Date: Fri, 28 Nov 1997 17:17:19 -0500 From: email@example.com To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Lietzmann on the eucharist Crosstalkers, The work of Hans Lietzmann on the eucharist is quite important. So I'm posting here a summary of his work as provided by Robert Douglas Richardson in AUTHOR: Lietzmann, Hans, 1875-1942. UNIFORM TITLE: Messe und Herrenmahl. English TITLE: Mass and Lord's Supper : a study in the history of the liturgy / by Hans Lietzmann ; translation with appendices by Dorothea H. G. Reeve ; with introd. and further inquiry by Robert Douglas Richardson. -- PUBLISHED: Leiden : E. J. Brill, 1979. PAGING: xxvi, 753 p. NOTES: "Part I (pp. xxv-xxvi, 1-215) was originally published in 1926 under the title of Messe und Herrenmahl: eine Studie zur Geschichte der Liturgie." Of course scholarship moved forward since that time. So we must also try to see how Lietzmann's work may be seen now in light of the more recent research by van Cangh, and S. Dockx some of which I already summarized. More about this later. Here's one summary by Richardson of Lietzmann's key ideas about the eucharist, ... Lietzmann's examination of all the associated liturgies for the purpose of discovering their oldest strata results in his ultimately classifying them into two main types -- an early Egyptian and a "Western", Sarapion being the main representative of the first and Hippolytus of the second. Each of these two types he traces to its ultimate characteristic source, Sarapion's in Didache 9-10 Tom, please note that it is assumed here that the Didache contains the earliest version of the eucharist, what Lietzmann calls "the Jerusalem type of eucharist" (e.g on p. 252 in the German text). and Hippolytus' in 1 Cor 10--11. Finally, behind Didache he claims to show the "Breaking of Bread" of the first disciples with the risen Lord -- which continued the table-fellowship of Jesus' _haburah_ in His lifetime; and behind 1 Cor 11 the last such fellowship-supper only -- whose re-enactment as a different kind of rite he attributes to St. Paul. Thus the roots of an irreconcilable duality between the conception of the Agape, or Lord's Supper, and that of the Mass, are found by Lietzmann within the NT itself. (p. XIII) Here's a clarification about the two types of Jewish ritual meals: ...the agape is not founded on the Sabbath meal with its wine-_kiddush_ but on the meal invested with religious solemnity which might be held at any time by a company of friends (_haburah_). (p. XVII) And here's a summary of Lietzmann's very important Chapter 16, as provided by Richardson: The development of the Lord's Supper can now be reconstructed. The table-fellowship of Jesus' haburah in his lifetime was continued with him as the risen Lord. Ideas of Hellenistic origin were quickly added and the celebration was regarded as a sacrifice indwelt by the "Name" or "Power" of the Lord, thus conferring spiritual benefits upon "holy" participants. There was also, from the earliest days of the Church, a second development, connected with only the last haburah-meal of Jesus; it proclaimed His covenant-death; also his resurrection and parousia. The memorial meals to founders of religious communities customary in the hellenistic world affected its practice, and it too developed sacrificially; so the _corpus mysticum_ of the Church came into being and the symbolic words of Jesus at the Last Supper were taken to describe spiritual realities. This [is the] second type [of eucharist] ... 1 Cor 11 shows [this second] type to be almost as primitive as that of the original disciples. The creator of this type was Paul; and the idea of it came to him "by revelation". The first type survived only in Jewish spheres and in Egypt, which Paul never visited. (p. XIX) The basic thing that I think remains valid in this account is that there are two basic types of eucharistic liturgy. But Lietzmann assumed there was only one cup of wine in the early NT accounts. This analysis can now be improved upon, and van Cangh has done this by pointing to the second cup of the eucharist that is still discernable in our NT sources. Also, Lietzmann believed that the earliest version of all was the meal without wine, where the bread provided the most important symbol -- something similar to a ritual based on the miracles of feeding of the multitudes by Jesus, preserved in various gospel accounts. This is the "water instead of wine eucharist". Actually, the use of water did not have a special meaning, as far as I can see. Since bread was the key symbol in this type of a ritual, other things could be added, including water, milk, and even cheese. But there's no reason we should accept this theory of Lietzmann as unquestionably proven. Lietzmann is basing this theory on his analysis of rather late apocryphal gospels where this type of ritual is commonly found. (ACTS OF JOHN, 109-110; ACTS OF THOMAS, 133, etc.; discussed in Lietzmann's text in Ch. 15.) I think the question remains open if this ritual based on bread alone (plus other things added at will) is really the earliest version. Certainly I don't see why we should privilege the apocryphal gospels at the expense of the canonicals, where such other rituals are not in evidence (as far as I know). So now, let's come back to van Cangh, and S. Dockx. They demonstrate that there are in fact two very different cups that are found in our NT accounts of the Lord's Supper. I already quoted this by van Cangh before: ...une coupe eschatologique qui faisait partie du re'cit pascal (ou festif) primitif (Mc 14,25; Lc 22,18) et une coupe eucharistique, qui a e'te' ajoute'e sous l'influence de la liturgie, avec les paroles interpre'tatives sur le vin ("Ceci est mon sang" Mc 14,24...) (p. 623) "Eschatological cup", is the one that was a part of the earliest narrative, while the "eucharistic cup" is the one that came later under the influence of the liturgy, according to van Cangh. Since there are two cups in the earliest accounts of the eucharist, this indicates to me that these accounts were based on the traditional Jewish Passover meal that contains in all 4 cups of wine. Van Cangh actually believes that the earliest eucharist was based on the actual Passover meal Jesus had with his disciples prior to his arrest, La tradition d'un repas pris par Je'sus le soir pre'ce'dant sa Passion a toutes les chances d'e^tre historique. (pp. 626-7) Van Cangh continues, saying this was a typical Jewish meal, in which Jesus broke the bread for his disciples, as it is done in typical Jewish meals by the person at the head of the table who is administering the Seder, Ce repas est un repas typiquement juif, o`u Je'sus be'nit le pain et le rompit pour ses disciples (Mc 14,22 par.). (p. 627) There are also other ways in which the latest research by van Cangh, and S. Dockx can be integrated with the findings of Lietzmann that were, after all, arrived at quite some time ago. This new research can certainly clarify and add to the theories Lietzmann was formulating, and improve them further. I must say that right now I'm quite busy trying to integrate all this material and research it further. This eucharist research goes to the very heart of the history of early Christianity. It bears on great many very important matters, and the more one looks into this, the more new relevant matters are getting involved. In particular, I'm currently looking at the martyrdom of Stephen, and the events associated with this: the split betwen the Hellenists and the more orthodox Jewish-Christians. Also, the Historical Paul looms large in all of this. While I don't think he really contributed to the martyrdom of Stephen, as the Book of Acts would have it, he was clearly directly involved in this Hellenist controversy at a later stage, and his epistles are just about the only reasonably trustworthy source we have on what really happened... All this, and much more of course, is raised by this eucharist investigation. This is a big project indeed... Best regards, Yuri.Click here to go one level up in the directory.