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Old 21st August 2019, 02:37 AM   #361
IanS
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There is only one relevant question in all of this. And that is -

- what evidence is produced to show that Jesus was a real person?

That's it! That's the entire & complete “bottom line” for all possible debate in this subject.




Footnote to the above -

So far, the pro-HJ side has been completely unwilling to produce any evidence at all.

That's one difference between this thread and all the tens of thousands of posts that were made over the last decade in all the previous HJ threads. There, the pro-HJ posters were posting all sorts quotes from the bible, as well as quotes from Tacitus and Josephus (and occasionally from others of that period) …

… but the problem with all those quotes was, and still is, that none of them are credible as reliable evidence of their authors ever knowing any such real person as Jesus, because all of those quotes have come from such things as -


(a) the anonymously written gospels, that are in any case just religious preaching about impossible untrue miracles.

(b) 11th century copies of Tacitus and Josephus, where neither Tacitus or Josephus were even alive to confirm anything about Jesus, but where both authors only make extremely scant mention of Jesus by reporting hearsay from unknown informants. And where the only known informants of the time were Christian preachers themselves.

(c) the letters of Paul, but where Paul makes specifically clear that he had only ever “met” Jesus as a religious vision in the heavens. And where all the other people Paul names as having “met” Jesus were also only ever described as witnessing Jesus as a religious vision in the heavens.



That's it apparently. That is the sum total of all the most credible evidence for Jesus.

Do I believe or claim that level of evidence shows Jesus was not real? No. Of course not. He might have been real despite such a hopeless body of evidence.

Do I believe that such evidence is sufficient to conclude that Jesus was probably real? Well, no, you have to be seriously deluded or seriously “biased” (ie already strongly predisposed to believe in Jesus), to accept a standard of evidence as awful as that.

So far all we've seen here is an appeal to authority, saying that we should believe because of a claimed consensus of experts (experts who are rarely if ever named, other than numerous Bible Scholars like Ehrman, Sanders, Crossan etc.). That is of course a fallacious argument to begin with, unless & until those “experts” are quoted for the evidence which they claim to have … so what evidence do they produce?, well it is exactly the quite hopeless claims of a, b, and c above.
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Old 21st August 2019, 02:39 AM   #362
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Multiple persons are a single HJ?? ... What?? …. multiple different people are certainly not a single individual ever known to anyone!
It wouldn't be the first time that the lives of more than one person are conflated. For some reason the suggestion comes as a shock to you.

Quote:
... but then, the emergence of science slowly convinced everyone (well everyone except billions of current day theists! ... inc. Bible Scholars!) that none of those miracles stories could possibly have been true. So how did all those untrue Jesus stories ever get into all the gospels in the first place? The answer can only be that the gospel writers were simply inventing the stories, i.e. to put it bluntly they were lying. Lying repeatedly over & over again on virtually every page ...
They couldn't have just added the miraculous stuff? Why is the "only" answer that they made up everything?

Quote:
And that is apparently claimed by your experts as their very best evidence … a book filled with lies from end-to-end.
You've participated long enough in these discussions to know that this isn't true. I always say, if you know you're right, you don't need to exaggerate or lie. So why do you lie? No one's claiming that the bible is "their very best evidence". Your phrasing above also implies that there are nothing but lies in it.
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Old 21st August 2019, 03:16 AM   #363
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
It wouldn't be the first time that the lives of more than one person are conflated. For some reason the suggestion comes as a shock to you.

Who says I was shocked? Do you want me to call you a "liar" for saying that? Because you have no idea at all as to whetehr I or anyone else here is "shocked" ... you just invented that insult as pure deliberate untruth. But then, you do that all the time on this site. You've tried that with everyone else here who has disagreed with you.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
They couldn't have just added the miraculous stuff? Why is the "only" answer that they made up everything?

The gospel writers could have just added the miraculous stuff. Of course that is possible. Can you quote where I have ever said it was impossible? Because on least 6 occasions here already I have stressed that the reason for rejecting the gospel writers as a reliable source is NOT because they must have invented every single word they wrote, but because their gospel writing is now known to be filled with mythical invented untruths (“lies” to put it bluntly) in almost every significant mention they made for Jesus. That makes them totally unreliable as a credible source, because they were constantly making dishonest claims about Jesus.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
You've participated long enough in these discussions to know that this isn't true. I always say, if you know you're right, you don't need to exaggerate or lie. So why do you lie? No one's claiming that the bible is "their very best evidence". Your phrasing above also implies that there are nothing but lies in it.

Why are you such a lair? You have been caught lying several times in this thread. Only your opponents here are not such silly attempted internet bullies as to get into that gutter-trash game of calling other people here liars.

And it's certainly not a lie to say their source is really just the bible. Because as far we can honestly tell, the only source for the all non-biblical writers was again the bible or it's Christian preaching ... we have no reliable information to show that any of those non-biblical mentions (all of which are extremely brief, and all of which come as anonymous much later hearsay) were independent of the biblical writing ... every source leads straight back to the biblical preaching.

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Old 21st August 2019, 04:23 AM   #364
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
you have no idea at all as to whetehr I or anyone else here is "shocked" ...
Yeah, I don't know what gave me that impression. Surely not the "Multiple persons are a single HJ?? ... What?? …."

Quote:
you just invented that insult as pure deliberate untruth.
Being told that something comes to you as a shock is not an insult.

Quote:
The gospel writers could have just added the miraculous stuff. Of course that is possible. Can you quote where I have ever said it was impossible?
Sure:
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
... but then, the emergence of science slowly convinced everyone (well everyone except billions of current day theists! ... inc. Bible Scholars!) that none of those miracles stories could possibly have been true. So how did all those untrue Jesus stories ever get into all the gospels in the first place? The answer can only be that the gospel writers were simply inventing the stories, i.e. to put it bluntly they were lying. Lying repeatedly over & over again on virtually every page ...
The "only" answer can be X, means it can't be Y. Now you say Y is possible, so I guess you meant "the most likely answer is X". Of course, there's also Z: they believed it to be true and didn't make up anything. Less likely, I suppose, but still one of several possibilities, despite your claim that there was only one.

Quote:
Why are you such a lair? You have been caught lying several times in this thread.
Zero times. You cannot point to a single lie that I've made because I didn't make one. But given that you've shown above that you don't know what a lie is, or what an insult is, I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

Quote:
Only your opponents here are not such silly attempted internet bullies as to get into that gutter-trash game of calling other people here liars.
Calling out people's lies is not bullying.

Quote:
And it's certainly not a lie to say their source is really just the bible.
That's not what you said. You said "And that is apparently claimed by your experts as their very best evidence". That's the part I responded to, remember? I quoted it in the post you replied to.
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Old 21st August 2019, 04:50 AM   #365
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
They couldn't have just added the miraculous stuff? Why is the "only" answer that they made up everything?
They could have. But how do we know whether they added miraculous stuff to a real person or just made up the whole thing?

There is a danger that you just strip away the things that are obviously false and then assume that what is left which is plausible is true.

But that approach could leave us with a historical Peter Parker who just couldn't climb buildings too.
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Old 21st August 2019, 04:57 AM   #366
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Originally Posted by Archie Gemmill Goal View Post
They could have. But how do we know whether they added miraculous stuff to a real person or just made up the whole thing?

There is a danger that you just strip away the things that are obviously false and then assume that what is left which is plausible is true.
Absolutely. I don't think anybody's doing that, though.

However, not being a historian, I can't get into the nitty-gritty details of their craft. We'd have to find one and ask them how they can smelt fact from legend, and forge history from it. But from what I understand they not only read the text but analyse its composition, compare it with other versions and with known history and culture. For instance, if a mundane bit of the story stays the same throughout, save wording, it might be more credible, though you can never be sure.

History's really hard, especially when you go back to before film could record it.
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Old 21st August 2019, 05:16 AM   #367
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Absolutely. I don't think anybody's doing that, though.



However, not being a historian, I can't get into the nitty-gritty details of their craft. We'd have to find one and ask them how they can smelt fact from legend, and forge history from it. But from what I understand they not only read the text but analyse its composition, compare it with other versions and with known history and culture. For instance, if a mundane bit of the story stays the same throughout, save wording, it might be more credible, though you can never be sure.



History's really hard, especially when you go back to before film could record it.
One way is to test your new enquiry against what is already known. So if the Bible says there was a Roman census that required people to return to their birth place we can look to see what we know about Roman census etc.

And this is where the historical Jesus is very much lacking, the mundane elements from the bible not only can't be verified they are often contra to what we do know.

So we are left with simply stories.
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Old 21st August 2019, 05:17 AM   #368
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
One way is to test your new enquiry against what is already known. So if the Bible says there was a Roman census that required people to return to their birth place we can look to see what we know about Roman census etc.
That's a good example. One that probably never happened, in fact. Is my memory faulty, or is that in only one of the Gospels? Matthew, I think, in order to justify the ridiculous birth in Bethlehem to fit prophecy.
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Old 21st August 2019, 06:39 AM   #369
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Absolutely. I don't think anybody's doing that, though.
Well, I am not so sure. There seems to be a fair bit of that going on.

Quote:
However, not being a historian, I can't get into the nitty-gritty details of their craft. We'd have to find one and ask them how they can smelt fact from legend, and forge history from it. But from what I understand they not only read the text but analyse its composition, compare it with other versions and with known history and culture. For instance, if a mundane bit of the story stays the same throughout, save wording, it might be more credible, though you can never be sure.

History's really hard, especially when you go back to before film could record it.
Absolutely history is hard. And I am not a trained historian either so I am only going by what I can see offered here as arguments and there isn't much that is terribly convincing and when people start arguing that 'history has different standards of evidence' then alarm bells sound.

I will say that when I hear the mythicist hypotheses they seem even more far fetched so I am no fan of them but I do wish people would be more careful in how the talk about the historicity of Jesus.

If literally all we are saying is that it is more likely than not that Christianity formed around an actual person that we know nothing about then we might as well call him a historical Bob as a historical Jesus because as far as I am aware there is not a single detail of his life that we can vouch for.
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Old 21st August 2019, 10:49 AM   #370
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I think there is an unsolvable problem with the hj question. As scant as the evidence there is we would accept the historicity of other individuals in ancient history. So why not do the same with Jesus? It seems to many and understandably so that refusing to accept Jesus as well simply demonstrates bias.

We would accept the historicity of non-religious characters because we don't care. It changes nothing if Alexander the Great or Socrates didn't exist. But if Jesus was suddenly dismissed by historians as only a myth, it would rock the Western world.

If you get up on the stand in a trial and lie about something your entire testimony can be dismissed. So why isn't that reasonable to do with Jesus? In fact, one could argue the Romans did that already not accepting a dozen apocryphal gospels.

I see Paul as simply a snake oil salesman. A charismatic man who found a way to make a living. But I think there were many people making their living this way. Just like today's preachers. And that people added to the story over time. Whether there was some truth at the beginning, we'll never know. But i find it very interesting that the fist historical mention of Jesus comes from someone who never met Jesus.
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Old 21st August 2019, 11:15 AM   #371
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
I think there is an unsolvable problem with the hj question. As scant as the evidence there is we would accept the historicity of other individuals in ancient history. So why not do the same with Jesus? It seems to many and understandably so that refusing to accept Jesus as well simply demonstrates bias.
I think the problem is the opposite. I think history is rife with uncertainty and that there are uncountable number of events and people that can't be established with certainty. But nobody has a vested interest in making it appear otherwise.

Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
We would accept the historicity of non-religious characters because we don't care. It changes nothing if Alexander the Great or Socrates didn't exist. But if Jesus was suddenly dismissed by historians as only a myth, it would rock the Western world.
Don't know what evidence Socrates is based on Alexander the Great is not in the same class as Jesus. The evidence is not scant there.

I'm not sure it would rock the western world. I know several educated theologians who don't think the evidence for Jesus is sufficient to establish he existed. It's just one more thing they accept on faith. And there are tons of people who reject everything science has to say, they'd just ignore the historians anyway.

And we haven't really established what historians think as a whole. It may be most of them already dismiss as myth. Or view it as unresolvable.
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Old 21st August 2019, 11:27 AM   #372
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Originally Posted by Ricardo View Post
Has anyone who recommends loving enemies existed?
Of course. Many Christians have done so. As have, I think, a few non-Christians. I think it's a very fine sentiment, with considerable moral punch. But the truth or goodness of the idea is utterly independent of the question of whether or not there was a real Jesus who actually said it. All that is required is that people believe the idea is a good one and act accordingly. It helps if those people believe a real Jesus really said it, but even that is not really necessary.

That said, I suspect that there probably was something like a historical Jesus, although it's quite possible he was a pastiche of characters and statements, or that some things were attributed to him that were not his. The time in which Jesus is presumed to have flourished was one of great upheaval, with multiple religious sects and claimed messiahs arising. If a clever religious thinker or reformer was trying to form a new sect, it would likely have been easier and more convincing to pin his ideas to a real person than a totally fictitious one, more so if the real person was the author of at least some, but I'm not sure it matters all that much.
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Old 21st August 2019, 11:58 AM   #373
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
I think the problem is the opposite. I think history is rife with uncertainty and that there are uncountable number of events and people that can't be established with certainty. But nobody has a vested interest in making it appear otherwise.



Don't know what evidence Socrates is based on Alexander the Great is not in the same class as Jesus. The evidence is not scant there.

I'm not sure it would rock the western world. I know several educated theologians who don't think the evidence for Jesus is sufficient to establish he existed. It's just one more thing they accept on faith. And there are tons of people who reject everything science has to say, they'd just ignore the historians anyway.

And we haven't really established what historians think as a whole. It may be most of them already dismiss as myth. Or view it as unresolvable.
I believe I had read that the vast majority of evidence for Alexander the great was not contemporary with his life. And that is similar to Jesus. But I may very well be mistaken. My point is that with ancient history much of the evidence for Emperors and military leaders is this kind of evidence. There are coins and statues and stories written about them. And they are not contemporary. But that's what is available.
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Old 21st August 2019, 12:50 PM   #374
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
I think the problem is the opposite. I think history is rife with uncertainty and that there are uncountable number of events and people that can't be established with certainty. But nobody has a vested interest in making it appear otherwise.
I really think we're saying the same thing. Well sort of.

The further back in history the more acute the problem. Less evidence is available and much that is has been filtered or embellished. These are peoples that lived on oral tradition and story telling. I think it's safe to say that some tales of whoppers snuck in the back door and became real people and events to historians.

But I also think while its important for historians to dismiss the obvious frauds an overly rigorous attempt to do so would make their field of study even more boring than it is.
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Old 21st August 2019, 02:31 PM   #375
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Who says I was shocked? Do you want me to call you a "liar" for saying that? Because you have no idea at all as to whether I or anyone else here is "shocked" ...
Yeah, I don't know what gave me that impression. Surely not the "Multiple persons are a single HJ?? ... What?? …."

Where did I say I was shocked? You just invented that claim of yours as a pure deliberate lie (yet again) … quote where I ever said I was “shocked” about your suggestion of Jesus being a composite of Multiple Persons … Go on quote it, where is it? …

Can't quote me saying I was shocked at your suggestion? No? OK then, you are flat out liar.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
you just invented that insult as pure deliberate untruth. But then, you do that all the time on this site. You've tried that with everyone else here who has disagreed with you.
Being told that something comes to you as a shock is not an insult.

It's not up to you to decide what may be insulting to anyone. And when you again now repeat that it was a shock to me – Quote me, where did I ever say it was a “shock” … You are again a flat out repeated liar … you just can't stop it, you have shown here for all to see that you are a habitual liar.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
The gospel writers could have just added the miraculous stuff. Of course that is possible. Can you quote where I have ever said it was impossible?
Sure:
Originally Posted by*IanS*
... but then, the emergence of science slowly convinced everyone (well everyone except billions of current day theists! ... inc. Bible Scholars!) that none of those miracle stories could possibly have been true. So how did all those untrue Jesus stories ever get into all the gospels in the first place? The answer can only be that the gospel writers were simply inventing the stories, i.e. to put it bluntly they were lying. Lying repeatedly over & over again on virtually every page ...



The "only" answer can be X, means it can't be Y. Now you say Y is possible, so I guess you meant "the most likely answer is X". Of course, there's also Z: they believed it to be true and didn't make up anything. Less likely, I suppose, but still one of several possibilities, despite your claim that there was only one.

Well that's another flat-out whopping great lie, and everyone here can see it. What you quoted and highlighted, is me saying “So how did all those untrue Jesus stories ever get into all the gospels in the first place?*The answer can only be that the gospel writers were simply inventing the stories, i.e. to put it bluntly they were lying.”

... that does not at all have me saying that every word written by the gospel authors had to be a lie. That quote does not have me saying any such thing – you blatant liar. What that quote from me says is that they were inventing untrue (lying) stories of Jesus in their claimed miracles, which they produced on almost every page. It says the miracle stories are untrue. It does not say that if they mentioned a town or place or peoples names then that too was a fabricated “lie”.

Please quote accurately and honestly next time, instead of adding yet another to your huge list of constantly lying about what others have said.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Why are you such a lair? You have been caught lying several times in this thread. Only your opponents here are not such silly attempted internet bullies as to get into that gutter-trash game of calling other people here liars.
Zero times. You cannot point to a single lie that I've made because I didn't make one. But given that you've shown above that you don't know what a lie is, or what an insult is, I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

You now have three separate lies in a row directly above … you were unable to say anything without lying.



Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
And it's certainly not a lie to say their source is really just the bible. Because as far we can honestly tell, the only source for the all non-biblical writers was again the bible or it's Christian preaching ... we have no reliable information to show that any of those non-biblical mentions (all of which are extremely brief, and all of which come as anonymous much later hearsay) were independent of the biblical writing ... every source leads straight back to the biblical preaching.
Calling out people's lies is not bullying.

Well there are no lies from me here (or anywhere else … ever!). But it's you who cannot tell the truth in anything. You are nothing at all except a perpetual dishonest liar.

Earlier in the thread you had several exchanges with Archie Gemmel, where he had to keep telling you that you had misrepresented what he'd said … and you just kept right on doing that. You are doing the same again now. You are a blatant liar.


Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Originally Posted by IanS View Post
And it's certainly not a lie to say their source is really just the bible.

That's not what you said. You said "And that is apparently claimed by your experts as their very best evidence". That's the part I responded to, remember? I quoted it in the post you replied to.

Why didn't you quote the actual post? Where is the link to the post where I said that, so we can see it in context?

That quote is actually in post 339. And there I make crystal clear that I said it was the bible that is their very best evidence. Well that certainly is the best evidence that your “experts” are relying on. Without the bible they would have absolutely nothing at all … there is no evidence that later non-biblical writers would have any way of even mentioning Jesus at all except for what had been decades of earlier biblical preaching … the entire idea of Jesus and everything we have as what he was said to have done really all stems from the bible.

So yet again you are shown to be flat out lying about it.

You can barely write a single sentence here without deliberately misrepresenting what your opponents have said.

And by the way we are still waiting for you to tell us what you are claiming as sufficient evidence for you to believe Jesus was real …

… for about the tenth time now, do you have any evidence of a real Jesus or not? Where is it??
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Old 21st August 2019, 10:30 PM   #376
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post

Ahh this is the crux of the problem. Can we uncouple the miracles? It's also a fallacy to suggest that just because some other historical figures also had a miracle or two associated with them that their case is like Jesus. There is a very important distinction. The only reason Jesus is remembered is because of his divinity and miracles. He's not Alexander the Great

I have to wonder what we would be saying about Jesus if Constantine hadn't embraced the religion in the 4th century and the religion had died out? If I'm not mistaken, Josephus mentioned other Christ figures. Do we assume they were all real as well?


Just on that question of whether we can "uncouple" the miracles (we actually mean "pretend that the miracles are not in the gospels") - the answer is obviously, No.

No, that's not possible to present the gospels as if the miracles were not there.

Why is that not possible? It's not possible because that would be trying to create different new gospels that do not actually exist (and that never did exist), by simply crossing-out all the parts that show why the gospels are actually not true ...

... what you'd be doing by "uncoupling" the miracles is simply removing all the parts that you now realise are untrue fictions about Jesus, until you have changed it so much that no miracles remain, and then pointing to what you have created and saying "ah, look, these gospels are now quite believable, see there are no untrue miracles there! So now, this is evidence of a real Jesus!" ...

No. That's not remotely any sort of acceptable honest practice. And nobody should ever be taken-in by an argument like that.The miracles are what was written in the gospels, and they cannot be removed without admitting that by doing so you are deliberately trying to invent new gospels that are completely different from the actual ones that you are in fact relying upon.

It would be like taking the Superman comics and crossing out all the flying and all the supernatural strength stuff, until you had got to the point of just a man who also works in a newspaper office under the name of Clark Kent (or whatever his name was), and who occasionally puts on a superman outfit and walks about in the USA (he does not fly anywhere because that needs to be crossed out as untrue), and then he just talks to people and does nothing else, and then you point to your new creation and say “wow, look no more miracles, here we have a perfectly believable superman...so now we can conclude that he probably or “certainly” exists!” ... valid historians technique! ... problem sorted, Jesus/Superman found!

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Old 22nd August 2019, 03:17 AM   #377
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Where did I say I was shocked?
You acted utterly surprised i.e. shocked. The fact of the matter is that you flipped out at the mere suggestion that several people could be conflated into one. That suggests you don't have the slightest idea of what you're talking about here.

Quote:
It's not up to you to decide what may be insulting to anyone.
No, but getting insulted at being told you were surprised sounds rather silly. Have it your way.

Quote:
What you quoted and highlighted, is me saying “So how did all those untrue Jesus stories ever get into all the gospels in the first place?*The answer can only be that the gospel writers were simply inventing the stories, i.e. to put it bluntly they were lying.”
And I pointed out that this isn't the only possibility despite you saying it's the only possibility. You made a mistake by saying that. Why can't you admit that? Why attempt to throw the blame on me?

Quote:
Please quote accurately and honestly next time, instead of adding yet another to your huge list of constantly lying about what others have said.
I don't lie. Ever. Whether you accept that is no concern of mine.

But I guess now you've abandoned every pretense of having actual arguments to make on this topic? You grasp every opportunity to change the topic to something else, deny the existence of experts and evidence, and even pretend that something that was said a whole post ago wasn't there. It's very clear that you have a deeply emotional commitment to Jesus being completely fake, despite what you said earlier, and that you cannot accept another possibility. When you can't get your way, you become hysterical, seeing insults and lies everywhere. It's a sad display.

Quote:
And by the way we are still waiting for you to tell us what you are claiming as sufficient evidence for you to believe Jesus was real …

… for about the tenth time now, do you have any evidence of a real Jesus or not? Where is it??
I've already answered that multiple times. If you can't keep track of conversations, you have no place on a discussion forum.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 04:32 AM   #378
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
You acted utterly surprised i.e. shocked. The fact of the matter is that you flipped out at the mere suggestion that several people could be conflated into one. That suggests you don't have the slightest idea of what you're talking about here.



No, but getting insulted at being told you were surprised sounds rather silly. Have it your way.



And I pointed out that this isn't the only possibility despite you saying it's the only possibility. You made a mistake by saying that. Why can't you admit that? Why attempt to throw the blame on me?



I don't lie. Ever. Whether you accept that is no concern of mine.

But I guess now you've abandoned every pretense of having actual arguments to make on this topic? You grasp every opportunity to change the topic to something else, deny the existence of experts and evidence, and even pretend that something that was said a whole post ago wasn't there. It's very clear that you have a deeply emotional commitment to Jesus being completely fake, despite what you said earlier, and that you cannot accept another possibility. When you can't get your way, you become hysterical, seeing insults and lies everywhere. It's a sad display.



I've already answered that multiple times. If you can't keep track of conversations, you have no place on a discussion forum.


No, I didn't act "utterly surprised and shocked" (nor "flipped out") about anything here, and most particularly not about you making the very silly claim that multiple people (none of whom you have any idea about or any knowledge about at all) were used to create the stories of a single different person named Jesus (Iesous, Yehoshua). You just completely invented that claim of “utter shock and surprise”, as yet another quite silly attempted deception.

Who are these “multiple” other people that you think were used to create biblical stories of Jesus? What did any of those people ever say or do? Do you know anything about them at all? Do you know if they even existed? Or is it just a complete invention that you and others have dreamed up in an attempt to cover up whatever you think would otherwise be some uncomfortable facts/errors/suspicions in what the gospel writers said about the miraculous “Jesus”?

Also – if it was actually 2, 3, 4 or more completely different but entirely real people whose deeds had been all lumped together to make a messiah story, then that messiah would not have been any single real person at all... a messiah created like from the lives of numerous people would not have been any real individual at all … he would have just been a figment of the gospel writers imagination formed entirely from various other people …

… notice that it would have to be “entirely” formed from the lives of those “multiple others”, because in that situation if there had also been a real individual Jesus known to the gospel writers then they would have just written about that real persons life and not invented it from the lives of several other unknown people.


Turning to your final highlighted remark - when you said that you already answered multiple times for what evidence you produce to show why you believe Jesus was real - even in just saying that, you are yet again failing to produce that evidence.

Just tell us clearly what you believe is the convincing evidence?

It's not an answer to that question if you just keep telling us that you believe that some “experts” (claimed “experts”) have the evidence. That's just the well known fallacy of an “Appeal to Authority”. You need to tell us which which bits of their claimed evidence you are endorsing as convincing to you … so which bit's of their “evidence” is that?

And also – it's not really you offering us any actual evidence when you merely agree with what Archie Gemmill put to you when he asked if you were believing in Jesus because you thought that was the most likely explanation for how Christianity had ever arisen in the first place (see Archie's post 237 where he puts that to you, and your agreement to that in post 242). You are not offering any evidence there. Instead all you are doing with that reply is comitting the known fallacy of making an “Argument from Personal Incredulity” … i.e. saying that you cannot personally think of a better explanation, and so you decide to believe Jesus was real!

So again (must be the 10th time by now) -

- just tell us what actual evidence are you claiming to make you think Jesus was real?


And by the way I have no idea what your above post says in-between those two highlights that I just addressed, because I'm not interested in wasting more time with your various claims until you actually produce some evidence to back up your belief that Jesus real.

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Old 22nd August 2019, 04:47 AM   #379
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
No, I didn't act "utterly surprised and shocked"
Well you did to me. I even quoted the exact bit that led to that.

Quote:
silly claim that multiple people (none of whom you have any idea about or any knowledge about at all) were used to create the stories of a single different person named Jesus (Iesous, Yehoshua).
First, it wasn't a claim. You really should read more carefully. Second, what's silly about it? It happens all the time, in history, in fiction and myth, etc. That's why I said you don't appear to know much about the topic.

Quote:
Who are these “multiple” other people that you think were used to create biblical stories of Jesus? What did any of those people ever say or do? Do you know anything about them at all?
I defined what 'historical Jesus' means to me and what would qualify. I suggested that it might be more than one person. What is it about that that indicates that I know who they are?

Are you done misrepresenting my posts? It's not going to make you any more right, and it shows a lot of irony, after what you said about me earlier.

Quote:
Just tell us clearly what you believe is the convincing evidence?
Again, I've done so multiple times in previous threads in which you participated. Said evidence did not convince you then and I have no delusion that it will convince you now. I did touch upon a couple of reasons earlier. I suggest you look back and read what I post.

Quote:
It's not an answer to that question if you just keep telling us that you believe that some “experts” (claimed “experts”) have the evidence.
That's not what I said.

Quote:
And also – it's not really you offering us any actual evidence when you merely agree with what Archie Gemmill put to you when he asked if you were believing in Jesus because you thought that was the most likely explanation for how Christianity had ever arisen in the first place (see Archie's post 237 where puts that to you, and your agreement to that in post 242). You are not offering any evidence there.
I was discussing with Archie about a particular aspect, and one of the things that makes me lean in that direction. I don't see why you'd expect that to be anything else.

Quote:
And by the way I have no idea what your above post says in-between those two highlights that I just addressed, because I'm not interested in wasting more time with your various claims until you actually produce some evidence to back up your belief that Jesus real.
I am not at your beck and call, and I've stated numerous times what I mean to discuss in this thread. The evidence for the historical Jesus is not part of that. You might as well ask me to debunk the Shroud of Turin; it's just as relevant to the topic, and just as irrelevant to what I am discussing.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 06:48 AM   #380
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Just on that question of whether we can "uncouple" the miracles (we actually mean "pretend that the miracles are not in the gospels") - the answer is obviously, No.

No, that's not possible to present the gospels as if the miracles were not there.

Why is that not possible? It's not possible because that would be trying to create different new gospels that do not actually exist (and that never did exist), by simply crossing-out all the parts that show why the gospels are actually not true ...

... what you'd be doing by "uncoupling" the miracles is simply removing all the parts that you now realise are untrue fictions about Jesus, until you have changed it so much that no miracles remain, and then pointing to what you have created and saying "ah, look, these gospels are now quite believable, see there are no untrue miracles there! So now, this is evidence of a real Jesus!" ...


...snip...
There is another level you need to consider as well, we can also remove the "mundane" stuff that we know is wrong or inaccurate (by comparing what we do know about that time with what the bible claims). What we are left with is very little bar the letters of Paul and as I think most agree he is talking about a spiritual being, so we know the Jesus he talks about didn't exist.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 08:12 AM   #381
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Also – re. my previous post on the Dead Sea Scrolls as a quite obvious source from which Paul & the members of the Church of God at Jerusalem (see Paul's letter for all that) could easily have been forming a religious belief around the idea of a spiritual messiah of the distant past (up to 250 years before Paul), ie an Apocalyptic Messiah belief which afaik everyone agrees that Paul was preaching - below are some links and quotes on the Dead Sea Scrolls where the Scrolls certainly do talk about their belief in an apocalyptic messiah.

But just to recap what I said in that previous post - Afaik, everyone agrees that Paul was preaching an apocalyptic message of messiah belief. Afaik, there are no dissenting voices on that. However, what the quotes below show, is that the Dead Sea Scrolls were also preaching an apocalyptic messiah. But note that the Scrolls were written as much as 250 years or more before Paul was even born ... although experts all agree that those Scrolls continued to be written all through the lifetime of Paul and up until about 100AD (see the dating links & quotes below) ... and the writers of those scrolls were preaching and writing in the exact same few square-miles as Paul ... and not only that but, the Letters of Paul make very clear that Paul himself says that before his vision Paul was preaching the traditional OT version of Judaism and he was vehemently persecuting on the streets others who were preaching some different version of Jewish messiah belief (such as the Essenes were doing with their Dead Sea Scrolls) ... but then Paul had his vision and the sudden conversion where he say's that he suddenly realised that he had been wrong in his traditional messiah beliefs, and that God had now revealed to him the true messaih meaning "hidden so long" in scripture, after which Paul instantly began to preach the same belief as those he'd been persecuting, and where that new preaching from Paul was now of an apocalyptic messiah (just as they had in the Scrolls) ...

OK, some of the quotes below are quite long (just for context), but I've highlighted the relevant bits to show (a) the dates, and (b) the apocalyptic nature of the Scroll beliefs -



Apocalyptic Nature of the Messiah Belief in the Dead Sea Scrolls

https://www.deadseascrolls.org.il/fe...s?locale=en_US

4Q Apocryphon of Daniel*
Date:*50–1 bce, Herodian Period*
Language: Aramaic


The Dead Sea Scrolls contain extensive apocalyptic literature relating to the final messianic battle at the End of Days. The Aramaic Apocryphon of Daniel describes either a messianic figure or a boastful ruler that will arise as “Son of God” or “Son of the Most High”, like the apocalyptic redeemer in the biblical book of Daniel. The text calls to mind the New Testament proclamation of the angel Gabriel concerning the new-born Jesus: “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High… ” (Luke 1:32)



https://biblicalstudies.org.uk/pdf/emwl/dss_rowley.pdf

In chapters vi-xxxvi we have the expectation of a world judgement, followed by the establishment of the kingdom of God, with Jerusalem and the Temple at its centre.38 There is no thought of the Messiah as the head of the kingdom. This is closely similar to what we find in the book of Daniel. It does not mean that either the author of Daniel or the author of these chapters thought of the kingdom as without a leader, but that the person of the leader was not in the focus of their thought. The Apocalypse of Weeks thought of history as divided into periods, the seventh being marked by apostasy, the eighth being marked by righteousness, the ninth by the destruction of the wicked, and the tenth by the bringing in of a period of eternal bliss[/B]. The remainder of chapters xci-civ show us the wicked apostatizing and following idolatry,39 and promised torment hereafter, while the righteous are promised bliss.40 There is 28 Cf. The Book of Enoch, 2nd ed., 1912, pp. lii f., 1 f., and Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, ii, 1913, pp. 170 f. On p. 171, however, he says the date of the latter section is wholly doubtful. 29 Cf. The Relevance of Apocalyptic, 2nd ed., 1947, pp. 78 ff. F. Martin, Le livre d’Hénoch,’ 1906, dates the Apocalypse of Weeks before 170 B.C., and chapters vi-xxxvi circa 166 B.C. M.-J. Lagrange, Le Messianisme chez les Juifs, 1909, p. 62, took a similar view, but in Le Judaisme avant Jésus-Christ, 1931, pp. 113 f., he assigns chapters vi-xxxvi to a date anterior to 125 B.C., and the Apocalypse of Weeks to circa 152 B.C. J. B. Frey, in Pirot’s Supplément an Dictionnaire de la Bible, i, 1928, cols. 358, 366, dated the former section in the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes, and the latter during the early Maccabaean period. A. Weiser, Einleitung in das Alte Testament, 2nd ed., 1949, p. 311, assigns the origin of both of these sections to the Maccabaean period. O. Eissfeldt, Einleitung in das A1te Testament, 2nd ed., 1956, p. 765, assigns the Apocalypse of Weeks to circa 170 B.C.

For some scholars who prefer later dates cf. The Relevance of Apocalyptic, pp. 79 f. To these may be added, R. H. Pfeiffer, History of New Testament Times, 1949, where chapters vi-xxxvi are assigned to circa 100 B.C., and the Apocalypse of Weeks to circa 163 B.C. 30 Cf. The Book of Enoch, 2nd ed., pp. liii f., and Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, ii, p. 171. 31 Loc. cit., col. 367. 32 Cf. The Relevance of the Apocalyptic, 2nd ed., p. 56. 33 Cf. The Book of Enoch, 2nd ed., p. liv, and Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, ii, p. 171. 34 Cf.
The Book of Enoch, p. liii, and Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, loc. cit. 35 Loc. cit., cols. 361 f. 36 Ibid., col. 364 37 Ibid., col. 368. 38 I Enoch x. 6, xvi. 1, xix. 1, xxv. 4 f. 39 I Enoch xci. 7, 9, xcvii. 7 ff. 40 I Enoch xcix. 11, ciii. 3 f, 7 f., civ. 2 ff. H.H. Rowley, Jewish Apocalyptic and the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Ethel M. Wood Lecture delivered before the University of London on 12 March 1957. London: The Athlone Press, 1957. pp.36. no suggestion of the establishment of the kingdom of God on earth, or of any resurrection on earth. In chapters lxxxiii-xc the history of Israel is depicted symbolically under the figure of sheep. The history culminates in a Gentile attack, until one of the sheep develops a powerful horn, against which the enemy had no power.41 This is doubtless to be identified with the Maccabees,42 whose victory was expected to inaugurate the kingdom of God, when the enemy should be destroyed, and the righteous dead should arise. One described as a white bull should lead them,43 and he fulfils the functions of the Messiah, though the term is not used of him, and there is no mention of Davidic descent. The Similitudes of Enoch raise problems of Christian [p.10] interpolation and of the interpretation of their figure of the Son of Man. In the book of Daniel the Son of Man is a figure symbolizing the saints as invested with power in the coming kingdom,44 and [B]there are some who think the Son of Man is here also a collective symbol.45 Others hold that he is a transcendental figure, a pre-existent individual.
46 For our purpose this is not material, since nothing of this character can be found in the Scrolls. The term Anointed One, or Messiah, is found in the Similitudes,47 but there is nothing to indicate that he is a human deliverer, and again the view has been expressed that this is a collective figure.48




Dating The Dead Sea Scrolls

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dead_Sea_Scrolls

Scholarly consensus dates the Qumran Caves Scrolls from the last three centuries*BCE*and the first century*CE.[2]*Bronze coins found at the same sites form a series beginning with*John Hyrcanus*(in office 135–104*BCE) and continuing until the period of the*First Jewish–Roman War*(66–73 CE), supporting the radiocarbon and*paleographic*dating of the*scrolls.[5]


Radiocarbon dating
Main article:*Carbon dating the Dead Sea Scrolls


Parchment from a number of the Dead Sea Scrolls has been carbon dated. The initial test performed in 1950 was on a piece of linen from one of the caves. This test gave an indicative dating of 33CE plus or minus 200 years, eliminating early hypotheses relating the scrolls to the medieval period.[433] Since then two large series of tests have been performed on the scrolls themselves. The results were summarized by VanderKam and Flint, who said the tests give "strong reason for thinking that most of the Qumran manuscripts belong to the last two centuries BCE and the first century CE."[17]:32

Paleographic dating[edit]

Analysis of letter forms, or*palaeography, was applied to the texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls by a variety of scholars in the field. Major linguistic analysis by*Cross*and*Avigad*dates fragments from 225*BCE to 50*CE.[434]*These dates were determined by examining the size, variability, and style of the text.[435]The same fragments were later analyzed using radiocarbon dating and were dated to an estimated range of 385*BCE to 82*CE with a 68% accuracy rate.[434] “

Because of their faithfulness, we have today a form of the Hebrew text which in all essentials duplicates the recension which was considered authoritative in the days of Christ and the apostles, if not a century earlier. And this in turn, judging from Qumran evidence, goes back to an authoritative revision of the Old Testament text which was drawn up on the basis of the most reliable manuscripts available for collation from previous centuries. These bring us very close in all essentials to the original autographs themselves, and furnish us with an authentic record of God's revelation. As W. F. Albright has said, "We may rest assured that the consonantal text of the Hebrew Bible, though not infallible has been preserved with an accuracy perhaps unparalleled in any other Near Eastern literature."[504]

Christian origin theory[edit]

Spanish*Jesuit*José O'Callaghan Martínez*argued in the 1960s that one fragment (7Q5) preserves a portion of text from the*New Testament*Gospel of Mark*6:52–53.[424]*This theory was*falsifiedin the year 2000 by paleographic analysis of the particular fragment.[425]

Robert Eisenman*has advanced the theory that some scrolls describe the*early Christian*community. Eisenman also argued that the careers of*James the Just*and*Paul the Apostle*correspond to events recorded in some of these documents.[426]




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4Q246

4Q246, also known as the*Son of God*Text or the*Aramaic Apocalypse, is one of the*Dead Sea Scrolls*found at*Qumran*which is notable for an early*messianic*mention of a*son of God.[1][2]*The text is an*Aramaic language*fragment first acquired in 1958 from cave 4 at Qumran, and the major debate on this fragment has been on the identity of this "son of God" figure.[3]



https://www.nationalgeographic.com/n...ad-sea-scroll-

translated-religion-tekufah-spd/
The Mystery of the Scrolls


As religious documents, a wave of controversy surrounds the Dead Sea Scrolls. They were written between the second century BC and the second century AD, but their exact authors are highly contested. Scholars agree, however, that the documents—which consist of explanatory, wisdom, apocalyptic, and calendrical texts, in addition to hymns and prayers—were written by Judean desert dwellers.



https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/...new-testament/

Nevertheless, there are some similarities between the two groups and their writings, which make for interesting comparisons. For example, a list of miracles appears in both Luke 7:21–22 of the New Testament and the Dead Sea Scroll known as the Messianic Apocalypse (4Q521).

In Luke 7, Jesus gives these miracles to the disciples of John the Baptist as proof that he is the messiah. In the Messianic Apocalypse, which was written approximately 150 years before Luke’s Gospel, the Lord is the one who will perform these miracles. The source for both of these lists is Isaiah chapters 35 and 61. While not all of the same miracles appear in Luke 7 and the Messianic Apocalypse, the miracles that do appear in both are listed in the same order (see char

The curious thing is that not all of these miracles, such as “raising the dead,” appear in the passages from Isaiah, which were the source material for the lists—the prophecies being fulfilled. Yet the miracle of “raising the dead” appears in both Luke 7 and the Messianic Apocalypse*right before*bringing “good news to the poor.” Rather than suggesting that the writer of Luke 7 copied from—or was even aware of—the Messianic Apocalypse, this similarity suggests that both groups shared certain “interpretive and theological traditions on which writers in both communities drew.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 08:49 AM   #382
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Also – re. my previous post on the Dead Sea Scrolls as a quite obvious source from which Paul & the members of the Church of God at Jerusalem (see Paul's letter for all that) could easily have been forming a religious belief around the idea of a spiritual messiah of the distant past (up to 250 years before Paul), ie an Apocalyptic Messiah belief which afaik everyone agrees that Paul was preaching - below are some links and quotes on the Dead Sea Scrolls where the Scrolls certainly do talk about their belief in an apocalyptic messiah.
They could've, and it's certainly a possibility that's been raised in the past. However if I remember correctly it requires that said Messiah essentially start as mythical, then be made human (in Mark) and then back to godlike again. Under that scenario I still find it more likely if we cut out the first part and simplify it, Occam and all.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 09:04 AM   #383
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Also – re. my previous post on the Dead Sea Scrolls as a quite obvious source from which Paul & the members of the Church of God at Jerusalem (see Paul's letter for all that) could easily have been forming a religious belief around the idea of a spiritual messiah of the distant past (up to 250 years before Paul), ie an Apocalyptic Messiah belief which afaik everyone agrees that Paul was preaching - below are some links and quotes on the Dead Sea Scrolls where the Scrolls certainly do talk about their belief in an apocalyptic messiah.

But just to recap what I said in that previous post - Afaik, everyone agrees that Paul was preaching an apocalyptic message of messiah belief. Afaik, there are no dissenting voices on that. However, what the quotes below show, is that the Dead Sea Scrolls were also preaching an apocalyptic messiah. But note that the Scrolls were written as much as 250 years or more before Paul was even born ... although experts all agree that those Scrolls continued to be written all through the lifetime of Paul and up until about 100AD (see the dating links & quotes below) ... and the writers of those scrolls were preaching and writing in the exact same few square-miles as Paul ...
Hold on, are you under the impression that only the Essenes (and later Paul, who you claim drew inspiration from them) were preaching apocalyptic messages and included discussion about a messiah? Or even more generally, do you think the idea of a group predicting the messiah (or making claims about one) was rare during the second temple period?

It looks like your claim is that because the Dead Sea Scrolls contain apocalyptic messages then early Christians must have been inspired to turn their writings into a new religion, and if that's the case, wow, you know even less about the history of this period than I thought. The entire second temple period was full of apocalyptic preaching and predictions/claims about the messiah. That's one of the defining traits of the period, historically. Apocalyptic writing was incredibly widespread and popular through the entire period, and by the first century it was pretty mainstream. There were also lots of people claiming to be the messiah (or predicting his near arrival), including Simon Bar Kokhbah, John the Baptist, and several the Josephus mentions. That's one of the reasons Brainache was able to claim earlier in the thread that the existence of a person like Jesus isn't a fantastic claim - we already know of many other people like him (unless you want to claim they didn't exist, either), so his existence fits very well with what was a popular movement, and what we know about others like him. Is it possible that Jesus still could have been an invention? Yes, but it wasn't necessary, it's not like apocalyptic preachers with small followings that were killed by the authorities were uncommon. He isn't even the only Jesus of that description mentioned by Josephus. As others have said, it really comes down to what you consider valid criteria for a historical Jesus. But the DSS aren't some kind of smoking gun in the way you seem to be presenting them, the Essenes' messianic writings were part of a broader cultural movement that was incredibly widespread at the time - just like your last highlighted quote says.

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Old 22nd August 2019, 12:54 PM   #384
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
He isn't even the only Jesus of that description mentioned by Josephus.
Since I just realized I was wrong about this, and can't edit the post anymore, I wanted to correct myself on this point. I was misremembering Josephus (it's been years since I've read these sources or had to think about the topic); he mentions many different Jesuses (Jesi?) and several apocalyptically-inspired Jewish rebels, but the famous Jesus is the only that meets both of those criteria. My larger points still stand (and so do Brainache's about how IanS is getting the DSS wrong), but that was a big enough mistake to warrant correction. My bad.

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Old 22nd August 2019, 05:53 PM   #385
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Hold on, are you under the impression that only the Essenes (and later Paul, who you claim drew inspiration from them) were preaching apocalyptic messages and included discussion about a messiah? Or even more generally, do you think the idea of a group predicting the messiah (or making claims about one) was rare during the second temple period?

It looks like your claim is that because the Dead Sea Scrolls contain apocalyptic messages then early Christians must have been inspired to turn their writings into a new religion, and if that's the case, wow, you know even less about the history of this period than I thought. The entire second temple period was full of apocalyptic preaching and predictions/claims about the messiah. That's one of the defining traits of the period, historically. Apocalyptic writing was incredibly widespread and popular through the entire period, and by the first century it was pretty mainstream. There were also lots of people claiming to be the messiah (or predicting his near arrival), including Simon Bar Kokhbah, John the Baptist, and several the Josephus mentions. That's one of the reasons Brainache was able to claim earlier in the thread that the existence of a person like Jesus isn't a fantastic claim - we already know of many other people like him (unless you want to claim they didn't exist, either), so his existence fits very well with what was a popular movement, and what we know about others like him. Is it possible that Jesus still could have been an invention? Yes, but it wasn't necessary, it's not like apocalyptic preachers with small followings that were killed by the authorities were uncommon. He isn't even the only Jesus of that description mentioned by Josephus. As others have said, it really comes down to what you consider valid criteria for a historical Jesus. But the DSS aren't some kind of smoking gun in the way you seem to be presenting them, the Essenes' messianic writings were part of a broader cultural movement that was incredibly widespread at the time - just like your last highlighted quote says.
Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Since I just realized I was wrong about this, and can't edit the post anymore, I wanted to correct myself on this point. I was misremembering Josephus (it's been years since I've read these sources or had to think about the topic); he mentions many different Jesuses (Jesi?) and several apocalyptically-inspired Jewish rebels, but the famous Jesus is the only that meets both of those criteria. My larger points still stand (and so do Brainache's about how IanS is getting the DSS wrong), but that was a big enough mistake to warrant correction. My bad.
Thanks for that.

We could probably get into Josephus and his description of Judas the Galilean and his "Fourth Philosophy", the various "Innovators" and the "Zealots" who led the revolt against Rome that resulted in the destruction of the Temple. We could, but what would be the point if after debating this topic for years, some posters still know nothing about the historical context.

Good luck turning it around.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 06:12 PM   #386
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Since I just realized I was wrong about this, and can't edit the post anymore, I wanted to correct myself on this point. I was misremembering Josephus (it's been years since I've read these sources or had to think about the topic); he mentions many different Jesuses (Jesi?) and several apocalyptically-inspired Jewish rebels, but the famous Jesus is the only that meets both of those criteria. My larger points still stand (and so do Brainache's about how IanS is getting the DSS wrong), but that was a big enough mistake to warrant correction. My bad.
You were right the first time. In "The Jewish Wars", he describes a guy called "Jesus Son Of Ananias", also sometimes "Jesus Of Jerusalem". And the name and general "coming Jewish Apocalypse" style are not the only things they have in common. This guy also:
•entered the city during a Jewish festival
•went to the temple to rant against it while quoting Jeremiah 7
•stuck around afterward to preach daily about the coming destruction there
•was seized & beaten by Jewish authorities who accused him of speaking against the temple
•offered no defense
•was turned over to the Romans, who beat him some more
•was interrogated personally by the Roman governor
•still offered no defense there either
•was not found guilty of anything or a threat by the governor, who decided he should be set free
•cried out about his own sad fate just before dying

(Bible Jesus ended up not being freed after all thanks to a plot contrivance, of course, but this one was. Then he died not by execution but in a siege, with final quote that's not the same words but the same theme.)

That was published in 68, and the events happened in the 60s. That's before the Gospels, but after Paul's letters... and the parallels are with the Gospels (especially Mark), not with Paul's letters. If there's a single specific individual who can be fairly called the real-world basis for the Bible's Jesus, I'd say it's this one, not Paul's vague demigod of vagueness.

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Old 22nd August 2019, 06:16 PM   #387
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
You were right the first time. In "The Jewish Wars", he describes a guy called "Jesus Son Of Ananias", also sometimes "Jesus Of Jerusalem". And the name and general "coming Jewish Apocalypse" style are not the only things they have in common.
Darn, I was thinking of the wrong Jesus when I tried fact-checking myself (Jesus son of Damneus). Sometimes it's hard keeping them all straight, but it's good to know I wasn't completely misremembering Josephus. Thanks for the correction.

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Old 23rd August 2019, 02:35 AM   #388
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Well you did to me. I even quoted the exact bit that led to that.



First, it wasn't a claim. You really should read more carefully. Second, what's silly about it? It happens all the time, in history, in fiction and myth, etc. That's why I said you don't appear to know much about the topic.



I defined what 'historical Jesus' means to me and what would qualify. I suggested that it might be more than one person. What is it about that that indicates that I know who they are?

Are you done misrepresenting my posts? It's not going to make you any more right, and it shows a lot of irony, after what you said about me earlier.



Again, I've done so multiple times in previous threads in which you participated. Said evidence did not convince you then and I have no delusion that it will convince you now. I did touch upon a couple of reasons earlier. I suggest you look back and read what I post.



That's not what I said.



I was discussing with Archie about a particular aspect, and one of the things that makes me lean in that direction. I don't see why you'd expect that to be anything else.



I am not at your beck and call, and I've stated numerous times what I mean to discuss in this thread. The evidence for the historical Jesus is not part of that. You might as well ask me to debunk the Shroud of Turin; it's just as relevant to the topic, and just as irrelevant to what I am discussing.


What is the evidence which you say convinces you that Jesus was probably real?

Where is your evidence?

Why you can't you tell us what you are claiming as the evidence of a real Jesus?

It does not matter whether I personally find what you offer (as evidence) convincing. For a start I am not the only person here who is arguing against you. You need to be straight with everyone here, and explain what you are using as your evidence - if you are arguing that certain evidence convinces you that Jesus was probably real, then the burden is entirely upon you to explain what you are claiming as that evidence.

If you cannot or will not produce that evidence, then you have absolutely no case here at all.

And secondly - whilst I'm not expecting to be convinced by what you offer as evidence (though I might be convinced. It depends what that evidence is), I want to see if you have any cogent enlightening point to make from whatever material that is influencing you as evidence of Jesus.

And thirdly - I really have no idea what you ever claimed as evidence in previous threads from years ago. What I recall from those threads was various other posters (some of them still here) offering mainly that one line from Paul (which has numerous problems with it, as I've explained in great detail many times), and particularly on this forum/site they offered Josephus and Tacitus as their main evidence.

So .... the evidence? Do you actually have any at all?

Why can't you just tell us? What is so hard about doing that?
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Old 23rd August 2019, 02:41 AM   #389
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Why you can't you tell us what you are claiming as the evidence of a real Jesus?
I can, just like I can tell you why the Shroud of Turin, which would definitely be on-topic, is a sham. But that is not what I'm discussing. I'm discussing what constitutes expertise on the matter.

I don't know why that is so hard for you to understand.
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Old 23rd August 2019, 02:53 AM   #390
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By the way, just so people can see it and judge it for themselves – here is the film I described earlier of Bart Ehrman giving a book reading of what was then his newly published Book “Did Jesus Exist” -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HRDqTh4y46c


What anyone should notice there is just how weak Ehrman's explanations and arguments are, and how it takes him 23 mins out of his allotted time of 26 mins before he finally gets around to telling that audience what he is claiming as the evidence of Jesus which he again repeats there as a "certainty" (ie he spent 88% of his allotted time just complaining about all the weakest points that various mythicists had raised in the past). And when he finally does get to his evidence he just says Paul had met the actual brother of Jesus, and he adds for effect “you would think his own brother would know if Jesus was real”, and then he lamely says "there is one other piece of evidence but it's too complicated for me to explain it here"! And that's it! …

… that is the sum total of what he explains as his evidence. And that's in a book where he has just told the audience that his book is all about the entire explanation of all the evidence that shows Jesus was “certainly real”.

And to repeat, lest the pro-HJ posters here fail again to recognise the most important factors in this subject – Bart Ehrman is by far the most prominent well known “expert” academic, by far the most published on this precise topic of Historicity of Jesus, and he is by far the one named “Historian” (he's he's actually NOT a historian, he is a Bible Studies lecturer in a Bible Studies Dep't) who all pro-HJ posters everywhere on the internet quote almost to the exclusion of any other credible named “expert” on this subject … but you can see in that film just how dreadfully weak the standard of academia is in this field even with it's most notable and most respected members such as Bart Ehrman.

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Old 23rd August 2019, 03:22 AM   #391
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
By the way, just so people can see it and judge it for themselves – here is the film I described earlier of Bart Ehrman giving a book reading of what was then his newly published Book “Did Jesus Exist” -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HRDqTh4y46c


What anyone should notice there is just how weak Ehrman's explanations and arguments are, and how it takes him 23 mins out of his allotted time of 26 mins before he finally gets around to telling that audience what he is claiming as the evidence of Jesus which he again repeats there as a "certainty" (ie he spent 88% of his allotted time just complaining about all the weakest points that various mythicists had raised in the past). And when he finally does get to his evidence he just says Paul had met the actual brother of Jesus, and he adds for effect “you would think his own brother would know if Jesus was real”, and then he lamely says "there is one other piece of evidence but it's too complicated for me to explain it here"! And that's it! …

… that is the sum total of what he explains as his evidence. And that's in a book where he has just told the audience that his book is all about the entire explanation of all the evidence that shows Jesus was “certainly real”.

And to repeat, lest the pro-HJ posters here fail again to recognise the most important factors in this subject – Bart Ehrman is by far the most prominent well known “expert” academic, by far the most published on this precise topic of Historicity of Jesus, and he is by far the one named “Historian” (he's he's actually NOT a historian, he is a Bible Studies lecturer in a Bible Studies Dep't) who all pro-HJ posters everywhere on the internet quote almost to the exclusion of any other credible named “expert” on this subject … but you can see in that film just how dreadfully weak the standard of academia is in this field even with it's most notable and most respected members such as Bart Ehrman.
In this thread, who has mentioned Bart Erhman?

Tell us more about the Dead Sea Scrolls...

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Old 23rd August 2019, 04:03 AM   #392
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May I suggest that prior to posting further on this topic participants read the threads started by Doc .

We can then pick this up again when you have done that which should be about 2022.

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Old 23rd August 2019, 04:06 AM   #393
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Your link is a search. It only works for you.
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Old 23rd August 2019, 05:39 AM   #394
IanS
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Hold on, are you under the impression that only the Essenes (and later Paul, who you claim drew inspiration from them) were preaching apocalyptic messages and included discussion about a messiah? Or even more generally, do you think the idea of a group predicting the messiah (or making claims about one) was rare during the second temple period?

It looks like your claim is that because the Dead Sea Scrolls contain apocalyptic messages then early Christians must have been inspired to turn their writings into a new religion, and if that's the case, wow, you know even less about the history of this period than I thought. The entire second temple period was full of apocalyptic preaching and predictions/claims about the messiah. That's one of the defining traits of the period, historically. Apocalyptic writing was incredibly widespread and popular through the entire period, and by the first century it was pretty mainstream. There were also lots of people claiming to be the messiah (or predicting his near arrival), including Simon Bar Kokhbah, John the Baptist, and several the Josephus mentions. That's one of the reasons Brainache was able to claim earlier in the thread that the existence of a person like Jesus isn't a fantastic claim - we already know of many other people like him (unless you want to claim they didn't exist, either), so his existence fits very well with what was a popular movement, and what we know about others like him. Is it possible that Jesus still could have been an invention? Yes, but it wasn't necessary, it's not like apocalyptic preachers with small followings that were killed by the authorities were uncommon. He isn't even the only Jesus of that description mentioned by Josephus. As others have said, it really comes down to what you consider valid criteria for a historical Jesus. But the DSS aren't some kind of smoking gun in the way you seem to be presenting them, the Essenes' messianic writings were part of a broader cultural movement that was incredibly widespread at the time - just like your last highlighted quote says.


Dear oh lord! Please read what people have said in their posts before you make dismissive and disparaging criticism of them. You are actually making my case for me! …

… you are saying above "The entire second temple period was full of apocalyptic preaching and predictions/claims about the messiah.", that's going further than I did, where you are now claiming to personally know that as a certainty, which is always a very unwise claim to make. Whereas as I had said exactly the same thing, but gone no further than to say that in his book on the Dead Sea Scroll's, Stephen Hodge says that by at least 100BC (i.e. 100 to 150 years before Paul's converting vision) “preaching in that region had become very diverse, with people now preaching various versions of an apocalyptically religious messiah, as opposed to the earlier traditional Jewish belief in a princely leader taking the Jewish people to a great military victory ” … below is the entire quote of my post with precisely that sentence highlighted for you -


Originally Posted by IanS View Post

But as a direct result of that vision, Paul instantly changed his traditionalist messiah belief (promised since at least 500BC in the Old Testament) to belief in an apocalyptic messenger sent by God to gather the faithful in warning of God's now imminent day of the apocalypse.

However, that apocalyptic messiah belief was in fact the same belief found in the the Dead Sea Scrolls when they were discovered in that exact same region between 1946 to 1956. Those Scrolls are most often dated to have been written as an ongoing enterprise from about 200BC through to about 100AD.

If you read the book by Stephen Hodge (The Dead Sea Scrolls), he explains that by at least 100BC (if not earlier) preaching in that region had become very diverse, with people now preaching various versions of an apocalyptically religious messiah, as opposed to the earlier traditional Jewish belief in a princely leader taking the Jewish people to a great military victory.

IOW – Paul came to believe, from his vision, that people like the Essenes (who wrote the Scrolls) had been right in their interpretation of the promised messiah … Paul then began preaching exactly that same sort of apocalyptic view of a religious messiah.

So that, in brief, is a fairly clear explanation of how and why Paul was actually preaching about a spirituall Christ, and not a real living person.

.

The essential point is (in case you've missed that too), that in his letters Paul makes explicitly clear that before his vision he had been preaching a much more traditional form of Judaism, where he was on the streets vehemently opposing others who were now preaching an apocalyptical belief in the promised messiah … Paul then says he had that converting vision, after which he instantly came to believe that a message he describes as “hidden so long” in scripture, actually did mean that Jesus was an apocalyptic messenger of the past, sent by God to warn the faithful of the imminent day of final judgement, and in that belief he says he then joined with the beliefs of the people he called the “pillars” of the Church of God in Jerusalem …. i.e. he came to share the same general belief in OT prophecy of an apocalyptical messiah …

… that was something I explained in that above quoted post 301 for the benefit of Belz and others here who had said they could not conceive of how Christianity could have ever begun unless there was some real person, i.e. Jesus, as it's founder/source/figurehead …

… well what my above description shows is how, by the time of Paul in 30AD, it would have been very easy indeed for Paul and others such as the “Pillars of The Church of God”, to have believed in a messiah who was never known to any of them as any sort of real living person, but who was only ever a figment of their religious belief where Paul and all the others had only known “the Christ” through their religious visions which they believed to be revelations from God …

… they, i.e. Paul and the Pillars of the Church, may have believed that this visionary messiah had indeed been alive upon the Earth a hundred years or more earlier when the Scrolls were first being written, but by the time Paul came to believe in the revealed truth of his vision, that messiah was no longer in living existence (if indeed he ever was), i.e. the believed messiah was by then (i.e. by circa 33-37 with Paul's vision) only a figure of visionary belief.
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Old 23rd August 2019, 07:09 AM   #395
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Originally Posted by Archie Gemmill Goal View Post
They could have. But how do we know whether they added miraculous stuff to a real person or just made up the whole thing?

There is a danger that you just strip away the things that are obviously false and then assume that what is left which is plausible is true.

But that approach could leave us with a historical Peter Parker who just couldn't climb buildings too.
The supporters of the historical Jesus adduce quite a few reasons of little weight. The strongest indications (or less weak, depending on how you look at it) would be the mentions of a Jesus of flesh and blood in the Pauline Epistles and the difficulty that a Jesus who died an infamous death was invented by the Christians at the end of the first century.

They are not evidences, in a strict sense.I don't think there's another one worth mentioning.
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Old 23rd August 2019, 08:48 AM   #396
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Dear oh lord! Please read what people have said in their posts before you make dismissive and disparaging criticism of them.
I did. You're keep trying to make the claim that the messianic figure in the DSS is tied to Paul's notion of Jesus (which is wrong, BTW, as Brainache has pointed out, and you keep ignoring), and because it's the only example you keep using, it really makes it seem like you think it was Paul's direct inspiration. Nothing you've said in this post even tries to argue against that (or even meaningfully addresses anything I said - as I noted before, you just keep repeating to same things over and over and acting like it somehow proves you're right), so I'm still assuming it's what you think. Either way, it demonstrates a lack of understanding of the subject.

Originally Posted by IanS View Post
You are actually making my case for me! …
I'm really not. And I'm struggling to see why you do (besides Dunning-Kruger). Just like in your last post, your source just backs up what I'm saying, and has nothing to do with what you appear to be claiming. You keep showing that you refuse to engage with meaningful criticism, so I'm out again.

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Old 23rd August 2019, 11:15 AM   #397
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
I did. You're keep trying to make the claim that the messianic figure in the DSS is tied to Paul's notion of Jesus (which is wrong, BTW, as Brainache has pointed out, and you keep ignoring), and because it's the only example you keep using, it really makes it seem like you think it was Paul's direct inspiration. Nothing you've said in this post even tries to argue against that (or even meaningfully addresses anything I said - as I noted before, you just keep repeating to same things over and over and acting like it somehow proves you're right), so I'm still assuming it's what you think. Either way, it demonstrates a lack of understanding of the subject.



I'm really not. And I'm struggling to see why you do (besides Dunning-Kruger). Just like in your last post, your source just backs up what I'm saying, and has nothing to do with what you appear to be claiming. You keep showing that you refuse to engage with meaningful criticism, so I'm out again.

What do you mean in the above highlight by saying that I am trying to “tie” the view that Paul presented of the messiah after his vision, to the “messianic" figure in the DSS”?

I am not saying that Paul came to believe exactly what the Essene's (i.e. the claimed writers of the Scrolls) believed about messianic Judaism. I did not say that at all.

What I am saying is that the Dead Sea Scrolls describe a messiah belief that was apocalyptic in nature, and in post #385 I gave links & quotes which say exactly that. And I said that is exactly what Stephen Hodge says about the apocalyptic nature of the Scrolls in his book The Dead Sea Scrolls (it's the book that I cited for this earlier).

AFAIK, there is no disagreement about any of that – the Scrolls describe a messiah belief that was apocalyptic in nature.

What I am saying about Paul is that in his letters he actually stresses that prior to his vision he was preaching a more traditional form of Jewish belief, that was different from what he came to believe following his converting vision. The vision convinced Paul that his traditional Jewish view of the messiah was wrong (in fact in his letters he makes a very clear & abject apology to people for preaching that wrong view of the messiah), and that God had now revealed to Paul that the true meaning of “Scripture” was that the messiah had already been upon the Earth in the untold past (Paul never says how long ago he thought that was).

And from that moment onwards Paul preached that the messiah message was to show the faithful that just like “the Christ”, they too (i.e. all faithful believers) would be raised up after death by God when he (Paul) says in 1 Corinthians 15 for example “Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom*to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power.*25*For he must reign*until he has put all his enemies under his feet.*26*The last enemy to be destroyed is death” . That is afaik, agreed by all Bible Scholars (ie “expert historians”) to be a clearly apocalyptic messiah belief.

In other words - following his vision, Paul's view of the messiah was apparently very similar to that of the “Pillars of the Church of God” who had been preaching before Paul, and similar also in that sense of the apocalyptic message, to the apocalyptic messianic beliefs found in the Sea Sea Scrolls.

What I am saying about the significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls is that their description of an apocalyptic messiah was apparently being written at least 100 years before or even 200 years or more before Paul was even born.

So that by the time Paul was preaching his more traditional Judaic messiah beliefs around circa 20AD to 30AD, the Essenes (or whoever it was that wrote the Scrolls) had already been in that exact same small region around Judea peaching belief in an apocalyptic messiah, and where in his book Hodge says that by about 100BC to 50BC there were many people in that region preaching various diverse beliefs about the promised messiah, inc. the belief that the messiah would be an apocalyptic messenger warning the faithful to be ready for Gods final day of judgement … which is apparently exactly what Paul came to believe from his vision that was said to have occurred about 33 to 37 AD.

That's what I am suggesting as one quite obvious way in which Paul and the others (e.g. the “Pillars” John, Peter and James … plus according to Paul, also “the Twelve, all the Apostles, and 500 others at once”) could have come to believe in a messiah of the distant past (e.g. from 100BC or earlier) who was by Paul's time no longer a living person (if indeed any such apocalyptic messiah, such as that of the Essenes, was ever a real person).

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