Re: Mk 13:30 hH GENEA

From: Rod Decker (
Date: Sun Oct 19 1997 - 14:34:09 EDT

> The author (Mark) may or may not have understood what he wrote. That is not
> the point. Inspired Scripture writers often did not understand their own
> prophecies. Also, as Mark was writing for Peter, he was not "editing"
This prob. isn't the best way to handle this, but not having time to do it
justice (first complete draft of my diss. is due in 2 wks.), I will simply
voice a "howl of protest" at the notion that the biblical writers often
didn't understand what they wrote (i.e., their prophecies). If they didn't,
I'm sure that none of use ever will either. Communication/language doesn't
work that way and Scripture is no different despite it being inspired.
There are ways to express some of the exegetical/hermeneutical difficulties
involved, but this is surely not a helpful way to do it. Full discusssion
of that would require the creation of a "b-herm" list, but since here we
are concerned with the text, I think it fair to insist that any attempt to
understand the text must be grammatically based on the text itself, which
the author understood as well as (prob. better than) any contemporary
reader. There are no secret codes and no hidden messages (despite periodic
spates of "gnostic" enlightenment and National Enquirer reports!). Nor is
it helpful to appeal to some mysterious "sensus plenior" that we
enlightened modern scholars can figure out that the author didn't
understand. Well enough of the "rant"--my hot button got pushed and I was
foolish enough to respond despite too little time to pursue it fairly. But
I feel better :-) and the rest of your can use your delete key...

Maybe I should offer something constructive. I haven't followed this
thread, but did write a diss. f.n. recently that suggests some resources on
the topic of hH GENEA (that's what happened to catch my eye in the digest
index today). The article by Nelson I found particularly helpful (BTW,
Nelson wrote his diss. on the Matthean version of this discourse):

For discussion of the exegetical options from a variety of perspectives,
see G. Beasley-Murray, Jesus and the Kingdom of God, 333-4; D. Bock, Luke,
ECNT, 2:1688-92; F. Bruce, The Hard Sayings of Jesus, 225-30; R. Gundry,
Mark, 790-1; S. Kidder, "'This Generation' in Matthew 24:34," AUSS 21
(1983): 203-9; N. Nelson, "'This Generation' in Matt 24:34: A Literary
Critical Perspective," JETS 38 (1995): 369-85; S. Toussaint, Behold the
King: A Study of Matthew, 278-80; D. Turner, "The Structure and Sequence of
Matthew 24:1-41," GTJ 10 (1989): 21-6; and D. Wenham, "'This Generation
Will Not PassÉ': A Study of Jesus' Future Expectation in Mark 13," in
Christ the Lord, 127-50.


 Rodney J. Decker Baptist Bible Seminary
 Asst. Prof./NT P O Box 800 Clarks Summit PA 18411 USA

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