Biblical Texts: explication & discussion

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xris
 
Reply Tue 12 May, 2009 08:22 am
@Alan McDougall,
I see the core message of christianity as gift to mankind but as i am an agnostic i dont see the messenger as anything like the gospel stories.
There could well be a man called Jesus who brought a revolutionary message of love and mercy.He made an impact and an impression that grew with his legend.He by mans natural attention grew into a god and resembles the other gods men worshipped.Like all legends the real message remained but the stories grew and the exaggerations grew with them.Jesus became a force that had to be recognised by the powerful.He was then officially recognised and his biography written by those who wished to established his credentials.
The message may well be gods but study the message not the messenger.The man is a distant intelligent , well advanced charismatic teacher, a fisher of men and his stories are only a reflection of his true identity.Nit pick if you must but it does not change a damned thing about the message.
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Tue 12 May, 2009 08:33 am
@Alan McDougall,
You are actually touching on a very important point there, Alan. (Is it ok if I use the shortened form?) What you are seeing is the description/prescription that the Jewish religious belief-system have provided of one being, a god whose name was YHWH--Yahweh, or Yahovah (Jehovah).

It is for this reason, that that model can be tested against the passage of time and emiprical knowledge of human kind, up to now, regarding (especially) the natural universe. By extension, that is how we can test that database; the Bible.

If you were to go back and check the opening of chapter 31 in Numbers, you'd see that the act described there had been at the basic command of Yahwah--Moses simply being the agent through which it had been coordinated.

In post number 14, you brought up the concept of 'the condemnation to eternal hell is that penned by god . . . .' Actually (and if need be I can address that later on down the road) that is not penned anywhere really. The concept of 'condemnation to eternal hell' came later, and was forced from an interpretation to make it fit.

So as Alan had highlighted in post #20, it might be that there is inspiration...might, we have to suspend conclusion until we check further. (of course I am proceeding in this thread in that format, while having already done a fair amount of the search)

Other additional points, quickly, in the Christian canonical documents which are used by some, at times, to support the notion of the instruments' having been inspired are:

[indent] 2 Peter 1:19~21; 1 Peter 1:12, 23~25; 2 Tim 2:15; Heb 4:12; 1 Thes 2:13; 1 Cor 14:37; 2:13 (note reference for 'we'); Rom 15:4; Jn 14:25, 26; 15: 26; 16:13, 14; 17:17; and a couple or so in Revelation.
[/indent]

Only the passages in Revelation are specific in wording and directed to the containing instrument. By careful examination of the immediate and overall context of each document, we can see that none of these reflect any clear indication on behalf of the author (other than Rev) that the document which they appear in were known by the author to have been supernaturally superentended.①

Next, we can check for examples to the contrary (such expressions of human involvement and opinions), and check for non-natural claims (such as geographical errors, or historical errors).



① If anyone wishes to look into the details of any of these further, please do bring them up, and I'll join in.

---------- Post added at 11:49 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:33 PM ----------

I just caught your post, xris, as I had been in posting process at the time, and didn't know about it.

I would like to stress (and do hope it would help some, in some way) that while we can be sure there had been any number of Yeshuas back in that cultural, historical setting, we cannot be so sure of the specifics of the 'general message' of that historical personage. The beauty of the gospel accounts can be said to fall in their articulation of natural 'laws' (if you will, such as reciprocation, human social building measures in the exercise of agape, etc.).

If one were to hold that those documents had been inspired by a suprenatural source, that source would be YHWH (or a slightly later Christian model). We can test that through the documents--I argue. I would say, additionally, that we, in a way of seeing it, can change the message (relative to what the belief-systems of today say) by understanding the detail of, and related to, it.

I have mentioned it earlier, but I call myself a non-theist agnostic.
 
click here
 
Reply Wed 13 May, 2009 05:30 am
@KaseiJin,
I'm going to guess that you are probably one of the most 'qualified' individuals for participating in this discussion on the forum, if not the most 'qualified'

Nonetheless I'm happy to participate when I can.

Even studying the oldest texts that we have we still don't have a single original autograph. We would hope though that the texts we have are free from transcribal error though we can not be 100% sure we can only make assumptions.

Are you open to discussing other things in the Bible? Maybe so called "errors".

I personally would like to work through the differences in the genealogy listed by Matthew (Ch.1) in relation to Luke (Ch. 3). I think in this case it is very important to look at the oldest texts possible as current translations can be confusing.

If you are interested I can talk about what I already have learned through research or if you'd rather stay on the Biblical inspiration topic then we could.
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Wed 13 May, 2009 08:22 am
@KaseiJin,
A quickie here, as I have to get up early tomorrow, and have been kind of burning the midnight oil over the past three or four days--please accept my apologies.

You have actually gotten the correct idea of the process (in my reasoned opinion) because in the activity of investigating this matter of supernatural superintendence one will have to investigate and discuss, cross-reference and examine, a good number of areas. One of those will be the matter of errors--scribal error (to the degree that it can be determined to be so), historical error, and natural error. I do plan on discussing some, and see no real reason not to start about now.

One side of this is that at times, some who are not so accustomed to such discussion tend to think it can be done in a few pages of internet forum-like medium. I very seriously doubt that such could be done. Also, I would think that a degree of organization in argument development is usually helpful.

I have heard of and have read a little, in the past, on the genelogical problem, and do have the recensions with full aparatus, but am not so clear on all the possible points. Please do go ahead and present what you do have, and I'll check out, and put what I can on that particular point-in-case.
 
Alan McDougall
 
Reply Wed 13 May, 2009 08:52 pm
@KaseiJin,
KaseiJin wrote:
You are actually touching on a very important point there, Alan. (Is it ok if I use the shortened form?) What you are seeing is the description/prescription that the Jewish religious belief-system have provided of one being, a god whose name was YHWH--Yahweh, or Yahovah (Jehovah).

It is for this reason, that that model can be tested against the passage of time and emiprical knowledge of human kind, up to now, regarding (especially) the natural universe. By extension, that is how we can test that database; the Bible.

If you were to go back and check the opening of chapter 31 in Numbers, you'd see that the act described there had been at the basic command of Yahwah--Moses simply being the agent through which it had been coordinated.

In post number 14, you brought up the concept of 'the condemnation to eternal hell is that penned by god . . . .' Actually (and if need be I can address that later on down the road) that is not penned anywhere really. The concept of 'condemnation to eternal hell' came later, and was forced from an interpretation to make it fit.

So as Alan had highlighted in post #20, it might be that there is inspiration...might, we have to suspend conclusion until we check further. (of course I am proceeding in this thread in that format, while having already done a fair amount of the search)

Other additional points, quickly, in the Christian canonical documents which are used by some, at times, to support the notion of the instruments' having been inspired are: [INDENT] 2 Peter 1:19~21; 1 Peter 1:12, 23~25; 2 Tim 2:15; Heb 4:12; 1 Thes 2:13; 1 Cor 14:37; 2:13 (note reference for 'we'); Rom 15:4; Jn 14:25, 26; 15: 26; 16:13, 14; 17:17; and a couple or so in Revelation.
[/INDENT]Only the passages in Revelation are specific in wording and directed to the containing instrument. By careful examination of the immediate and overall context of each document, we can see that none of these reflect any clear indication on behalf of the author (other than Rev) that the document which they appear in were known by the author to have been supernaturally superentended.①

Next, we can check for examples to the contrary (such expressions of human involvement and opinions), and check for non-natural claims (such as geographical errors, or historical errors).



① If anyone wishes to look into the details of any of these further, please do bring them up, and I'll join in.

---------- Post added at 11:49 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:33 PM ----------

I just caught your post, xris, as I had been in posting process at the time, and didn't know about it.

I would like to stress (and do hope it would help some, in some way) that while we can be sure there had been any number of Yeshuas back in that cultural, historical setting, we cannot be so sure of the specifics of the 'general message' of that historical personage. The beauty of the gospel accounts can be said to fall in their articulation of natural 'laws' (if you will, such as reciprocation, human social building measures in the exercise of agape, etc.).

If one were to hold that those documents had been inspired by a suprenatural source, that source would be YHWH (or a slightly later Christian model). We can test that through the documents--I argue. I would say, additionally, that we, in a way of seeing it, can change the message (relative to what the belief-systems of today say) by understanding the detail of, and related to, it.

I have mentioned it earlier, but I call myself a non-theist agnostic.


I must commend you on becoming a great contributor to this great forum Smile

God has given us a freewill , but sometimes, maybe in desperation he tries to get his proverbial nose in from time to time to keep us from destroying each other

If we are truly intellectual sentient beings, then we should be able to shift through the inaccuracy of so-called scripture and extract the beautiful truths that are contained in these books

I do not only refer to Hebrew, Islam and Christian scriptures by that I include all the great scriptural writings of Buddhism, and Hindu Bagatavita?(spelling wrong) etc

Oh By the way Off topic I have a nephew living in Japan, married to a Japanese lady Glen McDougall is his name
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Thu 14 May, 2009 03:51 am
@KaseiJin,
Thanks for the compliment, Alan. Yes, I have a copy of the Mahabharata in my study, and used to have a real nice interlinear (Sanskrit/English) of the Bhavadagita. I also had a translation of some of the Rig Vedas (almost all, as I recall) and the Ramayana. Alas, things do get lost in moving between oceans a couple of times.

Regarding beautiful truths, I feel we can find them because they are there, and as you have kind of hinted at, we don't really need any particular religious belief-system texts. However, in this thread, we'd best be sticking to the biblical texts (as defined earlier). I'll try to get back here by Saturday night, at the latest.
 
Alan McDougall
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 12:57 am
@KaseiJin,
KaseiJin wrote:
Thanks for the compliment, Alan. Yes, I have a copy of the Mahabharata in my study, and used to have a real nice interlinear (Sanskrit/English) of the Bhavadagita. I also had a translation of some of the Rig Vedas (almost all, as I recall) and the Ramayana. Alas, things do get lost in moving between oceans a couple of times.

Regarding beautiful truths, I feel we can find them because they are there, and as you have kind of hinted at, we don't really need any particular religious belief-system texts. However, in this thread, we'd best be sticking to the biblical texts (as defined earlier). I'll try to get back here by Saturday night, at the latest.


Thank you as well Smile just to add a little during daily life we are forced to shift through countless events, images and thoughts comments directed at us all the time. We mostly banish what we do not like and embrace what we do

I know being fallible we sometimes accept nonsense into our lives at great cost.......................?

All I was suggesting in this thread we do the same with the Bible, after all we have more time to read it careful and decide as intelligent beings what is good and true and what is redundant and wrong from those unfortunately flawed texts
 
xris
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 05:28 am
@Alan McDougall,
How do you decide what is not fabricated?What evidence is there for any historical reference for you to compare? Is it the value of the message by its authority or by its moral teaching?
If you read the story of King Arthur would you accept the script as correct but needs refining or would you seek other historical evidence to collaborate the story.I dont know if i should admire such investigation or be bewildered by its necessity.
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 09:47 am
@xris,
xris;63158 wrote:
How do you decide what is not fabricated?


Hey, xris ! Taking the above as a general question (regardless of original intent or application--if I may) I'd argue that it takes as thorough a check of related documents of the same class, and a pragmatic methodology of thought as possible. The 'pragmatic methodology of thought' would require a test based on the aggregate of our best attested to understanding of nature and natural events. I also plan to go into some matters relating to this (as regards biblical literature) on the down the road, but will share a bit here, now, so as to offer an example.

[indent]" Here too is a miracle which Apollonius worked; a girl seemed to have died just in the hour of her marriage, and the bridegroom was following her bier lamenting as was natural, his marriage left unfulfilled, and the whole of Rome was mourning with him, for the maiden belonged to a consular family.

Apollonius then witnessing their grief, said, 'Put down the beir, for I will stay the tears that you are shedding for this maiden.' And with that he asked what her name was. The crowd accordingly thought that he was about to deliver such an oration as is commonly delivered as much to grace the funeral as to stir up lamentation; but he did nothing of the kind, but merely touching her and whispering in secret some spell over her, at once woke up the maiden from her seeming death; and the girl spoke out loud, and returned to her father's house, just as Alcestis did when she was brought back to life by Hercules. And the relations of the maiden wanted to present him with the sum of 150,000 sesterces, but he said that he would freely present the money to the young lady by way of dowry.

Now whether he detected some spark of life in her, which those who were nursing her had not noticed--for it is said that although it was raining at the time, a vapour went up from her face--or whether life was really extinct, and he restored it by the warmth of his touch, is a mysterious problem which neither myself nor those who were present could decide.
"
[indent]Philosratus, Life of Apollonius 4, 45 Loeb. 1,457-59 (c. 170 CE)[/indent][/indent]

This is from literature from the general age and culture of the time of the Christian document development. It is presented as a report, and effort appears to be made to hold conclusion on the reality of the details. Could it have been a case of clinical death? We can be very sure that cases of somatic death are final. Is this entire story fabricated? Here, based on the tone of presentation, we can only say that a misfortuned event of the sorts could have been possible in those days of lack of understanding--the maiden had not been dead somatically.

[indent]"But the highest reputation belongs to Asclepiades of Prusa, for having founded a new schooll, despised the envoys and overtures of King Mithridates, discovered a method of preparing medicated wine for the sick, brought back a man from burial and saved his life, but most of all for having made a wager with fortune that he should not be deemed a physician if he were in any way ill himself; and he won his bet, as he lost his life in extreme old age by falling down stairs."
[indent]Pliny the Elder (mid to late first century) Natural History 7, 37 Loeb. 2,589 [/indent][/indent]

So bringing folks back to life was to have been not such a big deal in those days? Actually, more people are 'brought back to life' today, I'd say; of course, that they have not died, is the key. Therefore, when we consider the case of Lazurus, as reported on by the authors of the work entitled according to John, we can understand that an event of some sort which may not have occurred as written verbatim, may have happened. What can be concluded as for fabrication (or possibly lack of knowledge?) would be some of the details . . . such as having been dead for three days, having been placed in a sealed tomb in the 'simi-embalmed state,' etc.

However, we'd still have to keep this on hold a little bit until we can get further results from other details. I'll keep on that track, as per thread purpose and intention. . . little by little.
 
xris
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 10:52 am
@KaseiJin,
KaseiJin wrote:
Hey, xris ! Taking the above as a general question (regardless of original intent or application--if I may) I'd argue that it takes as thorough a check of related documents of the same class, and a pragmatic methodology of thought as possible. The 'pragmatic methodology of thought' would require a test based on the aggregate of our best attested to understanding of nature and natural events. I also plan to go into some matters relating to this (as regards biblical literature) on the down the road, but will share a bit here, now, so as to offer an example.
[INDENT]" Here too is a miracle which Apollonius worked; a girl seemed to have died just in the hour of her marriage, and the bridegroom was following her bier lamenting as was natural, his marriage left unfulfilled, and the whole of Rome was mourning with him, for the maiden belonged to a consular family.

Apollonius then witnessing their grief, said, 'Put down the beir, for I will stay the tears that you are shedding for this maiden.' And with that he asked what her name was. The crowd accordingly thought that he was about to deliver such an oration as is commonly delivered as much to grace the funeral as to stir up lamentation; but he did nothing of the kind, but merely touching her and whispering in secret some spell over her, at once woke up the maiden from her seeming death; and the girl spoke out loud, and returned to her father's house, just as Alcestis did when she was brought back to life by Hercules. And the relations of the maiden wanted to present him with the sum of 150,000 sesterces, but he said that he would freely present the money to the young lady by way of dowry.

Now whether he detected some spark of life in her, which those who were nursing her had not noticed--for it is said that although it was raining at the time, a vapour went up from her face--or whether life was really extinct, and he restored it by the warmth of his touch, is a mysterious problem which neither myself nor those who were present could decide."
[INDENT]Philosratus, Life of Apollonius 4, 45 Loeb. 1,457-59 (c. 170 CE)
[/INDENT][/INDENT]This is from literature from the general age and culture of the time of the Christian document development. It is presented as a report, and effort appears to be made to hold conclusion on the reality of the details. Could it have been a case of clinical death? We can be very sure that cases of somatic death are final. Is this entire story fabricated? Here, based on the tone of presentation, we can only say that a misfortuned event of the sorts could have been possible in those days of lack of understanding--the maiden had not been dead somatically.
[INDENT]"But the highest reputation belongs to Asclepiades of Prusa, for having founded a new schooll, despised the envoys and overtures of King Mithridates, discovered a method of preparing medicated wine for the sick, brought back a man from burial and saved his life, but most of all for having made a wager with fortune that he should not be deemed a physician if he were in any way ill himself; and he won his bet, as he lost his life in extreme old age by falling down stairs."
[INDENT]Pliny the Elder (mid to late first century) Natural History 7, 37 Loeb. 2,589
[/INDENT][/INDENT]So bringing folks back to life was to have been not such a big deal in those days? Actually, more people are 'brought back to life' today, I'd say; of course, that they have not died, is the key. Therefore, when we consider the case of Lazurus, as reported on by the authors of the work entitled according to John, we can understand that an event of some sort which may not have occurred as written verbatim, may have happened. What can be concluded as for fabrication (or possibly lack of knowledge?) would be some of the details . . . such as having been dead for three days, having been placed in a sealed tomb in the 'simi-embalmed state,' etc.

However, we'd still have to keep this on hold a little bit until we can get further results from other details. I'll keep on that track, as per thread purpose and intention. . . little by little.
Thanks for your reply,I admire your detection but to what ends? Who wrote these accounts and what motivated them? I read a news item today, by the paper and the writer i see a bias .Could you ever see anything else other than the writer proposing a miracle, if thats what he would desire.Do you question the individual miracle or the possibility of any miracle?
The whole story of Christ is an invention by well meaning souls, in my opinion and if any one can prove otherwise ide be pleasantly surprised.Thanks Xris
 
click here
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 02:39 pm
@xris,
xris wrote:
Thanks for your reply,I admire your detection but to what ends? Who wrote these accounts and what motivated them? I read a news item today, by the paper and the writer i see a bias .Could you ever see anything else other than the writer proposing a miracle, if thats what he would desire.Do you question the individual miracle or the possibility of any miracle?
The whole story of Christ is an invention by well meaning souls, in my opinion and if any one can prove otherwise ide be pleasantly surprised.Thanks Xris



When you say the 'whole story' are you actually saying that you don't believe that Jesus was a historical figure? Miracles aside, are you rejecting that Jesus was an actual historical person?
 
xris
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 02:56 pm
@click here,
click here wrote:
When you say the 'whole story' are you actually saying that you don't believe that Jesus was a historical figure? Miracles aside, are you rejecting that Jesus was an actual historical person?
There is no historical evidence of the man they called Jesus.The gospels are secondhand stories by those who are believed to have known those who knew Jesus.I do believe there was a teacher who brought to our notice a better example of morality.The rest is invention and assimilation to older gods to make his message more profound.
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 06:43 pm
@xris,
Thanks for you response, and appreciation, there, xris. The objective of those quotes I'd given last night, was to show a methodolgy of thinking which can be used as a tool when looking at ancient texts critically as well as hermeneutically. The understood authors of those texts were given in the post, and these documents are historigraphic (thus of the same genre as the synaptics and the work Acts of the Disciples)

I'd like to point out, just as you seem to be concerned with, xris, that we must be careful to avoid bias when studying these things--which I would have hoped I had been clear enough about in my ending comments there. I hope my impression is in error, yet I do tend (note tend) to feel that you may have 'rush read' my post. In all due respect, concern, and care, I do hope I can encourage even greater degrees of conscientiousness, since, especially (as far as I can tell) we are on the same side of the 'debating table.'

Please, xris, do bear with us here, because (again as I had hoped to make clear enough) only taking one said event in the gospel accounts is not quite enough. We must take one at a time, and make as reasonable (=practical+logical), honest, and fair observation as possible on it at first inspection, and then shift it and refine that observation further after we have taken the whole lot, of all said events. In otherwords, it does take time.

CASE IN POINT

[indent] If I had ignored contextual and emotional setting, I could have mistaken your statement ' . . . I admire your detection but to what ends?' as your having been introspectively self-questioning the reason for your admiration of my detection. Or, I could have taken it to have been your asking 'what would follow' from the admiration of my detection that you had had. We must, therefore, take context into great consideration along with literary style (cultural leakage into texts, borrowing, emotion, kerygmatic-ness, etc.) to conclude historical possibilities. [/indent]

We should not be concerned about what is, or is not, a miracle, but rather what a textual account gives us, and (see ending of my most previous post) . . . You are most correct, xris, in your understanding that there is no further evidence beyond the Christian gospel narratives, letters from Paul and some others, and sub-apostolic church fathers, which gives evidence of that PARTICULAR character whom those documents called kristos, as having been a historical figure just exactly as those documents paint him to have been. (I hope this will be clearly enough done so as to carry my intended communication).

There is historical evidence provided by both Joshephus and Pliny (and a few other historians of the time) that there had been a group (or sect) seemingly following one person in Judea who had been executed. There is no reason to question the possibility that the instigator of that group, or sect, had carried the name Yeshua (or Joshua)--it was a fairly common name in that culture at that time. Anything beyond that we simply do not know. Therefore we can investigate the earliest (pre-sub apostolic) Christian documents to see if we can find a historical person. Firstly, however, it is useful to determine if we can see any reason to really believe any supernatural superintendence affecting those documents. This thread intends to kind of do both at the same time.

What you have just said, xris, namely, 'The gospels are secondhand stories by those who are believed to have known those who knew Jesus,' is mostly true. What I would ask, however, is how you would go about demonstrating that in a logical manner, with evidence, before an educated audience? (this is not a real question) The point being, I do hope you stay tuned to this thread, participate in it, and take notes so as to be able to spread the word--if you catch my drift.

From my opening post: My applications do arrive at the conclusion that these biblical texts by far, more so evidence nothing more than mere human activity, and in areas, imagination--a lack of supernatural superintendence--and as such are greatly overrated . . .
 
xris
 
Reply Sat 16 May, 2009 05:53 am
@KaseiJin,
I am at a loss to understand your intentions and can not see the reasoning for your attention.If you make the assumption that the scriptures have a certain validity and must be studied, you are compelled to state initially your reasons.
I have been led to believe that the Jesus story is a collection of stories embellished by followers of other gods to give Christianity credence.Mithra's the roman soldiers god is so like the Jesus myth it is extremely hard to avoid seeing the similarities.If you can understand my problem, its not the investigation of each and every event but the concept that inspired these reported events.
Would you say Lancelot's affair with Guinevere is worthy of investigation by such means or Robin Hoods relationship with friar Tuck as unholy.
Does the cross bear the Christ or the faith it is nailed to?Thanks Xris.
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Sat 16 May, 2009 08:48 am
@xris,
Good evening from the Japan Alps there, xris. Thanks for the candor, and I'll try to see if I can help out here.

As for my hopes (perhaps this way of wording it will help) for this thread, they are that I present evidence as clearly as possible and as exhaustively as possible to show that:

[indent] 1. For the far greater part, the Bible cannot stand the test of what would be reasonably be needed to see it as having been inspired in the sense pointed out at the beginning of this thread.

2. Those canonical texts, therefore, are no different from non-canonical texts nor other Greco-Roman historiographs/texts of a religious nature of that day.

3. The content of those texts, therefore, while being on a par with the great classical literature of the ancients, is no more of something to be taken as actual history than what can be deemed to be so of those other ancient texts. [/indent]

You see, xris, you have mentioned that you had learned that the Jesus story had been compiled by followers of other gods. Do you recall where such information had come from; the base source? How would you go about demonstrating the similarities of the Mithras cult with that of the early Christians? I'm pretty sure it'd take some academic endevour, you see. That is what I am also encouraging on and by this thread.

The stories which you have mentioned, are of a different genre, and do not have the history of acceptance as though they were actual and true accounts of history that we find in documents that go as far back as the late second/early third century, for those we would be investigating. Also, catagory is in opposition here, so there would actually be no comparison in regarding the methodologies of study that would be needed.

Just as we can find things that are valid in any of these texts, canonical or non-canonical, for example, that reciprocation is of benefit to social structure, that altrusim should be something that humankind should strive for, we can find things that are valid in other religious and non-religious texts and stories--for example, even, Robin Hood. So that's not the problem, I'd hope.

One question, I cannot follow the syntactical logic in the following phrase:

[indent]If you can understand my problem, its not the investigation of each and every event but the concept that inspired these reported events.[/indent]

Could you please expound on the idea behind this for me some more? Thanks ! (ps. I know my posts are long, I do hope you continue reading them with care.) :a-ok:
 
xris
 
Reply Sat 16 May, 2009 11:46 am
@KaseiJin,
From the freezing coast of Cornwall to the mountains of Japan...If we can extract a truth of moral value from any text it is of value to us all.Academic interest in scriptures or ancient text must have a purpose,well i would think so. If you dont consider the reasons underlying the text you fail to understand the details.We are being led to believe a certain event had authenticity and by so doing that event will support another event.One brick does not make a wall but if every brick is examined it does not give the reason why the wall was built.
My reference to Mithra's can give us a clue to how the whole myth became reality.Facts become enriched with the retelling and determined men mix facts with myths and old gods become new gods reborn with new vigour.I find it so pointed that the Vatican the most revered sight in Christendom is built over a Mithra's meeting cave.The structure of the church is built on the priesthood of Mithra's, they saw the new message and incorporated into their existing power structure.You are examining the details of a painting whose artist is not who it is assumed.Thanks Xris..
 
KaseiJin
 
Reply Sat 16 May, 2009 05:52 pm
@KaseiJin,
That was well put, xris, and I can of course, fully appreciate the analogy and the explanation of how religious belief-systems evolve. It is true that to more fully get a handle on reasons underlying an ancient text, one must firstly determine just what the originally penned text was--to the best of one's ability. This is textual criticism. Next, one must take into consideration cultural/history aspects that can be gleaned from the content and cross compare/test it with third party documents. After that, and along with that, one will have to keep the boundries of context within the text itself, and the cultural/historical context within with (as best can be determined) the text had originally been penned.

Yes, the Vatican is in a funny place, it could be said--I have no clue as to why, however, and couldn't build a solid argument any way. Also, regarding documents of the era that I am looking at (not going past the end of the second century here) as we see time passing from the days of Paul and his troupe, and John the elder, and then the group (probably led for some while by John of the original movement), we do see evidence of further hands in the exemplars that we do have. There are thousands of copies that have been cross compared and checked...it has been a tedious job.

Of course, it is most clear that the original movement had been Jewish, perhaps not unlike the Essene's in many ways, and likely somewhat like the Ebonites. This is before those who followed Paul and his troupe or Apollos (sp?) and his group in Rome gained the upper hand of those with James down in Jerusalem. Once Rome was the stay, even Ephesus (sp?) lost out. There is where we can see much of the alteration that you have highlighted in your above post.

As we proceed to look at some points, I do hope you'll take note, because you may be able to use them whenever you are discussing biblical textual matters with others who have not studied them that well, and yet who are trying to make claims which do ot jive with the evidences.
 
Alan McDougall
 
Reply Sat 16 May, 2009 11:48 pm
@xris,
xris wrote:
There is no historical evidence of the man they called Jesus.The gospels are secondhand stories by those who are believed to have known those who knew Jesus.I do believe there was a teacher who brought to our notice a better example of morality.The rest is invention and assimilation to older gods to make his message more profound.



But xris there is historical evidence in the writing of one "Josephus" a historian, who lived at the time of Jesus.

Do a web search you might find it interesting?

Much of the gospels are secondhand , but there are beautiful even eternal truths within them

"do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Love one another

Forgive those who hatefully use you
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 17 May, 2009 04:15 am
@Alan McDougall,
Alan McDougall wrote:
But xris there is historical evidence in the writing of one "Josephus" a historian, who lived at the time of Jesus.

Do a web search you might find it interesting?

Much of the gospels are secondhand , but there are beautiful even eternal truths within them

"do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

Love one another

Forgive those who hatefully use you
Im not doubting the value of the text Alan but you can see many of these repeated in other faiths.I may be wrong but all the gospels where written secondhand,not by his immediate followers.Ive never heard of this historical reference ill try searching for him.Thanks xris.
 
Alan McDougall
 
Reply Sun 17 May, 2009 08:08 am
@xris,
xris wrote:
Im not doubting the value of the text Alan but you can see many of these repeated in other faiths.I may be wrong but all the gospels where written secondhand,not by his immediate followers.Ive never heard of this historical reference ill try searching for him.Thanks xris.



It is really strange xris that the only historical reference to Jesus, near the time zone he lived in were from non Christian sources (outside of the New Testament writings)
I agree the very same truths found in the New Testament can be found in other scriptural writings. Love is considered as a universal truth by nearly all faiths. What confounds me is why anyone would fabricate a non existent being call him the Christ and equate to him all the beautiful truth supposedly spoken by this being that never existed?


It is or would be the most colossal joke and unspeakable fraud ever done in all the annals of human history if this was found out as a true deception the effect of human society would simple be too awful to contemplate. The collapse of the Christian churches in all the various guises


The Apostle Paul is said to be one of the greatest geniuses in all history, he was the Newton or Einstein of Christianity, I think it is he that really started what we refer to as Christianity


The martyring and slaughter of Christian in the time of Nero in places such as the Coliseum are real historical events, why the heck die for the sake of a entity that never existed of in the time of Nero

There are predictions about Jesus in the Old Testament or Hebrew Scriptures,


Psalm 22 (written a thousand years before the crucifixion) Only excerpts



"My God my God why hast thou forsaken me" (This happened exactly as prophesied)



"I am poured out like water and my bones out of joint; my tongue cleaves to my jaws" (remember Jesus said I thirst on the cross) Again an exact true prophecy



For evil dogs surround me they have "pierced my hands and my feet"


"They part my garments among them and cast lots upon my vesture"


"Both happened exactly like that, if you remember your Sunday school teaching of the crucification"



Isaiah 9 verse5and 6 (900 years before Jesus)


For unto us a child is born unto us a son is given and the government shall be upon his shoulders and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace


And when his government comes it will never end


Isaiah 52 verse 14


And many were astonished at him, his vesture (or face) was marred more than any man (remember they brutalized him, ripping off his beard etc) and his face had no form (beaten to a pulp)


Isaiah 53


Who will believe it when we tell it, for he is despised and rejected of men a man of sorrows afflicted with grief and we hid from him and esteemed him not


Surely he has born our griefs and carried our sorrows and yet we esteem him not stricken and smitten of god and afflicted


But he was wounded for OUR TRANSGRESSIONS and bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed


He was oppressed and he was afflicted yet he opened not his mouth; he was brought as a lamb to the slaughter



NON-CHRISTIAN SOURCES
http://www.nobeliefs.com/exist.htm

Virtually all other claims of Jesus come from sources outside of Christian writings. Devastating to the claims of Christians, however, comes from the fact that all of these accounts come from authors who lived after the alleged life of Jesus. Since they did not live during the time of the hypothetical Jesus, none of their accounts serve as eyewitness evidence.


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


Γίνεται δὲ κατὰ τοῦτον τὸν χρόνον Ἰησοῦς σοφὸς ἀνήρ, εἴγε ἄνδρα αὐτὸν λέγειν χρή: ἦν γὰρ παραδόξων ἔργων ποιητής, διδάσκαλος ἀνθρώπων τῶν ἡδονῇ τἀληθῆ δεχομένων, καὶ πολλοὺς μὲν Ἰουδαίους, πολλοὺς δὲ καὶ τοῦ Ἑλληνικοῦ ἐπηγάγετο: ὁ χριστὸς οὗτος ἦν. καὶ αὐτὸν ἐνδείξει τῶν πρώτων ἀνδρῶν παρ᾽ ἡμῖν σταυρῷ ἐπιτετιμηκότος Πιλάτου οὐκ ἐπαύσαντο οἱ τὸ πρῶτον ἀγαπήσαντες: ἐφάνη γὰρ αὐτοῖς τρίτην ἔχων ἡμέραν πάλιν ζῶν τῶν θείων προφητῶν ταῦτά τε καὶ ἄλλα μυρία περὶ αὐτοῦ θαυμάσια εἰρηκότων. εἰς ἔτι τε νῦν τῶν Χριστιανῶν ἀπὸ τοῦδε ὠνομασμένον οὐκ ἐπέλιπε τὸ φῦλον.


3.3 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, 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

Pliny the Younger, a Roman official, got born in 62 C.E. His letter about the Christians only shows that he got his information from Christian believers themselves. Regardless, his birth date puts him out of the range of eyewitness accounts.

Both quotes from 'The letters of the Younger Pliny' Book 10:96. This demonstrates that Christians lived in the second century and theybelieved in a being called 'Christ' whom they believed to be a god(according to Pliny's understanding). It's a useful piece of historicalinformation concerning the early church. But what does it demonstrate about the historical person of Jesus? Ah..wait.. I see now! Of course, Christians in the early second century wouldhave definitely checked out the evidence about who Jesus was and who heclaimed to be. So the fact that there were Christians then means that thegospels are historically reliable.

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

 
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