations of the Lukan redactional aim really only hang by a thread.
Secondly, a considerable body of positive evidence can be produced leading to the conclusion that Luke 22:15-18 is literarily independent of Mark.20 There are two classes of such evidence. On the one hand, there are general considerations concerning the Lukan redactional tendencies. An examination of the use of the Markan material in Luke indicates that 22:15-18 can hardly be a Markan redaction. Leaving out of consideration the question of proto-Luke, it is clear that Luke, unlike Matthew, keeps Markan material separate from non-Markan21 and follows Mark's order when he does include Markan material. There are four blocks of Markan material taken over by Luke Luke 4:31-6:11 = Mark 1:21-3:6; Luke 8:4-9:50 = Mark 4:1-25; 3:31-35; 4:35-6:44; 8:27-9:40; Luke 18:15-43 = Mark 10:13-52; Luke 19:29-22:13 = Mark 11:1-14:16.22 In taking over each block, Luke faithfully follows the Markan order, possibly with two minor exceptions:23 Luke 6:17-19 = Mark 3:7-11a; Luke 8:19-21 = Mark 3:31-35. Luke 6:12-16 is parallel to Mark 3:13-19, so Luke 6:17-19 = Mark 3:7-11a could be interpreted as a change in the Markan order; similarly, Luke 8:19-21 may represent a transposition of Markan material into another block of Markan material.24
It is clear that if Luke transposes Mark's material at all he does so only rarely; in general he is faithful to the Markan order. But if his account of the Last Supper is based on Mark then it must be concluded that Luke deviates from the Markan order not fewer than four times: the placing of the eschatological saying before the words of institution; the announcement of the betrayal following the words of institution (22:21-22); the lament over the traitor preceding the disciples' speculation concerning his identity (22:22-23); the prophecy of Peter's denial coming before the group left for Gethsemane. Four such transpositions of the Markan order is uncharacteristic. When Luke consistently deviates from the Markan order he cannot be using Mark as a source but is drawing on non-Markan material.
It is also untypical of Luke to create a completely new unit of tradition from material in Mark. Luke's respect for Mark as a source tells against the hypothesis that Luke 22:15-18 is a Lukan redaction based on Mark 14:22-25. One need only compare, for example, Luke 22:7-14 with its parallel in Mark 14:12-17 to appreciate the stark contrast between a Lukan redaction of Mark and Lukan special tradition.25 Moreover, while Luke has doublets, the doubling of Mark's eschatological saying is uncharacteristic; Luke's doublets have not been created intentionally out of one saying taken from a single source. Their origin is a result of taking over two similar sayings from two different sources.26 That Luke's tendency is to shorten his Markan source, not to lengthen it confirms this observation.27
On the other hand, considerations of the Lukan preferred vocabulary and style support the view that Luke 22:15-18 is not a Lukan redactional construction based on Mark 14:22-25. It is possible to differentiate in Luke 22:15-18 Lukan redaction from Luke's sources. Having done this one discovers that there are too many instances of non-Lukan and non-Markan usage for this passage to be a Lukan redaction of Mark. This means that Pesch's reconstuction of the sources for Luke's redactional composition, for example, verges on complete supposition.28
Vincent Taylor estimates that the percentage of common vocabulary in Luke 22:15-18 and Mark 14:22-25 is too low to ground an argument for literary dependence; the two have only 34 words out of 91 (37.3%) in common.29 If the passage is a Lukan redaction of Mark, one would expect a higher percentage of linguistic agreement.
Jeremias and Schuermann, moreover, give ample evidence of the pre-Lukan and non-Markan origins of 22:15-18.30 The omission of avmh,n is pre-Lukan. Luke takes avmh,n over from Mark three of five times, translating it in the remaining two as "truly" (avlhqw.j). This means that the Lukan "for I say to you" (22:16, 18) is not an example of the deliberate avoidance by the Lukan redactor of Mark's avmh.n I say to you" (14:25); it derives from the Lukan special tradition. Luke also normally places a demonstrative adjective after a substantive, rather than before, as in 22:15 (tou.to to. pa,sca); this is without parallel in Mark. The phrase "I say...to you" (22:16, 18) is very prevalent in Luke's gospel and, since it is not prevalent in Acts, it is likely pre-Lukan. (The Lukan preference is the use of pros + acc. after a verb of saying.) In addition, the use of ga,r in le,gw ga.r u`mi.n (for I say to you), different from Mark 14:25 avmh.n le,gw u`mi/n (amen I say to you), is not an indication of Lukan redaction. As stated above, Luke does not tend to replace the Markan avmh,n with a more graecized equivalent. ga,r is part of the Lukan special tradition. ouv mh, (22:16, 18) likewise is pre-Lukan, since Luke generally avoids it. It is unlikely, therefore, that in 22:18 he would replace replace Mark's ouvke,ti ouv mh. (14:25) with it. The use of e[wj o[tou (until) in 22:16 (rather than e[wj ou- in 22:18) is also non-Lukan; it is again unlikely that in 22:16 Luke would change the Markan "until that day" to e[wj o[tou; this points to the latter's pre-Lukan origin. Luke does not use the verb euvcariste,w (to give thanks) absolutely; he prefers to use the verbs euvcariste,w and euvloge,w (to bless) with the dative. One could also add: epiqumew (to desire) with the infinitve (22:15) is pre-Lukan; the construction diameri,sate eivj e`autou,j (used in the sense of to distribute) is foreign to the Lukan usage. These data point to the origin of Luke 22:15-18 in the Lukan special tradition.
Now, as Schuermann recognized, not all these instances have the same probability of deriving from the Lukan special tradition; Schuermann often ranks individual cases as more or less probable. Sometimes Jeremias and he disagree concerning which linguistic usages are distinctive of the Lukan special tradition (e.g., avpo tou/ nu/n in 22:18). And in some cases Pesch suggests plausible alternative explanations for the apparent non-Lukan character of a Lukan redaction of Mark. He also cites many examples of Lukan redaction. But despite these critical disagreements there are enough instances of non-Lukan usage that cannot be explained as deriving from Mark to justify the conclusion that Luke 22:15-18 is lightly-edited Lukan special tradition. As Schuermann put it, "Die literarkritische Untersuchung hat zu dem Ergebnis gefuehrt, dass Lk 22,15 eine von Luk leicht redigierte und von Mk 14:25 literarisch unabhaengige T [radition] bewahrt ist, von der ein Rudiment in teilweise urspruenglicherer Fassung auch noch Mk 14,25 auf uns gekommen ist."31
Schuermann offers further evidence against Luke 22:15-18 being viewed as constructed from Mark 14:22-25. First, if the Lukan redactor created the eschatological sayings found in 22:16 and 22:18 from Mark 14:25, he would not likely have made the two sayings unparallel, as they are in their present forms. Secondly, the overlap in vocabulary between Mark 14:22-24 and Luke 22:15-18 could be the result of both reflecting common liturgical usage. This would explain equally well the parallels between the two.
On the basis of the above considerations I am justified in holding that Luke 22:15-18 is literarily unrelated to Mark 14:22-25; it must be assigned to the Lukan special tradition. From a historical point of view this means that there are at least two independent traditions of the events of the Last Supper.
What will concern us now is the literary origin of Luke 22:19-20. This Lukan unit has parallels to the accounts in Mark and 1 Corinthians. For the sake of simplicity, I shall deal with Luke 22:19a and 22:19b-20 separately.
In Luke 22:19a, 12 of the 14 words have parallels to Mark 14:22, one variant, one different. How does one explain such extensive linguistic overlap? Luke's use of Markan material en bloc ends with Luke 22:13 or 22:14; his Passion narrative, including Luke 22:15-18, is Lukan special tradition. But could he have introduced Markan material at particular points within his non-Markan Passion narrative, or is there some other way to explain the parallels?32
Luke does not normally use Mark in a piecemeal fashion, removing individual verses and amalgamating them with non-Markan material. He keeps the Markan material separate from his other sources, and adheres closely to the Markan order in the arrangement of the pericopes. Yet there is evidence that there are individual units of Markan material inserted into the Lukan Passion narrative. (The major criterion for suspecting a Markan insertion is a large percentage of common vocabulary.) Taylor provides the following list of possible Markan insertions:33 Luke 22:22 = Mark 14:21; Luke 22:34 = Mark 14:30; Luke 22:46b = Mark 14:38; Luke 22:50b = Mark 14:47; Luke 22:52-53a = Mark 14:48f.; Luke 22:54b-61 = Mark 14:54, 67-72; Luke 23:3 = Mark 15:2; Luke 23:26 = Mark 15:21; Luke 23:44f. = Mark 15:33, 38; Luke 23:50-54 = Mark 15:42-47; Luke 24:10 = Mark 16:1.34 Whether all of these are genuine Lukan interpolations of Mark is debatable, but some indubitably are. It seems probable, therefore, that Luke 22:19a is also a Markan insertion.
Indeed many have argued that Luke 22:19a is a mixed text, combining elements from Mark and 1 Corinthians with a decided preference for the Markan version. (Luke would have followed the Pauline account only in his use of "He gave thanks" instead of the Markan "he blessed.") This popular explanation of the data is taken by Pesch; he breaks the Lukan text down into its sources, differentiating among Mark, 1 Corinthians and Lukan redaction.35
Why Luke would interpolate Markan material and then depart from the Markan text, however, is problematic. The verbal agreement (12 of 14 words) between Luke 22:19a and Mark 14:22 seems too great not to suspect literary dependence. But a motive is lacking.36
Schuermann argues that the parallels between Luke 22:19a and Mark 14:22 are coincidental and that, in fact, Luke is following his special tradition.37 Luke 22:19a uncharacteristically begins with kai,, parallel to Mark, suggesting that he is dependent on Mark. But Schuermann points out that 22:15, which he rightly concludes is Lukan special tradition, also begins with kai,, and Luke may, therefore, be dependent on the same source for 22:19a. Moreover, the phrase "and taking" (kai. labw.n) is a traditional formula for meal narratives, and, in fact, Mark's "and while they were eating he took" (kai. evsqio,ntwn auvtw/n labw.n), functioning as an introduction to the words of institution, is redactional. Similarly, Luke's use of euvcaristh,saj is not to be understood as an abandonment of Mark in favour of 1 Corinthians. Luke avoids the absolute use of euvchariste,w, preferring to use it with the dative. It is unlikely that he would favour euvchariste,w (to give thanks) over the Markan euvloge,w (to bless), especially as at other times he takes over the Markan euvloge,w (Luke 9:16 = Mark 6:41). The same reasoning applies to Luke's supposed omission of the Markan "take." Schuermann argues that, since Luke uses "take" in 22:17, there is no conceivable reason why he would omit the Markan "take" in 22:19a. Rather, "Die Auffordungsformel haette in Luke 19a gut von der von Luke 17 entsprochen."38 Finally, the Lukan "saying" unexpectedly differs from the Markan and Pauline "and he said." In summary, according to Schuermann, there is no reason to assume that Luke is dependent on Mark or the tradition represented by 1 Corinthians.
In support of this conclusion, Taylor suggests that the agreement of 12 of 14 words is not so significant when one takes into account that a standardized vocabulary for the events of the Last Supper was bound to emerge. The fact that Luke 22:19a has 9 words in common with 1 Corinthians 11 is evidence that a stylized vocabulary was in place.39
The data can be interpreted in two incompatible ways. The burden of proof, nonetheless, rests on the shoulders of the one who holds that, in spite of an agreement of 12 of 14 words with Mark 14:22a and one with 1 Corinthians 11:23a, Luke 22:19a is derived from Lukan special tradition and is not dependent on either Mark or 1 Corinthians. Before deciding this question, however, it is advisable to examine the literary origins of Luke 22:19b-20. Since the traditions of the words of institution were transmitted as units, if there is substantial evidence that Luke 22:19b-20 is Lukan special tradition, it follows that 22:19a likely is as well.
Is there evidence in Luke 22:19b-20 of a vocabulary and a style that is neither Markan, Pauline nor explainable as Lukan redaction? Unlike Luke 22:19a, Luke 22:19b-20 stands very close to the words of institution cited by Paul in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26. Of the 28 words in the Lukan text, 25 stand parallel to, two are variants of, and one is different from 1 Corinthians, whereas four stand parallel to, five are variants of, and 19 are different from Mark.40 In spite of these data, Schuermann and Jeremias argue that Luke and the tradition represented by 1 Corinthians 11 are not literarily related but reach back tradition-historically to a common source. Schuermann further concludes that with a few exceptions Luke is closer to the earlier tradition.
Jeremias and Schuermann cite many examples of non-Lukan usage in 22:19b-20 unparalleled in Mark and 1 Corinthians.41 Luke normally uses the possessive pronouns predicatively and pronominally, but not attributively, as in 22:19b. Luke usually prefers the word order w`sau,twj kai.--as found in 1 Corinthians 11:23--rather than kai.…..w`sau,twj (22:20); the copula is missing in 22:20b, which is unusual for Luke, since he tends to add it to his sources. These data suggest that 22:19b-20 derives from the Lukan special tradition. One can add to this evidence Taylor's observation that Luke's adjectival participle dido,menon, since it is found in neither Mark nor 1 Corinthians, suggests the use of an independent source.42
The awkwardness of 22:20 is additional proof that that 22:19b-20 is not Lukan redaction, but possibly taken over by him from already-established liturgical tradition. The nominative participle "shed on behalf of you" agrees in case with "the cup" not, as expected, with the dative "my blood," thus giving the confused impression that the cup is shed and not the blood.43 Luke, as a redactor, would likely have been more careful in his work.44 According to Jeremias the use of the nominative, rather than the syntactically correct dative, would not have been intolerable in a liturgical setting. Three factors bear on this. First, in the liturgy, the participial phrase would likely have been heard independently of the previous sentence. Secondly, in the nominative the phrase would stand parallel to the participial construction of the word over the bread, thus creating symmetrical forms. Thirdly, the familiarity with a long established liturgical formula would have contributed to making the grammatical error inoffensive to the hearer.
Paul's version of the words of institution in 1 Corinthians is similarly non-Pauline in character. Paul himself claims that the tradition that he passed on to the Corinthians is what he received from the Lord (11:23). The terms "to receive" (paralamba,nw) and "to pass on" (paradi,domai) are technical terms in Judaism for the receiving and passing on of oral tradition, corresponding to the Hebrew terms -l rsm and !m lbq.45 Schuermann presents sufficient evidence that the words of institution in 1 Corinthians have many non-Pauline features.46 The conclusion follows that what Paul delivered to the Corinthians was traditional material, which he believed originated with Jesus.
The non-Lukan character of 22:19b-20 with its divergences from 1 Corinthians and Mark along with the traditional character of the Pauline account indicate that Luke 22:19b-20 is part of a liturgical tradition related to, but literarily independent of the form of the tradition in 1 Corinthians.47 It is part of a "third variant" of the liturgical eucharistic formula.48
It follows from this that Luke 22:19a is also part of this third variant of the words of institution. The Lukan form of the tradition is literarily independent of those found in Mark and 1 Corinthians. When dealing with liturgical tradition verbal identity is deceptive as an indicator of literary dependence. Luke's version is, therefore, a potential source for a historical reconstruction of the Last Supper, along with Mark 14:22-25 and 1 Corinthians 11:23-25.
An important question for the historian in dealing with the Lukan text is the relationship between Luke 22:15-18 and Luke 22:19-20. There are two options: the passages are related chronologically as two parts of the same meal, or they are related thematically as two versions of the same meal. If the former, the cups in 22:17 and 22:20 are two different cups, drunk at two different times of the meal; if the latter, the cups are the same cup. At this point, I shall restrict ourselves to a study of the redactional-critical relation of Luke 22:15-18 and 22:19-20. Later I shall take up the question of the history of the tradition of these two literary units.
Luke's stated purpose in writing his gospel is to produce an orderly account after having investigated everything thoroughly (1:1-3). His sources were previous attempts to put together an account of things as handed down by the eyewitnesses and servants of the word. It would seem inconsistent for Luke to place two parallel accounts of the Last Supper together without giving sufficient indication of this intention. Luke 22:15-20 ought to be read as a single chronological sequence. This is confirmed by the chronological consistency of the account. The key transition in the narrative is 22:20, where the phrase "after eating" denotes that the meal has been completed. It is clear from the context that the two cups are not intended by Luke to be taken as the same cup. The cup in 22:17 corresponds to the first or second Passover cup, whereas the cup in 22:20 corresponds to the cup of blessing, drunk after the meal.49
I come now to the final question pertaining to the Lukan narrative. Is Luke's version of the announcement of the betrayal literarily dependent on Mark 14:18b-21? If the answer is affirmative, there is a further question: How exactly are the two literarily related? Does Luke insert Mark's announcement of the betrayal after the words of institution? Or does Luke take over a version of the announcement of the betrayal from his special source, where it is positioned after the words of institution, and then makes individual interpolations from Mark into the text? The implications of this question for historical reconstruction are significant: if the Lukan special source has the announcement of the betrayal after the words of institution, there is a chronological disagreement between two traditions of equal weight; but if Luke as a redactor is responsible for the interpolation of the Markan announcement of the betrayal into his special source, where none existed previously, the Markan order has priority and the Lukan must be judged to be secondary.
I begin by observing that the Lukan unit 22:21-35 appears to be a self-contained, non-Markan block of material, which means that Luke's announcement of the betrayal derives from the Lukan special tradition.50 The burden of proof is on the one who claims that Luke 22:21-23 is a redactional reworking and interpolation of Mark. To refute this there must be sufficient linguistic evidence of its Markan origin--not just similarity in content--, evidence of Lukanisms in 22:21-23 and no unexplainable deviations from the Lukan style and vocabulary. These conditions must be met in order to overturn the conclusion of its origin in the Lukan special tradition.
Luke 22:22 has significant linguistic similarity to its counterpart in Mark 14:21. The two versions of Jesus' woe against the betrayer are very close. Of the 18 words in Luke 22:22, 12 stand parallel to Mark, two are variants and four are different.51 Most of the differences can be explained, according to Schuermann, as Lukan redaction. Characteristically Luke's version is shorter the Markan.52
Rehkopf seeks to prove, however, that Mark 14:21 and Luke 22:22 are two variants of an Aramaic original.53 His argument is feasible but not sufficient to overturn the conclusion that the two are literarily related. With such linguistic similarity between Mark and Luke and indisputable examples of Lukan redaction in Luke 22:22, the Markan origin of Luke 22:22 seems undeniable.
Luke 22:21, 23 are dissimilar enough from their Markan counterparts that one must either posit significant Lukan redaction, as Schuermann does, or declare that they are literarily unrelated to Mark. There is little, however, that commends the hypothesis that Luke 22:21 and 23 are a redaction of Mark 14:18b-20. The only common linguistic feature is the verb "they began" in Luke 22:23, parallel to Mark 14:22. But this is scarcely sufficient to prove that there is literary dependence. Schuermann attempts to show that the differences between Luke and Mark are not inconsistent with what one would expect from a Lukan redaction, but he is only partially successful.54
The decisive question is whether there is evidence that Luke 22:21-23 derives from the Lukan special tradition. Both Rehkopf and Jeremias point to several features that suggest that Luke is working from a non-Markan source. Although the connective plh,n is commonplace in Luke's gospel, Rehkopf and Jeremias argue convincingly that its use in Luke 22:21 is not a result of Lukan redactional preference.55 Similarly, Luke has no preference for the use of ivdou, (behold) without a verb (22:21). Luke is also unlikely to have changed Mark's version of the saying since he normally shows greater reverence for the words of Jesus (22:21). The rendering of the future by a genitive speaks against Lukan redaction, because Luke prefers to give the future by means of a future participle or the use of me,llw (to be about to) (22:21). The use of the reflexive pronoun with a preposition is likely pre-Lukan, since Luke generally avoids this structure (22:23).56 Although Schuermann recognizes the validity of some of these arguments, he judges that Luke is still capable of such stylistic features and vocabulary.
The linguistic evidence is ambiguous. Schuermann and Rehkopf argue for opposite conclusions, which suggests that the evidence does not clearly point one way or the other. Nevertheless, it would seem that the case for Markan redaction has not been made. The preferable hypothesis is that Luke took over his version of the announcement of the betrayal from his special source. The existence of non-Lukan and non-Markan linguistic features in 22:21-23 certainly points in this direction. There is the further problem of why Luke would change Mark so completely; stylistic improvement or theologically motivated redaction seems inadequate to explain the differences. It is more probable that Luke is redacting a non-Markan source.57 It is possible, however, as Taylor argues, that Luke 22:22 bears the influence of Mark 14:21. Rehkopf's point that they represent two versions of the same Aramaic tradition is also possible, but less likely.
To conclude, the announcement of the
betrayal in Luke is not a Markan insertion, but is part of the Lukan special
tradition. The tradition of the announcement of the betrayal comes to us
in two lines of tradition, each of which has a different position relative
to the words of institution.
B. The Compositeness of the Markan and Lukan Narratives of the Last Supper
I move now to the task of analyzing the Last Supper narratives in the synoptic gospels with a view to ascertaining whether they are literarily composite. Since Matthew's account is a redaction of Mark I shall restrict my analysis to the Markan and Lukan narratives. Is there any evidence that these are composite in nature and not organic unities? In my attempt to answer this question, I shall look for literarily awkward features, pointing to the existence of literary seams. The results of this investigation will influence my reconstruction of the Last Supper.
1. The Markan Narrative of the Last Supper
The reference in Mark 14:17 to Jesus' coming to the place of Passover with the twelve appears contradictory since, having sent two disciples ahead to prepare the Passover (Mark 14:12-16), Jesus could only have arrived with ten.58 This can be interpreted to mean that, at some point in the history of the tradition, either the unit of the preparation of the Passover or the betrayal was inserted into an already existing narrative and the appropriate changes were not made to the text. There is, in other words, a literary seam between 14:16 and 14:17. If Luke 22:14 is derived from Mark, Luke's change of "with the twelve" to "the disciples with him" could reflect his solution to the problem.
It might be argued that this is merely a narrative oversight--that the two had returned is perhaps accidently omitted. In preparing for Passover both, or at least one, of the disciples would have had to take the lamb to the Temple to be slaughtered sometime in the late afternoon. Perhaps Jesus and the ten met the two disciples in charge of preparations at the Temple, and then went to the upper Room together. But this attempt to explain how twelve disciples can arrive with Jesus when he earlier sent two of them to prepare the Passover ultimately fails. There is such an impression of discontinuity that the conclusion that 14:17 is a redactional connective seems unavoidable. The phrase in 14:17 "and when evening came he went with his disciples" joins 14:16 (the tradition of the preparation of the Passover) with 14:18 (the announcement of the betrayal), two previously unrelated units of tradition, thus providing a transitional link between the two. Schenke writes, "Dennoch verbieten es einfach die Regeln des Erzaehlens, mit so grossen Zeitzwischenraumen innerhalb einer zussamenhangenden Erzaehlung zu arbeiten und diese durch so ungenaue Angaben zu ueberbruecken, wie dies in V. 17 geschieht."59
The different designations for Jesus' inner circle as "disciples" in Mark 14:12, 13, 14, 16 and "the twelve" in 14:17 and 20 is further evidence that two originally unrelated traditions--14:12-16 and 14:18-21--have been joined together by means of the redactional link verse, Mark 14:17.60 Mark or a pre-Markan redactor was faced with two traditions in which the followers of Jesus were designated differently; he did his redactional best to bring the two together. He chose, as a result, to designate Jesus' Passover haburah in 14:17 as "the twelve" in conformity with the designation of the disciples in 14:20.
If Mark 14:17 is not a redactional link, one would have to conclude that it belongs to 14:18-20, since it is unlikely that Jesus' followers would be designated as "the disciples" four times in a row and then as "the twelve," especially when they are no longer twelve. But it does not seem possible that an independent unit of tradition would begin with 14:17, because this presupposes familiarity with which day was beginning with the onset of evening and to where Jesus and the twelve had arrived. Schenke attempts to establish that 14:17-21 is largely a Markan redaction; but the parallel tradition of the announcement of the betrayal in the Lukan special source attests that it was part of the early tradition connected with the Last Supper, not a Markan creation.61
Pesch claims that the use of "the twelve" in 14:17 and 14:20 is a linguistic variation demanded by the context and that there is no literary awkwardness in the use of two different designations for the followers of Jesus in Mark 14:12-20.62 The change in terminology after 14:16 is necessitated by the reintroduction of Judas. Since Judas, who in 14:10 was designated as one of the twelve, again becomes the focus of the narrative in 14:17, the disciples accordingly are referred to as "the twelve." Pesch is correct in pointing out that in the Passion narrative "Judas Iscariot one of the twelve" is used as a title. But the transition between 14:12-16 and 14:18-21 is still too rough not to be redactional.
Others have claimed that the author may have using the term "the twelve" conventionally as a synonym for "the disciples,"63 or the term "the twelve" is necessary because "the disciples" denotes the larger group of Jesus' followers.64 Neither effort is convincing. The use of "disciples" and "twelve" as designations for the disciples points to the conclusion that at some point in the history of the tradition the traditions of the preparation of the Passover and the announcement of the betrayal were originally unrelated.
But is there evidence that the event depicted in the tradition of the announcement of the betrayal contradicts a Passover context? Luke's version is consistent either with a Passover meal or with any meal eaten in common by Jesus and his disciples. Bultmann argues, however, that Mark's version does not fit a Passover context,65 because during a first-century Passover meal, the participants would have had separate bowls; Mark 14:20, however, implies that there is only a single bowl into which all dip their food. The meal at which Jesus identifies his betrayer, therefore, could not have been a Passover meal. At some point in the history of the tradition this unit became fixed in a Passover context with the resulting inconsistency.
Bultmann's claim that the tradition of the announcement of the betrayal is inconsistent with the framework of a Passover meal is inaccurate. He holds that Billerbeck's placing of this event before the Passover meal proper, during the course of appetizers, is historically impossible. But Bultmann offers no evidence for his position; in fact, Billerbeck's reconstruction is fully convincing. The announcement of the betrayal can, without contradiction, be situated during the course prior to the Passover meal proper. Dipping into the common bowl could be dipping the lettuce into the bowl of salad dressing (m. Pesah. 10:3). Even if Billerbeck's position were not convincing there are other possible ways to integrate the dipping into a paschal framework. Pesch claims that the bowl into which Jesus and his disciples dip is the bowl of fruit puree,66 served along with the meal after the course of appetizers. (This presupposes a placing of the words of insitution relative to the Passover meal different from Billerbeck's.67) Contrary to Bultmann's view, it is unlikely that the participants had individual bowls anyway, whatever was supposed to have been in them, since there is no reference to the use of individual bowls in the sources.
The words of institution follow upon the announcement of the betrayal in Mark's gospel. Is there evidence that the connection between these two units of traditions is secondary?
The literary awkwardness of having two references to the disciples and Jesus eating (14:18a, 22a) has been seen as evidence of the work of a redactor, fusing two originally unrelated traditions--68 the tradition concerning the announcement of the betrayal and the words of institution. It is usually thought that the second "eating" (evsqio,ntwn) was inserted before the words of institution to connect them with a larger narrative context. A literary seam was thereby created.
This is one explanation of the data. But is it not the only one? Pesch argues that the two references to eating are not redundancies resulting from the fusion of two different traditions, but references to two different stages in Jesus' last Passover meal.69 The reclining and eating of 14:18a represents the preliminary course, the stage between the first and second cups at which time the guests eat appetizers and drink wine; the eating referred to in 14:22a takes place during the meal proper. Thus the second "eating" does not signal a literary seam, but functions as a narrative connection, and the two references to eating are fully intelligible as parts of a Passover meal. Pesch's explanation assumes that the order of the Passover meal is an exception to the usual procedure at a Jewish festival meal, where the guests would not recline for the course of appetizers.
In spite of Pesch's arguments, it seems that the two references to Jesus and the disciples eating only coincidentally conform to one possible reconstruction of the order of the Passover meal. I shall argue later that the words of institution--before their incorporation into their present context in the Markan Passion narrative--were a liturgical formula. The phrase "and while they were eating" in 14:22a is, therefore, a secondary connective link needed to incorporate the eucharistic liturgy into a larger narrative framework. Even though the Markan chronology is historically intelligible, this does not mean that the text is a unity.
The fact that the words of institution themselves in Mark contain no reference to anything distinctly paschal points to the conclusion that the narrative of Jesus' Last Supper is composite. To be sure, the bread and the wine are parts of a Passover meal, but they are also parts of any Jewish festival meal. Since one is told that the meal the two disciples went to prepare was the Passover, one would expect a description of a Passover meal. I conclude that, before their being situated within their larger context in Mark, the words of institution were contextless.70 Originally the words of institution did not belong to the preceding narratives of the announcement of the betrayal and the preparation for the Passover, and this fact is evidenced by the literary awkwardness of their presence in the larger narrative context.
In Mark the eschatological saying is appended to the words of institution. It has been suggested that the connection in Mark between the two is artificial. This would mean that Mark 14:22-25 contains two units of tradition that were at one time unrelated.71
Schenke deals extensively with the Markan text, and concludes that formally and in terms of content Mark 14:25 is too different to belong literarily to Mark 14:24.72 (He holds that Luke 22:15-18 is a Lukan construction based on Mark 14:25.) Formally, 14:25 has to be viewed as an addition to the original unity of 14:22-24 for the following reasons. Since it is introduced by the formula "amen I say to you," 14:25 must originally have been an isolated unit of tradition, and, like other sayings in Mark's gospel beginning with "amen I say to you," its context is secondary. Moreover, the eschatological saying disturbs the parallelism of 14:22-24 because it relates only to the word over the cup and not to the word over the bread as well; without 14:25 the Markan words of institution would be formally parallel, so 14:25 must be secondary. In terms of content also Mark 14:25 does not belong to 14:22-24, according to Schenke; the reference to Jesus' drinking anew in the Kingdom of God is in tension with the thrust of the words of institution, where Jesus gives to the disciples to eat and drink but does not do so himself. In addition, only the cup is mentioned in 14:24, because what was in the cup is not "wine," but "my blood of the covenant"; in 14:25, however, the cup is not mentioned but only its contents, the wine ("the fruit of the vine") to be drunk in the future Kingdom of God.
Mark's redactional purpose in appending 14:25--a Markan creation, according to Schenke--to 14:22-24 was to counter the tendency in his community to eliminate the eschatological thrust of the kerygma. The problem was the Markan community's anti-eschatological, divine-man theology. It neither understood the divine necessity of Jesus' suffering nor appreciated the eschatological dimension of its Christian hope. Instead, it understood the sacraments along the lines of those found in the mystery religions.
Pesch, however, argues for the opposite conclusion. From a literary viewpoint there are no grounds to question the unity of Mark 14:22-25.73 The phrases "I drink from" and "fruit of the vine" are phrases that belong to a Passover context. From a genre and form-critical viewpoint also there are no grounds for questioning the unity of the passage. The genre of 14:22-25 is historical narrative, a part of the larger context of the Passion narrative. (The form of Mark 14:22-24 is not a cult aetiology, unlike the words of institution in 1 Corinthians 11.) Mark 14:25 is Jesus' prophecy of his death with a view to his participation in the future realization of the Kingdom of God. Pesch explains, "Die Todesprophetie ist geradezu der Schluessel zur Deutung der ganzen Szene, in der von Jesu Todesdeutung beim Paschamahl mit den Zwoelfen berichten wird."74 That is to say, Mark 14:22-25 is a meal narrative, in which Jesus in the context of his last Passover meal explains by means of the words of institution the significance of his death. Without the prophecy of his death in 14:25 the words of institution would not be fully intelligible.
Pesch's arguments are only partly successful in proving the unity of Mark 14:22-25. In the gospel of Mark, the words of institution are a part of a larger historical narrative, but they represent the reconversion of a liturgical formula to narrative form. So Schenke's point that formally 14:22-24 is a unity, which is disturbed by the addition of 14:25, is correct. Schenke's further point that the eschatological saying must originally have been an isolated unit of tradition, however, is weak because it is circular: it is not obvious that the other sayings beginning with "amen I say to you" are secondary to their context. On the contrary, Pesch is correct in his insistence that the eschatological saying, since it is a prophecy of Jesus' approaching death, is integral to the narrative and is literarily compatible with the words of institution. Schenke's argument that 14:25 does not belong in the same narrative context as 14:22-24--because in the former Jesus drank whereas in the latter he abstains--is also untenable. There is insufficient evidence to conclude from Mark 14:22-24 that Jesus abstains from eating and drinking.
In brief, the Markan Last Supper narrative shows obvious signs of being literarily composite. It shall be shown that the same is true of its Lukan counterpart.
2. The Lukan Narrative of the Last Supper
I have already concluded that the Lukan narrative is composed of Lukan special tradition and of Markan material. This is sufficient to conclude that it is literarily composite. Luke 22:7-13/14 is derived from Mark to which Luke adds a version of the eschatological saying, a version of the words of institution and a version of the announcement of the betrayal, each derived from the Lukan special source. The connection between the narrative of the preparation of the Passover and the material drawn from Luke's special source represents a literary seam.
Within the three narrative units derived from the Lukan special source there is evidence of literary compositeness. Luke 22:15-18 shows signs of being a self-contained literary unit before being joined to the words of institution by Luke or a pre-Lukan redactor. According to Schuermann, there are stylistic differences between 22:15-18 and 22:19-20 indicating that the connection between the two units of tradition is secondary: a. 22:17 has dexa,menoj; 22:19 has labw,n b. 22:17 has a command formula; 22:19 does not c. 22:15, 22:17 has ei=pen; 22:19, 22:20 have le,gwn d. 22:19 has kai. e;dwken auvtoi/j; 22:17 does not e. 22:17 has poth,rion; 22:20 has to. poth,rion.75 In addition, the unity of 22:15-18 is obvious in the parallelism exhibited between 22:15 and 22:17 and the eschatological sayings in 22:16 and 22:18. I conclude that the connection between the Lukan eschatological saying and the words of institution must be secondary. It is the participial connective kai. labw,n (22:19) that allows the transition to be made from 22:15-18 to 22:19-20. It therefore represents a literary seam.
In spite of the conclusion that the connection between 22:15-18 and 22:19-20 is secondary, the whole narrative (22:15-20) reads smoothly as a depiction of a Passover meal, though an incomplete one. The cup in Luke 22:17 corresponds to the first or second Passover cup. Schenke's argument for the incongruity of the narrative sequence of the words of institution followed by the eschatological saying (on the grounds that in the former it was the cup/covenant that was the focus whereas in the latter it was the wine) loses its force when it is realized that in a more original form of the tradition the eschatological saying may not follow immediately upon the words of institution but was situated sometime during the meal, as in Luke. I shall later contend that, although at an intermediate point in the history of the tradition the eschatological saying existed as an isolated unit of tradition, independent of a larger context, originally it and the words of institution formed a continuous narrative, similar to the Lukan arrangement.
The Lukan version of the words of institution, as a third variant of the tradition, suffers from the same literary defect as the Markan: although Jesus' meal is described as being a Passover meal, there is nothing distinctly paschal about the meal depicted in the words of institution. This narrative incongruity is to be explained in the same way that the Markan narrative incongruity was explained. The Lukan words of institution were originally contextless and only secondarily were placed into the larger context of Jesus' last Passover meal. That Paul quotes a version of the words of institution clearly tradition-historically related to the Lukan making no reference to the fact that Jesus was eating a Passover meal proves that this was possible.
The announcement of the betrayal in Luke's Last Supper narrative shows signs of having been secondarily joined to the words of institution. It was shown that Mark 11:17 was likely a redactional link between two units of tradition, the preparation of the Passover and the announcement of the betrayal. The announcement of the betrayal in Luke is likewise literarily secondary. After the meal has been completed, Jesus announces that the one who would betray him is with him at the table. This assumes, as Mark's account has it, that the group is still eating together as a unit. But in the Lukan context the meal has already come to an end, since the blessing over the third cup has been recited (22:20) and there is no dessert served at a Passover meal. Jesus' statement, therefore, seems out of place. It would be more appropriate during the meal. The connection between the words of institution and the tradition of the announcement of the betrayal is literarily awkward, clearly signaling a literary seam.
I conclude that both the Markan and
the Lukan Last Supper narratives show signs of being composite. Neither
is an organic unity.76
NOTES TO CHAPTER TWO
1I exclude John 6 as a source reconstruction of the Last Supper.
2Vernon Robbin's redactional-critical work on the whole is too speculative ("Last Meal: Preparation, Betrayal, and Absence [Mark 14:12-25]," The Passion in Mark [ed. Werner H. Kelber; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1976] 22-60). He concludes that Mark's short word over the bread is the result of his intention to de-emphasize the bread, because for the Markan redactor the bread "invokes the death and absence of Jesus rather than his presence manifested in miraculous powers" (35). Such a conclusion is too far-fetched to be credible. Equally flawed are the redaction-critical conclusions of Donald Senior (The Passion of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark [Wilmington: Glazier, 1984], 54-59). Senior seeks to understand the eucharistic bread in light of other references to bread in Mark's gospel, concluding that bread is a symbol of Jesus' universal mission.
3A helpful synopsis of the words of institution is found in Rudolf Pesch, Das Abendmahl und Jesu Todesverstandnis (Freiburg: Herder, 1978), 22-23.
4What exactly was happening in the Corinthian church and what exactly Paul was hoping to effect by this section of his letter is largely incidental to my purposes. See Gerd Thiessen, "Soziale Schictung in der korinthischen Gemeinde," ZNW 65 (1974): 232-72; id., "Soziale Integration und Sakramentales Handeln," NovT 16 (1974): 179-206; Guenther Bornkamm, "Herrenmahl und Kirche bei Paulus," ZTK 53 (1956): 312-49; Paul Neuenzeit, Das Herrenmahl. Studien zur paulinischen Eucharistieauffassung (Munich: Kosel, 1960); Otfried Hofius, "Herrenmahl und Herrenmahlparadosis. Erwagungen zu 1 Kor 11, 23b-25," (Unpublished manuscript); Hans-Josef Kaluck, Herrenmahl und hellenistischer Kult (2d ed.; Muenster: Aschendorff, 1982); Franz-J. Leenhardt, Le sacrement de la sainte cene (Neuchatel: Delachaux and Niestle, 1948), 71-90.
5Heinz Schuermann, DerEinsetzungsbericht, Lk 22, 19-20 (Munster: Aschendorff, 1970), 2.
6Ibid., 3, n. 4.
7B. F. Streeter, The Four Gospels: A Study of Origins (London: MacMillan, 1924) 246-49.
8The best example of Matthew's potential contribution is towards an explication of Jesus' understanding of his death. If the Matthean phrase "for the forgiveness of sins" originates in the Matthean special tradition, there exists a source of equal weight to Mark that portrays Jesus as interpreting his death in expiatory terms. But if the phrase is a result of Matthean redaction it is clearly secondary. Xavier Lwon-Dufour argues that Matthew's version represents a later interpretation of the words of institution along the lines of an expiatory sacrifice (Le partage du pain eucharistique selon le Nouveau Testament [Paris: Seuil, 1982], 174). Schuermann holds the same position (Einsetzungsbericht, 6-7), as does D. P. Senior, The Passion Narrative according to Matthew (Leuven: Louvain University Press, 1975), 87.
9Schuermann, since he was dealing with the Lukan text, which does not have an eschatological saying after the words of institution, does not inquire into the literary relationship between Mark 14:25 and Matthew 26:29, although he probably would conclude that the dependence is of Matthew on Mark.
10Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht 1-7; Pesch, Abendmahl; Senior, The Passion Narrative; Hermann Patsch, Abendmahl und historicher Jesus (Stuttgart: Calwer, 1972) 69-70, 92, 103-104; N. A. Dahl, "Die Passionsgeschichte bei Matthaeus," NTS 2 (1955/56): 17-32; Frank Matera, Passion Narratives and Gospel Theologies (New York: Paulist, 1986).
11Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 139-59; Heinz Schuermann, "Lk 22, 19b-20 als ursprtngliche Texttberlieferung," Traditionsgeschichtlishe Untersuchungen zu den synoptischen Evangelien (Dtsseldorf: Patmos, 1968) 159-92; Pierre Benoit, "Le recit de la cene dans Lc. xxii, 15-20," RB 48 (1939): 257-93; I. Howard Marshall, The Gospel of Luke (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1978) 799-801; Joseph Fitzmyer, The Gospel According to Luke (2 vols.; New York: Doubleday, 1985) 2.1387-89; E. Earle Ellis, The Gospel of Luke (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1974) 254-56. Recent attempts to re-establish the originality of the shorter test are not convincing, since they often rely on arguments based on the redactional aims of Luke or other such tenuous foundations, rather than on the textual evidence. See M. Rese, "Zur Problematik von Kurz- und Langtext in Luk. XXII. 17ff.," NTS 22 (1975/76): 15-31; Arthur Voobus, "A New Approach to the Problem of the Shorter and Longer Text in Luke," NTS 15 (1968/69): 457-63; id., "Kritische Beobactungen tber die lukanische Darstellung des Herrenmahls," ZNW 61 (1970): 102-10; Henry Chadwick, "The Shorter Text of Luke XXII. 15-20," HTR 50 (1957): 249-58.
12Fitzmyer, The Gospel According to Luke, 2.1388.
13Martin Dibelius, From Tradition to Gospel (Cambridge: James Clarke, 1982) 210; Werner Kuemmel, Promise and Fulfilment (3d ed.; London: SCM, 1961) 30-31.
14Benoit, "Le recit de la cene."
15Ibid., p. 380; See Pesch, Abendmahl, 28-30, for a more complete list of Lukanisms. The presence of Lukanisms allows, but does not compel, the conclusion that 22:15-18 is a Lukan redactional composition.
16Benoit, "Le recit de la cene," 379.
17Pesch, Abendmahl, 26-31.
18Joachim Wank, Beobactungen zum Eucharistieverstandnis des Lukas auf Grund der lukanischen Mahlberichte (Leipzig: St. Benno, 1973).
19E.g., Ferdinand Hahn, "Die alttestamentlichen Motiven in der urchristlichen Abendmahlstberlieferung," EvT 27 (1967): 337-74, especially 352-58; Helmut Merklein, "Erwagungen zur Tberlieferungsgeschichte der neutestamentlichen Abendmahlstraditionen," BZ 21 (1977): 88-101, 235-44, especially 235-36.
20Uncharacteristically, Pesch bolsters his conclusion of the redactional origin of Luke 22:15-18 from Mark 14:25 by citing many who hold views similar to his own. Those whom Pesch cites as authorities lend no weight to his own conclusion.
21Kuemmel, Promise and Fulfilment, 31; Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 98; Heinz Schuermann, Der Paschamahlbericht, Lk 22, (1-14) 15-18 (Munster: Aschendorff, 1968) 2, n. 9; Fitzmyer, Luke, 2.1386-87; Vincent Taylor, The Passion Narrative of St. Luke (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1972), 49-50.
22Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 96-100; Streeter, The Four Gospels, chap. 8; Tim Schramm, Der Markus-Stoff bei Lukas (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971) 5-6; Patsch, Abendmahl, 94.
23Jeremias ("Perikopen-Umstellungen bei Lukas?" NTS 4 (1957/58): 116-19) and Schuermann (Paschamahlbericht, 2, n. 9; id., "Die Dubletten im Lukasevangelium," Traditionsgeschichtlishe Untersuchungen zu den synoptischen Evangelien [Duesseldorf: Patmos, 1968] 272-78, 273, n. 9; cf. also, "Die Dublettenvermiedungen im Lukasevangelium," in Traditionsgeschichtlishe Untersuchungen zu den synoptischen Evangelien [Duesseldorf: Patmos, 1968] 279-89) argue, however, that these are not bona fide examples of a change in the order of the pericopes, because what Luke is doing is merely inserting these units of Markan material, left out of his own redaction of Mark, into places he deems appropriate. According to Schuermann, to whom Jeremias gives his approval, what Luke 6:17-19 and 8:19-21 do not represent a change in the Markan order but a postponement of sections of Markan material omitted by Luke. Luke ends his dependence on Mark's order at Luke 6:11 = Mark 3:6; he then retains three pericopes from what he omits--Luke 6:12-16 = Mark 3:13-19; Luke 6:17-19 = Mark 3:7-11a; Luke 8:19-21 = Mark 3:31-35--and inserts them at different places in his gospel. This argument is not fully convincing, although it is possible that Luke operated in this manner. One could equally say that these represent genuine changes in the Markan order (See Kuemmel, Promise and Fulfilment, 31). At first glance it appears that Luke simply transposed his Markan material: Mark 3:7-12 = Luke 6:17-19 was placed after Mark 3:13-19 = Luke 6:12-16, and Mark 3:31-34 = Luke 8:19-21 was put into another Markan section in Luke (8:4-9:40). But these data may be coincidental, and in fact Luke may not have transposed, as Jeremias and Schuermann claim. It seems that the data could be explained in either way.
24H. F. D. Sparks argues unsuccessfully that Luke does not transpose sections of his Markan source. His work was the occasion for the writing of Jeremias' article "Perikopen-Umstellungen bei Lukas?" F. Neirynck, in his article "The Argument from Order and St. Luke's Transpositions," ETL 49 (1973): 784-815, states that Luke may invert the Markan order for redactional reasons, and is not under the influence of non-Markan sources. His argument is quite complicated, and suffers from the problem from which many redactional arguments suffer, namely, an excess of supposition.
25Schuermann, Paschamahlbericht, p. 2.; See also Schramm, Markus-Stoff.
26Schuermann, Paschamahlbericht, 2; id., "Die Dubletten im Lukasevangelium"; id. "Die Dublettenvermeidungen im Lukasevangelium."
27Schuermann, Paschamahlbericht, 3.
28A disputed point is whether Luke 22:14 is a Lukan redaction of Mark 14:17-18a, a good example of how tenuous this type of argument can be. Joachim Jeremias sees 22:14 as the beginning of a section of non-Markan material in Luke (Die Sprache des Lukasevangelium (Gottingen: Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht, 1980), p. 286). Lukan redaction is postulated for the designation of the as twelve as "the apostles," a Lukan preferred word, and the use of su,n ("with"), a characteristic Lukan usage. kai. o[te ("and then"), on the other hand, is Lukan special tradition, since Luke normally avoids this phrase. avne,pesen ("he reclined") is likewise Lukan tradition, since Luke prefers to use kata,-verbs to describe the reclining at a table (to eat). Schuermann views 22:14, however, as part of the Lukan redaction of Mark 14:17-18a (Paschamahlbericht, 104-10). Luke changes Mark's ovyiaj genome,nhj ("when it became evening")to o[te evge,neto h` w[ra ("when the hour arrived") to avoid the use of a non-preferred manner of speaking. Schuermann remarks that "Bei Mark ist an die Vorschrift von Ex 12,8 errinert, wo als Termin der Paschafeier die Nacht angegeben ist" (Ibid., p. 104), whereas Luke avoids this, in accord with his insensitivity to Jewish themes in his sources. Schuermann admits that Luke dislikes the phrase kai. o[te but points out that he does not avoid it completely. He concludes that Luke writes kai, rather than de most often when he is dependent on one of his sources. Schuermann accounts for Luke's use of avne,pesen rather than Mark's e;rcetai by hypothesing that Luke dropped e;rcetai from Mark's phrase e;rcetai...kai. avnakeime,nwn, replacing the participle avnakeime,nwn with avne,pesen, although he recognizes that Luke has no preference for this verb. Luke changes the Markan "with the twelve" to "the apostles with him" because, as Jeremias points out, this is part of the Lukan preferred vocabulary. The evidence, it would seem, is ambiguous with respect to the literary origin of Luke 22:14. This verse is similar enough to Mark 14:17-18a to support Schuermann's hypothesis of Markan literary dependence. On the other hand, Jeremias would argue that the similarity is the result of both functioning as introductions to the same event. Fortunately, for the purposes of historical reconstruction it is not important to solve this apparently insoluable problem.
29Taylor, Passion Narrative, 48.
30Jeremias, Lukasevangelium, 286-87; Schuermann, Paschamahlbericht, 3-46.
32See Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 155.
33Taylor, Passion Narrative, 32-33; id., Behind the Third Gospel (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1926), 74, 124.
34Rehkopf disagrees that there are Markan interpolations in the Lukan Passion narrative (Die lukanische Sonderquelle), whereas Schuermann, like Taylor, allows for the possibility of interpolation from Mark.
35Pesch, Abendmahl, 32.
36Taylor, Passion Narrative, 57.
37Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 43-48.
39Taylor, Passion Narrative, 52.
40Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 17.
41Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 154-58; id., Die Sprache, 287-88; Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 17-42.
42Taylor, Passion Narrative, 52.
43Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 155-56; E. Lohmeyer, "Vom urchristlichen Abendmahl," TRu, n.s. 9 (1937): 168-227, especially 178.
44See Appendix A.
45Conzelmann, 1 Corinthians, 196; Patsch, Abendmahl, 104-105; Neuenzeit, Das Herrenmahl, 96-100; Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 7-14.
46Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 7-14; cf. Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 101-105.
47E.g., Jeremias, Schuermann, Taylor, Marshall, Fitzmyer.
48Dibelius, From Tradition to Gospel, 210; Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 156.
49Marshall, Luke, 787.
50Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 98-99; Heinz Schuermann, Jesu Abschiedsrede, Lk 22, 21-38 (2d. ed.; Munster: Aschendorff, 1977), 139-42; contrary to Fitzmyer, Luke, 2.1408.
51Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 4.
52Fitzmyer argues for the Markan origin of Luke 22:21-23 (Luke).
53Friedrich Rehkopf, Die lukanische Sonderquelle (Tuebingen: J. C. B. Mohr [Paul Siebeck], 1959), 8-13.
54Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 8-21.
55Rehkopf, Die lukanische Sonderquelle, 8-10; Jeremias, Lukasevangeliums, 288, 139-40; contrary to Schuermann, Einsetzungsbericht, 14-15 and Fitzmyer, Luke, 2.1409.
56Schuermann concedes this (Einsetzungsbericht, 11).
57Marshall, Luke, 808.
58Walter Grundmann, Das Evangelium nach Markus (Berlin: Evangelische Verlagsanstalt, 1977), 384.
59Ludger Schenke, Studien zur Passionsgeschichte des Markus (Wtrzburg: Echter Verlag, 1971), 200.
60Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 93.
61Schenke, Passionsgeschichte, 200-85.
62Rudolf Pesch, Das Markusevangelium (2 vols.; Freiburg: Herder, 1977), 2. 347.
63Detlev Dormeyer, Die Passion Jesu als Verhaltensmodell (Munster: Aschendorff, 1974), 185.
64Wolfgang Schenk, Der Passionsbericht nach Markus (Berlin: Evangelischen Verlagsanstalt, 1974), 185.
65Rudolf Bultmann, History of the Synoptic Tradition (rev. ed.; New York: Harper and Row, 1976), 264.
66Pesch, Abendmahl, 81.
67A. E. J. Rawlinson, St. Mark (5th ed.; London: Methuen, 1942), 202-203.
68Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 113; Bultmann, History, 265; Schenke, Passionsgeschichte, 286-90; Schenk, Passionsbericht, 189.
69Pesch, Abendmahl, 70-71.
70Bultmann, History, 265-66; Schenke, Passionsgeschichte, 307-41; Guenther Bornkamm, Jesus of Nazareth (New York: Harper and Row, 1975), 160-62.
71Bultmann argues that Mark 14:25 is the remnant of a version of the Last Supper represented more fully by Luke 22:15-18 (History, 265-66). Schuermann holds a similar view (Paschamahlbericht, 42-45). Bornkamm also holds that the eschatological saying and the words of institution have separate tradition-historical origins (Jesus, 160). Some who argue for two versions of the Last Supper view the version with the eschatological thrust as more original and even more authentic. See Reginald Fuller, The Foundations of New Testament Christology (London: Lutterworth, 1965) 106-107; id., "The Double Origin of the Eucharist," BR 8 (1963): 60-72.
72Schenke, Passionsgeschichte, 290-306.
73Pesch, Abendmahl, 35-38, 76-81.
74Ibid., 80. The last difference—poth,rion/to. poth,rion is probably not significant, since to. poth,rion likely denotes the cup of blessing whereas poth,rion denotes the first or second cup (see later).
75Schuermann, Paschamahlbericht, 47-74; Jeremias, Eucharistic Words, 99-100.
76See Patsch, Abendmahl, 59-61.