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Old 12-22-2000, 03:29 PM   #1
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Post Refutation of Nomad

On another thread, Pompous Bastard has engaged Nomad in a discussion concerning Nomad's views regarding, among other things, the following passage:

Matthew 27
27:45
From noon on, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon.
27:46
And about three o'clock Jesus cried with a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" that is, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
27:47
When some of the bystanders heard it, they said, "This man is calling for Elijah."
27:48
At once one of them ran and got a sponge, filled it with sour wine, put it on a stick, and gave it to him to drink.
27:49
But the others said, "Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him."
27:50
Then Jesus cried again with a loud voice and breathed his last.
27:51
At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, and the rocks were split.
27:52
The tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised.
27:53
After his resurrection they came out of the tombs and entered the holy city and appeared to many.

27:54
Now when the centurion and those with him, who were keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were terrified and said, "Truly this man was God's Son!"
27:55
Many women were also there, looking on from a distance; they had followed Jesus from Galilee and had provided for him.
27:56
Among them were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of the sons of Zebedee. (NRSV)

At one point in their dialogue, PB stated, "...we simply cannot accept that there were dead people walking around Jerusalem and no one bothered to comment except Matthew, we would have to read this figuratively to salvage Christianity."

Nomad's response: “Matthew tells us that he is drawing his testimony from witnesses that were there (even going so far as to name some of them). No need to read this as metaphor PB."


I am not sure where Nomad got this idea. Let's look at the facts:

The anonymous writer [Matthew] does not say from whom or where he got his information; however, scholarly opinion, with rare exception, holds that the writer copied, almost verbatim, the above passage from the narrative of another anonymous writer. (The more original writer is simply known as “Mark.”) If “Matthew” did copy another’s work, he would have had no need of witnesses or their testimony. The people NAMED in “Mark” are those NAMED in “Matthew.“ However, in “Mark,“ the people who stood at a distance from the execution witnessed nothing but the execution. (It would have been impossible for those close enough to see the execution to have seen the curtain tear; also, there could not have been a solar eclipse at the time of the execution.) For, “Mark“ knows of no earthquake or resurrection. It is inconceivable that he would have not reported them, if they had actually happened. “Matthew” simply added an earthquake and resurrection of saints, complete with additional witnesses, to the more original work. With respect to the above passage, “Matthew” does say that the unnamed centurion and others with him saw the earthquake and what took place. But only he knows of the “others.” “Mark” makes no mention of them, nor does anyone else. Furthermore, those persons who are NAMED in 27:56 are not the same as those mentioned with the centurion, for the writer states, "Many women were ALSO there," and they were "looking on from a distance." No one knows what they saw. (Another anonymous writer,"John", contradicts "Matthew" and "Mark," so what should the reader believe?)

Even if we were to take “Matthew” at face value, there are other insurmountable problems: How could anyone at the scene of the execution have been a witness to the resurrection of dead bodies (as Nomad states)? Were all the saints buried close to where criminals were executed? Where did they go after they were seen in Jerusalem? If it was physically possible for corpses to come back to life back then, why don’t they come back to life, at least on occasion, now?

There are other problematic facts that relate to the above passage. Not only is the writer anonymous, but the passage itself is not attested to in any extant MS until the fourth century. This is all the more amazing when we consider that literally hundreds of non-Christian MSS can be dated to the first and second century. (Ironically, without the non-Christian writings, it would be virtually impossible to determine when the Christian writings were produced. For, the non-Christian MSS are sometimes dated, the Christian ones are not. Experts compare the style of writing from dated MSS to those which are not dated and determine, approximately, when the undated MSS were produced.) If the ancient Egyptians (among others) could preserve their original religious literature for several thousands of years (see the Pyramid Texts), why couldn't the early Christians preserve just one original of any work from the NT? The fact is, every surviving MS is a copy of a copy, etc. All scholars admit that no two copies of any work are identical.

So, what does all this mean?
Nomad has no problem believing fourth century MSS containing the words of an anonymous writer (who copied another anonymous writer) who told of events (earthquake and resurrection of many) that no one else knows of. The MSS that Nomad trusts contain numerous omissions, additions, and errors.

All things considered, Why would anyone consider these MSS good evidence? Does blind faith have anything to do with it?

 
Old 12-23-2000, 07:51 AM   #2
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I think Matthew is the least reliable of the Gospels, from what I've read it contains errors of Jewish law & custom (so the writer was not a Jew, therefore not an original disciple, He has Jesus riding into town on 2 donkeys, because he misread an OT prophecy about the Messiah, & doesn't he also have Herod killing a bunch of babies? Something no one else in the world seems to know about.
 
Old 12-25-2000, 12:17 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by marduck:
I think Matthew is the least reliable of the Gospels, from what I've read it contains errors of Jewish law & custom (so the writer was not a Jew, therefore not an original disciple, He has Jesus riding into town on 2 donkeys, because he misread an OT prophecy about the Messiah, & doesn't he also have Herod killing a bunch of babies? Something no one else in the world seems to know about.

Meta=> NO it doesn't. The slaughter of the innocents by Heriod is archaeologically proven. See the book Archeology of The New Testament By R.K. Harrison 1964

 
Old 12-25-2000, 02:57 AM   #4
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[Marduck about Matthew:]
...doesn't he also have Herod killing a bunch of babies? Something no one else in the world seems to know about.

Meta=> NO it doesn't. The slaughter of the innocents by Heriod is archaeologically proven. See the book Archeology of The New Testament By R.K. Harrison 1964

And what is this "proof"? Is there some tablet in which King Herod had stated that he had to order the killing of every baby boy in his kingdom in order to keep some supposed messiah from living?

This mass murder of baby boys is *only* "documented" in the Gospel of Matthew; it is mentioned nowhere else in the New Testament, not to mention outside historians like Josephus, whose discussion of King Herod was far from flattering.
 
Old 12-25-2000, 04:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Metacrock:

Meta=> NO it doesn't. The slaughter of the innocents by Heriod is archaeologically proven. See the book Archeology of The New Testament By R.K. Harrison 1964
Meta, you are hopeless!!

By the way, as Thomas Paine has pointed out, if all the first born where killed this would have included John the Baptist!

Occ.

 
Old 12-29-2000, 10:44 AM   #6
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Hmm... it's getting so a guy can't even take a holiday.

Oh well, it's good to be back.

(And for those interested, the thread in question is called Standards of Bibilical Interpretation, and seems to have come to an ignominius end, quite sadly in my view.)

Quote:
Originally posted by penatis:

At one point in their dialogue, PB stated, "...we simply cannot accept that there were dead people walking around Jerusalem and no one bothered to comment except Matthew, we would have to read this figuratively to salvage Christianity."

Nomad's response: “Matthew tells us that he is drawing his testimony from witnesses that were there (even going so far as to name some of them). No need to read this as metaphor PB."

I am not sure where Nomad got this idea. Let's look at the facts:

The anonymous writer [Matthew] does not say from whom or where he got his information; however, scholarly opinion, with rare exception, holds that the writer copied, almost verbatim, the above passage from the narrative of another anonymous writer. (The more original writer is simply known as “Mark.”) If “Matthew” did copy another’s work, he would have had no need of witnesses or their testimony. The people NAMED in “Mark” are those NAMED in “Matthew.“
Okay, lots of points are being raised here, and generally I am not crazy about this kind of writing since it tends to lead to a lot of muddled thinking. Personally, I would prefer that we adressed the key concerns one at a time, so let's see if we can do that.

First, did Matthew use other sources in creating his Gospel as penatis claims? Well, yes, it is generally agreed that he did do this, and that Mark (or Mark's source) was one of those prior sources. Did he copy everything verbatum? Of course not. If he had, then we would hardly need GMatthew at all since GMark would already say all that needed to be said. So I think we should drop the simplistic notion that Matthew was simply relying exclusively on Mark for his claims.

Second, who were Mark's witnesses, and who were Matthew's? This is not an easy question to address since we do not have direct statements that "Mary M said this..." and "Suzy Q said that..." On the other hand, we do have a number of identifiable individuals listed in each of the Gospels, and it is a pretty safe bet that at least some of these witnesses were still alive at the time the Gospels were written. We also know that people who knew and met these witnesses were still alive. Finally, we have Paul attesting to many of the same events in his own letters (i.e. the birth of Jesus to the House of David, His death on the cross, His burial and the physical ressurection of His body). I have been through these discussions often enough now that I don't really want to have to rehash all the material yet again. But let's just say that the line bought by the sceptics is a pretty flimsy one, and it fails miserably when forced to stand up to close scrutiny.

Third, it is certain that both Mark and Matthew (and the other Gospels) were written for living breathing communities of believers. The fact that these four accounts agree on every single important detail is astonishing to the point of being unprecedented. I would challenge people to produce modern biographies on anyone dead more than a hundred years that has done as well in its consistancy. These communities would have, and did, serve as a serious check on mythological developement in the materials and stories being offered to them by the Gospel writers. In fact, the severity of this check is so complete as to insure that since the Canonical Books have been accepted by Christians (basically dating back to the 2nd Century, and formally in the early 4th Century), NO deviations or significant additions or changes have been permitted. Bottom line, this means that the story of Jesus' life, death and resurrection was COMPLETED and written down on paper within the lifetime of many of the people who were His contemporaries. How often did this happen in the ancient world? Well, basically never. So again we have an extraordinary set of books and letters written by Christ's followers even before many of them died. I never cease to be amazed about how blaze the sceptics are about this astounding fact, but I never claimed to understand the mind of the sceptic. Near as I can tell, the sceptic's main hope is to keep rationalizing every piece of evidence presented to him until he no longer needs to give it much thought. Such is the nature of faith I suppose.

Quote:
However, in “Mark,“ the people who stood at a distance from the execution witnessed nothing but the execution.
Goy, this is one of the worst statements made in this post. The women that witnessed the execution also participated in the burial, and were there when the tomb was found empty.

Quote:
(It would have been impossible for those close enough to see the execution to have seen the curtain tear; also, there could not have been a solar eclipse at the time of the execution.)
Point one, so what? Who said that the women at the cross were the only witnesses? And if you want to claim that Mark and Matthew were making up the bit about the curtain being torn, no doubt you have a document from the period in question backing you up I hope. Or are you making yet another argument from silence?

On point 2, I already showed in the other thread that it was a lunar eclipse, not a solar eclipse that took place on the day Jesus died.

Quote:
For, “Mark“ knows of no earthquake or resurrection.
So? Jesus never used His name in ANY of the Gospels. Does that mean He didn't know what it was? See why arguments from silence are so lame?

Quote:
It is inconceivable that he would have not reported them, if they had actually happened.
And you KNOW this because...?

Quote:
“Matthew” simply added an earthquake and resurrection of saints, complete with additional witnesses, to the more original work.
And pentatis offers ZERO evidence to support this claim outside of arguments from silence. Please do better than this.

Quote:
With respect to the above passage, “Matthew” does say that the unnamed centurion and others with him saw the earthquake and what took place. But only he knows of the “others.” “Mark” makes no mention of them, nor does anyone else.
So?

Quote:
Furthermore, those persons who are NAMED in 27:56 are not the same as those mentioned with the centurion, for the writer states, "Many women were ALSO there," and they were "looking on from a distance."
So?

Quote:
No one knows what they saw. (Another anonymous writer,"John", contradicts "Matthew" and "Mark," so what should the reader believe?)
Please penatis. I am too busy to be dealing with these kinds of silly claims without supports. Do better.

Quote:
Even if we were to take “Matthew” at face value, there are other insurmountable problems: How could anyone at the scene of the execution have been a witness to the resurrection of dead bodies (as Nomad states)?
Umm... why should they witness a resurrection? What if they simply meet the individuals later? And who said the women at the cross were the only witnesses? I do think you mentioned that there were others.

Quote:
Were all the saints buried close to where criminals were executed? Where did they go after they were seen in Jerusalem?
Who knows? Matthew never tells us. Maybe they went bowling.

Quote:
If it was physically possible for corpses to come back to life back then, why don’t they come back to life, at least on occasion, now?
Ummm... huh? Is this an argument of some sort?

Quote:
There are other problematic facts that relate to the above passage. Not only is the writer anonymous, but the passage itself is not attested to in any extant MS until the fourth century.
So?

Quote:
This is all the more amazing when we consider that literally hundreds of non-Christian MSS can be dated to the first and second century.
Check again penatis. There are virtually no surviving original ancient texts from the first century that are not Christian (the Dead Sea Scrolls being a very notable exception). In fact, most sceptics spend their time telling me that this is because Christians destroyed it all in some kind of grand scroll burning conspiracy. On the other hand, maybe papyrus just doesn't hold up very well unless extraordinary measures are taken to preserve them, and the ancients preferred to copy things rather than keep the originals. That does seem to be the more reasonable and simpler explanation don't you think?

Quote:
(Ironically, without the non-Christian writings, it would be virtually impossible to determine when the Christian writings were produced. For, the non-Christian MSS are sometimes dated, the Christian ones are not.
Just out of curiosity, where do you get these curious beliefs? The reason we know the dates on the Christian documents is the same way we know the dates on most ancient documents. The copiest tells us.

Quote:
Experts compare the style of writing from dated MSS to those which are not dated and determine, approximately, when the undated MSS were produced.)
Not always. Please offer some sources for your beliefs. Very often the copyist made sure to include the date of the text he was copying, and thus we can see how old it was. Carbon dating comes into play sometimes as well.

Quote:
If the ancient Egyptians (among others) could preserve their original religious literature for several thousands of years (see the Pyramid Texts),
You mean the stuff written on stone?

Quote:
why couldn't the early Christians preserve just one original of any work from the NT?
You mean the stuff written on papyrus? Maybe you have a suggestion on how they could have done this? Or even why they should have done this.

Quote:
The fact is, every surviving MS is a copy of a copy, etc. All scholars admit that no two copies of any work are identical.
So?

Quote:
So, what does all this mean?
Apparently not much.

Quote:
Nomad has no problem believing fourth century MSS containing the words of an anonymous writer (who copied another anonymous writer) who told of events (earthquake and resurrection of many) that no one else knows of.
Hmm... and you think I am relying on 4th Century MSS because?

Quote:
The MSS that Nomad trusts contain numerous omissions, additions, and errors.
So? Tell me one that is important please.

Quote:
All things considered, Why would anyone consider these MSS good evidence? Does blind faith have anything to do with it?
Nope. It is called textual criticism, and anyone that wants to claim that we do not have an embarrassingly HUGE amoung of MSS to work from with the NT does not know what he is talking about. Show us your scholars please penatis, and tell us verbatum what they have to say.

Nomad

[This message has been edited by Nomad (edited December 29, 2000).]
 
Old 12-29-2000, 10:53 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Occupation:
Meta, you are hopeless!!

By the way, as Thomas Paine has pointed out, if all the first born where killed this would have included John the Baptist!

LOL!!!!

I tell ya, I come here for the laughs sometimes. Occupation, tell me, was John the Baptist born in Bethlehem? Was he living there when he was two?

Let me offer you a suggestion. Don't mention Thomas Paine in a serious discussion about the Bible. You will embarrass yourself a great deal.

Nomad
 
Old 12-31-2000, 01:52 PM   #8
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Originally posted by penatis:
At one point in their dialogue, PB stated, "...we simply cannot accept that there were dead people walking around Jerusalem and no one bothered to comment except Matthew, we would have to read this figuratively to salvage Christianity."
Nomad's response: “Matthew tells us that he is drawing his testimony from witnesses that were there (even going so far as to name some of them). No need to read this as metaphor PB."
I am not sure where Nomad got this idea. Let's look at the facts:
The anonymous writer [Matthew] does not say from whom or where he got his information; however, scholarly opinion, with rare exception, holds that the writer copied, almost verbatim, the above passage from the narrative of another anonymous writer. (The more original writer is simply known as “Mark.”) If “Matthew” did copy another’s work, he would have had no need of witnesses or their testimony. The people NAMED in “Mark” are those NAMED in “Matthew.“


First, did Matthew use other sources in creating his Gospel as penatis claims? Well, yes, it is generally agreed that he did do this, and that Mark (or Mark's source) was one of those prior sources. Did he copy everything verbatum? Of course not.

Anyone who takes the time to compare Matthew 27:45-56 with Mark 15:33-41 will see that “Matthew” copied “Mark” almost verbatim. That was my point. Nomad missed it.

If he had, then we would hardly need GMatthew at all since GMark would already say all that needed to be said. So I think we should drop the simplistic notion that Matthew was simply relying exclusively on Mark for his claims.

It is not a “simplistic notion.” Since Matthew 27:45-56 is an almost verbatim copy of Mark 15:33-41, it is perfectly reasonable to believe “Matthew” “relied exclusively on Mark for his claims.”


Second, who were Mark's witnesses, and who were Matthew's?

No one knows where “Mark” got his information. Again, “Matthew” did not need to rely on witnesses, with respect to the above passage.


This is not an easy question to address since we do not have direct statements that "Mary M said this..." and "Suzy Q said that..."

The only real question is: Where did “Mark” get his information?


On the other hand, we do have a number of identifiable individuals listed in each of the Gospels, and it is a pretty safe bet that at least some of these witnesses were still alive at the time the Gospels were written.

1. The fact is, “Mark” mentions a few names. No one knows his sources.
2. When a person uses the phrase “it is a pretty safe bet,” he doesn’t have any evidence. This is pure speculation.
3. No one knows when the anonymous stories were written, much less who could have been alive at the time they were put down on papyrus. No extant MSS containing Matthew 27:45-56/Mark 15:33-41 date earlier than the fourth century. To my knowledge, Codex Sinaiticus is the earliest.

We also know that people who knew and met these witnesses were still alive.

First, Nomad speculates that he knows of witnesses to the resurrection of saints. In point of fact,there were none that anyone knows of. Second, Nomad “knows” of people who “knew and met” these unknown witnesses while they were still alive. Perhaps, Nomad can provide the names of those who he “knows” witnessed the resurrection of saints. Next, perhaps he can demonstrate how he knows anything about anyone who knew these witnesses.


Finally, we have Paul attesting to many of the same events in his own letters (i.e. the birth of Jesus to the House of David, His death on the cross, His burial and the physical ressurection of His body).

1. I have not questioned the historicity of the execution, so why does Nomad bring up the claims of Paul of Tarsus?
2. Anyone who has read the letters attributed to Paul knows that Paul DID NOT make a reference to a resurrection of saints at the time of Jesus’ execution. The only person in the history of humanity who knows of this particular resurrection is the anonymous writer of “Matthew.”
3. Perhaps Nomad would like to explain the relevance of the birth of Jesus to this discussion.
4. Paul DID NOT attest to a physical resurrection of Jesus. He merely stated that “the annointed” had been “raised” and that he had “appeared” to Paul and others. In NONE of the letters attributed to Paul does he attest to a physical resurrection of anyone, much less Jesus. He DID NOT believe physical resurrection to be possible. In 1 Cor. 15:50, he says, “I tell you this, brethren: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of god” Furthermore, in the Acts, Paul is said to have seen a vision of Jesus, NOT a physically resurrected Jesus. It is claimed (in the Acts) that he saw a bright light in the sky and heard a voice.


I have been through these discussions often enough now that I don't really want to have to rehash all the material yet again. But let's just say that the line bought by the sceptics is a pretty flimsy one, and it fails miserably when forced to stand up to close scrutiny.

This is a rather curious assertion. Why not just produce one iota of evidence?


Third, it is certain that both Mark and Matthew (and the other Gospels) were written for living breathing communities of believers.

This is irrelevant to our discussion. Living, breathing people believe in a great number of things. So what!


The fact that these four accounts agree on every single important detail is astonishing to the point of being unprecedented.

The fact is, the four anonymous writers disagree on numerous occasions. “Mark” (according to scholarly opinion)created his narrative from anecdotal evidence. The other writers used his narrative as a guide, sometimes copying him verbatim. At times the other writers altered what “Mark” wrote, depending on their respective sources/theologies. Scholarly opinion holds that much of what is attributed to Jesus in “John” actually came from the mind of the writer. None if this is “astonishing” or “unprededented.” All the MSS were written by human beings. All the MSS were copied by human beings. The books that make up the “canon” were chosen by human beings.

I would challenge people to produce modern biographies on anyone dead more than a hundred years that has done as well in its consistancy. These communities would have, and did, serve as a serious check on mythological developement in the materials and stories being offered to them by the Gospel writers.

The fact is, the anonymous writers were propagandists. Their sole objective was to win over believers. (These [gospels] are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name. John 20:31) They were not historians in any sense of the word. It is for this very reason that not one anonymous propagandist felt the need to avoid mythological embellishment.


In fact, the severity of this check is so complete as to insure that since the Canonical Books have been accepted by Christians (basically dating back to the 2nd Century, and formally in the early 4th Century), NO deviations or significant additions or changes have been permitted.

Nomad is incorrect.
THE CANON
According to Robert Funk, “In the early centuries, what was considered ’canonical’ varied from region to region and was actually determined largely by regional ecclesiastical officials rather than by popular assent: most members of the Christian movement would not have possessed copies of any of the books, and manuscripts of a complete Bible did not yet exist.” (Honest to Jesus, 103.)

DIFFEREENCES
1. No codices of all NT books date earlier than the fourth century and, due to alterations and errors, these are not identical to each other, in any way.
2. Fourth century Codices Sinaiticus, Alexandrinus, and Vaticanus DO NOT contain precisely the books accepted at Nicea in 325 CE. For example, Sinaiticus contains Epistle of Barnabas and Shepherd of Hermas, and “Mark” ends at 16:8. Vaticanus is missing some of the letters attributed to Paul and “Mark” ends at 16:8. Alexandrinus includes I and II Clement. “Mark” does not end at 16:8. (Perhaps Nomad knows which ending of “Mark” was divinely inspired. If so, only he knows.)

TEXT
With respect to textual difficulties, Bart D. Ehrman states, “Interpreters of the NT are faced with a discomforting reality that many of them would like to ignore. In many instances, we don’t know what the authors of the NT actually wrote. It often proves difficult enough to establish what the words of the NT mean; the fact that in some instances we don’t know what the words actually were does more than a little to exacerbate the problem. I say that many interpreters would like to ignore this reality; but perhaps that isn’t strong enough. In point of fact, many interpreters, possibly most, do ignore it, pretending that the textual basis of the Christian scriptures is secure, when unhappily, it is not...It is difficult to know what the authors of the Greek New Testament wrote, in many instances, because all of [the]surviving copies differ from one another, sometimes significantly...No one knows for sure how many differences there are among our surviving witnesses, simply because no one has yet been able to count them all. The best estimates put the number at around 300,000, but perhaps it’s better to put this figure in comparative terms. There are more differences among our manuscripts than there are words in the NT.” (From Lecture One: Text and Interpretation: The Exegetical Significance of the “Original” Text, delivered at Duke Divinity School in 1997)

Bottom line, this means that the story of Jesus' life, death and resurrection was COMPLETED and written down on paper within the lifetime of many of the people who were His contemporaries.

No, it means that modern readers are stuck with ancient MSS that were written by anonymous writers. No one knows precisely when or where the MSS were written. Complete collections do not surface until the fourth century. The codices that are extant date from hundreds of years after the events they depict. Furthermore, all MSS are copies of copies of copies.

How often did this happen in the ancient world? Well, basically never.

Well, actually, historians dismiss depictions of incredible events, regardless of who the writer is. (It would not matter whether Pliny or Josephus or Plutarch or Tacitus or "Matthew" reported people coming out of tombs and appearing to others. People do not come out of their tombs today;therefore, it would be reasonable to think that people did not come out of their tombs at any point in the past.)

So again we have an extraordinary set of books and letters written by Christ's followers even before many of them died.

The MSS are in no way “extraordinary.” (They do depict incredible and unbelievable events, but these are mythological in nature.) I challenge Nomad to give a date of composition, a place of composition, or an author of any “gospel” that is agreed upon by most scholars. I challenge Nomad to give the name of any critical historian who believes the resurrection of saints actually occurred.


I never cease to be amazed about how blaze the sceptics are about this astounding fact, but I never claimed to understand the mind of the sceptic.

Nomad makes unsupported claims and calls them facts. Of course, they may be facts in his own mind, but that does not make them facts in reality.


Near as I can tell, the sceptic's main hope is to keep rationalizing every piece of evidence presented to him until he no longer needs to give it much thought. Such is the nature of faith I suppose.

This is a rather bizarre statement. It is Nomad who believes that dead, stinking and rotting bodies came out of tombs and crawled, or walked, or ran, or flew, to Jerusalem. Nomad believes this based on what was written in MSS that date from hundreds of years after the supposed incredible event occurred. The anonymous writer who wrote of these living dead is the only person in the world who wrote of it.
 
Old 12-31-2000, 09:19 PM   #9
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[I mistakenly put this post in the wrong place. Sorry.]

[This message has been edited by 2sense (edited December 31, 2000).]
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Old 01-01-2001, 06:08 AM   #10
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quote:

penatis: However, in “Mark,“ the people who stood at a distance from the execution witnessed nothing but the execution.

Goy, this is one of the worst statements made in this post. The women that witnessed the execution also participated in the burial, and were there when the tomb was found empty.

My comment related to what happened at the execution, not what occurred later. Nomad stated the named women were witnesses to the resurrection of the saints. I say he is incorrect. If he can demonstrate otherwise, I would be interested in his evidence.

quote:

penatis: (It would have been impossible for those close enough to see the execution to have seen the curtain tear; also, there could not have been a solar eclipse at the time of the execution.)

Point one, so what? Who said that the women at the cross were the only witnesses?

(Nomad stated, earlier, that “Matthew” named several witnesses to the resurrection of the saints. He did not. The only person who knew of the resurrection was the anonymous writer.) My point stands: It would have been impossible for those close enough to see the execution to have seen the curtain tear. It is Nomad, not me, who must provide for the witnesses. For, no writer names any.

And if you want to claim that Mark and Matthew were making up the bit about the curtain being torn, no doubt you have a document from the period in question backing you up I hope. Or are you making yet another argument from silence?

I believe “Mark,” as a propagandist, said the curtain tore into--for reasons only he could answer. Did it actually happen? I certainly doubt that it did. But, I am not a Christian apologist. They have “faith” when there is no evidence.

On point 2, I already showed in the other thread that it was a lunar eclipse, not a solar eclipse that took place on the day Jesus died.

Nomad showed nothing of the kind. He alluded to an article written by Christian apologists, not scientists. They began with a preconceived notion and made as many assumptions as was necessary to arrive at a foregone conclusion. Besides, as Pompous Bastard pointed out, the anonymous writer said darkness occurred during daylight hours, not at night.


quote:

penatis: For, “Mark“ knows of no earthquake or resurrection.

So? Jesus never used His name in ANY of the Gospels. Does that mean He didn't know what it was? See why arguments from silence are so lame?

Since I am taking a rational, logical approach to history, I question why only “Matthew” mentioned an earthquake and a resurrection. It is easier for a sensible person to believe that “Matthew” embellished “Mark” for theological reasons than to think there actually was an earthquake and a resurrection and only he, “Matthew“, felt the need to mention them. This is especially true considering the fact that earthquakes and resurrections were apocalyptic signs of the end of times.

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penatis: It is inconceivable that he would have not reported them, if they had actually happened.

And you KNOW this because...?

I know this because I understand common sense, rational thought, human nature, and logic.

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penatis: “Matthew” simply added an earthquake and resurrection of saints, complete with additional witnesses, to the more original work.

And pentatis offers ZERO evidence to support this claim outside of arguments from silence. Please do better than this.

I offer as evidence the almost identical passages Matthew 27:45-57 and Mark 15:33-41. If the reader will compare these two short passages, he/she will see what has been obvious to scholars for over a century. “Matthew” copied “Mark” and slightly embellished the more original work, not to record history as it happened, but to give his own theological interpretation of the event.



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penatis: With respect to the above passage, “Matthew” does say that the unnamed centurion and others with him saw the earthquake and what took place. But only he knows of the “others.” “Mark” makes no mention of them, nor does anyone else.

So?

Nomad said the witnesses to the resurrection were named; they WERE NOT. Furthermore, no one knows of them besides “Matthew.”

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penatis: Furthermore, those persons who are NAMED in 27:56 are not the same as those mentioned with the centurion, for the writer states, "Many women were ALSO there," and they were "looking on from a distance."

So?

You said the witnesses to the resurrection of saints were named. They WERE NOT.

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penatis: No one knows what they saw. (Another anonymous writer,"John", contradicts "Matthew" and "Mark," so what should the reader believe?)

Please penatis. I am too busy to be dealing with these kinds of silly claims without supports. Do better.

Apparently, Nomad, you are too busy to deal with legitimate questions as they relate to biblical contradictions. Have you actually taken a look at the contradictions?

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penatis: Even if we were to take “Matthew” at face value, there are other insurmountable problems: How could anyone at the scene of the execution have been a witness to the resurrection of dead bodies (as Nomad states)?

Umm... why should they witness a resurrection? What if they simply meet the individuals later? And who said the women at the cross were the only witnesses? I do think you mentioned that there were others.

Nomad stated that the named women witnessed the resurrection of the saints. This is not stated in the NT.

 
 

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