Reconstructing the Earliest Account of Jesus and an Allegedly Sinful Woman

The Jesus Memoirs

We have looked at the episode of the purportedly sinful woman who sought out Jesus while he was dining at the house of a Pharisee in Luke 7:36-50 and how Luke may have transferred to it a few elements from the different account of another woman who anointed Jesus in Bethany in the other three New Testament Gospels. We also saw the Patristic reports (i.e. Papias, the Didascalia Apostolorum, Didymus the Blind) describe how Jesus pardoned a woman accused of plural sins or a single sin, though the sin was not identified as “adultery” until the “pericope adulterae” and Rufinus’s Latin translation (ca. 402 CE) of Eusebius’s Ecclesiastical History. It is possible that these are two separate incidents where Jesus showed compassion to an unidentified woman, but my hunch is that Luke was familiar with the same story that was known to Papias of Hierapolis and edited it…

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About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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