Ever since 1991 when I first received my back-issues of JP in the mail, I’ve remembered Bivin’s “To Destroy The Law” article from Issue #6. I had grown up with several teachings about Jesus’ fulfillment of the law of Moses, but this article clearly pointed out that if Jesus had communicated this in his mother-language and those words were translated into English we would probably have a completely different understanding of Matthew 5:17. It’s that pesky middle-language of Greek which so taints our understanding of Jesus’ message.
A “Hebraism” is a typical feature of the Hebrew language found in another language. The majority of today’s New Testament authorities assume that Aramaic is behind the Semitisms of the New Testament, and that Jesus spoke Aramaic as his primary language. So much so, in fact, that the student who checks standard reference works is informed that the Greek words for “Hebrew” and for “in the Hebrew language” (not only in the New Testament, but in Josephus and other texts) refer to the Aramaic language.
Fifteen years ago, I met David and Josa Bivin at a seminar in Tulsa, OK, made possible by HaKesher. As an introduction, I would like to share with you the cord that weaves my life with David’s family.
The Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research held its Second Annual Symposium on Tuesday, November 20. The meeting for members and the reception for affiliates, budding scholars and friends of the Jerusalem School took place at the Hotel Monaco in Denver, Colorado.