Census of Quirinius
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19-12-2013, 07:21 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(18-12-2013 03:54 PM)cjlr Wrote:  
(18-12-2013 03:37 PM)alpha male Wrote:  The Bible's a big book covering lots of events from a long time ago. Why would I expect to be able to independently confirm everything recorded in it?

There are, crudely, three categories in which we might assign historical accounts. True, false, and unknown.

The bible contains some that is true. The bible contains much that is unknown or irrelevant. The bible contains much that is provably false.
The census hasn't been shown to be in the provably false category, so I don't understand the emphasis on that category.
Quote:It appears - at best, since I'm being charitable - that you are basing an acceptance of unknown parts on the existence of some other parts which are amenable to confirmation.
I'm putting the census in the unknown category. When asked straight out what year I think the census took place I said "I don't know." You guys are building a straw man.
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19-12-2013, 09:02 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(19-12-2013 07:13 AM)alpha male Wrote:  Straw man.

Joke.

Or do you not have a sense of humour?

The point still stands, however. Having one very unreliable source (the Gospels) and having it in contradiction it with another (apparently?) unreliable source (Josephus) lends no further credibility to the first source.

The only reasonable conclusion is to trust neither unless further corroborating evidence is found.

Such as exists for much of Josephus.

And not for the Gospels.

So there's that.

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19-12-2013, 09:14 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(19-12-2013 09:02 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Joke.

Or do you not have a sense of humour?

The point still stands, however. Having one very unreliable source (the Gospels) and having it in contradiction it with another (apparently?) unreliable source (Josephus) lends no further credibility to the first source.
That would be a valid point if I had started a thread claiming that Luke was correct, but that's not the case. You guys are claiming he's wrong. It's up to you to support that. I don't need to lend further credibility to Luke. This is a blatant shift of the burden of proof.
Quote:The only reasonable conclusion is to trust neither unless further corroborating evidence is found.
Fine with me.
Quote:Such as exists for much of Josephus.
If you had other corroborating evidence for Josephus on the census, then you'd have something.
Quote:And not for the Gospels.
Can you support that there is no corroborating evidence for places and people Luke mentions in his gospel and in Acts?
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19-12-2013, 09:25 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(19-12-2013 09:14 AM)alpha male Wrote:  That would be a valid point if I had started a thread claiming that Luke was correct, but that's not the case. You guys are claiming he's wrong. It's up to you to support that. I don't need to lend further credibility to Luke. This is a blatant shift of the burden of proof.

All the details about how the census as described are impossible are listed in the OP.

Perhaps you should read it.

(19-12-2013 09:14 AM)alpha male Wrote:  
Quote:The only reasonable conclusion is to trust neither unless further corroborating evidence is found.
Fine with me.

So, you're an agnostic now? Neat!

(19-12-2013 09:14 AM)alpha male Wrote:  
Quote:Such as exists for much of Josephus.
If you had other corroborating evidence for Josephus on the census, then you'd have something.

You don't seem to quite get it.

Josephus doesn't mention the census. Luke's description is self-refuting.

(19-12-2013 09:14 AM)alpha male Wrote:  
Quote:And not for the Gospels.
Can you support that there is no corroborating evidence for places and people Luke mentions in his gospel and in Acts?

Oh, you adorably fatuous little thing.

As, er, my previous post literally and explicitly said, some parts are indeed true, so far as is verifiable. Certainly there are real places mentioned - meaningless as that is; the labours of Herakles "happened" in real places, too. Was he real?

If your standards of credibility (and lack of "materialist bias" Rolleyes ) are what actually causes you to buy into the Biblical narratives - that incidental truths are parlayed into wholesale acceptance of unattested and impossible things - then you wouldn't just believe the one religion, now would you? There being at least as much evidence for numerous others, after all.

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20-12-2013, 09:53 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(17-12-2013 09:23 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  1) nothing is known in history of a general census by Augustus.
Incorrect. Luke mentions it.
Quote:2) in a Roman census Joseph would not have had to travel to Bethlehem, and Mary would not have had to travel at all.
As noted previously, Luke doesn't say they were required to travel. Many Israelites took pride in their ancestry and may have simply chosen to travel.
Quote:3) no Roman census would have been made in Judea during the reign of Herod.
Why not?
Quote:4) Josephus records no such census, and it would have been a notable innovation.
Argument from silence, and Josephus is not an unimpeachable source.
Quote:5) Quirinius was not governor of Syria until long after the reign of Herod. The suggested alternative translations have been described as "implausible" and "almost impossible".
As previously discussed, it's Luke v. Josephus, and Josephus is not an unimpeachable source.
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20-12-2013, 09:58 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(19-12-2013 09:25 AM)cjlr Wrote:  All the details about how the census as described are impossible are listed in the OP.
Addressed the numbered points above.
Quote:So, you're an agnostic now? Neat!
Regarding the year of the census, yes.
Quote:Oh, you adorably fatuous little thing.

As, er, my previous post literally and explicitly said, some parts are indeed true, so far as is verifiable. Certainly there are real places mentioned - meaningless as that is; the labours of Herakles "happened" in real places, too. Was he real?

If your standards of credibility (and lack of "materialist bias" Rolleyes ) are what actually causes you to buy into the Biblical narratives - that incidental truths are parlayed into wholesale acceptance of unattested and impossible things - then you wouldn't just believe the one religion, now would you? There being at least as much evidence for numerous others, after all.
I disagree, but as noted previously, this is a red herring and should be taken up in another thread if you're interested. I've done it on other forums. It's not difficult to note differentiators between quality of evidence for different claims.
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20-12-2013, 08:49 PM
RE: Census of Quirinius
In the Res Gestae Divi Augustus http://classics.mit.edu/Augustus/deeds.html the Emperor himself tells us when, with whom he officiated and the results of the three censuses he conducted. These were in 28 BC, 8 BC and 14 AD. In all three cases they were counting the number of Roman citizens...not judaean shleppers from a rathole of a prefecture. Roman citizenship was not automatic outside of Italy and would not become so for nearly 2 centuries after Augustus' death.

No one gave a rat's ass how many Jews there were. And certainly no one would conduct any sort of census in Galilee which was under the rule of a client king by the name of Herod Antipas in 6 AD.

The entire story is totally fucking ludicrous. It is in fact, just as ludicrous as the Matthew version with his magicians from the east and the star bouncing along the earth to guide them to a fucking stable.

Really, how silly do you have to be to accept such total balderdash as "factual?"

Time to grow the fuck up, xtians. The world is passing you by.

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20-12-2013, 09:31 PM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(20-12-2013 09:53 AM)alpha male Wrote:  As previously discussed, it's Luke v. Josephus, and Josephus is not an unimpeachable source.

As EK's videos above point out, it's not Luke vs Josephus. It's Luke vs Matthew and Luke vs independent roman sources regarding the dates and types of census in the reigion at the very least.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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20-12-2013, 10:03 PM
RE: Census of Quirinius
Bart Ehrman makes a good case showing that the birth narrative of john and of jesus were added in later editions of Luke. Luke originally started in chapter 3. If read starting there the the first portion of chapter 3 has the form of a prologue. If it didn't start there, it's very odd for Luke to have two prologues in the first few chapters.

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06-01-2014, 08:36 AM
RE: Census of Quirinius
(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  In the Res Gestae Divi Augustus http://classics.mit.edu/Augustus/deeds.html the Emperor himself tells us when, with whom he officiated and the results of the three censuses he conducted. These were in 28 BC, 8 BC and 14 AD. In all three cases they were counting the number of Roman citizens...not judaean shleppers from a rathole of a prefecture. Roman citizenship was not automatic outside of Italy and would not become so for nearly 2 centuries after Augustus' death.

Actually that text makes reference to a census apart from the lustrum census, and in the general census the point was to see how much the local administrators should be collecting in taxes, rather than how many citizens for whom the lustrum was going to be. The number of non-citizens was certainly important, given they had to pay taxes too (even the number of slaves had to be reported by the heads of household).

(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  No one gave a rat's ass how many Jews there were.

They sure as hell did.

(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  And certainly no one would conduct any sort of census in Galilee which was under the rule of a client king by the name of Herod Antipas in 6 AD.

Herod Antipas' administration is utterly irrelevant.

(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  The entire story is totally fucking ludicrous.

It's certainly a fabrication, since the dating is off and no one would be required to travel to their home town, but your perception of the historical reality is remarkably underinformed and dogmatic.

(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  It is in fact, just as ludicrous as the Matthew version with his magicians from the east and the star bouncing along the earth to guide them to a fucking stable.

Not quite.

(20-12-2013 08:49 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  Really, how silly do you have to be to accept such total balderdash as "factual?"

Time to grow the fuck up, xtians. The world is passing you by.

Good thing you're here to crack the whip in such an informed and objective manner, amirite?

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