Poll: Did Jesus Exist?
He was a real person.
Jesus is a complete myth.
He may have been real, but has become so shrouded by myth that we can't know anything about him.
Other- please explain.
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Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
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07-10-2014, 01:40 PM (This post was last modified: 07-10-2014 01:58 PM by anonymous66.)
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 01:33 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(07-10-2014 01:20 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  And I'd be interested in what you think of my site..
http://www.ahistoricaljesus.com

My argument is actually very simple...

Most contemporary scholars of antiquity agree that Jesus existed, and most biblical scholars and classical historians see the theories of his non-existence as effectively refuted.

I propose those experts should be respected and taken seriously.

This is the same line of reasoning I use when I accept evolution and human caused global warming, and why I immunize my child. Could the experts be wrong? Of course they could. But, consider what is most probable. It always comes down to deciding what is most probable.


and I must point out that what mythicists have is an argument from authority. Thier expert, Richard Carrier has convinced them.. They say he's an expert, so he should know... I say look into his claims for yourself. Check out his sources... Understand why the majority of experts in the field DON'T agree with him..

There is absolutely no contemporaneous evidence of the existence of the Biblical Jesus. Zilch, Zip. Nada.

The Bible is not contemporaneous to the events.

The evidence for a historical Jesus is spectacularly weak.

Do you ever wonder why it is that the experts in the field of ancient history disagree with you?

Are they all crazy? Misinformed? Gullible? Is it a conspiracy?

Have you ever thought about educating yourself in the methods historians actually use to determine historicity?

Do you have any idea just how sketchy the information we have about such figures as Socrates truly is? He didn't even write anything down.

A friend of mine wrote this.. it applies here..

Quote:There's a lot of shit that isn't contemporary.

Livy wrote about stuff (that happened) centuries before his time.

Zero contemporary sources about Alexander the Great survive, excepting a few fragments.

Herodotus is at least a generation removed from the Persian Wars.

Here's your homework:
Look up the primary sources for Hannibal crossing the Alps. The event took place in 218 BCE.

List the sources for it, and when they were written.
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07-10-2014, 02:23 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 01:20 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  And I'd be interested in what you think of my site..
http://www.ahistoricaljesus.com

My argument is actually very simple...

Most contemporary scholars of antiquity agree that Jesus existed, and most biblical scholars and classical historians see the theories of his non-existence as effectively refuted.

I propose those experts should be respected and taken seriously.

This is the same line of reasoning I use when I accept evolution and human caused global warming, and why I immunize my child. Could the experts be wrong? Of course they could. But, consider what is most probable. It always comes down to deciding what is most probable.


and I must point out that what mythicists have is an argument from authority. Thier expert, Richard Carrier has convinced them.. They say he's an expert, so he should know... I say look into his claims for yourself. Check out his sources... Understand why he DOES NOT agree with the consensus of experts in the field of ancient history

You forgot to say exactly where Carrier was in error.
As for your "most historians" ... let's see the polls, or even just ONE, and the method for how the participants were chosen, and what exactly their specialties are. Without that, you assertions concerning your OPINION about what historians think or don't think are worth nothing.

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07-10-2014, 02:29 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
This could be a thread by itself, but I'll put it here because it seems relevant.

Why do people often use the "there's no evidence for Socrates (or Alexander the Great, or whoever else), therefore he must not have existed, right?" argument when discussing whether or not Jesus existed? The comparison is apples to oranges. No one claims that Socrates was a god on Earth, here to save people from an eternity of hellfire. Who cares if Socrates actually existed in a physical form here on Earth? The ideas attributed to him were developed by someone(s) and are useful to our lives today (as are the ideas about peace and goodwill attributed to Jesus, by the way.)

If Jesus didn't exist as a flesh-and-blood man then he can't be the Christ, at least as far as modern Christians and the Bible portray him, i.e. born and died to save mankind from sins. If he's not the Christ, then he's at best a prophet of whatever god(s) actually exist (if any, in fact, do), at worst he is a made up collection of stories from an amalgam of Jewish lore imposed on the basic framework of the dying-and-rising god theme. If he did exist in human form then that starts a whole new conversation about whether or not he was a god as well as a man, but:

No Jesus (the man) = no Christ (the god) = Christianity is fundamentally incorrect = huge implications.

No Socrates = dialectic method and other ideas still relevant to modern people = few/no implications.

"I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me."
- Isaac Newton
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07-10-2014, 02:32 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 01:40 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  
(07-10-2014 01:33 PM)Chas Wrote:  There is absolutely no contemporaneous evidence of the existence of the Biblical Jesus. Zilch, Zip. Nada.

The Bible is not contemporaneous to the events.

The evidence for a historical Jesus is spectacularly weak.

Do you ever wonder why it is that the experts in the field of ancient history disagree with you?

Are they all crazy? Misinformed? Gullible? Is it a conspiracy?

Have you ever thought about educating yourself in the methods historians actually use to determine historicity?

Do you have any idea just how sketchy the information we have about such figures as Socrates truly is? He didn't even write anything down.

A friend of mine wrote this.. it applies here..

Quote:There's a lot of shit that isn't contemporary.

Livy wrote about stuff (that happened) centuries before his time.

Zero contemporary sources about Alexander the Great survive, excepting a few fragments.

Herodotus is at least a generation removed from the Persian Wars.

Here's your homework:
Look up the primary sources for Hannibal crossing the Alps. The event took place in 218 BCE.

List the sources for it, and when they were written.

We don't know if Socrates existed and, while interesting, it is not important.

I am aware of historical methodology, some of it is questionable.
Are you aware of the methods of archeology and paleontology? Because those sciences, in the hands of believers, have shown that the Bible is a-historical.

There has to be supporting evidence for non-contemporaneous sources.
Hell, there has to be supporting evidence for contemporaneous sources, as well.

And do you have any support for your rather imprecise and grandiose claim that "... the experts in the field of ancient history disagree with you"?

Some do, some don't.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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07-10-2014, 02:33 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 02:23 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(07-10-2014 01:20 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  And I'd be interested in what you think of my site..
http://www.ahistoricaljesus.com

My argument is actually very simple...

Most contemporary scholars of antiquity agree that Jesus existed, and most biblical scholars and classical historians see the theories of his non-existence as effectively refuted.

I propose those experts should be respected and taken seriously.

This is the same line of reasoning I use when I accept evolution and human caused global warming, and why I immunize my child. Could the experts be wrong? Of course they could. But, consider what is most probable. It always comes down to deciding what is most probable.


and I must point out that what mythicists have is an argument from authority. Thier expert, Richard Carrier has convinced them.. They say he's an expert, so he should know... I say look into his claims for yourself. Check out his sources... Understand why he DOES NOT agree with the consensus of experts in the field of ancient history

You forgot to say exactly where Carrier was in error.
As for your "most historians" ... let's see the polls, or even just ONE, and the method for how the participants were chosen, and what exactly their specialties are. Without that, you assertions concerning your OPINION about what historians think or don't think are worth nothing.

Regarding Carrier... I'll get to that.....

Regarding the phrase "most historians"... Are you denying that the following information is valid?

Quote: Historical Jesus refers to scholarly reconstructions of the life of Jesus,[3][4][5] based on critical methods including critical analysis of gospel texts as the primary source for his biography, along with consideration of the historical and cultural context in which he lived.[3][4][6] These reconstructions accept that Jesus existed,[7][8][9][10] although scholars differ about the beliefs and teachings of Jesus as well as the accuracy of the accounts of his life, and the only two events subject to "almost universal assent" are that Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist and was crucified by the order of the Roman Prefect Pontius Pilate.[11][12][13][14]



Historical elements
Existence

Most contemporary scholars of antiquity agree that Jesus existed, and most biblical scholars and classical historians see the theories of his non-existence as effectively refuted.[7][9][10][30][31][32] We have no indication that writers in antiquity who opposed Christianity questioned the existence of Jesus.[33][34] There is, however, widespread disagreement among scholars on the details of the life of Jesus mentioned in the gospel narratives, and on the meaning of his teachings.[14] Scholars differ on the historicity of specific episodes described in the Biblical accounts of Jesus,[14] and historians tend to look upon supernatural or miraculous claims about Jesus as questions of faith, rather than historical fact.[35]



7.In a 2011 review of the state of modern scholarship, Bart Ehrman (a secular agnostic) wrote: "He certainly existed, as virtually every competent scholar of antiquity, Christian or non-Christian, agrees" B. Ehrman, 2011 Forged : writing in the name of God ISBN 978-0-06-207863-6. page 285
9.Michael Grant (a classicist) states that "In recent years, 'no serious scholar has ventured to postulate the non historicity of Jesus' or at any rate very few, and they have not succeeded in disposing of the much stronger, indeed very abundant, evidence to the contrary." in Jesus: An Historian's Review of the Gospels by Micjhael Grant 2004 ISBN 1898799881 page 200
10.Richard A. Burridge states: "There are those who argue that Jesus is a figment of the Church’s imagination, that there never was a Jesus at all. I have to say that I do not know any respectable critical scholar who says that any more." in Jesus Now and Then by Richard A. Burridge and Graham Gould (Apr 1, 2004) ISBN 0802809774 page 34
11.Jesus Remembered by James D. G. Dunn 2003 ISBN 0-8028-3931-2 page 339 states of baptism and crucifixion that these "two facts in the life of Jesus command almost universal assent".
12.Prophet and Teacher: An Introduction to the Historical Jesus by William R. Herzog (4 Jul 2005) ISBN 0664225284 pages 1-6
13.Crossan, John Dominic (1995). Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography. HarperOne. p. 145. ISBN 0-06-061662-8. "That he was crucified is as sure as anything historical can ever be, since both Josephus and Tacitus ... agree with the Christian accounts on at least that basic fact.
14."Jesus as a Figure in History: How Modern Historians View the Man from Galilee by Mark Allan Powell 1998 ISBN 0-664-25703-8 pages 168–173
The Jesus Quest: The Third Search for the Jew of Nazareth
30.Robert E. Van Voorst Jesus Outside the New Testament: An Introduction to the Ancient Evidence Eerdmans Publishing, 2000. ISBN 0-8028-4368-9 page 16 states: "biblical scholars and classical historians regard theories of non-existence of Jesus as effectively refuted"
31.James D. G. Dunn "Paul's understanding of the death of Jesus" in Sacrifice and Redemption edited by S. W. Sykes (Dec 3, 2007) Cambridge University Press ISBN 052104460X pages 35-36 states that the theories of non-existence of Jesus are "a thoroughly dead thesis"
32.The Gospels and Jesus by Graham Stanton, 1989 ISBN 0192132415 Oxford University Press, page 145 states : "Today nearly all historians, whether Christians or not, accept that Jesus existed".
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07-10-2014, 02:39 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 02:33 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  Regarding Carrier... I'll get to that.....

Regarding the phrase "most historians"... Are you denying that the following information is valid?

From the same source (Wikipedia):
Quote:There is no physical or archeological evidence for Jesus, and all the sources we have are documentary. The sources for the historical Jesus are mainly Christian writings, such as the gospels and the purported letters of the apostles. The authenticity and reliability of these sources has been questioned by many scholars, and few events mentioned in the gospels are universally accepted.

Quote:The historical analysis techniques used by Biblical scholars have been questioned, and according to James Dunn it is not possible "to construct (from the available data) a Jesus who will be the real Jesus."

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07-10-2014, 03:08 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
Sounds to me, Mouse, that you don't know what the fuck you are talking about.

Quote:A greater gaffe in defense of Jesus' historicity is to make claims that are conspicuously opposite the truth of the matter, as when E.P.
Sanders boasts that 'the sources for Jesus are better ... than those that
deal with Alexander [the Great]'. A more suicidal remark for his case
could hardly be imag­ined. Unlike Jesus, we have over half a dozen
relatively objective histori­ans discussing the history of Alexander the Great (most notably Diodorus, Dionysius, Rufus, Trogus, Plutarch and
more). These are not romances or propagandists, least of all fanatical
worshipers, or anyone concerned about dogma, but disinterested historical writers employing some of the recog­nized skills of critical analysis of their day on a wide body of sources they had available that we do not. Which doesn't mean we trust everything they say, but we still cannot name even one such person for Jesus, and 'none' is not 'more' than half a dozen.

Richard Carrier - On the Historicity of Jesus Pg. 21-22

Not surprising. Jesus freaks rarely do.

Note that Carrier does not even bother with the physical evidence for Alexander such as statues, coins, inscriptions, etc., which archaeology has uncovered. It is not surprising. He is not an archaeologist but a historian. You, OTOH, are some jerkoff with a bible.

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07-10-2014, 04:45 PM (This post was last modified: 07-10-2014 07:06 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
(07-10-2014 02:33 PM)anonymous66 Wrote:  
(07-10-2014 02:23 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  You forgot to say exactly where Carrier was in error.
As for your "most historians" ... let's see the polls, or even just ONE, and the method for how the participants were chosen, and what exactly their specialties are. Without that, you assertions concerning your OPINION about what historians think or don't think are worth nothing.

Regarding Carrier... I'll get to that.....

Regarding the phrase "most historians"... Are you denying that the following information is valid?

Yes I am.
The gospels are not "historical accounts" in any way. They are statements of belief (ONLY "the good news") by believers for believers to remind themselves what they already believed for use in liturgical worship services. They were not written for "reading". Only 5% of the population was literate. The other gospels found later, (at Nag Hamadi in Egypt, present all sorts of bizarre and different tales). The reason there are the 4 we have was a due to a capricious decision. During the Pax Romana trouble-makers were executed by standing order, NOT by specific orders of the local Roman authority. There was more than likely no trial. The gospels contradict themselves about what happened. The Sanhedrin was never once in all of history called into session on Passover weekend. So at least part of the proceedings were made up. Galilean peasants were never brought into the presence of Roman aristocrats. IF he had been been important enough to be executed, then IF what was said to have followed had happened, there would have been some attempt to locate him AFTER he was supposedly resurrected. If the temple curtain had spontaneously torn, a Jewish historian would have said something. All there is, is a deafening silence. Pilate's secretary wrote about most things he did. He mentions nothing about this. Ehrman did not adequately answer Carrier's questions. Carrier IS a "serious" scholar. So Grant's assertion is simply false. Josephus said nothing about Jesus, and Tacitus talked about a "Chrestus" even while spelling "Christians" correctly. So He's simply wrong. I don't care what CHRISTIAN scholars say. The questions remain unanswered. I still want to see a poll of scholars who are competent to discuss the period in question. And I want to know EXACTLY on what basis they make the claims they do, without presenting ANYTHING except assertions, concerning what historians do or do not think, (almost ALL of whom, have actually NOT done an real careful objective look at the question). If all the historians you quote are just reasserting what each other have said, and no one has actually looked into the matter, (and which of them is actually qualified in specifically Ancient Near Eastern history of THAT specific period and culture ???) then it's just a circle jerk. I presume it is that, until proven otherwise. Any historian that thinks the gospels are in any way "historical" is simply demonstrating their ignorance of that particular form of ancient Near eastern literature. But I suspect virtually all of the ones you quote actually have no real specialized knowledge of that culture and those particular texts. Being an historian does not automatically grant anyone ipso facto knowledge of all periods of history, and literature.

We also know for a FACT, that the Church Fathers valued deception, *IF* it promoted their cause, (called "pious fraud"). The ends justified the means. How do we know this? They wrote about it, and admitted it. They thought they "knew best" what the poor little ignorant idiots needed. NOTHING they said was reliable, if it promoted their opinions. http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...rly-church

I still want to know how you could possibly have done the exhaustive study you claimed to have done, yet never have run into any of the other Jesuses.
Something reeks here.

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07-10-2014, 05:13 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
1. No written accounts from anyone who lived at the exact time of when he was around. Everything I am aware of is written 20 years or 200 years afterward which gives more than enough time for rumors and tall tales to arise about anything.

2. No artifacts that can be confirmed to of been owned by him that can be verified through a reliable source.

3. No corpse and special pleading through the story itself where his apparent "physical" body left makes it impossible to ever confirm his actual death or existence.

4. Every event that ever happened in his life, Like all those babies in an entire city of THOUSANDS of people were infanticide. Not one single shred of evidence shows that event ever happened. Nothing, none, shut up..no..your wrong...that does not count as evidence and if that other point your about to make is true, I need to see your sources with the original source material please.

It never happened.


5. Conclusion - Jesus never existed....period.


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07-10-2014, 11:35 PM
RE: Did Jesus Exist? Or Was He a Myth?
Quote:1. No written accounts from anyone who lived at the exact time of when he was around. Everything I am aware of is written 20 years or 200 years afterward which gives more than enough time for rumors and tall tales to arise about anything.

2. No artifacts that can be confirmed to of been owned by him that can be verified through a reliable source.

3. No corpse and special pleading through the story itself where his apparent "physical" body left makes it impossible to ever confirm his actual death or existence.

4. Every event that ever happened in his life, Like all those babies in an entire city of THOUSANDS of people were infanticide. Not one single shred of evidence shows that event ever happened. Nothing, none, shut up..no..your wrong...that does not count as evidence and if that other point your about to make is true, I need to see your sources with the original source material please.

It never happened.


5. Conclusion - Jesus never existed....period.

Yeah cause you were there 2000 years ago.

Quote:The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

Psalm 14:1
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