I'm afraid that Greg Doudna's larger theory about early Christian
developments raises so many questions (to my mind, of the sort that make
the theory difficult to sustain) that I prefer to remain with something
more controllable: the question about Keypha/Petros. A Few specifics:
1) Greg, I checked every place I could think of in the Fitzmyer volume
you mentioned (_Essays on the SEmitic Background of the NT_) and could
find no ref. to a usage of Keypha as a proper name outside the NT. The
essay where Peter is disucussed is titled "The Name Simon", and deals
with the usage of that name. I remain, therefore, of the opinion that we
have no verified usage of Keypha as an Aramaic name prior to the NT usage.
2) We do in fact have a few cases of TITLES being translated from Semitic
languages into Greek: Mashiach/Christos; Thomas/Didymus; Abba/Pater;
etc. So, the move from Keypha to Petros is by no means without parallel
in early Christianity.
3) All indications are that Keypha arose NOT as a name but as a title or
nickname (i.e., either a formal or informal sobriqet), and was early on
matched by a Greek usage (Petros; whether used for the same person or
another is presently the issue). Such a "titular" term would the more
readily be "translated" than would an established proper name (which
might more readily be Graecized).
4) Having re-read Bart's JBL article over the weekend, I am the more
persuaded (contra Bart) that the 2nd cent. & later sources he cites that
attempt a distinction twixt Peter and Kephas reflect apologetic concerns
to avoid the idea of conflict within the apostolate, specifically a
conflict twixt the two "biggies" of Peter and Paul (i.e., the scene
mentioned in Antioch in Gal. 2).
5) Given that there is an Aramaic name "Petros" which perhaps meant
"firstborn" (see Cullmann, "Petros", TDNT 6:101 [n. 8]), it is even
possible that the same figure could have been called "keypha" and
"petros" as Aramaic nicknames first and then "Petros" in Greek as an
attempt to carry over the rough sense of Keypha.
6) A confusion of people is always to be considered (and can be shown in
early Christian texts). But Greg's hypothesis of a deliberate conspiracy
to make up alternate Jer. leaders boggles one. In fact, the broad
direction of the early church was to claim close ties with the Jer.
church and to claim all its leaders for itself. I see no evidence of a
polemic against the family of Jesus or others of the Jewish Christian
leadership (Weeden's theory about Mark's supposed attack on the 12 hasn't
stood up to critical analysis).
Larry Hurtado, Religion, Univ. of Manitoba
- From: Greg Doudna <email@example.com>