Claims that Jesus never existed

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by xdisciplex, Jun 30, 2006.

  1. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    0
    This stuff really upsets me. Today I was looking through the televison program and saw that there's a documentary coming about Jesus and it said that church historians had made new discoveries and that Jesus never really existed. :mad:

    And a few minutes ago I was browsing a forum and found a discussion about this topic and somebody wrote this here. What do you think about it? Unfortunately I cannot say much about it cause I don't know anything about history. :(

     
  2. webdog

    webdog
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Messages:
    24,691
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is ignorance at it's worst. Historical documents (even from those who denied Christ's deity) prove He existed.
     
  3. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    0
    Which ones?

    I heard that even unbelieving historians do not doubt that Jesus existed, but if it's so clear then why do people still claim that he did not exist?
    And this whole jewish war thing is something I never thought about.
    Christians always speak of all these eyewitnesses which saw everything and could have spoken out against the gospels if they had been wrong, but if most of the people died in this war then there also were not many eyewitnesses left. :confused:

    I'm really so tired of this whole stuff. Always having to deal with all these atheist attacks. It's impossible to be an expert at all these things and to know everything. :tear:
     
  4. webdog

    webdog
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Messages:
    24,691
    Likes Received:
    0
    #4 webdog, Jun 30, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2006
  5. Jim1999

    Jim1999
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    15,460
    Likes Received:
    0
    Historically, there are many questions, just as there were many men named Jesus. There are some resident facts about the death of Jesus of Nazareth, but not as much physical fact as we would wish.

    We have the scriptures to give us the account of Christ, and we have the attestation of the Jewish historian, Josephus, who wrote about the existence of Jesus of Nazareth. Some of the facts differ to what expect of Jesus, according to scripture, but he does write about His existence.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    0
    This means we only have this 1 guy Josephus and that's all? :confused:

    What about Paul? Was he not a historical figure? Or what about the apostles being killed for their faith do we have any historical recordings of these things? I mean how do we know that christianity really started right after Jesus rose? How do we know that the disciples started with their movement right away and that christianity was not "invented" much later like this unbeliever claims? How do we know all these things? Is there even a way to know it for sure? :confused:
    Christians often use this eyewitness arguments and that there were also many eyewitnesses which were not supporting christianity and they could have spoken out against the gospel if it has not been accurate but all these eyewitnesses are also only mentioned in the bible. I mean if I write a book about something which I claimed happened in 2006 and in this book I also mention hundreds of eyewitnesses which saw that what I am describing is true and then I also mention that if they don't believe me they shall simply ask the eyewitnesses. And then 400 years later somebody finds this book then he reads it and reads that I wrote down that there were many eyewitnesses which could testify that what I describe is correct and then maybe he will think that what I wrote about is true but none of it is true. Where exactly is the difference between the gospels and my example?
     
  7. Joseph M. Smith

    Joseph M. Smith
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    0
    The discussion in the article you quoted from is what logicians call an "argumentum e silentio". That is, an argument from silence, meaning that the absence of something is supposed to prove the presence of something else. If my physician finds no malignancy in one part of my body, then the argumentum e silentio jumps to the conclusion that there is no malignancy anywhere in my body. But that's not really logical.

    So the absence of discussion about Jesus proves nothing other than apparently -- APPARENTLY -- He was not taken very seriously by anyone other than those mentioned in the Gospels. Their failure to report on Him means that they never noticed much going on, or discounted it. But can one not argue that if the Gospels were fabrications, there would have been someone to dispute them and to say, "This stuff never happened, because I was in Jerusalem, or I was a guard in Pilate's palace, etc. and I know better." But we have no such countervailing evidence.

    You mention Paul, and Paul bases his status as an apostle on being an eyewitness of the resurrected Christ, though "as one born out of due time". (That is, he had the Damascus Road experience but did not walk the streets of Galilee with Jesus .. probably never met Him in the flesh). Does that explain why Paul says so little about the actual incarnate life of Jesus and/or about Jesus' teaching? That is, is Paul being careful not to claim to be more of an eyewitness than is legitimate, given his chronology?

    I should add that there are brief mentions of the Christian movement in other ancient Roman historians -- Suetonius comes to mind. Although there is nothing definitive there in terms of confirming the details of Jesus' life, these ancient historians do certify that something happened that spawned a new movement. And so far as I know, their statements were never refuted.
     
  8. genesis12

    genesis12
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2005
    Messages:
    799
    Likes Received:
    1
    You're really fed up with all that stuff? Then stop looking for it on the internet, listening to it on the radio, reading books about it (like the Da Vinci Code, the gospel of Judas), and whatever else you get into. I answered something similar once before. Here's a summary of it:

    The NT was canonized in the 1st century a.d. The apostles were still alive ~ they knew what was correct, what was a distortion, what was a counterfeit. Read these references: Luke 1:2; Acts 1:21-22; 1 John 2:3; John 14:25-26; 2 Peter 1:16-19. All 27 books of the NT were accepted by the brethren by the end of the 1st century. That didn't just happen. The various churches communicated about the matter; the Holy Spirit directed their oral and written conversations. Within one generation, the NT was proclaimed accurate. It is recorded that if all the letters going back and forth between the churches of that day were assembled, they would contain the whole of NT scripture in its earliest form. I don't need those letters to be convinced that what we have is sufficient ~~ but I'd love to read them all.
    :thumbs:
     
  9. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    0
    This guy argues that either nobody who was in Jerusalem was still alive or saw the gospels or that if somebody who was alive and was confronted with them cared enough about it to write a refutation or he also says that most of the people can the couldn't write. These are simply assumptions but the problem refusing them. I mean how am I supposed to know how many eyewitnesses survived the jewish war and how many lived and saw the gospels and how many people could write back then and so on.... :confused:

    @ genesis

    Do you think I am looking for this stuff? Heck no!
    I was reading the TV program when I saw this stuff for this Jesus "documentary" and when I read it I already felt sick and then I went online and looked for answers on a christian forums and then came across this stuff which an atheist wrote at a christian forum. I was in no way looking for something which would confuse me. I'm not dumb. But the problem is that in these times it is absolutely impossible to simply put blinders on and to not hear or see this stuff, it is impossible. If I tried to avoid all of this then I might feel better but what would happen if I'm exposed to this stuff one day and then it'll hit me even harder. It's not possible to live in a bubble as a christian even though it would be much more easy and comfortable.
     
  10. Marcia

    Marcia
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Messages:
    11,139
    Likes Received:
    0
    xdisciplex, why do you watch this junk? You admitted already that you didn't read the Bible as much as you should. Turn off the TV and read the Bible, instead. There is so much anti-Christian stuff out there, you could drown in it. Satan hates Jesus, he hates the Bible, and he hates the church. People who don't want to admit sin or don't want to believe in a God who judges love to foment doubt, and they build elaborate arguments against Christianity. It's the craftiness of Satan mixed with the wisdom of the world. Many of these people are academics and scholars - their human wisdom has blinded them to their need for a Savior.

    Here are some links re extra-biblical evidence for the historical Jesus:
    http://www.probe.org/content/view/18/77/

    http://www.westarkchurchofchrist.org/library/extrabiblical.htm

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

    Now, xdisciplex, turn off the TV or internet or whatever, and read these!! Please! :thumbs:
     
  11. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks Marcia, but I did not watch this! I only read what the TV program said about it, it was only a few sentences.
     
  12. Rooselk

    Rooselk
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    Messages:
    159
    Likes Received:
    0
    xdisciplex: There are many scholarly books that answer the questions you have raised. But, as you say, it's hard to read several books on every question. However, one book that does give a good overview on many of these questions is The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. In this book the author interviews scholars who are experts in ancient history, etc., and they deal with the very question you have asked (they also answer many other questions, such as the issue of the New Testament canon that you have raised in another thread). Strobel's book is quite good and I highly recommend it.
     
  13. Marcia

    Marcia
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Messages:
    11,139
    Likes Received:
    0
    Then why are you so influenced by a mere description of a TV show you never saw? You need grounding in the Word, which is what I keep telling you.

    Look at those links I gave you, and also get Lee Strobel's book Case for Christ as Rooselk suggested. :thumbs:
     
  14. El_Guero

    El_Guero
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,714
    Likes Received:
    0
    If Jesus is not your Savior - you want to believe He did not exist, because fear of hellfire is real.
     
  15. LeBuick

    LeBuick
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2006
    Messages:
    11,537
    Likes Received:
    0
    I never heard this version before, you have a link that backs this up? Book?

    I have heard and read different variations of when the NT was cononized. The common one I accept is in the 3rd century AD. Never heard 1st century and by the Apostles.
     
  16. genesis12

    genesis12
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2005
    Messages:
    799
    Likes Received:
    1
    The Bible. See the scripture references in my post.

    Christian groups or churches typically met in the homes of individual believers, much like home or cell churches or house meetings today, although those who held on to Jewish tradition continued to meet in the local synagogue. Groups sprang up everywhere, producing hundreds of letters and "gospels," many of them spurious, some for Paul, others against him, but nonetheless indicating an incredible level of activity in the first century. There were three main groups: Jewish Christians, Pauline Christians, and Gnostic Christians. Within each of these there were many groups, sub-groups, and groupings. At one point in the first century 80 "gospels" and hundreds of epistles were being exchanged by the various groups. Hundreds were excluded as they made the rounds. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and the Pauline Epistles were looked to as foundational. Out of this process the existing NT books were identified. The Book of Acts catalogs some of the events of the first century.
     
  17. LeBuick

    LeBuick
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2006
    Messages:
    11,537
    Likes Received:
    0

    Not to be technical here but the Bible never speaks of being canonized. I asked where did you conclude the Bible was canonized in the 1st century by the Apostles?
     
  18. Jim1999

    Jim1999
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    15,460
    Likes Received:
    0
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]ALL CLAIMS OF JESUS DERIVE FROM HEARSAY ACCOUNTS[/FONT]
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]No one has the slightest physical evidence to support a historical Jesus; no artifacts, dwelling, works of carpentry, or self-written manuscripts. All claims about Jesus derive from writings of other people. There occurs no contemporary Roman record that shows Pontius Pilate executing a man named Jesus. Devastating to historians, there occurs not a single contemporary writing that mentions Jesus. All documents about Jesus got written well after the life of the alleged Jesus from either: unknown authors, people who had never met an earthly Jesus, or from fraudulent, mythical or allegorical writings. Although one can argue that many of these writings come from fraud or interpolations, I will use the information and dates to show that even if these sources did not come from interpolations, they could still not serve as reliable evidence for a historical Jesus, simply because all sources derive from hearsay accounts.[/FONT]
    (Taken from an essay...sorry, I forgot to get the name)
    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    This is the general secular response we get when it comes to establishing the historical fact of Jesus. We, as believers, are essentially proving existence from testimony within the source itself, which, the author, says, it not proof at all.

    There are some classic responses. (1) If the disciples of the day lied about their testimony, surely someone would expose this before too long.
    (2) 11 apostles died for their beliefs. It is inconceivable that 11 men would give their lives for a lie. The 12th lived in exile and some think that he also gave his life for his beliefs.
    (3) We have the testimony of scriptures. A set of books that have stood the test of time, criticism and scrutiny of the highest academic order. We may question portions of the Bible, but overall it bears witness to itself.

    (4) The changed life. No other document has brought about a complete change in life. Some writings may affect what we think about given topics, but no other document has effected a "conversion" experience that defies human thought.

    Just more food for thought.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     

Share This Page

Loading...