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Old 03-24-2001, 04:32 PM   #161
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by rodahi:
You have presented a false assumption. Why assume that because someone has come back to life after dying he/she would go to "heaven?" Please explain why Jesus could not have come back from the dead and remained on earth.
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Hi rodahi,

I didn't say Jesus COULD not have remained on earth, I said he DID not remain on earth. This ties into the whole issue I brought up about telling god how to run things. We don't make those decisions. I believe he did go to heaven based on the earliest testimony in Luke/Acts. This work was written by someone who presumably knew the earliest disciples either firsthand or secondhand, and therefore would have access to the information.

This thread was on the historical method until it splintered into innumerable pieces. Do you have any comments on that topic?

Peace,

Polycarp

 
Old 03-25-2001, 06:26 AM   #162
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Polycarp and Layman:

I responded in the new thread started by Bede. Just seemed more sensible, than to let this one swell to an unwieldy ten pages.

Michael
 
Old 03-25-2001, 08:39 AM   #163
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by Polycarp:
Hi rodahi,
I didn't say Jesus COULD not have remained on earth, I said he DID not remain on earth.


No, you said, "If Jesus rose from the dead, then he is not on earth, but in heaven."

Just because someone allegedly dies and comes back to life that does not mean that person will "rise" to the sky. It simply means that person has come back to life.

This ties into the whole issue I brought up about telling god how to run things.

NO ONE has demonstrated the existence of a god; therefore, no one is "telling god how to run things" anymore than someone is telling the Easter Bunny how to run things.

We don't make those decisions.

WE make all decisions.

I believe he did go to heaven based on the earliest testimony in Luke/Acts. This work was written by someone who presumably knew the earliest disciples either firsthand or secondhand, and therefore would have access to the information.

You have every right to your BELIEF system, but to base your beliefs on the words of ONE person--the writer of Luke/Acts--is the epitome of gullibility.

rodahi
 
Old 03-25-2001, 01:39 PM   #164
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by rodahi:
You have every right to your BELIEF system, but to base your beliefs on the words of ONE person--the writer of Luke/Acts--is the epitome of gullibility.
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Your opinion is duly noted. Now did you want to comment on the historical method ?

Peace,

Polycarp

 
Old 03-25-2001, 08:23 PM   #165
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[Polycarp:]
I didn't say Jesus COULD not have remained on earth, I said he DID not remain on earth. This ties into the whole issue I brought up about telling god how to run things. ...

[LP:]
That's a common bit of theological illogic. Theorizing about what some entity could have done is NOT the same as controlling it. After all, if Polycarp theorizes about what I'm likely to do, he is not controlling me when he does that.
 
Old 03-26-2001, 08:48 AM   #166
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Layman - I did answer your question - I am a fideist.

I did read meier over the weekend - I think he has a bit of wisdom that you have not quite appropriated - let me share it with you.

Open up vol 1 of a Marginal Jew and go to the summary chapter of section 1 - the one where he asks the question why bother? Notice his answer - the Christ of the historical method is not the Christ of faith - can never be. So what good is the historical quest? Notice what he says and what he does not say:
he says that there is something to be gained from a theological - christological - vantage. But note what's missing: there is no hint of this historical Jesus being an apologetic tool. why not? well, the answer is simple, and I think Meier is dimly aware of it, and I give him credit for it:
the historical method is inadequate to give sufficient warrant for faith. Notice I said sufficient:
do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions?
You claimed that the historical method gave you 'sufficient' evidence - I deny that it does - please follow:
Let's say for the sake of your argument that your historical method can actually prove that jesus performed miracles and was resurrected: is this sufficient to conclude that Jesus is the Messiah? No - read Deut 13 and take a lesson from the NT accounts of the cautiousness of the Jewish leaders who were not so much interested in debunking his miracles as they were trying to hash out Jesus theology: was he a blasphemer or not?

Deut 13 says that a prophet can indeed perform signs and wonders and still be false (his theology, etc....), other sections of the Bible teach that demons can perform miracles, etc...

So, things like miracles, and resurrection, are, let's be honest, necessary but not sufficient conditions of Messiahship.

In logic 101 we can represent the above via a simple argument:
If Jesus is the Messiah then He will perfom miracles and be resurrected.

Note that the consequent is the necessary condition - but not sufficient. But what's the argument your methods propose?
If Jesus is the Messiah then he performs miracles, he did perform miracles therefore, he is the Messiah.
Alas, affirming the consequent is a fallacy.
And fallacious arguments not only don't work against atheists or fideists, but they cannot lay a foundation for your own faith.
Claims that they give more 'probabiliy' are specious at best: a string of fallacies is a string of fallacies.
Now, bring that together with Meier's points: the historical method perhaps can enhance our theological doctrines (as those who already believe), but as an apologetic -that is, as a presentation of adequate and sufficient reasons for faith - fails utterly.

Perhaps if you were to become clear on this catefory mistake, as Meier seems aware (in my estimation), you'd realize that an apologetic program that uses your historical methods cannot get off the ground. Perhaps you can say something within the paradigm of faith as per christology (I myself like Meiers' #2 in that chapter - christ's humanity) but even there the usefulness is open to debate and change as Meier says.......

Thank you
 
Old 03-26-2001, 09:07 AM   #167
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by jmcanany:
Layman - I did answer your question - I am a fideist.

I did read meier over the weekend - I think he has a bit of wisdom that you have not quite appropriated - let me share it with you.

Open up vol 1 of a Marginal Jew and go to the summary chapter of section 1 - the one where he asks the question why bother? Notice his answer - the Christ of the historical method is not the Christ of faith - can never be. So what good is the historical quest? Notice what he says and what he does not say:
he says that there is something to be gained from a theological - christological - vantage. But note what's missing: there is no hint of this historical Jesus being an apologetic tool. why not? well, the answer is simple, and I think Meier is dimly aware of it, and I give him credit for it:
the historical method is inadequate to give sufficient warrant for faith. Notice I said sufficient:
do you know the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions?
You claimed that the historical method gave you 'sufficient' evidence - I deny that it does - please follow:
Let's say for the sake of your argument that your historical method can actually prove that jesus performed miracles and was resurrected: is this sufficient to conclude that Jesus is the Messiah? No - read Deut 13 and take a lesson from the NT accounts of the cautiousness of the Jewish leaders who were not so much interested in debunking his miracles as they were trying to hash out Jesus theology: was he a blasphemer or not?

Deut 13 says that a prophet can indeed perform signs and wonders and still be false (his theology, etc....), other sections of the Bible teach that demons can perform miracles, etc...

So, things like miracles, and resurrection, are, let's be honest, necessary but not sufficient conditions of Messiahship.

In logic 101 we can represent the above via a simple argument:
If Jesus is the Messiah then He will perfom miracles and be resurrected.

Note that the consequent is the necessary condition - but not sufficient. But what's the argument your methods propose?
If Jesus is the Messiah then he performs miracles, he did perform miracles therefore, he is the Messiah.
Alas, affirming the consequent is a fallacy.
And fallacious arguments not only don't work against atheists or fideists, but they cannot lay a foundation for your own faith.
Claims that they give more 'probabiliy' are specious at best: a string of fallacies is a string of fallacies.
Now, bring that together with Meier's points: the historical method perhaps can enhance our theological doctrines (as those who already believe), but as an apologetic -that is, as a presentation of adequate and sufficient reasons for faith - fails utterly.

Perhaps if you were to become clear on this catefory mistake, as Meier seems aware (in my estimation), you'd realize that an apologetic program that uses your historical methods cannot get off the ground. Perhaps you can say something within the paradigm of faith as per christology (I myself like Meiers' #2 in that chapter - christ's humanity) but even there the usefulness is open to debate and change as Meier says.......

Thank you
</font>
I appreciate your response.

Let me clarify my opinion. I have yet to claim that the simple fact that Jesus performed miracles means that he is the messiah. The argument is much more complicated than that.

And, if you remember our first conversation, I expressly stated that my faith had a subective component. However, I disagree with fidism that faith should ignore the evidence. And I have stated several times that one of Meier's assumptions is that history cannot "prove" Jesus' miracles.

I would say that I am surprised that, as a Christian, you seem intent on undermining your fellow believers on this website. Or, because we rely on reason, are we not true Christians? Do you view agreeing with atheists against other Christians as an effective evanglelism tool?
 
Old 03-26-2001, 11:13 AM   #168
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Layman - as one believer to another:
I am intent on being very true to 'reason': an evangleism/apologetic that is built on fallacies is fallacious at best. You are the one who claims to have sufficient evidence based on this 'historical' stuff for your worship. I pointed out (in many ways) that such is obviously not the case.
In all respect to reason, it is actually I, the fideist, who is true to reason, whereas you who claim to be 'reasonable' are abusing reason to suit your own purposes.
No, I don't undermine your faith, I undermine your fallacious arguments. I point out your category mistakes, and point out that as an apologetic, your methods are wholly inadequate.
If this does not bolster your faith, hopefully it will make you think before you make claims that cannot be adequately supported by your 'methods'.......
Many thanks.

PS - as a fideist who respects reason, I will let you know that I did not ignore the evidence: I carefully weighed it and found it inadequate for the use you put to it, and, I already let you know that, even as a fideist, I was more than willing to allow Meier's point about theology......
btw where does Meier ever call what he is doing 'evangelism'? Huh? In this he has shown much more wisdom than yourself....
 
Old 03-26-2001, 11:24 AM   #169
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by jmcanany:
Layman - as one believer to another:
I am intent on being very true to 'reason': an evangleism/apologetic that is built on fallacies is fallacious at best. You are the one who claims to have sufficient evidence based on this 'historical' stuff for your worship. I pointed out (in many ways) that such is obviously not the case.
In all respect to reason, it is actually I, the fideist, who is true to reason, whereas you who claim to be 'reasonable' are abusing reason to suit your own purposes.
No, I don't undermine your faith, I undermine your fallacious arguments. I point out your category mistakes, and point out that as an apologetic, your methods are wholly inadequate.
If this does not bolster your faith, hopefully it will make you think before you make claims that cannot be adequately supported by your 'methods'.......
Many thanks.

PS - as a fideist who respects reason, I will let you know that I did not ignore the evidence: I carefully weighed it and found it inadequate for the use you put to it, and, I already let you know that, even as a fideist, I was more than willing to allow Meier's point about theology......
btw where does Meier ever call what he is doing 'evangelism'? Huh? In this he has shown much more wisdom than yourself....
</font>
Actually I haven't noticed you discussing the evidence much at all, at least not in response to my posts. And you have misconstrued my position. I informed you that my faith had a subjective component to it and that Jesus' miracles cannot be proved to a certainty by history, but my faith does not ignore the historical evidence. Many Christians have been told that there is no historical evidence for their faith. They have also been told that the New Testament is just a bunch of myths. They have been told that Paul invented Christianity. Responding to these arguments and demonstrating that they are wrong encourages other Christians in their faith, and hopefully removes some persons' objections to Christianity. There are useful and valid goals, and they are supported by the evidence.

And no, you have not hurt my faith. Largely because you have failed to discuss the evidence.

If you find my methods of apologetics inadequate, perhaps you would be better off demonstrating the superiority of your own, rather than attacking your Christian brother and sisters who do not share your view of apologetics. I would rather see internal debates about our faith settled as an internal matter, you choose to do so in our opponents stronghold. Perhaps an exchange of email would be a better approach?

And isn't a fideist who respects reason a contradiction in terms?
 
Old 03-26-2001, 02:29 PM   #170
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Many Christians have been told that there is no historical evidence for their faith

Showing Christians that, yes, there is some (as opposed to no) 'historical evidence' for some of their beliefs (as already held), is certainly not the same as to say (as you have) that the historical evidence provides sufficient warrant for having faith.
Btw it's Meier himself in his "why bother" who denies 'historical evidence' as a grounds or warrant for establishing faith. Rather, he affirms that perhaps the 'historical Jesus' is useful for theology for those who already have faith.
 
 

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