ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
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07-03-2013, 09:44 PM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
The word contemporary in historical context refers to a specific period of time and does not refer to an exact simultaneous coexistence.

Now with this in mind, it really depends on how we, as individuals, view the Gospels records. Some of you will see them as a complete and total fabrication of a nonexistent person, while others (including myself) will view them as nothing more than an embellishment of the life of a historical person.

All available evidence indicates that at least 3 of the Gospel records were written by persons contemporary to the time of Jesus of Nazareth.

Paul was also a contemporary, and the evidence within his letters indicates that he was exposed to information regarding this Jesus fellow from 1st hand witnesses to the existence of Jesus.

Flavius Josephus was born during the same decade that Jesus purportedly was crucified, and his works contain at least one authentic record of the existence of Jesus who was called Christ, and was the brother of James.

This is really the best anyone can do to provide an argument for contemporary. It doesn't actually prove anything, because when it comes to ancient history nothing can ever be proven conclusively.

That's about all I'm going to say on this since this topic has been done to death already.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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07-03-2013, 10:01 PM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(07-03-2013 09:44 PM)Free Wrote:  The word contemporary in historical context refers to a specific period of time and does not refer to an exact simultaneous coexistence.

Now with this in mind, it really depends on how we, as individuals, view the Gospels records. Some of you will see them as a complete and total fabrication of a nonexistent person, while others (including myself) will view them as nothing more than an embellishment of the life of a historical person.

All available evidence indicates that at least 3 of the Gospel records were written by persons contemporary to the time of Jesus of Nazareth.

Paul was also a contemporary, and the evidence within his letters indicates that he was exposed to information regarding this Jesus fellow from 1st hand witnesses to the existence of Jesus.

Flavius Josephus was born during the same decade that Jesus purportedly was crucified, and his works contain at least one authentic record of the existence of Jesus who was called Christ, and was the brother of James.

This is really the best anyone can do to provide an argument for contemporary. It doesn't actually prove anything, because when it comes to ancient history nothing can ever be proven conclusively.

That's about all I'm going to say on this since this topic has been done to death already.



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08-03-2013, 05:15 AM (This post was last modified: 08-03-2013 05:19 AM by Sceptical Prophet.)
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(04-03-2013 06:55 AM)anotherother Wrote:  Been having a debate with a theist who claims there is a lot of clear evidence that Jesus existed. I have repeatedly asked him to show me evidence from historians who were alive at the same time as Jesus, who have documented any of the stories from the Gospels. All the writers they normally churn-out lived after Jesus died. Are there any?
Nope, the bible was written after Jesus died, though supposedly the earlier volumes were written by those who had lived at the same time as him.

A lot of the bible contradicts itself too because of all the different writers. No one could really get their story straight.

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08-03-2013, 05:43 AM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(08-03-2013 05:15 AM)Sceptical Prophet Wrote:  
(04-03-2013 06:55 AM)anotherother Wrote:  Been having a debate with a theist who claims there is a lot of clear evidence that Jesus existed. I have repeatedly asked him to show me evidence from historians who were alive at the same time as Jesus, who have documented any of the stories from the Gospels. All the writers they normally churn-out lived after Jesus died. Are there any?
Nope, the bible was written after Jesus died, though supposedly the earlier volumes were written by those who had lived at the same time as him.

A lot of the bible contradicts itself too because of all the different writers. No one could really get their story straight.


Not quite true. If one speculates that Jesus was Jesus of Gamala (ie, Izas of Adiabene), and thus he was alive in the AD 60s, then there were a few 'contemporary' authors to choose from. (And there is a great deal of evidence to say that this is so.)

Josephus Flavius, for example, who records the life of Jesus of Gamala in some detail.
The Gospel of Balaam is another. Balaam is a Talmudic hypocorism for Jesus, and it would be nice to see what this text said.
The History of the Kings of Judaea, by Jesus Justus would be another fine read. Jusus Justus was an enemy of Josephus, just like Jesus of Gamala was (in fact, they are likely to be the same person).

And why mention texts that are no longer extant? Because it depends when they were destroyed. If they were not fully erradicated until the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century, then heretical texts like the Talmud and Toledoth Yeshu may have been based upon these contemporary accounts. And since these 'presumed to be later' heretical texts contain very controversial and sometimes secret** details about Jesus, it is highly likely they were indeed based on earlier documents.

** Details like the involvement of Queen Helena, the assertion that Jesus was lame and blind in one eye (post crucifixion), and the covert reference to these people as 'locusts'.


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10-03-2013, 01:31 PM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
Just to add a not about the Talmud and Toldot Yeshu - one is about 4th century (Depending if you are going Babylonian or Jerusalem version), and Toldolt Yeshu is many centuries later. Obviously neither were contemporary, and the later being a lampoon of the entire Christian faith, with a flying jesus getting pissed out of the sky. I dounbt that really happened, nor is it proof that Jesus ever existed and more than my saying "Jesus was a wanker" and someone saying "See! He believes in Jesus!"

Yeshu, as a name isn't real (nobody else in Rabbinical literature was called that), but it is a mocking word of no meaning, taking away the letter "ayin" to represent the taking away of the core root word: salvation.

more of this at http://www.kosherjudaism.com/yeshu.pdf

As noted in that PDF, only the Babylonian text has about half a dozen references, and they are all from two specific Rabbis who lived during the time of Constantine, so obviously they were just making fun, mocking, and not confirming.
You'd think they would have had a tradition of that big zombie fest on Passover night..."Brains...."

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10-03-2013, 10:47 PM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(10-03-2013 01:31 PM)EGross Wrote:  Just to add a not about the Talmud and Toldot Yeshu - one is about 4th century (Depending if you are going Babylonian or Jerusalem version), and Toldolt Yeshu is many centuries later. Obviously neither were contemporary, and the later being a lampoon of the entire Christian faith, with a flying jesus getting pissed out of the sky. I dounbt that really happened, nor is it proof that Jesus ever existed and more than my saying "Jesus was a wanker" and someone saying "See! He believes in Jesus!"

Yeshu, as a name isn't real (nobody else in Rabbinical literature was called that), but it is a mocking word of no meaning, taking away the letter "ayin" to represent the taking away of the core root word: salvation.

more of this at http://www.kosherjudaism.com/yeshu.pdf

As noted in that PDF, only the Babylonian text has about half a dozen references, and they are all from two specific Rabbis who lived during the time of Constantine, so obviously they were just making fun, mocking, and not confirming.
You'd think they would have had a tradition of that big zombie fest on Passover night..."Brains...."


Thanks for the link.

Whaddya thoughts on this Ralph? Has the guy who wrote the link got it wrong?
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11-03-2013, 01:17 AM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
As an aside, I am the author of the PDF. And yes, I know that there are a couple of mis-spelled words and at least 2 grammatical errors, but the content is still good! Big Grin

“I've done everything the Bible says — even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff!"— Ned Flanders
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11-03-2013, 01:34 AM (This post was last modified: 11-03-2013 01:38 AM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(11-03-2013 01:17 AM)EGross Wrote:  As an aside, I am the author of the PDF. And yes, I know that there are a couple of mis-spelled words and at least 2 grammatical errors, but the content is still good! Big Grin
Wow! You know your stuff.

Please post more!!!!!!!!! Please tell us more about yourself.
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11-03-2013, 09:17 AM (This post was last modified: 11-03-2013 12:25 PM by ralphellis.)
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
(10-03-2013 01:31 PM)EGross Wrote:  Just to add a not about the Talmud and Toldot Yeshu - one is about 4th century (Depending if you are going Babylonian or Jerusalem version), and Toldolt Yeshu is many centuries later. Obviously neither were contemporary, and the later being a lampoon of the entire Christian faith, with a flying jesus getting pissed out of the sky. I dounbt that really happened, nor is it proof that Jesus ever existed and more than my saying "Jesus was a wanker" and someone saying "See! He believes in Jesus!"

Yeshu, as a name isn't real (nobody else in Rabbinical literature was called that), but it is a mocking word of no meaning, taking away the letter "ayin" to represent the taking away of the core root word: salvation.

more of this at http://www.kosherjudaism.com/yeshu.pdf

As noted in that PDF, only the Babylonian text has about half a dozen references, and they are all from two specific Rabbis who lived during the time of Constantine, so obviously they were just making fun, mocking, and not confirming.
You'd think they would have had a tradition of that big zombie fest on Passover night..."Brains...."


In my opinion:

You are right that 'Jesus ' did not come from Yeshu. In reality, it is a Parthio-Aramaic name derived from Izas, or Izates, a family name of the Edessan monarchy.

Not sure I agree with your association of Ha Notzri (the Nazarene) with Christianity. Christianity came from the Church of Saul, not the Nazarene Church of Jesus. Nazarene belief was centered more on astrology and the hermaphrodite 'Primaeval Adam', who can perhaps be associated with Osiris (or even, more provokatively, with Pharaoh Akhenaton). This is why Jesus asked for his disciples to be castrated, because they could then mimic the Primaeval Adam. (Math 19:12) The reports we have ov Nazarenes may have been contrarian mockery, but the Nazarene were known as the tossers of testicles. And we know that this was most probably true bacause Emperor Elagabalus, who was of the same lineage, tried to do the same thing.


Toledoth Yeshu.

Regards the Toledoth Yeshu, yes it is overt mockery, but it also contains elements of older traditions (as does the Vulgate Cycle's history of Joseph of Arimathaea). The reason I took some elements of the Toledoth seriously, is because it contains a very bizarre and very occult reference to the 'Locust Mockery' for the Edessan (Adiabene) family (ie, for Jesus himself, as the leader of the Jewish Revolt). The only other texts that know of this mockery, are the Acts of the Apostles and the Talmud. Check out the crucifixion scene for Jesus in the Toledoth, and see what you think.

The author of Toledoth was in on the 'big secret', that Jesus was related to the Edessan royalty, which is why this text is important. Then, wonder why the author of Toledoth said that Jesus was tried by Queen Helena, and not Pontius Pilate. Also wonder why this author linked Jesus to the leadership of the Jewish Revolt. -

The Toledoth author was in on FOUR big secrets - he knew the Locust Mockery, he knew of the link to Edessa-Adiabene, he knew the true biblical chronology (AD 70), and he knew that Jesus led the Jewish Revolt too.

So what do we make of the Toledoth??

In reality, the Toledoth Yesu was the Monty Python or the Life of Brian of its day. If you want to conceal a big sectret, and not get burned at the stake for covertly revealing it, you hide it in a cloak of ridiculous levity. And that is what the Toledoth did.



Talmud.

I would contend that the lying Gehazi is actually a hypocorism for Saul (Josephus) rather than Jesus - the deceitful Gehazi who returned to collet the money that Jesus (Elisha) had refused. One of the versions about the flight into Egypt has Yeshu pushing Gehazi away (ie, Jesus pushing Saul-Josephus away, and thus precipitating the Jewish Revolt). And if you read that 'Egypt' section again, we have.

The slaughter of the priesthood 'children', by the 'evil' king (the children of Israel)
The flight of Jesus to Egypt.
The return from Egypt
The stay in an Inn.

This is a parody or an alternative version of the Nativity for Jesus, but based upon a much older and mature Jesus, who was fleeing from Jannai (said to be Agrippa) because he was a priest (or high priest) of Jerusalem.


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11-03-2013, 10:18 AM
RE: ANY contemporary evidence for Jesus ?
I love the Monty Python reference. And I believe it is pretty close to the truth.

No big disagreements in what was posted. As I noted, while the Toldot Yeshu came from a later source, apparently Spanish, around the year 1000, there is evidence from the Cairo ganeiza that it a buffed up version from earlier sources - post Amoraic (5th century or later), and only in peices.

I picked up, some time ago, an Issue from Tarbitz, published from Hebrew University here in Israel. And an author (Yaakov Deutsch) of one of the Articles "Testimonies on an earlier form of Toldot Yeshu" makes some excellent points, not only about the development of the story and the age, but comparing it's evolution with the change in cultures. He shows the geneiza fragments side-by-side with the mondern version . It's about 20 pages in Hebrew. If I get bored enough, and the author doesn't mind, I'll translate and post. Warning: It's an acedemic paper!

We also need to remember that a Geneiza contains not only treasures, but trash. If an item contains even one word for God, it goes in a ganeiza, even if it's a youth learning how to be a scribe. But these finds, especially the Cairo one which was huge, are great in what historical value we can give them.

Now, as far as Notzri goes, it is a 3rd-4th century use 8 times by the Sages, as found in the oldest (non-burnt) versions of the Bavli. You don't find it in any earlier texts, and not at all in the Jerusalem talmud. So Notzri too may be a swipe, combining the word for Nazerene (from Nazereth), Nazir (long haired and no drinking/eating from the grape), and Netzer (a metaphor for the descendant of Yishai, a Moshiach (David was also referred to in this way, so "son of David" gets it too). So I do not know if the Rabbis made it up, or it was something they heard others call them, or if the Jews who converted over made it up, or the jews who despised the converts assigned it to just them.

Although it is a term that sticks, even today, when speaking of Christians.

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“I've done everything the Bible says — even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff!"— Ned Flanders
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