Jesus myth
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
04-01-2014, 12:41 PM
Jesus myth
No one has the slightest physical evidence to support a historical Jesus; no artifacts, dwelling, works of carpentry, or self-written manuscripts. All claims about Jesus derive from writings of other people. There occurs no contemporary Roman record that shows Pontius Pilate executing a man named Jesus. Devastating to historians, there occurs not a single contemporary writing that mentions Jesus. All documents about Jesus came well after the life of the alleged Jesus from either: unknown authors, people who had never met an earthly Jesus, or from fraudulent, mythical or allegorical writings. Although one can argue that many of these writings come from fraud or interpolations, I will use the information and dates to show that even if these sources did not come from interpolations, they could still not serve as reliable evidence for a historical Jesus, simply because all sources about Jesus derive from hearsay accounts.

Hearsay means information derived from other people rather than on a witness' own knowledge.

Courts of law do not generally allow hearsay as testimony, and nor does honest modern scholarship. Hearsay does not provide good evidence, and therefore, we should dismiss it.

If you do not understand this, imagine yourself confronted with a charge for a crime which you know you did not commit. You feel confident that no one can prove guilt because you know that there exists no evidence whatsoever for the charge against you. Now imagine that you stand present in a court of law that allows hearsay as evidence. When the prosecution presents its case, everyone who takes the stand against you claims that you committed the crime, not as a witness themselves, but solely because they claim other people said so. None of these other people, mind you, ever show up in court, nor can anyone find them.

Hearsay does not work as evidence because we have no way of knowing whether the person lied, or simply based his or her information on wrongful belief or bias. We know from history about witchcraft trials and kangaroo courts that hearsay provides neither reliable nor fair statements of evidence. We know that mythology can arise out of no good information whatsoever. We live in a world where many people believe in demons, UFOs, ghosts, or monsters, and an innumerable number of fantasies believed as fact taken from nothing but belief and hearsay. It derives from these reasons why hearsay cannot serves as good evidence, and the same reasoning must go against the claims of a historical Jesus or any other historical person.

Authors of ancient history today, of course, can only write from indirect observation in a time far removed from their aim. But a valid historian's own writing gets cited with sources that trace to the subject themselves, or to eyewitnesses and artifacts. For example, a historian today who writes about the life of George Washington, of course, can not serve as an eyewitness, but he can provide citations to documents which give personal or eyewitness accounts. None of the historians about Jesus give reliable sources to eyewitnesses, therefore all we have remains as hearsay.

What appears most revealing of all, comes not from what people later wrote about Jesus but what people did not write about him. Consider that not a single historian, philosopher, scribe or follower who lived before or during the alleged time of Jesus ever mentions him!

If, indeed, the Gospels portray a historical look at the life of Jesus, then the one feature that stands out prominently within the stories shows that people claimed to know Jesus far and wide, not only by a great multitude of followers but by the great priests, the Roman governor Pilate, and Herod who claims that he had heard "of the fame of Jesus" (Matt 14:1)". One need only read Matt: 4:25 where it claims that "there followed him [Jesus] great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judea, and from beyond Jordan." The gospels mention, countless times, the great multitude that followed Jesus and crowds of people who congregated to hear him. So crowded had some of these gatherings grown, that Luke 12:1 alleges that an "innumerable multitude of people... trode one upon another." Luke 5:15 says that there grew "a fame abroad of him: and great multitudes came together to hear..." The persecution of Jesus in Jerusalem drew so much attention that all the chief priests and scribes, including the high priest Caiaphas, not only knew about him but helped in his alleged crucifixion. (see Matt 21:15-23, 26:3, Luke 19:47, 23:13). The multitude of people thought of Jesus, not only as a teacher and a miracle healer, but a prophet (see Matt:14:5).

So here we have the gospels portraying Jesus as famous far and wide, a prophet and healer, with great multitudes of people who knew about him, including the greatest Jewish high priests and the Roman authorities of the area, and not one person records his existence during his lifetime? If the poor, the rich, the rulers, the highest priests, and the scribes knew about Jesus, who would not have heard of him?

Then we have a particular astronomical event that would have attracted the attention of anyone interested in the "heavens." According to Luke 23:44-45, there occurred "about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour, and the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst." Yet not a single mention of such a three hour ecliptic event got recorded by anyone, including the astronomers and astrologers, anywhere in the world, including Pliny the Elder and Seneca who both recorded eclipses from other dates. Note also that, for obvious reasons, solar eclipses can't occur during a full moon (passovers always occur during full moons), Nor does a single contemporary person write about the earthquake described in Matthew 27:51-54 where the earth shook, rocks ripped apart (rent), and graves opened.

Matthew 2 describes Herod and all of Jerusalem as troubled by the worship of the infant Jesus. Herod then had all of the children of Bethlehem slain. If such extraordinary infanticides of this magnitude had occurred, why didn't anyone write about it?

Some apologists attempt to dig themselves out of this problem by claiming that there lived no capable historians during that period, or due to the lack of education of the people with a writing capacity, or even sillier, the scarcity of paper gave reason why no one recorded their "savior." But the area in and surrounding Jerusalem served, in fact, as the center of education and record keeping for the Jewish people. The Romans, of course, also kept many records. Moreover, the gospels mention scribes many times, not only as followers of Jesus but the scribes connected with the high priests. And as for historians, there lived plenty at the time who had the capacity and capability to record, not only insignificant gossip, but significant events, especially from a religious sect who drew so much popular attention through an allegedly famous and infamous Jesus.

Take, for example, the works of Philo Judaeus whose birth occurred in 20 B.C.E. and died 50 C.E. He lived as the greatest Jewish-Hellenistic philosopher and historian of the time and lived in the area of Jerusalem during the alleged life of Jesus. He wrote detailed accounts of the Jewish events that occurred in the surrounding area. Yet not once, in all of his volumes of writings, do we read a single account of a Jesus "the Christ." Nor do we find any mention of Jesus in Seneca's (4? B.C.E. - 65 C.E.) writings, nor from the historian Pliny the Elder (23? - 79 C.E.).

If, indeed, such a well known Jesus existed, as the gospels allege, does any reader here think it reasonable that, at the very least, the fame of Jesus would not have reached the ears of one of these men?

Amazingly, we have not one Jewish, Greek, or Roman writer, even those who lived in the Middle East, much less anywhere else on the earth, who ever mention him during his supposed life time. This appears quite extraordinary, and you will find few Christian apologists who dare mention this embarrassing fact.

To illustrate this extraordinary absence of Jesus Christ literature, just imagine going through nineteenth century literature looking for an Abraham Lincoln but unable to find a single mention of him in any writing on earth until the 20th century. Yet straight-faced Christian apologists and historians want you to buy a factual Jesus out of a dearth void of evidence, and rely on nothing but hearsay written well after his purported life. Considering that most Christians believe that Jesus lived as God on earth, the Almighty gives an embarrassing example for explaining his existence. You'd think a Creator might at least have the ability to bark up some good solid evidence.

research, read, learn, stop buying into the misinformation put out by the delusional.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 4 users Like goodwithoutgod's post
04-01-2014, 12:48 PM
RE: Jesus myth
Did jesus walk on water? No, probably not. But I do think Jesus was an actual person.

“The only reason people do not know much is because they do not care to know. They are incurious. Incuriousity is the oddest and most foolish failing there is.” -Stephen Fry
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Fat Mac's post
04-01-2014, 12:53 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(04-01-2014 12:48 PM)Fat Mac Wrote:  Did jesus walk on water? No, probably not. But I do think Jesus was an actual person.

Oh I don't deny there may have been a man named jesus back then, maybe he was even a philosopher or just bat shit crazy, but clearly the events in the bible attributed to jesus never occurred.....at least there is no empirical evidence to show that.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like goodwithoutgod's post
04-01-2014, 01:48 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  No one has the slightest physical evidence to support a historical Jesus; no artifacts, dwelling, works of carpentry, or self-written manuscripts. All claims about Jesus derive from writings of other people.

This is true of virtually all historical figures that are widely assumed to have existed.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  There occurs no contemporary Roman record that shows Pontius Pilate executing a man named Jesus. Devastating to historians, there occurs not a single contemporary writing that mentions Jesus. All documents about Jesus came well after the life of the alleged Jesus from either: unknown authors, people who had never met an earthly Jesus, or from fraudulent, mythical or allegorical writings. Although one can argue that many of these writings come from fraud or interpolations, I will use the information and dates to show that even if these sources did not come from interpolations, they could still not serve as reliable evidence for a historical Jesus, simply because all sources about Jesus derive from hearsay accounts.

Hearsay means information derived from other people rather than on a witness' own knowledge.

Hearsay is also a legal category of evidence, not an historical one.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Courts of law do not generally allow hearsay as testimony, and nor does honest modern scholarship.

And this betrays you as someone who does not understand modern scholarship. Hearsay is a legal category for a specific reason that stems from the much heavier burden of proof resting on the prosecution. "Honest modern scholarship" uses hearsay frequently.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Hearsay does not provide good evidence, and therefore, we should dismiss it.

Simply untrue of historiography.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  If you do not understand this, imagine yourself confronted with a charge for a crime which you know you did not commit. You feel confident that no one can prove guilt because you know that there exists no evidence whatsoever for the charge against you. Now imagine that you stand present in a court of law that allows hearsay as evidence. When the prosecution presents its case, everyone who takes the stand against you claims that you committed the crime, not as a witness themselves, but solely because they claim other people said so. None of these other people, mind you, ever show up in court, nor can anyone find them.

This is a legal conceptualization of evidentiary weight. This has nothing to do with historiography.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Hearsay does not work as evidence because we have no way of knowing whether the person lied, or simply based his or her information on wrongful belief or bias.

Actually we do have methods to measure the probability of such things. That's one of the primary jobs of an historian.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  We know from history about witchcraft trials and kangaroo courts that hearsay provides neither reliable nor fair statements of evidence. We know that mythology can arise out of no good information whatsoever. We live in a world where many people believe in demons, UFOs, ghosts, or monsters, and an innumerable number of fantasies believed as fact taken from nothing but belief and hearsay. It derives from these reasons why hearsay cannot serves as good evidence, and the same reasoning must go against the claims of a historical Jesus or any other historical person.

For an amateur with no real background in academic standards or historiography, I can see how this might make sense. For actual historians, this is claptrap.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Authors of ancient history today, of course, can only write from indirect observation in a time far removed from their aim. But a valid historian's own writing gets cited with sources that trace to the subject themselves, or to eyewitnesses and artifacts. For example, a historian today who writes about the life of George Washington, of course, can not serve as an eyewitness, but he can provide citations to documents which give personal or eyewitness accounts. None of the historians about Jesus give reliable sources to eyewitnesses, therefore all we have remains as hearsay.

This would mean we would have to slice many figures out of our history textbooks.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  What appears most revealing of all, comes not from what people later wrote about Jesus but what people did not write about him.

An argument from silence combined with ignorance about the accident of preservation? Very nice.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Consider that not a single historian, philosopher, scribe or follower who lived before or during the alleged time of Jesus ever mentions him!

How many historians, philosophers, or scribes who lived in Syria-Palestine during the life of Jesus can you name? How many texts from that area and time period are you aware of?

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  If, indeed, the Gospels portray a historical look at the life of Jesus, then the one feature that stands out prominently within the stories shows that people claimed to know Jesus far and wide, not only by a great multitude of followers but by the great priests, the Roman governor Pilate, and Herod who claims that he had heard "of the fame of Jesus" (Matt 14:1)". One need only read Matt: 4:25 where it claims that "there followed him [Jesus] great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judea, and from beyond Jordan." The gospels mention, countless times, the great multitude that followed Jesus and crowds of people who congregated to hear him. So crowded had some of these gatherings grown, that Luke 12:1 alleges that an "innumerable multitude of people... trode one upon another." Luke 5:15 says that there grew "a fame abroad of him: and great multitudes came together to hear..." The persecution of Jesus in Jerusalem drew so much attention that all the chief priests and scribes, including the high priest Caiaphas, not only knew about him but helped in his alleged crucifixion. (see Matt 21:15-23, 26:3, Luke 19:47, 23:13). The multitude of people thought of Jesus, not only as a teacher and a miracle healer, but a prophet (see Matt:14:5).

So here we have the gospels portraying Jesus as famous far and wide, a prophet and healer, with great multitudes of people who knew about him, including the greatest Jewish high priests and the Roman authorities of the area, and not one person records his existence during his lifetime? If the poor, the rich, the rulers, the highest priests, and the scribes knew about Jesus, who would not have heard of him?

Then we have a particular astronomical event that would have attracted the attention of anyone interested in the "heavens." According to Luke 23:44-45, there occurred "about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour, and the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst." Yet not a single mention of such a three hour ecliptic event got recorded by anyone, including the astronomers and astrologers, anywhere in the world, including Pliny the Elder and Seneca who both recorded eclipses from other dates. Note also that, for obvious reasons, solar eclipses can't occur during a full moon (passovers always occur during full moons), Nor does a single contemporary person write about the earthquake described in Matthew 27:51-54 where the earth shook, rocks ripped apart (rent), and graves opened.

Matthew 2 describes Herod and all of Jerusalem as troubled by the worship of the infant Jesus. Herod then had all of the children of Bethlehem slain. If such extraordinary infanticides of this magnitude had occurred, why didn't anyone write about it?

Some apologists attempt to dig themselves out of this problem by claiming that there lived no capable historians during that period, or due to the lack of education of the people with a writing capacity, or even sillier, the scarcity of paper gave reason why no one recorded their "savior." But the area in and surrounding Jerusalem served, in fact, as the center of education and record keeping for the Jewish people. The Romans, of course, also kept many records. Moreover, the gospels mention scribes many times, not only as followers of Jesus but the scribes connected with the high priests. And as for historians, there lived plenty at the time who had the capacity and capability to record, not only insignificant gossip, but significant events, especially from a religious sect who drew so much popular attention through an allegedly famous and infamous Jesus.

Name three such historians from Syria-Palestine.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Take, for example, the works of Philo Judaeus whose birth occurred in 20 B.C.E. and died 50 C.E. He lived as the greatest Jewish-Hellenistic philosopher and historian of the time and lived in the area of Jerusalem during the alleged life of Jesus.

Philo lived in Alexandria, in Egypt. He traveled to Jerusalem once to visit the temple.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  He wrote detailed accounts of the Jewish events that occurred in the surrounding area.

In Egypt.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Yet not once, in all of his volumes of writings, do we read a single account of a Jesus "the Christ." Nor do we find any mention of Jesus in Seneca's (4? B.C.E. - 65 C.E.) writings, nor from the historian Pliny the Elder (23? - 79 C.E.).

Seneca lived in Rome and may have visited Egypt. Pliny the Elder didn't visit Palestine. Why would either of these men have written about a failed apocalyptic prophet, among several others, from a backwater of the Roman Empire?

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  If, indeed, such a well known Jesus existed, as the gospels allege, does any reader here think it reasonable that, at the very least, the fame of Jesus would not have reached the ears of one of these men?

I think you overestimate how famous the gospels portray him outside of his immediate communities, as well as the significance of the gospel portrayals of his fame to the historical Jesus question.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Amazingly, we have not one Jewish, Greek, or Roman writer, even those who lived in the Middle East, much less anywhere else on the earth, who ever mention him during his supposed life time. This appears quite extraordinary, and you will find few Christian apologists who dare mention this embarrassing fact.

To illustrate this extraordinary absence of Jesus Christ literature, just imagine going through nineteenth century literature looking for an Abraham Lincoln but unable to find a single mention of him in any writing on earth until the 20th century.

A fantastically stupid analogy.

(04-01-2014 12:41 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  Yet straight-faced Christian apologists and historians want you to buy a factual Jesus out of a dearth void of evidence, and rely on nothing but hearsay written well after his purported life. Considering that most Christians believe that Jesus lived as God on earth, the Almighty gives an embarrassing example for explaining his existence. You'd think a Creator might at least have the ability to bark up some good solid evidence.

research, read, learn, stop buying into the misinformation put out by the delusional.

I would suggest you do the same, but use actual books and articles instead of just highly rhetorical websites.

My Blog
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
04-01-2014, 02:01 PM (This post was last modified: 04-01-2014 02:07 PM by WillHopp.)
RE: Jesus myth
When apologists are confronted with the "Jesus didn't exist" argument they like to say, what proof do you have that Socrates existed? That's when I hit them with Hitchens' response that, it doesn't matter if a philosopher didn't exist because his ideas still hold true, and billions of "souls" won't burn for eternity for denying Socrates' existence. And when apologists are confronted with the "MMLJ didn't write the Gospels" argument, they like to ask, how do you know Homer wrote his works? My answer is almost identical as the Socrates example.

Check out my now-defunct atheism blog. It's just a blog, no ads, no revenue, no gods.
----
Atheism promotes critical thinking; theism promotes hypocritical thinking. -- Me
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
04-01-2014, 02:18 PM
RE: Jesus myth
If the wall of OP can be interpreted as, research yer own dang theology before preaching it to others, then I can agree. Big Grin

living word
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes houseofcantor's post
04-01-2014, 04:19 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(04-01-2014 02:01 PM)WillHopp Wrote:  When apologists are confronted with the "Jesus didn't exist" argument they like to say, what proof do you have that Socrates existed? That's when I hit them with Hitchens' response that, it doesn't matter if a philosopher didn't exist because his ideas still hold true, and billions of "souls" won't burn for eternity for denying Socrates' existence. And when apologists are confronted with the "MMLJ didn't write the Gospels" argument, they like to ask, how do you know Homer wrote his works? My answer is almost identical as the Socrates example.

In other words, you sidestep the main question entirely and just bark that their worldview is wrong. Brilliant.

My Blog
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
04-01-2014, 04:28 PM
RE: Jesus myth
Actually, if you read it again maklelan, you'll see THEY are sidestepping the argument.

Check out my now-defunct atheism blog. It's just a blog, no ads, no revenue, no gods.
----
Atheism promotes critical thinking; theism promotes hypocritical thinking. -- Me
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
04-01-2014, 04:29 PM
RE: Jesus myth
There must have been 100 men named Y'shua bar Yosef because the names Y'shua and Yosef were terribly common but there was no one named "Jesus Christ" much to the dismay of fundies everywhere.

Did any of them do miracles? I highly doubt it.

Atheism is NOT a Religion. It's A Personal Relationship With Reality!
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
04-01-2014, 04:40 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(04-01-2014 04:28 PM)WillHopp Wrote:  Actually, if you read it again maklelan, you'll see THEY are sidestepping the argument.

No, if the question is whether or not an historical Jesus existed, then the person responding with an argument about salvation through Jesus is sidestepping the argument entirely.

My Blog
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: