Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
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21-09-2015, 02:18 PM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
(21-09-2015 02:06 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(21-09-2015 01:59 PM)DLJ Wrote:  Although there was that one time ... the Dirty Lying Jew thing.

Seriously wanted to punch that guy in the nuts. Angry

Tell me!! Sadcryface2
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21-09-2015, 02:24 PM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
(21-09-2015 02:18 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(21-09-2015 02:06 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Seriously wanted to punch that guy in the nuts. Angry

Tell me!! Sadcryface2

The first three posts here

It's been a lonely battle. I'm glad you're here.

Big Grin

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21-09-2015, 03:44 PM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
(21-09-2015 02:24 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(21-09-2015 02:18 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Tell me!! Sadcryface2

The first three posts here

It's been a lonely battle. I'm glad you're here.

Big Grin

Why you had to post that fucken link? Angry

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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23-09-2015, 06:45 AM (This post was last modified: 23-09-2015 07:02 AM by Searcher777.)
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
To:goodwithoutgod

mmmmmm yes, welcome dear friend. I would like to enter discourse with you. I can blow your mind as well....with irrefutable evidence that destroys the story of christianity.(No my friend it can’t becuase you put your,belief in what you see,but I put my belief throught faith) I actually have a degree in religious studies with specialization in christianity...and guess where I got it? Saint Leo University.(but you didn’t take it seriously did you?) So trust me, I speak your language fluently, and I will use not a single atheist source to refute you,(you use,your athiest skill’s against me thats fine) I will instead use christian university's own textbooks, and my indepth knowledge of biblical historicity to eviscerate your infection of faith.(I know it’s history my friend) Come, join me, I have much to teach you.(Do I not know,tha what will teach me,will only send me to hell) How you ask? BY clicking the below link. It takes you to an area of our forum called the boxing ring. Where you and I can enter uninterrupted debate one on one. (No,you can say it over here,am not wasting my time,with a person who is just looking for way’s to be ignorant)Everyone can watch, but no one can enter.(what about the moderator,they of course can) Just start a new thread there, something like "Hesso challenges GWG to a debate". I am busy, but trust me, I will be there.(I planning one in athiest and theists thread) I see you quote Mark...are you aware that the synoptic gospels were not actually written by their namesakes?(A brief look at any harmony of the Gospels will immediately point out an obvious fact - namely, Matthew, Mark, and Luke go over a lot of the same ground, but John is very different.
For the uninitiated, a harmony of the Gospels is a work that attempts to show the life of Christ in chronological order, pointing of the reference texts.
The number of parables and stories that occur in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, which do not occur in John, is just too great.
Note, for example, just the miracles of Christ.
Miracle Matthew Mark Luke JohnThe nobleman's son at Capernaum healed 4:46-54The demoniac in the synagogue healed 1:21-28 4:31-37 Simon's wife's mother healed 8:14-17 1:29-34 4:38-41 Circuit round Galilee 4:23-25 1:35-39 4:42-44 Healing a leper 8:1-4 1:40-45 5:12-16 Christ stills the storm 8:18-27 4:35-41 8:22-25 Demoniacs in Gadarenes 8:28-34 5:1-20 8:26-39 Jairus' daughter. Woman healed 9:18-26 5:21-43 8:40-56 Blind men and demoniac 9:27-34 Healing the paralytic 9:1-8 2:1-12 5:17-26 Matthew the publican 9:9-13 2:13-17 5:27-32 "Thy disciples fast not" 9:14-17 2:18-22 5:33-39
Because these three seem to have the 'same view' on a lot of matters, they have been called the "synoptic" Gospels, from the Greek syn (same) and optic (relating to sight or view).
Famed exegete Daniel Wallace goes into detail on the so-called Synoptic Problem, asking how it is that three Gospel writers could include so much that is so similar, in even the same order. While he does not deny inspiration by the Holy Spirit, he shows how the complete agreement would not really fit with three men independently relating the same facts, without some form of collaboration or borrowing. A close reading of parenthetical remarks or the details which are included in some accounts but not others would seem to indicate that the authors were aware of the other works, and expected their audience to do the same.
Given this similarity, the fun question then becomes, who borrowed from whom?
Traditionally, Matthew was viewed as the first Gospel, hence its location first in the New Testament canon. That said, beginning with Schleiermacher in the early 1800s, the idea that Mark was actually the first began to take hold.
The rules of hermeneutics that are used to reconstruct "the original wording" (remember these were hand-copied manuscripts and minor variations happened) usually suggest that when two possible variations are presented, "the harder meaning is to be preferred." In other words, if a copyist is reading sourcing material and either re-copying it or re-using it, it is far more likely that a copyist would harmonize what is said with an overall theology, rather than introduce something that makes the existing theology less pure and pristine. Since Mark's Gospel typically includes some of the most human aspects of Jesus (the Messianic secret, the abrupt ending, etc...), the principle is taken to a macro level, thus giving Mark "temporal first place."
The synoptic "problem" does not seek to deny "Inspiration," but does seek to create an historical chain of events that tells us how our Gospels came to be.)
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23-09-2015, 06:47 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
I can prove that. Mark is an interesting fable isn't it? Since Mark is the oldest of the synoptic gospels, of which the authors of Matthew, and Luke based their stories. Scholars agree that the last 12 verses of Mark, are highly dubious and are considered interpolations.(answered above) The earliest ancient documents of Mark end right after the women find the empty tomb. This means that in the first biography, on which the others based their reports, there is no post-resurrection appearance or ascension of jesus.( uhoh. Mark (written 60 to 75 CE) was NOT written by the Mark of Christian tradition (that means story). Most modern scholars reject the tradition which ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist, the companion of Peter, and regard it as the work of an unknown author working with various sources including collections of miracle stories, controversy stories, parables, and a passion narrative.(One of the things the atheists like to destroy is the New Testament. Without anything positive to offer themselves, they feel obliged to de-construct the authority of the New Testament if they can. A favorite way to do this is to try to show that the New Testament is a much edited, late cut and paste job by people unknown which has very little to do with the historical Jesus.
One of the books they like to attack is the Gospel of Mark. This is because most scholars believe Mark is the earliest gospel written and the one which is closest to the historical Jesus.If they can undermine Mark the rest of the New Testament can be dismissed.
However, it’s not very easy to show that Mark is written by an unknown later editor. There are troublesome details in the gospel which can’t be explained if the gospel is a late composition.
The traditional account is that the Gospel of Mark was written by John Mark– the companion of Paul (Acts 12:25) the cousin of Barnabas (Col.4:10) and the companion of Peter (I Pt.5:13). The traditional account is that the gospel was written to the Christians in the church of Rome, that it recounted Peter’s own eyewitness stories of Jesus, and that it was completed either before Peter’s death in Rome in the persecutions under Nero in the year 65 or just after–before the year 70 AD.
What is the evidence for this? First of all we have what is called the “internal evidence” this is linguistic evidence from the Gospel of Mark itself. The document is written in a non-literary style indicating that it was composed by person of only moderate education. It is a bread and butter document–the author not attempting (or capable of) a high literary style. Had the gospel been composed by a later author it would have been written in a more exalted literary style instead of the ordinary down to earth story telling immediacy we have in the gospel.
Although it is written in koine Greek, the linguistic syntax and usage indicate someone who did not have Greek as a first language. The author’s native tongue was probably Aramaic. This fits with a companion of Jesus and his disciples, and it is something which would be difficult to forge. If the work is a later composition by a Roman Christian we would not expect the Aramaic undertones.
In addition to this, the author interrupts the flow of the narrative to insert vivid details which could only have been known (or considered interesting) to eyewitnesses or to particular people who were part of the church community to whom it is addressed. Why, for example, would a later editor refer to “Rufus and Alexander” (Mk.15:21) being the sons of Simon of Cyrene unless the audience for the gospel knew who Rufus and Alexander were? Even if the author were someone other than John Mark it still shows that the gospel had to have been written within the lifetime of the sons of Simon of Cyrene.
To put the facts together, let’s imagine (for the sake of argument) that Rufus and Alexander were mere boys when their father carried the cross for Jesus. Let’s say they were eight and ten years old. That was around the year 30 AD. By the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD they would have been 48 and 50 years old. They could have lived for another twenty years, but even then the latest date for the gospel’s composition would be the year 90. It’s speculation, but the mention of Rufus and Alexander shows that what the gospel cannot be is a composition later than the turn of the first century.
The “external evidence” is from documentary sources outside the gospel itself. Although the original manuscripts do not say the gospel is by Mark, copies from the 2nd century start to include Marks’ name. The witness to Mark’s authorship, and his link with Peter and his audience being the church at Rome is virtually universal. The earliest of these witnesses is Papias of Hieropolis quoted by the historian Eusebius. Furthermore, Papias is quoting an earlier source than himself. Other witnesses from the church fathers are Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, and Origen. Jimmy Akin has more detail on the earliest external witness to Mark’s authorship here.
In addition to these early witnesses to Mark’s gospel we have to take into account certain unusual features. Those who argue for a late date and an authorship other than Mark need to explain why no name was attached to the gospel at first. If the gospel was written by someone else who wanted it to be taken as authentic, then it would have had an apostle’s name attached to it as we see in the gnostic gospels of “Philip”, “Thomas” and “Judas”. There is no name attached. If the gospel was anonymous and later editors wanted to attach a name later to give the gospel weight they would surely have given an apostle’s name–and not the name of Mark who was not an apostle.)
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23-09-2015, 06:48 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
So a little taste of the lessons ahead for you.(Are you sure?) Since christianity is based on the belief that jesus "the christ" from Nazareth was the son of the abrahamic faith based god(correct), and died for our sins under the Incarnation and Atonement theory, would it surprise you to know that not one single person who EVER wrote of jesus knew him? uhoh, it is all based on stories, and people LOVE to tell stories don't they?...and No,(January 11, 49 B.C. is one of the most famous dates in the history of ancient Rome, even of the ancient world. On that date Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon River, committing himself and his followers to civil war. Few, if any, historians doubt that the event happened. On the other hand, numerous skeptics claim that the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are myth and have no basis in historical fact. Yet, as historian Paul Merkley pointed out two decades ago in his article, "The Gospels as Historical Testimony," far less historical evidence exists for the crossing of the Rubicon than does for the events depicted in the Gospels:
There are no firsthand testimonies to Caesar’s having crossed the Rubicon (wherever it was). Caesar himself makes no mention in his memoirs of crossing any river. Four historians belonging to the next two or three generations do mention a Rubicon River, and claim that Caesar crossed it. They are: Velleius Paterculus (c.19 B.C.–c.A.D. 30); Plutarch (c.A.D. 46–120); Suetonius (75–160); and Appian (second century). All of these evidently depended on the one published eyewitness account, that of Asinius Pollio (76 B.C.–c. A.D. 4)—which account has disappeared without a trace. No manuscript copies for any of these secondary sources is to be found earlier than several hundred years after their composition. (The Evangelical Quarterly 58, 319-336)
Merkley observed that those skeptics who either scoff at the historical reliability of the Gospels or reject them outright as "myth" do so without much, if any, regard for the nature of history in general and the contents of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John in particular.
The Distinctive Sign
So, are the four Gospels "myth"? Can they be trusted as historical records? If Christianity is about "having faith," do such questions really matter? The latter question is, I hope, easy to answer: Yes, it obviously matters very much if the narratives and discourses recorded by the four evangelists are about real people and historical events. Pope Benedict XVI, in his book Jesus of Nazareth, offers this succinct explanation:
For it is of the very essence of biblical faith to be about real historical events. It does not tell stories symbolizing suprahistorical truths, but is based on history, history that took place here on this earth. The factum historum (historical fact) is not an interchangeable symbolic cipher for biblical faith, but the foundation on which it stands: Et incarnates est —when we say these words, we acknowledge God’s actual entry into real history. (Jesus of Nazareth, xv)
Christianity, more than any other religion, is rooted in history and makes strong—even shocking—claims about historical events, most notably that God became man and dwelt among us. Of course, some Christians of a less-than-orthodox persuasion are content to discard large chunks of the Gospels as unnecessary (or even "offensive") or to interpret as "mythological" or "metaphorical" nearly each and every event and belief described therein. But such is not the belief of the Catholic Church (or of the Eastern Orthodox churches and most conservative Protestants). As the Catechism of the Catholic Churchflatly states: "Belief in the true Incarnation of the Son of God is the distinctive sign of Christian faith" (CCC 463).
It is, ultimately, this distinctive sign—the conviction that Jesus of Nazareth was and is truly God and man—that is the focal point of attacks on the historical credibility of the Gospels and the New Testament. Over the past few centuries many historians and theologians have sought to uncover the "historical Jesus" and to peel away the many layers of what they believed were legend and theological accretion. Many abandoned hope that any historical (never mind theological) fact could be extracted from the Gospels.
A Work of Fiction
There were many complex reasons for this state of affairs, one of them being the Enlightenment-era doctrine that purely scientific, objective history could not only be found, but was necessary. Empirical data became for many scholars—men such as Isaac Newton, Francis Bacon, and René Descartes—the key to all scholarship, including the study of history. It became the accepted wisdom that supernatural or miraculous elements could not be considered scientific and truly historical and that they had to be rejected. Anything outside the realm of empirical data was liable to be labeled "myth" and "legend."
Fast-forward to our day. The results of this approach are all around us, both in the scholarly and popular realm. Not long ago, a young filmmaker named Brian Flemming produced a documentary titled The God Who Wasn’t There. Its purpose, he explained in an interview, is to demonstrate that the "biblical Jesus" is a myth. Asked to summarize the evidence for this stance, Flemming explained:
It’s more a matter of demonstrating a positive than a negative, and the positive is that early Christians appeared not to have believed in a historical Jesus. If the very first Christians appear to believe in a mythical Christ, and only later did "historical" details get added bit by bit, that is not consistent with the real man actually existing. . . . I would say that he is a myth in the same way that many other characters people believed actually existed. Like William Tell is most likely a myth, according to many folklorists and many historians. Of course, [Jesus] is a very important myth. I think that he was invented a long time ago, and those stories have been passed on as if they are true. (David Ian Miller, "Finding My Religion," www.sfgate.com)
Here "myth" is synonymous with "fiction" or even "falsehood," reflecting the Enlightenment-era bias against anything bearing even trace amounts of the supernatural. "All I’m saying," remarked Flemming, "is that [Jesus] doesn’t exist, and it would be a healthy thing for Christians to look at the Bible as a work of fiction from which they can take inspiration rather than, you know, the authoritative word of God."
"Serious Unicorns"
Thus the Gospels, according to skeptics such as Flemming, are compilations of "nice stories" or "silly tales," just like stories about unicorns and the Easter Bunny. Some skeptics mock Christians for holding fearfully onto childish tales while the truly mature people (self-described by some as "brights") go about the business of making the world a better place. "Meanwhile, we should devote as much time to studying serious theology," stated well-known atheist Richard Dawkins in column in The Independent (Dec. 23, 1998), "as we devote to studying serious fairies and serious unicorns." Fellow God-basher Daniel Dennett, in his book Darwin’s Dangerous Idea, wrote,
The kindly God who lovingly fashioned each and every one of us and sprinkled the sky with shining stars for our delight—that God is, like Santa Claus, a myth of childhood, not anything [that] a sane, undeluded adult could literally believe in. That God must either be turned into a symbol for something less concrete or abandoned altogether. (18)
 Smarter than Thou
Such rhetoric rests both on the assumption that the Gospels are fanciful myth and that the authors of the New Testament (and their readers) were clueless about the difference between historical events and fictional stories. There is an overbearing sense of chronological snobbery at work: We are smarter than people who lived 2,000 years ago. Yet the Second Epistle of Peter demonstrates a clear understanding of the difference between myth and verified historical events: "For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty" (2 Pet. 1:16). The opening verses of Luke’s Gospel indicate that the author undertook the task of writing about real people and events:
Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things which have been accomplished among us, just as they were delivered to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may know the truth concerning the things of which you have been informed. (Luke 1:1-4)
And the fourth Gospel concludes with similar remarks:
This is the disciple who is bearing witness to these things, and who has written these things; and we know that his testimony is true. But there are also many other things which Jesus did; were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. (John 21:24-25)
These quotations do not, of course, prove the historicity of the New Testament. Rather, they suggest that the authors, far from being knuckle-dragging simpletons, set about to write works depicting real people and events—especially since they believed the narratives they recounted had meaning only if they really did occur. As such, their historical content should be judged not against tales of unicorns and Easter bunnies, but against other first-century works of history and historical narrative.
What Is a Gospel?
The word gospel comes from the Greek word euangelion, meaning "good news" and refers to the message of Christian belief in the person of Jesus Christ. There has been much scholarly debate about the genre of "gospel" and how it might relate to other forms of writings found in first-century Palestine and the larger ancient world. Obviously, they do contain biographical details, and some scholars have argued in recent years that the gospels are as biographical in nature as anything in the ancient Greco-Roman world.
"The majority of recent specialized studies," writes Evangelical biblical scholar Craig L. Blomberg in Making Sense of the New Testament, "has recognized that the closest parallels are found among the comparatively trustworthy histories and biographies of writers like the Jewish historian Josephus, and the Greek historians Herodotus and Thucydides" (28). In his commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, Catholic theologian and biblical scholar Erasmo Leiva-Merikakis writes:
We must conclude, then, that the genre of the Gospel is not that of pure "history"; but neither is it that of myth, fairy tale, or legend. In fact, evangelion constitutes a genre all its own, a surprising novelty in the literature of the ancient world. Matthew does not seek to be "objective" in a scientific or legal sense. He is writing as one whose life has been drastically changed by the encounter with Jesus of Nazareth. Hence, he is proposing to his listeners an objective reality of history, but offered as kerygma, that is, as a proclamation that bears personal witness to the radical difference that reality has already made in his life. (Fire of Mercy, Heart of the Word, Vol. II: Meditations on the Gospel According to St. Matthew, 44)
Many early Christian authors, such as Justin Martyr, referred to the Gospels as memoirs of the apostles. Blomberg has used the descriptive "theological biographies," which captures well the supernatural and human elements found within them.
The Historical Evidence
Those supernatural elements—especially the miracles of Jesus and his claims to divinity—are, as we’ve noted, why skeptics call the Gospels "myth" while remaining unruffled about anything written about Julius Caesar and the Rubicon by Velleius Paterculus, Plutarch, Suetonius, and Appian. Yes, Suetonius did write in his account (Lives of the Twelve Caesars) about "an apparition of superhuman size and beauty . . . sitting on the river bank, playing a reed pipe" who persuaded Caesar to cross the river, but it has not seemed to undermine the belief that Caesar did indeed cross the Rubicon on January 11, 49 B.C. But, for the sake of argument, let’s set aside the theological claims found in the New Testament and take a brief look at the sort of data a historian might examine in gauging the reliability and accuracy of an ancient manuscript.
First, there is the sheer number of ancient copies of the New Testament. There are close to 5,700 full or partial Greek New Testament manuscripts in existence. Most of these date from between the second to 16th century, with the oldest, known as Papyrus 52 (which contains John 18), dating from around A.D. 100–150. By comparison, the average work by a classical author—such as Tacitus (c. A.D. 56–c. 120), Pliny the Younger (A.D. 61–113), Livy (59 B.C.–A.D. 17), and Thucydides (460–395 B.C.)—has about 20 extant manuscripts, the earliest copy usually several centuries newer than the original. For example, the earliest copy of works by the prominent Roman historian Suetonius (A.D. 75–130) date to A.D. 950—over 800 years after the original manuscripts had been written.
In addition to the thousands of Greek manuscripts, there are an additional 10,000 Latin manuscripts, and thousands of additional manuscripts in Syriac, Aramaic, and Coptic, for a total of about 24,000 full or partial manuscripts of the New Testament. And then there are the estimated one million quotes from the New Testament in the writings of the Church Fathers (A.D. 150–1300). Obviously, the more manuscripts that are available, the better scholars are able to assess accurately what the original manuscripts contained and to correct errors that may exist in various copies.
When Were They Written?
Closely related is the matter of dating. While debate continues as to the exact dating of the Gospels, few biblical scholars believe that any of the four works were written after the end of the first century. "Liberal New Testament scholars today," writes Blomberg, "tend to put Mark a few years one side or the other of A.D. 70, Matthew and Luke–Acts sometime in the 80s, and John in the 90s" (Making Sense of the New Testament, 25). Meanwhile, many conservative scholars date the synoptic Gospels (and Acts) in the 60s and John in the 90s. That means, simply, that there exist four accounts of key events in Jesus’ life written within 30 to 60 years after his Crucifixion—and this within a culture that placed a strong emphasis on the role and place of an accurate oral tradition. Anyone who denies that Jesus existed or who claims that the Gospels are filled with historical errors or fabrications will, in good conscience, have to explain why they don’t make the same assessment about the historical works of Pliny the Younger, Suetonius, Julius Caesar, Livy, Josephus, Tacitus, and other classical authors.
Secondly, historical details are found in the Gospels and the other books of the New Testament. These include numerous mentions of secular rulers and leaders (Caesar Augustus, Pontius Pilate, Herod, Felix, Archelaus, Agrippa, Gallio), as well as Jewish leaders (Caiaphas, Ananias)—the sort of names unlikely to be used inaccurately or even to show up in a "myth." Anglican scholar Paul Barnett, in Is The New Testament Reliable? , provides several pages’ worth of intersections between biblical and non-biblical sources regarding historical events and persons. "Christian sources contribute, on an equal footing with non-Christian sources," he observes, "pieces of information that form part of the fabric of known history. In matters of historical detail, the Christian writers are as valuable to the historian as the non-Christian" (167).
Then there are the specifically Jewish details, including references to and descriptions of festivals, religious traditions, farming and fishing equipment, buildings, trades, social structures, and religious hierarchies. As numerous books and articles have shown in recent decades, the beliefs and ideas found in the Gospels accurately reflect a first-century Jewish context. All of this is important in responding to the claim that the Gospels were written by authors who used Greek and Egyptian myths to create a supernatural man-god out of the faint outline of a lowly Jewish carpenter.
Pay Dirt
Various modern archeological discoveries have validated specific details found in the Gospels:
In 1961 a mosaic from the third century was found in Caesarea Maritima that had the name "Nazareth" in it. This is the first known ancient non-biblical reference to Nazareth.
Coins with the names of the Herod family have been discovered, including the names of Herod the king, Herod the tetrarch of Galilee (who killed John the Baptist), Herod Agrippa I (who killed James Zebedee), and Herod Agrippa II (before whom Paul testified).
In 1990 an ossuary was found inscribed with the Aramaic words, "Joseph son of Caiaphas," believed to be a reference to the high priest Caiaphas.
In 1968 an ossuary was discovered near Jerusalem bearing the bones of a man who had been executed by crucifixion in the first century. These are the only known remains of a man crucified in Roman Palestine, and verify the descriptions given in the Gospels of Jesus’ Crucifixion.
In June 1961 Italian archaeologists excavating an ancient Roman amphitheatre near Caesarea-on-the-Sea (Maritima) uncovered a limestone block. On its face is an inscription (part of a larger dedication to Tiberius Caesar) that reads: "Pontius Pilate, Prefect of Judaea."
Numerous other finds continue to demolish the notion that the Gospels are mythologies filled with fictional names and events.
The External Evidence
Third, there are extra-biblical, ancient references to Jesus and early Christianity. Although the number of non-Christian Roman writings from the first half of the first century is quite small (just a few volumes), there are a couple of significant references.
Writing to the Emperor Trajan around A.D. 112, Pliny the Younger reported on the trials of certain Christians arrested by the Romans. He noted that those who are "really Christians" would never curse Christ:
They asserted, however, that the sum and substance of their fault or error had been that they were accustomed to meet on a fixed day before dawn and sing responsively a hymn to Christ as to a god, and to bind themselves by oath, not to some crime, but not to commit fraud, theft, or adultery, not falsify their trust, nor to refuse to return a trust when called upon to do so. (Letters, Book 10, Letter 96)
The historian Tacitus, in his Annals —considered by historians to be one the finest works of ancient Roman history—mentioned how the Emperor Nero, following the fire in Rome in A.D. 64, persecuted Christians in order to draw attention away from himself. The passage is noteworthy as an unfriendly source because although Tacitus thought Nero was appalling, he also despised the foreign and, to him, superstitious religion of Christianity:
Hence to suppress the rumor, he falsely charged with the guilt, and punished Christians, who were hated for their enormities. Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius: but the pernicious superstition, repressed for a time broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief originated, but through the city of Rome also, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their center and become popular. (Annals, 15:44)
Robert E. Van Voorst, author of Jesus Outside the New Testament, offers a detailed analysis of scholarly controversies about this passage, and then states, "Of all the Roman authors, Tacitus gives us the most precise information about Christ" (45). This includes Tacitus’s understanding that "Christus"—not Paul or someone else—was the founder of the Christian movement. He notes that Christ was executed under Pilate during the reign of Tiberius, and that Judea was the source of the Christian movement. All of which further confirms the historical reliability of the Gospels.
Conclusion
As Pope Benedict XVI noted in his book on Jesus, there is much that is good about historical-critical and other scientific methods of studying Scripture. But these approaches have limits. "Neither the individual books of Holy Scripture nor the Scripture as a whole are simply a piece of literature" (Jesus of Nazareth, xx).
The Christian apologist should not be embarrassed to admit that he has a certain bias when it comes to reading and understanding the Gospels. He should point out that everyone has biases, and that the skeptic’s bias against the supernatural and the miraculous shapes how he reads and understands history, especially the historical data found in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The Christian, in other words, should have no problem with an honest historical examination of the Gospels. But why do so many skeptics shy away from a candid examination of their philosophical biases? That is the question apologists should pose and demand (politely, of course) to be answered.)
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23-09-2015, 06:49 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
Paul doesn't count, because Paul was the father of the cult, and had motive to lie once their leader was unceremoniously nailed to a piece of wood like a common criminal. His assertion that christ, post-resurrection (by the way, an empty tomb does not a resurrection make),(Your calling St Paul a father of cult but,if he was God would not allow his gospel to be in the Bible.

"Saint Paul" redirects here. For other uses, see Saint Paul (disambiguation).
Paul the Apostle (Greek: Παῦλος Paulos; c. 5 – c. 67), originally known as Saul of Tarsus (Hebrew:שאול התרסי‎; Greek: Σαῦλος Ταρσεύς Saulos Tarseus),[1][2] was an apostle (though not one of the Twelve Apostles) who taught the gospel of Christ to the first-century world.[7] He is generally considered one of the most important figures of the Apostolic Age.[8][9] In the mid-30s to the mid-50s, he founded several churches in Asia Minor and Europe. Paul took advantage of his status as both a Jew and a Roman citizento minister to both Jewish and Roman audiences.
According to writings in the New Testament Paul, who was called Saul at the first, was dedicated to thepersecution of the early disciples of Jesus in the area of Jerusalem.[10] In the narrative of the book of Acts, while Paul was traveling on the road from Jerusalem to Damascus on a mission to "bring them which were there bound unto Jerusalem", the resurrected Jesus appeared to him in a great light. He was struck blind, but after three days his sight was restored by Ananias of Damascus, and Paul began to preach that Jesus of Nazareth is the Jewish Messiah and the Son of God.[11] Approximately half of the book of Acts deals with Paul's life and works.
Fourteen of the twenty-seven books in the New Testament have traditionally been attributed to Paul. Seven of the epistles are undisputed by scholars as being authentic, with varying degrees of argument about the remainder. The Pauline authorship of the Epistle to the Hebrews, already doubted in the 2nd and 3rd centuries[12] but almost unquestioningly accepted from the 5th to the 16th centuries,[13] is now almost universally rejected by scholars.[14] The other six are believed by some scholars to have come from followers writing in his name, using material from Paul's surviving letters and letters written by him that no longer survive.[7][8][15] Other scholars argue that the idea of a pseudonymous author for the disputed epistles raises many problems.[16]
Today, Paul's epistles continue to be vital roots of the theology, worship, and pastoral life in the Catholic and Protestant traditions of the West, and the Orthodox traditions of the East.[17] Among that of many other apostles and missionaries involved in the spread of the Christian faith,[7] Paul's influence on Christian thought and practice has been characterized as being as "profound as it is pervasive".Augustine of Hippo developed Paul's idea that salvation is based on faith and not "works of the law".Martin Luther's interpretation of Paul's writings influenced Luther's doctrine of sola fide.
A native of Tarsus, the capital city in the Roman province of Cilicia,[5] Paul wrote that he was "a Hebrewborn of Hebrews", a Pharisee,[31] and one who advanced in Judaism beyond many of his peers. He also wrote that he was "unmarried," at least as early as his writing of I Corinthians 7:8, however some hold that he may have been married prior to that, due to certain textual analyses of his writings,[32] and other similar rationale. His initial reaction to the newly formed Christian movement was to zealously persecute its early followers and to violently attempt to destroy the movement. Paul's dramatic conversion while on the road to Damascus was clearly a life-altering event for him, changing him from being one of the early movement's most ardent persecutors to being one of its most fervent supporters.[7]
After his conversion, Paul began to preach that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God.[33] His leadership, influence, and legacy led to the formation of communities dominated by Gentile groups that worshiped Jesus, adhered to the "Judaic moral code", but relaxed or abandoned the ritual and dietary teachings of the Law of Moses. He taught that these laws and rituals had either been fulfilled in the life of Christ or were symbolic precursors of Christ, though the exact relationship between Paul the Apostle and Judaismis still disputed. Paul taught of the life and works of Jesus Christ and his teaching of a New Covenantestablished through Jesus' death and resurrection. The New Testament does not record Paul's death.
The two main sources of information by which we have access to the earliest segments of Paul's career are the Bible's Book of Acts and the autobiographical elements of Paul's letters to the early church communities. Paul was likely born between the years of 5 BC and 5 AD.[34] The Book of Acts indicates that Paul was a Roman citizen by birth, more affirmatively describing his father as such, but some scholars have taken issue with the evidence presented by the text.[35][Acts 16:37][Acts 22:25-29]
His was a devout Jewish family in the city of Tarsus—one of the largest trade centers on the Mediterranean coast.[36] It had been in existence several hundred years prior to his birth. It was renowned for its university, one in which students could receive a superior education. During the time of Alexander the Great, who died in 323 BC, Tarsus was the most influential city in Asia Minor.[37]
In his letters, Paul reflected heavily from his knowledge of Stoic philosophy, using Stoic terms and metaphors to assist his new Gentile converts in their understanding of the revealed word of God.[38]
He would also rely heavily on the training he received concerning the law and the prophets, utilizing this knowledge to convince his Jewish countrymen of the unity of past Old Testament prophecy and covenants with the fulfilling of these in Jesus Christ. His wide spectrum of experiences and education gave the "Apostle to the Gentiles"[Rom. 1:5] [11:13] [Gal. 2:8] the tools which he later would use to effectively spread the Gospel and to establish the church solidly in many[39] parts of the Roman Empire.[40][unreliable source?]
Paul referred to himself as being "of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee".[Phil. 3:5]
The Bible reveals very little about Paul's family. Paul's nephew, his sister's son, is mentioned in Acts 23:16. Acts also quotes Paul indirectly referring to his father by saying he, Paul, was "a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee".[Acts 23:6] Paul refers to his mother in Romans 16:13 as among those at Rome. In Romans 16:7 he states that his relatives, Andronicus and Junia, were Christians before he was and were prominent among the apostles.
The family had a history of religious piety.[2 Timothy 1:3][41] Apparently the family lineage had been very attached to Pharisaic traditions and observances for generations.[Philippians 3:5-6] Young Saul learned how to make the mohair with which tents were made.[Acts 18:1-3] Later as a Christian missionary, that trade became a means of support for him, one that he could practice anywhere. It also was to become an initial connection with Priscilla and Aquila with whom he would partner in tentmaking[Acts 18:3] and later become very important teammates as fellow missionaries.[Rom. 16:4]
While he was still fairly young, he was sent to Jerusalem to receive his education at the school ofGamaliel,[Acts 22:3] one of the most noted rabbis in history.[contradiction] The Hillel school was noted for giving its students a balanced education, likely giving Paul broad exposure to classical literature, philosophy, and ethics.[40][unreliable source?] Some of his family may have resided in Jerusalem since later the son of one of his sisters saved his life there.[Acts 23:16] Nothing more is known of his background until he takes an active part in the martyrdom of Stephen.[Acts 7:58-60;22:20] Paul confesses that "beyond measure" he persecuted the church of God prior to his conversion.[Gal. 1:13-14] [Phil. 3:6] [Acts 8:1-3] Although we know from his biography and from Acts that Paul could speak Hebrew, modern scholarship suggests that Koine Greek was his first language.[42][43]
Conversion of Paul the Apostle
Paul's conversion can be dated to 31–36[44][45][46] by his reference to it in one of his letters. In Galatians 1:16 Paul writes that God "was pleased to reveal his son to me." In 1 Corinthians 15:8, as he lists the order in which Jesus appeared to his disciples after his resurrection, Paul writes, "last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also."
According to the account in Acts, it took place on the road to Damascus, where he reported having experienced a vision of the resurrected Jesus. The account says that "he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" Saul replied, "Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: [it is] hard for thee to kick against the pricks."[Acts 9:4-5] According to the account in Acts, he was blinded for three days and had to be led into Damascus by the hand. During these three days, Saul took no food or water and spent his time in prayer to God. WhenAnanias of Damascus arrived, he laid his hands on him and said: "Brother Saul, the Lord, [even] Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost."[Acts 9:17] His sight was restored, he got up and was baptized.[Acts 9:18] This story occurs only in Acts, not in the Pauline epistles.[47]
The author of Acts of the Apostles, likely learned of his conversion from Paul, from the church in Jerusalem, or from the church in Antioch.[48]
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23-09-2015, 06:50 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
appeared before 500 witnesses, the disciples, James and himself is uncorroborated, suspect, and lacking of any evidence besides his own made up story. When the first three Gospels—Matthew, Mark, and Luke—are compared, it is unmistakable that the accounts are very similar to one another in content and expression. As a result, Matthew, Mark, and Luke are referred to as the “Synoptic Gospels.” The word synoptic basically means “to see together with a common view.” The similarities among the Synoptic Gospels have led some to wonder if the Gospel authors had a common source, another written account of Christ’s birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection from which they obtained the material for their Gospels. The question of how to explain the similarities and differences among the Synoptic Gospels is called the Synoptic Problem.

Some argue that Matthew, Mark, and Luke are so similar that they must have used each other’s Gospels or another common source. This supposed “source” has been given the title “Q” from the German word quelle, which means “source.” Is there any evidence for a “Q” document? No, there is not. No portion or fragment of a “Q” document has ever been discovered. None of the early church fathers ever mentioned a Gospel “source” in their writings. “Q” is the invention of liberal “scholars” who deny the inspiration of the Bible. They believe the Bible to be nothing more than a work of literature, subject to the same criticism given to other works of literature. Again, there is no evidence whatsoever for a “Q” document—biblically, theologically, or historically.

If Matthew, Mark, and Luke did not use a “Q” document, why are their Gospels so similar? There are several possible explanations. It is possible that, whichever Gospel was written first (possibly Mark, although the church fathers reported that Matthew was written first), the other Gospel writers had access to it. There is absolutely no problem with the idea that Matthew and/or Luke copied some text from Mark’s Gospel and used it in their Gospels. Perhaps Luke had access to Mark and Matthew and used texts from both of them in his own Gospel. Luke 1:1–4 tells us, “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.”

Ultimately, the Synoptic “Problem” is not as big a problem as some try to make it out to be. The explanation as to why the Synoptic Gospels are so similar is that they are all inspired by the same Holy Spirit and are all written by people who witnessed or were told about the same events. The Gospel of Matthew was written by Matthew the apostle, one of the twelve who followed Jesus and were commissioned by Him. The Gospel of Mark was written by John Mark, a close associate of the apostle Peter, another one of the twelve. The Gospel of Luke was written by Luke, a close associate of the apostle Paul. Why would we not expect their accounts to be very similar to one another? Each of the Gospels is ultimately inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16–17; 2 Peter 1:20–21). Therefore, we should expect coherence and unity.
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23-09-2015, 06:50 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
But we can get into that in great detail later as I school you through the OT lie, the fictional moses, See video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Lix_A2rc2s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tgsEXQ_lkU
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23-09-2015, 06:52 AM
RE: Believe and now before it's too late.(With Science and Archaeology evidence for God)
the never happened global flood,
When the Bible refers to a worldwide Flood in Genesis 7–8, that’s exactly what it means. Not local, not metaphorical, not some crazy dream—the waters covered the whole earth. Don’t just take our word for it, though. Take a look at the evidence right beneath your feet.
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Evidence 1: Fossils of sea creatures high above sea level due to the ocean waters having flooded over the continents
We find fossils of sea creatures in rock layers that cover all the continents. For example, most of the rock layers in the walls of Grand Canyon (more than a mile above sea level) contain marine fossils. Fossilized shellfish are even found in the Himalayas.
Focus in: High & Dry Sea Creatures
Evidence 2: Rapid burial of plants and animals
We find extensive fossil “graveyards” and exquisitely preserved fossils. For example, billions of nautiloid fossils are found in a layer within the Redwall Limestone of Grand Canyon. This layer was deposited catastrophically by a massive flow of sediment (mostly lime sand). The chalk and coal beds of Europe and the United States, and the fish, ichthyosaurs, insects, and other fossils all around the world, testify of catastrophic destruction and burial.
Focus in: The World’s a Graveyard
Evidence 3: Rapidly deposited sediment layers spread across vast areas
We find rock layers that can be traced all the way across continents—even between continents—and physical features in those strata indicate they were deposited rapidly. For example, the Tapeats Sandstone and Redwall Limestone of Grand Canyon can be traced across the entire United States, up into Canada, and even across the Atlantic Ocean to England. The chalk beds of England (the white cliffs of Dover) can be traced across Europe into the Middle East and are also found in the Midwest of the United States and in Western Australia. Inclined (sloping) layers within the Coconino Sandstone of Grand Canyon are testimony to 10,000 cubic miles of sand being deposited by huge water currents within days.
Focus in: Transcontinental Rock Layers
Evidence 4: Sediment transported long distances
We find that the sediments in those widespread, rapidly deposited rock layers had to be eroded from distant sources and carried long distances by fast-moving water. For example, the sand for the Coconino Sandstone of Grand Canyon (Arizona) had to be eroded and transported from the northern portion of what is now the United States and Canada. Furthermore, water current indicators (such as ripple marks) preserved in rock layers show that for “300 million years” water currents were consistently flowing from northeast to southwest across all of North and South America, which, of course, is only possible over weeks during a global Flood.
Focus in: Sand Transported Cross Country
Evidence 5: Rapid or no erosion between strata
We find evidence of rapid erosion, or even of no erosion, between rock layers. Flat, knife-edge boundaries between rock layers indicate continuous deposition of one layer after another, with no time for erosion. For example, there is no evidence of any “missing” millions of years (of erosion) in the flat boundary between two well-known layers of Grand Canyon—the Coconino Sandstone and the Hermit Formation. Another impressive example of flat boundaries at Grand Canyon is the Redwall Limestone and the strata beneath it.
Focus in: No Slow and Gradual Erosion
Evidence 6: Many strata laid down in rapid succession
Rocks do not normally bend; they break because they are hard and brittle. But in many places we find whole sequences of strata that were bent without fracturing, indicating that all the rock layers were rapidly deposited and folded while still wet and pliable before final hardening. For example, the Tapeats Sandstone in Grand Canyon is folded at a right angle (90°) without evidence of breaking. Yet this folding could only have occurred after the rest of the layers had been deposited, supposedly over “480 million years,” while the Tapeats Sandstone remained wet and pliable.
Focus in: Rock Layers Folded, Not Fractured
What now?
The Bible’s history is reliable throughout—from the creation of man from the dust of the ground to the worldwide Flood to the coming of Jesus Christ. But just reading the evidence isn’t enough. The message of salvation founded in the Bible's history is also true, and, God wants us to accept the gift of salvation He freely offers us.
The evidence is real. God has revealed Himself to us in His Word and in His creation (Romans 1:20).


the never happened exodus,(Just answered) and through the pseudepigrapha called the NT. Come my friend,(no you come to God my brother) you came here to the THINKINGatheist with the hubris agenda to come teach us atheists a thing or two about god. You will soon find out the opposite.(yes I was expecting rebellious people here, athiesm caused by reason’s of pride yes).
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