Writing on the scriptural resonances in Mark’s Passion Narrative, I was reminded of the review article by Theodore J. Weeden Sr, “Polemics as a Case for Dissent: A Response to Richard Bauckham’s Jesus and the Eyewitnesses” JSHJ 6 (2008): 211-22 (further discussion at XTalk: Historical Jesus & Christian Origins). His case against Bauckham covers a lot of ground (defending Loveday Alexander on the prologues of Luke-Acts, Joseph Tyson on the late dating of canonical Luke-Acts after Marcion, his own polemical interpretation of Mark, his new thesis that Mark imitated Josephus’ story of Jesus son of Ananias in War 6.300-309), but I want to focus particularly on the argument that Mark composed the narrative in Gethsemane on the outline of the Davidic saga (pp 221-23). Dr. Weeden lists the following correspondences:
(a) Conspiracy against David (2 Sam.15:1-12)=conspiracy against Jesus (14:1, 10-11); (b) Ahithophel’s betrayal of David (2 Sam.15:31;16:20-17:3)=Judas’ betrayal of Jesus (Mk.14:10f.); (c) Ittai’s vow of loyality to David (2 Sam.15:21)=Peter’s vow of loyalty to Jesus (Mk. 14:29); (d) David’s flight to the Mt. of Olives (2 Sam.15:30)=Jesus’ move to Mt. of Olives (Mk. 14:26); (e) Three commanders accompany David ( 2 Sam.15:19-24)=Jesus “takes” three confidants (14:33); (f) David’s distress (2 Sam. 15:30b)=Jesus’ distress (Mk. 14:33-35a); (g) David’s resigning to God’s will (2 Sam.15:25f.)=Jesus’ prayer resigning to God’s will (Mk.14:36); (h) Plan for army to attack David (2 Sam.17:1-3)=crowd with swords/clubs arrest Jesus (14:43); (i) Joab’s deceitful kiss of Amasa (2 Sam. 20:1-10)=Judas’ betrayal kiss of Jesus (Mk. 14:44f.).
He further sees the altered citation of LXX Zech 13:7 in Mk 14:27 to conform more closely to Ahithophel’s hope in his attack of David (2 Sam 17:2) that “all the people with him [David] will flee” and “I will strike the king” and shepherd and sheep can be a metaphor for ruler and people.
I have no problem with the idea that, as son of David (Mk 10:47-48; 11:10, but does Mark contest or redefine Davidic sonship in 12:35-37?), Mark views David as a type or forerunner of Jesus. Further support may be that 1st century Jews believed David wrote many of the lament Psalms which form a script for Jesus and there must be some literary creation (who heard Jesus’ prayer while the disciples slept?). However, might some of this be a case of parallelomania? The setting on the Mount of Olives is suggestive, but did David and Jesus alone find themselves victims of conspiracy, suffer grief or get hunted down by enemies? Some details make plausible historical sense like the flight of the disciples (the men hid away so as not to suffer the same fate while some women were allowed to watch at a distance as witnesses in Mk 15:47) or that Jesus’ was betrayed by a member of his circle that tipped the authorities off about his message and whereabouts (creating issues for the “Q” saying that the Twelve would sit on 12 thrones). Other elements of the narrative world may be sufficiently explained as underscoring the utter failure of the disciples (the Twelve fail to keep their word to die with Jesus, the inner circle of Peter/James/John fall asleep, Judas’ kiss heightens the personal betrayal, the chief spokesperson Peter denies Jesus, not sure where Weeden fits the flight of the naked youth in the OT narrative [?]) in contrast to Jesus resolve to do the divine will and drink the cup (a metaphor used throughout the OT). What do others think?