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Featured Is this potential evidence for the resurrection of Christ?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by Jos, Jan 2, 2020.

  1. night912

    night912 Well-Known Member

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    Well, if we don't try and learn, then we would not know that it's faulty interpretation would we?

    If we don't try to learn, we can never learn how to try to not learn.
     
  2. blü 2

    blü 2 Well-Known Member
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    I don't see it like that.

    Forgive me if I've mentioned any of this already. I begin by assuming three things ─ assume, because in each case I can't demonstrate its correctness without first assuming it's correct. First, that a world exists external to the self (objective reality); second, that our senses are capable of informing us about that world; and third, that reason is a valid tool. Anyone who posts on the net, including RF of course, thereby affirms that they agree with the first two; and no one seems to disagree out loud with the third, though there are occasional grounds for suspicion.

    On that basis I think we have a place to stand when we wish to understand reality. The Enlightenment is getting under way around the time of Newton, and scientific method is emerging as a set of expressed principles and practices through the 19th century (though Popper is often mentioned as having formalized those notions in the mid 20th century). We discover major discrepancies between the bible and geology in the late 18th century, the dawn of the materialist sun (coinciding with German textual criticism of the bible), and in the 19th we add chemistry, electricity (say Faraday to Maxwell), theories of heat energy and entropy, evolution (whose seeds predate Darwin), radioactivity, Michelson-Morley and the dawn of atomic theory, and so on.

    And now we can put rovers on Mars, watch brains in action in real time, understand and therapeutically use psychoactive drugs, make astonishing materials (new battery technologies are a current example), and so on.

    In other words, success vastly outstrips failure; we can achieve better and better understandings, and thus obtain better and better benefits for ourselves. While there are always things about humans that invite pessimism, a whole lot more good stuff is out there.
    Is there unanimity among historiographers? I'd be surprised, but the basics (as outlined on the link) are pretty much in place by now. (Archaeology in Israel, which involves players from everywhere, seems to remain a more fruitful source than most for arguments about proper and improper methods and claims and much else.)
     
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  3. Jos

    Jos Well-Known Member

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    OK but how do you know it was his hand writing? Wasn't it common back then for people to fake each other's hand writing?

    You have a point but I'm just saying that some people question whether Jesus existed in the first place and in order for there to have been an actual resurrection, there would have had to have been an actual Jesus in the first place.
     
  4. Jos

    Jos Well-Known Member

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    Yes you're correct that stories aren't proof of anything but how else can someone convey an experience they had other than through stories?
     
  5. Jos

    Jos Well-Known Member

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    True, so I guess it's all trial and error until we figure out which method works best?
     
  6. Jos

    Jos Well-Known Member

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    Good assumptions but couldn't a believer just say that those are faith based assumptions?

    Why is there so much contradictory information about Jesus' life and early Christianity such that anyone on either side of the debate can make an argument for their position? I don't get why there aren't clear cut facts about his life.
     
  7. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Well-Known Member

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    My point was that there an anonymous account or an author's signature neither validates nor invalidates an eyewitness account.

    It has been proven conclusively that the entire New Testament was written early, prior to the close of the 1st century. There would have been elders who could have disputed claims like "Jesus had huge crowds He healed across Israel. Jesus openly debated the Pharisees at the Temple Mount as huge crowds watched" and etc. The fact is rather than dispute these claims, countless thousands of Israelites converted to the faith.
     
  8. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Well-Known Member

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    More accurate would be to claim that some, not all, scholars, disbelieve some, not all, of the NT's claims.
     
  9. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Well-Known Member

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    A great question, thank you. There are certainly ways to explore the issues, for example:

    Classical scholar and historian Colin Hemer chronicles Luke’s accuracy in the book of Acts verse by verse. With painstaking detail, Hemer identifies 84 facts in the last 16 chapters of Acts that have been confirmed by historical and archaeological research. As you read the following list, keep in mind that Luke did not have access to modern-day maps or nautical charts. Luke accurately records:

    1. the natural crossing between correctly named ports (Acts 13:4-5)
    2. the proper port (Perga) along the direct destination of a ship crossing from Cyprus (13:13)
    3. the proper location of Lycaonia (14:6)
    4. the unusual but correct declension of the name Lystra (14:6)
    5. the correct language spoken in Lystra—Lycaonian (14:11)
    6. two gods known to be so associated—Zeus and Hermes (14:12)
    7. the proper port, Attalia, which returning travelers would use (14:25)
    8. the correct order of approach to Derbe and then Lystra from the Cilician Gates (16:1; cf. 15:41)
    9. the proper form of the name Troas (16:8)
    10. the place of a conspicuous sailors’ landmark, Samothrace (16:11)
    11. the proper description of Philippi as a Roman colony (16:12)
    12. the right location for the river (Gangites) near Philippi (16:13)
    13. the proper association of Thyatira as a center of dyeing (16:14)
    14. correct designations for the magistrates of the colony (16:22)
    15. the proper locations (Amphipolis and Apollonia) where travelers would spend successive nights
    on this journey (17:1)
    16. the presence of a synagogue in Thessalonica (17:1)
    17. the proper term (“politarchs”) used of the magistrates there (17:6)
    18. the correct implication that sea travel is the most convenient way of reaching Athens, with the
    favoring east winds of summer sailing (17:14-15)
    19. the abundant presence of images in Athens (17:16)
    20. the reference to a synagogue in Athens (17:17)
    21. the depiction of the Athenian life of philosophical debate in the Agora (17:17)
    22. the use of the correct Athenian slang word for Paul (sper-mologos, 17:18) as well as for the court
    (Areios pagos, 17:19)
    23. the proper characterization of the Athenian character (17:21)
    24. an altar to an “unknown god” (17:23)
    25. the proper reaction of Greek philosophers, who denied the bodily resurrection (17:32)
    26. Areopagites as the correct title for a member of the court (17:34)
    27. a Corinthian synagogue (18:4)
    28. the correct designation of Gallio as proconsul, resident in Corinth (18:12)
    29. the bema (judgment seat), which overlooks Corinth’s forum (18:16ff.)
    30. the name Tyrannus as attested from Ephesus in first-century inscriptions (19:9)
    31. well-known shrines and images of Artemis (19:24)
    32. the well-attested “great goddess Artemis” (19:27)
    33. that the Ephesian theater was the meeting place of the city (19:29)
    34. the correct title grammateus for the chief executive magistrate in Ephesus (19:35)
    35. the proper title of honor neokoros, authorized by the Romans (19:35)
    36. the correct name to designate the goddess (19:37)
    37. the proper term for those holding court (19:38)
    38. use of plural anthupatoi, perhaps a remarkable reference to the fact that two men were conjointly
    exercising the functions of proconsul at this time (19:38)
    39. the “regular” assembly, as the precise phrase is attested elsewhere (19:39)
    40. use of precise ethnic designation, beroiaios (20:4)
    41. employment of the ethnic term Asianos (20:4)
    42. the implied recognition of the strategic importance assigned to this city of Troas (20:7ff.)
    43. the danger of the coastal trip in this location (20:13) 44. the correct sequence of places (20:14-
    15)
    45. the correct name of the city as a neuter plural (Patara) (21:1)
    46. the appropriate route passing across the open sea south of Cyprus favored by persistent northwest
    winds (21:3)
    47. the suitable distance between these cities (21:8)
    48. a characteristically Jewish act of piety (21:24)
    49. the Jewish law regarding Gentile use of the temple area (21:28) (Archaeological discoveries and
    quotations from Josephus confirm that Gentiles could be executed for entering the temple area. One
    inscription reads: “Let no Gentile enter within the balustrade and enclosure surrounding the
    sanctuary. Whoever is caught will be personally responsible for his consequent death.”2
    50. the permanent stationing of a Roman cohort (chiliarch) at Antonia to suppress any disturbance at
    festival times (21:31)
    51. the flight of steps used by the guards (21:31, 35)
    52. the common way to obtain Roman citizenship at this time (22:28)
    53. the tribune being impressed with Roman rather than Tarsian citizenship (22:29)
    54. Ananias being high priest at this time (23:2)
    55. Felix being governor at this time (23:34)
    56. the natural stopping point on the way to Caesarea (23:31)
    57. whose jurisdiction Cilicia was in at the time (23:34)
    58. the provincial penal procedure of the time (24:1-9)
    59. the name Porcius Festus, which agrees precisely with that given by Josephus (24:27)
    60. the right of appeal for Roman citizens (25:11)
    61. the correct legal formula (25:18)
    62. the characteristic form of reference to the emperor at the time (25:26)
    63. the best shipping lanes at the time (27:5)
    64. the common bonding of Cilicia and Pamphylia (27:4)
    65. the principal port to find a ship sailing to Italy (27:5-6)
    66. the slow passage to Cnidus, in the face of the typical northwest wind (27:7)
    67. the right route to sail, in view of the winds (27:7)
    68. the locations of Fair Havens and the neighboring site of Lasea (27:8)
    69. Fair Havens as a poorly sheltered roadstead (27:12)
    70. a noted tendency of a south wind in these climes to back suddenly to a violent northeaster, the
    well-known gregale (27:13)
    71. the nature of a square-rigged ancient ship, having no option but to be driven before a gale (27:15)
    72. the precise place and name of this island (27:16)
    73. the appropriate maneuvers for the safety of the ship in its particular plight (27:16)
    74. the fourteenth night—a remarkable calculation, based inevitably on a compounding of estimates
    and probabilities, confirmed in the judgment of experienced Mediterranean navigators (27:27)
    75. the proper term of the time for the Adriatic (27:27)
    76. the precise term (Bolisantes) for taking soundings, and the correct depth of the water near Malta
    (27:28)
    77. a position that suits the probable line of approach of a ship released to run before an easterly
    wind (27:39)
    78. the severe liability on guards who permitted a prisoner to escape (27:42)
    79. the local people and superstitions of the day (28:4-6)
    80. the proper title protos tÓs nÓsou (28:7)
    81. Rhegium as a refuge to await a southerly wind to carry them through the strait (28:13)
    82. Appii Forum and Tres Tabernae as correctly placed stopping places on the Appian Way (28:15)
    83. appropriate means of custody with Roman soldiers (28:16)
    84. the conditions of imprisonment, living “at his own expense” (8:30-31)

    Is there any doubt that Luke was an eyewitness to these events or at least had access to reliable
    eyewitness testimony? What more could he have done to prove his authenticity as a historian?

    Source: Norman Geisler
     
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  10. blü 2

    blü 2 Well-Known Member
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    Yes, they're assumptions ─ axioms, if you like; I don't see how I could get around the fact. But they're pretty universal ─ if there are strict solipsists out there, they wouldn't bother to make themselves known, of course, but there seems no evidence of them; and I haven't met anyone who lives their life on the basis that reason must be avoided, or that we're just elements in a Tron game, or dreams in the brain of a superbeing, which is what the alternatives seem to be. The argument may be available that we evolved on the basis of those three assumptions because they aid survival and breeding, ie they work; and then the further argument that this demonstrates that the assumptions are well founded.

    But certainly you and I couldn't have this discussion if we didn't share those assumptions.
    We first meet Jesus in the letters of Paul, all written in the 50s CE. Paul says he never met an historical Jesus, only a visionary one. He says Jesus pre-existed in heaven, created the material universe (which in gnosticism, God, being pure remote spirit, would never do, casting Jesus as the gnostic demiurge) and mediates between God and man. As for his earthly bio, he was born of unspecified parents of the line of David, may or may not have had a brother James, had a ministry to the Jews teaching the end-times, had followers including one named Peter, initiated the Eucharist (a Greek idea), was 'handed over' to 'the rulers of the age' who crucified him for unstated reasons, a process which involved the Jewish leadership, and was physically buried. That's it.

    Next is Mark. He's writing in the mid-70s, after the destruction of Jerusalem (70 CE). His Jesus is an ordinary Jew born without prophecies or annunciations, who doesn't become the son of God until John the Baptist baptizes him (washes him clean of sin). At that point the heavens open and God declares that he adopts Jesus as his son (on the model of God adopting David as his son in Psalm 2:7, a point made explicit in Acts 13:33). What follows is the only (purported) account of Jesus' earthly mission, those in Matthew, Luke and, more remotely, John, being based on it. Why might it not be an accurate bio? Because its episodes can be mapped onto the Tanakh, passages which the author likes to think of as messianic prophecy, through which he moves his principal character as he wishes. This suggests that at the least the author was not concerned with history but with story, and that he knew little or nothing about his principal character at all ─ perhaps excepting some sayings attributed to Jesus (though as Crossan shows, which if any were from the one original source can't be determined with any confidence), and perhaps excepting some anecdotes, perhaps the most curious being that Jesus with just the one exception, never mentions his mother except in scathing terms (Mark 3:31, Mark 6:3, Mark 15:40, Matthew 10:35, Luke 11:27. John 2:3, contrast John 19:26).

    Was there an historical Jesus? Perhaps, but if so we know very little about him. And the argument is there that no historical Jesus is necessary to account for the documents of the NT, since the author of Mark has devised a bio independently of history.
     
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  11. blü 2

    blü 2 Well-Known Member
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    My point is that there's no such account, not even a purported one.
    I proceed on the basis that the stories place the crucifixion about 30 CE; Paul writes his letters between say 51 and 58 CE, Mark 75 CE, Matthew and Luke mid-80s, John, Acts, somewhere around 100 CE. (You'll no doubt be aware of the argument that the letters of Paul were unknown in Christian circles till the mid-2nd century CE because they weren't written till then, when Marcion's followers cooked them up.)

    There are no contemporary records of Jesus anywhere. If indeed he'd been at the center of a public sensation involving not only the Sanhedrin but the Prefect in person, the odds that it'd go unnoticed are remarkably small. Not only that, but Mark's purported account of the trial of Jesus is devised using Josephus' account of the trial of Jesus son of Ananias in Wars Bk 6 Ch. 5.3. No eyewitness accounts there, hey?
    No, they didn't, not in large numbers. Instead, countless hundreds of pagans, from the Graeco-Roman world, became Christians, and that's where the numbers built up. The Christian story, not inaccurately, says that the Jews rejected the claims that Jesus was a messiah; from the Jewish point of view, Jesus couldn't have been a messiah, being neither a war leader or king or high priest, and never having been anointed by the priesthood (which is the meaning of 'messiah' and 'khristos' / Christ).
     
  12. night912

    night912 Well-Known Member

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    I already told you, comparing it with other sources. What makes you think that it was common back then for people to fake each other's hand writting? I've never heard of that.

    Again, it's irrelevant to the resurrection. The of existence of Jesus and his resurrection are two separate issues. We're talking about the resurrection of Jesus here. It doesn't matter if there are detailed information about how long his birth process was or how much he weigh. That's not evidence for the resurrection. His existence is evidence for the resurrection. Evidences are pieces of information that support a claim. It validate that whatever is being claim is true. Any information that doesn't do that is irrelevant, therefore is disregarded because it's useless.
     
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  13. night912

    night912 Well-Known Member

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    Yes. Using the wrong method will never get you to find what's is true. But by knowing what methods don't work, you eliminate the trial and error guesswork. This saves time that leads to learning new things. That's how we progress.
     
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  14. night912

    night912 Well-Known Member

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    Just plain out wrong. I never said anything about the NT, so I don't know how the NT came into your thought.
     
  15. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Veteran Member

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    Yes, stories convey experiences but the problem is that we do not know if the person(s) telling the stories actually had those experiences. In order to know if Jesus ever rose from the dead, we would need to have the experiences verified by external sources but that is impossible to do now.

    So people can either choose to believe unverified stories or reject them. I choose the latter.
     
  16. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Well-Known Member

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    Why do you still feel the people living 21 to 70 years after Jesus were ignoramuses who couldn't refute the NT (and never did so)?

    Why are you unaware that Mark and no NT writers mention the 70 CE destruction of the Temple, yet bother to place Mark at 75 so you can say he copied Josephus and not vice versa?

    Why are you unaware that there are contemporary records of Jesus, when you just said people alive in Jesus's day could read records of Jesus 21 to 70 years after He died and rose in Jerusalem?

    Why are you unaware that Jesus is said to have a secret kingdom and was to return as Messiah after being rejected for Messiah and dying for His people?

    You are very intelligent but arguing Bible 101 stuff because of a spiritual mote in your eye IMHO.
     
  17. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    What contemporary records of Jesus exist? I am being dead serious. Sources and links please.
     
  18. blü 2

    blü 2 Well-Known Member
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    Not least because there was no such thing as the NT before the Council of Rome in 380 CE.

    Meanwhile, the letters of Paul were unknown to Christians generally until the 2nd century, when supporters of Marcion made them public. Mark appears in the mid 70s, Matthew and Luke in the mid-80s, John and Acts around 100 CE. Their circulation was by hand-copy or word of mouth among the faithful; they weren't particularly public documents.
    The author of Mark has Jesus "predict" the destruction of Jerusalem (Mark 13:2), so he's writing after 70 CE. The author of Matthew copies Mark but specifies the Temple (Matthew 24:2). And Luke 19:22 sets out a parallel passage.
    It was theologian Ted Weeden who pointed out that the author of Mark based his account of the trial of Jesus on Josephus' trial of Jesus son of Ananias in Wars Bk 6 Ch. 5.3. You couldn't buy a copy of Wars till 75 CE or so.
    First, I didn't say people in Jesus' day could read any of those documents. I simply referred to evidence of when they were written. See above.

    Second, if there was an historical Jesus, one thing he didn't do was rise from the dead. As I've pointed out to you more than once previously, and in some detail, the "evidence" for the resurrection is a forensic disaster. If you've forgotten, just say so and I'll take you through it again.
    What's a "secret kingdom", exactly? How can you tell whether something is a "secret kingdom" or not?

    And as you doubtless know, it's the Son of Man who's going to return to administer the Kingdom ─ which as you also know is to happen within the lifetime of some of those present when Jesus spoke (Mark 9:1, Matthew 16:28, Luke 9:27; and Mark 13:28-30 and Matthew 24:32-34). That appointment seems to have slipped Jesus' mind after he ascended, but although it's not hard to infer that Jesus and the Son of Man are the same entity, there's no unambiguous statement to that effect. (So you could eg argue that although the Kingdom is running a couple of millennia late. don't blame Jesus until you're sure that it's his department that has responsibility for that project.)
     
    #198 blü 2, Jan 9, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2020
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  19. Jos

    Jos Well-Known Member

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    Wait are you saying that Luke actually wrote Luke? If that's the case, why is it that most scholars believe that the Gospels were written by anonymous writers?
     
  20. Spartan

    Spartan Well-Known Member

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    You've been sold a bill of goods in thinking "most scholars" claim the Gospels are anonymous. From my review most conservative scholars affirm the traditional Gospel authors, and here are the evidences why: Early church Fathers UNANIMOUSLY confirm traditional Gospel authors -

    Matthew

    1. Church Fathers and Matthew’s Gospel

    Mark Authorship

    2. Church Fathers and Mark’s Gospel

    Luke Authorship

    3. Church Fathers and Luke’s Gospel

    John Authorship

    4. Church Fathers and John’s Gospel
     
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