The Ressurection

Discussion in 'Christianity' started by Jatom, May 14, 2004.

  1. Jatom

    Jatom Member

    I want to start off by saying that the intent this defense is to strengthen the faith (loyalty) of the believer, and to offer a defense for the hope that is within me, for the unbeliever. I'll start off by re-posting what I previously posted in the old forums: (Thanks Alsharad!)


    The Resurrection


    Does the resurrection have any evidence? Is there any way to verify the validity of the eyewitness accounts? Can the New Testament be trusted? I'm attempt to answer these questions in the next few posts.

    Part one: The New Testament

    Many seem to believe that the New Testament has been corrupted and can longer be trusted. But is this really the case? In oder to build a case for the resurrection, I first need to establish a case for the the New Testament.

    Consider the following:

    1.Atom wrote a defense of the ressurction of christ, and Christiianity on Hp forums

    2.Jatom wwrote a deffense of the ressurection of Chrst, an hristianity on Hip forums

    3.Jatm wrote a defense of the ressurction and Christianity n Hip forums

    4.Jatomwrote a defense of the ressurectionn of Christt, and Christianity on Hip frums

    5.Jatom wrole a d femse of t e ressurection of Christ, and Christianoity on Hip Forums.

    From the following 5 writings we could determine what the original text said:

    Jatom wrote a defense of the resurrection of Christ, and Christianity, on Hip Forums.

    This is the same method used for secular texts as well as NT criticism. The manuscript copies are used to determine the original. For many well-known classical authors, such as Plutarch, Seutonius, Tacitus, Polybius, Thucydides, Xenophon...,the total number of manuscript copies is typically less than ten with the earliest copies dating from 750 to 1600 years after the original was first written, yet, in light of this, very few scholars question the reliability of such writing. One only needs to compare the numbers mentioned above with the New Testament, to reveal how vastly inferior their textual evidence is. The New Testament contains 24,000(!) manuscript copies, with the earliest fragments and complete copies dating between 50 and 300 years after the original. Not to mention 36,000 early quotations from the Church fathers, from which alone the entire New testament (save for a few verses) could be constructed. This is an overwhelming amount of evidence, more so than any other ancient writing.

    So what about the 24,000 manuscripts? Do they show any signs of tampering? Nope. The vast majority of variants are recognized as unintentional copyist errors: repetition of words or sentences, grammatically errors, etc. In fact, The New Testament is considered 99% textually pure with NO Christian Doctrine dependent upon ANY textual variant. And in regards to textual variants, one site notes:





    "There is now general agreement that the textual problems in Shakespeare are of such complexity that no text can be established that will commend the general assent that constitutes 'definitiveness.' " [ibid., 26] Note: This is the closest I have seen in any "secular" textual criticism book to the statements of despair and woe made by some N[ew]T[estament] text-critics to the effect, "We can NEVER know what was REALLY written!!!" (See below.) Most critics, however, are of a far more positive bent! For example, though an edition of Richard III "can advertise that they contain more than a thousand variants from the conventional text" [Bowe.TLC, 3], we do not see text critics wondering if that play actually was written entirely differently! "Hamlet will not be revealed as a woman, or as the villian; he will still be melancholy and at odds with the life about him." [ibid., 8] Textual variants are important to note, but we are not going to find that they significantly alter the storyline! ​

    So do we contain the original New Testament? Yes! In fact, one cannot question the reliability of the New Testament without first questioning every other ancient writing, because the evidence surrounding the New Testament is so much more superior! As one person puts notes:

    Most historians accept the textual accuracy of other ancient works on far less adequate manuscript grounds than is available for the New Testament.

    Now, what about the reliability of the writers (particularly the writers of Matthew, Mark, Luke and Acts, and John,)? Can we determine that they faithfully recorded what they and others saw? There are several ways to determine this. First we can look at internal evidences, i.e., we can examine the authors claims to determine if any of them disqualifies them as trustworthy writers: do they contradict themselves? Is there anything they write that would cause one to objectively suspect their trustworthiness? Do they mention objects or concepts out of their historical context (a story involving Jesus giving a sermon from the passenger side of a car, for example) The answer to these questions is no. In fact, we only see claims that serve to strengthen their reliability. For example, they record their own sins(Matt 26:56; 69-75), they put women as the finders of the empty tomb (more on this later) (Lk 24:1-3), they record there deity's own ignorance (Matt 24:36; Mar 13:32) and weakness's (Matt 4:2) Obviously the list goes on. The point is, the authors include often embarrassing events to the effect of "like it or not, this is what really happened." This serves to strengthen their integrity, and lower the possibly of the stories being fabricated. (More on this later.)

    We can also examine any external evidences to determine the validity of their claims. Going back to the above illustration about Jatom and his defense.

    Jatom wrote a defense of the resurrection of Christ, and Christianity, on Hip Forums

    Several external evidences that could verify the above statement. Was “Jatom” ever mentioned in other places? Did “Hip Forums” really exist, and was it a place where writings could be archived? What was the “resurrection”, and was it something that was defensible? What about “Christianity”, is it mentioned elsewhere? What is known of “Christ”, and is he/she/it said to have resurrected?

    The New Testament excels in this area too take the following:





    Is there corroborating evidence for the claims made in the New Testament outside the New Testament? Or are the claims or events of the New Testament successfully refuted by other competent reports or eyewitnesses? Are there statements or assertions in the New Testament that are demonstrably false according to known archaeological, historic, scientific or other data?



    The New Testament again passes the test. For example, Luke wrote one-fourth of the New Testament. His careful historical writing has been documented from detailed personal archaeological investigation by former critic Sir William Ramsay, who stated after his painstaking research, "Luke’s history is unsurpassed in respect of its trustworthiness." 1 A. N. Sherwin-White, the distinguished historian of Rome, stated of Luke: "For [the book of] Acts the confirmation of historicity is overwhelming. Any attempt to reject its basic historicity even in matters of detail must now appear absurd."

    Note that there has has yet to be any archaeological data that contradicts the New Testament.




    This short exposition is merely a brief overview, and I will be willing to go into further details for anyone who wants further information. The point of it was the establish the reliability of the New Testament.
     
  2. Jatom

    Jatom Member

    Part 2

    Before we continue any further, I want to first establish, in this brief post, that Christ did in fact live, and was crucified. The existence of Christ can (I think) be easily proven by quoting sources that either mention, or imply Jesus' existence. Take Josephus an ancient historian, for example, who writes:



    Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man,if it be lawful to call him a man; for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ.And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day; as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him.And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.

    It is generally agreed that the quote is only partially authentic, with some parts “dressed up” by a Christian scribe (underlined). But with all this, what is undoubtedly certain, is that Josephus does in fact mention Jesus. In fact, an early Church father, Origen, directly refers to this passages:





    And to so great a reputation among the people for righteousness did this James rise, that Flavius Josephus, who wrote the "Antiquities of the Jews" in twenty books, when wishing to exhibit the cause why the people suffered so great misfortunes that even the temple was razed to the ground, said, that these things happened to them in accordance with the wrath of God in consequence of the things which they had dared to do against James the brother of Jesus who is called Christ. And the wonderful thing is, that, though he did not accept Jesus as Christ, he yet gave testimony that the righteousness of James was so great; and he says that the people thought that they had suffered these things because of James.


    And here:

    For in the 18th book of his Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus bears witness to John as having been a Baptist, and as promising purification to those who underwent the rite. Now this writer, although not believing in Jesus as the Christ, in seeking after the cause of the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple, whereas he ought to have said that the conspiracy against Jesus was the cause of these calamities befalling the people, since they put to death Christ, who was a prophet, says nevertheless-being, although against his will, not far from the truth - that these disasters happened to the Jews as a punishment for the death of James the Just, who was a brother of Jesus (called Christ) - the Jews having put him to death, although he was a man most distinguished for his justice.
    This is important because during the time this third century writer wrote the above, Christianity was still a minor movement with no power or influence. This is significant because it means that there is good reason to believe that the Origen was addressing the original un-”dress-up” version of the passage (since it's very unlikely that 1. Christians had the power to change what was written in Antiquities of the Jews, 2. that any changed version would remain unchallenged) which implies the existence of Jesus


    That said, heres another, often forgotten, quote by Josephus:
    Antiquities 20.9.1 But the younger Ananus who, as we said, received the high priesthood, was of a bold disposition and exceptionally daring; he followed the party of the Sadducees, who are severe in judgment above all the Jews, as we have already shown. As therefore Ananus was of such a disposition, he thought he had now a good opportunity, as Festus was now dead, and Albinus was still on the road; so he assembled a council of judges, and brought before it the brother of Jesus the so-called Christ, whose name was James, together with some others, and having accused them as law-breakers, he delivered them over to be stoned.


    Again the existence of Jesus is clearly implied. Obviously the case can be further strengthen, but that is not the intend of this post. There are other quotes, and evidences (for example, that early opposition of Christianity didn't question the existence of Jesus—on the contrary His existence was implied in their arguments!). But I do want to quote one more historian's work:

    But not all the relief that could come from man, not all the bounties that the prince could bestow, nor all the atonements which could be presented to the gods, availed to relieve Nero from the infamy of being believed to have ordered the conflagration, the fire of Rome. Hence to suppress the rumor, he falsely charged with the guilt, and punished Christians, who were hated for their enormities. Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius: but the pernicious superstition, repressed for a time broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief originated, but through the city of Rome also, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their center and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind.
    Here we have a quote from the Roman historian Tacitus. Notice Tacitus is an opposer of Christianity much like Josephus (a Pharisee).

    So we have here quotes from two reliable sources, both of whom were opposers of Christianity. Two points relevant to this post can be determined from these quotes: 1. Jesus existed 2. Jesus was crucified. In fact, I could have avoided this whole post by simply stating the truth of the matter: that the existence and crucifixion of Jesus are the two things the vast majority scholars do agree on. And with this in mind I will next move on to the crucifixion. Until than, God Bless!
     
  3. ChiefCowpie

    ChiefCowpie hugs and bugs

    i have no problem with resurection...its a natural phenomenon of mystics in India too...jesus resurected himself...woo hoo!!!!...christians of little knowledge pervert this to turn christianity into a cult that excludes other spiritual practices as being invalid
     
  4. HuckFinn

    HuckFinn Senior Member

    Please elaborate. I've heard that some yogis can train themselves to virtually stop their heartbeat for a while and then resucitate themselves. That hardly seems comparable to enduring a tortuous death by crucifixion, losing all blood, being wrapped in burial garments and sealed in a tomb, then coming back to life and ascending to heaven without ever dying again. I think we'd be hearing about this on the news if it were a regular phenomenon in India.
     
  5. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    Hey Guys,
    I'll take a crack at this again!

    First let me state that I was raised Roman Catholic (the one true apolistic church) was taught in public school and by nuns had Christmas eve dinner with the local priests for several years and know at least one Catholic missionary preist down in S.A. (Haven't seen him in years).

    But, I will take the devil's advocate role.

    Tell me if I get overbearing as I don't want to put my soul in danger and several bishops in the U.S. are already banning people from communion if they vote for Kerry.

    Now, if you want to Believe in Christ, fine, but, I don't think you can conclusively prove that he ever existed or was crucified. Not like you can prove that oh, Julius Ceaser or Plato existed.

    So,
    First, Jatum,

    6 jabillion exact copies of an unverifiable document mean nothing. Please quote these manuscripts so are referring to. Passage, source, author, first date of known existence.

    Do they show any tampering? Do you mean after they were finalized or before. Again dates, sources, passages, etc.


    ......So do we contain the original New Testament? Yes! In fact, one cannot question the reliability of the New Testament without first questioning every other ancient writing, because the evidence surrounding the New Testament is so much more superior! As one person puts notes:

    Most historians accept the textual accuracy of other ancient works on far less adequate manuscript grounds than is available for the New Testament.


    Poppycock, we can question any document. By all means question every other ancient writing, let's do it!

    Who is this "one person"?

    How about this person,

    Most historians accept the textual accuracy of other ancient works on far greater grounds than is available for the New Testament because I said so.


    ......Now, what about the reliability of the writers (particularly the writers of Matthew, Mark, Luke and Acts, and John,)? Can we determine that they faithfully recorded what they and others saw? There are several ways to determine this. First we can look at internal evidences, i.e., we can examine the authors claims to determine if any of them disqualifies them as trustworthy writers: do they contradict themselves? Is there anything they write that would cause one to objectively suspect their trustworthiness? Do they mention objects or concepts out of their historical context (a story involving Jesus giving a sermon from the passenger side of a car, for example) The answer to these questions is no.

    Wrong, I'll post some later as this is getting long.


    .....The New Testament again passes the test. For example, Luke wrote one-fourth of the New Testament. His careful historical writing has been documented from detailed personal archaeological investigation by former critic Sir William Ramsay, who stated after his painstaking research, "Luke’s history is unsurpassed in respect of its trustworthiness." 1 A. N. Sherwin-White, the distinguished historian of Rome, stated of Luke: "For [the book of] Acts the confirmation of historicity is overwhelming. Any attempt to reject its basic historicity even in matters of detail must now appear absurd."

    Note that there has has yet to be any archaeological data that contradicts the New Testament.


    Please, blank statements. Facts, facts. What, because Luke is written in the proper time frame everything in it is true?
    What history is confirmed? Examples. Even if they are I can write a story about a man today and list all kinds of accurate data proper to the time period, so what? When I read a supeman comic it may contain all kinds of period facts and data, it may not, does this prove that superman existed or disprove it?


    The Josephus passage,
    Yeah take out the underlined and what do you have? Jesus was and still is a comman name. So we have a doctored passage. I'll look this up and post more later.

    then we quote Origen who is quoting a doctored passage.
    More on him later.

    The second Jos quote I will look up and comment on later.

    Obviously we need to strengthen the historical evidence. So far we have one questinable author. This for the greatest human ever in the history of man, known throughout the ancient world, hated by the jews and Romans, loved by everyone else, millions of people, thousands of historical documentsand records from the roman era in questiion...one source.

    Tacitus is talking about occurances that happened many years after the supposed life of Christ. He is telling us what the Christians and Nero believed. So what? All this proves is that they believed this stuff, not that it's true.

    ......I could have avoided this whole post by simply stating the truth of the matter: that the existence and crucifixion of Jesus are the two things the vast majority scholars do agree on.


    Sez you. This has been debated scince the birth of Christianity. Ever hear of the Gnostic Christians??

    Even if "the vast majority" agree, so what? The "vast majority"once believed the world was flat, the sun orbited the earth, and man could never reach the moon!
    The "vast majority" once scorned me for having long hair! Yes, it's true! Were they right?!



    Oh, what fun!!!
     
  6. Jatom

    Jatom Member

    But, I will take the devil's advocate role.

    Very well...

    Now, if you want to Believe in Christ, fine, but, I don't think you can conclusively prove that he ever existed or was crucified. Not like you can prove that oh, Julius Ceaser or Plato existed.

    I not sure what you mean by “conclusively,” but I believe His existence can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

    6 jabillion exact copies of an unverifiable document mean nothing. Please quote these manuscripts so are referring to. Passage, source, author, first date of known existence.

    Again, I'm not sure what you mean by “unverifiable,” but the process described above is the same literary criticism method used on all ancient writings; from Plato to Josephus to Shakespeare. The number of manuscripts (mss.) is significant because they are what is compared.

    Please quote these manuscripts so are referring to.

    The mss. are copies of the New Testament (NT), (fragments, and wholes)

    Passage, source, author, first date of known existence.

    I'm not sure what you asking for here. Maybe you didn't understand that the mss. are copies of the original text. They're generally divided into the Alexandrian, Western, Caesarean, and Byzantine Textual families, and Papyri, Great Uncial Codices, and Minuscules Textual witness.

    Do they show any tampering? Do you mean after they were finalized or before. Again dates, sources, passages, etc.

    Again, I'm not sure what you're asking for, or that you fully understand the implications of my first post. I do understand my post was a bit general, but that's all it's meant to be.

    Poppycock, we can question any document. By all means question every other ancient writing, let's do it!

    Again, I don't think you fully understand what is being said. The textual evidence surrounding the NT is vastly superior to, say, Tacitus; therefore, in order to logically stay consistent, one would need to question the reliability of Annals before the NT, that is, the document that is textually inferior would need to be questioned before the document that is textually superior. In the case of the NT, every other ancient writing is inferior. Throw out the NT, and you must then logically throw out every inferior text as well, and in effect, throw out all our ancient history, literature, etc...

    Please, blank statements. Facts, facts. What, because Luke is written in the proper time frame everything in it is true?

    This is a gross misrepresentation. Archaeological data serves as an external evidence. Just as in the above illustration: “Jatom wrote a defense of the resurrection of Christ, and Christianity, on Hip Forums,”finding external evidence about “Hip Forums”, “Jatom”, and “Christ”, would help to strengthen the validity of the statement. And just as finding external archaeological data that supports the NT, strengthens its reliability.

    Yeah take out the underlined and what do you have? Jesus was and still is a comman name. So we have a doctored passage. I'll look this up and post more later.

    LOL! What was a common name? Jesus, Yeshua, Joshua? And what does it matter? I suppose, now, when one mentions “George” I can't be certain of if he's talking about the president, or my next door neighbor!


    Seriously, though, even without the “alterations” Josephus still mentions Jesus, and that he was crucified.

    Obviously we need to strengthen the historical evidence. So far we have one questinable author. This for the greatest human ever in the history of man, known throughout the ancient world, hated by the jews and Romans, loved by everyone else, millions of people, thousands of historical documentsand records from the roman era in questiion...one source.

    ...well, what do you suppose should have been written of Him, and by whom? You do realize that this was a time of oral transmission, that the majority of people were illiterate, and that Jesus was not loved my “millions of people” (honestly, you already mentioned that the Jews and Romans hated Him, so where would these “millions” even come from)? And I'm not sure what you mean by “thousands of historical documentsand records from the roman era,” or how that's even relevant.

    Tacitus is talking about occurances that happened many years after the supposed life of Christ. He is telling us what the Christians and Nero believed. So what? All this proves is that they believed this stuff, not that it's true.

    ... yes, indeed

    Sez you. This has been debated scince the birth of Christianity. Ever hear of the Gnostic Christians??

    Yes, early gnostics usually believed that Christ was a lesser deity, some even held to a belief in docetism, but whatever their beliefs, they presumed Jesus' existence.

    Even if "the vast majority" agree, so what? The "vast majority"once believed the world was flat, the sun orbited the earth, and man could never reach the moon!

    Who were the “vast majority” and by what means did they believe the world was flat? What evidences were available at the time, to prove the “vast majority's” notion wrong? What tools were available at the time? How much research did they do? Are these even valid comparisons?
     
  7. Brocktoon

    Brocktoon Banned

    Not to go off-topic but I just wanted to clarify something.

    The Greeks and Romans were entirely aware the Earth was round.
    To the best of our knowledge, most any civilisations (with preserved astronomy records of some kind) seemed to be perfectly aware the Earth was round.

    Now.. Meagain, by your standards there is no way of knowing this. The ancient manuscripts could have easily been fabricated by later peoples just trying to make it look like the Greeks knew the Earth was round.

    I know that many Pagan groups (and I believe this includes the Romans who might have got it from the Greeks) did actualy believe the Sun orbited around the Earth.
    I suppose from the available view we have - they were at least correct in 'a sense' that orbiting around each other is happening.
    Romans converted to Christianity and that was one belief that just stayed 'as is' without any real need to question it or bother with it.
    Then a Roman Catholic named Galileo decided to clarify the whole issue for us.

    The last historical analysis of people 'Not believing man could reach the Moon' is beyond any history I was taught :O
    Is there some ancient documents in which some people actually thought about flying to the Moon - then agreed it was impossible or what?
    You got me there ;)

    Sorry to interupt the festivities with some historical nit-picking but I notice a lot of us hold to this idea that ancient peoples 'believed the Earth was flat'.
    This is not the case.

    err.... that is... based on the best documentation we have.. which doesnt 'prove' anything .. ughhhhhh lol
     
  8. Alsharad

    Alsharad Member

    By the way, here are a few more extra-biblical sources. Some you have already included, others I think you missed.

    Flavius Josephus (AD 37?-101?) mentions Jesus - Antiquities, Book 18, ch. 3, par. 3.

    Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man; for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was [the] Christ. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, (9) those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day; (10) as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.

    There is debate among scholars as to the authenticity of this quote since it is so favorable to Jesus.

    Flavius Josephus (AD 37?-101?) mentions James, the brother of Jesus - Antiquities, Book 20, ch. 19.

    "Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others, [or, some of his companions]; and when he had formed an accusation against them as breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned: but as for those who seemed the most equitable of the citizens, and such as were the most uneasy at the breach of the laws, they disliked what was done."

    Flavius Josephus (AD 37?-101?) mentions Ananias the High Priest who was mentioned in Acts 23:2

    Now as soon as Albinus was come to the city of Jerusalem, he used all his endeavors and care that the country might be kept in peace, and this by destroying many of the Sicarii. But as for the high priest, Ananias (25) he increased in glory every day, and this to a great degree, and had obtained the favor and esteem of the citizens in a signal manner; for he was a great hoarder up of money

    Acts 23:2, "And the high priest Ananias commanded those standing beside him to strike him [Paul] on the mouth."

    Tacitus (A.D. c.55-A.D. c.117, Roman historian) mentions "christus" who is Jesus - Annals

    "Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular."

    Ref. from http://classics.mit.edu/Tacitus/annals.mb.txt

    Thallus Circa AD 52, eclipse of the sun. Thallus wrote a history of the Eastern Mediterranean world from the Trojan War to his own time. His writings are only found as citations by others. Julius Africanus who wrote about AD 221 mentioned Thallus' account of an eclipse of the sun.

    "On the whole world there pressed a most fearful darkness; and the rocks were rent by an earthquake, and many places in Judea and other districts were thrown down. This darkness Thallus, in the third book of his History, calls, as appears to me without reason, an eclipse of the sun."

    Is this a reference to the eclipse at the crucifixion? Luke 23:44-45, "And it was now about the sixth hour, and darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour, 45 the sun being obscured; and the veil of the temple was torn in two."

    The oddity is that Jesus' crucifixion occurred at the Passover which was a full moon. It is not possible for a solar eclipse to occur at a full moon. Note that Julius Africanus draws the conclusion that Thallus' mentioning of the eclipse was describing the one at Jesus' crucifixion. It may not have been.

    Julius Africanus, Extant Writings, XVIII in the Ante–Nicene Fathers, ed. by Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1973), vol. VI, p. 130. as cited in Habermas, Gary R., The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ, (Joplin, MO: College Press Publishing Company) 1996.

    Pliny the Younger mentioned Christ. Pliny was governor of Bithynia in Asia Minor. Pliny wrote ten books. The tenth around AD 112.

    "They (the Christians) were in the habit of meeting on a certain fixed day before it was light, when they sang in alternate verses a hymn to Christ, as to a god, and bound themselves by a solemn oath, not to any wicked deeds, but never to commit any fraud, theft or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to deliver it up; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble to partake of food—but food of an ordinary and innocent kind."

    Pliny, Letters, transl. by William Melmoth, rev. by W.M.L. Hutchinson (Cambridge: Harvard Univ. Press, 1935), vol. II, X:96 as cited in Habermas, Gary R., The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ, (Joplin, MO: College Press Publishing Company) 1996.

    The Talmud
    "On the eve of the Passover Yeshu was hanged. For forty days before the execution took place, a herald went forth and cried, "He is going forth to be stoned because he has practiced sorcery and enticed Israel to apostasy. Any one who can say anything in his favor, let him come forward and plead on his behalf." But since nothing was brought forward in his favor he was hanged on the eve of the Passover!"

    Gal. 3:13, "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree."

    Luke 22:1, "Now the Feast of Unleavened Bread, which is called the Passover, was approaching. 2And the chief priests and the scribes were seeking how they might put Him to death; for they were afraid of the people."

    This quotation was taken from the reading in The Babylonian Talmud, transl. by I. Epstein (London: Soncino, 1935), vol. III, Sanhedrin 43a, p. 281 as cited in Habermas, Gary R., The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ, (Joplin, MO: College Press Publishing Company) 1996.

    Lucian (circa 120-after 180) mentions Jesus. Greek writer and rhetorician.

    "The Christians, you know, worship a man to this day—the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites, and was crucified on that account. . . . You see, these misguided creatures start with the general conviction that they are immortal for all time, which explains the contempt of death and voluntary self-devotion which are so common among them; and then it was impressed on them by their original lawgiver that they are all brothers, from the moment that they are converted, and deny the gods of Greece, and worship the crucified sage, and live after his laws. All this they take quite on faith, with the result that they despise all worldly goods alike, regarding them merely as common property."

    Lucian, The Death of Peregrine, 11–13, in The Works of Lucian of Samosata, transl. by H.W. Fowler and F.G. Fowler, 4 vols. (Oxford: Clarendon, 1949), vol. 4, as cited in Habermas, Gary R., The Historical Jesus: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Christ, (Joplin, MO: College Press Publishing Company) 1996.

    Though Lucian opposed Christianity, he acknowledges Jesus, that Jesus was crucified, that Christians worship him, and that this was done by faith.

    I have to pipe in on the "vast majority... so what?" comment. The strength of the argument is that even those scholars whose positions would be strengthened by showing the New Testament (the Gospels in particular) to be a fabrication agree that the New Testament is reliable for discussing the historicity of Christ and the times in which He lived on earth. It is not in their best interest to agree that Christ actually lived and was crucified, but they still agree that it happened. This is why it is a strong argument.

    By the way, Meagain, you asked "When I read a supeman comic it may contain all kinds of period facts and data, it may not, does this prove that superman existed or disprove it?" The analogy is fallacious. Yes, Superman comics do contain all kinds of period facts; however, the also contain MANY non-historical settings and events (like, say, the existence of the city of Metropolis). Superman also has contradicting literature. In one Superman comic Lois Lane may die where in another she is alive and well. Neither problem occurs with Scriptures. There are no falsified locations (in fact, all locations mentioned that have been found are exactly where the scriptures say they are). There are also no direct contradictions.

    Anyway, glad this thread is back. I am sure it will be fun!
     
  9. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    Alright guys, this is going to be long and involved.

    We need to stop using the shotguns here and get out the high powered rifles, so to speak. It will take me forever to answer all the stuff you guys are posting at one time.

    Let's pick one topic and duke it out until we run out of ammunition, then move on to the next.

    Surely we realize that it will be hard to actually change anyones beliefs anyway, but, we may cause someone to think a little.

    So, I can, and will, in time answer all the above stuff with counter arguements but, I will start here.

    ....Superman also has contradicting literature. In one Superman comic Lois Lane may die where in another she is alive and well.

    Yes, I know, it is fiction and a comic book.

    .......Neither problem occurs with Scriptures.


    Scripture has no contradictions?
    I will site one. There are many, if you like I will site more.


    JC's genealogy, he descended from the line of David as the promised Messiah of Jewish beliefs:
    Gospel of Matthew................Gospel of Luke
    (1 v 1-18).............................(3 v 23-38)
    Jesus..................................Jesus
    Joseph................................Joseph
    so far so good
    Jacob..................................Heli
    Matthan..............................Matthat
    Eleazar...............................Levi
    Eliud..................................Melchi
    Achim................................Jannai
    Zadok.................................Joseph
    Azor...................................Mattathiah
    Eliakim...............................Amos
    Abiud.................................Nahum
    so on for 16 more names, none of which match, then
    David.................................Er
    Matthew stops here.............Joshua
    ..........................................Eliezer
    So on for 12 more names then
    ..........................................David
    Then Luke continues back to Adam and the big G.

    Now it seems to me that we have two Gospels which contradict themselves, but does it really matter scince JC was born of a virgin anyway and Joseph is not his biological father? God is his father, not Joseph. A contradiction?

    "It is by the Holy Spirit that she has conceived this child."
    -Matthew 1 v 23

    Now, I didn't really check these in the bible I got them from another book so somebody check please.
     
  10. Brocktoon

    Brocktoon Banned

    If it helps any...

    ... I know I was involved in some geneology searches with a group, and one person had a situation of being adopted by gentiles from a couple in which the biological mother was Jewish.

    OK... now what she found was that Jews seemed to make no distinction or exception with adoption when it came to lineages.
    There were some biblical passages that confirmed this but for the life of me I wont remember them?

    What Im wondering if this is the concept we are seeing with Jesus Geneology. Since 'biological' birth didn't seem to have any bearing on your descendency?

    I know thats not a 'scholarly' answer but I thought it might fit into this question.
     
  11. Alsharad

    Alsharad Member

    Brocktoon, you seem to be right on the money. Meagain, most people forget that every person has two lineages (maternal and paternal). That is exactly what we have here. Matthew was written to the Jews and as such contains his legal/paternal ancestry. Luke was a doctor and a historian and his gospel was written for the gentiles. Luke's geneology contains Jesus's biological lineage through Mary.

    Remember that you must interpret the Bible in its historical, cultural, and literary stylistic context. You cannot just pull two passages out of context and say that they are contradictory without looking to see if they fit within the historical context. This is exactly what has happened here.

    Breaking up genealogies into male and female representations was acceptable in the ancient Near East culture since it was often impolite to speak of women without proper conditions being met: male presence, etc. Therefore, one genealogy is of Mary and the other of Joseph, even though both mention Joseph. In other words, the Mary was counted "in" Joseph and under his headship.

    Also, do any critics actually think that those who collected the books of the New Testament, and who believed it was inerrant, were unaware of this blatant differentiation in genealogies? Does anyone actually think that the Christians were so dense that they were unaware of the differences in the genealogy lists, closed their eyes and put the gospels into the canon anyway hoping no one would notice? Not at all. They knew the cultural context and had no problem with it knowing that one was of Joseph and the other of Mary.

    Also, please make sure that your contradictions actually contradict one another. This would have been a contradiction if both lineages claimed to be his paternal lineage or if they had said that they were the only lineage. Here we have a difference that is pertty easily explained once you recognize the historical context. You will find that most (if not all) of the "contradictions" in the New Testament are not true contradictions, they are simply differences which require some explanation.
     
  12. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    Al,

    I'm sorry, but you are dancing around an obvious contradiction.

    You still make a huge leap at the name Joseph. You're telling me that we sidestep from Christ to Joseph then back to Mary's family. Pretty weak. Then we end up with the house of David on both sides?

    In addition, you have not answered the question of why we trace any linage through Joseph at all. Biological birth has no bearing!? So bloodlines are meaningless? Why not trace the genealogy through Mary, period?

    Let's see, we trace lineages through two parents, counting adoption, sidestepping from one parent back to the other and both parents end up with the House of David?

    Go here, a Catholic site
    http://www.disciplesnow.com/catholic/html/article327.html
    To see that it was not comman practice to follow the female's line at that time, but we can let the bible say whatever we want in contradiction to every other known fact of the time and misrepresent history to suit our needs.

    Go here for a representation of my reservations on the female line thing:
    http://japanupdate.com/forums/?do=search&action=individual&forum_id=13&id=21611

    "As for having the writer of Luke tracing Jesus’ geneology to David through his mother, it isn’t believable. If the geneology in Luke is that of Mary’s then why isn’t Mary listed on it? Imagine, a geneology of a person who isn’t even listed on it. Geneologies always record the person who is the subject of the record. If Luke’s list was that of Mary’s she would have been listed. She isn’t. She is absent. It cannot be attributed to her.

    (You make the statement that [Not you Al])... Luke begins at Jesus, and follows the genealogy of Mary, passing through the patriarchs, ending with the very first man, Adam.

    You must show us why Luke’s geneology is that of Mary’s. To merely assert it is no evidence whatsoever. If Luke had meant to write Mary’s geneology he would have placed her in it. He does not. Why? Because in Biblical times the geneologies of women were not kept. Family lines were not matriarchal. They were patriarchal. The seed passed through the males. By alleging that Lukes geneology is referring to that of Mary is asking readers to make a blind jump and accept it even thought there is nothing to warrant such a belief.

    (You make the statement that [Again not you Al])... Today, it would be politically incorrect to map a woman's genealogy through her husband, however, in Luke's day, it was proper and correct.

    Why do you think it was correct to map the genealogy of a woman through her husband in Luke’s day? You’ve alleged that it was so, so please show us that this was a common practice. In the whole Bible you will not find one woman’s genealogy mapped. Why not? You won’t because they didn’t keep the genealogies of women. "-from the site

    A couple quotes:
    "Both genealogies are false and forged lists of mostly fictitious names." -Joseph Wheless, Forgery in Christianity, Health Research, 1990, p. 207

    "A number of the names, in reality, are not "patriarchs" but older gods."-Acharya S, The Christ Conspiracy,1999, p. 41

    Comments?


    Shall we try another and see if the case builds or distructs?
    (Still on the contradiction thingy)

    Luke-Jesus was born during the census of Quirinius, 6 CE.
    Matthew-during the reign of King Herod who died in 4 BCE.

    4,3,2,1,2,3,4,5,6.....is that a nine year difference? My source sez ten years, what am I doing wrong here? Whatever, we have two different dates.

    I will make a prediction: Wrong Herod, Matthew meant Herod Archelaus but got confused, but:

    King Herod 73-4 BCE
    Herod Archelaus: Jewish leader, ruler of Samaria, Judaea and Idumea between 4 BCE and 6 CE.

    "Matthew implies that Jesus' parents Joseph and Mary were afraid to go to the territories ruled by Archelaus, and therefore settled in Galilee (Matthew 2.22). " -http://www.livius.org/he-hg/herodians/herod_archelaus.htm

    so JC was already born at the time of Herod Arcelaus, can't be him.


    Herod Antipas: Jewish leader, ruler of Galilee and Peraea between 4 BCE and 39 CE.
    Herod Agrippa: Jewish king, ruled 37-44.

    Wrong dates, can't be them.


    I can't find any other Herods.

    That leaves the Q dude, here is where the literalist take a stand:

    Want to make the case for assumtions, alterations of changed names (ie forgery), mistranslations, etc. to resove this problem? go here:
    http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/p_greetham/wisemen/chron1.html
    If true this would show that at least some of the scriptures have been altered, mis-interperted, mis-copied, "massaged" or forged.



    How about this site for a rebuttal to the above site:
    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/quirinius.html#Conclusion
    "Conclusion: There is no way to rescue the Gospels of Matthew and Luke from contradicting each other on this one point of historical fact. The contradiction is plain and irrefutable, and stands as proof of the fallibility of the Bible, as well as the falsehood of one of the two New Testament accounts of the Nativity."

    Or here: http://www.ibri.org/04census.htm , which goes the other way! Surprise! (Check it out maybe I missed something!)


    I would suggest starting here where we also have links on the geneology thing!
    An excerpt, please see the site for the arguement.​

    " And so we can see how, from a historian’s perspective, the birth/infancy narratives are extremely problematic. Even the genealogies do not agree (see here). The accounts of Jesus' birth and infancy in the Gospels are best regarded as legendary and theological attempts to say something about Jesus by filling in the gaps in an unknown period in his life. As we shall see slightly later, it was quite normal procedure to attribute a miraculous birth to a person of importance in the ancient world. If that is what Matthew and Luke do in their Gospels, then perhaps we should read them precisely as just that: as attempts not to give us historical data about when and where Jesus was born, but to tell stories that will help the reader of their Gospel to understand who Jesus is and what his significance is."-from the site
    Comments?


    Man, I've spent hours on this post, at the very least it shows that there is considerable dispute about these conttradictions and I feel the evidence shows there are contradictions. We can not say there is proof positve that there is no conflicting data. The data is there and then we have attempts to "prove" or rationalize away what is plain to see.
    But, it seems the more research we make into the subject, the more the contradictions hold up.
    Do some research, I can't do it all guys.

    I see statements made and no back-up.

    Shall we look at more inconsistencies or stop here and move on to other problems, like one of the historical statements made previously?

    Pick one, or reply to what I've posted here.
     
  13. Alsharad

    Alsharad Member

    Here are two detailed explanations to the "contradiction" regarding the geneologies:

    http://www.carm.org/diff/2geneologies.htm (which I borrowed a bit from earlier)

    http://www.christian-thinktank.com/fabprof4.html

    I don't want to take anything out of context, so please just read everything on the pages I listed.

    Now, on to the Quirinius question:
    Maegain I noticed that on the Blue Butler website that you posted several times in the article it is stated that "it is unlikely that etc." as contradicting evidence (i.e. "a Roman census in his territory is highly unlikely to have taken place"). I must point out however that when dealing with historical documents, you cannot reason like this. Here is a good quote:

    "evidence must always be affirmative. Negative evidence is a contradiction in terms--it is no evidence at all. The nonexistence of an object [read: "worldwide decree"] is established not by nonexistent evidence [read: "we can't find the decree so far] but by affirmative evidence of the fact that it did not, or could not exist [e.g. a document that says it did not happen]"

    The entire article from which I pulled the quote can be found here: http://www.christian-thinktank.com/quirinius.html

    Please read it, it answers the objection regarding Quirinius.
     
  14. Brocktoon

    Brocktoon Banned

    Yowsers! My head is hurting from so many 'begats' and possible explanations lol!

    I had always understood these were two different geneologies, one from Mary and the other Joseph.
    It was also my understanding that geneologies in Jewish culture did go from both sides (paternal/fraternal).

    The best article I have written on this was found at
    http://members.aol.com/twarren13/birth2.html

    Admittedly its a confusing topic from our cultural standpoint and maybe at worst has 'problems' in what we 'dont know'.
    I fail to see any actual 'contradiction' in the logical sense?
     
  15. Jatom

    Jatom Member

    Let me very briefly answer your genealogy 'problem'

    Your first objection is that the genealogies of Matt and Luke are different and that there is therefore a problem. I however hold that there is no problem, and within their ANE cultural context, this is completely normal. This is because geologies could be linear, segmented (naming siblings and even descendants of siblings), or a mixture of the two [1] (Honor, Patronage, Kinship & Purity, 159). There is no reason to believe that all cases of a person's cited genealogy must list the exact same people. Only within the context of our own society would this be a necessity; however, given that this was not written yesterday, I simply see no problem with it.

    You second objection is:

    In addition, you have not answered the question of why we trace any linage through Joseph at all. Biological birth has no bearing!? So bloodlines are meaningless? Why not trace the genealogy through Mary, period?

    Again, the Bible was not written yesterday, the ancients would have concept of modern biology, and a person's family status was not based solely upon his or hers genes [2]. For example, a freed slave's master was recognized as his legal father under Roman law (Greco-Roman World of the New Testament Era, 239). What this means is that John or Jane Doe could be under the male headship of Jatom without actually being from the same “bloodline.” Any children either of them had would also be considered under Jatom. In the situation of Jesus, Joseph and Mary married, Jesus was their Child, and Joseph was the legal father. Tracing Jesus' lineage through Joseph's royal line, and thus elevating His social status, would be an accepted practice.
    ______________________
    1. For example of a linear genealogy see Genesis 5, for segmented see Genesis 10, and for a mixture of the two see Genesis 11:10-30.
    2. See http://www.christian-thinktank.com/fabprof4.html
     
  16. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    J,

    I must still insist on pressing the Mary line:
    Did you check out the Catholic site I listed?

    See below for excerpts:
    THE MINISTRY OF DISCIPLES NOW

    OUR MISSION

    Disciples Now is a web-based ministry for youth focused on the traditions, life, and mission of the Catholic faith community. As a informational resource, Disciples Now provides opportunities to learn, to discuss, and to celebrate the challenges of discipleship in the context of daily life.

    From the site:
    One answer is: both lists are family records, but Matthew is giving us Joseph's record, and Luke is giving us Mary's. But that answer goes against the text - Luke makes it clear that he is tracing Jesus' descent through Joseph. Nor does it fit with what we know of ancient middle eastern peoples. A genealogy traced through the mother would not have been normal at that time and place in history.

    My underline.
    So, at least the one Catholic view is not the same as yours. I will repeat it: Luke makes it clear that he is tracing Jesus' descent through Joseph. Nor does it fit with what we know of ancient middle eastern peoples. A genealogy traced through the mother would not have been normal at that time and place in history.



    Onward:
    Please go here next: http://www.usbible.com/GospelFictions/jesus_genealogy.htm
    Luke

    ...they rationalize that Luke’s genealogy is through Mary. Assuming that to be true—which they are not—there are other reasons why such a rationale is impossible.

    1. With the phrase “as was supposed,” Luke left some doubt that Jesus was the son of Joseph. The most plausible interpretation was in recognition of divine conception. The apologist argument is that Mary’s connection to David skips over Joseph. This implies that both Matthew and Luke were wrong to include Joseph’s name.

    23Jesus, when he began his ministry, was about thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli, (Luke 3:23)

    2. Both Matthew and Luke agree that Joseph is the father of Jesus. If Mary is the daughter of Heli, then Joseph is the son. That makes them brother and sister with two fathers or something like that.

    3. Anticipating this brother sister connection, the apologists argue that Joseph is the actual son of Jacob and the legal son of Heli. Okay, so then they are half related through bloodlines. Then Jesus’ brothers and sisters were born out of incest.

    4. Elsewhere, according to Luke, Jesus was recognized as the son of Joseph.

    22And all spoke well of him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth; and they said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” ((Luke 4:22)

    5. As mentioned above, there is no record of Nathan’s descendants.

    6. Disagreements between Luke and 1 Chronicles are noted in parenthesis.

    7. The names from Heli through to Zerubbabel do not come from Old Testament canon. As mentioned above, there were no descendants after Zerubbabel.

    8. Jewish law mandates that the name be carried through the father. If a woman is widowed without a son, she is to marry her ex-husband’s brother. Every genealogy in the OT is carried through male descendants. To suggest that the lineage goes through Mary means that Luke stuck with the male tradition, then jumped to the female side. This is silly.

    5“If brothers dwell together, and one of them dies and has no son, the wife of the dead shall not be married outside the family to a stranger; her husband’s brother shall go in to her, and take her as his wife, and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her.
    6And the first son whom she bears shall succeed to the name of his brother who is dead, that his name may not be blotted out of Israel. (Deut. 25:5-6)


    9. The Catholic Encyclopedia argues that as long as they come up with possibilities, their opponents have no right to deny the two gospels can’t be harmonized. Well there is one fact they can’t get around. There were no more descendants after Zerubbabel.

    Please see the site for the complete story which show that , in any event the geneology can not be traced from either side.
     
  17. Jatom

    Jatom Member

    J,

    I must still insist on pressing the Mary line:

    Press away!

    Did you check out the Catholic site I listed?

    Sure did.

    My underline.
    So, at least the one Catholic view is not the same as yours. I will repeat it: Luke makes it clear that he is tracing Jesus' descent through Joseph. Nor does it fit with what we know of ancient middle eastern peoples. A genealogy traced through the mother would not have been normal at that time and place in history.

    When did I ever say that Luke was tracing Jesus lineage through Mary? All I said was:

    Your first objection is that the genealogies of Matt and Luke are different and that there is therefore a problem. I however hold that there is no problem, and within their ANE cultural context, this is completely normal. This is because geologies could be linear, segmented (naming siblings and even descendants of siblings), or a mixture of the two [1] (Honor, Patronage, Kinship & Purity, 159). There is no reason to believe that all cases of a person's cited genealogy must list the exact same people. Only within the context of our own society would this be a necessity; however, given that this was not written yesterday, I simply see no problem with it.

    One most understand that genealogies served a specific purpose, and it was completely possible for one to have different cited genealogies (see note 1 in previous post) serving different purposes. For example Matthew's purpose is to trace Jesus royal line and thus prove to the Jewish mind that He is the promised messiah, hence Matthew 1:1:

    The record of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham:

    1. With the phrase "as was supposed," Luke left some doubt that Jesus was the son of Joseph. The most plausible interpretation was in recognition of divine conception. The apologist argument is that Mary’s connection to David skips over Joseph. This implies that both Matthew and Luke were wrong to include Joseph’s name.

    The phase "as was supposed" Luke 3:23 and Matthew's broken pattern--"of Mary was Jesus begotten" instead of "Joseph begot Jesus" (Matthew 1:16)-- are done because both authors are aware of the virgin birth.

    2. Both Matthew and Luke agree that Joseph is the father of Jesus. If Mary is the daughter of Heli, then Joseph is the son. That makes them brother and sister with two fathers or something like that.

    Yes, this was a part of the ANE culture, in the event that Eli had no sons, Joseph would become a legal son upon marriage to Mary (See Numbers 27:1-11) receiving the inherent.

    3. Anticipating this brother sister connection, the apologists argue that Joseph is the actual son of Jacob and the legal son of Heli. Okay, so then they are half related through bloodlines. Then Jesus’ brothers and sisters were born out of incest.

    This is a bit irresponsible on the part author. Recognizing that this was purely a legal matter, he still opts claim that they were somehow related through bloodlines, and even compares this to incest?! As mentioned above, if Eli had no sons, Joseph would be the legal inheritor of Eli's inheritance, and therefore legally his son upon marriage into the family (either to Mary or her sister). This was their culture.

    4. Elsewhere, according to Luke, Jesus was recognized as the son of Joseph.

    OK??? I don't see how this is a problem

    5. As mentioned above, there is no record of Nathan’s descendants.

    This is a nitpick, Nathan's descendant is mentioned in Luke.

    6. Disagreements between Luke and 1 Chronicles are noted in parenthesis.

    See the link provided in Alsharad and my previous posts.

    7. The names from Heli through to Zerubbabel do not come from Old Testament canon. As mentioned above, there were no descendants after Zerubbabel.

    See same link mentioned above.

    8. Jewish law mandates that the name be carried through the father. If a woman is widowed without a son, she is to marry her ex-husband’s brother. Every genealogy in the OT is carried through male descendants. To suggest that the lineage goes through Mary means that Luke stuck with the male tradition, then jumped to the female side. This is silly.

    It's also silly not to recognize that this one situation is different from ever other--the Son had no human father!--The author omits this. Luke was simply dealing resourcefully with the dilemma that arose from this virgin birth. As the above quote mentions linage was not to be traced through a man’s mother, but through his father. Because of Jesus had no physical father. Luke opts to trace his decent through his nearest male relative, His maternal grandfather who was apparently Eli Luke 3:23.

    9. The Catholic Encyclopedia <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06410a.htm> argues that as long as they come up with possibilities, their opponents have no right to deny the two gospels can’t be harmonized. Well there is one fact they can’t get around. There were no more descendants after Zerubbabel

    This is not my position so I see no relevance here. A far better method is to examine the the possibilities, and determine which is the more reasonable answer. That the genealogies were "forgeries" just doesn't seem reasonable to me, at least not with any of the arguments I've seen so far. As far as the article goes the author make some mistakes (at least I think). For example, he seems to think that Cain was born through divine conception:

    Divine conception heralded two other firsts. God provided the seed for the first son born of a human mother, who turned out to be a murderer.

    This is derived from

    Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, "I have gotten a man with the help of the LORD."

    Apparently he doesn't know (or maybe he does?) that "knew" yada used here is an euphemism for sexual relations (see a more modern or dynamic translation). In other words Adam had sex with Eve and Cain was the result, and this the authors labels as "Divine conception," of the same type that happened with Mary ("Divine conception heralded two other first..."). He goes on to make a similar mistake with Abraham stating that God provided the seed. At any rate, he practices a very questionable hermeneutic method. ...but than again, according to him I'm a dishonest and narrow minded credulous Christian who believes whatever nonsense I can contrive!
     
  18. Brocktoon

    Brocktoon Banned

    Im not standing here cheering for any 'side' but I just want to say thanks to Jatom for a clear and sensible explanation.
    Occams Razor wins the day for me.
    I see no problems with this anymore and I think the 'key' is understanding that the authors were aware of the Virgin birth and were indeed being resourceful and using the 'default' human lineages.

    Im just glad I didnt have to figure that one out for myself.. ughh.. Geneologies.

    Let me compliment MEagain on this ... I think your concern was well thought out and presented in a reponsible way with many valid questions.
    That is very refreshing when it comes to biblical criticisms!
     
  19. Spiritforces

    Spiritforces Member

    I agree so much with Chiefcowpie...


    It's easy do resrect and to announce to rebirth before the death, really easy ;)

    Some others have done it as he said

    Wishes
     
  20. Spiritforces

    Spiritforces Member

    To prove a reincarnation some masters gave many details, like the place and the time...
     

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