Jesus myth
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18-01-2014, 01:18 AM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 12:26 AM)Chippy Wrote:  
(17-01-2014 11:59 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  It never occurred to me that a person writing in Greek (Josephus) would think the Greek words for son and stone are similar. Chippy's imagining things.

You wrote:

Amazingly, Josephus even (accidentally?) writes “son” instead of “stone!”[1]

Given the structure of the sentence which carries υἱὸς it is incapable of carrying the word πέτρα so it can't be a one-word error. The entire sentence would have to be in error and that is highly implausible.

ok, I believe you.

Still, it is odd that Josephus wrote "THE SON COMETH" when it's a missile coming. Wouldn't you agree?

BTW, do you have to be abusive? It really is unpleasant. No one likes it, and it adds nothing to the argument.
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18-01-2014, 01:26 AM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 12:04 AM)WillHopp Wrote:  
(17-01-2014 11:59 PM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  It never occurred to me that a person writing in Greek (Josephus) would think the Greek words for son and stone are similar. Chippy's imagining things.

I wasn't referring to Josephus at all. Atwill's interpretations were from English translations, yes?

I can't find anywhere that he can speak Greek, so I suspect you're right.
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18-01-2014, 01:46 AM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 12:15 AM)WillHopp Wrote:  His Caesar's Messiah was self-published. Doesn't that send up a red flag for you, Mark? Why do you think that is?

Atwill's theory is bloody interesting. It deserves consideration. One doesn't have to 100% accept or totally reject what he says. It's not Atwill that we should be discussing, but his ideas. I'm interested in the "big picture" which for me is the idea that Christianity was created as anti Jewish propaganda.

Atwill's book was originally published by Ulysses press (2006) He writes it was the year's best seller on religious history in the US.

I think he has (self) republished the latest version.

I don't think that in 2014 there is any stigma associated with self publishing. I've written a book, and I haven't sent it to a single publisher, as I see no need to. (control your reply, chipster LOL).

It's true there are some dreadful self published books, and a publisher does give a book some credibility, yet there's no reason a self published book cannot be excellent.
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18-01-2014, 02:00 AM (This post was last modified: 18-01-2014 02:16 AM by Chippy.)
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 01:18 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Still, it is odd that Josephus wrote "THE SON COMETH" when it's a missile coming. Wouldn't you agree?

Yes and it puzzled Whiston when he was translating. In the notes he writes:

What should be the meaning of this signal or watchword, when the watchmen saw a stone coming from the engine, "The Stone Cometh," or what mistake there is in the reading, I cannot tell. The MSS., both Greek and Latin, all agree in this reading; and I cannot approve of any groundless conjectural alteration of the text from ro to lop, that not the son or a stone, but that the arrow or dart cometh; as hath been made by Dr. Hudson, and not corrected by Havercamp. Had Josephus written even his first edition of these books of the war in pure Hebrew, or had the Jews then used the pure Hebrew at Jerusalem, the Hebrew word for a son is so like that for a stone, ben and eben, that such a correction might have been more easily admitted. But Josephus wrote his former edition for the use of the Jews beyond Euphrates, and so in the Chaldee language, as he did this second edition in the Greek language; and bar was the Chaldee word for son, instead of the Hebrew ben, and was used not only in Chaldea, etc. but in Judea also, as the New Testament informs us. Dio lets us know that the very Romans at Rome pronounced the name of Simon the son of Giora, Bar Poras for Bar Gioras, as we learn from Xiphiline, p. 217. Reland takes notice, "that many will here look for a mystery, as though the meaning were, that the Son of God came now to take vengeance on the sins of the Jewish nation;" which is indeed the truth of the fact, but hardly what the Jews could now mean; unless possibly by way of derision of Christ's threatening so often made, that he would come at the head of the Roman army for their destruction. But even this interpretation has but a very small degree of probability. If I were to make an emendation by mere conjecture, I would read instead of, though the likeness be not so great as in lo; because that is the word used by Josephus just before, as has been already noted on this very occasion, while, an arrow or dart, is only a poetical word, and never used by Josephus elsewhere, and is indeed no way suitable to the occasion, this engine not throwing arrows or darts, but great stones, at this time.[1]

From Whiston's notes it appears that the handwriting is unclear and what is coming has been understood as "the son", "the stone", "the dart" and "the arrow". Whiston settles for "the stone" and translates the exclamation "THE STONE COMETH". In the context of the passage that does make sense but it doesn't account for the grammatical problems that it introduces. And the Tufts University transcription that I excerpted--which is comparatively recent--renders the Greek as "The Son is Coming"[2][3]. I haven't seen pictures of the actual manuscript so I can't comment on what Whiston writes.

Quote:BTW, do you have to be abusive? It really is unpleasant. No one likes it, and it adds nothing to the argument.

Don't be a dick and I won't be abusive.
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18-01-2014, 09:40 AM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 01:46 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Atwill's theory is bloody interesting. It deserves consideration. One doesn't have to 100% accept or totally reject what he says. It's not Atwill that we should be discussing, but his ideas. I'm interested in the "big picture" which for me is the idea that Christianity was created as anti Jewish propaganda.

How can you say that? Either Christianity was invented as anti-Jewish propaganda or it wasn't. I don't see middle ground there. You can't 85% believe his theory.

Do I think it's a cool idea and wish it were true? Absolutely. But far too many actual scholars and facts aren't on his side for this one to be worth my defense.

As for the self-publishing stigma, I'll respectfully disagree, but since he did have a publisher before that's cool.

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18-01-2014, 10:20 AM (This post was last modified: 18-01-2014 02:06 PM by Free.)
RE: Jesus myth
From Josephus' preface of the Jewish Wars:

Quote:I have proposed to myself, for the sake of such as live under the government of the Romans, to translate those books into the Greek tongue, which I formerly composed in the language of our country.

So obviously Jospehus' original text was in Hebrew, since Hebrew was indeed the official language of his country in the 1st century.

Then we see this from Whiston:

Quote:Had Josephus written even his first edition of these books of the war in pure Hebrew, or had the Jews then used the pure Hebrew at Jerusalem, the Hebrew word for a son is so like that for a stone, ben and eben, that such a correction might have been more easily admitted. But Josephus wrote his former edition for the use of the Jews beyond Euphrates, and so in the Chaldee language ...

Also, from Josephus' The Jewish Wars, Book VI, Chapter 2 we see the following:

Quote:Upon this Josephus stood in such a place where he might be heard, not by John only, but by many more, and then declared to them what Caesar had given him in charge, and this in the Hebrew language.

Josephus' native tongue was Hebrew. Undoubtedly, he also could write it.

So what am I thinking?

I am thinking Whiston erred in assuming that Josephus originally wrote in the Chaldee language since Josephus states clearly that he translated those books from the language of his country, which clearly was not Chaldee/Aramaic. Aramaic was the language most often spoken in the monochrome of the 1st century Jerusalem only because it was more "universal" as a language of most of the Jewish cultures. However, Hebrew was the preferred language among the Jewish elite, which included Josephus and many other high ranking Jewish officials.

Now, since the Testimonium Flavium clearly indicates at least partial Christian interpolation, I think it might be possible that an early Christian who was somewhat proficient in Hebrew got a hold of the Hebrew text and translated it into the Koine Greek, and therefore we see "The Son is Coming," either intentionally, or as a misinterpretation of the Hebrew words ben and eben.

"The Son Is Coming" makes absolutely no sense in the context.

Just a thought based upon my reasoning. I could be wrong? Hobo

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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18-01-2014, 04:19 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 09:40 AM)WillHopp Wrote:  
(18-01-2014 01:46 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Atwill's theory is bloody interesting. It deserves consideration. One doesn't have to 100% accept or totally reject what he says. It's not Atwill that we should be discussing, but his ideas. I'm interested in the "big picture" which for me is the idea that Christianity was created as anti Jewish propaganda.

How can you say that? Either Christianity was invented as anti-Jewish propaganda or it wasn't. I don't see middle ground there. You can't 85% believe his theory.

Do I think it's a cool idea and wish it were true? Absolutely. But far too many actual scholars and facts aren't on his side for this one to be worth my defense.

As for the self-publishing stigma, I'll respectfully disagree, but since he did have a publisher before that's cool.

Re
"How can you say that? Either Christianity was invented as anti-Jewish propaganda or it wasn't. I don't see middle ground there. You can't 85% believe his theory."

I didn't explain what I meant, so you're right to pull me up there. I'll explain myself now.

The Gospels were interpolated and edited over at least 200 year period after they were first written. For example the resurrection appearance of Jesus was only added in Marks Gospel probably in the third century. We also know that Constantine's government in the fourth century edited the Gospels to make them suitable for general consumption. Eseubius is notorious as a dishonest historian. There were no printing presses, so gospels were copied by hand and additions made. Celsus points this out. My point is that the product that we now have as the Gospels was not entirely a result of anti-Jewish propaganda as Atwill suggests.

Also, some off at Atwill's evidence in my opinion is quite contrived, for example I don't find his explanation of the four stories of post resurrection appearances of Jesus to be read in conjunction with each other to make a sensible whole, convincing.

Also, it's possible that the theory is incorrect in that Jesus was never meant to be Titus. It could be that Josephus was just used by gospel authors to create an anti Jewish story. I think Carrier might think this.
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18-01-2014, 04:41 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 09:40 AM)WillHopp Wrote:  
(18-01-2014 01:46 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Atwill's theory is bloody interesting. It deserves consideration. One doesn't have to 100% accept or totally reject what he says. It's not Atwill that we should be discussing, but his ideas. I'm interested in the "big picture" which for me is the idea that Christianity was created as anti Jewish propaganda.

How can you say that? Either Christianity was invented as anti-Jewish propaganda or it wasn't. I don't see middle ground there. You can't 85% believe his theory.

Do I think it's a cool idea and wish it were true? Absolutely. But far too many actual scholars and facts aren't on his side for this one to be worth my defense.

As for the self-publishing stigma, I'll respectfully disagree, but since he did have a publisher before that's cool.

"Do I think it's a cool idea and wish it were true? Absolutely. But far too many actual scholars and facts aren't on his side for this one to be worth my defines."

You've got a good point here. I am not a biblical scholar and I can't speak Greek or Hebrew. so one has to do take into consideration the opinions of experts in their fields.

Allow me to talk around this a little. Atwill claims he has read hundreds of books on Jesus. He also claims to have spent 10 years studying the Gospels and Josephus and the dead sea scrolls (although, obviously only the English translations) so while he may not be a textural or linguistic expert he undoubtedly has a solid understanding of the contemporary history. This, I think, is his strength... he has a solid appreciation of the antagonism and frustration that the Romans felt towards a race of backward, superstitious, trouble causing Jews. He also, in my opinion, understands how clever the Romans were at using propaganda, a fact that is also pointed out by historians who know nothing of Atwill.

There is another factor to consider. Atwill presents a highly original theory of the whole story of the origins of Christianity. It to some degree undermines the work of a whole lot of other people. For example, if you spent five years writing about whether Jesus existed or not and then along comes Atwill who totally undermines your theories, you're bound to get your shackles up. It means you're wrong. It means your book's popularity might be undermined by his. It means all your you Tube videos become outdated. So, inevitably there's professional jealousy involved here, and already established experts find it very hard to be objective, as his theory challenges their credibility.
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18-01-2014, 04:45 PM
RE: Jesus myth
(18-01-2014 10:20 AM)Free Wrote:  From Josephus' preface of the Jewish Wars:

Quote:I have proposed to myself, for the sake of such as live under the government of the Romans, to translate those books into the Greek tongue, which I formerly composed in the language of our country.

So obviously Jospehus' original text was in Hebrew, since Hebrew was indeed the official language of his country in the 1st century.

Then we see this from Whiston:

Quote:Had Josephus written even his first edition of these books of the war in pure Hebrew, or had the Jews then used the pure Hebrew at Jerusalem, the Hebrew word for a son is so like that for a stone, ben and eben, that such a correction might have been more easily admitted. But Josephus wrote his former edition for the use of the Jews beyond Euphrates, and so in the Chaldee language ...

Also, from Josephus' The Jewish Wars, Book VI, Chapter 2 we see the following:

Quote:Upon this Josephus stood in such a place where he might be heard, not by John only, but by many more, and then declared to them what Caesar had given him in charge, and this in the Hebrew language.

Josephus' native tongue was Hebrew. Undoubtedly, he also could write it.

So what am I thinking?

I am thinking Whiston erred in assuming that Josephus originally wrote in the Chaldee language since Josephus states clearly that he translated those books from the language of his country, which clearly was not Chaldee/Aramaic. Aramaic was the language most often spoken in the monochrome of the 1st century Jerusalem only because it was more "universal" as a language of most of the Jewish cultures. However, Hebrew was the preferred language among the Jewish elite, which included Josephus and many other high ranking Jewish officials.

Now, since the Testimonium Flavium clearly indicates at least partial Christian interpolation, I think it might be possible that an early Christian who was somewhat proficient in Hebrew got a hold of the Hebrew text and translated it into the Koine Greek, and therefore we see "The Son is Coming," either intentionally, or as a misinterpretation of the Hebrew words ben and eben.

"The Son Is Coming" makes absolutely no sense in the context.

Just a thought based upon my reasoning. I could be wrong? Hobo

Thanks for pointing this out
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18-01-2014, 04:59 PM
RE: Jesus myth
Mark, have you thought about (ever) the line "Render unto Caesar ... " in the synoptics makes no sense. Pompey conquered the Hasmonean Kingdom in about 63 BCE. Supposedly this statement would be uttered by someone within 100 years of that. Seems to me that would just not be something, someone would say within 100 years of a bitter conquest about a foreign ruler. Seems it reflects an attitude of a later time. If the theory that Christianity was created to imbue compliance, seems that's EXACTLY what that Rome would have "placed" in his mouth.

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