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Old 08-08-2001, 07:10 PM   #11
boneyard bill
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The Gospels and other New Testament works weren't the only scripture around. There are many writings that didn't make it into the New Testament. In the early days of Christianity different groups had a written scripture that formed the basis of their belief. John's epistle's, for example, were written in part to convince the early Apostolic Church that their gospel was not a gnostic one (It has many affinities with gnostic phraseology and thought). To accept the Johannine sect into the church meant accepting their gospel as well.

It was hundreds of years before the final New Testament was decided upon, and the final decision seems to have rested on each's book's conformity with the evolving Christian doctrine. The problem of literal inconsistencies would have been of lesser concern when most people couldn't read the Bible anyway.

At least one scholar (I can't remember who) has suggested that the physical resurrection story was needed to invalidate the resurrection claims of second and third generation Christians. If a non-physical resurrection experience was valid, then anyone could claim to have experienced the risen Christ, and they would be on the same level as the Apostles. This doesn't work very well for a church claiming the Apostles as their authority. By the time of Luke we need a resurrection but also an ascension to establish that Jesus is now in heaven and he's going to stay there for a long, long while.
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Old 08-08-2001, 10:55 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rich:

Don-

If we take your assertion on conflicting viewpoints as being proof of the resurrection story being false, then why were they not fixed?
If you can find any place that I have made that assertion, any place that I have ever said anything about conflicting viewpoints (your words) or "inconsistencies in details" (my words) being "proof of the resurrection story being false," then your question would have a point and I would feel compelled to answer. As it stands, however, I know of no time or place that I have ever made such an overreaching assertion. Please go back and read what I actually did say. I try to carefully qualify what I say (although I'm not infallible), and I generally say such things as: "Briefly, my personal reasons for doubting the Resurrection," and "There are far too many inconsistencies in detail between what one biblical author and another tells us about the alleged Resurrection for me to be able take it seriously. In fact, there are so many inconsistencies that the story has the earmarks of fiction. A perfect and omnipotent god could have, should have, and likely would have seen to it that the authors he allegedly inspired got the details of something as important as the alleged Resurrection right."

Still, your question represents an appeal to ignorance and whether I could or could not answer it would not affect the validity of my reasons for doubting the Resurrection.

Quote:
I have read various articles on the site and seen feedback from users who assert that much of the NT was contrived around an established belief system and various details of events were manipulated in order to envoke/substain belief. Why if this was the intention of the writer(s), didn't they get it right (e.g. make accounts match up)?
The speculative opinions of others are not something that I need answer for, and your question represents an appeal to ignorance anyway. Whether I could or could not answer your question would say nothing necessarily about the truth of those speculative opinions.

--Don--
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Old 08-08-2001, 11:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rich:
In light of what I have read a 4th grader could have "fixed" those inconsistencies more thoroughly than they supposedly were.
Probably so, but keep in mind that the authors of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John were not likely aware that what they wrote was going to be compiled into a "Bible," and keep in mind that when the canon was settled, the books were already in use and considered to be inspired by or the word of "God." The idea was to preserve them in their original states, although there is nevertheless some evident tampering.

Quote:
On one hand you imply that these men had little intelligence (or at least not enough to fix the accounts of- let's say the resurrection appearances to all say the same thing) and on the other (and this may or may not reflect your view but it does many) that they concocted this vast conspiracy to control people and get their money.
Where, exactly, does turtonm allegedly imply this?

Quote:
I am stuck with this dilema...how did a bunch of poor, uneducated fisherman concoct a grand scheme which somehow survived (flourished actually while various other weird sects were quickly lost) for 2000 years through various cultures with a book that is obviously inconsistent?
You are really fond of appeals to ignorance, aren't you. Since you seem to be so fond of them, how does it happen that Judaism has survived so long (much longer than Christianity) given the obvious inconsistencies in the Jewish Scriptures? How does it happen that Mormonism was able to get going and is flourishing with the obvious inconsistencies in the testimony of those whose testimonies appear in the foreward to the Book of Mormon (not to mention the inconsistencies in the Book itself). How does it happen that Islam was able to establish itself and flourish to the point that it will likely overtake Christianity in terms of number of adherents with the inconsistencies in the Koran?

--Don--
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Old 08-09-2001, 06:12 AM   #14
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Don-

All I can say is your responses are crappy...here's why:

-Regardless of whether you state it or not they are based upon some pre-formed image you have in your head of who I am and what I think. I am not here to "defend" Christianity. I have honest questions and I am searching for truth. To call my questions an appeal to ignorance is totally egotistical. You will not "honor" me with your thoughts? That is your choice and I respect that, the next time I have a question I will not address it to you.

-You twist words to make them suit your purpose. The intent of my post was not to accuse you of anything (why so defensive?) but rather to clarify your position. Maybe I misunderstood what you were saying...do you ever do this? Is an appropriate response to jump down someone's throat? No one has absolute truth and I was looking for your opinion...so why act that way?

It's pretty ironic that you (and some others on these boards) suffer from the same intolerance you accuse theists of. I can't stand Christians who think they know it all or are too intelligent to answer my "simple, ignorant" questions. I was never trying to disrespect you...maybe you could afford me that same "luxury"?!
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Old 08-09-2001, 06:45 AM   #15
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Don,

I have interacted with Rich on II and Christian message boards. He has always shown himself to be an honest and intelligent seeker. I believe that his questions are sincere attempts to understand.(He also doesn't hesitate to give Christians hell for their intolerance and willful ignorance!)

Just thought you might want to know.

John
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Old 08-09-2001, 03:04 PM   #16
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Hello Rich

You may wish to considder that Jesus died and Christ arose.

Christ was born into the human nature of Joseph the carpenter which made possible the dual man-god nature of Jesus. To become fully God the human nature needed to die and thus the crucifixion of the humanity set free the God identity called Christ.

If you accept this you may wish to re-examen the rest of your interpretations because they may all be wrong.

Amos

[ August 09, 2001: Message edited by: Amos123 ]
 
Old 08-09-2001, 04:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rich:
Don-

All I can say is your responses are crappy...here's why:

-Regardless of whether you state it or not they are based upon some pre-formed image you have in your head of who I am and what I think.
What is the "it"?
What it the "they"?
Are you omniscient?

(And if you are not omniscient, then quit pretending to be by telling me what I have in my head.)

Quote:
I am not here to "defend" Christianity. I have honest questions and I am searching for truth. To call my questions an appeal to ignorance is totally egotistical.
On the contrary, "appeal to ignorance" represents one of the basic reasoning fallacies (which is explained in many books on reasoning). It has nothing whatsoever to do with egotism but with your questions and their phrasing.

Quote:
You will not "honor" me with your thoughts?
Really? Where, exactly, did I say that? Please note, what I did talk about was not my thoughts but answering for the opinions of others.

Quote:
You twist words to make them suit your purpose.
I think you are projecting inasmuch as that is exactly what you did. You said, "If we take your assertion on conflicting viewpoints as being proof of the resurrection story being false, then why were they not fixed?"--when the fact is that I made no such assertion.

(I notice, by the way, that you have neither corrected your erroneous assertion nor apologized for attributing to me what should never have been attributed to me.)

Quote:
The intent of my post was not to accuse you of anything (why so defensive?) but rather to clarify your position.
You don't clarify someone's position by misrepresenting what they say. If you want clarification, you ask the person in question to clarify his/her position.

And why so defensive? I'll tell you why: it is because one so-called Christian after another who has come here has engaged in twisting, distorting, misrepresenting not only my position but that of other participants. It's almost as if it is a communicable disease amongst Christians who come here. And like athlete's foot, it gets old after awhile having to defend oneself--not for what one did say--but against what one did not say. I want to make absolutely sure from the outset that I don't get involved deeper and deeper with someone who can't keep separate what I have actually said from what that someone believes about me.

Quote:
Maybe I misunderstood what you were saying...do you ever do this?
We all make mistakes, but on the other hand it takes very little effort to actually quote what someone says and respond to that rather than paraphrasing what you think s/he meant.

Quote:
Is an appropriate response to jump down someone's throat?
In my opinion--when one makes as many errors as quickly as you have--yes, it is.

Quote:
No one has absolute truth and I was looking for your opinion...so why act that way?
Then ask instead of tell. And keep in mind that nowhere in the first two posts of yours (to turtonm and to me) to which I responded did you actually ask for my opinion. And you misrepresented both of us, first turtonm with regard to what he allegedly implied and then me with your false allegation as to my "assertion."

Quote:
It's pretty ironic that you (and some others on these boards) suffer from the same intolerance you accuse theists of.
Really? Are you omniscient again? What intolerance have I accused theists of exactly?

Quote:
I can't stand Christians who think they know it all or are too intelligent to answer my "simple, ignorant" questions. I was never trying to disrespect you...maybe you could afford me that same "luxury"?!
I can't stand people (regardless of their religious orientation or lack of it) who mind-read and misrepresent what others say and then want to carry on a discussion.

-----------

You are certainly welcome to take part in the discussions here, however, but keep in mind that I, for one, will expect you to go by what was actually said, not what you infer that someone implied or what you claim was asserted when it was not--especially if you are just going to let it stand without addressing it directly to correct it.

--Don--

[ August 09, 2001: Message edited by: Donald Morgan ]
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Old 08-09-2001, 08:33 PM   #18
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Don-

I will not quote your long reply because it is just more garbage to make yourself look better and me look like some short-sighted Christian jackass.

Here is my defense of my first post:
from dictionary.com
assertion n 2: the act of affirming or asserting or stating something [syn: affirmation, statement]

Your post IMO fit this definition regardless of whether it is your opinion. It is as simply as you made a statement of what you perceive as true- hence an assertion.

you said (in your original post):
Quote:
2.) INCONSISTENCY. There are far too many inconsistencies in detail between what one biblical author and another tells us about the alleged Resurrection for me to be able take it seriously. In fact, there are so many inconsistencies that the story has the earmarks of fiction. A perfect and omnipotent god could have, should have, and likely would have seen to it that the authors he allegedly inspired got the details of something as important as the alleged Resurrection right. [See Selected Inconsistencies, below.]
[bolding is mine]

to which I replied:
Quote:
If we take your assertion on conflicting viewpoints as being proof of the resurrection story being false, then why were they not fixed?
It is not a huge leap to say "inconsistencies in detail between what one biblical author and another" (your words)is the same as "conflicting viewpoints" (my words). You may differ in your opinion but there are plenty of intelligent people who have seen my post and have not seen it as some sort of gross misrepresentation.

Your reply showed me that you have no desire to dialogue with me and I respect that. I am not here to be your friend, but to seek knowledge (which unlike your view of me, I actually think you possess some). Obviously you have a low opinion of me and my motivations for being here, and that's too bad. You obviously don't consider the opinions of me by your fellow freethinkers to hold much weight either.

I am not omniscient...in fact I have a lot to learn...you remind me of many fundamentalists that I have known that also ostracize me for asking tough questions. I am starting to believe that you are simply one of them (in atheist's clothing of course). I will make sure not to "bother" you anymore with my "ignorant" posts.
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Old 08-09-2001, 10:28 PM   #19
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Don,

I honestly think that you should give Rich at least the benefit of the doubt. He has defended some of my posts on the 711 boards and he seems to be a reasonable person.

While I agree that some people deliberately distort other's words or intentions, paraphrasing is a legitimate communication tool to demonstrate understanding (or misunderstanding). If someone paraphrases you and you see that they have got you wrong, why not first assume a misunderstanding before reaching for the six guns?

David
<hoping that he has not poured fuel on the dispute but knowing that he probably has>
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Old 08-09-2001, 11:37 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by David Gould:
Don,

I honestly think that you should give Rich at least the benefit of the doubt.
And how have I denied him the benefit of the doubt (if that is, in fact, what you intend to imply)?

Quote:
He has defended some of my posts on the 711 boards and he seems to be a reasonable person.
I'm not interested so much in whether someone agrees with me or defends my posts as I am in not having to defend a position I don't hold.

Quote:
While I agree that some people deliberately distort other's words or intentions, paraphrasing is a legitimate communication tool to demonstrate understanding (or misunderstanding). If someone paraphrases you and you see that they have got you wrong, why not first assume a misunderstanding before reaching for the six guns?
I do first assume a misunderstanding, but I have seen this kind of misunderstanding so much and so often on the part of some people (Christians, specifically, even though Rich may not be a Christian)--and it gets so burdensome trying to defend oneself against misrepresentations and straw man arguments--that I just don't want to get involved with someone who is going to do that.

Based on my experience in the past, people who get it wrong the first time around seem to tend to continue getting it wrong. And in Rich's case this is already proving to be the case.

Quote:
David
<hoping that he has not poured fuel on the dispute but knowing that he probably has>
I don't mind in the least that you bring this up.

--Don--
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