originally posted by: Akragon
What evidence does anyone have of John using a different calendar... him being an observant jew
The evidence that John was counting his hours from midnight, following the Roman civil day, lies in the fact that ONLY that assumption makes sense of
the four different time references in John's gospel.
Taking them in the same order that Westcott does;
In ch1 v39, two of the disciples of John visit the place where Jesus stays, "at about the tenth hour", and stay with him for the rest of the day. But
the idea of staying with him "that day" is slightly absurd if the tenth hour is nearly sunset and the day is almost over. It is much more appropriate
if the tenth hour is ten o'clock in the morning.
In ch4 v6, Jesus is talking to the woman at the well at "about the sixth hour".
This would be noon, on the Jewish system of counting, and about sunset if the hours were being counted from midnight and midday.
Sunset would have been the normal time for women to fetch water.
Admittedly some preachers like to make a big deal out of the idea that she was so full of shame that she was deliberately avoiding all the other
But other people were obviously around, because the disciples were surprised that nobody else had been intervening in the conversation.
The more natural explanation is that this was sunset, the disciples were buying food at the end of a day's journey, and the woman was fetching water
at the same time as everybody else.
In ch4 v52, Jesus speaks to a nobleman, and his son begins to heal, "at the seventh hour".
The sequel makes much more sense if this means seven o'clock in the evening. The man travelled back home the next day, and was met by his servants,
who told him that his son began to improve "yesterday".
On the Jewish method, the servants are using the odd word "yesterday" to describe one o'clock in the afternoon of what we would call the same day.
Finally, in ch19 v14, it makes good sense that after being brought to Pilate early in the morning, Jesus should be displayed to the mob at about dawn
("the sixth hour"), leaving plenty of time to be crucfied at noon (the Marcan "sixth hour") and die at about three o'clock in the afternoon (the
Marcan "ninth hour").
Westcott is also able to quote accounts of martyrdom which are evidently using the same "counting from midnight" system.
These come from Smyrna, so it looks like a practice of that same province of Asia Minor that is associated with John.
(For that matter, you yourself, in the OP, assume that Mark is using the non-Jewish "counting from midnight" system. You identify "ninth hour" with
"nine o'clock in the morning". So even on your own theory, at least one of the gospels was using it)
Lets also consider "The gospel of John" likely wasn't written by John...
How on earth does this thought affect the question one way or the other?
And if it doesn't affect the question, why did you put it in?
If anything, it undermines your other point, because it leaves you without any evidence that he was an observant Jew.
edit on 13-8-2014 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)