Original Research - Special Collection: Eben Scheffler Festschrift

Syncrisis as literary motif in the story about the grown-up child Jesus in the temple (Luke 2:41–52 and the Thomas tradition)

Andries G. van Aarde
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 75, No 3 | a5258 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v75i3.5258 | © 2019 Andries G. Van Aarde | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 September 2018 | Published: 18 February 2019

About the author(s)

Andries G. van Aarde, Department of New Testament Studies, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Syncrisis as literary motif in the story about the grown-up child Jesus in the temple (Lk 2:41–52 and the Thomas tradition): The article explores hermeneutical solutions for the negative response from the child Jesus towards his biological parents in the Lukan temple story (Lk 2:41–52). The ‘wisdom’ of the child who acts in an ‘adult-like’ way is interpreted as a syncrisis. This literary motif is explained by an analysis of the contrasting positive and negative acts of the child Jesus towards teachers of the Torah in the Infancy Gospel of Thomas.

Keywords

Lukan temple story; Luke 2:41–52; Infancy Gospel of Thomas; syncrisis as literary motif; myth of the god-child

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