Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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28-07-2016, 07:44 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(27-07-2016 07:36 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  You are very closed to the idea that the Nazarenes were fundamentalist Jews in direct opposition to Paul. I will be happy to discuss this with you and anyone else interested but I don't want to turn it into a boxing match where you automatically attempt to refute everything I say.

We know the opposition Paul had with other jewish christians, the oppositions revolved exclusively around the Jewish ritual laws, and whether gentiles need abide by them to be a part of the christian community. You suggest it was a lot more than that, based on what exactly? You indicated that we don't really have any sources on what a sect like the Nazarene's believed, and the christian sources here are not be trusted, since they also contradict your suggestions.

SO where did you derive your views about what Nazarene's believed then? Where did you derive their contentions with Paul from, if not from Pauls own writings on his disputes with some of the followers of Jesus?

Quote:I can present a lot of evidence that the Nazarenes and Paul were at odds with each other, however I've presented it before on this forum and I don't want to get the reputation for being a repetitive bore.

You earlier claimed that we have no actual Nazarene writings, and the writings of Paul, and the Church fathers here are to be dismissed. Which would leave you empty handed, with no evidence to supports your claims as to what Paul and the Nazarene's were odds with each other about. I know you're likely gonna start offering a series of unevidenced wild speculations at this point, but I care less about what you imagine their disputes were about, and more about what can be reasonably assumed based on the evidence we have.

There is no other source about the dispute between Paul and the Jewish Christians, other than the writings of Paul himself, about this dispute. Paul's clear as to what that dispute was about, about nothing other than whether or not the Gentiles needed to follows the Jewish ritual laws, to be a part of the Christian community. There's not arguments in relationship to Jesus's divinity, no arguments in regards to the virgin birth, which Paul doesn't mention at all, about the resurrection, etc...

Perhaps you'll suggest that Paul's can't be trusted, well that that leaves you in bind, because now you have nothing to stand on to suggest what their disputes were about.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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28-07-2016, 07:56 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 03:21 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  It is not a theory, but it is my hypothesis. My hypothesis is easily falsifiable, should evidence be shown that the town was there before I claim, or that it would somehow be impossible for such a town to have grown at that rate, or that there is no way people in adjacent territories would have heard of this town with the same name as the sect of which they were accused of being members (and from which they wished to distinguish themselves and their Savior).\

No, you and Mark are the only one's reading into them, a desire to distinguish themselves and their Savior from the supposed "nazarene sect", a position completely unsupported, and contradicted by the sources themselves.

There's no evidence in support of any such dispute existing among the writers of the Gospels, and this supposed sect. In fact judging that the biggest and, sole documented dispute among Jewish Christians, and Paul revolved around the role of Gentile observance to Jewish ritual laws, and the fact that the positions of the Gospel writers is left ambiguous, clearly indicates that this was not the case.

If these writers were a part of this dispute, and wanted to distinguish themselves from the Jewish Christians here, and side with Paul, then they would had their Gospels endorsing Paul's views here, which they don't.

The writers frequently refer to Jesus as the Nazarene, as well indicating his hometown was Nazareth. Not a single iota of contention can be found in their texts, and the supposed sect their supposed to be trying to distinguish themselves from.

So it's not even a hypothesis on your part, is just verbal diarrhea.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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28-07-2016, 11:15 AM (This post was last modified: 28-07-2016 11:49 AM by GoingUp.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 03:21 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  
(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  The inscription for the priestly courses has them going to a town, that by necessity, had to already exist with the name of Nazareth in 70 CE, otherwise there would be no Nazareth on the inscription.

Sure. I agree that it "already existed with the name of Nazareth in 70 CE", as I have repeatedly said. I simply think that it's more than reasonable to conclude that, until we have evidence that the town was long-standing, it was instead the result of a rapid buildup of population during the time when people were fleeing the destruction of a genocidal campaign by the Romans to suppress rebellion in the original population centers, and that refugee priests went there along with all the other people going there. It fits the pattern better than "significant town that no one mentions until after the war".

If you have an actual argument for why my hypothesis is inferior to yours (that it was always there despite the silence), I welcome you to address why my conclusion is implausible. So far I have seen nothing other than emotionally-charged assertions with no support other than essentially calling me stupid for not agreeing with you and "all the experts" (who do not all agree, despite your assertions, as Carrier pointed out).

You don't have a hypothesis. That's my point.

You have a theory that doesn't have a shred of evidence to qualify it as a hypothesis.

Quote:
(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  So what you are asking me to consider is the following:

1. Some yet unnamed village was renamed Nazareth in or circa 70 CE. - no evidence.

I'm not even sure there was a village there. None of the evidence demonstrates there was anything there prior to 70 CE. It allows for it within the low end of the range of dates, but it does not demonstrate it. This is more assertion/assumption. However, I think it was named as soon as it was founded-- this is pretty much how all towns have been named since humans began to make settlements, as far as I'm aware.

Are you purposely choosing to ignore that long list of experts who all agree that there is indeed evidence to support Nazareth existing before, during, and immediately after the purported time of Jesus?

And for what? Can you even find one actual expert who:

1. Agrees with your position?

2. States positively that the evidence DOES NOT support the position of Nazareth existing before, during, and immediately after the purported time of Jesus?

3. Produces one iota of actual hard evidence that contradicts the consensus of all the experts I listed?

Quote:
(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  2. This new town of Nazareth was known to have expanded significantly due to the displacement of the Jews due to the Roman-Jewish war of 70 C.E. - no evidence

"Was known"? I suggested no such thing. Stop putting words in my mouth.

Since you are suggesting that it grew in population as part of your position, surely it would have been known! If a town suddenly goes from some obscure un-named and as as of yet completely unknown village of perhaps just a few people to this sudden emergence of a brand new town large enough for it to be named as Nazareth on the inscription and put on the map, then certainly somebody somewhere would have said something about it!

Your position by necessity IMPLIES it, and it doesn't take a Rocket Surgeon to figure that out.

Quote:However, it makes sense to me, based on how the Hebrews relocated to the Galilee after the BK Revolt, and based on other tales of the Diaspora I have read (though in most of those, of course, the Jews relocated outside of Judea completely... mainly to Egypt and what is now Turkey, providing the blended culture that was fertile ground for the Hebrew/Greek hybrid that is the Christian theological philosophy). Most likely, there were a few small dwellings scattered about, at some nameless crossroads in a valley like lots of other places in Galilee, and people started coming there in larger numbers as they were pushed out of the more populous areas during the revolt. Why this is so insane of an idea to you, I don't grasp.

I don't grasp it because you have no evidence to support it. Why grasp into something that isn't true? All it is is a cool story. But like so many other stories, without evidence it is nothing but a complete fabrication.

Quote:
(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  3. The Gospel writers who may have written sometime after 70 C.E. seized upon the newly named town of Nazareth to include it as part of the Gospel narrative. - no evidence.

Again, I am trying to parse out motive and human behavior, here. If you are followers of an wandering apocalyptic Messiah-claimant, who says the end of the world is upon us ("before this generation passes", and all that), but then you find yourself being mocked because people are actually passing away and the slaughtered "Messiah" hasn't returned in glory, yes, you might start looking around for ways to improve your story, including constructing an "early life" and trying to tie Jesus to the Old Testament prophecies. I consider it entirely probable that the early followers of Jesus were Nazarenes (or that he was one of them, as Mark suggests), and that the group we'd come to call Christians pulled away from that (as detailed by Epiphanius) in order to reject more of the Judaism in favor of a more-Hellenic version promoted by Paul (and the "church fathers" who as victors wrote the history).

Complete speculation. It's fun to speculate, because that is where theories begin. But the moment that theory hits brick wall after brick wall, it's over. You cannot test this to qualify it as a hypothesis because you have no supporting evidence.

You as a biologist should already know this. Therefore, apply the same standard here with history that you apply with biology and you will begin to understand how history works.

Quote:
(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  Now, since there is no record of any of the 3 presumed events above in existence, when it is perfectly reasonable to expect to have these records entered into evidence,

Slow your roll there, Tiger. So your answer to "we have no evidence of a pre-70-CE-Nazareth" is to challenge the fact that there's no evidence of my hypothetical construction of why that might be?

Wrong.

My position is that we DO have evidence to support a pre-70 CE-Nazareth. I am siding with the findings of the scholars and have been given no good reason to dispute them.

Can you find one qualified expert who contests the findings of the archeologists in Nazareth? No, you cannot. In fact, we find these archeologists' findings being verified by other archeologists!

But what do you have? You have a theory, that cannot be qualified as being a hypothesis, and you don't have a single expert who agrees with you. Not one. On top of that, you have absolutely no evidence whatsoever to even give us a HINT that your theory has any merit.

Your position is just word salad for conspiracy theorists.

Quote:You are far too confident in your conclusions. I acknowledge that it may have been there; I simply conclude that it did not need to be, and does not seem to be based on the silence of the record and the (to me) likely possibility that its use by the Christians is a matter of historical convergence shortly after the town was founded.

So here we are, with you agreeing that Nazareth must have existed at least by CE 70, but the reality is that we could even stretch your position into the CE late 60s so that it got named as Nazareth before the inscription date of CE 70.

Now we have Nazareth existing as Nazareth within 3.5 decades of the purported time of Jesus according to your own position, and you STILL want to argue about this?

Fuck .... Facepalm

(27-07-2016 08:11 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  If you have formed such hard conclusions that you cannot even consider another point of view ...

I consider all positions, but the moment those positions do not prove tenable due to a complete and total lack of evidence- and when all other available evidence works against it- then why waste my time on something that cannot be even demonstrated as realistically possible, let alone true?

Consider
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28-07-2016, 12:24 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
Again with this? *sigh* Nevermind. I'm done.

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"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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28-07-2016, 12:41 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 12:24 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  Again with this? *sigh* Nevermind. I'm done.

[Image: aaa827a0c4386a758efbb82757cc5d3e.jpg]

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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28-07-2016, 02:46 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 07:44 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(27-07-2016 07:36 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  You are very closed to the idea that the Nazarenes were fundamentalist Jews in direct opposition to Paul. I will be happy to discuss this with you and anyone else interested but I don't want to turn it into a boxing match where you automatically attempt to refute everything I say.

We know the opposition Paul had with other jewish christians, the oppositions revolved exclusively around the Jewish ritual laws, and whether gentiles need abide by them to be a part of the christian community. You suggest it was a lot more than that, based on what exactly? You indicated that we don't really have any sources on what a sect like the Nazarene's believed, and the christian sources here are not be trusted, since they also contradict your suggestions.

SO where did you derive your views about what Nazarene's believed then? Where did you derive their contentions with Paul from, if not from Pauls own writings on his disputes with some of the followers of Jesus?

Quote:I can present a lot of evidence that the Nazarenes and Paul were at odds with each other, however I've presented it before on this forum and I don't want to get the reputation for being a repetitive bore.

You earlier claimed that we have no actual Nazarene writings, and the writings of Paul, and the Church fathers here are to be dismissed. Which would leave you empty handed, with no evidence to supports your claims as to what Paul and the Nazarene's were odds with each other about. I know you're likely gonna start offering a series of unevidenced wild speculations at this point, but I care less about what you imagine their disputes were about, and more about what can be reasonably assumed based on the evidence we have.

There is no other source about the dispute between Paul and the Jewish Christians, other than the writings of Paul himself, about this dispute. Paul's clear as to what that dispute was about, about nothing other than whether or not the Gentiles needed to follows the Jewish ritual laws, to be a part of the Christian community. There's not arguments in relationship to Jesus's divinity, no arguments in regards to the virgin birth, which Paul doesn't mention at all, about the resurrection, etc...

Perhaps you'll suggest that Paul's can't be trusted, well that that leaves you in bind, because now you have nothing to stand on to suggest what their disputes were about.

Ok, here is some of the evidence Paul was at odds with the Nazarenes. I suggest you read it slowly, and with an open mind. There is a lot more to come...

Paul’s Relationship with the Nazarenes


At the so-called “Jerusalem council,” in or about 49 CE, James convened a meeting to discuss tactics for promoting the Nazarene’s beliefs. 2 Galatians, written by Paul, describes this meeting. It’s a truly enlightening passage from the bible:

“It was not until fourteen years had passed that I went up to Jerusalem again. I went with Barnabas and took Titus with me. I went there as a result of a revelation, and privately I laid before the leading men the Good News as I proclaim it among the pagans; I did so for fear the course I was adopting or had already adopted would not be allowed. And what happened? Even though Titus who had come with me is a Greek, he was not obliged to be circumcised. The question came up only because some who do not really belong to the brotherhood have furtively crept in to spy on the liberty we enjoy in Jesus Christ, and want to reduce us all to slavery. I was so determined to safeguard for you the true meaning of the Good News, that I refused even out of deference to yield to such people for one moment. As a result, these people who are acknowledged leaders—not that their importance matters much to me, since God has no favorites—these leaders, as I say, had nothing to add to the Good News as I preach it. On the contrary, they recognized I had been commissioned to preach the Good News to the uncircumcised just as Peter had been commissioned to preach it to the circumcised. The same person whose action had made Peter the apostle of the circumcised had given me a similar mission to the pagans. So James, Cephas and John, these leaders, these pillars, shook hands with Barnabas and me as a sign of partnership: we were to go to the pagans and they to the circumcised. The only thing they insisted on was that we should remember to help the poor, as indeed I was anxious to do. When Cephas came to Antioch, however, I opposed him to his face, since he was manifestly in the wrong. His custom had been to eat with the pagans, but after certain friends of James arrived he stopped doing this and kept away from them altogether for fear of the group that insisted on circumcision. The other Jews joined him in this pretence, and even Barnabas felt himself obliged to copy their behavior. When I saw they were not respecting the true meaning of the Good News, I said to Cephas in front of everyone, ‘In spite of being a Jew, you live like the pagans and not like the Jews, so you have no right to make the pagans copy Jewish ways.’” (Gal. 2:1–15 JB.)

Each sentence reveals a facet of a very strained relationship. Paul was clearly intimidated by James,’ John’s and Peter’s authority. He referred to them as “Pillars,” and “leading men,” and he writes he was well aware they mightn’t accept his proclamation of “Good News:”

“I laid before the leading men the Good News as I proclaim it among the pagans; I did so for fear the course I was adopting or had already adopted would not be allowed.”

What’s more, he barely concealed the fact he begrudged their authority:

“Not that their importance matters much to me.”

Can anyone imagine him writing that about someone (James) he thought was the half brother of the son of God? He quite clearly regarded them as competition:

“I was so determined to safeguard for you the true meaning of the Good News, that I refused even out of deference to yield to such people for one moment.” Paul mistrusted them. They didn’t “belong to the brotherhood.” He accused them of spying on “the liberty we enjoy in Christ Jesus.” He said they had “nothing to add to the Good News I preach.” He believed they “want to reduce us all to slavery.” He thought that the “Good News” he, and only he, preached, entitled people to be part of his brotherhood. He thought he was freeing people from the “slavery” of the Judaic Law.

Then, he and Peter, allegedly stalwarts of the fledgling Christian movement, (who the Vatican claim founded a Christian church in Rome together) bickered with each other. Paul claimed (probably quite correctly) that Peter didn’t respect his “Good News.” He claimed he publicly challenged Peter directly by accusing him of hypocrisy.

What an intriguing snippet of scripture! A churlish, hostile Paul, who was probably the first founder of Christianity, was personally and philosophically at odds with Jesus’ brother and disciples! He was angry and frustrated that they’d been undermining him, and he didn’t hold back his vindictive retort. Paul and them obviously weren’t preaching the same message! (as claimed in Acts.)

Here’s the historical reality. Devout Jews (such as the Nazarenes) despised Paul and rejected his ramblings. The idea that their mysterious, perfect, one and only God could be incarnated in a Christ was unthinkable to them. They couldn’t imagine that their God could die, or that a Christ’s death somehow addressed man’s sins. For them the kingdom of God promised in scripture never was in a hypothetical heaven, but was to be on earth in the here and now. Their messiah wasn’t some savior of souls, but a leader of the Jews who was to herald in a glorious age in which Israel triumphed and pagans recognized the glory of their god, Yahweh. He was to build the temple, (Ezek. 37:26–28) gather all Jews back to Israel, (Isa. 43:5–6) and, importantly, bring an end to Roman rule. He was supposed to end all exploitation, corruption, famine, disease, and war. Paul’s fictional Christ had done none of this!

Paul claimed:

“Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified” (Gal. 2;16, KJV) and

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law” (Gal. 3:13, KJV) and

“Before faith came, we were allowed no freedom by the Law; we were being looked after till faith was revealed. The law was to be our guardian until the Christ came and we could be justified by faith. Now that that time has come we are no longer under that guardian, and you are, all of you, sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. All baptized in Christ, you have all clothed yourself in Christ, and there are no more distinctions between Jew and Greek, slave and free, male and female, but all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal. 3:23–28, NJB.)

Jews didn’t buy this. They wouldn’t be Jewish if they did. They believed - and still do - that the way to find favor with God was to obey “the Law” - that is, the Torah, as allegedly taught by Moses. There’s no mention in their scriptures about an end to the covenant God made with their ancestors on Mount Sinai. Jews regarded the Law almost like a gift from their God, not a curse, or an imposition on freedom. They knew there was no such thing as a “new covenant.” Why would they give up centuries of tradition to believe a renegade like Paul?

Imagine a hypothetical modern analogy; a fanatic from a small cult, such as the “branch davidians,” grabbing a microphone during a Catholic mass at the Vatican, and proclaiming that David Koresh was Jesus’ son, and Koresh’s teachings replaced the sermon on the mount. Paul was behaving like a deluded fanatic.

Paul had an ambivalent attitude to Jewish scripture, which varied with the audience he was writing to. At times he used it to justify his own ideas, such as when writing to “Hellenized” Jews in the diaspora. Yet when writing to Gentiles he claimed large parts of it were redundant.

Yeshua had died over a decade before Paul appeared on the scene, and I think would have been perplexed and offended by the idea that his death could somehow give Gentiles a ticket to heaven. He hated the Romans, (they did nail him to a cross!) and never imagined that Yahweh, whom he never regarded as his temporal sire, would grant them a place in heaven!

Jesus supposedly said,
“Do not imagine that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish them but complete them. I tell you solemnly, till heaven and earth disappear, not one dot, not one little stroke, shall disappear from the Law until its purpose is achieved” (Matt. 5:17–18 JB.) Paul and Jesus contradicted each other! So much for biblical infallibility! (http://www.essene.org/Yahowshua_or_Paul.htm).

Many people today insist that Jesus came to do away with the Jewish Law. They’re not considering Jesus’ words, but Paul’s (or Paul’s proponents like Luther or Calvin.)

Most Jews believed God dwelt in the temple, in Jerusalem, Israel’s capital. Paul made a cavalier dismissal of the importance of Israel by suggesting that all believers become a temple for God:

“And that is what we are—the temple of the living God” (2 Cor. 6:15, NJB) and

“Didn’t you realize that you were God’s Temple” (1 Cor. 3:16 JB.)

He was trying to expand God’s seat of power out of Jerusalem and into the whole known world. Yet for most first century Jews this downplayed the importance of the temple, the geographical pivot of Judaism.

Jews thought they were Abraham’s descendants and God’s special people. Yet Paul claimed:

“Those therefore who rely on faith receive the same blessing as Abraham, the man of faith.” (Gal. 3:9, NJB,) and

“Merely by belonging to Christ you are the posterity of Abraham, the heirs he was promised” (Gal. 3:29, NJB.)

He wanted believing Gentiles to consider themselves God’s chosen, so that they too were special, and weaken the patriotic fervor of Jews by downplaying their exclusivity.

Throughout Paul’s travels, he was initially welcome in synagogues because he masqueraded as a traditional Jew, but after Jews heard what he had to say, he was rejected, sometimes even beaten and pelted with rocks; a repetitive pattern portrayed in Acts. They liked to think they were a chosen race, superior in all ways, and in God’s eyes, to the pagan hordes. These Jews must have imagined Paul was upsetting their God, and the whole Jewish community would suffer as a consequence. Is it any wonder they physically attacked him? Jesus’ own people were attacking Paul because he was promoting Christian ideas, a fact that should raise eyebrows in today’s churches.

In the decades Paul was preaching, the Nazarenes were expanding into a significant force under James’ leadership in Jerusalem. They also enjoyed a strong membership among Jews throughout the empire. They definitely didn’t preach the divinity of Christ, nor intend to start a new religion. Paul, when he wasn’t pretending to be one of them, considered them competitors. He got very upset when he encountered rival missionaries, who were probably Nazarene, and complained bitterly about them hijacking “his” converts. He cursed them, using the undeniable truth of his own gospel as justification:

“I am astonished at the promptness with which you have turned away from the one who called you and have decided to follow a different version of the Good News. Not that there can be more than one Good News; it is merely that some trouble makers among you want to change the Good News of Christ; and let me warn you that if anyone preaches a version of the Good News different from the one that we have already preached to you, whether it be ourselves or an angel from heaven, he is condemned” (Gal. 1:6–9, NJB.)

He sounds like an upset child whose best friend has gone off to play with someone else. It’s ironic that he was accusing his adversaries of the very thing he was guilty of - preaching a fabrication! He clearly undermined Yeshua’s family and disciples behind their backs. He was surprised and angry to find himself competing with them for people’s allegiance. They were treading on what he considered his turf. How dare they preach old-fashioned Jewish theology and disrupt his mission to set up communities of believers! Those annoying war-mongering Jews promoted subversive fantasies about a messiah, but today’s God had revealed to him the real Christ, the up-to-date modern Christ! He, not them, was plugging the “good news.” He claimed he knew what the flexible, expansionist, less violent, less Judaic God expected in these modern, pro-Roman times. He thought of himself as an educated, savvy sophisticate who knew a stack more about selling religion than the old fashioned anti-Roman bumpkins from Jerusalem!

The two faced Paul probably tried to ingratiate himself with the Nazarenes when in their company, but they became implacably opposed to him, as verified by the verbal confrontation described in Galatians chapter two, and the adamantly anti-Pauline assertions in James’ letter.
Paul knew he wasn’t a popular figure amongst traditional Jews. In his letter to the Romans he expressed his nervousness that the Nazarenes in Jerusalem might reject him, which, if the story in Acts is true, is precisely what happened. James summoned Paul to Jerusalem when it became apparent Paul was preaching against the Torah, and sent him to the temple to be purified and prove he was still a true Jew, (see Acts 21, http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts 21&version=KJV) which led to Paul’s so called arrest and eventual transportation to Rome. James, Jesus’ brother, effectively terminated Paul’s missionary career!

When Paul was forced to admit that he was a Roman citizen, his cover was well and truly blown. Nazarenes were implacably opposed to Rome. According to Acts, Roman authorities had to dedicate considerable resources (500 soldiers) to protect him from angry Jews. They were looking after one of their own. That’s about the same number of soldiers who arrested Jesus.

Paul wasn’t deterred. He kept writing letters from Rome.

His modern-day reputation as an honest evangelist, and the implication he taught Yeshua’s message, have no foundation, yet they’ve become part of Christian tradition, largely because of Acts, written some time in the early second century. Paul’s legitimacy must have lacked credibility, so the author had Jesus’ ghost appear to Paul on the road to Damascus, which was obviously a fiction, as was the story of Paul becoming best friends with Jesus’ disciples. The author even tried to shore up Paul’s status by having him (and his handkerchief) perform a number of miracles. Yet Paul failed to mention Jesus’ ghost or his own miracles; impossible omissions if they were true. Paul revealed many personality traits in his letters, but genuine modesty definitely wasn’t one of them.
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28-07-2016, 03:15 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 07:56 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(28-07-2016 03:21 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  It is not a theory, but it is my hypothesis. My hypothesis is easily falsifiable, should evidence be shown that the town was there before I claim, or that it would somehow be impossible for such a town to have grown at that rate, or that there is no way people in adjacent territories would have heard of this town with the same name as the sect of which they were accused of being members (and from which they wished to distinguish themselves and their Savior).\

No, you and Mark are the only one's reading into them, a desire to distinguish themselves and their Savior from the supposed "nazarene sect", a position completely unsupported, and contradicted by the sources themselves.

There's no evidence in support of any such dispute existing among the writers of the Gospels, and this supposed sect. In fact judging that the biggest and, sole documented dispute among Jewish Christians, and Paul revolved around the role of Gentile observance to Jewish ritual laws, and the fact that the positions of the Gospel writers is left ambiguous, clearly indicates that this was not the case.

If these writers were a part of this dispute, and wanted to distinguish themselves from the Jewish Christians here, and side with Paul, then they would had their Gospels endorsing Paul's views here, which they don't.

The writers frequently refer to Jesus as the Nazarene, as well indicating his hometown was Nazareth. Not a single iota of contention can be found in their texts, and the supposed sect their supposed to be trying to distinguish themselves from.

So it's not even a hypothesis on your part, is just verbal diarrhea.

I can't understand any of this ie I've got no idea what you're talking about, although I can see my name in the opening sentence. Could you rephrase it to make it more clear please?
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28-07-2016, 04:05 PM (This post was last modified: 28-07-2016 04:09 PM by Tomasia.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 02:46 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  brother and disciples! He was angry and frustrated that they’d been undermining him, and he didn’t hold back his vindictive retort. Paul and them obviously weren’t preaching the same message! (as claimed in Acts.)

Here’s the historical reality. Devout Jews (such as the Nazarenes) despised Paul and rejected his ramblings. The idea that their mysterious, perfect, one and only God could be incarnated in a Christ was unthinkable to them. They couldn’t imagine that their God could die, or that a Christ’s death somehow addressed man’s sins. For them the kingdom of God promised in scripture never was in a hypothetical heaven, but was to be on earth in the here and now. Their messiah wasn’t some savior of souls, but a leader of the Jews who was to herald in a glorious age in which Israel triumphed and pagans recognized the glory of their god, Yahweh. He was to build the temple, (Ezek. 37:26–28) gather all Jews back to Israel, (Isa. 43:5–6) and, importantly, bring an end to Roman rule. He was supposed to end all exploitation, corruption, famine, disease, and war. Paul’s fictional Christ had done none of this!

Apparently you don’t even read the passage in Galatians you quoted for support.

Paul in Galatians, indicated that they added nothing “to the Good news” as he preached it. That they recognized that he had “been commissioned to preach” it. That they shook hands with him as a “sign of partnership”. He indicated what their disagreement was about, that it was about whether pagan converts where to be circumcised and the fact that Peter, and Jame’s crew refused to eat with the pagan converts because they weren’t circumcised.

You on the other claim that they disagreed on the incarnation, on Christ’s death as an atonement for sin, on Christ divinity, in regards to Christ not being a savior of souls, etc… which is all unsupported nonsense, They had no such disagreement. Paul mentions no such disagreements between them. Nor do the church fathers in regards to the beliefs of the Nazarenes. Paul indicates this when pointing out that they shared the same Gospel, with nothing added to it, that they were in partnership, that their disagreement revolved around the question of circumcision.

A difference reiterated by the disputes with Nazarenes as indicated by the church fathers.

This is all that can be inferred from our available sources. If we are to distrust Paul, and church fathers here in expressing what some of the jewish christians and the Nazarenes believed, then you’re left entirely empty handed in claiming what the Nazarenes, the early Jewish Christians like James believed.

So quit you bloviating. You have no evidence in support of your views, in fact all the evidence we have contradicts your claims about the contentions between them. When are you going to admit this? Rather than avoiding this basic point that’s been repeated to you numerous times already.

Your claims about the relationship between Paul and the early disciples, are the equivalent of an atheists version of a Chick Tract, piles and piles of unsupported sensational nonsense.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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28-07-2016, 06:43 PM (This post was last modified: 28-07-2016 06:58 PM by GoingUp.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
Quote:Imagine a hypothetical modern analogy; a fanatic from a small cult, such as the “branch davidians,” grabbing a microphone during a Catholic mass at the Vatican, and proclaiming that David Koresh was Jesus’ son, and Koresh’s teachings replaced the sermon on the mount. Paul was behaving like a deluded fanatic.

I can see this point of view, but I see him more like "a woman scorned."

Quote:Yeshua had died over a decade before Paul appeared on the scene,

How did you arrive at this conclusion? I see Paul becoming involved shortly after Jesus' crucifixion.

Quote:He hated the Romans,

Are you using the Gospel records to come to this conclusion?

Quote:Jesus supposedly said,
“Do not imagine that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish them but complete them. I tell you solemnly, till heaven and earth disappear, not one dot, not one little stroke, shall disappear from the Law until its purpose is achieved” (Matt. 5:17–18 JB.) Paul and Jesus contradicted each other! So much for biblical infallibility! (http://www.essene.org/Yahowshua_or_Paul.htm).

Many people today insist that Jesus came to do away with the Jewish Law. They’re not considering Jesus’ words, but Paul’s (or Paul’s proponents like Luther or Calvin.)

Again you are using the Gospel record to validate your position. Two questions here:

1. Are you conceding the possibility the Gospel records do have a certain degree of historical value?

2.That quote of Jesus tells us that Jesus didn't come to abolish the law, but rather HE came to complete those laws and the prophecies of the prophets. Therefore, if we assume that Jesus did indeed complete the laws and the prophecies of the prophets, should we reasonably conclude that the purpose of the Law has been achieved, as he says?

The reason I ask this is because this statement of Jesus' is exactly why Christians feel that they are not required to obey the Law in the OT, because Jesus says in this statement that he came to achieve the purpose of completing those laws and the prophecies of the prophets.

And perhaps this statement was known by Paul, and understood by Paul in the manner by which I have explained, and which is the very reason why Paul preached such a similar message to the Gentiles.

Quote:largely because of Acts, written some time in the early second century.

I have contention with this. Listed below are just 4 verses from Acts that demonstrate a 1st person narrative which indicates that the writer was traveling with Paul at various times before CE 60. Please note the bold and underlined text:

Act_16:11 Then having set sail from Troas, we came with a straight course to Samothracia, and the next day to Neapolis;
Act_16:12 and from there to Philippi, which is the chief city of that part of Macedonia, a colony. And we continued spending time in that city some days.
Act_16:13 And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was usually made. And we sat down and spoke to the women who came together there.
Act_16:16 And as we went to prayer, it happened that a certain girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much gain by divining.


These are just 4 verses, there are many more.

What do you think of this?
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28-07-2016, 07:07 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(28-07-2016 06:43 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote:Imagine a hypothetical modern analogy; a fanatic from a small cult, such as the “branch davidians,” grabbing a microphone during a Catholic mass at the Vatican, and proclaiming that David Koresh was Jesus’ son, and Koresh’s teachings replaced the sermon on the mount. Paul was behaving like a deluded fanatic.

I can see this point of view, but I see him more like "a woman scorned."

Quote:Yeshua had died over a decade before Paul appeared on the scene,

How did you arrive at this conclusion? I see Paul becoming involved shortly after Jesus' crucifixion.

Quote:He hated the Romans,{/quote]

Are you using the Gospel records to come to this conclusion?

[quote]Jesus supposedly said,
“Do not imagine that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish them but complete them. I tell you solemnly, till heaven and earth disappear, not one dot, not one little stroke, shall disappear from the Law until its purpose is achieved” (Matt. 5:17–18 JB.) Paul and Jesus contradicted each other! So much for biblical infallibility! (http://www.essene.org/Yahowshua_or_Paul.htm).

Many people today insist that Jesus came to do away with the Jewish Law. They’re not considering Jesus’ words, but Paul’s (or Paul’s proponents like Luther or Calvin.)

Again you are using the Gospel record to validate your position. Two questions here:

1. Are you conceding the possibility the Gospel records do have a certain degree of historical value?

2.That quote of Jesus tells us that Jesus didn't come to abolish the law, but rather HE came to complete those laws and the prophecies of the prophets. Therefore, if we assume that Jesus did indeed complete the laws and the prophecies of the prophets, should we reasonably conclude that the purpose of the Law has been achieved, as he says?

The reason I ask this is because this statement of Jesus' is exactly why Christians feel that they are not required to obey the Law in the OT, because Jesus says in this statement that he came to achieve the purpose of completing those laws and the prophecies of the prophets.

And perhaps this statement was known by Paul, and understood by Paul in the manner by which I have explained, and which is the very reason why Paul preached such a similar message to the Gentiles.

Quote:largely because of Acts, written some time in the early second century.

I have contention with this. Listed below are just 4 verses from Acts that demonstrate a 1st person narrative which indicates that the writer was traveling with Paul at various times before CE 60. Please note the bold and underlined text:

Act_16:11 Then having set sail from Troas, we came with a straight course to Samothracia, and the next day to Neapolis;
Act_16:12 and from there to Philippi, which is the chief city of that part of Macedonia, a colony. And we continued spending time in that city some days.
Act_16:13 And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was usually made. And we sat down and spoke to the women who came together there.
Act_16:16 And as we went to prayer, it happened that a certain girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much gain by divining.


These are just 4 verses, there are many more.

What do you think of this?

How did you arrive at this conclusion? I see Paul becoming involved shortly after Jesus' crucifixion.

Sorry, I can't remember exactly. I think the dates are uncertain, and this is pretty much a consensus amongst the historians I have read.


Are you using the Gospel records to come to this conclusion?

No. I happily admit I am just using common sense ie I'm reading between the lines based on probable facts about Jesus.

And perhaps this statement was known by Paul, and understood by Paul in the manner by which I have explained, and which is the very reason why Paul preached such a similar message to the Gentiles.

I don't think Paul knew anything "Jesus" said or did. I don't think Paul's "Christ" was the Jesus we think we know. If Paul did know of a Jesus, it was a failed insurrectionist from a decade or so earlier... the dead brother of James.

These are just 4 verses, there are many more.

What do you think of this?


I think the multiple editors of Acts were careless and sloppy. They did not respect their readers enough to even pretend there was one author, let alone name him and demonstrate he was a legitimate commentator. We don't know who wrote Acts, and we don't know when it was first written... my guess is early second century, but I'm guessing just the same as everyone else.
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