Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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03-07-2016, 10:31 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
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 ...

There is no evidence of the record of which you speak. None. You are attempting to imply that the Tiberius text's mention of Christian claims places Jesus in an historical context, without considering the other, simpler explanations.

There are many possibilities other than "was working from official Roman records from Judea that spoke of Pilate", and you are dishonest if you discount them.

Tacitus wrote Annals in 115 C.E. and was known to be an investigator of cults, which obviously would include Christianity. We know that by 115 C.E., all of the Gospels were written, copied, and circulated among the churches. Think Tacitus didn't get his hands on one?

In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, Herod tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene— 2during the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. (Gospel of Luke, Chapter 3)

Think the Christians didn't repeat any of that, during their evangelizing? Think that a member of the council didn't hear about that? Think he might have read it for himself? Think a Senator who wrote about all of the recent Caesars might not have known when Tiberius was Emperor?

And I have explained that records of the fire in Rome and records of Judea are not the same thing, but you have refused to acknowledge it. You have provided no evidence, no matter how many times you declare it to be otherwise.

It is you who is making a positive claim, here, that Tacitus was working from records about Pilate's actions with regard to the Christ, despite a lack of any claim by him personally of doing so. I have shown you multiple reasons why this is not necessarily the case, and shown you that it is odd, given his ability to access official records, that he would get something like the rank wrong. It is not at all odd that he would know the time period in which the man claimed by the Christians to have killed their Christ was governor of Judea, and what Emperor ruled during those years.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  He is specifically talking about his work, and that IS the context.

Moving on ...

Well, just hold up there, bub. He is talking about his work. Let's take a closer look at what he actually says before we "move on":

[4.10] In relating the death of Drusus I have followed the narrative of most of the best historians. But I would not pass over a rumour of the time, the strength of which is not even yet exhausted. Sejanus, it is said, having seduced Livia into crime, next secured, by the foulest means, the consent of Lygdus, the eunuch, as from his youth and beauty he was his master's favourite, and one of his principal attendants. When those who were in the secret had decided on the time and place of the poisoning, Sejanus, with the most consummate daring, reversed his plan, and, whispering an accusation against Drusus of intending to poison his father, warned Tiberius to avoid the first draught offered him as he was dining at his son's house. Thus deceived, the old emperor, on sitting down to the banquet, took the cup and handed it to Drusus. His suspicions were increased when Drusus, in perfect unconsciousness, drank it off with youthful eagerness, apparently, out of fear and shame, bringing on himself the death which he had plotted against his father.

[4.11] These popular rumours, over and above the fact that they are not vouched for by any good writer, may be instantly refuted. For who, with moderate prudence, far less Tiberius with his great experience, would have thrust destruction on a son, without even hearing him, with his own hand too, and with an impossibility of returning to better thoughts. Surely he would rather have had the slave who handed the poison, tortured, have sought to discover the traitor, in short, would have been as hesitating and tardy in the case of an only son hitherto unconvicted of any crime, as he was naturally even with strangers. But as Sejanus had the credit of contriving every sort of wickedness, the fact that he was the emperor's special favourite, and that both were hated by the rest of the world, procured belief for any monstrous fiction, and rumour too always has a dreadful side in regard to the deaths of men in power. Besides, the whole process of the crime was betrayed by Apicata, Sejanus's wife, and fully divulged, under torture, by Eudemus and Lygdus. No writer has been found sufficiently malignant to fix the guilt on Tiberius, though every circumstance was scrutinized and exaggerated. My object in mentioning and refuting this story is, by a conspicuous example, to put down hearsay, 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 which has not been perverted into romance.

(Emphasis my own.) He tells an entire story about a rumor, which he points out logically cannot be the way the rumors claim, and then explicitly states what the object of his refutation is: to put down hearsay versions of the tale of the death of Drusus so that those who read his work would not buy into the "perverted into romance" version of the story. There is no allusion whatsoever to anything else outside of this tale. I cannot believe you would be so dishonest as to claim otherwise.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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!"

You're claiming, now, that a Senator of Rome who wrote about the Emperors didn't know when Tiberius reigned? Or that an investigator of cults didn't know that Christianity was a Judaism-based cult? Really?!?

Christian Gospels (and those Christians re-telling the stories of the Gospels) openly claim that Pilate was the governor of Judea during the reign of Tiberius. All it would take would have been for him to hear that they made the claim, or read their literature, all of which would have been part of his job as a member of the Quindecimviri sacris faciundis.

Leaping, instead, to the conclusion that there is a Roman record of Christ's actual crucifixion written at the time of the trial by Romans and sent to Rome, from which Tacitus was working, is totally illogical... especially given the rank-error issue. A much more likely explanation is that whatever records were written (and from which he was working) were taken down at the time of the trials of the arsonists of Rome, at which time Procurator was indeed the correct title for a governor of Judea.

You make this leap because you need it to be true; as a non-mythicist whose views would not be changed if Jesus was real, I could care less whether or not this document was written (I think it would be awesome if it did), so I am evaluating the evidence with a neutral eye.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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.

Or he could talk to members of those cults, people who interact with members of those cults, and read the scriptures of those cults, as we do when investigating cults, today. Simply copying down what others wrote about the cults wouldn't be very good investigation, now, would it?

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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?

Um, wut?

That's not using my reasoning at all, or any reasoning I can distinguish. As I have been ENDLESSLY SAYING, there is a distinction between the claim "there were records of the fire and the events surrounding it" and "there were records of Pilate's execution of Jesus in Judea". That's the kind of thing that led me to call you "dense".

The "reports" I mention (and which Tacitus writes about, there) are of the fire, and who was blamed for it. Some blamed Nero, others did not. But it was apparently an issue for Nero that he was being blamed, so, "consequently, to get rid of the reports..."

Tacitus read both sets of reports, and tries to tell the story from a position of neutrality. The other record you are implying that exists here, a record from Judea about Pilate's execution of Jesus, would be a separate document from decades prior to the fire. It is a non sequitur to say that if he was working from documents about the fires/Christians, then he must have been working from documents about the execution of Christ.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

This again? Have I not answered this already? Oh right, I did, and in detail.

But I'll sum up: he explained the Christians' basic story to a Roman audience who would not likely know who the fuck they were, outside of Rome and the Hellenic provinces, as a footnote to a larger story about the history of a Roman Emperor, Nero. It's not an "either/or", and you're just being obtuse about it.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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.

They made them to the inquisitors. You were kind enough to point to a chapter in Annals (chp. 4) where Tacitus explains that suspects were tortured in interrogations. To this day, the Christians have a "martyr complex" about denying Christ under threat of torture and death, from these sorts of events. I do not have a problem with the documents that came from such interrogations being used in Tacitus' reporting of the fire and what happened thereafter.

But as I have said, over and over again, there is a difference between Roman records written at the time of the fires and the record you are claiming exists about Pilate and the crucifixion.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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.

Wait, WHAT!? Shocking

You're seriously going to try to claim that a member of the quindecimviri sacris faciundis, did not investigate a religious group that, 50 years prior, had been big enough to be the source of public spectacles when burned alive, fed to animals, et cetera, and to draw the ire of the Emperor in the first place? What the fuck do you think the council was there for?

Holy crap are you dense! Facepalm

(This is getting long, so I'm going to copy the rest into a Notepad window, and do the rest in a second post...)

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03-07-2016, 10:38 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

History is a fickle bitch. Certainly, recorded history needs its checks and balances much in the same way that anything is logically and reasonably accomplished in this world.

Take Columbus for example. When it was learned that he had not discovered America, did that fact change in history books across America? I don't know, I have not been in elementary school for quite a long time.

History is much like religion.

Jesus has his roots in history as well as religion, but yet there remains no evidence for his existence. That is a fact that cannot be denied.
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03-07-2016, 10:48 PM (This post was last modified: 03-07-2016 11:02 PM by RocketSurgeon76.)
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

LIAR!!!

I agreed to no such thing.

[Edit to Add: I feel I need to give an example, to explain why this pisses me off so much. Even if I concede that Tacitus needed to look at records in order to establish the time-frame in which they ruled (I do not), it does not follow to say that because they referenced those records, that there also existed a record of the events in question-- the trial and crucifixion. It would be like saying "Okay, you looked at the record and found out Abraham Lincoln was definitely President of the United States from 1861-1864, therefore you surely saw the records about him being a Vampire Hunter, as the movie showed him to be!" This is preposterous that you would conflate the two claims like that, or claim that my agreement in any way supported the assertion you made thereafter. You are a liar.]

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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?

Straw man argument. Already addressed most of it. Too tired of your shit at this point to re-hash it.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  
Quote: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.

I am convinced that Tacitus got the claims about Pilate's actions in executing Christ from the Christians, and I believe I have laid out an excellent case for why that would be (including review of the records written after the fire by the Roman investigators who interrogated the Christians, but also his own work on the QSF).

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

You just made my case for me. Thanks! Of course there was a consensus among them. If they told it to others, and it was written down, then it is nevertheless an indirect source of information, no matter how many of them told the story they learned from whoever converted them to Christianity.

I do not argue with the question of whether the "immense multitude" of those Christians who were convicted told the same story about Pilate and Christ. Why would they not do so? That's part of what made them Christians. However, they would have gotten their information about it from the writers of the Gospels and/or from evangelists who brought the stories to them. A million people repeating a secondhand story is still hearsay.

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

[Image: 8bce00e2853c6e2114fa905d9e8feaba2ba1bc07...b337a5.jpg]

(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

You're quite right, it makes no difference whatsoever. But if you were claiming that we had evidence via Tacitus of Pilate executing Robert, when Robert was the leader of the cult being described by Tacitus for his Roman audience, I would make the same argument. I treat no claim and no religion with favoritism.

You freakin' Christians and your martyr complexes. Rolleyes

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03-07-2016, 11:01 PM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 07:28 PM)GoingUp Wrote:  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.

I've been frankly bored with this topic for a while but I just wanted to step back in to say something: I don't know what kinda academic you are pretending to be but one of the very first things they teach in History is that every single historian has his bias, and often many of them.

"The facts are really not at all like fish on the fishmonger's slab. They are like fish swimming about in a vast and sometimes inaccessible ocean; and what the historian catches will depend, partly on chance, but mainly on what part of the ocean he chooses to fish in and what tackle he chooses to use – these two factors being, of course, determined by the kind of fish he wants to catch. By and large, the historian will get the kind of facts he wants. History means interpretation."
~Edward Hallett Carr~

Any "historian" that claims to be unbiased is lying, to his readers or himself.

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04-07-2016, 02:51 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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04-07-2016, 02:52 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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04-07-2016, 02:54 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
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04-07-2016, 04:33 AM
Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(03-07-2016 04:24 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  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.

I don't know what demonstration means.

Tacitus is evidence in support of a historical Jesus.

Do you agree with that?





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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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04-07-2016, 04:52 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(04-07-2016 04:33 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 04:24 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  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.

I don't know what demonstration means.

Tacitus is evidence in support of a historical Jesus.

Do you agree with that?

It is very weak evidence as it is hearsay. Drinking Beverage

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04-07-2016, 04:54 AM
RE: Contemporary Accounts of Jesus
(04-07-2016 02:54 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  
(03-07-2016 03:54 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(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?

"Says the guy who claims that a supposed early sect that believed in a non-historical messiah, was "Jewish"."
If you think the real, original followers/supporters of a (possible) Jesus were anything but Jewish, both in a cultural and religious sense, you are living in la la land.

That is like claiming Osama Bin Laden and all his followers were/are not Muslims.

Your ignorance about the the history is huge. Please do some reading. Google "Nazarenes" or "the way."

Fucking computers, I'm off for a beer

N.B. Fixed mis-matched quotes

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