Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
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18-04-2012, 06:32 PM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
I've had to stay in the Peanut Gallery on this discussion because my default position for my entire life was that it was Historical Fact. So I'm inclined to believe Bucky's right...until I read Blood's argument, then he's right. I obviously need to go back and reprogram my brain...or better yet, just forget the Jesus shit all together!

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19-04-2012, 05:48 AM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
Ok guys, this is a long and complex post.

Just maybe I can help throw some light in here.

I believe "Jesus," a real flesh and blood character, probably existed. That does not for one minute mean everything in the gospels is true. Only Christians believe that. I say "he' probably existed for a number of reasons...I will elaborate if anyone is interested. i conceed, however, it is possible "he" may be entirely fictional. He certainly borrowed many features of his life from pre existing cults and the Old Testament.

The "real" Jesus, if he existed, tried to start a war with Rome, but they got to him first by stringing him up. 50-300 years later they then crucified him a second time by lying about his true legacy by writing and editing the gospels and in doing so tried to blame the Jews for his death.


Here is a profoundly interesting idea for your consideration. The gospels may have been written by Roman intellectuals, with the help of Jews, after the first Jewish war. Their purpose could have been to undermine Jewish messianic dreams ie to prevent Jews causing more trouble for the government. Titus had won the war in a militaristic sense, yet hadn't won control over common Jew's beliefs. His Jeebus was the answer. Titus was, in fact, Jeebus. He tried to get Jews to worship Jeebus, which, in effect, meant getting them to worship him. He was the son of God, who, in real life, had a father who was a god (Vespasian).

Paul, the true founder of Christian theology, was in my opinion, a Roman government agent. Consider how he was universally despised by Jews, yet treated well by the Roman government. Consider how he fought with the true disciples and family of Jesus. Consider how he heaped shit on most Jewish beliefs.

Josephus, who lived in Vespasian's and Titus' and Domitian's palace, in Rome, was a pro Roman propagandist turncoat who helped write the gospels, and wrote "wars of the Jews" as a parallel document to be read in conjunction with the gospels.

Acts was almost total fiction....it tried to link an historical Jesus and his followers (particularly James, his brother, and Peter) with the person and teachings of Paul. Yet these three, and in fact all true Jews, hated Paul the heretic's guts. Jesus, if he had been alive, would have despised Paul too.
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19-04-2012, 07:40 AM (This post was last modified: 19-04-2012 08:34 AM by arbmouser.)
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
I don't believe Jesus was a historical person at all. Evidence can be argued either way, but in the end I ask you, does it matter? Other than religious influences, he made no other impact on the world worthy of caring. Sure, the religions spurred have shaped our world, but so have many others each with their own fictitious characters. If he had advanced medicine, mathematics, engineering, or any other field that mattered then it might be worth looking into.
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19-04-2012, 08:15 AM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
(19-04-2012 05:48 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Ok guys, this is a long and complex post.

No it ain't. Tongue

Yeah, Paul was a Roman tool. Wink

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19-04-2012, 06:57 PM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
error
(19-04-2012 05:48 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Ok guys, this is a long and complex post.

Just maybe I can help throw some light in here.

I believe "Jesus," a real flesh and blood character, probably existed. That does not for one minute mean everything in the gospels is true. Only Christians believe that. I say "he' probably existed for a number of reasons...I will elaborate if anyone is interested. i conceed, however, it is possible "he" may be entirely fictional. He certainly borrowed many features of his life from pre existing cults and the Old Testament.

The "real" Jesus, if he existed, tried to start a war with Rome, but they got to him first by stringing him up. 50-300 years later they then crucified him a second time by lying about his true legacy by writing and editing the gospels and in doing so tried to blame the Jews for his death.


Here is a profoundly interesting idea for your consideration. The gospels may have been written by Roman intellectuals, with the help of Jews, after the first Jewish war. Their purpose could have been to undermine Jewish messianic dreams ie to prevent Jews causing more trouble for the government. Titus had won the war in a militaristic sense, yet hadn't won control over common Jew's beliefs. His Jeebus was the answer. Titus was, in fact, Jeebus. He tried to get Jews to worship Jeebus, which, in effect, meant getting them to worship him. He was the son of God, who, in real life, had a father who was a god (Vespasian).

Paul, the true founder of Christian theology, was in my opinion, a Roman government agent. Consider how he was universally despised by Jews, yet treated well by the Roman government. Consider how he fought with the true disciples and family of Jesus. Consider how he heaped shit on most Jewish beliefs.

Josephus, who lived in Vespasian's and Titus' and Domitian's palace, in Rome, was a pro Roman propagandist turncoat who helped write the gospels, and wrote "wars of the Jews" as a parallel document to be read in conjunction with the gospels.

Acts was almost total fiction....it tried to link an historical Jesus and his followers (particularly James, his brother, and Peter) with the person and teachings of Paul. Yet these three, and in fact all true Jews, hated Paul the heretic's guts. Jesus, if he had been alive, would have despised Paul too.
If they wrote the gospels and epistles trying to fool the Jews then they failed miserably. Jews immediately recognized that the NT books were fake, made-up bullshit.
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19-04-2012, 08:16 PM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
(19-04-2012 06:57 PM)Blood Wrote:  If they wrote the gospels and epistles trying to fool the Jews then they failed miserably. Jews immediately recognized that the NT books were fake, made-up bullshit.


And we know that, exactly ... how ?

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19-04-2012, 08:35 PM (This post was last modified: 19-04-2012 09:20 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
(19-04-2012 08:16 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(19-04-2012 06:57 PM)Blood Wrote:  If they wrote the gospels and epistles trying to fool the Jews then they failed miserably. Jews immediately recognized that the NT books were fake, made-up bullshit.


And we know that, exactly ... how ?


There were some, but very few true Jews who believed Paul's spiel. The communities he started reverted back to Judaism after his demise. The Jews despised him, as admitted in Acts. As Paul's ideas destroyed Jewish identity and turned "the Law" upside down and tried to make it irrelevant, the scheme never fooled true blue (do you have that phrase outside Australia?) Jews. It sure sucked in a lot of gentiles a few centuries later though.
(19-04-2012 07:40 AM)arbmouser Wrote:  I don't believe Jesus was a historical person at all. Evidence can be argued either way, but in the end I ask you, does it matter? Other than religious influences, he made no other impact on the world worthy of caring. Sure, the religions spurred have shaped our world, but so have many others each with their own fictitious characters. If he had advanced medicine, mathematics, engineering, or any other field that mattered then it might be worth looking into.


I agree Jeebus has contributed nothing to the world. In fact "his" toxic doctrines have done far more harm than good. From my perspective I hope to educate fence sitting Christians about who the real character, if he existed, really was, and thereby free them from the delusion the teachings are authoratitive.
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20-04-2012, 07:00 AM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
(19-04-2012 08:16 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(19-04-2012 06:57 PM)Blood Wrote:  If they wrote the gospels and epistles trying to fool the Jews then they failed miserably. Jews immediately recognized that the NT books were fake, made-up bullshit.


And we know that, exactly ... how ?
Because of all of the early Hebrew and Aramaic Christian books that we don't have. Because of all the Jewish Christian sects that didn't exist. We only know of two in fact -- the Ebionites and Nazoreans, and they were condemned as heretics. No early Christian writer speaks of "Jewish Christianity." Justin's Dialogue with Trypho documents a mid-second century Jewish person telling Justin that Christianity is fake, made-up bullshit.
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20-04-2012, 06:02 PM (This post was last modified: 20-04-2012 06:10 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
It seems to me that Bucky and Blood are both saying almost the same thing, which is...

"Jesus" the historical character, may or may not have existed, but the gospels are mainly evangelical constructs.

Bucky leans towards his likely existence, Blood leans towards him being 100% a creation.

You are both almost batting on the same team, and the differences are open to discussion. Sometimes its difficult to accept an alternative view. I know this for a fact, because I've written a damn book on the subject, and when one has spent years thinking and learning about something, one develops opinions LOL.

I'll throw some more of my 2c worth in. I am more in Bucky's camp ( although Blood makes some very good points) Why?

Well...to my mind, the gospels, if dissected, clearly tell the story of a political insurgent who tried to start a war with Rome, but the Romans killed him first. That story fits with what one would expect from a first century peasant fundamentalist Galilean Jew. "Jesus" says and does many things one would expect from a Jewish freedom fighter, not from the son of god preaching a new religion.

We know John the Baptist existed (John the dipper in Josephus). We know James existed (multiple sources...Josephus(probably), Eseubius, Paul's writings and others), we know Peter existed from Paul's writings. As these people existed, and Jesus mingled with them, this adds gravity to Jesus' existence. It is reasonable to assume John was the leader of the Nazarenes (a fundamentalist Jewish sect, probably a branch of the Essenes), then Jesus, then James.

My belief is that the Roman government, with the aid of Josephus and other Jewish intellectuals, created the gospels as propaganda tools to undermine the political aspirations of militant Jews. They loosely based the story on one of the wannabe messiahs from a few decades earlier, Yeshua (Jesus) from Galilee. This fits perfectly in with the times between the first (66-70 CE) and second (132-5 CE) Jewish wars, during which the government was trying to control pesky Jews.

The gospels were added to and edited for at least 200 years after they were first written, thereby incorporating lots of attractive ideas from other cults (for e.g. virgin birth, rising from the dead)

Does it matter whether Yeshua existed or not? Not really....except in the sense that if we can demonstrate from the gospels and from an examination of the history of the times that Jesus was not a Christian and not the son of God, it really helps deconstruct Christianity today...and I believe that is worth doing. That is why my book is titled "Get Over Christianity by Understanding It"

Am I definitely right about this? No. No one knows for sure. But "my" story is a hell of a lot more plausible than one about a son of god who preached passivity, was a Christian (a yet to be invented religion in Jesus' time), who sacrificed himself for your sins and then rose from the dead.
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20-04-2012, 08:43 PM
RE: Educate me. Was there a Jesus?
(20-04-2012 06:02 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  It seems to me that Bucky and Blood are both saying almost the same thing, which is...

"Jesus" the historical character, may or may not have existed, but the gospels are mainly evangelical constructs.

Bucky leans towards his likely existence, Blood leans towards him being 100% a creation.

You are both almost batting on the same team, and the differences are open to discussion. Sometimes its difficult to accept an alternative view. I know this for a fact, because I've written a damn book on the subject, and when one has spent years thinking and learning about something, one develops opinions LOL.

I'll throw some more of my 2c worth in. I am more in Bucky's camp ( although Blood makes some very good points) Why?

Well...to my mind, the gospels, if dissected, clearly tell the story of a political insurgent who tried to start a war with Rome, but the Romans killed him first. That story fits with what one would expect from a first century peasant fundamentalist Galilean Jew. "Jesus" says and does many things one would expect from a Jewish freedom fighter, not from the son of god preaching a new religion.

We know John the Baptist existed (John the dipper in Josephus). We know James existed (multiple sources...Josephus(probably), Eseubius, Paul's writings and others), we know Peter existed from Paul's writings. As these people existed, and Jesus mingled with them, this adds gravity to Jesus' existence. It is reasonable to assume John was the leader of the Nazarenes (a fundamentalist Jewish sect, probably a branch of the Essenes), then Jesus, then James.

My belief is that the Roman government, with the aid of Josephus and other Jewish intellectuals, created the gospels as propaganda tools to undermine the political aspirations of militant Jews. They loosely based the story on one of the wannabe messiahs from a few decades earlier, Yeshua (Jesus) from Galilee. This fits perfectly in with the times between the first (66-70 CE) and second (132-5 CE) Jewish wars, during which the government was trying to control pesky Jews.

The gospels were added to and edited for at least 200 years after they were first written, thereby incorporating lots of attractive ideas from other cults (for e.g. virgin birth, rising from the dead)

Does it matter whether Yeshua existed or not? Not really....except in the sense that if we can demonstrate from the gospels and from an examination of the history of the times that Jesus was not a Christian and not the son of God, it really helps deconstruct Christianity today...and I believe that is worth doing. That is why my book is titled "Get Over Christianity by Understanding It"

Am I definitely right about this? No. No one knows for sure. But "my" story is a hell of a lot more plausible than one about a son of god who preached passivity, was a Christian (a yet to be invented religion in Jesus' time), who sacrificed himself for your sins and then rose from the dead.
Like I said, I don't think this is an either/or question. All we can do is assess the texts and make hypothetical arguments. My main point is that the mythical Jesus hypothesis shouldn't be dismissed out of hand. I think it was a very real possibility. But excellent arguments are made the other way. There is a huge range of possibilities here, and none of them may be right. We're basically chasing rainbows and smoke rings.

The worst years of the Roman persecution of Christianity came well after the Jewish wars. By that time Christianity was entirely non-Jewish. So what was the purpose of throwing Christians to the lions? The Romans had served their supposed reason for writing the NT.
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