Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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03-07-2016, 02:19 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 01:54 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  You have no evidence that anyone named Paul wrote anything. You have letters ... some of which we know were not written by the same guy as the others.

Except of course the letters we have from someone named Paul, who wrote of meeting his brother and disciples, and even having have a dispute with them over the role of the Jewish ritual law, who we know were written by the same guy.

Quote:You don't know what the JEWS around the time of a "Jesus" (if he existed), and remained JEWS for at least a century thought about this "Jesus", as there are no objective records of what they thought.

I would think they would have been disqualified for being Jews if they believed in a non-historical messiah? Or did these Jews likely believe in a historical one?

"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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03-07-2016, 02:27 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 01:45 PM)Chas Wrote:  ...
'textual excavation'
...

Is 'textual evacuation' a thing?

I think it must be a thing.

I'm seeing a lot of it in this thread.

Confused

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03-07-2016, 02:35 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 01:53 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 01:45 PM)Chas Wrote:  The 'big deal' is that the terms 'textual analysis' and 'textual excavation' are not synonymous.

Yes, they are. They are exactly the same thing.

If you say so. There is no scholarly definition of 'textual excavation', whereas 'textual analysis' is well-defined.

I suggest you define your outré terminology.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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03-07-2016, 02:37 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 02:27 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 01:45 PM)Chas Wrote:  ...
'textual excavation'
...

Is 'textual evacuation' a thing?

I think it must be a thing.

I'm seeing a lot of it in this thread.

Confused

No, no, no.

We have been over this material before. Just because something is repeated over and over again doesn't make it true. It also doesn't matter how many people believe it.

It's not a thing.

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03-07-2016, 03:02 PM (This post was last modified: 03-07-2016 03:26 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 02:19 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 01:54 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  You have no evidence that anyone named Paul wrote anything. You have letters ... some of which we know were not written by the same guy as the others.

Except of course the letters we have from someone named Paul, who wrote of meeting his brother and disciples, and even having have a dispute with them over the role of the Jewish ritual law, who we know were written by the same guy.

Quote:You don't know what the JEWS around the time of a "Jesus" (if he existed), and remained JEWS for at least a century thought about this "Jesus", as there are no objective records of what they thought.

I would think they would have been disqualified for being Jews if they believed in a non-historical messiah? Or did these Jews likely believe in a historical one?

No you don't. You have a set of letters that were written by at least two people with Paul slapped on the top as author. Who he was, and what he actually knew or thought about a "Jesus" is unknown. He said he "got his gospel from no man" by an hallucination. He talked about an apocalyptic hero with the title "Christ".

What you "think" is irrelevant. We don't know what these JEWS (members of the "WAY" subsect of Judaism), thought about a Jesus. Jesus didn't get the jobs done, the messiah was supposed to do.

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03-07-2016, 03:54 PM
Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 01:46 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  First of all, you are not a "Christian" by any definition.

Says the guy who claims that a supposed early sect that believed in a non-historical messiah, was "Jewish".


And also claims that Bonhoeffer was an atheist.

Quote:You can't define it. You won't define it.
Define what? What it means to self identify as a Christian?





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"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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03-07-2016, 04:24 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 02:03 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 01:20 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  Except we're not talking about the beliefs of the original Christians, but those of second-generation Christians, and in particular ones in the city of Rome who had never been to Judea. They would have had no idea if Jesus was an historical person, but would have had to take the early evangelists' word for it, as Christians do even today.

But we are talking about the "original Christians". Since any suggestion of a non-existing Jesus would have to formulate an explanations with them in mind as well. You don't get to make suggestions, and ignore the absurdity that comes along with it, when it's implications are considered, such when did the not historical Messiah, become a historical one.

You seem to not want us not to think this far, while at the same time wanting us to take your suggestions seriously, to see them as reasonable. An explanation might appear reasonable when though myopically, but one that unravels when given a broader thought and consideration, is begging absurdity.

You want to suggests that it's reasonable to assume Jesus didn't exist, though you are not inclined to endorse this position yourself, but you seem to lack the ability to consider the implications. You'd have a non-historical messiah claimant, who quickly become a historical one. Because clearly by Paul's writing he was already seen as historical, judging his claims of meeting his brother and disciples, and etc....

So I want to see you put that thinking cap to good use here, I want here you offer you reasonable explanation, as to when non-historical messiah became a historical messiah, even if you don't subscribe to this position yourself.

Quote:Like GoingUp, you're inserting your own objections into my ideas, where they are not present.

That's because you speak out of both sides of your mouth. You want to have it both ways, you want to subscribe to the existence of historical Jesus, while at the same time asking that we take the non-existent position serious, see at as reasonable.

Quote:My claim is simple: the writers like Tacitus would not have cared whether Jesus was a real guy, or if he was killed by Pilate, as claimed by the Christians in his area. Whether it is wholly fabricated, rumor turned into dogma, or a real event is irrelevant to them (and to me). I am simply pointing out that you cannot use Tacitus as a means to document the historicity of Jesus of Nazareth.

No writers like Tacitus would have cared. You didn't see him treat the resurrection as it was a historical event, in fact he labeled it a as "mischievous superstition". He clearly didn't take the word of Christians on that one, yet you imagine he would have taken their word on Jesus killed by a fellow Roman, procurator. Rather than label it as a made up claim by Christians, if there was hint of it being a fiction, like he did with the resurrection.

Quote:Since you can't seem to get it through your thick skull that I AM NOT A MYTHICIST,

No, you just like to defend it as a reasonable position, ain't that right?

Shit in one hand and "want" in the other, and see which fills up first. I am not playing your games.

I am not defending the Mythicist position, here.

I am only showing that Tacitus is not a demonstration of the historicity of Christ.

Anything beyond that, and you are making a straw-man of my argument, and therefore being dishonest. I would ask that you stop doing this. Yet again.

"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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03-07-2016, 04:56 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 03:54 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Says the guy who claims that a supposed early sect that believed in a non-historical messiah, was "Jewish".

Liar. Lying for Jebus. I never said that. I said we don't know what they thought.

Quote:And also claims that Bonhoeffer was an atheist. 3

He was. He said so. I proved it.

Quote:Define what? What it means to self identify as a Christian?

What Christianity is. Your attempt to deflect from the fact that you're a troll here is no longer working. Yet you can make up shit about people trying to undermine something you won't even define.

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03-07-2016, 06:47 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(02-07-2016 01:03 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
(02-07-2016 10:52 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  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.

I have been on various forums for 2 decades, so the word "sock" is well known to me. Some of the more militant atheist forums wrongly accuse people such as myself as being a sock, just to appease the idiots who couldn't offer up a decent debate.

It's very easy for the moderators to confirm or deny the claim, if they haven't already.

So what this tells me is that you fall for every forgery that later xtian writers put out for the express purpose of fooling fools. In that it seems they succeeded....if nothing else.

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03-07-2016, 07:28 PM (This post was last modified: 03-07-2016 07:52 PM by GoingUp.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
Quote:Holy fuck are you dense! Tacitus mentions him because the Christians cite to him as the executioner of their Christ,

X WRONG X

Any evidence that can demonstrate your claim?

No?

Okay we are done here, since I have provided plenty of evidence to support Tacitus sourcing information on the great fires of Rome from previously written records, and you have provided absolutely nothing.

Moving on ...

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  And please invest in a better shovel, because the one you are using to shovel this crap is broken.

Someone is certainly shoveling crap. As you said, I'll let the readers judge that one.

Anyone can see you are shooting blanks. Anyone with half a clue will not accept your unsupported assertions over actual bonafide evidence.

We are done here too.

Moving on ...

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  No.

In my quote of him- and please look closely- Tacitus mentioned his WORK, meaning the Annals as a whole:

"and to request all into whose hands my work shall come, not to catch eagerly at wild and improbable rumours in preference to genuine history"

Taking stuff out of context, again. Naughty, naughty!

He is specifically talking about his work, and that IS the context.

Moving on ...

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  So let me get this straight. Tacitus would have simply known the following:

1. Pilate was in Judea in Ad 28 - 36.

Where does he say that?

Exactly!

He didn't say it, but he would have to know it, so how did he know it?

Hints ...

"during the reign of Tiberius ..."

(he knew Pilate was Governor during the reign of Tiberius. This means he checked the records for a time-line to see when Pilate was a Governor)

"a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome ..."

(He knew a mischievous evil superstition resulted from the execution of Christ, which is not something that would be described to him in that way by any Christian. He also knew that the superstition began in Judea, and then traveled to Rome, indicating that he checked records for the sequence of events in which the superstition first broke out in Judea, and then afterwards it broke out in Rome.)

Even if a Christian told him, "Christ was crucified by Pontius Pilate," Tacitus would still need to look up records on Pontius Pilate to find out where Pilate was stationed, and when he was stationed there, otherwise he would not have been able to say "during the reign of Tiberius."

Tacitus knew that Pilate was governor of Judea during the reign of Tiberius, and that a mischevious superstition broke out in Judea that ended up in Rome. How and where could Pilate get these details which all surround the crucifixion of Christ?

From hearsay of the Christians? Can you imagine a Christian telling Tacitus, "Yeah, Christ was crucified by Pontius Pilate during the reign of Tiberius, and after he was crucified we started this mischievous evil superstition in Judea and it traveled all the way to Rome!"

If that's what you want to believe, more power to you.

Big Grin

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  2. Christus was the father of Christianity.

That is what the Christians claimed, yes, and that is what he would have known as an investigator of cults, yes.

If his use of written source materials in Annals and Histories is any indication of how he did his research, then he would undoubtedly use the same approach if he ever investigated local cults.

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  3. The Christians were blamed for the fire.
4. The Christians were arrested and convicted.
5. The Christians were burned and tortured, serving as a light post in the night.
6. The Christians were torn apart by wild dogs.
7. The Christians were nailed to crosses to mock them.
8. Nero staged this entire event in the Gardens.

This is the part he likely got from records (what he calls "reports", which may have been records or simply writers who wrote down the events in Rome). It is not the same thing as his description of what a Christian is in the first place, as I have repeatedly tried to explain to you.

See? You just did it again. Your cherry picked all the text surrounding Christ and pulled it away and agree that "this is the part he likely got from records." And the only part left over is the part that mentioned Christ.

So why wouldn't he have also gotten all this as hearsay from Christians too? Using your reasoning, every last thing he recorded as Roman history concerning the Christians could just be Christian hearsay, so why stop at just the mention of Christ?

The big question you need to ask yourself regarding this section in Annals is this:

Was the great Roman historian Cornelius Tacitus writing Roman history according to the Romans, or was he writing Christian history according to the Christians?

You choose.

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  In addition to all that, since it is just a small part of the events surrounding the great fires of Rome, I guess Tacitus just automatically knew everything about the Great Fires of Rome also? All the minute details about it was already known by him? No, we both know that is unreasonable. Therefore ...

If Tacitus was researching for information about the Great Fires of Rome and what Nero did, then all the information about that event including Pilate, Christus, Tiberius, and the Christians, would have been included as part of a previously written record.

I do suspect that the statements from the Christians being interviewed at the time of the executions would have been available, as records, to Tacitus. That is not the same thing as claiming that there is a document directly attesting to the actions of Pilate himself, 30 years prior.

But here is something you need to understand.

If the Christians made statements, who did they make them to? Obviously they made those statements to Roman authorities. Those Roman authorities existed some 50 years before Tacitus wrote Annals, so that means that their statements would have been officially recorded and preserved, otherwise Tacitus would never know about them.

Even in that scenario, we don;t see any hearsay. All we see is Tacitus getting his information from official Roman sources.

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  it is simply illogical and intellectually dishonest to expect Tacitus to have simply known all these minute details about the Christians, and since it is obvious that he would need previously written source materials to account for these details, that those source materials would also have included information on Christ and the Christians, Pilate and Tiberias, and all that followed.

You just can't cherry pick because it mentions Christ and make an illogical claim that Tacitus needed to use hearsay from the Christians about Pilate, Christ, Tiberius, and the Christians when the details in the text itself are so extensive as to warrant previously written source materials to chronicle the history.

You have no evidence of hearsay. You have no good supported reasoning for hearsay. And all the available evidence works against any position of hearsay.

All the available evidence can only point to Tacitus using previously written source materials, and none of it points to hearsay.

Your speculation accounts for nothing. It's worthless.

What part of "Tacitus was a religious cult researcher as part of a counsel of priests" do you not get? Of course he would have known what their claims were. Using source materials for the events under Nero and using official source materials for something alleged by the defendants to have happened in Judea are two different questions, yet you insist on conflating them. I am beginning to doubt your integrity.

You are just cherry picking again. In fact, you don't even have any evidence whatsoever that Tacitus ever investigated Christianity.

None.

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  But the actions of the Emperors- in this case Nero- are exactly what this section is all about. This is all about what Nero did to the Christians. The mentioning of Pilate and Tiberius is critical to explaining to the Roman audience about who the Christians were, when they originated, and from where they originated.

Pilate is critical to the text to explain the time and place of origin of the Christian religion. In addition to that bit of history, Pilate is connected to Christus as being the person who executed Christ. But the entire point of Tacitus mentioning Pilate is not because of his place in Christian theology, nor about his execution of Christ, but rather for Tacitus to set the place and time-line of the origins of the Christians.

After he sets the place and time-line for the origin of the Christians via the mentioning of Pilate and Tiberius, he then goes on to great detail about the persecution of the Christians under Nero.

That is what you need to see here from the perspective of a historian, and not from the perspective of Christians or Christian influences.

I agree with you entirely, here. This is what I have been saying all along. He is explaining to Roman readers who the Christians were and how they got into Rome, and why Nero took such a disastrous interest in them as scapegoats. It does not indicate in any way that he got the information about their origins from official records from Judea, however, which is my point.

It certainly does indicate that he got his information about their origins from official records because, as I said and you agreed to, he would need to lookup the information about Pilate and Tiberius in official Roman records in order to establish a proper time-line, and what this does is eliminate both Pilate and Tiberius from the hearsay argument.

Also, he would have learned all bout the Christians from official Roman records as well, since he goes into great detail about what a Roman Emperor- Nero- did to them.

Hence, with Pilate, Tiberius, and the Christians eliminated from the hearsay argument, all you have left is one single word:

Christ.

Are you seriously going to hang onto one single word, cherry picking it from among all the rest of the text, and still expect a credible hearsay argument when there is absolutely no evidence of hearsay whatsoever?

Quote:
(03-07-2016 12:54 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  You have no basis to fortify your claim here. There's no evidence within the text to suggest that the Christians provided any information about their beliefs or anything else. You are completely pulling at straws here.

And in addition to that, if you think that they did provide information, then you must admit that that information was written down somewhere for Tacitus to see since the event occurred some 50 years previous to Tacitus writing Annals.

And that indicates a written source.

Yes, it does imply a written source. But that written source, written at the time of Nero's actions, is not the same thing as a direct source demonstrating that Pilate actually did what the Christians claimed he did.

Do you see the bias you are using here? You are 100% convinced that the Christians furnished information to Tacitus, which is evidenced by your words of "a direct source demonstrating that Pilate actually did what the Christians claimed he did.

And even if it existed why wouldn't it be the same thing as a direct source? Considering that the text states that "then upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted," an immense multitude providing information amounts to nothing less than an immense consensus.

Quote: I consider it highly likely that their "information" was recorded during the interrogations (where they would likely "plead guilty" under torture), and that such records were easily accessible to Tacitus.

None of that addresses the basic contention that the events in Rome, and the description of Christians (which included their theological outlook and claimed problems with Pilate), are not the same thing as an official Roman record from Judea about what Pilate actually did. Without that link, all we have here are the claims of Christians and their executioners about the events under Nero. It's not enough to demonstrate that the Roman Christians were aware of an historical Christ, or that a record of Pilate's actions existed.

Try to work on your critical thinking skills, and stop straw-manning my arguments, please.

Here again is a moving-the-goalposts argument. You are asking for separate confirmation for one cherry picked word:

Christ

You are fine with everything else, but this one word absolutely requires a completely separate and exceptionally higher standard of evidence than anything else.

Ask yourself "why?" What motivates you to demand such an extremely high standard of evidence for one single word?

Again, if you seen "Robert" in place of Christ, you wouldn't reject any part of it. Your anti-Christian bias wouldn't kick in if it said Robert.

And that right there is the difference between a somewhat educated albeit biased layman such as yourself, and a highly skilled and highly trained unbiased historian.

The reality is, when it comes to honest history, the fact that it mentions Christ is absolutely meaningless. It's absolutely no different than if it said "Robert."

No difference whatsoever.
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