The following is a paper for my New Testament class at George Fox Evangelical Seminary.
“God spoke in Moses’ days in Moses’ ways, and he spoke in Jesus’ days in Jesus’ ways, and he spoke in Paul’s days in Paul’s ways. And he speaks in our days in our ways—and it is our responsibility to live out what the Bible says in our days. We do this by going back so we can come forward.”
I began this project with a pretty contemporary assumption: Jesus’ practice of poverty and celibacy was an attempt to address the economic inequalities of his culture, and any culture, really. My Research Question was:
Were Jesus’ economic practices meant to confront the economic practices of the Empire, so as to give voice to the disenfranchised?
However, after going through the Gospels, and writing down a list of the stories and sayings of Jesus related to economic issues, I noticed something I hadn’t expected: Jesus was a mooch! His practice of poverty seemed either not a practice of poverty at all, or an economic practice with a completely different intention than I had expected. So, (although I know I am not supposed to do this in the traditional academic research method, I did it anyway…) I changed my Research Hypothesis:
The economic practices of Jesus were a method of confronting the economic and social systems of his day in prophetic fashion, so as to call all people to God, and the mutual covenant of the Garden.
Jesus was born and raised primarily in Galilee, a region in Palestine of roughly “…’two hundred villages’ (Josephus)” with a population of “no more than a hundred thousand.” The region was mostly rural and agrarian in nature, where the social identity was collectivist in nature and practice. The most significant structure in life, work, and economic survival was the family/clan and village. Families lived at the subsistence level, being mainly self-sufficient:
“As in earlier centuries, the fundamental social-economic forms were still the family and the village community. The household was still the fundamental unit of production and consumption. Families consumed most of what they produced and produced virtually all of what they consumed. Clothing and other necessities were produced in the household or in barter with other households. There was little need for trade between villages except for products such as ceramics, which required a supply of clay that few villages had in their vicinity. Families lived in village communities where they cooperated in various ways, such as the construction of houses and maintenance of a community water supply. The form of local governance as well as social coherence was the village assembly (synagogue in Greek)
The agrarian economy was built not only on farming, but also on fishing, due to the proximity of the Sea of Galilee. Each family would normally have lived on ancestral home sites:
“Kinship in ancient Israel and Judah, as well as in first-century Palestine, was affected by the political sphere especially in terms of law, for example, incest, rape, marriage, divorce, paternity, and inheritance. But kinship also affected politics, most notably in patron-client relationships, and developing networks of “friends”. Kinship was affected by religion in terms of purity, for example, regulating who could have sex with whom and the ethnic and religious status of one’s spouse. And kinship affected religion (embedded in politics) in terms of descent, especially in the importance laid on the lineages of priests and their wives, but also by regulating membership in the political religion for the laity. Finally, kinship was interactive with the economic sphere in terms of occupations, dowry and inheritance, and land tenure.”
Within the family, gender roles are designated by areas of responsibility: Males-Outside and Females-Inside:
“In this arrangement, the wife normally becomes financial administrator with the key to the family chest when and since the husband must go out—to fields, to other villages, on pilgrimage.”
“This division of the genders is also made clear in the fundamental Mediterranean values of honor and shame. Males are expected to embody the family’s honor in their virility, boldness, sexual aggression, and protection of the family. This is symbolized in the male’s penis and testicles. Females are expected to keep the family from shame by their modesty, restraint, sexual exclusivity, and submission to male authority; this is symbolized in the female’s hymen. All the social roles of husband/wife, grandfather/grandmother, father/mother, son/daughter, brother/sister, uncle/aunt, male cousin/female cousin take their definitions from these assumptions about male and female roles, behaviors, dress, and attitudes.”
Marriages are arranged as a “…sexual, economic, and (at times) political and religious relationship contracted between families (or segments of the same family) for a male and female.” Divorce was permitted for men or women to initiate; however, since marriages were financial arrangements between families as well, it was (as now) costly.
Honor was a guiding principle of first century Palestinian culture:
“Honor is the value of a person in his or her own eyes (that is, one’s claim to worth) plus that person’s value in the eyes of his or her own social group. Honor is a claim to worth along with the social acknowledgement of worth.”
Honor in the culture can be ascribed, due to family status or position, or it can be acquired. Acquired honor is gained “…by excelling over others in the social interaction that we call challenge and response.” (The genealogies in the gospels might be intended to define Jesus’ ascribed honor by showing his earthly relationship to the Davidic monarchy, as well as the clan of Abraham.)
“The challenge is a claim to enter the social space of another. This claim can be positive or negative. A positive reason for entering the social space of another would be to gain some share in that space or to gain a cooperative, mutually beneficial foothold. A negative reason would be to dislodge another from his social space, either temporarily or permanently. Thus the source sending the message—always interpreted as a challenge—puts out some behavior, either positive (like a word of praise, a gift, a sincere request for help, a promise of help plus the actual help) or negative (a word of insult, a physical affront of various degrees, a threat along with the attempt to fulfill it). All such actions constitute the message that has to be perceived and interpreted by the receiving individual as well as the public at large.”
Honor doesn’t necessarily relate to economic status, though. In fact, wealth could signify dishonor. (I will further explain this below.)
Galilee and most of the world they would have known, was under the boot heal of the Roman Empire. Beginning in 37 BCE, the Romans appointed Herod the Great as indigenous ruler over Judea, Galilee, Perea, and the Northern Territories of Iturea, Gaulanitis, Trachonitis, Batanea, and Auranitis. In fact, even the high priests in Jerusalem were appointed by either Herod, or the Romans. These layers of the Empire also imposed layers of taxes:
“After their initial conquest in 63 BCE, the Romans had laid the Galileans and Judeans under tribute, as a punitive humiliation as well as source of revenue. According to Josephus, Rome required a quarter of the harvest every second year, that is, roughly 12.5 percent a year (Ant. 14.202-203). This was in addition to the tithes and offerings already due to the Temple and high priestly aristocracy, which was charged with collection and delivery of the tribute.”
“Herod quickly became the Roman’s favorite client king, partly because he kept a tight control on Judea and the surrounding districts of his realm with repressive measures to stifle any dissent. But it was also because he mounted intensive economic ‘development’ in the areas under his rule.
Herod built or lavishly rebuilt fortresses around the countryside that he staffed with garrisons of mercenary troops. He built whole new cities named after Caesar, the seaport city of Caesarea on the Mediterranean coast and Sebaste (=Augustus) in Samaria. He built temples to Caesar in new cities and Roman institutions such as a hippodrome in Jerusalem. His most impressive building project was the massive expansion and rebuilding of the temple complex in Jerusalem, which became one of the wonders of the Roman imperial world.”
In order to pay for and build these projects, Herod “had to generate revenues far in excess of what the territory he ruled had previously produced. The demands he made on his subjects to meet his extensive expenditures ‘stimulated’ the almost exclusively agricultural economy, but they also threatened to ruin the economic base.”
Not only were the people of the region forced to pay for these projects, they were also conscripted to actually build them. (Horsley suggests that Joseph, Mary’s husband, could have been conscripted to work as a carpenter on one of the projects in Galilee, such as Sephoris or Tiberias. This might account for Joseph’s absence in the Gospels after the beginning sections of the birth narratives.)
“Revenues of the Temple and priesthood included tithes, offerings, and sacrifices. All priests, regular as well as aristocratic, received a portion of their support from the tithes and offerings. Certain choice cuts of the sacrificial animals were reserved for the priests. Many of the ordinary priests lived in villages outside Jerusalem. But all participated in the Temple sacrifices and offerings during the four weeks of pilgrimage festivals such as Passover and during two other weeks of alternating service. The pilgrimage festivals, during which Judeans (and presumably Galileans as well) were supposed to bring sacrifices and offerings to the Temple, meant considerable additional income for Jerusalem generally as well as for the Temple and priesthood.”
If these economic burdens weren’t enough, the people still had to feed themselves:
“An important additional source of income for the wealthy priests, Herodian officers still resident in Jerusalem, and other wealthy families was to make loans at hefty rates of interest. It has been reasonably surmised that resources coming into the Temple from Diaspora communities as well as from local revenues created a surplus of funds. High priestly families and others with access to such funds drew upon them to make loans to villagers who were struggling to feed their families after meeting their obligations for tribute, tithes, and offerings. From the interest charged and from foreclosure on loans, well-positioned families increased their wealth. Archeologists have found a dramatic increase in the construction of mansions in the section of Jerusalem just to the west of the temple complex during the first century.”
After the death of Herod in 4 BCE, his son, Antipas, was chosen to rule Galilee. The effect of this was that it moved the seat of local governance and taxation from Jerusalem into Galilee proper. Antipas continued his father’s building ways, and as land was acquired or foreclosed upon, he built a city to honor Tiberias, the city of Sephoris as a military outpost, a lavish palace for himself, as well as estates for political allies and trusted underlings. Richard Horsley sums it up well when he states:
“With two and sometimes three layers of rulers simultaneously making demands on them for tithes, taxes, and/or tribute, it is understandable that the Galilean and Judean people were poor, hungry, and in debt.”
An economic concept which put a further squeeze on the Galilean people, and one closely tied to honor, was that of Limited Good. Because the people had limited power for self-governance, economic viability due to being subjects of a massive empire, and a perceived lack of mobility because the land they were occupying was ancestral land; they perceived any good to be limited in nature.
“Thus broad areas of behavior are patterned in such a way as to suggest that such persons believe that in their social, economic, and natural universes—their total environment—all the desired things in life, such as land, wealth, prestige, blood, health, semen, friendship and love, manliness, honor, respect and status, power and influence, security and safety—literally all goods in life—exist in finite, limited quantity and are always in short supply.”
Limited Good is connected to Honor, because the person considered honorable is one that can maintain his/her hold on the Good in their care and stewardship. The only way to gather more Good is to take it from someone else through deception or coercion, and that is dishonorable. This concept is especially important when one considers the economic pressure on the people to keep the land they have inherited from previous generations, and yet have enough food to keep their families alive, let alone find good marital relationships for children which are generative for the long-term well-being of the family. Secondly, a family can still be considered honorable, no matter what their economic condition, as long as they are keeping what they have been given by preceding generations. Poverty is a “non-economic status,” and with it comes dishonor, or shame.
“A poor person seems to be one who cannot maintain his inherited status due to circumstances that befall him and his family, like physical accident… Thus day laborers, landless peasants, and beggars born into such situations are not poor persons in first-century society, and poor would not be an economic designation.”
The Confrontations of Jesus:
The virgin birth of Jesus is the first confrontation of social structure of first century Palestine, and is the most confrontational act of God in human history. It confronts all humanly contrived systems of validation of humanity and all of creation. God becoming human in the intimacy of conception, 9 months of gestation, then in the crisis of labor and birth; redefines and re-imagines in the most fundamental terms the statement that we are formed in the Image of God. It states that redemption is possible due to the personal nature of a loving God. If the virgin birth is not historically true, then there is no reason to believe any of scripture. The universe, then, is nothing more than math and accident, with a little chemistry thrown in. If the virgin birth didn’t occur, then Christians are the most deluded tribe of people on earth. Killing us would be cleansing the gene pool. But if it did happen, then God walked in our midst in an attempt to redeem us from ourselves and our diseased relationships… the thorny wilderness we have created for ourselves… and restore the orderly, manicured beauty of a Garden of mutual, growing relationships between God, humanity, and the rest of Creation.
The virgin birth challenges the patriarchal system of ascribing honor due to human, family heritage; changing the human perception of Jesus being a Son of David into the Son of God. It also challenges the tradition of seeking to acquire honor through manipulation and upward mobility by seeking downward mobility instead, through the action of Jesus, “who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.
Jesus appears to confront the priority of familial, and clan cohesion which wars against all other commitments by stating, “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me;”
Further, Jesus confronts the definition of family:
“While he was still speaking to the crowds, his mother and his brothers were standing outside, wanting to speak to him. Someone told him, ‘Look, your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.’ But to the one who had told him this, Jesus replied, ‘Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?’ And pointing to his disciples, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
A partial consequence of these confrontations might have been the impetus for his rejection in his hometown. The town’s people were apparently so offended by his highly public actions, and the honor bestowed on him by the numbers of people following him, that they were not able to get past his “father’s” occupation, nor that his sisters, brothers, and mother lived there.
Jesus used the system of acquiring honor to his own confrontational purpose as well. In Luke 7:36-50, a story is told of an invitation Jesus received from a local Pharisee: an act which seems to have bestowed honor upon Jesus. However, within the actual visit, there is also a subtle challenge to the honor of Jesus, as he is denied the common courtesy of providing water with which he can wash the dirt from his feet. As they are surrounding the table, “…a woman in the city, who was a sinner…” barges into the Pharisee’s house carrying an alabaster jar of ointment. She comes behind Jesus, begins to cry deeply, and washes his feet with her tears while wiping them clean with her hair and kissing them. She then pours the ointment over his feet. The Pharisee takes great offense at both the intrusion and also to the actions of the woman. He also challenges the honor of Jesus, at least in his estimation, by his inward question why Jesus would allow this type of woman to touch him in such an intimate fashion. Jesus’ parable of the debtors and creditor in response to the Pharisee’s attitude, confronts the system of challenge and response as a means of acquiring honor, by reframing the woman’s actions in terms of forgiving love, and receiving love from one forgiven.
Another confrontation of the Honor system by instituting a Mission of Receiving and Giving, is the story of the Samaritan woman Jesus met at a well, told in John 4:4-42. Actually, there are several confrontations in this story. Jesus is travelling through Samaria, on his way from Judea back to Galilee, and he stops near a well on the outskirts of a city to rest while the rest of the group go into the city to purchase food. As he rests by the well, a Samaritan woman comes to the well with a jar to draw water from it. Jesus is a stranger and alien, so would be approached with a sense of suspicion by the woman, due to the clannish nature of that time. Jesus speaks to the woman asking for water, and the woman responds. Both actions are confrontations of typical, social behavior. A stranger does not invite himself into sharing the resources of a region, he would need to be asked, or it would be considered a threatening action. The woman is bold enough to respond, and even gets into a pseudo-religious discussion with him. Both of these actions are also confrontations with accepted social practice, which expected her to stay silent as a means of protecting her purity, and leaving religious discussions in a public setting to men. When the disciples return, and find Jesus talking to the woman, they “were astonished.” The woman then leaves, without her water jar, and becomes a “missionary” to her own village. The woman is again confronting social structure by publicly proclaiming the news about Jesus. There is no textual record of Jesus sending the woman back into her village, and yet she goes. Nor does Jesus invite her to follow him, as he does on several occasions with other people, primarily men. It appears that the woman’s excitement about Jesus’ words pushed her to jettison the social proprieties of staying in the inside world of a woman, and spread the news about Jesus. She received the words of Jesus, and then gave voice to her neighbors. She was on a Mission of Receiving and Giving.
Feeding the 5,000:
The first of three confrontations I will mention is that of feeding the 5,000, from Mark 6:30-44. The story is placed just subsequent to the twelve disciples’ return from a mission which Jesus had sent them on during which he commanded they take no personal provision. As they return, Jesus invites them to “a deserted place by themselves” where they could rest, and decompress. Their time and place is interrupted by large crowds of people who had followed them along the shore as they travelled on the Sea of Galilee by boat. Jesus, moved by compassion, began to teach them when he and the disciples came ashore. As the day drew to a close and since the location was isolated, there was no place from which the crowd could get food. The scene is a very nice symbol for the concept of Limited Good as perceived by the economic culture at the time. Jesus first suggests the disciples feed the crowd, but the disciples’ response directly relates to Limited Good: “Are we to go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread, and give it to them to eat?” The suggestion is: “We have neither enough bread, nor enough money to buy it!” Jesus directly confronts the attitude of lack by sending them to find what they DO have. When they return, the amount of loaves and fish appears to be dramatically insufficient to feed the numbers of people there. Jesus’ response is to have the crowd sit down… not get busy travelling to get food, nor bargain with each other for whatever insignificant provisions their neighbor had, nor even search for food… but to sit down and do nothing. By taking the loaves and fish and looking to heaven, Jesus subtly confronts the concept behind Limited Good that the provision in life comes from human activity. The act of “looking to heaven” suggests both that God is the provider of Good in life, and the proper response from humanity is acknowledgement of that fact, and thankfulness for what God has provided; no matter how meager it seems.
Another confrontation of the economic structures common at that time is the operation used to actually feed the people. I would suggest that as Jesus broke the bread, he would keep one piece for himself, and then pass the other piece to a person next to him, who would then respond in the same manner. In so doing, each person would be nourished by God’s provision and blessing, while also being a conduit of blessing to those around them. This action models the mutuality of Eden, the receiving and gathering of manna during the Exodus, and the request in the Lord’s Prayer to “Give us, this day, our daily bread…” The result: “All ate and were filled; and they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish.” The process and result also symbolically fulfills the Abrahamic covenant of being blessed in order to be a blessing.
Jesus the Mooch:
As a first son, Jesus’ responsibility to his family, and especially his father, would have been to manage and secure his father’s inheritance, which would eventually become his own inheritance. While I believe that is what Jesus was in fact doing, as his Father’s inheritance was and is people, the perception would have been that Jesus was not being a good son to Joseph, nor fulfilling his responsibility to his mother or siblings. In fact, it doesn’t appear that after Jesus began his ministry, he ever generated any economic revenue through his own physical activity for his own support, nor that of his family. He actually seems to have been a mooch! He:
…asked a woman for water when he was travelling…
…told a tax collector he was coming to his house for dinner…
…received his support and provision from women, even a woman married to another man…
…received extravagant gifts from women…
His manner of living off the provision of other people was an economic affront to his socially perceived responsibility to his family and clan.
The Cleansing of the Temple:
The Cleansing of the Temple becomes the foremost confrontation with the established empire… that is with the manner in which it worked. The various methods used to keep the ”…people poor, hungry, and in debt,” were in a large part symbolized by Herod’s Temple. The temple tied the current economic structure of the empire to the worship of God, and expression of covenant worship. But the society did not reflect proper, practical living out of the covenant. In fact, although the Year of Jubilee seems to have continued, ways around it were being practiced:
“The sabbatical release of debts had also become regularized and widely accepted as binding on creditors. This is indicated by the famous prosbul devised as a bypass of the debt release by the Pharisaic sage Hillel, a somewhat older contemporary of Jesus. By placing loan documents into the hands of a court, creditors could then ignore the year of release. The motive for the device is often explained as the need to make credit available in the last years before the scheduled year of release. The effect over a longer period of time, however, would have been to drive the poor more deeply into debt. What the device of the prosbul indicates is that covenantal mechanisms meant to protect the people’s economic viability had become so widely accepted as law that those seeking to benefit from making loans to the poor sought ways to bypass their implementation.”
This practice also enlivens the phrase in the Lord’s Prayer to “forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” The temple, then, becomes a focal point for economic contention. It is just this confrontational act of Jesus that led to his death, which is an act of confrontation in itself:
“The ministry of Jesus is, of course, criticism that leads to radical dismantling. And as is characteristic, the guardians and profiteers of the present stability are acutely sensitive to any change that may question or challenge the present arrangement. Very early Jesus is correctly perceived as a clear and present danger to that order, and this is the problem with the promissory newness of the gospel: it never promises without threatening, in never begins without ending something, it never gives gifts without also assessing harsh costs.”
In the same way, the death of Jesus confronts the empire because it models that the new life and promise of resurrection does not come without a public crucifixion, even if the crucifixion is of an empire.
Through this exercise, I more fully understand Jesus’ statement that he came to “fulfill” the covenant, not abolish it.
“The kingdom of heaven is not, for the Jewish Jesus of Nazareth, a piece of real estate for the single saved soul; it is a communal vision of what could be and what should be. It is a vision of a time when all debts are forgiven, when we stop judging others, when we not only wear our traditions on our sleeve, but also hold them in our hearts and minds and enact them with all our strength. It is the good news that the Torah can be discussed and debated, when the Sabbath is truly honored and kept holy, when love of enemies replaces the tendency toward striking back. The vision is Jewish, and it is worth keeping as frontlets before our eyes and teaching to our children.”
We must understand the culture of Jesus’ world in order to imaginatively scrutinize our own culture, to find how Jesus speaks to the empires of today. Levine’s statement above identifies the ultimate goal of God’s people is. We must understand our own tendency to fall comfortably, and “numbly,” as Brueggemann describes it, into the dysfunctional and unsustainable cultural practices of the kingdoms of humans. Breaking through the numbness, is painful. But…
If we want the new life of resurrection…
If we want the kingdom of heaven…
If we want a “communal vision of what could be and what should be”…
We will have to experience the death of our current kingdom. Our tables must be turned over and temples cleansed, even to the point of being dismantled before something new can take their place.
Brueggemann, Walter: The Prophetic Imagination; Minneapolis, Minnesota: Fortress Press, 2001
Hanson, K.C. and Oakman, Douglas E.: Palestine in the Time of Jesus: Social Structures and Social Conflicts; Minneapolis, Minnesota: Augsburg Press, 1998.
Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version; New York, New York: HarperCollins, 2007
Horsley, Richard A.: Archaeology, History, and Society in Galilee: The Social Context of Jesus and The Rabbis; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: Trinity Press International, 1996.
Horsley, Richard A.: Covenant Economics: A Biblical Vision of Justice For All; Louisville, Kentucky: Westminster John Knox Press, 2009.
Levine, Amy-Jill: The Misunderstood Jew: The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus; New York, New York: HarperCollins, 2006
Malina, Bruce J.: The New Testament World: Insights from Cultural Anthropology; Atlanta, Georgia: John Knox Press, 1981.
McKnight, Scot: The Blue Parakeet: Rethinking How You Read the Bible; Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2008.
Stegemann, Wolfgang, Malina, Bruce J., Theissen, Gerd, editors: The Social Setting of Jesus and the Gospels; Minneapolis, Minnesota: Augsburg Fortress, 2002.
 Scot McKnight, The Blue Parakeet: Rethinking How You Read the Bible [Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2008], 57.
 Richard A. Horsley, Covenant Economics: A Biblical Vision of Justice for All [Louisville, Kentucky: Westminster John Knox Press, 2009] 87.
 Richard L. Rorhbaugh, Ethnocentrism and Historical Questions about Jesus, in The Social Setting of Jesus and The Gospels, edited by Wolfgang Stegemann, Bruce Malina, and Gerd Theissen [Minneapolis, Minnesota: Augsburg Fortress, 2002] 30.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 89.
 K.C. Hanson and Douglas E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus [Minneapolis, Minnesota: Augsburg Fortress, 1998] 21.
 Bruce J. Malina, The New Testament World: Insights from Cultural Anthropology [Atlanta, Georgia: John Knox Press, 1981] 43.
 Hanson and Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, 26.
 Hanson and Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, 31.
 Hanson and Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, 43-44.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 27.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 29.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 30.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 82-83.
 Hanson and Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, 66-68.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 82-83.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 83-84.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 84.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 87.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 85.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 86.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 87-88.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 88.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 75.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 84.
 Malina, The New Testament World, 85.
 Philippians 2:6-7; Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version [New York, New York, HarperCollins Publishers, 2007] 258
 Matthew 10:34-37; NRSV
 Matthew 12:46-50; NRSV
 Matthew 13:54-58; NRSV
 Luke 7:37; NRSV
 Luke 4:27; NRSV
 Mark 6:32; NRSV
 Mark 6:37; NRSV
 Mark 6:42-43; NRSV
 Genesis 12:2; NRSV
 John 4:7; NRSV
 Luke 19:1-9; NRSV
 Matthew 27:57-61; Mark 15:40-41; Luke 8:1-3; NRSV
 Matthew 26:6-13; Mark 14:3-9; Luke 7:36-50; John 12:1-8; NRSV
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 88.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 93.
 Horsley, Covenant Economics, 95, 99.
 Walter Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination [Minneapolis, Minnesota: Fortress Press, 2001] 84.
 Amy-Jill Levine, The Misunderstood Jew: The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus [New York, New York: HarperCollins, 2006] 51-52.