[split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
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22-08-2014, 11:58 AM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 06:54 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 05:56 AM)JimFit Wrote:  You are talking to an Orthodox Christian. The story of Noah and the boat is a parable, in the story the righteous people built their salvation (the boat) by being righteous and survived death (the water). This story has an impact to Humanity as a whole, everyone saw Noah to bult a boat but instead of helping him they mocked him and continued their orgies, gluttony, egoistical life. These people that were drown in the story couldn't offer anything to progress of Humanity. Even a scientist must obey to some of the Christian morals to be a good Scientist, he must be humble, meek and to sacrifise lots of his personal life into research, the sacrifise of the ego moves to progress.

So if god decrees it, it is good. Congratulations, you are on the same moral plane as a terrorist.

If I were to talk to the devil and ask what his plans for the human race were, perhaps he would say a couple of things:

1. I want them all to worship me
2. I'll destroy anyone who doesn't, up to and including the entire planet.

How do you determine the difference between god and Satan?

Do you think that a parable doesn't teach because it didn't happen? A parable is based on reality because it is anthropocentric.
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22-08-2014, 11:59 AM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 07:14 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 05:42 AM)JimFit Wrote:  I don't know any serious Historian that denies Jesus Christ Historicy.
I suggest you read this.

http://www.strangenotions.com/an-atheist...rt-1-of-2/

and watch these

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnybQxIgfPw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUQMJR2BP1w

I know academic Historians are wrong and you are right! And you think you are the light...

and I suggest you take some classes. I have a degree in religious studies, specializing in the Christian myth. Vast majority of religious and biblical scholars freely admit the bible is largely a parable. In fact if you remove all of the pseudepigrapha, interpolations, parables and allegorical writings you wouldn't have enough for a pamphlet. For example, I assume your faith is based on the belief in Christ right? How do you know of Christ? Surely you don't slap on the blind fold of blind faith and just take it for granted. If you do some research, what you will find is, every person who wrote of Christ based it on hearsay, no one, let me say it again slower, NO ONE who writes of Christ knew him. I can break it down for you if you like.


Writings of the Gospels: Mark (60 to 75 CE), Matthew (80 to 90 CE), Luke (80 to 90 CE based on the Gospels of Mark), and John (80 to 110 CE) . I have shown before in various venues the issues with the Gospels, the fact that we don’t know who wrote the gospels, the community effort that put them together, and the fact that they don’t agree with one another, all of which make them a suspect source of empirical evidence. When one posits a super natural, extraordinary story, one requires extraordinary evidence....sadly it doesn't exist, except philosophically.

The Gospel of Matthew is generally believed to have been composed between 70 and 110, with most scholars preferring the period 80–90; a pre-70 date remains a minority view, but has been strongly supported. The anonymous author was probably a highly educated Jew, intimately familiar with the technical aspects of Jewish law, and the disciple Matthew was probably honored within his circle. The author drew on three main sources to compose his gospel: the Gospel of Mark; the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source; and material unique to his own community, called "Special Matthew", or the M source. Note the part where I said...disciple matthew honored...and anonymous writer...

The gospel of Mark; Most modern scholars reject the tradition which ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist, the companion of Peter, and regard it as the work of an unknown author working with various sources including collections of miracle stories, controversy stories, parables, and a passion narrative.

Luke: Tradition holds that the text was written by Luke the companion of Paul (named in Colossians 4:14). Many modern scholars reject this view, although the list of scholars maintaining authorship by Luke the physician is lengthy, and represents scholars from a wide range of theological opinion. According to Raymond E. Brown, opinion concerning Lukan authorship was ‘about evenly divided’ as of 1997.

John: The gospel identifies its author as "the disciple whom Jesus loved." Although the text does not name this disciple, by the beginning of the 2nd century, a tradition had begun to form which identified him with John the Apostle, one of the Twelve (Jesus' innermost circle). Although some notable New Testament scholars affirm traditional Johannine scholarship, the majority do not believe that John or one of the Apostles wrote it, and trace it instead to a "Johannine community" which traced its traditions to John.

1) paul - written about 60 C.E., of the 13, he actually wrote 8. Not a single instance in any of Paul's writings claims that he ever meets or sees an earthly Jesus, nor does Paul give any reference to Jesus' life on earth (except for a few well known interpolations). Therefore, all accounts about a Jesus could only have come from other believers or his imagination. Hearsay.

2) Galatians - complete third hand heresay.

3) James - Epistle of James mentions Jesus only once as an introduction to his belief. Nowhere does the epistle reference a historical Jesus and this alone eliminates it from an historical account.

4) Peter - Many scholars question the authorship of Peter of the epistles. Even within the first epistle, it says in 5:12 that Silvanus wrote it. Most scholars consider the second epistle as unreliable or an outright forgery. The unknown authors of the epistles of Peter wrote long after the life of the traditional Peter. Moreover, Peter lived (if he ever lived at all) as an ignorant and illiterate peasant (even Acts 4:13 attests to this). In short, no one has any way of determining whether the epistles of Peter come from fraud, an author claiming himself to know what Peter said (hearsay), or from someone trying to further the aims of the Church. Encyclopedias usually describe a tradition that Saint Peter wrote them. However, whenever you see the word "tradition" it refers to a belief passed down within a society. In other words: hearsay. This the definition of Pseudepigrapha; a book written in a biblical style and ascribed to an author who did not write it...otherwise known as a FORGERY.

5) Jude - Even early Christians argued about its authenticity. It quotes an apocryphal book called Enoch as if it represented authorized Scripture. Biblical scholars do not think it possible for the alleged disciple Jude to have written it because whoever wrote it had to have written it during a period when the churches had long existed. Like the other alleged disciples, Jude would have lived as an illiterate peasant and unable to write (much less in Greek) but the author of Jude wrote in fluent high quality Greek..more forgery.


Then there are the non-christian sources as follows;

1) Josephus Flavius, the Jewish historian, lived as the earliest non-Christian who mentions a Jesus. Although many scholars think that Josephus' short accounts of Jesus (in Antiquities) came from interpolations perpetrated by a later Church father (most likely, Eusebius), Josephus' birth in 37 C.E. (well after the alleged crucifixion of Jesus), puts him out of range of an eyewitness account. Moreover, he wrote Antiquities in 93 C.E., after the first gospels got written. Therefore, even if his accounts about Jesus came from his hand, his information could only serve as hearsay.

2) Pliny the Younger (born: 62 C.E.) His letter about the Christians only shows that he got his information from Christian believers themselves. Regardless, his birth date puts him out of range as an eyewitness account.

3) Tacitus, the Roman historian's birth year at 64 C.E., puts him well after the alleged life of Jesus. He gives a brief mention of a "Christus" in his Annals (Book XV, Sec. 44), which he wrote around 109 C.E. He gives no source for his material. Although many have disputed the authenticity of Tacitus' mention of Jesus, the very fact that his birth happened after the alleged Jesus and wrote the Annals during the formation of Christianity, shows that his writing can only provide us with hearsay accounts.

4) Suetonius, a Roman historian, born in 69 C.E., mentions a "Chrestus," a common name. Apologists assume that "Chrestus" means "Christ" (a disputable claim). But even if Seutonius had meant "Christ," it still says nothing about an earthly Jesus. Just like all the others, Suetonius' birth occurred well after the purported Jesus. Again, only hearsay.

5) Talmud: Amazingly some Christians use brief portions of the Talmud, (a collection of Jewish civil a religious law, including commentaries on the Torah), as evidence for Jesus. They claim that Yeshu in the Talmud refers to Jesus. However, this Yeshu, according to scholars depicts a disciple of Jehoshua Ben-Perachia at least a century before the alleged Christian Jesus or it may refer to Yeshu ben Pandera, a teacher of the 2nd centuy CE. Regardless of how one interprets this, the Palestinian Talmud didn't come into existence until the 3rd and 5th century C.E., and the Babylonian Talmud between the 3rd and 6th century C.E., at least two centuries after the alleged crucifixion. At best it can only serve as a controversial Christian or Jewish legend; it cannot possibly serve as evidence for a historical Jesus.

6) Thallus/africanus, In the ninth century a Byzantine writer named George Syncellus quoted a third-century Christian historian named Sextus Julius Africanus, who quoted an unknown writer named Thallus on the darkness at the crucifixion: 'Thallus in the third book of his history calls this darkness an eclipse of the sun, but in my opinion he is wrong.' All of the works of Africanus are lost, so there is no way to confirm the quote or to examine its context. We have no idea who Thallus was, or when he wrote. Third century would have put him being born long after jesus's alleged death, thus hearsay.

7) Phlegon of Tralles was a Greek writer and freedman of the emperor Hadrian, who lived in the 2nd century AD. case closed, more hearsay, born after the alleged jesus's death.

Even the scholars know this. I have taken many, many, many Christian theology courses and the texts and professors will quickly agree that it is largely a parable, put together from allegorical writings meant to send a message. It is the "message we should focus on" and not who actually wrote it. "Belief in a transcendental reality requires the ability to believe in something beyond what we see". Rolleyes Any questions so far? Smartass


Please find me a scholar that denies Jesus Historicy..just one.
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22-08-2014, 11:59 AM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 07:17 AM)Mathilda Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 05:44 AM)JimFit Wrote:  No arguments? How does a Materialist sepperates living from non living?

All life has a metabolism.

Does rocks have metabolism?
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22-08-2014, 12:03 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 11:54 AM)JimFit Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 06:10 AM)morondog Wrote:  Is the orthodox Christian talking to us? Or at us?

... Only some of the morals then? Which ones are not essential?

OK, how about God and all his murderous stuff in the old testament - he explictly commands people to kill. Doesn't seem very loving? Consider

No he doesn't, Jesus was clear whoever tried to justified evil actions to God he is not following God but his Ego. Jesus came to restore our relationship with God because the people in the Old Testament lost their way to salvation.

and you know this how? This is why the whole hearsay debacle puts all of those warm and fuzzy statements into the fairy tale category.

"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)
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22-08-2014, 12:09 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 11:59 AM)JimFit Wrote:  Please find me a scholar that denies Jesus Historicy..just one.

Richard Carrier

http://www.richardcarrier.info/

That was easy. I'm sure there are others, but Carrier came immediately to mind.
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22-08-2014, 12:11 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 11:59 AM)JimFit Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 07:14 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  and I suggest you take some classes. I have a degree in religious studies, specializing in the Christian myth. Vast majority of religious and biblical scholars freely admit the bible is largely a parable. In fact if you remove all of the pseudepigrapha, interpolations, parables and allegorical writings you wouldn't have enough for a pamphlet. For example, I assume your faith is based on the belief in Christ right? How do you know of Christ? Surely you don't slap on the blind fold of blind faith and just take it for granted. If you do some research, what you will find is, every person who wrote of Christ based it on hearsay, no one, let me say it again slower, NO ONE who writes of Christ knew him. I can break it down for you if you like.


Writings of the Gospels: Mark (60 to 75 CE), Matthew (80 to 90 CE), Luke (80 to 90 CE based on the Gospels of Mark), and John (80 to 110 CE) . I have shown before in various venues the issues with the Gospels, the fact that we don’t know who wrote the gospels, the community effort that put them together, and the fact that they don’t agree with one another, all of which make them a suspect source of empirical evidence. When one posits a super natural, extraordinary story, one requires extraordinary evidence....sadly it doesn't exist, except philosophically.

The Gospel of Matthew is generally believed to have been composed between 70 and 110, with most scholars preferring the period 80–90; a pre-70 date remains a minority view, but has been strongly supported. The anonymous author was probably a highly educated Jew, intimately familiar with the technical aspects of Jewish law, and the disciple Matthew was probably honored within his circle. The author drew on three main sources to compose his gospel: the Gospel of Mark; the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source; and material unique to his own community, called "Special Matthew", or the M source. Note the part where I said...disciple matthew honored...and anonymous writer...

The gospel of Mark; Most modern scholars reject the tradition which ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist, the companion of Peter, and regard it as the work of an unknown author working with various sources including collections of miracle stories, controversy stories, parables, and a passion narrative.

Luke: Tradition holds that the text was written by Luke the companion of Paul (named in Colossians 4:14). Many modern scholars reject this view, although the list of scholars maintaining authorship by Luke the physician is lengthy, and represents scholars from a wide range of theological opinion. According to Raymond E. Brown, opinion concerning Lukan authorship was ‘about evenly divided’ as of 1997.

John: The gospel identifies its author as "the disciple whom Jesus loved." Although the text does not name this disciple, by the beginning of the 2nd century, a tradition had begun to form which identified him with John the Apostle, one of the Twelve (Jesus' innermost circle). Although some notable New Testament scholars affirm traditional Johannine scholarship, the majority do not believe that John or one of the Apostles wrote it, and trace it instead to a "Johannine community" which traced its traditions to John.

1) paul - written about 60 C.E., of the 13, he actually wrote 8. Not a single instance in any of Paul's writings claims that he ever meets or sees an earthly Jesus, nor does Paul give any reference to Jesus' life on earth (except for a few well known interpolations). Therefore, all accounts about a Jesus could only have come from other believers or his imagination. Hearsay.

2) Galatians - complete third hand heresay.

3) James - Epistle of James mentions Jesus only once as an introduction to his belief. Nowhere does the epistle reference a historical Jesus and this alone eliminates it from an historical account.

4) Peter - Many scholars question the authorship of Peter of the epistles. Even within the first epistle, it says in 5:12 that Silvanus wrote it. Most scholars consider the second epistle as unreliable or an outright forgery. The unknown authors of the epistles of Peter wrote long after the life of the traditional Peter. Moreover, Peter lived (if he ever lived at all) as an ignorant and illiterate peasant (even Acts 4:13 attests to this). In short, no one has any way of determining whether the epistles of Peter come from fraud, an author claiming himself to know what Peter said (hearsay), or from someone trying to further the aims of the Church. Encyclopedias usually describe a tradition that Saint Peter wrote them. However, whenever you see the word "tradition" it refers to a belief passed down within a society. In other words: hearsay. This the definition of Pseudepigrapha; a book written in a biblical style and ascribed to an author who did not write it...otherwise known as a FORGERY.

5) Jude - Even early Christians argued about its authenticity. It quotes an apocryphal book called Enoch as if it represented authorized Scripture. Biblical scholars do not think it possible for the alleged disciple Jude to have written it because whoever wrote it had to have written it during a period when the churches had long existed. Like the other alleged disciples, Jude would have lived as an illiterate peasant and unable to write (much less in Greek) but the author of Jude wrote in fluent high quality Greek..more forgery.


Then there are the non-christian sources as follows;

1) Josephus Flavius, the Jewish historian, lived as the earliest non-Christian who mentions a Jesus. Although many scholars think that Josephus' short accounts of Jesus (in Antiquities) came from interpolations perpetrated by a later Church father (most likely, Eusebius), Josephus' birth in 37 C.E. (well after the alleged crucifixion of Jesus), puts him out of range of an eyewitness account. Moreover, he wrote Antiquities in 93 C.E., after the first gospels got written. Therefore, even if his accounts about Jesus came from his hand, his information could only serve as hearsay.

2) Pliny the Younger (born: 62 C.E.) His letter about the Christians only shows that he got his information from Christian believers themselves. Regardless, his birth date puts him out of range as an eyewitness account.

3) Tacitus, the Roman historian's birth year at 64 C.E., puts him well after the alleged life of Jesus. He gives a brief mention of a "Christus" in his Annals (Book XV, Sec. 44), which he wrote around 109 C.E. He gives no source for his material. Although many have disputed the authenticity of Tacitus' mention of Jesus, the very fact that his birth happened after the alleged Jesus and wrote the Annals during the formation of Christianity, shows that his writing can only provide us with hearsay accounts.

4) Suetonius, a Roman historian, born in 69 C.E., mentions a "Chrestus," a common name. Apologists assume that "Chrestus" means "Christ" (a disputable claim). But even if Seutonius had meant "Christ," it still says nothing about an earthly Jesus. Just like all the others, Suetonius' birth occurred well after the purported Jesus. Again, only hearsay.

5) Talmud: Amazingly some Christians use brief portions of the Talmud, (a collection of Jewish civil a religious law, including commentaries on the Torah), as evidence for Jesus. They claim that Yeshu in the Talmud refers to Jesus. However, this Yeshu, according to scholars depicts a disciple of Jehoshua Ben-Perachia at least a century before the alleged Christian Jesus or it may refer to Yeshu ben Pandera, a teacher of the 2nd centuy CE. Regardless of how one interprets this, the Palestinian Talmud didn't come into existence until the 3rd and 5th century C.E., and the Babylonian Talmud between the 3rd and 6th century C.E., at least two centuries after the alleged crucifixion. At best it can only serve as a controversial Christian or Jewish legend; it cannot possibly serve as evidence for a historical Jesus.

6) Thallus/africanus, In the ninth century a Byzantine writer named George Syncellus quoted a third-century Christian historian named Sextus Julius Africanus, who quoted an unknown writer named Thallus on the darkness at the crucifixion: 'Thallus in the third book of his history calls this darkness an eclipse of the sun, but in my opinion he is wrong.' All of the works of Africanus are lost, so there is no way to confirm the quote or to examine its context. We have no idea who Thallus was, or when he wrote. Third century would have put him being born long after jesus's alleged death, thus hearsay.

7) Phlegon of Tralles was a Greek writer and freedman of the emperor Hadrian, who lived in the 2nd century AD. case closed, more hearsay, born after the alleged jesus's death.

Even the scholars know this. I have taken many, many, many Christian theology courses and the texts and professors will quickly agree that it is largely a parable, put together from allegorical writings meant to send a message. It is the "message we should focus on" and not who actually wrote it. "Belief in a transcendental reality requires the ability to believe in something beyond what we see". Rolleyes Any questions so far? Smartass


Please find me a scholar that denies Jesus Historicy..just one.

be specific. Do they claim that jesus was real and "died for our sins", of course, that is the very foundation of the "faith" (belief in something without evidence). Do they admit the gospels mentioning of jesus wasn't penned by the actual people for which they are named? yes. In every class I attended I put the instructor through a vice on this, and they would freely admit it was a lot of community writings by groups of clerics years after his death. I can break it down to minute detail for you, but it is a huge amount of energy and information typing. Search is your friend, or go down to the coliseum mini forum and click the boxing ring thread, look for the third one down where I provided this information in great detail. I get tired of educating theists time and time again on the same points....no one who wrote of jesus knew him. Now, go back and read my posts to you earlier, do some research. I don't use google much honestly, that is why I have references at the bottom of my papers. Would you like to learn how your favorite church even came to be? I am on the way to the gym, here, a paper I wrote about it, fully cited.. read, learn, evolve...

Eric #######
Professor V##### S#######
Christian Spirituality Vision REL 123
March 19 2014

The development of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity

For a church to be considered a New Testament church it shall accept the biblical New Testament as its sole authority for all matters of faith. A “true” biblical church shall not accept any authority for its faith and daily practice, outside of the New Testament Scriptures. This does not discard the importance of the Old Testament Scriptures by any means. The church is not based on the biblical Old Testament because that is the record of God’s dealing with Israel. In the New Testament you will find a specific pattern and instructions from God concerning the church. The followers of the New Testament church model believe in the irrefutable word of God, that the Bible is complete as written, and it is, “… Given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

New Testament church parishioners believe that any hierarchy outside of the local church, is unsupported by Scripture. They think that Christ is the head, and that the New Testament Scriptures are the “true” churches only sole authority. I always find it amusing that with all the religions in the world, multiple versions of God or gods, and various holy books and ideologies of creation, that the believer of each religion thinks the believers of other religions are wrong, and that their own belief is the truth, the will and the way of the one “true” God. Even within Christianity, if every Christian who ever called another Christian, not a “true” Christian was removed from earth, there would be no Christians.

The Congregational style of a New Testament church is basically a biblical form of church government. Final authority in a New Testament church rests with the delegation. Each member has an equal democratic vote. They believe that the Bible, specifically the New Testament teaches that churches are to be governed by their own congregation following strict biblical guidelines.

In Trinitarian theology, the father gives everything he has, his very being, as a free gift to his son. Since the Son has everything that the father has, then they are in fact equal (Albl 139). In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit is closely associated with God’s gift of prophecy. For example, “the Lord took some of the spirit from Moses and gave it to the elders, and they were able to prophesy also (Num 11:25). In the New Testament, the Holy Spirit is closely associated with the creation of God’s son in human form. For example, Mary conceived Jesus not through ordinary human means, but “through the Holy Spirit” (Matt1:20). In essence, just as Jesus comes in the father’s name, so the Holy Spirit comes in Jesus’ name (Albl 150). I define the Holy Spirit as God’s breath, his very soul, that of which he can giveth away to create life itself.

The church understands such self-emptying on the part of God as simultaneously the fulfillment of human existence, whose transformative effects are extended in the church in the world through the work of the Holy Spirit (Mueller 44). As such, parishioners of the New Testament church believe that they can follow this example by sharing the Holy Spirit with others. This is “living through Christ” by spreading the good word, in line with strict interpretation of biblical reference.
In the New Testament, outside of the story of Christ in his teachings, is the insistent belief through Scripture that the end times or transition into the new world in the second coming of Christ to take his place as king of the world would occur at any moment. “That Christ would come soon is an expectation which appears even in the latter writings of the New Testament. It is present in almost every stratum” (Moule 141). A rationalist may posit that today things are going on exactly as they were before, and thus there will never be an end to the world. Believers in the New Testament think that the real mistake here is to make time the determining standard at all. A good analogy of this is that the Christian hope is not measured in terms of time, but in terms of the journey continuing to its completion; the incarnation. The question should not be when is the end of the world, but what can I do to be ready for it? (Moule 148).

Now let’s go back in time to the very formation, fabrication of the Christian faith, the Trinity concept and successful establishment of the Christian religion. We must begin with the immeasurable impact that Emperor Constantine had on the spread of Christianity, and successful suppression of incumbent Roman pagan beliefs. Legend has it that Emperor Constantine saw two stars cross in the sky, in which he took to be a sign from God that Christianity was the only true faith. While his conversion to Christianity in 312 was not truly the moment Christianity came to be the official religion of the Roman Empire, it definitely was one of the major contributing factors for its subsequent acceptance.

Emperor Constantine conducted a religious-based crusade against Licinius in a war to rescue Christians on the east from further persecution. In the years 312 to 313 Emperor Constantine began a systematic policy in which he gave honors, privileges and financial donations to the Christian church and their clergy. In 324, as the unchallenged controller of the East, he prohibited by Royal decree any cultic activities which until then fell under the traditional religions of the Roman Empire, and this is when the status of Christianity as the official religion of the state and its rulers was affirmed (Lieu 7).

Religious scholars concede that Emperor Constantine not only convened important council’s sessions, but also either presided over them, or appointed a Royal official to preside in his place. This reduced the very role of bishops and councils such as Nicaea and Tyre to utter insignificance by assimilating them to members of the Imperial consilium, whose advice was not binding on the Emperor. All decisions taken at the Nicene Council were made by Emperor Constantine alone, since he could completely disregard the advisory opinions of the bishops whom he had summoned to the Council (Lieu 8).

Some scholars contend that Emperor Constantine’s influence was minimal, and merely sat in on the councils out of personal interest. However, when we look at the Council of Nicaea of 359, we see that Emperor Constantine again took a prominent role of control in the theological debate. Once the foundation of Christianity as a predominant religion of the Empire had been successfully established, Emperor Constantine later relinquished some of his control and influence by putting a seal of approval on the rulings of bishops declared at councils. The governors of provinces were not even allowed to rescind what they had decided, for he said the priests of God were more trustworthy than any magistrate (Lieu 10).

We can trace back the very beginning of the entitlement mentality by church hierarchy to Emperor Constantine and his enabling policies. No matter what his crime, a bishop could only be deposed and exiled, not legally tortured and executed (Lieu 17). I am sure this was fundamental in developing the culture within the church of dealing with any indiscretions internally, and not invoking the authority of the legal system. This of course has led to much abuse throughout history. One has only to watch the news these days to see on a routine basis, some priest or other has been exposed for having performed a plethora of transgressions, hidden by the church by simply moving the clergy member to a new area. This mentality just exposes more people to being victimized.

On the basis of Christian faith and the Trinity concept; the father, the son and the Holy Spirit, the first Council of Nicaea in 325 called together by Emperor Constantine, worked to establish a settlement of the issue of the relationship between father and the son. The focus primarily was on defining Jesus Christ as a deity. Establishment of the Holy Spirit was largely unaddressed until after the father and son relationship was settled in 362. After Nicaea, some bishops continued to prefer a term which had been discussed and rejected by the Council: homoiousios, in the sense of the son ‘being of like substance’ with the father. There were other bishops who were antagonistic to the term homoiousios because it was not biblical (O’Collins 184). Seven years later, the Trinitarian terminology was officially adopted after first Council Constantinople.

In its letter to Pope Damascus, a post conciliar synod confessed ‘one divinity, power, or substance’ in ‘three most perfect hypostasesin’ (O’Collins 185). At the Trinitarian level, Constantinople I reaffirmed the Nicene Council confession of faith that the son was ’of one substance’ with the father, as well as teaching the divinity of the Holy Spirit (O’Collins 186). Thus, the official establishment of Christian doctrine regarding the Trinity of the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit was initiated.

Works Cited:

Mueller, J.J., Theological Foundations: Concepts and Methods for Understanding the Christian Faith. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2011. Print.

Albl, Martin C. Reason, Faith, and Tradition: Explorations in Catholic Theology. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2009. Print.

The Catholic Study Bible: The New American Bible 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University press, Inc., 2011. Print.

Moule, C. F. D., The birth of the New Testament. New York: Harper & Row, 1962. Print

Lieu, Samuel N. C., and Montserrat, Dominic, Constantine: History, Historiography, and Legend. London: Routledge, 2002. Print.

O'Collins, Gerald, Christology: A Biblical, Historical, and Systematic Study of Jesus. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. Print.



Enjoy

"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)
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22-08-2014, 12:17 PM (This post was last modified: 22-08-2014 12:56 PM by goodwithoutgod.)
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
And a parting gift, because I am in a good mood today and enjoy teaching people their own faith....

Eric #######
Professor V###### S#######
Christian Spirituality Vision REL 123
April 12 2014

The relationship between incarnation and atonement

To contemplate the relationship between incarnation and atonement, with special emphasis on Anselm’s idea of satisfaction, we must first look at what incarnation and atonement means to those of the Christian faith. Incarnation is continual in that our redemption depends on the reality that the eternal son of God came to us as a man. If he did not come fully down, then we are not fully saved (Dawson 5-6). Since Jesus became what we are, accepting our very humanity and God crossed the gap between human and deity, and he overcame our sin and came to live on our behalf. He chose to leave a faithful life that was beyond our capacity, but required by the Father.

The very obedience of Jesus led him to die on the cross as penalty for human sin. Not only did he die for us, but he gave us new life for salvation, and salvation depends on our continuing union with him. The Incarnation is basically a fundamental theological teaching of Christianity, based on its understanding of the New Testament. The Incarnation represents the Christian belief that Jesus, who is the second part of the triune, God, took on a human body and became both man and deity. This can be seen in the Bible in John 1:14: "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us” (Bible – King James version – John). The Christians worldview is rooted in the incarnation of Jesus Christ, the belief that Jesus is God in human in one person (Mueller 141).

Atonement is a theological theory which describes human being’s reconciliation with God. This atonement is basically the forgiveness of sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus. This voluntary sacrifice by Jesus made possible the reconciliation between man and God. “God so loved the world, and gave his only begotten son” (Bible – King James version – John 3:16). This Scripture verse highlights the source of atonement by the very provision of God’s love. It is the love of God the father that Paul has in view when he speaks of him who “spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all” (Bible – King James version – Romans 8:32). Surely God could have saved man by other means then allowing his only son to die, since God is all-powerful, other ways of forgiving sin were available to him. Some view the very necessity of his great self-sacrifice magnified his glory and enhanced the precise character of the salvation bestowed (Murray 12). Salvation requires not only the forgiveness of sin but also justification. Sin is the contradiction of God he must react against it with holy wrath demonstration of Christ on the cross is the ultimate demonstration of the love of God. The very nature of the atonement requires that it contains obedience, sacrifice, propitiation, reconciliation and redemption.

Obedience is a compilation of motive, purpose, direction and intention, of which Christ was the epitome of obedience discharge of God’s will in its increasing demands leading up to his inevitable sacrificial death. Sacrifice is the removal of sin liability via the transference of liability itself. Propitiation; to pacify, and Christ’s propitiation to God was to deal with the wrath so that those loved would no longer be the objects of wrath, and God’s love would be eternal. Reconciliation is concerned with our alienation from God, and the inherent need to have that alienation removed. Redemption by Jesus’ blood, “Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Bible – King James version – revelations 5:9).

This atonement can be broken down into various theories, one of which is the satisfaction theory of atonement, developed by Anselm of Canterbury (1033 – 1109). Anselm posited that sin unbalanced the order of justice in the universe. Once a sin has been performed, something good must be done in order to restore the balance. For example, a sin is incurrence of debt to God, the source of order, and that debt must be paid through true repentance (Albl 271). The work of Christ is to repair the breach human sin introduced into the relationship between humanity and God. Anselm argued in Cur Deus Homo that this work can be accomplished only by a God-man; one person equally divine and human. This doctrine of Christ is commonly called “Chalcedonian Christology” because it was created by the Council of Chalcedon in 451 CE (Visser 213).

One cannot explain the incarnation by appeal to any supposed obligation on God’s part to respect the devil’s rights over humanity. Since the devil had no such rights, so it appears that God would not have been acting unjustly if he had just delivered human beings the power of the devil by fiat. What reason did God have to redeemed mankind and the way he did, given that he was not under any obligation to do so? Anselm suggests that since we know God’s will is never irrational, we can be confident that God had some reason for doing what he did, even if we do not see or understand what the reason is (Visser 214).

Anselm believed he could prove, by unavoidable logical steps, that Christ was removed from the case, as if there had never existed anything to do with him, is it possible that without him mankind could have been saved (Anselm 261 – 262). A foundation of Christianity is that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins (Bible – King James version –1 Cor 15:3). In this way he fulfilled the old covenant sacrificial system, reconciled us to God, and changed our lives forever. This is the doctrine of the atonement (Mattison 1). At this point the author makes a faith claim, or commonly known as a knowledge claim, by positing “its reality is not in dispute”. I must interject here the whole subject is in dispute, and has been the center of debate for centuries. The author’s mere assertion in a knowledge claim that the atonement “reality” is not in dispute does not make it true. It does however assert that the atonement theory is an essential foundation of Christian religious belief. The author goes on to say, “we know that the atonement works; but how it works is not as clear.” Again, a knowledge claim is made; we have zero proof that the atonement works, at best it is a comforting theory for the faithful to cling to in order to validate their faith to themselves.

“The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Bible –King James version – Matthew 20:28). The statement suggests that Jesus gave his life as an extreme expression of love for mankind. Iranaeus of Lyons argued that Jesus was paid as the ransom to the devil free people’s souls. This view was known as the ransom or classic theory. The ransom theory was the dominant theological theory for centuries until dismantled by Anselm of Canterbury. He pointed out that this theory empowered the devil too much, and he posited that Jesus’s life was ransom paid to God, not the devil. Anselm viewed sin as dishonorable conduct that went against God. Since God cannot ignore this conduct, a debt or “satisfaction” is required. Since mankind is unable to make the requisite level of satisfaction, God became human to do it on our behalf. Thus, Jesus was payment to God, not the devil. But since Jesus was part of the triune god, did god merely appease himself?

The church leaders developed doctrine to reflect Jesus Christ’s fulfilling of God’s will through active obedience, vice his passive obedience through death. Basically, God requires mankind to obey and live a life of perpetual obedience (Mattison 1). This endless cycle of perpetual intellectual and spiritual slavery upon birth, where we continuously strive to bow and scrape in deference to our alleged creator’s self-centered will and ego, is hardly what a thinking person would presume a deity of such universe and life creating power, would be so obsessed with. What kind of immature supreme being would create all of this, create life, destroy life, send part of his own “body” down in the form of a man through immaculate conception, so he can die on our behalf to satisfy God’s ego requirement for sacrifice. I don’t purport to understand the consciousness of this alleged magical creature, but it is hard to conceive such childish, disingenuous manipulation of life for the entertainment of itself. This dramatic, over thought, contrite, anthropocentric theory must be the creation of man’s imagination. How could it be anything else?

In summary, this complex, dramatic Christian theological concept is obviously a fabrication of much thought, and introspective philosophy. Perhaps they could have put all that time and effort into something more constructive. Creating a subservient, subjugative crutch for people with low mental resilience, apparent inability to use reason and logic to comprehend the world around them, and wild imaginations seems unnecessary. In my opinion, religion and faith block the believer’s ability to utilize appropriate epistemological methods to process and gain knowledge. As apparent by the fact that a recent study showed that one fourth of America believed the sun revolved around the earth. This is the perfect example of how religious thought handicaps a person’s ability to learn.




Works Cited:

Mattison, Mark. “The Meaning of the Atonement.” Mark Mattison. 1987. Web. Retrieved from http://www.auburn.edu/~allenkc/openhse/atonement.html

Anselm, Evans, G. R., The Major Works. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc, 1998. Print.

Visser, Sandra and Williams, Thomas, Anselm. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc, 2009. Print.

Murray, John, The Atonement. Evansville: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1976. Print.

Mueller, J.J., Theological Foundations: Concepts and Methods for Understanding the Christian Faith. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2011. Print.

Albl, Martin C. Reason, Faith, and Tradition: Explorations in Catholic Theology. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2009. Print.

The Catholic Study Bible: The New American Bible 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University press, Inc., 2011. Print.

Dawson, Gerrit S. Jesus Ascended: The Meaning of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation. New Jersey: P&R publishing, 2004. Print.


NOTE* notice how all the references are christian theology books and not atheist? Yup, I know your faith inside and out, and you thought you were going to waltz in here and teach us heathens a thing or two about christ Big Grin

"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)
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22-08-2014, 12:21 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 12:09 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 11:59 AM)JimFit Wrote:  Please find me a scholar that denies Jesus Historicy..just one.

Richard Carrier

http://www.richardcarrier.info/

That was easy. I'm sure there are others, but Carrier came immediately to mind.

it isn't jimfit's fault, he took it as the gospel truth when reverand timmy told him all of those lies. The VAST majority of the creationists I have come across have never read the bible, never analyzed the bible, never researched their faith, and never questioned the teachings they received....definition of blind faith.

"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)
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22-08-2014, 12:24 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 07:14 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 05:42 AM)JimFit Wrote:  I don't know any serious Historian that denies Jesus Christ Historicy.
I suggest you read this.

http://www.strangenotions.com/an-atheist...rt-1-of-2/

and watch these

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnybQxIgfPw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUQMJR2BP1w

I know academic Historians are wrong and you are right! And you think you are the light...

and I suggest you take some classes. I have a degree in religious studies, specializing in the Christian myth. Vast majority of religious and biblical scholars freely admit the bible is largely a parable. In fact if you remove all of the pseudepigrapha, interpolations, parables and allegorical writings you wouldn't have enough for a pamphlet. For example, I assume your faith is based on the belief in Christ right? How do you know of Christ? Surely you don't slap on the blind fold of blind faith and just take it for granted. If you do some research, what you will find is, every person who wrote of Christ based it on hearsay, no one, let me say it again slower, NO ONE who writes of Christ knew him. I can break it down for you if you like.


Writings of the Gospels: Mark (60 to 75 CE), Matthew (80 to 90 CE), Luke (80 to 90 CE based on the Gospels of Mark), and John (80 to 110 CE) . I have shown before in various venues the issues with the Gospels, the fact that we don’t know who wrote the gospels, the community effort that put them together, and the fact that they don’t agree with one another, all of which make them a suspect source of empirical evidence. When one posits a super natural, extraordinary story, one requires extraordinary evidence....sadly it doesn't exist, except philosophically.

The Gospel of Matthew is generally believed to have been composed between 70 and 110, with most scholars preferring the period 80–90; a pre-70 date remains a minority view, but has been strongly supported. The anonymous author was probably a highly educated Jew, intimately familiar with the technical aspects of Jewish law, and the disciple Matthew was probably honored within his circle. The author drew on three main sources to compose his gospel: the Gospel of Mark; the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source; and material unique to his own community, called "Special Matthew", or the M source. Note the part where I said...disciple matthew honored...and anonymous writer...

The gospel of Mark; Most modern scholars reject the tradition which ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist, the companion of Peter, and regard it as the work of an unknown author working with various sources including collections of miracle stories, controversy stories, parables, and a passion narrative.

Luke: Tradition holds that the text was written by Luke the companion of Paul (named in Colossians 4:14). Many modern scholars reject this view, although the list of scholars maintaining authorship by Luke the physician is lengthy, and represents scholars from a wide range of theological opinion. According to Raymond E. Brown, opinion concerning Lukan authorship was ‘about evenly divided’ as of 1997.

John: The gospel identifies its author as "the disciple whom Jesus loved." Although the text does not name this disciple, by the beginning of the 2nd century, a tradition had begun to form which identified him with John the Apostle, one of the Twelve (Jesus' innermost circle). Although some notable New Testament scholars affirm traditional Johannine scholarship, the majority do not believe that John or one of the Apostles wrote it, and trace it instead to a "Johannine community" which traced its traditions to John.

1) paul - written about 60 C.E., of the 13, he actually wrote 8. Not a single instance in any of Paul's writings claims that he ever meets or sees an earthly Jesus, nor does Paul give any reference to Jesus' life on earth (except for a few well known interpolations). Therefore, all accounts about a Jesus could only have come from other believers or his imagination. Hearsay.

2) Galatians - complete third hand heresay.

3) James - Epistle of James mentions Jesus only once as an introduction to his belief. Nowhere does the epistle reference a historical Jesus and this alone eliminates it from an historical account.

4) Peter - Many scholars question the authorship of Peter of the epistles. Even within the first epistle, it says in 5:12 that Silvanus wrote it. Most scholars consider the second epistle as unreliable or an outright forgery. The unknown authors of the epistles of Peter wrote long after the life of the traditional Peter. Moreover, Peter lived (if he ever lived at all) as an ignorant and illiterate peasant (even Acts 4:13 attests to this). In short, no one has any way of determining whether the epistles of Peter come from fraud, an author claiming himself to know what Peter said (hearsay), or from someone trying to further the aims of the Church. Encyclopedias usually describe a tradition that Saint Peter wrote them. However, whenever you see the word "tradition" it refers to a belief passed down within a society. In other words: hearsay. This the definition of Pseudepigrapha; a book written in a biblical style and ascribed to an author who did not write it...otherwise known as a FORGERY.

5) Jude - Even early Christians argued about its authenticity. It quotes an apocryphal book called Enoch as if it represented authorized Scripture. Biblical scholars do not think it possible for the alleged disciple Jude to have written it because whoever wrote it had to have written it during a period when the churches had long existed. Like the other alleged disciples, Jude would have lived as an illiterate peasant and unable to write (much less in Greek) but the author of Jude wrote in fluent high quality Greek..more forgery.


Then there are the non-christian sources as follows;

1) Josephus Flavius, the Jewish historian, lived as the earliest non-Christian who mentions a Jesus. Although many scholars think that Josephus' short accounts of Jesus (in Antiquities) came from interpolations perpetrated by a later Church father (most likely, Eusebius), Josephus' birth in 37 C.E. (well after the alleged crucifixion of Jesus), puts him out of range of an eyewitness account. Moreover, he wrote Antiquities in 93 C.E., after the first gospels got written. Therefore, even if his accounts about Jesus came from his hand, his information could only serve as hearsay.

2) Pliny the Younger (born: 62 C.E.) His letter about the Christians only shows that he got his information from Christian believers themselves. Regardless, his birth date puts him out of range as an eyewitness account.

3) Tacitus, the Roman historian's birth year at 64 C.E., puts him well after the alleged life of Jesus. He gives a brief mention of a "Christus" in his Annals (Book XV, Sec. 44), which he wrote around 109 C.E. He gives no source for his material. Although many have disputed the authenticity of Tacitus' mention of Jesus, the very fact that his birth happened after the alleged Jesus and wrote the Annals during the formation of Christianity, shows that his writing can only provide us with hearsay accounts.

4) Suetonius, a Roman historian, born in 69 C.E., mentions a "Chrestus," a common name. Apologists assume that "Chrestus" means "Christ" (a disputable claim). But even if Seutonius had meant "Christ," it still says nothing about an earthly Jesus. Just like all the others, Suetonius' birth occurred well after the purported Jesus. Again, only hearsay.

5) Talmud: Amazingly some Christians use brief portions of the Talmud, (a collection of Jewish civil a religious law, including commentaries on the Torah), as evidence for Jesus. They claim that Yeshu in the Talmud refers to Jesus. However, this Yeshu, according to scholars depicts a disciple of Jehoshua Ben-Perachia at least a century before the alleged Christian Jesus or it may refer to Yeshu ben Pandera, a teacher of the 2nd centuy CE. Regardless of how one interprets this, the Palestinian Talmud didn't come into existence until the 3rd and 5th century C.E., and the Babylonian Talmud between the 3rd and 6th century C.E., at least two centuries after the alleged crucifixion. At best it can only serve as a controversial Christian or Jewish legend; it cannot possibly serve as evidence for a historical Jesus.

6) Thallus/africanus, In the ninth century a Byzantine writer named George Syncellus quoted a third-century Christian historian named Sextus Julius Africanus, who quoted an unknown writer named Thallus on the darkness at the crucifixion: 'Thallus in the third book of his history calls this darkness an eclipse of the sun, but in my opinion he is wrong.' All of the works of Africanus are lost, so there is no way to confirm the quote or to examine its context. We have no idea who Thallus was, or when he wrote. Third century would have put him being born long after jesus's alleged death, thus hearsay.

7) Phlegon of Tralles was a Greek writer and freedman of the emperor Hadrian, who lived in the 2nd century AD. case closed, more hearsay, born after the alleged jesus's death.

Even the scholars know this. I have taken many, many, many Christian theology courses and the texts and professors will quickly agree that it is largely a parable, put together from allegorical writings meant to send a message. It is the "message we should focus on" and not who actually wrote it. "Belief in a transcendental reality requires the ability to believe in something beyond what we see". Rolleyes Any questions so far? Smartass

What is neat is you do not need to take classes to get this information. There are lots of books out there with this information in them. Religious scholars (not bible study leaders) will confirm all this stuff.
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22-08-2014, 12:32 PM
RE: [split] From Fundamental Evangelicalism to Orthodox Christianity to Atheism
(22-08-2014 12:24 PM)wazzel Wrote:  
(22-08-2014 07:14 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  and I suggest you take some classes. I have a degree in religious studies, specializing in the Christian myth. Vast majority of religious and biblical scholars freely admit the bible is largely a parable. In fact if you remove all of the pseudepigrapha, interpolations, parables and allegorical writings you wouldn't have enough for a pamphlet. For example, I assume your faith is based on the belief in Christ right? How do you know of Christ? Surely you don't slap on the blind fold of blind faith and just take it for granted. If you do some research, what you will find is, every person who wrote of Christ based it on hearsay, no one, let me say it again slower, NO ONE who writes of Christ knew him. I can break it down for you if you like.


Writings of the Gospels: Mark (60 to 75 CE), Matthew (80 to 90 CE), Luke (80 to 90 CE based on the Gospels of Mark), and John (80 to 110 CE) . I have shown before in various venues the issues with the Gospels, the fact that we don’t know who wrote the gospels, the community effort that put them together, and the fact that they don’t agree with one another, all of which make them a suspect source of empirical evidence. When one posits a super natural, extraordinary story, one requires extraordinary evidence....sadly it doesn't exist, except philosophically.

The Gospel of Matthew is generally believed to have been composed between 70 and 110, with most scholars preferring the period 80–90; a pre-70 date remains a minority view, but has been strongly supported. The anonymous author was probably a highly educated Jew, intimately familiar with the technical aspects of Jewish law, and the disciple Matthew was probably honored within his circle. The author drew on three main sources to compose his gospel: the Gospel of Mark; the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source; and material unique to his own community, called "Special Matthew", or the M source. Note the part where I said...disciple matthew honored...and anonymous writer...

The gospel of Mark; Most modern scholars reject the tradition which ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist, the companion of Peter, and regard it as the work of an unknown author working with various sources including collections of miracle stories, controversy stories, parables, and a passion narrative.

Luke: Tradition holds that the text was written by Luke the companion of Paul (named in Colossians 4:14). Many modern scholars reject this view, although the list of scholars maintaining authorship by Luke the physician is lengthy, and represents scholars from a wide range of theological opinion. According to Raymond E. Brown, opinion concerning Lukan authorship was ‘about evenly divided’ as of 1997.

John: The gospel identifies its author as "the disciple whom Jesus loved." Although the text does not name this disciple, by the beginning of the 2nd century, a tradition had begun to form which identified him with John the Apostle, one of the Twelve (Jesus' innermost circle). Although some notable New Testament scholars affirm traditional Johannine scholarship, the majority do not believe that John or one of the Apostles wrote it, and trace it instead to a "Johannine community" which traced its traditions to John.

1) paul - written about 60 C.E., of the 13, he actually wrote 8. Not a single instance in any of Paul's writings claims that he ever meets or sees an earthly Jesus, nor does Paul give any reference to Jesus' life on earth (except for a few well known interpolations). Therefore, all accounts about a Jesus could only have come from other believers or his imagination. Hearsay.

2) Galatians - complete third hand heresay.

3) James - Epistle of James mentions Jesus only once as an introduction to his belief. Nowhere does the epistle reference a historical Jesus and this alone eliminates it from an historical account.

4) Peter - Many scholars question the authorship of Peter of the epistles. Even within the first epistle, it says in 5:12 that Silvanus wrote it. Most scholars consider the second epistle as unreliable or an outright forgery. The unknown authors of the epistles of Peter wrote long after the life of the traditional Peter. Moreover, Peter lived (if he ever lived at all) as an ignorant and illiterate peasant (even Acts 4:13 attests to this). In short, no one has any way of determining whether the epistles of Peter come from fraud, an author claiming himself to know what Peter said (hearsay), or from someone trying to further the aims of the Church. Encyclopedias usually describe a tradition that Saint Peter wrote them. However, whenever you see the word "tradition" it refers to a belief passed down within a society. In other words: hearsay. This the definition of Pseudepigrapha; a book written in a biblical style and ascribed to an author who did not write it...otherwise known as a FORGERY.

5) Jude - Even early Christians argued about its authenticity. It quotes an apocryphal book called Enoch as if it represented authorized Scripture. Biblical scholars do not think it possible for the alleged disciple Jude to have written it because whoever wrote it had to have written it during a period when the churches had long existed. Like the other alleged disciples, Jude would have lived as an illiterate peasant and unable to write (much less in Greek) but the author of Jude wrote in fluent high quality Greek..more forgery.


Then there are the non-christian sources as follows;

1) Josephus Flavius, the Jewish historian, lived as the earliest non-Christian who mentions a Jesus. Although many scholars think that Josephus' short accounts of Jesus (in Antiquities) came from interpolations perpetrated by a later Church father (most likely, Eusebius), Josephus' birth in 37 C.E. (well after the alleged crucifixion of Jesus), puts him out of range of an eyewitness account. Moreover, he wrote Antiquities in 93 C.E., after the first gospels got written. Therefore, even if his accounts about Jesus came from his hand, his information could only serve as hearsay.

2) Pliny the Younger (born: 62 C.E.) His letter about the Christians only shows that he got his information from Christian believers themselves. Regardless, his birth date puts him out of range as an eyewitness account.

3) Tacitus, the Roman historian's birth year at 64 C.E., puts him well after the alleged life of Jesus. He gives a brief mention of a "Christus" in his Annals (Book XV, Sec. 44), which he wrote around 109 C.E. He gives no source for his material. Although many have disputed the authenticity of Tacitus' mention of Jesus, the very fact that his birth happened after the alleged Jesus and wrote the Annals during the formation of Christianity, shows that his writing can only provide us with hearsay accounts.

4) Suetonius, a Roman historian, born in 69 C.E., mentions a "Chrestus," a common name. Apologists assume that "Chrestus" means "Christ" (a disputable claim). But even if Seutonius had meant "Christ," it still says nothing about an earthly Jesus. Just like all the others, Suetonius' birth occurred well after the purported Jesus. Again, only hearsay.

5) Talmud: Amazingly some Christians use brief portions of the Talmud, (a collection of Jewish civil a religious law, including commentaries on the Torah), as evidence for Jesus. They claim that Yeshu in the Talmud refers to Jesus. However, this Yeshu, according to scholars depicts a disciple of Jehoshua Ben-Perachia at least a century before the alleged Christian Jesus or it may refer to Yeshu ben Pandera, a teacher of the 2nd centuy CE. Regardless of how one interprets this, the Palestinian Talmud didn't come into existence until the 3rd and 5th century C.E., and the Babylonian Talmud between the 3rd and 6th century C.E., at least two centuries after the alleged crucifixion. At best it can only serve as a controversial Christian or Jewish legend; it cannot possibly serve as evidence for a historical Jesus.

6) Thallus/africanus, In the ninth century a Byzantine writer named George Syncellus quoted a third-century Christian historian named Sextus Julius Africanus, who quoted an unknown writer named Thallus on the darkness at the crucifixion: 'Thallus in the third book of his history calls this darkness an eclipse of the sun, but in my opinion he is wrong.' All of the works of Africanus are lost, so there is no way to confirm the quote or to examine its context. We have no idea who Thallus was, or when he wrote. Third century would have put him being born long after jesus's alleged death, thus hearsay.

7) Phlegon of Tralles was a Greek writer and freedman of the emperor Hadrian, who lived in the 2nd century AD. case closed, more hearsay, born after the alleged jesus's death.

Even the scholars know this. I have taken many, many, many Christian theology courses and the texts and professors will quickly agree that it is largely a parable, put together from allegorical writings meant to send a message. It is the "message we should focus on" and not who actually wrote it. "Belief in a transcendental reality requires the ability to believe in something beyond what we see". Rolleyes Any questions so far? Smartass

What is neat is you do not need to take classes to get this information. There are lots of books out there with this information in them. Religious scholars (not bible study leaders) will confirm all this stuff.

Yes

I love when I take theology classes watching the reactions of my fellow students who usually are all christians, as they read the text books and find out all the BS they say in church is false...no Paul never said that, no we don't know who wrote jude, no paul never met jesus, etc etc..it gives me great joy to drop the truth hammer on their heads. The professors always backpeddle away from me and talk about "the message", the "intent", the "beauty of a transcendental philosophy"...but did any of that really happen? very little.

"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)
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