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Old 27th May 2020, 10:23 PM   #1521
dejudge
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The so-called HJ is really an assumed character reproduced from the orifices of NT authors.

There are those who claim "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence" and that "one cannot prove a negative."

They imply that evidence is required for existence and that "one can prove a positive".

Well, what is the evidence for an HJ or what is the proof of his existence??

All we get is amnesia or dishonesty!!!

Those who argue for an HJ have no evidence and cannot prove an HJ lived or probably existed.

All they have done is to rely on the orifices of NT authors and apologetic writers.
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Old 27th May 2020, 11:37 PM   #1522
IanS
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Whoops ... Correction - in my post 1516, that very first line should say "of course it would NOT make me dissapear ...."
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Old 27th May 2020, 11:45 PM   #1523
IanS
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Dejudge. If it is in the bible it is false by default. That is what he said.

oesn't magically produce some GAAAAWWWWWDDDDD, does it?

I have not noticed Dejudge saying that. I think he was talking about people who are mentioned in the bible and what they are claimed to have done. I don't recall Dejudge or anyone else saying that Jerusalem did not exist because it was mentioned in the bible.

Perhaps you can quote Dejudges post where says that Jerusalem was mentioned in the bible and that means Jerusalem therefore cannot exist?
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Old 27th May 2020, 11:47 PM   #1524
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
I know that. You know that. Look, I lived through the 1985 summer of moving statues of holy mary. It was remarkable how people deluded themselves. En mass. I was 17 at that time, already an atheist and still living at home with two parents who were devout catholics. Even they were aghast at the way a mass delusion grew legs. News crews would record it and show people afterward that the statue din't move at all. Did that change the believers minds? Did that make them rethink? No, they dug in their heels.

So, yes, you are correct. Mass delusion is an odd thing, but a very real thing. You only have to see it once to know that.

If you want to see this in action, ten minutes of this insanity

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZjM83wZmWw
Interesting. I wasn't aware of that particular "miracle" - but it doesn't take much to convince those who want to believe.
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:06 AM   #1525
Roger Ramjets
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
That is only part of the story.

In the NT it is claimed that thousands of Jews were converted sometimes as much as 5000 in a day.
A lot of things are claimed in the NT, many of which are obviously not true. But that doesn't mean a Historical Jesus didn't exist.

Quote:
In the NT, after the Jews killed or caused the death of Jesus thousands of them repented of their sins and became believers.
And in the US in 2017, according to official records more people attended Trump's inauguration than Obama's! Just because the numbers were inflated doesn't mean it didn't happen.

Quote:
There is no back story in the NT about Jesus. The NT is all fiction with respect to Jesus, the disciples and Paul with the Epistles being the last writings- not the first.
Can't you read? Back stories are typically given to fictional characters. The NT does give Jesus a backstory. That doesn't mean he must have existed - on the contrary a suspiciously convenient backstory could be an indication that the character is fictitious.

By rejecting the backstory, you are weakening your own argument!

Quote:
I have never argued that Jesus was initially just a man.

Please, I am arguing that Jesus, the disciples and Paul never ever existed and that their stories are fiction.
Yes, I know. But just 'arguing' (ie. asserting without evidence) is not enough. You have to prove your theory. Repeating the same claim ad nauseam won't do it.

You see, it's possible that despite the obvious fictions in the NT and lack of corroboration from outside sources, Christianity could have been started by a Jew whose name was Jesus - even if nothing said about him in the NT is accurate. For a modern parallel, just look at what Trump's supporters say about him. Then imagine they wrote a book about him - it would be filled to the brim with fiction, but Trump is a historical person.

Your problem is you have identified that the Jesus described in the Bible could not have existed (which is obvious), but you have not shown that a man called Jesus could not have started the religious movement that became Christianity. That is what most people think of when we say 'a historical Jesus' - not a water-walking, transfiguring, resurrecting being - a man.

Quote:
The earliest version of the Jesus depicts him as a water-walking, transfiguring, resurrecting being. Such a being is not human. Later writers added more fiction claiming that he was God's own Son, the Creator and was born of a Ghost before he ascended to heaven.
The 'earliest' depiction of Jesus in the Bible is of a man who claimed he was was God's son and did some magic tricks. Later in the story he was put to death, then purportedly resurrected shortly before ascending to heaven - never to be seen again.

If you read that story through the eyes of his followers, it's not much different from what Trump's followers might tell you about him (even including being 'chosen by God'). But Trump is a historical figure. Even if all other records of his existence were destroyed and the only writings left were those of his most fervent 'believers', it still wouldn't prove that he didn't exist.

Quote:
You cannot present any historical evidence that another man was resurrected after being dead for at least four days.
Obviously, and I wouldn't attempt to. But this is irrelevant. Even the most accurate biographies of real people contain errors and 'facts' that could be disputed. How inaccurate does it have to be before we decide that it was not based on an actual person? You may arbitrarily decide that there is no 'there' there, but others don't have to agree. While there is still a possibility that there was a real man behind the stories, you can't justify dismissing it outright. You need to prove that a real person could not have been behind it - even if every part of it is full of distortions, exaggerations and inventions. Otherwise it's no different from claiming Trump doesn't exist based on what his followers say about him.

Quote:
Are you arguing that obvious lies and inventions are evidence that Jesus existed?
Oh dear. You are the one arguing that obvious lies and inventions are evidence that Jesus did not exist. You need to back up that claim with more than just 'because the Bible contains obvious lies and inventions'.
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:14 AM   #1526
Tassman
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
The so-called HJ is really an assumed character reproduced from the orifices of NT authors.

There are those who claim "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence" and that "one cannot prove a negative."

They imply that evidence is required for existence and that "one can prove a positive".

Well, what is the evidence for an HJ or what is the proof of his existence??

All we get is amnesia or dishonesty!!!

Those who argue for an HJ have no evidence and cannot prove an HJ lived or probably existed.

All they have done is to rely on the orifices of NT authors and apologetic writers.
Your blanket dismissal of any sort of historical figure is I think a problem. I don't think there are many here (including myself) who argue for the miracle-working bodily-resurrected Jesus - if for no other reason that its a highly improbable story. And there are NO original texts. And there is abundant evidence that the texts of the gospels represent evolved edited texts, without known authors. This true for several of the letters too

But this is a different issue from saying that some sort of deranged fanatical preacher (they were a dime a dozen back then) never existed - someone who managed to strike the right chord with a group of illiterate fisherman. And who ultimately featured in an apparent revelatory encounter on the Damascus road with a delusional but well educated pharisee named Paul, who henceforth promoted Jesus with the persuasive vigor that only a convert can muster.
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Old 28th May 2020, 01:20 AM   #1527
Ulf Nereng
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Originally Posted by Kapyong View Post
The same ridiculous ******** claim, willfully repeated, over and over - no matter how many times it is shown to be false.

No-one here made that claim, and Delvo must be aware of it.

This troll is a waste of time
Erm... I keep reading dejudge as claiming precisely that. But perhaps I'm reading his posts the wrong way...

To clarify my opinion: The fact that the gospel writers were constantly making up BS means that they are totally unreliable as evidence for the existence of Jesus. But that doesn't mean that they are evidence against the existence of Jesus, either.

BS is BS; nothing can be learned from it, except perhaps something about the psychology of the BS'er. BS'ers do occasionally say things that are true, though. Even the greatest BS'er of our times (DJT) is rumored to have said ten true things. There's a topic about that in another part of the forum!

Last edited by Ulf Nereng; 28th May 2020 at 01:22 AM.
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Old 28th May 2020, 02:44 AM   #1528
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Originally Posted by Tassman View Post
Your blanket dismissal of any sort of historical figure is I think a problem. I don't think there are many here (including myself) who argue for the miracle-working bodily-resurrected Jesus - if for no other reason that its a highly improbable story. And there are NO original texts. And there is abundant evidence that the texts of the gospels represent evolved edited texts, without known authors. This true for several of the letters too



But this is a different issue from saying that some sort of deranged fanatical preacher (they were a dime a dozen back then) never existed - someone who managed to strike the right chord with a group of illiterate fisherman. And who ultimately featured in an apparent revelatory encounter on the Damascus road with a delusional but well educated pharisee named Paul, who henceforth promoted Jesus with the persuasive vigor that only a convert can muster.
But he doesn't make such a blanket dismissal, it's a subtle difference but what he makes a blanket dismissal of is the so called historical evidence for a person called Jesus who started Christianity.

There is nothing outside the texts of those that believe in a god called Jesus that evidences that he ever existed, just like there is no evidence Zeus existed or indeed the gods described in the old testament.

Indeed that is probably the best example to use, if one thinks it is likely or 50/50 that Jesus existed why not also hold the same view about the old testament god that the Christians claim is the same god as Jesus? After all there is just as much actual historical evidence that he was a real person.

It is simply that our cultures in what are or at least were originally "Christian" countries that make us prone to the idea that Jesus "probably" was a "real" person, it is a baked in assumption. Step beyond that presumption and you see he was no more likely to have been a real person than as I said Zeus, Apollo, Vishnu or Xemu.
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Old 28th May 2020, 06:31 AM   #1529
dejudge
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[quote=dejudge]
The so-called HJ is really an assumed character reproduced from the orifices of NT authors.

Originally Posted by dejudge
There are those who claim "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence" and that "one cannot prove a negative."

They imply that evidence is required for existence and that "one can prove a positive".

Well, what is the evidence for an HJ or what is the proof of his existence??

All we get is amnesia or dishonesty!!!

Those who argue for an HJ have no evidence and cannot prove an HJ lived or probably existed.

All they have done is to rely on the orifices of NT authors and apologetic writers.
Originally Posted by Tassman View Post
Your blanket dismissal of any sort of historical figure is I think a problem. I don't think there are many here (including myself) who argue for the miracle-working bodily-resurrected Jesus - if for no other reason that its a highly improbable story. And there are NO original texts. And there is abundant evidence that the texts of the gospels represent evolved edited texts, without known authors. This true for several of the letters too
Again, you spout amnesia or dishonesty.

While you admit the Jesus story is improbable you still dismiss the argument that NT Jesus did not exist.

Where is the evidence to show that an HJ probably existed?

It is in the orifices of the NT authors.

No NT author presented any historical evidence at all to support an HJ.

The author of gMatthew had an opportunity to correct the fiction in gMark about Jesus.

The author of gMatthew added more fiction instead.

The author of gLuke could have corrected the false claims about Jesus in gMark and gMatthew.

The author of gLuke advanced more fiction.

The author of gJohn changed the stories of the Synoptics but wrote total fiction claiming that Jesus was God Creator and from the beginning.

The author of Acts, a deceiver, falsely claimed in his story that there is infallible proof of the resurrection and ascension of Jesus.

Authors of the Epistles, multiple fraudster, claimed they saw the resurrected Jesus after he was dead for three days and that they were witnesses that God raised Jesus from the dead.

The NT is total fiction with regards to Jesus, the disciples and Paul.

You have no evidence at all, none whatsoever, to show that an HJ probably existed.

You cannot prove a positive with no evidence.
Originally Posted by Tassman View Post
But this is a different issue from saying that some sort of deranged fanatical preacher (they were a dime a dozen back then) never existed - someone who managed to strike the right chord with a group of illiterate fisherman. And who ultimately featured in an apparent revelatory encounter on the Damascus road with a delusional but well educated pharisee named Paul, who henceforth promoted Jesus with the persuasive vigor that only a convert can muster.
Again, you promote amnesia or dishonety!!

I am not arguing that no-one was called Jesus in antiquity or that there were no mad men mentioned in writings of antiquity.

Josephus mentioned multiple characters called Jesus.
Josephus and Philo mention mad-men.


None of them mentioned a character called Jesus of Nazareth who was worshiped as a God in the 1st century.

You can't prove that an HJ probably existed because all you have are the orifices of NT authors.

Last edited by dejudge; 28th May 2020 at 06:35 AM.
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Old 28th May 2020, 08:26 AM   #1530
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
That is only part of the story.

In the NT it is claimed that thousands of Jews were converted sometimes as much as 5000 in a day.

A lot of things are claimed in the NT, many of which are obviously not true. But that doesn't mean a Historical Jesus didn't exist.

It doesn't mean he could not have existed. It doesn't prove non-existence. But how many times do we have to find clearly untrue invented stories of Jesus in the NT before we can conclude that those writers almost certainly had never known any real Jesus, and that they were just writing or re-writing what had been stories and traditions of messiah prophecy that they had all known and been taught from far more ancient scripture?

How many untrue fictional accounts do we need to see before we can conclude that the gospels are far too unreliable to be valid as any sort of source of true witness information?

To make a believable case for a HJ, it really needs something vastly better than the gospels & letters of the NT ... but unfortunately there is no such other source. There is no reasonable or believable source at all.
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Old 28th May 2020, 09:16 AM   #1531
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IanS hits it square on here. There’s no contemporary sources where we might hope to see some, and once you get to the oldest sources we do have, there is a lot of support for the idea that NT Jesus was a character created out of much older religious concepts being back-filled to support a growing movement (as opposed to oral traditions passed down from a HJ finally being written down).

Again the cultural momentum can’t be understated. As a lay person it would never have occurred to me that none of the NT stories about Jesus were written by anyone who ever met or heard the guy speak, or even met a guy who met the guy, etc. That when you go looking what you actually get is stuff like guys practically saying ‘I hallucinated this.’
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Old 28th May 2020, 09:44 AM   #1532
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I have to say I have found this thread fascinating. I was raised catholic, lost my faith in that god about 15 years of age, full atheist about 20 years old I'd say. I always assumed jesus did exist but the whole religion of it is nonsense, like the HJ side of this thread. Reading this thread I dont have nearly enough knowledge to engage in debate on it, I'm learning lots from you guys. I have a couple of questions if that's ok, things I'm not quite sure what your stance is.
1.. For the HJ believers. Is it your belief that the generally accepted dates are correct, Jesus dying around 33AD, epistles wrote in the 50's? Would this mean that christianity spread so quick and so wide that within a few decades back then , it had spread to Rome in such a large manner that there was so many members there that Nero could use them as a scapegoat for the fire, and the people of Rome would all know who these people were etc. If this is so haven't a lot of people said the lack of sources mentioning Jesus in the first century are because he was of no importance and would basically be unknown to most. If someone could clarify this for me , and yes my thinking might be muddled here.
2.. For the MJ believers. Do you believe that Nero blamed the christians for the fire? If so and there was so many christians at that time, when and how do you think the religion started , and began to spread so wide .
Anyway I hope the thread keeps running, I'm learning lots
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Old 28th May 2020, 10:36 AM   #1533
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The impression I’m getting from historical sources is that early Christians were known as an influential religious group but not known for following a prophet/guy/God/etc known as Jesus Christ. It was more like a concept that they were going to have this saviour for the end times that were coming, based on older prophecies from the OT era, etc.

Those who’ve actually researched, have I grasped the likely end of the stick?

Last edited by Lithrael; 28th May 2020 at 10:50 AM.
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:05 PM   #1534
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There's no amount of false stories about any person/character that would rationally lead to a conclusion about that person's/character's existence There's just not a bit of sense to be found in that concept because there's no limit to how much false stuff can be said about a real person. (And the impossible parts of this guy's story aren't even very much of it anyway. It's mostly just wandering around talking & some simple routine Benny-Hinn-type "magic" stunts.)

The problem for the "he's just entirely made up" argument is that we have the choice of two human behaviors to ascribe to the authors...

1. Get inspired by a real guy or his following to write some made-up stuff about him along with the real stuf, or
2. Make up an entirely unreal person for those impossible feats to have been done by

...of which #1 is clearly more consistent with human behavior in historical context, by such a wide margin as to make #2 almost absurd by comparison. There's no contest at all which one is the more realistic explanation for the authors' decision to write the books, in the absence of other evidence.

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Old 28th May 2020, 12:07 PM   #1535
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Originally Posted by Lithrael View Post
The impression I’m getting from historical sources is that early Christians were known as an influential religious group but not known for following a prophet/guy/God/etc known as Jesus Christ. It was more like a concept that they were going to have this saviour for the end times that were coming, based on older prophecies from the OT era, etc.

Those who’ve actually researched, have I grasped the likely end of the stick?
You just described messianic/apocalyptic Jews, not Christians. Christianity is what happens when a group like that believes the person they've been waiting for has arrived.
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:15 PM   #1536
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I dont think any of those answered my questions? they were specific enquiries
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:16 PM   #1537
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1.. For the HJ believers. Is it your belief that the generally accepted dates are correct, Jesus dying around 33AD, epistles wrote in the 50's? Would this mean that christianity spread so quick and so wide that within a few decades back then , it had spread to Rome in such a large manner that there was so many members there that Nero could use them as a scapegoat for the fire, and the people of Rome would all know who these people were etc. If this is so haven't a lot of people said the lack of sources mentioning Jesus in the first century are because he was of no importance and would basically be unknown to most. If someone could clarify this for me , and yes my thinking might be muddled here.
2.. For the MJ believers. Do you believe that Nero blamed the christians for the fire? If so and there was so many christians at that time, when and how do you think the religion started , and began to spread so wide .
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Old 28th May 2020, 02:19 PM   #1538
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Originally Posted by theheno View Post
1.. For the HJ believers. Is it your belief that the generally accepted dates are correct, Jesus dying around 33AD, epistles wrote in the 50's? Would this mean that christianity spread so quick and so wide that within a few decades back then , it had spread to Rome in such a large manner that there was so many members there that Nero could use them as a scapegoat for the fire, and the people of Rome would all know who these people were etc. If this is so haven't a lot of people said the lack of sources mentioning Jesus in the first century are because he was of no importance and would basically be unknown to most. If someone could clarify this for me , and yes my thinking might be muddled here.
HJ believers claim their Jesus was little known, a failed prophet and was deified after he was dead.

Who would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet instead of worshipping the Great Magician Simon MAGUS as a God while he was alive?

Who would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet as a God instead of worshipping the living Emperors of Rome?

The HJ argument makes no sense.

It is simply absurd that Jews and people of the Roman Empire would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet as the Messiah, Lord, Saviour and Son of God.

A Jewish Messiah must be alive to be regarded as the prophesied Messianic ruler by the Jews.

Now, once it is understood that all the NT writings are products of fiction, forgeries and false attribution then it is easily seen that the chronology of the events surrounding NT Jesus is completely bogus.

Originally Posted by theheno View Post
.. For the MJ believers. Do you believe that Nero blamed the christians for the fire? If so and there was so many christians at that time, when and how do you think the religion started , and began to spread so wide .
The very first thing that must be understood is the term Christian does not inherently refer to those who believe the Jesus stories.

According writers of antiquity people who believed that Simon Magus was God were called Christians since the time of Claudius c 41-54 CE.

In addition ,there is no mention of a character called Jesus, the Christ and the word Christians in Tacitus Annals 15.44 has been shown to have been manipulated.

In effect, the term Christians in Tacitus Annals 15.44 is in no way evidence of a Jesus cult or an HJ.

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Old 28th May 2020, 02:40 PM   #1539
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Originally Posted by Ulf Nereng View Post
Erm... I keep reading dejudge as claiming precisely that. But perhaps I'm reading his posts the wrong way...

To clarify my opinion: The fact that the gospel writers were constantly making up BS means that they are totally unreliable as evidence for the existence of Jesus. But that doesn't mean that they are evidence against the existence of Jesus, either.

BS is BS; nothing can be learned from it, except perhaps something about the psychology of the BS'er. BS'ers do occasionally say things that are true, though. Even the greatest BS'er of our times (DJT) is rumored to have said ten true things. There's a topic about that in another part of the forum!

Re. the highlight - I don't think that view is unreasonable. But ... if you take away the gospels, discard those completely, then all that would be left as any mention of Jesus at all would be Paul's letters ... but they too are totally discredited by the following observations -

1 for most of Christian history, we had 13 letters which were all assumed without question to be actually written by Paul himself around 50 to 60 AD

2 but now we know that we have no such letters from anywhere near 50 to 60 AD, and the earliest we have probably date from around 200AD

3 all of the letters we have are anonymously written, we have no idea who the copyist writers were

4 out of those 13, even Christian Bible Scholars now accept that at least 6 of the letters are fakes written various people

5 but the remaining 7, although Bible Scholars and Christians all insist that these are genuinely by Paul, in fact we have no idea if those are the genuine ones! It could just as easily be that one of the "fakes" is the only genuine one! ... or it might just as easily be that none of them are genuine!


That's not very good to start with as a credible source of evidence. But of course it gets worse -


6 nowhere in the "genuine" letters does the author "Paul" ever claim to have met a real human Jesus. In fact he specifically says that he only "met" Jesus as a spiritual vision in the heavens.

7 that same author tells us that 500 or more people also "met" Jesus, but again they only met him as sprit in the skies

8 repeatedly throughout all those letters "Paul" make very clear that what he knew about Jesus is always "according to scripture" ... everything Paul writes about his belief in a "Christ", he says he got that from scripture following a blinding revelation from God.

9 Paul never says he got anything at all about Jesus from any actual witnesses ... in fact on the contrary he insists that he got it "from no man", he says in every instance it was a revealtion from God that was "according to scripture".


That's not any kind of credible evidence of a real Jesus, is it? That's really barely any better than the gospels, isn't it?? Where is the evidence that should make us believe that Jesus was more likely than not, ie better than 50% likely?
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Old 28th May 2020, 02:40 PM   #1540
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
HJ believers claim their Jesus was little known, a failed prophet and was deified after he was dead.

Who would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet instead of worshipping the Great Magician Simon MAGUS as a God while he was alive?

Who would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet as a God instead of worshipping the living Emperors of Rome?

The HJ argument makes no sense.

It is simply absurd that Jews and people of the Roman Empire would worship a little known crucified dead failed prophet as the Messiah, Lord, Saviour and Son of God.

A Jewish Messiah must be alive to be regarded as the prophesied Messianic ruler by the Jews.

Now, once it is understood that all the NT writings are products of fiction, forgeries and false attribution then it is easily seen that the chronology of the events surrounding NT Jesus is completely bogus.



The very first thing that must be understood is the term Christian does not inherently refer to those who believe the Jesus stories.

According writers of antiquity people who believed that Simon Magus was God were called Christians since the time of Claudius c 41-54 CE.


In addition ,there is no mention of a character called Jesus, the Christ and the word Christians in Tacitus Annals 15.44 has been shown to have been manipulated.

In effect, the term Christians in Tacitus Annals 15.44 is in no way evidence of a Jesus cult or an HJ.
I did no know that about believers of Simon Magnus were called Christians,that explains the problem i had, thanks for that .
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Old 28th May 2020, 02:48 PM   #1541
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Re. the highlight - I don't think that view is unreasonable. But ... if you take away the gospels, discard those completely, then all that would be left as any mention of Jesus at all would be Paul's letters ... but they too are totally discredited by the following observations -

1 for most of Christian history, we had 13 letters which were all assumed without question to be actually written by Paul himself around 50 to 60 AD

2 but now we know that we have no such letters from anywhere near 50 to 60 AD, and the earliest we have probably date from around 200AD

3 all of the letters we have are anonymously written, we have no idea who the copyist writers were

4 out of those 13, even Christian Bible Scholars now accept that at least 6 of the letters are fakes written various people

5 but the remaining 7, although Bible Scholars and Christians all insist that these are genuinely by Paul, in fact we have no idea if those are the genuine ones! It could just as easily be that one of the "fakes" is the only genuine one! ... or it might just as easily be that none of them are genuine!


That's not very good to start with as a credible source of evidence. But of course it gets worse -


6 nowhere in the "genuine" letters does the author "Paul" ever claim to have met a real human Jesus. In fact he specifically says that he only "met" Jesus as a spiritual vision in the heavens.

7 that same author tells us that 500 or more people also "met" Jesus, but again they only met him as sprit in the skies

8 repeatedly throughout all those letters "Paul" make very clear that what he knew about Jesus is always "according to scripture" ... everything Paul writes about his belief in a "Christ", he says he got that from scripture following a blinding revelation from God.

9 Paul never says he got anything at all about Jesus from any actual witnesses ... in fact on the contrary he insists that he got it "from no man", he says in every instance it was a revealtion from God that was "according to scripture".


That's not any kind of credible evidence of a real Jesus, is it? That's really barely any better than the gospels, isn't it?? Where is the evidence that should make us believe that Jesus was more likely than not, ie better than 50% likely?
Hi Ian, when would you think the gospels were actually written?
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Old 28th May 2020, 02:53 PM   #1542
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Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
There's no amount of false stories about any person/character that would rationally lead to a conclusion about that person's/character's existence There's just not a bit of sense to be found in that concept because there's no limit to how much false stuff can be said about a real person. (And the impossible parts of this guy's story aren't even very much of it anyway. It's mostly just wandering around talking & some simple routine Benny-Hinn-type "magic" stunts.)

The problem for the "he's just entirely made up" argument is that we have the choice of two human behaviors to ascribe to the authors...

1. Get inspired by a real guy or his following to write some made-up stuff about him along with the real stuf, or
2. Make up an entirely unreal person for those impossible feats to have been done by

...of which #1 is clearly more consistent with human behavior in historical context, by such a wide margin as to make #2 almost absurd by comparison. There's no contest at all which one is the more realistic explanation for the authors' decision to write the books, in the absence of other evidence.

No in terms of religion 2) is the one that reflects most of recorded history.
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Old 28th May 2020, 03:02 PM   #1543
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Originally Posted by theheno View Post
I have to say I have found this thread fascinating. I was raised catholic, lost my faith in that god about 15 years of age, full atheist about 20 years old I'd say. I always assumed jesus did exist but the whole religion of it is nonsense, like the HJ side of this thread. Reading this thread I dont have nearly enough knowledge to engage in debate on it, I'm learning lots from you guys. I have a couple of questions if that's ok, things I'm not quite sure what your stance is.
1.. For the HJ believers. Is it your belief that the generally accepted dates are correct, Jesus dying around 33AD, epistles wrote in the 50's? Would this mean that christianity spread so quick and so wide that within a few decades back then , it had spread to Rome in such a large manner that there was so many members there that Nero could use them as a scapegoat for the fire, and the people of Rome would all know who these people were etc. If this is so haven't a lot of people said the lack of sources mentioning Jesus in the first century are because he was of no importance and would basically be unknown to most. If someone could clarify this for me , and yes my thinking might be muddled here.
2.. For the MJ believers. Do you believe that Nero blamed the christians for the fire? If so and there was so many christians at that time, when and how do you think the religion started , and began to spread so wide .
Anyway I hope the thread keeps running, I'm learning lots


Well, I'm not actually an "MJ believer" ... my position is that the evidence of a real Jesus is completely lacking, and the biblical writing all so seriously discredited that there is no good evidential reason think that he probably existed ... but I would not like to guess any percentage likelihood at all, neither 0%, nor 100%, and nor anything in between.

But as far as Nero blaming Christians for a fire etc. - I would not trust any of this writing to be reliable at all. So I'd just dismiss that completely.

How could a religion start without a real human figure as it's central supernatural deity (because Jesus was described as the supernatural scion of God)? Well the answer is that it probably started in exactly the same way as all the hundreds and thousands of other religions started, where the supernatural deity at the heart of the religion never existed at all (although for all of those religions the deity was claimed to be certainly real ... and lots of witnesses claimed to see all of those thousands of deities doing all sorts of things on the Earth and in the skies).

If people thousands of years ago could invent a fictitious god for all those other religions, then they could just as easily do that for Jesus too (and the “Christ” had been believed from, and taught from, OT scripture for over 500 years before any NT Biblical writing … so at the time, all religious Jews were quite sure that just such a saviour Christ was certain to appear).
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Old 28th May 2020, 03:09 PM   #1544
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[quote=Tassman;13104389]



But this is a different issue from saying that some sort of deranged fanatical preacher (they were a dime a dozen back then) never existed - someone who managed to strike the right chord with a group of illiterate fisherman. QUOTE]

You are assuming the account in gMark is historically accurate as to Peter being a fisherman. That may be a literary invention (fisher of men, perhaps? ). You cannot assume this is historical since we know gMark makes stuff up.

The earliest members of the cult of Christ Jesus may have all been highly educated men and women and literate in Greek. Paul certainly was.




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Old 28th May 2020, 03:19 PM   #1545
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Is there any HJ believers here that could help with my first question?
1.. For the HJ believers. Is it your belief that the generally accepted dates are correct, Jesus dying around 33AD, epistles wrote in the 50's? Would this mean that christianity spread so quick and so wide that within a few decades back then , it had spread to Rome in such a large manner that there was so many members there that Nero could use them as a scapegoat for the fire, and the people of Rome would all know who these people were etc. If this is so haven't a lot of people said the lack of sources mentioning Jesus in the first century are because he was of no importance and would basically be unknown to most. If someone could clarify this for me , and yes my thinking might be muddled here.
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Old 28th May 2020, 05:23 PM   #1546
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
What is most amusing is that it is easily argued that Bible Adam did not exist however some have no idea whether or not Bible Jesus, the water walking, transfiguring, resurrecting, ascending son of a Ghost character did exist.

Bible Adam and Bible Jesus are no different they are fiction characters that never ever existed at anytime.

Bible Jesus is the last Adam. Bible Jesus was a Spirit.

1 Corinthians 15:45

Bible Adam and Bible Jesus never ever had any history,
Strawman.
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Old 28th May 2020, 08:05 PM   #1547
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
....If people thousands of years ago could invent a fictitious god for all those other religions, then they could just as easily do that for Jesus too (and the “Christ” had been believed from, and taught from, OT scripture for over 500 years before any NT Biblical writing … so at the time, all religious Jews were quite sure that just such a saviour Christ was certain to appear).
It should be noted that the Jews expected their Messianic ruler at around c 66-70 CE at the time of the Jewish War - not at the time of Pilate c 27-37.

The prediction by the Jews of the arrival of their Messianic ruler around c 66-70 CE was based on their Sacred Scripture.

Josephus' Wars of the Jews 6.5.4
Quote:
But now, what did the most elevate them in undertaking this war, was an ambiguous oracle that was also found in their sacred writings, how," about that time, one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth." The Jews took this prediction to belong to themselves in particular, and many of the wise men were thereby deceived in their determination.
Tacitus' Histories V
Quote:
........... in most there was a firm persuasion, that in the ancient records of their priests was contained a prediction of how at this very time the East was to grow powerful, and rulers, coming from Judaea, were to acquire universal empire...
Suetonius' Life of Vespasian
Quote:
An ancient superstition was current in the East, that out of Judaea would come the rulers of the world. This prediction, as it later proved, referred to two Roman Emperors, Vespasian and his son Titus; but the rebellious Jews, who read it as referring to themselves...
These three writers corroborate that the Jews expected their Messiah at around c 66-70 CE which contradict the NT Jesus stories.

There was no known predicted Jewish Messianic ruler named Jesus of Nazareth up to the start of the 2nd century or up to the writings of Josephus, Tacitus and Suetonius.

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Old 28th May 2020, 08:12 PM   #1548
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[quote=clayflingythingy;13105324]
Originally Posted by Tassman View Post



But this is a different issue from saying that some sort of deranged fanatical preacher (they were a dime a dozen back then) never existed - someone who managed to strike the right chord with a group of illiterate fisherman. QUOTE]

You are assuming the account in gMark is historically accurate as to Peter being a fisherman. That may be a literary invention (fisher of men, perhaps? ). You cannot assume this is historical since we know gMark makes stuff up.

The earliest members of the cult of Christ Jesus may have all been highly educated men and women and literate in Greek. Paul certainly was.




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Which Paul was an early member of the cult of Christ Jesus?

You cannot assume anything in the Pauline Epistles about Jesus and the apostles to be historical. We know the Epistles are riddled with fiction or as some suggested, products of hallucination, mass hysteria or some kind of brain defect.
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Old 29th May 2020, 12:06 AM   #1549
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Originally Posted by Ulf Nereng View Post
Erm... I keep reading dejudge as claiming precisely that. But perhaps I'm reading his posts the wrong way...
Oh, maybe he did say that.
I have long since ignored dejudge.

If I was wrong on that, I apologise.
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Old 29th May 2020, 01:40 AM   #1550
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Originally Posted by theheno View Post
Hi Ian, when would you think the gospels were actually written?

Like everyone else, I have to guess. But first I think that a crucial point to understand is that what we have now as the gospel stories of Jesus did not of course come from the smallest fragmented remains or from more extensive pages which are nevertheless only partly readable and with a lot of the content missing. Some of that may be quite early, say 150AD to 250AD, and it may be identifiable as coming from a specific gospel (eg there is a credit-card sized remnant that is said to be from the gospel of John, and said to date from about 125AD … though it could by much later), but none of that is sufficiently complete to give us the details that everyone quotes as the gospel accounts of Jesus ... what has been used to find all the familiar gospel stories of Jesus are much later more complete copies that are typically dated as no earlier than about 4th to 6th century (and most of it is later than 6th century) … see this Wikipedia link for example -

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

But the way those fragments and larger sections have been dated, is afaik mainly by some specific parts of the written content which mentions for example the destruction of a particular temple. However, I don't think that is a very scientific or reliable way to date those remnants at all

Some radiocarbon dating has also been done, but iirc the error range is really quite large, or at least it's too large in respect of how precisely people argue about when specific events might have occurred. That is - the arguments about a HJ often hinge on something happening with about 10 or 20 years either way ... but the error range on the radiocarbon dates may be as much as 100 years or more. See, for example the link below to a paper reporting radiocarbon dating of two papyrus samples, one from the gospel of John which gave a date around 700AD, and the other from a gospel attributed to the wife of Jesus (!!) which gave a date between about 200AD to 400AD -

https://projects.iq.harvard.edu/file...port2013v4.pdf


So what's the conclusion from any of that? Well, I think the first thing to say is that claimed dates in the first century, which are the dates always claimed by biblical scholars (and of course by all Christian leaders), are a complete guess, and really they are a guess which attempts to push the dates back as close as possible to the believed lifetime of Jesus, and they do that simply because it is very well known that written evidence like that becomes far less reliable as soon it begins to be many years or several decades after the claimed events … IOW – if it's much more than say 30 or 40 years after the lifetime of Jesus then it's becoming increasingly less useful as a reliable source.

The next thing to say is that, because we don't have any gospels at all from the first century (not even the tiniest fragment), we do not really know what any first century gospels might have said about Jesus. They might quite easily have included passages that showed they were writing about a messiah (ie a “Christ”) who was only ever a figure from religious belief. And one reason to think that might be the case, is that, that is the way Jesus is actually described in Paul's letters (and they are supposed to be the earliest writing about Jesus, ie pre-dating the gospels).

And finally- afaik even Christian writers and bible scholars accept that the gospels were not originally in the form that we see now. Instead those gospels probably started out as numerous so-called short “pericopes”, ie short religious sermons or preaching stories, which were later gathered together to create each gospel (see for example E.P. Sanders; The Historical Figure of Jesus … E.P. Sanders is a very well known Christian writer on the history of Jesus, and of course he believes that Jesus was certainly real). In other words what we have discovered as “gospels”, ie the earliest dated remnants etc., are themselves a compilation made from all sorts of disparate short preaching stories/sermons … and presumably many other such sermons existed but were omitted from the compiled gospels (omitted perhaps because they did not fit the story that, by that date (eg 200AD) the Church wanted to tell about belief in Jesus).
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Old 29th May 2020, 04:45 AM   #1551
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Thanks for that detailed answer Ian, food for thought there. Any HJ people might answer my first question, I'm trying to get both points of view clear in my head.
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Old 29th May 2020, 05:59 AM   #1552
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post

The next thing to say is that, because we don't have any gospels at all from the first century (not even the tiniest fragment), we do not really know what any first century gospels might have said about Jesus. They might quite easily have included passages that showed they were writing about a messiah (ie a “Christ”) who was only ever a figure from religious belief. And one reason to think that might be the case, is that, that is the way Jesus is actually described in Paul's letters (and they are supposed to be the earliest writing about Jesus, ie pre-dating the gospels).
There is no historical evidence at all, none whatsoever, that any Epistle predated the Gospels. No NT Gospel writer quoted a single verse or phrase from the so-called Pauline Epistle, not even the author of Acts who claimed to have travelled with Paul around the Roman Empire during his supposed missionary activities.

We know exactly how so-called Scholars made up early dates for the Epistles they simply used Acts of the Apostles which is known as a useless fiction.

The very so-called Epistles show that the authors were aware of Jesus stories found in the Gospels.



Originally Posted by IanS View Post
And finally- afaik even Christian writers and bible scholars accept that the gospels were not originally in the form that we see now. Instead those gospels probably started out as numerous so-called short “pericopes”, ie short religious sermons or preaching stories, which were later gathered together to create each gospel (see for example E.P. Sanders; The Historical Figure of Jesus … E.P. Sanders is a very well known Christian writer on the history of Jesus, and of course he believes that Jesus was certainly real). In other words what we have discovered as “gospels”, ie the earliest dated remnants etc., are themselves a compilation made from all sorts of disparate short preaching stories/sermons … and presumably many other such sermons existed but were omitted from the compiled gospels (omitted perhaps because they did not fit the story that, by that date (eg 200AD) the Church wanted to tell about belief in Jesus).
Again, there is no historical evidence at all, none whatsoever, that the Gospels were earlier than the 2nd century and that they were originally a compilation of short/preaching/sermons.

It must never be forgotten that the NT Gospels were falsely attributed to Matthew, Mark, Luke and John to deceive people of antiquity into thinking the Gospels were written long before c 70 CE or before the Fall of the Jewish Temple.

The authors of the Epistles have been caught in their lies since the story that Jesus was crucified, resurrected and ascended to heaven was invented long after Paul was supposedly dead.

There was no prophesied Jewish Messiah called Jesus of Nazareth up to the end of the 1st century or at least up to c 66-70 CE based on writings attributed to Joseph, Tacitus and Suetonius.

Last edited by dejudge; 29th May 2020 at 06:03 AM.
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Old 29th May 2020, 11:03 AM   #1553
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Post

Readers should be aware that IanS likes to date books according to the earliest manuscript that still exists.

Scholars don't do that - else that would mean Homer was only written around the 9th or 10th century AD - nearly 2 millenia wrong.

IanS does not accept he is wrong on this. Do your own research on that topic.

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Old 29th May 2020, 11:39 AM   #1554
IanS
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Originally Posted by Kapyong View Post
Readers should be aware that IanS likes to date books according to the earliest manuscript that still exists.

Scholars don't do that - else that would mean Homer was only written around the 9th or 10th century AD - nearly 2 millenia wrong.

IanS does not accept he is wrong on this. Do your own research on that topic.

Kapyong

I am certainly not "dating books according to the earliest manuscript that still exists". And I did not say that at all.

What I'm doing is pointing out that the information we have from that biblical writing is from much later than the 1st century.

We do not have any such writing from the 1st century. Even though bible scholars and Christian leaders etc. almost always claim that the gospels and letters date from about 50AD to 100AD ... well, we have none of that.

What actually exists are copies that were made centuries later. And we can only know what is said about Jesus in those much later copies. We do not know if it said the same things about Jesus in any 1st century gospels (if indeed there were any in the first century).
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Old 29th May 2020, 12:45 PM   #1555
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I understood Ian to mean what he just said. There's no physical evidence of the bible from the 1st century, so the dates I've always been told cannot be 100% certain.
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Old 29th May 2020, 02:14 PM   #1556
IanS
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Originally Posted by theheno View Post
I understood Ian to mean what he just said. There's no physical evidence of the bible from the 1st century, so the dates I've always been told cannot be 100% certain.

Yep. We can only go on the gospel stories that we do actually have. And none of those are from the first century (according to all bible scholars and other Christian pro-HJ writers).

We can't draw our conclusions from 1st century gospels or letters, because we don't have any of those!

If there were gospels written around 70AD to 100AD, then what did they say about Jesus? Nobody knows. Could it have been exactly the same as was written in (say) 3rd or 4th century copies? Might have been; who knows? Could it have been significantly different than what was being written by the 3rd or 4th century and later? … Might have been ; who knows” ….. etc etc.
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Old 29th May 2020, 03:06 PM   #1557
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Yep. We can only go on the gospel stories that we do actually have. And none of those are from the first century (according to all bible scholars and other Christian pro-HJ writers).

We can't draw our conclusions from 1st century gospels or letters, because we don't have any of those!

If there were gospels written around 70AD to 100AD, then what did they say about Jesus? Nobody knows. Could it have been exactly the same as was written in (say) 3rd or 4th century copies? Might have been; who knows? Could it have been significantly different than what was being written by the 3rd or 4th century and later? … Might have been ; who knows” ….. etc etc.

Bah! One of these days somebody will dig up the original notebooks used by some of the faithful, as they followed Jesus around and noted down his utterances. The RCC will grab them and on the shelf next to the Turin Shroud they will go.
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Old 29th May 2020, 06:13 PM   #1558
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
But he doesn't make such a blanket dismissal, it's a subtle difference but what he makes a blanket dismissal of is the so called historical evidence for a person called Jesus who started Christianity.

There is nothing outside the texts of those that believe in a god called Jesus that evidences that he ever existed,
A 'subtle difference', or simply selection bias?

I'm sure there are other historical figures for which we also have no direct evidence outside the writings of their followers. But just because other records may not have been written or did not survive, doesn't mean the people didn't exist. So what we have here is an absence of evidence, not evidence of absence.

For most of us this would be enough. But not dejudge. Why the desperate need to make a blanket dismissal in this case but not others? I sense a religious motive - a need to bolster one's unbelief against the mere possibility that the myth might have some small secular basis in fact, for fear that any chink in this armor could lead to a return of belief. Those of us who are comfortable in our atheism have no need for such strident denial.

Quote:
if one thinks it is likely or 50/50 that Jesus existed
Let's ignore the name 'Jesus' for now, and consider:- how likely is it that Christianity started out as a small sect with a charismatic leader, as opposed to a group of people who got together and decided to invent one? History shows us that it is highly likely, while the alternative is rarer.

Quote:
why not also hold the same view about the old testament god that the Christians claim is the same god as Jesus? After all there is just as much actual historical evidence that he was a real person.
It's not the same. The OT God was always a supernatural creator god, never a human.

According to the NT, Jesus was a man who claimed to have a special relationship with God. Ignore the credulous reporting of his claims and 'supernatural' tricks, and it is easy to come out with the impression that he was just another cult leader who got up to similar shenanigans, eventually getting himself killed for it (his lieutenants then having to invent a resurrection and ascension to explain his absence).

Perhaps the biography of Jesus was created out of whole cloth to provide a suitable leader for a religion that didn't have one, but if so the writers did a pretty good job - even to the point of undermining their attempt to deify him (some passages make you wonder about Jesus's own confidence in being the 'chosen one'). One has to wonder why they needed to do this.

OTOH, if stories about an actual cult leader already existed then they just had to exploit them. It stands to reason that if such a cult leader did exist then some of the stories probably had at least some basis in fact, and it might be possible to strip away the embellishments to reveal it.

Quote:
It is simply that our cultures in what are or at least were originally "Christian" countries that make us prone to the idea that Jesus "probably" was a "real" person, it is a baked in assumption. Step beyond that presumption and you see he was no more likely to have been a real person than as I said Zeus, Apollo, Vishnu or Xemu.
I think it's more than that. Compare the Greek myths to the NT, and Jesus comes across as far more believable as a real person than Zeus or Apollo.

A better parallel might be Robin Hood. Again, the name was quite popular (only for a robber rather than a savoir) and the established narrative (a mishmash and embellishments of earlier stories) is obvious fiction. Also,
Quote:
There is at present little or no scholarly support for the view that tales of Robin Hood have stemmed from mythology or folklore, from fairies or other mythological origins, any such associations being regarded as later development. It was once a popular view, however. The "mythological theory" dates back at least to 1584, when Reginald Scot identified Robin Hood with the Germanic goblin "Hudgin" or Hodekin and associated him with Robin Goodfellow... While the outlaw often shows great skill in archery, swordplay and disguise, his feats are no more exaggerated than those of characters in other ballads, such as Kinmont Willie, which were based on historical events.
So here we have a case with no religious baggage, but which has attracted similar views. Note the objection to the myth theory - 'his feats are no more exaggerated...'. The general consensus is that the story of Robin Hood has its roots in a historical character whose existence cannot be independently verified. If Jesus was the leader of a cult that became Christianity, his feats are no more exaggerated than those of other cult leaders. By this measure, both Robin Hood and Jesus could have been real people who have become the subject of myth.
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Old 29th May 2020, 06:39 PM   #1559
Roger Ramjets
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Bah! One of these days somebody will dig up the original notebooks used by some of the faithful, as they followed Jesus around and noted down his utterances. The RCC will grab them and on the shelf next to the Turin Shroud they will go.
You may scoff, but we don't know that it won't happen.

However one thing we do know is the RCC has contemporaneous proof that the Turin Shroud is a fake, but they they let people believe in it anyway. The 'original notebooks' on Jesus could largely refute what is written in the Bible and it wouldn't sway the faithful.

Many already don't believe in the literal truth of the Bible, and I suspect most of the church hierarchy are atheists. They believe in God as much as any business executive believes in their product. I have no problem with that so long as they act responsibly when dealing with things that matter (science, the environment, social responsibilities etc.).
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Old 29th May 2020, 06:56 PM   #1560
dejudge
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
.... The OT God was always a supernatural creator god, never a human.
So, when was Jesus ever a real human?

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
According to the NT, Jesus was a man who claimed to have a special relationship with God. Ignore the credulous reporting of his claims and 'supernatural' tricks, and it is easy to come out with the impression that he was just another cult leader who got up to similar shenanigans, eventually getting himself killed for it (his lieutenants then having to invent a resurrection and ascension to explain his absence).
What a ridiculous contradictory post!!!

You know that according to the NT Jesus was born of a Ghost yet you claim [by amnesia or dishonesty] that according to the NT Jesus was a man.

Please look at the NT again.

Jesus was born of a Ghost.

Jesus was never human always fiction.
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