Whose Spirit is Eager? The Referent of Πνεῦμα in Mark 14,38 and the Intended Comparison

Cornelis Bennema 1
  • 1 Union School of Theology, Bryntirion House, Bridgend, United Kingdom
Cornelis Bennema
  • Corresponding author
  • Union School of Theology, Bryntirion House, Bridgend CF31 4DX, Bridgend, United Kingdom
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Abstract

Scholarship is divided on the referent of πνεῦμα in Mark 14,38. Most scholars (mainly English and French) favour an anthropological referent while a minority (some English and most German scholars) supports a divine referent. This study proposes that 14,38 refers to the divine spirit and that, in the broader context of Mark 13, the intended comparison is not of an inner human struggle but the contrast between two kinds of human existence. Members of the Jesus group can rely on divine assistance in testing situations while non-members have no access to this divine resource.

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A highly reputed journal published since 1900, the Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft is an international journal for the exegesis of the New Testament and knowledge of the early church (patristics).

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