perseusomega9 wrote: ↑
Fri Jan 15, 2021 7:36 pm
Hope the author didn't pull a muscle with that stretch. C'mon John, you love talking about your imagined consistencies in the text. In the NT Babylon is Babylon except when it's Rome.
That's the author's summary of other scholars (Michaels, Davids, Kelly, Thiede). Regarding Kelly, Jobes writes:
He cites the "waters of Babylon" in Ps. 137.1 as a similar reference that Jews of the Diaspora could identify as whatever place in the world they happened to live.The reference to Babylon here might function similarly. In that case, "there would thus be no reference to Rome or any other place in this verse ..."
Regarding Thiede, Jobes writes:
Thiede ... argues similarly that Babylon here and the expression in Acts 12:17 that Peter left Jerusalem "for another place" ... are both allusions to being in a state of exile and neither is intended to specify a location. The latter phrase, Thiede argues, is an echo of Exek. 12:3 LXX, the only other place in the biblical corpus where the phrase ... is used in reference to going into the Babylonian exile. It may be that Rome as the location of the composition of 1 Peter leans more heavily on tradition than exegesis.
And Jobes notes that:
The reference to Babylon is sometimes offered as evidence for dating 1 Peter to after AD 70, for it was after the Romans destroyed the temple in Jerusalem that apocalyptic writings, such as John's Revelation in the NT, adopted "Babylon" as a code word for Rome. However, this sense cannot be assumed for its occurrence here because the genre of 1 Peter is not apocalyptic and the letter contains nothing overtly subversive about the Roman state (in fact, quite the contrary) ... Nothing is said of Babylon's evil in 1 Peter, leading Michaels ... to observe that the only thing wrong with Babylon is that it is not home.
However, Jobes doesn't rule out the possibility that it refers to Rome, and neither do I. But it's hard for me to apply it to a post-70 CE setting given that 1 Peter 2:13-14 says:
Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to the king as the supreme authority, or to governors as those sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to praise those who do right.
If 1 Peter was written after 70 CE and Babylon relates to Rome's destruction of Jerusalem, do you think the author is implying that the destruction was a good thing then, as per the above?