FRDB Archives

Freethought & Rationalism Archive

The archives are read only.


Go Back   FRDB Archives > Archives > Biblical Criticism - 2001
Welcome, Peter Kirby.
You last visited: Today at 05:55 AM

Notices

 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-13-2001, 03:18 AM   #1
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post The 411 on Jesus

I have explained these points again and again to Christians when speaking of the historicity of Jesus, but they just ignore them. However, I've proven beyond any rational doubt that:
There was nothing supernatural about Jesus, he is not part of some plan by God, he did not rise from the dead, and most important of all:
THE NEW TESTIMENT IS NOT A MESSAGE FROM GOD!

The following are reasons why all of the above statements are true - basically why the New Testiment accounts of Jesus are not reliable:
1.They were all written at least 40 years or more after the death of Jesus...why did the authors wait so long? Because the authors were not disciples of Jesus and instead were just anonymous Christians who compiled various myths and legends of Jesus into the Gospels, thats why.
2.the Gospels all read like a made up story, not like eyewitness accounts -how often to you read the Gospel authors saying: "Jesus told me this" or "Jesus told me that" or "I saw Jesus do this" or "I saw what happened to Jesus when that happened to him"? The Gospel authors describe events that they could not ever have known about. For example; the events pertaining to Mary and Joseph before Jesus was born and when he was young - how could the Gospel authors know about that,since the Disciples weren't chosen by Jesus until he was an adult? Or the conversation between Jesus and Satan when Jesus was out in the Dessert - how could the Disciples know about this? There are three potential answers, and all fail to support the Christian thesis of the Gospels being accurate and/or divinely inspred:
-Option 1-they were taught about these unobserved events by Jesus. But this makes no sense because everywhere else in the Bible, whenever somebody teaches things to another, it is specifically mentioned. Be it prophets who were taught something by Angels to the Gospels themselves specifically stating that Jesus taught something specifically to his disciples ("If they persecute you shake the dust from your feet"; "you will take no bag or anything else for your journey";etc.), the point is clear: when something is taught to a specific person or small group of people, it is explicitly said. Yet the Gospels make no mention of Jesus teaching the Disciples all of what happened to him that they were never personally witness to, and thats to be expected from the Gospels since they are
not eyewitness accounts.
-option 2-that God "inspired" the Gospel authors enough to supernaturally tell them the info that the were not witness to, but this is not a valid argument since you would have to also explain why God inspired the flaws in the Gospel (more on that in just a bit).
-Option 3 is by far the only rational explanation - The Gospel authors were merely making up stories about Jesus based largely on just their own imaginations. This is how they were able to describe events they were never witness to. If they made up events overall only because of their own desire to write a good story, then there is no reason to think of them them as harbingers of "God's Word", and in fact quite a lot of reason to think just the opposite.
3.The Gospels contradict each other. And not just insignificant little contradictions, either (as would be expected from an eyewitness account), but great discrepancies that no credible eyewitnesses would ever make. There are many contradictions, but here are a few of some of the most obvious ones:
----------------------------
-Who found the empty tomb?

a. According to Matthew 28:1, it was apparently only "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary."

b. According to John 20:1-4, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb alone, saw the stone removed, ran to find Peter, and returned to the tomb with Peter and another disciple.

-Who did they find at the tomb?

a. According to Matthew 28:2-4, an angel of the Lord with an appearance like lightning was sitting on the stone that had been rolled away. Also present were the guards that Pilate had contributed. On the way back from the tomb the women meet Jesus (Matthew 28:9).

b. According to Mark 16:5, a young man in a white robe was sitting inside the tomb.

c. According to Luke 24:4, two men in dazzling apparel. It is not clear if the men were inside the tomb or outside of it.

d. According to John 20:4-14, Mary and Peter and the other disciple initially find just an empty tomb. Peter and the other disciple enter the tomb and find only the wrappings. Then Peter and the other disciple leave and Mary looks in the tomb to find two angels in white. After a short conversation with the angels, Mary turns around to find Jesus.

-Who did the women tell about the empty tomb?

a. According to Mark 16:8, "they said nothing to anyone."

b. According to Matthew 28:8, they "ran to report it to His disciples."

c. According to John 20:18, Mary Magdalene announces to the disciples that she has seen the Lord.
----------------------------
These accounts are far, far too different from each other to be explained away by mere difference in personality of or minor events that happened to the "eyewitnesses". They go to the point of even forgetting events like earthquakes, the appearance of angels and remembering bringing other people to see the tomb! No eyewitness reports would ever be this incoherent unless all of the eyewitnesses were completely retarded, and bear in mind these contradictions are just scratching the surface, as there are quite a lot more.
4.The Gospels contradict earlier reports of Christianity, namely those of Paul, and also contradict independent evidence concerning the historical Jesus. First, we will deal with Paul:
Paul,in his talk of Jesus' "resurrection", says this:
1 Corinthians 15:3-9
'For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our
sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than 500 brethren at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.
Why is it that Paul never mentions Jesus being buried in a tomb? Why does he not mention Jesus appearing to the Roman guards? Why does he not mention Jesus appearing to the women who went to Jesus' tomb? Why does he not mention Jesus' ascension into Heaven in between him appearing to the apostles? A particularly interesting point is when Paul says; 'that he was buried' Paul uses the word 'etaphe'. This is just the normal word for burial. It is used in the Gospels in such phrases as 'Let the dead bury the dead', or 'The rich man died and was also buried' (Luke 16:23). There is no meaning of 'entombed' in the word Paul uses. There is a word for 'entombed', and it is used in the Gospels, but not by Paul.

-Romans 8:26 says that 'we do not know how to pray as we ought'. It seems that neither Paul, nor the entire Christian community in Rome, had heard of the Lord's Prayer. Why didn't Paul teach it to them?

-Matthew 26:19 says 'Therefore go and make disciples of all men, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.'. If Paul knew of this, why did he say 'For Christ did not send me to baptise'? (1 Corinthians 1:17).

-In Galatians 2:11-13, Paul describes how the early Christian Church leaders quarrelled with each other over the vital issue of whether or not to eat meals with Gentiles. Why did Paul never think of quoting Jesus's words about eating with sinners from Mark 2:16-17?

-In 1 Corinthians 15:50, Paul says outright that 'flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God'. How could he state more clearly that he did not consider the resurrected Jesus to have a physical body?

-In 1 Corinthians 6:2-3, Paul says 'Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!' Can Paul really have heard the teaching of Jesus from the Sermon on the mount 'Judge not, or you too will be judged'?

Paul's accounts of Christianity are far younger than those of the Gospels, yet Paul gives a very different version, indeed for most all practical intents and purposes; a contradiction, of the Gospels. The reason is clear: Paul didn't know of so many of the Gospels teachings because Jesus never taught them, and the stories had yet to be made up.

As far as independent evidence for the historicity of Jesus....

-Josephus mentions Jesus as "the so-called Christ" and as a worker of "great works" (miracles), but he never mentions any report of Jesus resurrecting, nor of the Earthquake or eclipse that supposedly happened after Jesus' death.
-Consider the Roman historian Tacitus, who said this about Jesus:
Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius. Tacitus then procedes to mention how Christianity spread, but he makes no mention of Jesus being reported as a miracle worker or of being raised from the dead. The latter point would have been exceptionally significant, yet isn't mentioned. I wonder why?
-Lucian was a Greek satirist who recorded quite a bit about "holy" men and religions of that time. Here is what he said about Jesus:
"... the man who was crucified in Palestine because he introduced this new cult into the world.... Furthermore, their first lawgiver persuaded them that they were all brothers one of another after they have transgressed once for all by denying the Greek gods and by worshipping that crucified sophist himself and living under his laws.
Again,no mention of Jesus' miracles, and certainly no mention of him being claimed to have raised from the dead.

Why did these authors think a thing like the mere existence of Jesus significant enough to be recorded, but his rising from the dead or being claimed to have risen from the dead, was not? Because the claim of Jesus' physical resurrection was not invented till decades after Jesus' death and even then was not greatly popular.

-----------------------

This is just the rudimentary form of my essay. There is still a lot of stuff I want to add and/or improve upon, yet even these few evidences show that the NT has fatal flaws in it. They are so wrought with flaws that it is dubious (at best) to believe that the Gospels are even an exceptionally great moral, spiritual guide. To suggest that they are a divine message to all of humanity sent by a perfect God, or that they are sufficient proof to establish the Resurrection as being even a rational possibility, would be too absurd to even warrant serious consideration. Christians can scoff at these and say "Oh, I have heard those [so called] ridiculous arguments before, they don't stand up to careful analysis," bla bla bla. I've seen them do this to many of the various different points I've mentioned here, but I have yet to see even one actually refute the point. They scoff, ignore, and label as irrelevant nonsense, all of these points. But they never adress them. I don't think its too difficult to figure out why.

[This message has been edited by Cute Little Baby (edited April 13, 2001).]
 
Old 04-13-2001, 04:18 AM   #2
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Smile

You obviously put a lot of thought into this. Have you been to Open Religion yet?

Maybe they could do with some help from you there. They love to discuss these sorts of things there.

(((clb)))

(I was thinking that cute little babies probably don't get enough hugs... )

take care
Helen
 
Old 04-13-2001, 06:13 AM   #3
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Talking

The LOL @ Cute Little Baby

CLB:I have explained these points again and again to Christians when speaking of the historicity of Jesus, but they just ignore them. However, I've proven beyond any rational doubt that:
There was nothing supernatural about Jesus, he is not part of some plan by God, he did not rise from the dead, and most important of all:
THE NEW TESTIMENT IS NOT A MESSAGE FROM GOD!

SWL: Ok, let's examine your proofs.

CLB: The following are reasons why all of the above statements are true - basically why the New Testiment accounts of Jesus are not reliable:
1.They were all written at least 40 years or more after the death of Jesus...why did the authors wait so long? Because the authors were not disciples of Jesus and instead were just anonymous Christians who compiled various myths and legends of Jesus into the Gospels, thats why.

SWL: Firstly, this is something that needs to be argued for, not just asserted. But more importantly, none of this disproves any of what you claimed to be able to disprove.

CLB: 2.the Gospels all read like a made up story, not like eyewitness accounts -how often to you read the Gospel authors saying: "Jesus told me this" or "Jesus told me that" or "I saw Jesus do this" or "I saw what happened to Jesus when that happened to him"?

SWL: This is irrelevant. Do we discount a modern biography because it isn't told in the first person? Of course not. This again does not disprove a thing.

CLB: The Gospel authors describe events that they could not ever have known about. For example; the events pertaining to Mary and Joseph before Jesus was born and when he was young - how could the Gospel authors know about that,since the Disciples weren't chosen by Jesus until he was an adult?

SWL: Hmmm...maybe by talking to a relative of Jesus' - perhaps Mary herself?

CLB: Or the conversation between Jesus and Satan when Jesus was out in the Dessert - how could the Disciples know about this?

SWL: Maybe by talking to Jesus?

CLB: There are three potential answers, and all fail to support the Christian thesis of the Gospels being accurate and/or divinely inspred:
-Option 1-they were taught about these unobserved events by Jesus. But this makes no sense because everywhere else in the Bible, whenever somebody teaches things to another, it is specifically mentioned.

SWL: Of course, no scholar (or sane person for that matter) thinks that every word Jesus spoke in teaching His disciples is recounted in the Gospels so this is irrelevant. In fact though, regarding the temptation, Jesus does speak of having seen Satan fall like lightening from heaven and several scholars interpret this and other sayings in the Gospels such as Mark 3:27 as referring to Jesus' temptation in the wilderness. See for instance Dale C. Allison, Jr. "Behind the Temptations of Jesus Q 4:1-13 and Mark 1:12-13" in B.D. Chilton and C.A. Evans (eds.), Authenticating the Activities of Jesus(NTTS, 28.2; Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1998)

C.J. Cadoux writes writes of Mark 3:27: "It is difficult to see what else this victory [referred to in Mark 3:27] could have been but his successful resistance to the Temptation that beset him in the wilderness shortly after his baptism."[C.J. Cadoux, The Historic Mission of Jesus (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1941) 66.]

CLB: Be it prophets who were taught something by Angels to the Gospels themselves specifically stating that Jesus taught something specifically to his disciples ("If they persecute you shake the dust from your feet"; "you will take no bag or anything else for your journey";etc.), the point is clear: when something is taught to a specific person or small group of people, it is explicitly said.

SWL: This is probably the most naive thing I've ever heard anyone say about the Gospel tradition. See the verse towards the end of John that, employing hyperbole to emphasize the incompleteness of the Gospel record, specifically says (to paraphrase) that the deeds of Jesus could not be recorded in all of the books in the world.

CLB: Yet the Gospels make no mention of Jesus teaching the Disciples all of what happened to him that they were never personally witness to, and thats to be expected from the Gospels since they are
not eyewitness accounts.

SWL: Actually, this doesn't really matter as there is no New Testament scholar in the multiverse who would argue that the Gospels do NOT contain eyewitness testimony about Jesus. Any authentic information we have about Jesus ultimately stems from eyewitnesses, and certainly all NT scholars believe that the NT documents contain reliable historical info. about Jesus (hence the billions of books on the 'historical Jesus'). For instance, William R. Farmer who actually thinks that later Christian prophets put words in the mouth of Jesus writes:

"The Gospels embody tradition concerning Jesus. Between Jesus and the Gospels stands the traditioning process, by which the Gospel stories and sayings of Jesus were handed on. These traditions were oral and written and included sayings both of Jesus and of early Christian prophets speaking in the name of Jesus. They also included accounts of eyewitnesses concerning the actions and character of Jesus and later modifications of this tradition made to meet the changing needs of different Christian communities."[Reflections Upon 'The Historical Perimeters for Understanding the Aims of Jesus" in B.D. Chilton and C.A. Evans (eds.), Authenticating the Activities of Jesus(NTTS, 28.2; Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1998), p. 64.]

CLB: -option 2-that God "inspired" the Gospel authors enough to supernaturally tell them the info that the were not witness to, but this is not a valid argument since you would have to also explain why God inspired the flaws in the Gospel (more on that in just a bit).

SWL: Hmmm...I don't think inspiration of certain aspects of the Bible necessarilly entails absolute inerrancy, but let's see what you come up with in the big bold flaws department.

CLB: -Option 3 is by far the only rational explanation - The Gospel authors were merely making up stories about Jesus based largely on just their own imaginations. This is how they were able to describe events they were never witness to. If they made up events overall only because of their own desire to write a good story, then there is no reason to think of them them as harbingers of "God's Word", and in fact quite a lot of reason to think just the opposite.

SWL: This obviously isn't the only rational explanation though, as we've seen.

CLB: 3.The Gospels contradict each other. And not just insignificant little contradictions, either (as would be expected from an eyewitness account), but great discrepancies that no credible eyewitnesses would ever make. There are many contradictions, but here are a few of some of the most obvious ones:

-Who found the empty tomb?

a. According to Matthew 28:1, it was apparently only "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary."

SWL: Does it say "only"? I didn't see that in there.

CLB: b. According to John 20:1-4, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb alone, saw the stone removed, ran to find Peter, and returned to the tomb with Peter and another disciple.

SWL: And?

CLB: -Who did they find at the tomb?

a. According to Matthew 28:2-4, an angel of the Lord with an appearance like lightning was sitting on the stone that had been rolled away. Also present were the guards that Pilate had contributed. On the way back from the tomb the women meet Jesus (Matthew 28:9).

b. According to Mark 16:5, a young man in a white robe was sitting inside the tomb.

c. According to Luke 24:4, two men in dazzling apparel. It is not clear if the men were inside the tomb or outside of it.

d. According to John 20:4-14, Mary and Peter and the other disciple initially find just an empty tomb. Peter and the other disciple enter the tomb and find only the wrappings. Then Peter and the other disciple leave and Mary looks in the tomb to find two angels in white. After a short conversation with the angels, Mary turns around to find Jesus.

SWL: Seems pretty consistent considering the possibility that these are independent traditions. Across the board, there were some angelic figures at the tomb. Who cares what positions they are reported to have been in? That's utterly trivial.

CLB: -Who did the women tell about the empty tomb?

a. According to Mark 16:8, "they said nothing to anyone."

SWL: Many scholars actually think the ending of Mark is missing (N.T. Wright, Robert Gundry, Ben Witherington, etc.) and that the original ending contained an appearance to the women as in Matthew. And plenty of other scholars interpret this silence as what Mark sees as an appropriate fearful response to the divine presence, that is only meant to be temporary, as the news that Jesus will be going into Galilee being recieved by the disciples is seemingly contingent upon the women telling them, and Mark certainly believes the men will indeed see Jesus in Galilee.

CLB: b. According to Matthew 28:8, they "ran to report it to His disciples."

SWL: Consistent with the temporary silence interp. of Mark or the missing ending.

CLB: c. According to John 20:18, Mary Magdalene announces to the disciples that she has seen the Lord.

SWL: I don't see anything that rules this out in the other Gospels.

CLB: ----------------------------
These accounts are far, far too different from each other to be explained away by mere difference in personality of or minor events that happened to the "eyewitnesses". They go to the point of even forgetting events like earthquakes, the appearance of angels and remembering bringing other people to see the tomb! No eyewitness reports would ever be this incoherent unless all of the eyewitnesses were completely retarded, and bear in mind these contradictions are just scratching the surface, as there are quite a lot more.

SWL: Unless of course the redactional tendencies of the authors of the Gospels accounts for the information being left out -like perhaps the men visiting the tomb being ommitted for the purpose of not arousing suspicion as to theft of the body, etc.

CLB: 4.The Gospels contradict earlier reports of Christianity, namely those of Paul, and also contradict independent evidence concerning the historical Jesus. First, we will deal with Paul:
Paul,in his talk of Jesus' "resurrection", says this:
1 Corinthians 15:3-9
'For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our
sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than 500 brethren at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.Why is it that Paul never mentions Jesus being buried in a tomb?

SWL: Er, probably because he has no reason to. He's just restating a short creedal formula - the emphasis being on the list of those to whom Jesus appeared. He's not writing a passion narrative. Besides, if the tomb-burial tradition is authentic, his audience would already know about it. Omission of a detail is not a contradiction.

CLB: Why does he not mention Jesus appearing to the Roman guards?

SWL: Because he's not giving an argument for the resurrection. He's talking to people who already believe in it. Besides, since he's associating resurrection appearances with apostolic authority, there's every reason not to mention the guards. And again, omission of a detail is not a contradiction.

CBL: Why does he not mention Jesus appearing to the women who went to Jesus' tomb?

SWL: Probably because of the theme of apostolic authority and the fact that women weren't really seen as particularly reliable witnesses at that time.

CLB: Why does he not mention Jesus' ascension into Heaven in between him appearing to the apostles?

SWL: Probably because that would draw unnecessary attention to the DIFFERENCE between his expereince of the risen Christ and their's. He does hint at a difference betw. them in the passage though when he says "as one untimely born" and some scholars interpret this as implicitly referring to a post-ascension appearance.

CLB: A particularly interesting point is when Paul says; 'that he was buried' Paul uses the word 'etaphe'. This is just the normal word for burial. It is used in the Gospels in such phrases as 'Let the dead bury the dead', or 'The rich man died and was also buried' (Luke 16:23). There is no meaning of 'entombed' in the word Paul uses. There is a word for 'entombed', and it is used in the Gospels, but not by Paul.

SWL: LOL, thanks for the references in the Gospels to the word being used of what is OBVIOUSLY a burial in a TOMB - especially in the case of a rich man. And anyway Acts 2:29 uses this word for burial of KING DAVID (!) who is said to have been buried in a "sepulchre". D'oh!

CLB: -Romans 8:26 says that 'we do not know how to pray as we ought'. It seems that neither Paul, nor the entire Christian community in Rome, had heard of the Lord's Prayer. Why didn't Paul teach it to them?

SWL: Read the passage again - the whole thing this time (reading the entire passage helps for consideration of context).

CLB: -Matthew 26:19 says 'Therefore go and make disciples of all men, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.'. If Paul knew of this, why did he say 'For Christ did not send me to baptise'? (1 Corinthians 1:17).

SWL: Paul wasn't being spoken to in Matthew 26:19.

CLB: -In Galatians 2:11-13, Paul describes how the early Christian Church leaders quarrelled with each other over the vital issue of whether or not to eat meals with Gentiles. Why did Paul never think of quoting Jesus's words about eating with sinners from Mark 2:16-17?

SWL: He may not have known them. As L.T. Johnson writes: ""Perhaps Paul did not have this memory of Jesus, which would not be surprising in the period of oral tradition during which Paul was writing his letters. It would be highly unlikely, in fact, for all of Jesus' sayings to be in the possession of every community or every teacher." (Living Jesus, p. 108)

BTW, strange occurences are not 'contradictions'.

CLB: -In 1 Corinthians 15:50, Paul says outright that 'flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God'. How could he state more clearly that he did not consider the resurrected Jesus to have a physical body?

SWL: Actually several scholars interpret 'flesh and blood' as a semetic idiom referring merely to corruptible human nature.

Craig writes: "Commentators are agreed that 'flesh and blood' is a typical Semitic expression denoting the frail human nature. It is found in Matt 16.17; Gal 1.16; Eph 6.12; Heb 2.14; see also Sir 14.18 and the references in Hermann L. Strack and Paul Billerbeck, eds., Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud and Midrasch (5th ed., 6 vols.; München: C. H. Beck, 1969), 1: 730-1, 753. The Semitic word pair...is first attested in Eccelesiasticus 14.18; 17.31 and occurs frequently in Rabbinic texts, especially Rabbinic parables. Elsewhere Paul also employs the expression 'flesh and blood' to mean simply 'people' or 'mortal creatures' (Gal 1.16; Eph 6.12). Therefore, Paul is not talking about anatomy here; rather he means that mortal human beings cannot enter into God's eternal kingdom: therefore, they must become imperishable (cf. v 53). This imperishability does not connote immateriality or unextendedness; on the contrary Paul's doctrine of the world to come is that our resurrection bodies will be part of, so to speak, a resurrected creation (Rom 8.18-23). The universe will be delivered from sin and decay, not materiality, and our bodies wil1 be part of that universe." [William L. Craig,"The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus," in Gospel Perspectives I, pp. 47-74. Edited by R.T. France and D. Wenham. Sheffield, England: JSOT Press, 1980.]

Similarly, Blomberg writes:

"…'flesh and blood' was a standard Semitic idiom for 'frail, mortal existence'; if Paul were denying the physical nature of the resurrection body he would more probably have used the common idiom 'flesh and bones'."[Craig L. Blomberg, "The Historical Reliability of the Gospels"(England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1987) p. 109]

And N.T. Wright:

"The present physicality in all its transience, its decay and its subjection to weakness, sickness, and death, is not to go on and on forever; that is what he means by saying 'flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.' For Paul 'flesh and blood' does not mean 'physicality' per se but the corruptible and decaying present state of our physicality. What is required is what we might call a 'noncorruptible physicality': the dead will be raised 'incorruptible' (v. 52), and we--that is, those who are left alive until the great day--will be changed."[N.T. Wright, "The Challenge of Jesus" (Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1999) p.143.]

See also Kistemaker's New Testament Commentary volume on 1 Corinthians in the discussion of this verse and the footnote on pp 580-1

But even IF Paul meant literal flesh and blood, we still wouldn't have a contradiction w/anything in the Gospels, as it was common in Judaism to concieve of angels, who's primary mode of existence is spiritual, as having manifested themselves physically.

CLB: In 1 Corinthians 6:2-3, Paul says 'Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!' Can Paul really have heard the teaching of Jesus from the Sermon on the mount 'Judge not, or you too will be judged'?

SWL: Jesus' words, taken in context, refer to judging people for things you yourself are guilty of.

CLB: Paul's accounts of Christianity are far younger than those of the Gospels, yet Paul gives a very different version, indeed for most all practical intents and purposes; a contradiction, of the Gospels.

SWL: Not at all.

CLB: The reason is clear: Paul didn't know of so many of the Gospels teachings because Jesus never taught them, and the stories had yet to be made up.

SWL: I don't see this as clear. In fact, I think Paul's readers were probably already somewhat familiar with the stories.

CLB: As far as independent evidence for the historicity of Jesus....

-Josephus mentions Jesus as "the so-called Christ" and as a worker of "great works" (miracles), but he never mentions any report of Jesus resurrecting, nor of the Earthquake or eclipse that supposedly happened after Jesus' death.
-Consider the Roman historian Tacitus, who said this about Jesus:
Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius. Tacitus then procedes to mention how Christianity spread, but he makes no mention of Jesus being reported as a miracle worker or of being raised from the dead. The latter point would have been exceptionally significant, yet isn't mentioned. I wonder why?

SWL: Keep wondering...But what does it mean? Nothing. By the time of Tacitus' report, obviously Christians were proclaiming that Jesus had performed miracles. That Tacitus doesn't report this is evidence then that Christians weren't saying this? Of course not.

CLB: -Lucian was a Greek satirist who recorded quite a bit about "holy" men and religions of that time. Here is what he said about Jesus:
"... the man who was crucified in Palestine because he introduced this new cult into the world.... Furthermore, their first lawgiver persuaded them that they were all brothers one of another after they have transgressed once for all by denying the Greek gods and by worshipping that crucified sophist himself and living under his laws.
Again,no mention of Jesus' miracles, and certainly no mention of him being claimed to have raised from the dead.

SWL: All rendered utterly insignificant by the fact that we know for a fact that Jesus' resurrection was proclaimed prior to this report.

CLB: Why did these authors think a thing like the mere existence of Jesus significant enough to be recorded, but his rising from the dead or being claimed to have risen from the dead, was not? Because the claim of Jesus' physical resurrection was not invented till decades after Jesus' death and even then was not greatly popular.

SWL: This is utter bunk, and it still doesn't explain why Jesus' resurrection is not mentioned by these historians. By the time of Lucian he wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a belief held from the very 3rd day after Jesus died and a belief invented 40 years later.

CLB: This is just the rudimentary form of my essay. There is still a lot of stuff I want to add and/or improve upon, yet even these few evidences show that the NT has fatal flaws in it. They are so wrought with flaws that it is dubious (at best) to believe that the Gospels are even an exceptionally great moral, spiritual guide. To suggest that they are a divine message to all of humanity sent by a perfect God, or that they are sufficient proof to establish the Resurrection as being even a rational possibility, would be too absurd to even warrant serious consideration. Christians can scoff at these and say "Oh, I have heard those [so called] ridiculous arguments before, they don't stand up to careful analysis," bla bla bla. I've seen them do this to many of the various different points I've mentioned here, but I have yet to see even one actually refute the point. They scoff, ignore, and label as irrelevant nonsense, all of these points. But they never adress them. I don't think its too difficult to figure out why.

SWL: Well, there's a first for everything.

You have failed to disprove any of the things you set out to disprove. Back to the drawing board...

SecWebLurker

 
Old 04-13-2001, 11:07 AM   #4
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

Hey CLB..

I guess you must be studying very hard, I mean you are working so hard that you have placed your brain on 'sleep mode'. You dont sound like a smart person. Take a break, you are working too hard.


Hey SecWebLurker...

nice to meet you, I have heard about you before. I read that post by someone, that your URL is the same as the one of a 'hacker' who has been around here... well, anyway, tlk to yal later!

God Bless!
Milton
 
Old 04-13-2001, 11:12 AM   #5
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Milton:
Hey CLB..

I guess you must be studying very hard, I mean you are working so hard that you have placed your brain on 'sleep mode'. You dont sound like a smart person. Take a break, you are working too hard.


Hey SecWebLurker...

nice to meet you, I have heard about you before. I read that post by someone, that your URL is the same as the one of a 'hacker' who has been around here... well, anyway, tlk to yal later!

God Bless!
Milton
</font>
Milton,

Why not deal with the points CLB made rather than make an insulting remark (You don't sound like a smart person)?

rodahi

 
Old 04-13-2001, 11:52 AM   #6
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Smile

Welcome Back SWL, good to see ya.
 
Old 04-13-2001, 05:22 PM   #7
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

Thanks for the welcome home, Layman.

Milton, I have no idea what that hacker stuff is all about. I'm definitely not a hacker though. I didn't even know what an IP number was when they said mine had been banned. And go a little easier on Cute Little Baby if you can...

SecWebLurker
 
Old 04-13-2001, 05:48 PM   #8
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

Cute Little Baby and SecWebLurker are both two sides of the same coin.
Both try to take the New Testament literally. Both ignore the ramifications of the parabolic picture of Jesus painted by the gospel writers.

Cute Little Baby says this shit never did, never could and--in this universe--never did happen.

SecWebLurker says this shit admittedly doesn't happen very often, but it did happen once--uniquely--in OUR religion and in our mediator of that religion: Jesus of Nazareth.

One of my points is the ancient people who wrote this stuff never argued about uniqueness. They lived in a world of virgin births for great men, demons on the prowl and a dome of heaven above and Sheol below.

Another of my points is that it is not the case that the ancients told dumb fairy tales and now we're so smart we can realize it. Actually, the ancients told powerful, metaphoric stories and we got dumb in the modern age and took them literally.

Both you guys have your minds made up about what kind of documents the gospels are before you ever open them. If we can stop pouring fantasy into the first century that wasn't there in the first place, we might be able to make a healthy transition into the 21st.
 
Old 04-13-2001, 06:21 PM   #9
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

Notice that I do not really argue anything akido attributes to me anywhere in this thread.

I'm sure he's very excited to tell us all about his 'true' interpretation of the Gospels, but unfortunately this thread is about claims that allegedly disprove certain Christian beliefs and my purpose here is to assess the validity of those claims.

If you want to have a discussion about the purpose and literary genre of the gospels, I suggest you start another thread, akido. Though it might help if you present some support for your position other than an implicit 'because I say so'.

SecWebLurker

 
Old 04-14-2001, 01:03 AM   #10
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Post

SecWebLurker,

When or if you respond to this, please don't include a quote from yourself when quoting my statements unless you feel such a thing is completely and totally necassary to maintain coherence. The reason I ask this is because, as I see in other threads, this "so and so said" "I said" "so and so then said" "I then said" so and so said" I then replied" "so and so said" "now I say" repeat ad naseum just gets hopelessly redundant and adds a tremendous amount of uncalled for incoherence. So, if your going to respond to me, please just quote what I said, and not what I was replying to.
Thanks.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Firstly, this is something that needs to be argued for, not just asserted.</font>
You appeal to authority, so will I: this is the consensus of most all of the Scholars. I am sure others here could explain the details better. But one thing I'd like to point out is that, since Paul's epistles can be dated with reasonable certainty to around 50 A.D., and since the Gospels contradict him via being much more fantastic accounts, and since it would take most likely at least two or three decades for such legends to spring up, you can be quite reasonable in concluding that the Synoptic Gospels were written decades after Paul. Do the math, it comes to 70 A.D. Rough aproximations of course, but you get the point.
The same form of reasoning goes for John.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">But more importantly, none of this disproves any of what you claimed to be able to disprove.</font>
In and of itself, no, of course not, and I never claimed so - thats why I included many other arguments in addition to this one. Obviously.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: This is irrelevant. Do we discount a modern biography because it isn't told in the first person? Of course not. This again does not disprove a thing.</font>
Alone, in and of itself, no, it proves nothing. But it was part of a larger argument/paragraph, which you just cut into.

Concerning wether or not the apostles describing things happening to Jesus before he chose some apostles was reasonably plausible,you said:
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Hmmm...maybe by talking to a relative of Jesus' - perhaps Mary herself?</font>
About the conversation between Jesus and Satan when Jesus was out in the Dessert and how disciples could know about it, you said:
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Maybe by talking to Jesus?</font>
CLB: There are three potential answers, and all fail to support the Christian thesis of the Gospels being accurate and/or divinely inspred:
-Option 1-they were taught about these unobserved events by Jesus. But this makes no sense because everywhere else in the Bible, whenever somebody teaches things to another, it is specifically mentioned.
Finally, you say:
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Of course, no scholar (or sane person for that matter) thinks that every word Jesus spoke in teaching His disciples is recounted in the Gospels so this is irrelevant. In fact though, regarding the temptation, Jesus does speak of having seen Satan fall like lightening from heaven and several scholars interpret this and other sayings in the Gospels such as Mark 3:27 as referring to Jesus' temptation in the wilderness. See for instance Dale C. Allison, Jr. "Behind the Temptations of Jesus Q 4:1-13 and Mark 1:12-13" in B.D. Chilton and C.A. Evans (eds.), Authenticating the Activities of Jesus(NTTS, 28.2; Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1998)

C.J. Cadoux writes writes of Mark 3:27: "It is difficult to see what else this victory [referred to in Mark 3:27] could have been but his successful resistance to the Temptation that beset him in the wilderness shortly after his baptism."[C.J. Cadoux, The Historic Mission of Jesus (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1941) 66.]</font>
I'm not going to unfairly cut into the middle of your theories before you even have a chance to explain them (like you do to mine), and will instead adress all these as a whole -
In the context of of the Bible it casts quite a lot of suspicion on them. From the book of Daniel to the Epistles to the book of Revelation; when events and teachings by a specific individual or small group of individuals (be it Jesus, angels, or whatever) are taught to a specific person and meant to me proclaimed to or embraced by others, it says so. Daniel specifically states he was taught his prophecies by angelic beings/God's inspiration. Paul makes it clear that Jesus appeared to him and wanted him to do this or that. The author of revelation pursues virtually identical verbal practices. Yet the Gospel authors make no mention of this. Its complicated to explain how they could even go around getting other sources from Jesus' contemporaries, yet not record any of it. This is completely contrary to the style of writing used by other Bible authors, multiple ones - Paul describes a number of places he went or people he talked to, and specifically says so. The same goes with the visions that the author of revelation had. Even OT authors--people who were removed Jesus' time by centuries--describe things seen or done by themselves as such i.e. "I went here" or "I did this". When God or an angel taught them something, they clearly said so. Perhaps not every single time but certainly in very sizeable portions of their teachings. Yet the Gospels have practically no resemblance at all to such writing styles. They never mention themselves seeing something or going someplace or talking to someone. They read like made up stories by people who were never witness to the events they describe, and the reason they read like that is most likely because they most likely are made up stories by people who were never witness to the events they describe. You can grasp at straws and argue otherwise, but, since your explanation is the unlikely one, the burden of proof is on you, not me.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: This is probably the most naive thing I've ever heard anyone say about the Gospel tradition. See the verse towards the end of John that, employing hyperbole to emphasize the incompleteness of the Gospel record, specifically says (to paraphrase) that the deeds of Jesus could not be recorded in all of the books in the world.</font>
Interesting that you "coincidentally" see this in John, the last of the Gospels.
Interesting also that you didn't adress why the context of the Gospels is not at all consistent with eyewitness Biblical reports.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Actually, this doesn't really matter as there is no New Testament scholar in the multiverse who would argue that the Gospels do NOT contain eyewitness testimony about Jesus. Any authentic information we have about Jesus ultimately stems from eyewitnesses, and certainly all NT scholars believe that the NT documents contain reliable historical info. about Jesus (hence the billions of books on the 'historical Jesus'). For instance, William R. Farmer who actually thinks that later Christian prophets put words in the mouth of Jesus writes:

"The Gospels embody tradition concerning Jesus. Between Jesus and the Gospels stands the traditioning process, by which the Gospel stories and sayings of Jesus were handed on. These traditions were oral and written and included sayings both of Jesus and of early Christian prophets speaking in the name of Jesus. They also included accounts of eyewitnesses concerning the actions and character of Jesus and later modifications of this tradition made to meet the changing needs of different Christian communities."[Reflections Upon 'The Historical Perimeters for Understanding the Aims of Jesus" in B.D. Chilton and C.A. Evans (eds.), Authenticating the Activities of Jesus(NTTS, 28.2; Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1998), p. 64.]</font>
"not eyewitness accounts" as in "not written by an eyewitness" is what I meant - I don't deny that the Gospel authors were fully aware of some people who claimed to have seen Jesus do this or that. That was the point of that particular argument of mine - that the Gospels were written by people who themselves were not personally eyewitness to Jesus' actions.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Hmmm...I don't think inspiration of certain aspects of the Bible necessarilly entails absolute inerrancy, but let's see what you come up with in the big bold flaws department.</font>
The New Testiment: Is it, or is it not, a message from a (presumably perfect) God, sent to all of humanity as a spiritual guide? If its not, the everything Christianity has been built upon for the past 2,000 years goes down faster than Michael Jackson in a boy's locker room, and all your attempts at rationalizing Christianity and protecting it from "unfair" critisizms are wasted. Christianity dies. Of course, for you to admit that the NT is erroneous is to admit its not some divine message to humanity from a perfect God, as it would be absurd to think such a being would write a flawed book.

In response to "Who found the empty tomb?", you said:
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: And?</font>
Thats the best you have? "And"? Hows this for an answer: And thus we conclude the details on who found the empty tomb are too incoherent to be taken seriously.
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Seems pretty consistent considering the possibility that these are independent traditions. Across the board, there were some angelic figures at the tomb. Who cares what positions they are reported to have been in? That's utterly trivial.</font>
Positions they were sitting are trivial. One was sitting up and the other standing vs. both sitting vs. both standing vs. both leaning against a wall? Such a thing would be no big deal...HOWEVER; claiming one came out of the sky, there was an earthquake, then he sat on the rolled away stone, vs. conveniently "forgetting" flying in the sky and an earthquake while describing a fellow inside the tomb instead of outside vs. the other source that has a good enough memory to record another angel being there, but still conveniently "Forgets" the angel flying and the earthquake, vs. entirely "forgetting" that the woman who went to the tomb and saw it was empty, ran back to tell two of the then-skeptical disciples who then went and investigated the tomb, were convinced by the lack of a body, and went away...well, a story such as that which is wrought with such great inconsistencies is not at all trustworthy.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Many scholars actually think the ending of Mark is missing (N.T. Wright, Robert Gundry, Ben Witherington, etc.) and that the original ending contained an appearance to the women as in Matthew. And plenty of other scholars interpret this silence as what Mark sees as an appropriate fearful response to the divine presence, that is only meant to be temporary, as the news that Jesus will be going into Galilee being recieved by the disciples is seemingly contingent upon the women telling them, and Mark certainly believes the men will indeed see Jesus in Galilee.</font>
So you admit that Mark was interpolated, yet consider it "divine" text?
Or, if not, then explain; how would Mark, a disciple who supposedly was describing events he remembered, somehow "forget" to mention the women preaching to people? They preached to the disciples, one of whom would have been Mark! Why would he "forget" describing the very events that instigated the resurrection story and were the only source for his info on what the women saw?
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">CLB: b. According to Matthew 28:8, they "ran to report it to His disciples."

SWL: Consistent with the temporary silence interp. of Mark or the missing ending.</font>
NOT consistent with the temporary silence theory since they did something after the silence, which Mark "forgets" to report, for some reason.
If its consistent with the missing ending of Mark, it just shows all the more how unlike a "divinely inspired" text it is.


Then you say:
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: I don't see anything that rules this out in the other Gospels.</font>
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Unless of course the redactional tendencies of the authors of the Gospels accounts for the information being left out -like perhaps the men visiting the tomb being ommitted for the purpose of not arousing suspicion as to theft of the body, etc.</font>
Then why did the other Gospel authors report something different? The Gospel stories are terribly inconsistent with each other, and as of yet, you've provided no explanation for this which stands up to careful scrutiny.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Er, probably because he has no reason to. He's just restating a short creedal formula - the emphasis being on the list of those to whom Jesus appeared. He's not writing a passion narrative. Besides, if the tomb-burial tradition is authentic, his audience would already know about it. Omission of a detail is not a contradiction.</font>
He makes NO MENTION of the tomb story. An empty tomb would indeed be a hell of a miracle, but he "forgets it"? Oh, and how could be appear to 500 brethren "at one time"? Did Christians really gather together in such all-male groups, such a short time after Christ's "resurrection", all for no apparent reason?

But with the tomb story and Paul's lack of description of the Roman Guards, we see why he didn't mention it...
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Because he's not giving an argument for the resurrection. He's talking to people who already believe in it. Besides, since he's associating resurrection appearances with apostolic authority, there's every reason not to mention the guards. And again, omission of a detail is not a contradiction.</font>
Huh? So he gives an account of the events that happened at the resurrection, but fails to mention the best source out of all of them - the skeptical Roman Guards? This is absurd.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Probably because that would draw unnecessary attention to the DIFFERENCE between his expereince of the risen Christ and their's. He does hint at a difference betw. them in the passage though when he says "as one untimely born" and some scholars interpret this as implicitly referring to a post-ascension appearance.</font>
Jesus going into heaven is one of the most important things in the Resurrection story. How does he "forget" such a thing while somehow managing to remember events like the appearing to the 500 or to Cephas, both of which were far less significant than the ascension?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: LOL, thanks for the references in the Gospels to the word being used of what is OBVIOUSLY a burial in a TOMB - especially in the case of a rich man. And anyway Acts 2:29 uses this word for burial of KING DAVID (!) who is said to have been buried in a "sepulchre". D'oh!</font>
Interesting. Without the Red Herring, would you care to explain why Paul fails to mention Jesus being buried in the tomb or use the word for "entombed"?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Read the passage again - the whole thing this time (reading the entire passage helps for consideration of context).</font>
I have. The point still remains: Paul was unfamiliar with the "Lord's Prayer" teaching.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Paul wasn't being spoken to in Matthew 26:19.</font>
This is lame. Paul was supposed to be an apostle of Jesus just like the rest of the Disciples, therefore; he should have been preaching the same message. Yet he was preaching something distinctly contrary to it.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: He may not have known them. As L.T. Johnson writes: ""Perhaps Paul did not have this memory of Jesus, which would not be surprising in the period of oral tradition during which Paul was writing his letters. It would be highly unlikely, in fact, for all of Jesus' sayings to be in the possession of every community or every teacher." (Living Jesus, p. 108)</font>
Paul didn't know about Jesus' teachings? And this is nothing more than repeating exactly my thesis on this, because, why, exactly?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Actually several scholars interpret 'flesh and blood' as a semetic idiom referring merely to corruptible human nature.

Craig writes: "Commentators are agreed that 'flesh and blood' is a typical Semitic expression denoting the frail human nature. It is found in Matt 16.17; Gal 1.16; Eph 6.12; Heb 2.14; see also Sir 14.18 and the references in Hermann L. Strack and Paul Billerbeck, eds., Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud and Midrasch (5th ed., 6 vols.; München: C. H. Beck, 1969), 1: 730-1, 753. The Semitic word pair...is first attested in Eccelesiasticus 14.18; 17.31 and occurs frequently in Rabbinic texts, especially Rabbinic parables. Elsewhere Paul also employs the expression 'flesh and blood' to mean simply 'people' or 'mortal creatures' (Gal 1.16; Eph 6.12). Therefore, Paul is not talking about anatomy here; rather he means that mortal human beings cannot enter into God's eternal kingdom: therefore, they must become imperishable (cf. v 53). This imperishability does not connote immateriality or unextendedness; on the contrary Paul's doctrine of the world to come is that our resurrection bodies will be part of, so to speak, a resurrected creation (Rom 8.18-23). The universe will be delivered from sin and decay, not materiality, and our bodies wil1 be part of that universe." [William L. Craig,"The Bodily Resurrection of Jesus," in Gospel Perspectives I, pp. 47-74. Edited by R.T. France and D. Wenham. Sheffield, England: JSOT Press, 1980.]

Similarly, Blomberg writes:

"…'flesh and blood' was a standard Semitic idiom for 'frail, mortal existence'; if Paul were denying the physical nature of the resurrection body he would more probably have used the common idiom 'flesh and bones'."[Craig L. Blomberg, "The Historical Reliability of the Gospels"(England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1987) p. 109]

And N.T. Wright:

"The present physicality in all its transience, its decay and its subjection to weakness, sickness, and death, is not to go on and on forever; that is what he means by saying 'flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.' For Paul 'flesh and blood' does not mean 'physicality' per se but the corruptible and decaying present state of our physicality. What is required is what we might call a 'noncorruptible physicality': the dead will be raised 'incorruptible' (v. 52), and we--that is, those who are left alive until the great day--will be changed."[N.T. Wright, "The Challenge of Jesus" (Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1999) p.143.]

See also Kistemaker's New Testament Commentary volume on 1 Corinthians in the discussion of this verse and the footnote on pp 580-1</font>
This might get you off the hook here, but it also eliminates any argument which seeks to establish that Paul was familiar with the story of the physical resurrection of Christ,since the latter can be interpreted as "spiritual" just as easily as the former.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">But even IF Paul meant literal flesh and blood, we still wouldn't have a contradiction w/anything in the Gospels, as it was common in Judaism to concieve of angels, who's primary mode of existence is spiritual, as having manifested themselves physically.</font>
Jesus was said to be in a physical body when he ascended into Heaven, not a spiritual one as an angel has.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Jesus' words, taken in context, refer to judging people for things you yourself are guilty of.</font>
He says that he and the people he was writing to will judge Angels, who are clearly superior to them ethically. Talk about arrogance and contradicting Jesus' teaching on judging!

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Keep wondering...But what does it mean? Nothing. By the time of Tacitus' report, obviously Christians were proclaiming that Jesus had performed miracles. That Tacitus doesn't report this is evidence then that Christians weren't saying this? Of course not.</font>
Miracles are hardly more important than Jesus being described as raised from the dead, especially when one discusses his cruxifiction.
Oh and BTW what about Josephus' lack of consistenty with the Gospel?
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: All rendered utterly insignificant by the fact that we know for a fact that Jesus' resurrection was proclaimed prior to this report.</font>
"utterly insignificant"? Don't overdo it - Jesus being claimed to have raised from the dead is hardly the same as being unbiquitously claimed so by all major factions of Christianity in existence at the time. The latter is what would be expected if he really did raise from the dead. If he didn't, and those claiming that he did were just the faction that eventuall won after centuries of dispute between different versions of Christianity, then not mentioning the Resurrection story would be not be such a big deal. Which one best matches up with the evidence?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: This is utter bunk, and it still doesn't explain why Jesus' resurrection is not mentioned by these historians. By the time of Lucian he wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a belief held from the very 3rd day after Jesus died and a belief invented 40 years later.</font>
Its a legitimate theory - if he rose from the dead, belief in such would be as common as believing his name was Jesus Christ and he was cruxified. But if he did not raise from the dead...well, I've explained that already.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">SWL: Well, there's a first for everything.

You have failed to disprove any of the things you set out to disprove. Back to the drawing board...</font>
Oh please. I provided a very persuasive initial argument, and most of your critisizms were largely or wholely baseless from a rational perspective.
 
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:42 PM.

Top

This custom BB emulates vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.