In the previous post I mentioned that I first got interested in the textual problem of Luke 22:43-44 (“the bloody sweat”) when I was taking a graduate seminar at Princeton Theological Seminary, my first year in the doctoral program.  The seminar was devoted (the entire semester) to the Greek exegesis (interpretation) of Luke.  My fellow student, Mark Plunkett, presented a seminar paper in which he dealt with the passage.  He was not at all interested in the textual question of whether vv. 43-44 were original.  He was assuming that they were not, but it had nothing to do with his presentation.

In his presentation he argued that there was a clear structure to the passage of Jesus’ prayer before being arrested (in Luke’s source this takes place in the Garden of Gethsemane, but Luke doesn’t say so) and he made a convincing argument (to my mind).  And then I realized that the structural argument was relevant to the textual problem of whether the verses were original or not.  While we moved on to other things in the seminar that afternoon, and someone else was talking, I leaned over to Mark and told him what I had just realized, and told him we should write an article on it.  He had the structural argument, and I knew the textual situation with the manuscripts and so on.  Neither of us had ever written an article before.  So we decided to do it.

His structural argument was that the passage was

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