Columbia PhD in Ancient History destroys Christianity and Jesus

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posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:32 PM
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Just a quick search of wiki but it should suffice

Historicity of events
Modern scholars consider the baptism of Jesus and his crucifixion to be the two historically certain facts about him, James Dunn stating that these "two facts in the life of Jesus command almost universal assent".[8] Dunn states that these two facts "rank so high on the 'almost impossible to doubt or deny' scale of historical facts" that they are often the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus.[8] Bart Ehrman states that the crucifixion of Jesus on the orders of Pontius Pilate is the most certain element about him.[470] John Dominic Crossan states that the crucifixion of Jesus is as certain as any historical fact can be.[471] Craig Blomberg states that most scholars in the third quest for the historical Jesus consider the crucifixion indisputable.[472] Although scholars agree on the historicity of the crucifixion, they differ on the reason and context for it, e.g. both E.P. Sanders and Paula Fredriksen support the historicity of the crucifixion, but contend that Jesus did not foretell of his own crucifixion, and that his prediction of the crucifixion is a Christian story.[473] Geza Vermes also views the crucifixion a historical event but provides his own explanation and background for it.[473] John P. Meier views the crucifixion of Jesus as historical fact and states that based on the criterion of embarrassment Christians would not have invented the painful death of their leader.[474] Meier states that a number of other criteria, e.g. the criterion of multiple attestation (i.e. confirmation by more than one source), the criterion of coherence (i.e. that it fits with other historical elements) and the criterion of rejection (i.e. that it is not disputed by ancient sources) help establish the crucifixion of Jesus as a historical event.[475]
reply to post by OrchusGhule
 




posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:33 PM
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Originally posted by Klassified
reply to post by NotReallyASecret
 

Thanks. Guess I should have worn my glasses while watching it. He looked young to my eyes.
Corrected.
edit on 7/10/2012 by Klassified because: (no reason given)



Looking young is a good thing, if you can date twenty year olds more easily !
edit on 10-7-2012 by NotReallyASecret because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:40 PM
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reply to post by OrchusGhule
 


Well, I am smart enough to know that I cannot PROVE the divinity of Jesus, neither can any writer of antiquity, whether gospel writer or historian. It is at this point in debate where the combatants either degrade into hostilities or politely bow out, agreeing to disagree. I prefer the latter.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:44 PM
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Originally posted by micmerci
Just a quick search of wiki but it should suffice

Historicity of events
Modern scholars consider the baptism of Jesus and his crucifixion to be the two historically certain facts about him, James Dunn stating that these "two facts in the life of Jesus command almost universal assent".[8] Dunn states that these two facts "rank so high on the 'almost impossible to doubt or deny' scale of historical facts" that they are often the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus.[8] Bart Ehrman states that the crucifixion of Jesus on the orders of Pontius Pilate is the most certain element about him.[470] John Dominic Crossan states that the crucifixion of Jesus is as certain as any historical fact can be.[471] Craig Blomberg states that most scholars in the third quest for the historical Jesus consider the crucifixion indisputable.[472] Although scholars agree on the historicity of the crucifixion, they differ on the reason and context for it, e.g. both E.P. Sanders and Paula Fredriksen support the historicity of the crucifixion, but contend that Jesus did not foretell of his own crucifixion, and that his prediction of the crucifixion is a Christian story.[473] Geza Vermes also views the crucifixion a historical event but provides his own explanation and background for it.[473] John P. Meier views the crucifixion of Jesus as historical fact and states that based on the criterion of embarrassment Christians would not have invented the painful death of their leader.[474] Meier states that a number of other criteria, e.g. the criterion of multiple attestation (i.e. confirmation by more than one source), the criterion of coherence (i.e. that it fits with other historical elements) and the criterion of rejection (i.e. that it is not disputed by ancient sources) help establish the crucifixion of Jesus as a historical event.[475]
reply to post by OrchusGhule
 




Most of those you are quoting are theologians and clergy, which I do not consider to be reliable sources as they have historically been the people responsible for the distortions present in the bible in the first place. Those who are actual historians I know to have serious doubts as to the details of the bible compared with historical record.

Again, I am not necessarily disputing the existence of Jesus as a person; I am disputing the GOSPEL, in which Jesus was said to have been divine and performed miraculous acts. He could have existed, certainly, but he was merely a philospher around which a cult arose and grew far out of proportion due to the mythical element that was, at some point, introduced to the story.

You have assumed that I was disputing the existence of a person named Jesus, and ignored my actual question, which was whether or not someone could provide actual proof of events in the gospel, which portrays Jesus as a divine god-on-Earth.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:48 PM
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reply to post by OrchusGhule
 


No one can provide the proof that you are asking for. And it is my belief that it is intentional.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:49 PM
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Originally posted by micmerci
reply to post by OrchusGhule
 


No one can provide the proof that you are asking for. And it is my belief that it is intentional.


No hostilities involved for me. Its just a discussion, and one I've had with many people before. But here's the point, and it relates directly with this video in the OP. If many of the events surrounding Jesus are known to have been embellished and exaggerated to impose a shroud of the divine over the figure Jesus, this means that the gospel as it is known now is MYTH. That is the definition of myth, which is what the speaker in the video is saying. Myth can contain actual events and characters as well as fictitious events and characters. That is what makes myth relevant to history in a way, because it involves elements of the real.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:53 PM
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Originally posted by OrchusGhule
Again, I am not necessarily disputing the existence of Jesus as a person; I am disputing the GOSPEL, in which Jesus was said to have been divine and performed miraculous acts. He could have existed, certainly, but he was merely a philospher around which a cult arose and grew far out of proportion due to the mythical element that was, at some point, introduced to the story.


Okay, so you accept the Gospel as evidence that Jesus existed, but you don't accept the Gospel as evidence of his life and teachings? The Gospel, intentionally, gives us few options as to the person of Jesus. They state that he was God, incarnate, so if you accept the truth of Jesus' existence from those texts, do you believe that the writers lied about Jesus' divinity, that he did to them, or that he was a madman who simply believed himself divine?



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 09:53 PM
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reply to post by OrchusGhule
 


Just to clarify, I meant that the intentionality was on the part of God- that He will not allow it to be proven. I didn't mean that you were being intentional in your questioning. I hope it didn't come across that way.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:02 PM
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Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by OrchusGhule
Again, I am not necessarily disputing the existence of Jesus as a person; I am disputing the GOSPEL, in which Jesus was said to have been divine and performed miraculous acts. He could have existed, certainly, but he was merely a philospher around which a cult arose and grew far out of proportion due to the mythical element that was, at some point, introduced to the story.


Okay, so you accept the Gospel as evidence that Jesus existed, but you don't accept the Gospel as evidence of his life and teachings? The Gospel, intentionally, gives us few options as to the person of Jesus. They state that he was God, incarnate, so if you accept the truth of Jesus' existence from those texts, do you believe that the writers lied about Jesus' divinity, that he did to them, or that he was a madman who simply believed himself divine?


That is not what I'm saying at all. Read my other posts and you will see that. I don't accept the truth of Jesus' existence from those texts. I accept the possibility of the existence of a man named (translated) Jesus who was a philosopher and/or religious figure of some stature, and I do so through other texts, not from the bible. I also accept that he is possibly an entirely fabricated person, or a reshaping of an even older mythical figure or figures. And sure, he could have been a madman who believed himself divine, though I've never really considered that possibility much considering there is no real evidence indicating such a thing.

My point is that no one actually knows enough about the guy to say he existed for absolute certain, and much less to state the fellow actually claimed to be the son of god and savior to mankind. To me, evidence points toward his existence as a philospher, much like many who are known to have existed for certain. Yet, for whatever reason, his message has been enshrined with mythical divinity. Thus, its a myth.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:11 PM
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Originally posted by OrchusGhule
I accept the possibility of the existence of a man named (translated) Jesus who was a philosopher and/or religious figure of some stature, and I do so through other texts, not from the bible.


What other texts? Everything else that names him has been dated after Paul's epistles, so one is left with needing to reconcile Paul's view of Christ with whatever source you're using (Josephus, Gospel of Thomas, Gospel of Truth, etc.) Unless one views Paul and his followers as delusional (which would include Luke and, through commonality, all the other writers of the Bible.) In which case, one would need to demonstrate the that source had more credibility than Paul did, and I think that's a bit of a stretch.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:20 PM
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Originally posted by micmerci
reply to post by OrchusGhule
 


Just to clarify, I meant that the intentionality was on the part of God- that He will not allow it to be proven. I didn't mean that you were being intentional in your questioning. I hope it didn't come across that way.


No worries.

I understand what you say about intentionality and that god would not allow it to be proven because he requires faith instead of knowledge. To that I would say I also have doubts on a spiritual and philosophical level. It always seems...strange to me that some people believed and others did not. Why would a message so important be encased within this fog of uncertainty and doubt? Why would the salvation of the entire human species on Earth, which supposedly relies on this one act of Jesus' death, be lost on so many billions of people? Would not that truth of all important truths be self evident and a shining beacon for all humans to see and follow? I do not see that it is, and to me the fact that we are here able to discuss and debate the existence of the key figure in this story demonstrates that there is more mythology than reality involved in the gospel. I think the message of the "true way," if you will, would be far more clear and self evident so that any human could understand its truth. But that's just my view, of course.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:28 PM
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Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by OrchusGhule
I accept the possibility of the existence of a man named (translated) Jesus who was a philosopher and/or religious figure of some stature, and I do so through other texts, not from the bible.


What other texts? Everything else that names him has been dated after Paul's epistles, so one is left with needing to reconcile Paul's view of Christ with whatever source you're using (Josephus, Gospel of Thomas, Gospel of Truth, etc.) Unless one views Paul and his followers as delusional (which would include Luke and, through commonality, all the other writers of the Bible.) In which case, one would need to demonstrate the that source had more credibility than Paul did, and I think that's a bit of a stretch.


Texts that do not refer to Jesus specifically, which is not required to accept the possibility of the existence of a person named Jesus. There are numerous texts from verified historians at the supposed time of Jesus that provide record of the existence of many philosophers and religious figures, some of whom were similar to Jesus in teachings, minus the divine aspect. As such, it is not outside reason to accept that a person named Jesus, similar to said philosophers, existed at some period and that his teachings were eventually exaggerated to include supernatural elements, as oral traditions often are.

There is strong evidence, however, that the story of Jesus is a recreation of a common theme in the mythology of that area that had been present for a few thousand years. It is also conceivable that the person Jesus existed and had some social influence, and this mythical theme was imposed upon his history by his followers. That's what I'm saying; there's no way to know for sure.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:34 PM
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Originally posted by OrchusGhule

Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by OrchusGhule
I accept the possibility of the existence of a man named (translated) Jesus who was a philosopher and/or religious figure of some stature, and I do so through other texts, not from the bible.


What other texts? Everything else that names him has been dated after Paul's epistles, so one is left with needing to reconcile Paul's view of Christ with whatever source you're using (Josephus, Gospel of Thomas, Gospel of Truth, etc.) Unless one views Paul and his followers as delusional (which would include Luke and, through commonality, all the other writers of the Bible.) In which case, one would need to demonstrate the that source had more credibility than Paul did, and I think that's a bit of a stretch.


Texts that do not refer to Jesus specifically, which is not required to accept the possibility of the existence of a person named Jesus. There are numerous texts from verified historians at the supposed time of Jesus that provide record of the existence of many philosophers and religious figures, some of whom were similar to Jesus in teachings, minus the divine aspect. As such, it is not outside reason to accept that a person named Jesus, similar to said philosophers, existed at some period and that his teachings were eventually exaggerated to include supernatural elements, as oral traditions often are.


Sorry, I guess I wasn't specific. "What other texts?" requests actual references. I'm an historian who has an interest in early Christianity, the development of Orthodoxy, and heresies of the 2nd Century. So I'm not looking for a generic answer, but specificity that I can go look at to expand my understanding of that time. I'm already pretty familiar with early Christian writing, so I would appreciate other legitimate sources.

Thanks!



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:40 PM
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IF I'm following this correctly (and it's a big "if") the OP (and his supporters) is demanding proof that meets the following criteria: It must have been written prior to 35 A.D., by a person who witnessed a miracle, in such a form that the original survives to this day, and it must not have been written by anyone who was swayed by said miracle to become a Christian.

Have I got that straight? If so, the OP is chasing moonbeams by proposing tests not required of any other ancient figure, are ahistorical, and seem to be designed to prevent serious discussion.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:46 PM
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reply to post by NotReallyASecret
 





didn't realize how much of the Gospels was directly lifted from the Old Testament


For someone who was a supposed "saved christian once" you don't know that much about scripture do you? Does the word "prophecy" confuse you? Even Paul tells us the Tenach was a shadow of things to come.

Reading someone else's apologetics is a pretty piss poor excuse for not reading the book yourself.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:47 PM
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Originally posted by charles1952
IF I'm following this correctly (and it's a big "if") the OP (and his supporters) is demanding proof that meets the following criteria: It must have been written prior to 35 A.D., by a person who witnessed a miracle, in such a form that the original survives to this day, and it must not have been written by anyone who was swayed by said miracle to become a Christian.

Have I got that straight? If so, the OP is chasing moonbeams by proposing tests not required of any other ancient figure, are ahistorical, and seem to be designed to prevent serious discussion.


No, not really. The OP is claiming (by way of Richard Carrier, OP hasn't had an original thought in the thread) that the Gospels are unreliable as sources of historical knowledge because there are undercurrents of implied Scriptural support in them. In other words, if the story in Mark of Barabbas' sparing at the hands of the Romans are really just a parable that restates the Passover Custom, we can safely assume that everything in the Gospels is a lie.

Or something, I guess. OP never really watched (or understood, at least,) the debate, so who knows.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 10:53 PM
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reply to post by adjensen
 





Sorry, I guess I wasn't specific. "What other texts?" requests actual references. I'm an historian who has an interest in early Christianity, the development of Orthodoxy, and heresies of the 2nd Century. So I'm not looking for a generic answer, but specificity that I can go look at to expand my understanding of that time. I'm already pretty familiar with early Christian writing, so I would appreciate other legitimate sources


Have you read the extrabiblical accounts from Tacitus, Pliny the Yonger, Marabar Sarapion etc? There was one account of a fellow making fun of the jews for killing their own God but i can't remember his name.

Here's some extrabiblical sources if you haven't got to them yet.

www.rationalchristianity.net...



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 11:01 PM
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Originally posted by lonewolf19792000
reply to post by adjensen
 





Sorry, I guess I wasn't specific. "What other texts?" requests actual references. I'm an historian who has an interest in early Christianity, the development of Orthodoxy, and heresies of the 2nd Century. So I'm not looking for a generic answer, but specificity that I can go look at to expand my understanding of that time. I'm already pretty familiar with early Christian writing, so I would appreciate other legitimate sources


Have you read the extrabiblical accounts from Tacitus, Pliny the Yonger, Marabar Sarapion etc? There was one account of a fellow making fun of the jews for killing their own God but i can't remember his name.

Here's some extrabiblical sources if you haven't got to them yet.

www.rationalchristianity.net...



Thanks, friend :-)

I'm well aware of sources of Jesus' historic presence outside of the Gospel, I'm just curious to know what this poster had in mind, as it may be something new that I didn't know about.



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 11:26 PM
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Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by OrchusGhule

Originally posted by adjensen

Originally posted by OrchusGhule
I accept the possibility of the existence of a man named (translated) Jesus who was a philosopher and/or religious figure of some stature, and I do so through other texts, not from the bible.


What other texts? Everything else that names him has been dated after Paul's epistles, so one is left with needing to reconcile Paul's view of Christ with whatever source you're using (Josephus, Gospel of Thomas, Gospel of Truth, etc.) Unless one views Paul and his followers as delusional (which would include Luke and, through commonality, all the other writers of the Bible.) In which case, one would need to demonstrate the that source had more credibility than Paul did, and I think that's a bit of a stretch.


Texts that do not refer to Jesus specifically, which is not required to accept the possibility of the existence of a person named Jesus. There are numerous texts from verified historians at the supposed time of Jesus that provide record of the existence of many philosophers and religious figures, some of whom were similar to Jesus in teachings, minus the divine aspect. As such, it is not outside reason to accept that a person named Jesus, similar to said philosophers, existed at some period and that his teachings were eventually exaggerated to include supernatural elements, as oral traditions often are.


Sorry, I guess I wasn't specific. "What other texts?" requests actual references. I'm an historian who has an interest in early Christianity, the development of Orthodoxy, and heresies of the 2nd Century. So I'm not looking for a generic answer, but specificity that I can go look at to expand my understanding of that time. I'm already pretty familiar with early Christian writing, so I would appreciate other legitimate sources.

Thanks!


Come on, I'm sure you know of at least a few. There was a number of individuals who claimed to be the messiah of Jews or whose followers reformed their story into that of a messiah. Most of them were rebels or leaders of revolts who were killed by the Romans. Suetonius makes some vague mention of a Chrestus, and there is the Talmud, which contains references to a figure some believe to have have been Jesus, which is where the name Yeshu comes from, though I believe the two were separate individuals due to distinct differences in the story. You have the numerous Jewish messiahs, some of whom were, strangely enough, mentioned by Josephus in portions of his works that have not been altered by christians. Reading other religious texts from other parts of the world within 100 years before and after 1 C.E. also contain similar teachings and mythologies. I'm not going to write a study guide for you though, friend. Just read historians during that time who did not mention Jesus specifically, but wrote of other events and people. That period was full of false messiahs, gurus, philosophers, and teachers. You know, sort of like all periods of history before and since. I'm just of the opinion that the character Jesus' story has been blown far out of proportion for absolutely no reason at all. I'll bow out of this one, leave you to your historical searchings, and go to sleep. Good night.
edit on 10-7-2012 by OrchusGhule because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 10 2012 @ 11:27 PM
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reply to post by NotReallyASecret
 


I'm going to say this from a non-Christian perspective. Whenever we see ancient texts (6,000 years old even), we don't question the stories but take them as historical documents. Yet, when you introduce a collection of relatively new documents (only 2,000 years old), it gets scrutinized to an irrational degree.

There is only one reason to do this. It is because of personal bias against a religion. Much older texts speak of Sumerian people like Pabulgagi, Gilgamesh, and Aga who claimed fantastical theological event and believed their ziggurats actually contained gods who personified their cities. We don't doubt they exist just because we don't believe in their religion.

You can doubt their claims to his divinity but to deny his existence altogether based on probability is borderline prejudice. And to top it off, there are a few bits and pieces of extra-biblical evidence that suggest he existed. So why strive so hard to disprove something just because its existence upsets you?





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