Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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02-07-2016, 10:34 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  So you claim I dodged something, and then claim I addressed it, but still claim I dodged it?

I am as fluent in slang as anyone else, and I must say, what the fuck?

You dodged my initial point about whether he would have been working from records. Then you addressed it in a second post by showing where Tacitus frequently stated a distinction between the two types.



(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  You've expressed an opinion here with no evidence for support. I will show you the text from Tacitus and explain something to you that is exceptionally obvious about it all. I will show you textual evidence to support my position, where you have provided none to support yours.

Annals 15.44

"Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea,"

Wait, are you trying to imply that I hadn't read the passage? WTF?

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  1. The first thing that is clearly obvious is that Tacitus is writing Roman history.

That is not "clearly obvious". He is explaining that Christians got their name from a "Christus" and what their origins are. Whether or not some distant regional governor killed their cult leader would have been peanuts to him. He is indeed writing Roman history, but it is the history of Nero's actions in Rome, and the detail of whom the Christians are is not critical enough to merit more than a description.

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  2. The next thing is that he described the Christians as "a class hated for their abominations." So the question you need to answer is whether or not a highly respected statesman and historian such as Tacitus would go to "a class hated for their abominations" to glean information pertaining to Roman history. Keep in mind Tacitus is NOT writing Christian history, but Roman history.

Tacitus was writing a century after Jesus' death. We have examples of early Christian writers telling the Emperors of the day that the Christians do not, as alleged, actually commit incest, cannibalism, or other barbarisms to which the Romans assigned them. Tacitus did, however, research cults of Rome. Since the Christians were the ones Nero blamed for the fires (either to cover his own actions or just as general scapegoats), it was necessary to explain how they ended up in Rome in the first place. Of course he'd find out and know who the Christians actually claimed to be, as he did with the other cults. In this case, a bit of his knowledge was relevant to why this group was there to be targeted by Nero.

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  3. The fact that Tacitus mentions a high ranking Roman official such as Pilate, and of all people Caesar Tiberius, within the very context of Christ and the Christians not only supports the obvious fact that he is writing Roman history and not repeating hearsay from a hated class, but also we must consider that if Tacitus was writing false history about Christ and the Christians, then his mentioning of how the Caesar and Pilate were involved would also be false Roman history.

If this bit of Roman history of Pilate and Tiberius was false, why do we not see anyone else correcting Tacitus in antiquity? That is evidence we should expect if it were true, but that evidence doesn't exist.

Why would anyone in Rome, reading this, care? Only the Christians would, and they wouldn't quibble with his passage, no matter how he described them. The passage suffices to explain why the Christians were in Rome and being persecuted. Any further discussion would be important only to Christians.

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  4. And finally, you will not find one single Christian document in existence which details anything about what Tacitus said about the persecution of the Christians under Nero, which demonstrates that there is no evidence to support that Tacitus gleaned this information from Christians.

Wut? What type of document would we expect, on this? You're alleging that since no Christians countermanded Nero's accurate description of what they claimed, or what happened to them under Nero, that he must have been working from official documents rather than just finding out what the sect believed/claimed?

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  Now that is actual evidence we can see within the context, and no speculation is required. We are speaking about a Roman Historian who was writing Roman history, and just because you see something about Christ and the Christians in his works by no means gives you any reason whatsoever to believe that Tacitus is somehow writing Christian history into his Roman history book.

That is utterly ridiculous, and refuted by the actual available evidence. It would appear to me, and most historians for that matter, that the argument that Tacitus used Christian history instead of Roman history is a desperate attempt to simply make the reality of confirmation of the existence of Jesus to go away.

It is neither ridiculous nor refuted. Your "evidence" is an inference that because it was the usual practice of Tacitus, when writing about the actions of an Emperor, to carefully document what he could or specify when passing on rumor, that the same standard would apply to a passing comment explaining the origin of the Christians being persecuted. That Tacitus would have even considered it "Christian history", rather than a simple side-detail in the broader context of the actions of the Emperor.

All he is doing in that passage is saying, "They call themselves Christians because of a guy they call Christ. Apparently one of our provincial governors killed the dude." before moving on to the actual meat of the story, which is that they were used as a scapegoat and political distraction for the emperor he's documenting.

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  Or it is exactly what I demonstratedit was; Tacitus used the consensus of previous Roman historians and their historical records. If their records entitled Pilate as a Procurator, then that explains it. If the consensus was that Pilate was a Procurator, then that is what Pilate's title was known to be at the time of the previous historians writings.

It is indeed possible that Tacitus was working from documents that mention what a Christian is, such as Acta Senatus or the Acta Diurna (a sort of "daily newspaper"), but it doesn't explain how the documentarian of the trial at the time would get the title wrong. It's easy to understand how someone writing down the Christian claim years after the fact could get it wrong, since about a decade after the alleged execution the title of the governors of Judea was Procurator. Before that it was not even legal, and would not have been recorded as Pr.

It is evidence that there is no timely (direct) evidence being employed.

(02-07-2016 09:36 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  You are imposing your view upon Tacitus, and providing no evidence to support it. This is just an unsubstantiated and unqualified opinion and can be dismissed.

So I'm pulling it out of my ass, am I? Can you explain that to Robert van Voorst, professor of New Testament Studies at Western Theological Seminary, and Paul Mirecki, former head of the Religious Studies department at the University of Kansas? (In personal discussions with the latter, I learned this information and was referred to some of the writings of the former.)

As I said, you have to infer and assume quite a bit to state that there is some (now-missing) Roman record from which Tacitus got the description of what a Christian was and claimed, in 115 C.E., rather than either knowing it as part of his work as a cult researcher or simply asking someone directly. The only extant documents of which I am aware from which Tacitus could have been working that claim Christ was killed by Pilate would be the Gospels. This is the narrative the Christians were definitely telling anyone who'd listen, by the start of the 2nd century.

The rest is your invention and assumption, while mine is a simpler explanation per Occam's Razor.

"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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02-07-2016, 10:35 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:31 AM)Born Again Pagan Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:05 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  False comparison, Mark.

Since the allegation of those who claim that Jesus of Nazareth was a complete myth, it is not unreasonable to expect some degree of evidence to support it, if that evidence exists.

It is not unreasonable to expect someone from antiquity to express as factual that Jesus did not exist at all, especially when we see them in debates with Christians discussing this very same Jesus.

We call it evidence of absence (not to be confused with absence of evidence), and it is evidence of any kind that suggests something is missing or that it does not exist.

Since we can reasonably expect persons from antiquity writing about their opposition to Christianity to mention as factual- or even question- the non existence of this Jesus, then that evidence should be available.

Since it is not available, then that is evidence of the absence of positive proof to validate the position of the non existence of this Jesus, and it is also evidence we can use to support his existence.
You aren't getting any easier to follow as time and posts go on.

Perhaps the following link will enable you a greater understanding:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence_of_absence
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02-07-2016, 10:36 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
I haven't seen Tomato around in a minute. Can someone check for socks?

"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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02-07-2016, 10:42 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:19 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:09 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  How about you list what these "other documents" are in which there is no embellishment.

For what purpose? You are a Jesus Mythicist, so all I can expect from you are unreasonable and unsupported false arguments about it all. But I will demonstrate with just one, and tear your argument to pieces by proving that you don't even have an actual argument.

Antiquites of the Jews - Book XX

"Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others, [or, some of his companions];"

Now I will watch how you will so miserably attempt to make this all about some other Jesus who was called Christ, and who had a brother named James.

Go ahead, let's see it. It is so tiresomely predictable.

Big Grin

I already told you I'm not a mythicist. Your memory is going, gramps.

You said "other documents". You implied you had multiple documents.
Why did you have to lie ? So you have only one.
"A brother of Jesus" could easily just be another way to say "Christian", since they all called each other "brother". It may not be, but we will never know for sure.

It all makes no difference AT ALL, whether he did or did not exist.

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02-07-2016, 10:44 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:42 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:19 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  For what purpose? You are a Jesus Mythicist, so all I can expect from you are unreasonable and unsupported false arguments about it all. But I will demonstrate with just one, and tear your argument to pieces by proving that you don't even have an actual argument.

Antiquites of the Jews - Book XX

"Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others, [or, some of his companions];"

Now I will watch how you will so miserably attempt to make this all about some other Jesus who was called Christ, and who had a brother named James.

Go ahead, let's see it. It is so tiresomely predictable.

Big Grin

I already told you I'm not a mythicist. Your memory is going, gramps.

You said "other documents". You implied you had multiple documents.
Why did you have to lie ? So you have only one.
"A brother of Jesus" could easily just be another way to say "Christian", since they all called each other "brother". It may not be, but we will never know for sure.

It all makes no difference AT ALL, whether he did or did not exist.

You subscribe to the works of Carrier, a known mythicist.

I just want to see what you can do with that one document first before we go any further.

The floor is yours.
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02-07-2016, 10:46 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:36 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  I haven't seen Tomato around in a minute. Can someone check for socks?

An accusation of a sock puppet is nothing but an act of desperation. You have no good argument, so you then proceed to get rid of the person who bests you in a debate.

Big Grin
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02-07-2016, 10:52 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:46 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:36 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  I haven't seen Tomato around in a minute. Can someone check for socks?

An accusation of a sock puppet is nothing but an act of desperation. You have no good argument, so you then proceed to get rid of the person who bests you in a debate.

Big Grin

You fit the pattern- including the fact that a "newbie" already knows exactly what "sock" refers to. We trounce one poster, who then shows back up under a new name and proceeds to make the same sorts of arguments. It's worth investigating.

Frankly, I'm enjoying the discussion, with the exception of your particular tone, which reminds me of previous discussions I've had on this subject. I simply want to ensure I'm not playing ring around the rosie, so to speak.

"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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02-07-2016, 10:53 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:44 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:42 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  I already told you I'm not a mythicist. Your memory is going, gramps.

You said "other documents". You implied you had multiple documents.
Why did you have to lie ? So you have only one.
"A brother of Jesus" could easily just be another way to say "Christian", since they all called each other "brother". It may not be, but we will never know for sure.

It all makes no difference AT ALL, whether he did or did not exist.

You subscribe to the works of Carrier, a known mythicist.

I just want to see what you can do with that one document first before we go any further.

The floor is yours.

I don't "subscribe" to his works, old feller. I never said that. I wanted to see if you could EVEN BEGIN to deal with his ideas. Not only could you not, (you also said you had not even read his books), you said no one talks about his ideas, even though Ehrman and he had very public disagreements. You're very out of touch. You nonsense about 1st Cause demonstrates you're stuck in the distant past.

You lied about "other documents". You committed common fallacies and didn't even recognize them. Clearly you're an amateur, and basically untrained. You couldn't address any of the translation issues that were posted. You're the typical internet theist suffering from Dunning-Krueger.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2...ger_effect

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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02-07-2016, 11:04 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:10 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 09:59 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  This is getting extremely annoying.


I believe that it is likely that a preacher named jesus was executed by Pontius Pilate.
I believe that it is possible that more than one preacher named jesus was executed by Pontius Pilate.
I believe that Tacitus is reliable and that his account regarding christians is reliable.

NOW FOR FUCKS SAKE WHAT IS YOUR FUCKING POINT????

So, let's take you to task and be more precise.

1. Do you believe that the Jesus who was crucified by Pontius Pilate was Jesus of Nazareth, who's life was embellished by the Christians, and therefore subsequently became the centerpiece of the Christian religion?

2. You said that what Tacitus wrote about the Christians was factual, but do you agree that what he wrote about Christ was also factual?

And that is my "fucking point."

Big Grin

My statements are clear enough. Quit dodging.

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Freedom offers opportunity. Opportunity confers responsibility. Responsibility to use the freedom we enjoy wisely, honestly and humanely. ~ Noam Chomsky
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02-07-2016, 11:13 AM (This post was last modified: 02-07-2016 11:33 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 10:46 AM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:36 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  I haven't seen Tomato around in a minute. Can someone check for socks?

An accusation of a sock puppet is nothing but an act of desperation. You have no good argument, so you then proceed to get rid of the person who bests you in a debate.

Big Grin

Well that's certainly not you.

You said you hadn't even read Carrier or Price, and don't even know what their objections to historicity even are.

You have't "bested" anyone.

There are nuances which exclude Tomato, (and Free ... who is far more educated on current topics than this dude). His English is OK, at least.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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