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Old 04-14-2001, 07:29 PM   #21
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Rodahi,
This is how J.P. Meier characterizes the status of the study of source criticism and the Gospel of John:


quote:
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Early in this century it was largely taken for granted that John knew and used the Synoptic Gospels. P. Gardner-Smith challenged that view in 1938, claiming that John represented an independent tradition. This position was worked out in detail by C.H. Dodd and was accepted by such major commentators as Raymond Brown, Rudolf Schnackenburg, and Ernst Haenchen. It is probably the majority opinion today, but by no means the unanimous one....


It should be noted that Michael Grant writes as a historian, not as a theologian. Some might ask, "So what?" Here is "what." Christian theologians have a vested interest in New Testament history, Grant and other critical historians do not. Grant states, "There are many who maintain that no one except a believer in Jesus' divinity is entitled to write a single word about him. W. G. Kummel and Vincent Taylor expressed this view in uncompromising terms...the opinion that only believing Christians are entitled to study New Testament history cannot win any historian's acceptance. Unacceptable, too, is the insistence of C. H. Dodd and J. M. Robinson that the burden of proof has passed from the believer to the historian: that greater weight is required to discredit a Gospel statement than to authenticate it." Jesus, pp. 198-199. Grant goes on to point out that even Origen admitted that some passages in the narratives were not literal history and that they were "both absurd and impossible." Ibid, P. 199.

This explains perfectly well why some Christian scholars believe "multiple attestation" gives them confidence and why Grant does not share that confidence.

rodahi
 
Old 04-14-2001, 07:38 PM   #22
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Originally posted by rodahi:
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Layman:
[b]Rodahi: I have read Grant's Jesus. To be quite frank, I am not sure why you think he "seemingly [has a] limited understanding of source criticism." Pick a chapter from the book and give a specific example of how his understanding of the historical Jesus significantly differs from that of E. P. Sanders, Bart Ehrman, John P. Meier, John Dominic Crossan, or Helmut Koester.
Layman: Actually, my premeire disagreement with Grant is his devaluation of the criteria of multiple attestation.

Okay. You and a few Christian scholars disagree with the criteria Michael Grant uses in his book Jesus. I am not sure how that makes anyone right or anyone wrong. As you know, multiple attestation does not prove anything. It merely makes some individuals more confident in asserting that such and such event happened in the past.

rodahi



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Layman: A "few?"

I think you named a few.

Layman: And I don't think that the "Jesus Seminar" qualifies as "Christian scholars," although some of them may be Christians. Ditto for E.P. Sanders.

Okay. Specifically, what conclusions about the historical Jesus did Grant reach that are at odds with those of Sanders or members of the Jesus Seminar?

Layman: I'd be curious if you know of any New Testament scholars who flatly reject the criteria of multiple attestation.

I have not indicated that any historian "flatly rejects" anything. I have only stated that Michael Grant disagrees with the some of the scholars you mentioned with respect to the "value" of multiple attestation.

rodahi

 
Old 04-14-2001, 07:40 PM   #23
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What does that have to do with multiple attestation? Do you have any evidence that the acceptance of "multiple attestation" breaks down upon believer/nonbeliever lines?

And are you talking about Christian scholars like the Jesus Seminar and E.P. Sanders?


 
Old 04-14-2001, 07:44 PM   #24
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"I think you named a few."

Unfortunate time, resource, and space constraints.

"Okay. Specifically, what conclusions about the historical Jesus did Grant reach that are at odds with those of Sanders or members of the Jesus Seminar?"

The difference I was concerned with is with methodology. E.P. Sanders and the Jesus Seminar employ the criteria of mulitple attestation, Grant rejects it. I think his rejection of it is caused, at least in part by, his misunderstanding of New Testament source criticism.

But, speaking in general terms, M. Grant is much closer to E.P. Sanders than he is to the Jesus Seminar. In fact, he and Sanders agree with each other much more than Sanders and the Seminar agree with each other.

Grant and Sanders seem to portray a Jesus concerned with the coming Kingdom and employ apocalyptic language and theology. Jesus' focus on moral teaching and social justice are given a backseat.

The Seminar, on the other hand, downplays Jesus apocalyptic focus and emphasize his moral teaching and social justice.



[This message has been edited by Layman (edited April 14, 2001).]
 
Old 04-14-2001, 07:48 PM   #25
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by turtonm:

Asshole.


Speaking as a moderator, comments like this one by Zoroaster are way out of line.
</font>
Why? Because of the vulgar word, or because I am calling the A-hole in question an A-hole?

It seems to me that you guys let the theists on this board get away with way too much. This layman is just a total moron and a prick. He makes these totally ridiculous statements like that skeptics don't read history books, and he is treated with kid gloves.

Why do you think he deserves anything more than to be told he is an asshole, and dismissed for the moron he is?

Maybe for the lurkers we can then go on to post why his arguments are bursting at the seams with shit-o-la, but to let this shithead make the ludicrous claims just seems ridiculous to me.

 
Old 04-14-2001, 07:51 PM   #26
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[quote]<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Zoroaster:
Quote:
Originally posted by turtonm:

Asshole.


Speaking as a moderator, comments like this one by Zoroaster are way out of line.
</font>
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"> Why? Because of the vulgar word, or because I am calling the A-hole in question an A-hole?

It seems to me that you guys let the theists on this board get away with way too much. This layman is just a total moron and a prick. He makes these totally ridiculous statements like that skeptics don't read history books, and he is treated with kid gloves.

Why do you think he deserves anything more than to be told he is an asshole, and dismissed for the moron he is?

Maybe for the lurkers we can then go on to post why his arguments are bursting at the seams with shit-o-la, but to let this shithead make the ludicrous claims just seems ridiculous to me.
Quote:
</font>
I retracted the statement and apologized. It was overbroad and unfounded.

Do you have any response to my substantive comments?

Or, let me rephrase. Do you have any substantive response to my substantive comments?

[This message has been edited by Layman (edited April 14, 2001).]

[This message has been edited by Layman (edited April 14, 2001).]
 
Old 04-14-2001, 08:05 PM   #27
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Layman:
What does that have to do with multiple attestation? Do you have any evidence that the acceptance of "multiple attestation" breaks down upon believer/nonbeliever lines?

And are you talking about Christian scholars like the Jesus Seminar and E.P. Sanders?

</font>
I have asked you before to quote me and then respond to the quote. When you post something like this, I am not sure which statement of mine you are responding to.

I will try to answer your questions. Multiple attestation does not prove anything. It gives SOME individuals confidence in asserting that such and such event took place.

Attestation should be used with common sense. For example, if fifty people attested that a herd of African elephants, flapping their ears and passing gas, flew over their neighborhood at two thousand feet, I would not believe them. If two people attested to a rainstorm on a spring day, I would believe them. If fifty ancient historians wrote that a herd of African elephants were said to have flown over Alexandria at two thousand feet and that they dropped a ton of elephant hockey while flying over, I would not believe them. If two ancient historians stated that they got caught in the rain and had to wait it out, I would believe them.

rodahi

 
Old 04-14-2001, 08:06 PM   #28
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Originally posted by Zoroaster:

Asshole.


Turtonm: Speaking as a moderator, comments like this one by Zoroaster are way out of line.

Why? Because of the vulgar word, or because I am calling the A-hole in question an A-hole?

It seems to me that you guys let the theists on this board get away with way too much. This layman is just a total moron and a prick. He makes these totally ridiculous statements like that skeptics don't read history books, and he is treated with kid gloves.

Why do you think he deserves anything more than to be told he is an asshole, and dismissed for the moron he is?

Maybe for the lurkers we can then go on to post why his arguments are bursting at the seams with shit-o-la, but to let this shithead make the ludicrous claims just seems ridiculous to me.


Layman is not an asshole or a shithead. Wrong, yes, asshole, no. His sweeping statement was ridiculous on its face and required no apology; a gently sarcastic rebuttal was more than enough. He was just being silly for a moment, we all do it. Normally Layman operates in a restrained and careful manner.

Once people start responding with "asshole" the whole thread tends to break down into either insults or apologies, and nothing gets going. Just hop on over to any thread with Metacrock and watch the fur fly. Many of the regulars won't even talk to him anymore. This illustrates the second problem, that insults on one thread tend to spill over into another, and another, and require posts with lists of insults, and counterposts, until at last large blocs of the SecWeb aren't talking to each other, and the moderators are shutting down more conversations than the Chinese internet secret police.

Why did I go after you?

1) You're the atheist (AFAIK) and I am holding YOU to a higher standard. Further, Layman is a guest in our house. Let's treat him like one.

2) The fight begins when the second person responds. NFL rules: punish the guy who hits back. You should have just laughed and said "that's ridiculous." Instead you escalated. Being called an a$$hole is a heckuva a lot more serious than being told one doesn't read history books.

3) When someone is a putative moron, the simplest thing to do is DEMONSTRATE what a moron they are. Heck, that's more fun anyway.

In anycase, since we've had apologies all around, let's move on. I do sincerely apologize if you felt I was being unfair, but as you can see, I have my reasons.

Michael

[This message has been edited by turtonm (edited April 14, 2001).]
 
Old 04-14-2001, 08:18 PM   #29
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Layman:
"I think you named a few."

Unfortunate time, resource, and space constraints.

"Okay. Specifically, what conclusions about the historical Jesus did Grant reach that are at odds with those of Sanders or members of the Jesus Seminar?"

The difference I was concerned with is with methodology. E.P. Sanders and the Jesus Seminar employ the criteria of mulitple attestation, Grant rejects it. I think his rejection of it is caused, at least in part by, his misunderstanding of New Testament source criticism.

But, speaking in general terms, M. Grant is much closer to E.P. Sanders than he is to the Jesus Seminar. In fact, he and Sanders agree with each other much more than Sanders and the Seminar agree with each other.

Grant and Sanders seem to portray a Jesus concerned with the coming Kingdom and employ apocalyptic language and theology. Jesus' focus on moral teaching and social justice are given a backseat.

The Seminar, on the other hand, downplays Jesus apocalyptic focus and emphasize his moral teaching and social justice.

[This message has been edited by Layman (edited April 14, 2001).]
</font>
Okay. You and I agree on something: Grant, Sanders, Ehrman, et al. think that Jesus' message was primarily apocalyptic. Members of the Jesus Seminar think that Jesus was primarily a wandering cynic. All agree that Jesus was a charismatic human being.

rodahi
 
Old 04-14-2001, 08:21 PM   #30
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by turtonm:
Originally posted by Zoroaster:

Asshole.


Turtonm: Speaking as a moderator, comments like this one by Zoroaster are way out of line.

Why? Because of the vulgar word, or because I am calling the A-hole in question an A-hole?

It seems to me that you guys let the theists on this board get away with way too much. This layman is just a total moron and a prick. He makes these totally ridiculous statements like that skeptics don't read history books, and he is treated with kid gloves.

Why do you think he deserves anything more than to be told he is an asshole, and dismissed for the moron he is?

Maybe for the lurkers we can then go on to post why his arguments are bursting at the seams with shit-o-la, but to let this shithead make the ludicrous claims just seems ridiculous to me.


Layman is not an asshole or a shithead. Wrong, yes, asshole, no. His sweeping statement was ridiculous on its face and required no apology; a gently sarcastic rebuttal was more than enough. He was just being silly for a moment, we all do it. Normally Layman operates in a restrained and careful manner.

Once people start responding with "asshole" the whole thread tends to break down into either insults or apologies, and nothing gets going. Just hop on over to any thread with Metacrock and watch the fur fly. Many of the regulars won't even talk to him anymore. This illustrates the second problem, that insults on one thread tend to spill over into another, and another, and require posts with lists of insults, and counterposts, until at last large blocs of the SecWeb aren't talking to each other, and the moderators are shutting down more conversations than the Chinese internet secret police.

Why did I go after you?

1) You're the atheist (AFAIK) and I am holding YOU to a higher standard. Further, Layman is a guest in our house. Let's treat him like one.

2) The fight begins when the second person responds. NFL rules: punish the guy who hits back. You should have just laughed and said "that's ridiculous." Instead you escalated. Being called an a$$hole is a heckuva a lot more serious than being told one doesn't read history books.

3) When someone is a putative moron, the simplest thing to do is DEMONSTRATE what a moron they are. Heck, that's more fun anyway.

In anycase, since we've had apologies all around, let's move on. I do sincerely apologize if you felt I was being unfair, but as you can see, I have my reasons.

Michael

[This message has been edited by turtonm (edited April 14, 2001).]
</font>
Well done, Michael.

Ron

 
 

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