Reliability of the Gospels
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10-12-2012, 07:13 PM (This post was last modified: 10-12-2012 08:02 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 06:50 PM)Free Wrote:  The Qur'an was assembled as a single book 19 years after Muhammad died.

How do you know that ? Spencer says that's the claim, but another Saracen leader also claimed to have assembled it in the 690's and burned the variants.
Their original claim, that the assembly was done in 656 also has, as a part of the claim, that the variants were burned at that time. So if there were variants at either point, it calls into question the "absolute" literal transmission, no matter what the date was, and they DO actually say they "burned the variants". Why bother to say that at all, if there was absolute inerrancy ? What is it about Spencer's 690's assembly date that you think is wrong ?

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10-12-2012, 09:11 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 08:14 AM)Free Wrote:  
(09-12-2012 09:11 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  The occupation of "Hafiz" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hafiz was an established skill, in Islam, and maybe for epic Greek poetry.
There is no way of knowing that what they memorized was actually a "farewell speech" or something made up and presented as such by the followers of those named above.


This may be true, however using that reasoning we can not know for certainty that any kind of speech that was made in ancient times of which we have text can ever be demonstrated as being 100% accurate, or even 0% accurate.

But the one thing we do have as far as evidence is concerned is the text itself. The point I am making is that it is entirely possible- as has been demonstrated by Muhammad's followers- that the memorization of things that have been spoken by a highly revered person can in fact be memorized verbatim.

And since Muhammad was a religious figure somewhat like Jesus, the comparison I make and the reasoning supported by evidence makes a very good case for "oral tradition" being very credible and dependable.
Perhaps you're just stuck on this example of Islam. Take Greek mythology (or in fact anything today referred to as "mythology"). We have little doubt that the stories have been well-preserved and passed on "as is". But that doesn't make them true, even if there are people who claimed to have seen the events.

Remember also that the writers of the gospels had a bias... they wanted people to believe that Jesus not only existed but was the Son of God, and so they had reason to lie, embellish, and hide important facts. A bias doesn't necessarily make their stories lies, embellishments, or slanted, but it does give us good reason to doubt them -- especially 2000 years after the fact when we can't interview them for ourselves. A skeptic would view these stories in the same way that he or she views mythology; the events don't parallel things that we know happen in our lives, so it's unlikely that they were true simply because they were in the past.

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10-12-2012, 09:46 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 07:13 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(10-12-2012 06:50 PM)Free Wrote:  The Qur'an was assembled as a single book 19 years after Muhammad died.

How do you know that ? Spencer says that's the claim, but another Saracen leader also claimed to have assembled it in the 690's and burned the variants.
Their original claim, that the assembly was done in 656 also has, as a part of the claim, that the variants were burned at that time. So if there were variants at either point, it calls into question the "absolute" literal transmission, no matter what the date was, and they DO actually say they "burned the variants". Why bother to say that at all, if there was absolute inerrancy ? What is it about Spencer's 690's assembly date that you think is wrong ?


The best way to learn this and take it to a reasonable conclusion as quickly as possible is to Google "History of the Koran." However, for me personally, after spending close to a decade working with Ali Sina at http://www.faithfreedom.org debunking Islam, I have read more aHadith than I could possibly remember. We tried to debunk the origin of the Koran just as you are trying to do here, but we really couldn't give a great argument against it, considering the actual evidence.

If you can do better, I'd more than welcome it for I would use it as a weapon against Islam.

But you will find that very hard to do because of the authentic aHadith that verify with multiple attestations how the Qur'an was preserved.

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10-12-2012, 09:51 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 09:46 PM)Free Wrote:  But you will find that very hard to do because of the authentic aHadith that verify with multiple attestations how the Qur'an was preserved.

Verifying one questionable document with other dubious documents? Not very convincing.

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10-12-2012, 09:55 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
I'm not trying to do anything. I"ll have to get Spencer's book and see what his reasons are. But both times they admitted they burned the variants.

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10-12-2012, 09:55 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
Quote:Perhaps you're just stuck on this example of Islam. Take Greek mythology (or in fact anything today referred to as "mythology"). We have little doubt that the stories have been well-preserved and passed on "as is". But that doesn't make them true, even if there are people who claimed to have seen the events.

Remember also that the writers of the gospels had a bias... they wanted people to believe that Jesus not only existed but was the Son of God, and so they had reason to lie, embellish, and hide important facts. A bias doesn't necessarily make their stories lies, embellishments, or slanted, but it does give us good reason to doubt them -- especially 2000 years after the fact when we can't interview them for ourselves. A skeptic would view these stories in the same way that he or she views mythology; the events don't parallel things that we know happen in our lives, so it's unlikely that they were true simply because they were in the past.

I agree with most of what you have said, however, what the argument here is about is whether or not there is any actual historical value in the gospel regarding Jesus of Nazareth.

Some people say none at all, others say maybe there's something there. I am of the school that perhaps there's something there, and the gospels themselves are an embellishment of an earlier text that had the sayings of Jesus without the narrative. This hypothetical text is known as "The Q Source."

As mentioned earlier, the Gospel of Thomas may be a good example of a Q source.

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10-12-2012, 10:00 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 09:51 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(10-12-2012 09:46 PM)Free Wrote:  But you will find that very hard to do because of the authentic aHadith that verify with multiple attestations how the Qur'an was preserved.

Verifying one questionable document with other dubious documents? Not very convincing.
Using your reasoning, would history exist? You need to draw a line between honest skepticism and going over the edge.

When you have multiple attestations in the 2 main aHadith collections it's very difficult to create a reasonable argument.

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10-12-2012, 10:05 PM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 10:00 PM)Free Wrote:  
(10-12-2012 09:51 PM)Chas Wrote:  Verifying one questionable document with other dubious documents? Not very convincing.
Using your reasoning, would history exist? You need to draw a line between honest skepticism and going over the edge.

When you have multiple attestations in the 2 main aHadith collections it's very difficult to create a reasonable argument.


You feel I am too skeptical; I feel you are not skeptical enough.

Yes, history exists, but we are also talking about people attesting to bullshit stories, so ...

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11-12-2012, 02:07 AM
Reliability of the Gospels
(10-12-2012 06:50 PM)Free Wrote:  
(10-12-2012 06:32 PM)Chas Wrote:  The Koran wasn't collected until many decades after Mohammed and from multiple sources and adjudicated as to what was real and what was not.

And your going to tell me you have confidence that it accurate?

Seriously?
The Qur'an was assembled as a single book 19 years after Muhammad died. It's chapters and verses had been spread around Arabia and further, but since many of Muhammad's earliest followers had memorized it, they convened a committee in 651 AD to reaffirm the verses and compile into a book that is precisely the same Qur'an we have today.

It's a matter of Islamic history, which is also confirmed in both the Sunnah and aHadith.

So yes, I have confidence in it's integrity.

If a fan of Harry Potter, handed down the stories with perfect fidelity to a series of Other Harry Potter fans, it would not be proof positive that wizards existed, only that a story can be repeated as told.

Again I feel a need to emphasize that supernatural claims are not and never will be substantiated by the repeating of a story, no matter how well it's retold
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11-12-2012, 09:24 AM
RE: Reliability of the Gospels
Quote:If a fan of Harry Potter, handed down the stories with perfect fidelity to a series of Other Harry Potter fans, it would not be proof positive that wizards existed, only that a story can be repeated as told.


In pure logic and reasoning, we would need to categorize this assertion among the fallacies known as False Analogy.

Quote:In an analogy, two objects (or events), A and B are shown to be similar. Then it is argued that since A has property P, so also B must have property P. An analogy fails when the two objects, A and B, are different in a way which affects whether they both have property P.

http://onegoodmove.org/fallacy/falsean.htm

Since we know conclusively that Harry Potter is fictional (P), but cannot determine conclusively that the existence of Jesus is fictional (P), the analogy is false.

Quote:Again I feel a need to emphasize that supernatural claims are not and never will be substantiated by the repeating of a story, no matter how well it's retold

Again, there is more to this than the mere supernatural claims. As they say, "do not throw the baby out with the bathwater."

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