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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Paul Manata Reveals Truth: Jesus Not Human

I recently wrote a reply to one of Paul Manata's long winded posts about abortion, and when I went to go inform him in his comments section, I came across a real gem of a quote.

In the comments section of his recent post, Paul Manata is addressing some atheist as "vile sinner," and the atheist objects. Manata defends his ad hominem attack by saying:

PM: Well, since all men are sinners, and you're a man (i.e., mankind), then you're a sinner.


I laughed my Goddamn ass off. Literally. Naturally I had to ask him:

Paul, was Jesus a sinner?

If not, then how can he be a man?


I can't wait to see him squirm out of this one, or ban me from his comments section. I think this should be submitted to "Fundies Say the Darndest Things."

So much for Christianity.

Post a Comment


43 Comments:

At 3/22/2006 8:20 AM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

That is silly. Jesus was fully human AND fully divine. If he wasn't human, then what? A space alien? That requires more faith to believe then I have, my friend.

Jesus was sinless to provide the perfect sacrifice for our sins. If that was not so, skeptics from the first century would have published His list of sins in every language, crushing Chrisianity before it had a chance to take off.

 
At 3/22/2006 8:51 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Todd-

Why couldn't Jesus be a space alien? And how does your explanation tell us why Jesus, being a man, didn't sin, even though all men sin?

 
At 3/22/2006 10:57 AM, Blogger Vile Blasphemer declaimed...

And I was really only asking him some questions to get the breadth of his belief. He's so defensive that he wasn't even able to honor me with a normal reply.

 
At 3/22/2006 11:05 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Aaron,

I'll be responding to your contradictory post responding to my argument later, but what was interesting was your comment on how I took your definition of human and ran with it (which I'll show that 'twas no fault of mine to do so). You moaned because it was a off-handed comment "in the comments section." You complained because I should have been aware of the broader "context" which gave you definition meaning. Etc.

Now, when it is my turn, you don't afford me the same respect you wish to be afforded. This is more example of the hypocrisy of atheists. When it happens to you, you whine and complain, if I do the same thing, you capitalize.

So, was what I did to your definition wrong? If not, then please add an appendix to your post. If it was, then please ad an appendix to this post. Either way, you loose.

Now, to get to the question at hand. It's funny that you claim to have been a Christian. The Bible says that "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." So, it is not me who just came up with this, the Bible said it before me. So, this "contradiction" has been around for millenia. I wonder why no one has caught it before?

Second, all does not always mean all (e.g., news casters will frequently say, "the whole world is watching").

My quote is from Romans 3:23, and the context is clear that it is talking about mere humans, not the human Jesus, who was the God-man.

The broader context, Romans 1-3, is very plain that the "all men" referred to, throughout those chapters, is all of us humans as considered having a human father and mother, i.e., the mere human race. Not, the God man. In fact, Jesus is contrasted with the "all have sinned."

Furthermore, even more broader context tells us that God cannot sin, Jesus is God, therefore Jesus cannot sin.

Thus, the only way your "problem" materializes is if one ignores the plain context of the chapters I took the quote from. Frankly, this is a gigantic blunder, and is most embarrassing.

 
At 3/22/2006 11:49 AM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Nice try Paul. Realize that it is you who got all technical with my human definition initially, it is you who called up bats and rats and all this immature shit.

You went on for paragraphs about it and it was tedious to read considering it was in the middle of an 8000 word essay.

And when you so sweepingly said that all men are sinners, I thought it would only be fair to challenge you on it.

Now, when it is my turn, you don't afford me the same respect you wish to be afforded. This is more example of the hypocrisy of Christians. When it happens to you, you whine and complain, if I do the same thing, you capitalize.

Paul, dont try to play the "who is more respectful to who" game. We both know that you are much more eager to act disrespectful than I am, and to a much larger degree.

Youre just pissed that I actually treated something you said the same way you nitpick everything that I say.

Paul, you said:

Now, to get to the question at hand. It's funny that you claim to have been a Christian.

Paul, what is wrong with you? First off, you claim there are no atheists. Then you imply that I was never a Christian. So what the fuck am I???? You refuse to believe that atheists exist, yet you refuse to believe that I was a Christian? What do you think I am, a Hasidic Jew????? A Scientologist?

I suppose you will simply call me a fool. But "fool" is not a belief system.

The insane amount of contradictions within your little worldview are maddening.

Incidentaly, have you ever turned a non-Christian into a Christian ever in your entire life? I dont imagine that you are too good at converting people.

My quote is from Romans 3:23, and the context is clear that it is talking about mere humans, not the human Jesus, who was the God-man.

Theres nothing clear about that cognitive dissonance. Funny how you cannot conceive of a human with both male and female genitalia, but you have no problem conceiving of a finite man who didnt sin and is simultaneously an infinite God, when your definition of man is that they all sin.

Furthermore, even more broader context tells us that God cannot sin, Jesus is God, therefore Jesus cannot sin.

Yes, and Jesus was not a man. This has already been discussed at length between you and other atheists, and you got your butt kicked frankly. Your retarded attempts to smooth over the chasms within your imaginary superstition are laughable.

From the first law of thermodynamics, to the definition of human vs. God, to the concept of inherited guilt, your superstition is totally irreconcilable with reality, through and through. No amount of Bible reading or praying is going to make your fairy tale book come true Paul. And no amount of promises of heavenly rewards or threats of burning hellfire will make the afterlife real, nor will it make your consciousness exist after your body dies. Just give up your ridiculous cult already! Your Christian superstition is destined for the dustbin of ancient mythologies.

 
At 3/22/2006 11:56 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Paul argues:

"So, this "contradiction" has been around for millenia. I wonder why no one has caught it before? "

That's too funny. Not only is it an argumentum ad populum, but it's the same argument Jason Gastrich gave me when I pointed out two contradictory versions of the Ten Commandments. You two been drinking from the same trough?

 
At 3/22/2006 2:27 PM, Blogger Vile Blasphemer declaimed...

Why can't we all just smoke a fatty and get along?

 
At 3/22/2006 2:39 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

Isn't Paul a great example of how religious people are "scared, whining children" ?

 
At 3/22/2006 7:15 PM, Blogger Vile Blasphemer declaimed...

Tremblay,

Heck yeah, did you read how he jumped all over me for asking a couple of simple questions? Currently he has run away from my last post like a little girl.

HAHA!

 
At 3/22/2006 7:34 PM, Blogger TheJollyNihilist declaimed...

I thought the fact that Jesus wasn't human (or existent) was made obvious by the fact that not a single secular contemporary of his referenced him. Quoting from the book Atheist Universe, "There is not a single reference to a 'Jesus' or to 'Jesus Christ' written by any secular source who lived during the years in which Christ supposedly walked the Earth."

That's all I need...

 
At 3/22/2006 7:43 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Aaron, I don't think I was unfair to your definition, as my respoinse will point out. So, you shot yourself in the foot. But, and here's the kicker, you did think it unfair, yet you did the same thing to me. I guess the irrationalism of atheism knows no bounds.

As to your first red herring, believing in God does not make you a Christian (even the demons believe, right?). So, you loose on this score. I guess that little detail was left out because you're careless in comments sections?

Your second red herring did nothing to address that the context was referring to all mere humans. We've already discussed your attempts at pointing out a contradiction. if you remember, I posted last on that thread and you can feel free to start the embarrassment all over again.

Anyway, you asked about how I could "squirm" out of "this one." I showed you. Now, if you'd like to respond, rather than fly into a temper tantrum, and embarrass yourself, then be my guest.

Aaron, I go to you when I need to embarrass an atheist and not put much thought in it.

 
At 3/22/2006 7:49 PM, Blogger transcendiary declaimed...

It's amazing how you atheists at this blog jump and down at the silliest things. I've read a few posts here and laugh at how you guys so quickly pat eachother on the back when you spot Christians making mistakes. Paul has clearly indicated he used a common understanding of "men" even you atheists get. But you already know the Bible teaches that Jesus is not a created person as you and I are which is why you got so excited with Pauls response. That is, if Paul was lumping Jesus into a definition into which Jesus to did not belong, he would be contradicting himself. Yes, that would be an error if he meant Jesus as a created shlub like you and I. But since none of you are in any mood for a sermon on Christology, lets just say you seem to get a lot of pointing out others errors, as if your ad hominems have anything to do with truth.

So here's a question. If a Christian making an error in Christology provides evidence to you that Christianity is wrong, does a Christian getting it right provide any evidence that it's true? Of course not. You already knew the truth and disregarded it yet love to point out errors (real or straw) as evidence denying the truth. That's hypocrisy.

 
At 3/22/2006 8:12 PM, Blogger transcendiary declaimed...

fancisthemagnificentsaid
"not a single secular contemporary of his referenced him. "

For crying out loud francis, Christ preached for just 3 years as an itinerant preacher in a land full of religious people ruled by a secular power who cared little about all their religious goings-on which included all kinds of self proclaimed messiahs. Not surprising, then, that he was not a topic of all those secular authors in proximity of Jerusalem in 1st century Palestine. The revelation of what his life and death meant to Gentiles comes shortly after his resurrection.

But after his resurrection and the message leaves Jerusalem, it didn't take long for extra-biblical references to arise.

http://www.rationalchristianity.net/jesus_extrabib.html

 
At 3/22/2006 8:20 PM, Blogger transcendiary declaimed...

zachary moore re "Why couldn't Jesus be a space alien?". You should take note that there is nothing in a worldview that finds rationality in that question that can honestly provide an answer to "why can't zachary moore be a space alien?" When you're ready to use rationality, post me back.

 
At 3/22/2006 9:04 PM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Zachary Moore said...

Todd-

Why couldn't Jesus be a space alien? And how does your explanation tell us why Jesus, being a man, didn't sin, even though all men sin?
=====================
Given the physical evidence from history, it makes sense that Jesus is exactly who He said He is. There is no evidence that Jesus was a space alien, so that would not be a reasonable thing to believe.

Jesus being fully human gives us assurance that He understands our deepest pain. Jesus being fully divine gives us assurance of His purity and separate (holy) nature. This is a paradox, not a contradiction. Paradox is a tool God uses to explain His nature. Read the book of Hebrews. It has a very elegant explanation of this dual nature. You can read it as a contradiction, but clearly the writer was making a well-thought out (inspired) point, not random thoughts. That's not an argument to say the explination is true (I sure that it is true), just that it counters the argument that if Jesus was sinless (holy) he could not have been a man. Nice try, though.

Please forgive me if I don't respond. I've got a lot of things going. I find this site very interesting.

 
At 3/22/2006 10:12 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

Bla bla bla, why are you morons wasting your time trying to convince us that "Jesus" existed ? If we're going on credibility here, you should start with Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. Stupid Christians.

* There is ZERO historical evidence that "Jesus" existed.
* There is ZERO originality in the mythical character of "Jesus". It all comes from previous and contemporary myths.
* There is ZERO reason to whoreship this raving lunatic, failed cult leader "Jesus".
* There are ZERO neurons in your head.

 
At 3/22/2006 11:33 PM, Blogger transcendiary declaimed...

Oh francois you do so tempt me with your blather. But since you offer nothing but to shut your eyes and close your ears, and curl yourself into such a comatose little ball to clutch your vain little excuses I just can't decide if I'd rather watch you pout or pounce on your pathetic precepts. Meow, hiss.

 
At 3/23/2006 12:17 AM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

Shut up, godboy nerd.

 
At 3/23/2006 6:53 AM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Francois Tremblay said...

Bla bla bla, why are you morons wasting your time trying to convince us that "Jesus" existed ? If we're going on credibility here, you should start with Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. Stupid Christians.

* There is ZERO historical evidence that "Jesus" existed.
* There is ZERO originality in the mythical character of "Jesus". It all comes from previous and contemporary myths.
* There is ZERO reason to whoreship this raving lunatic, failed cult leader "Jesus".
* There are ZERO neurons in your head.
========================
My neurons are working just fine, thank you very much. Looks like you've read some of the lunitic ramblings that I've also read -- all from uncredible sources. I've yet to see a peer-reviewed article from anyone with a PhD in history or related subject that substantiates the claim that Jesus never existed, or was made up based on multiple real people and legends. Show me some evidence from a credible source. Jesus obviously had more of an impact on society than any other historical figure. If you want to go against the widely accepted fact that Jesus was a real person, was born out of wedlock, was executed as a heretic, had a missing body after his death, and started a movement that took many people (including high-ranking Jewish religious leaders) -- the burden of proof lies with your side. Good luck.

 
At 3/23/2006 7:54 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Josephus, Tacitus, Pliny, oh my! You can't be serious. Interpolation and hearsay, my man. Can't you find even one extrabiblical person who witnessed the zombie army in Jerusalem?

And why is the idea of extraterrestrial life irrational? Was that just a rhetorical flourish, or were you just trying to chicken out of answering the question?

 
At 3/23/2006 8:29 AM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Dr. Z, I just read your profile. PhD in Micro Biology. I respect that.

I think the question of Jesus being a man was asked and answered.

The question of extraterrestrial life is irrelevant. If God wants to create life elsewhere in the universe, that's fine with me. Who am I to say "no".

The zombie army poses an interesting question. If the story was made up, how could it have been published in the lifetime of witnesses without triggered writings that denied the event? If I set out to invent a religion I sure would not claim events that my critics could provide evidence that they never occured. The "legendary development" counter-argument is not going to work. There are too many translations in different language from the early years of Christianity to substantiate that claim.

I have a question for you as a scientist. This is not a trick -- I truly don't know the answer.

The Academy of Science denounces the idea of "Intellegent Design" because it undermines the taxonomy of biology that is the foundation of modern biology as a science. I hope I am paraphrasing them correctly. I find that statement perplexing. How does the idea of a creator (not necessarity in the Christian sense) undermine these classifications? As a Christian I have no problem with the idea that a trout is a type of fish -- that a fish is a vertabrate, etc.

I do understand that "creation science" is polluted with enough junk theory to reject the whole thing as a science. I've heard some whacky stuff, but I've also read writings from your fellow scientists that are well supported. It seems to me that these writings are rejected by NAS as a knee-jerk reaction to "creation science". I suppose you've already addressed this question somewhere on this forum.

My main question is that of the biological classifications. I don't follow the NAS argument.

 
At 3/23/2006 9:00 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

thetranscendental wrote: "But you already know the Bible teaches that Jesus is not a created person as you and I are which is why you got so excited with Pauls response."

I see. So, it's only when the Christian god creates men that they are sinners. When the Christian god does not create them, they aren't sinners. It seems that whatever the Christian god creates turns out to be deficient in some way, like a cheap product off a cheap assembly line. This does not jive with the claim that the Christian god is a perfect creator, for a perfect creator would not create imperfection.

I'm glad these aren't my problems!

Regards,
Dawson

 
At 3/23/2006 9:02 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

todd f: "If God wants to create life elsewhere in the universe, that's fine with me. Who am I to say 'no'."

Yeah, that's right - in the cartoon universe of Christian theism, the cartoonist-god of Christianity can do whatever the hell it wants, for wanting is its only standard since there are no objective constraints on what it can or cannot do. But we already know that it does not create perfection.

Regards,
Dawson

 
At 3/23/2006 11:09 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Todd-

I'm not making the argument that the zombie army as reported in Matthew makes it false. I'm arguing that if there really was a huge zombie army in Jerusalem, surely someone else besides Matthew would have written about it. It's kind of a once-in-a-lifetime event. But not even Josephus, the great Jewish historian, so much as mentions it.

Can you find the AAS quote? You're right- a taxonomy is simply a classification. But biology has shown us that taxonomic relationships are also phylogenetic relationships- that is to say, a salmon is more closely related to a trout than to a horse, in the same way that you're more closely related to your cousin than to me. If creationism is true, there is no reason why any two organisms should be more related to each other than anything else. Tune in to my podcast for a series on these evidences.

 
At 3/23/2006 11:34 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

I'm glad all can agree that I've "squirmed out of this one" and can agree that Kinney is a hack.

 
At 3/23/2006 2:49 PM, Blogger Hellbound Alleee declaimed...

What awful, awful people. Just despicable.

 
At 3/23/2006 4:00 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

I think we can all agree that you're quite squirmy, Paul, but as far as putting words in our mouths, you're really much better served when you do that to your god.

 
At 3/23/2006 4:27 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

LOL Paul Manata needs to make these claims to convince himself ;)

He sure doesnt put much thought into it when he writes eight thousand word responses to a handful of comment posts, I agree.

 
At 3/23/2006 4:30 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

For the record, it is much more plausible to suggest material space aliens than extra-dimensional ghosts from heaven (or hell).

Space aliens are less of an extraordinary claim than a man-god from heaven on every level.

 
At 3/24/2006 12:11 AM, Blogger mathyoo declaimed...

todd f said If you want to go against the widely accepted fact that Jesus was a real person, was born out of wedlock, was executed as a heretic, had a missing body after his death, and started a movement that took many people (including high-ranking Jewish religious leaders) -- the burden of proof lies with your side. Good luck.

Wrong. The burden of proof ALWAYS lies with the one making the original claim. Since Christians are the ones making the claim that this Jesus person a)existed and b) was the son of God, the burden is on you. In fact, the burden of proof is on you to prove that this god entity exists in the first place, and you havent' even accomplished that, in spite of thousands of years of effort.

 
At 3/24/2006 1:30 AM, Blogger Pavielle declaimed...

Hmm... You guys make me cry. Wow, atheists are always like; "Ahhh! The freakky religous person said God! oh my, what to do? My rights, my rights are violated! Wahhhhhh." Consider the Christian bashing fest that you are currently engaged in. "Tolerance," shout the atheists, "Tolerance for all." What about tolerance for the Christians? When did that fly out the window. And as for your complaints about: 'Oh my gosh! They tried to preach to me! I feel disrespected!" SHUT UP! Okay, if I as a Christian believe that you are damned and I am commanded to love you, then just letting you go wouldn't really be all that loving would it? Why do Christians evangalize? They love you guys! Every last stinking one of you? By the way, Jesus WAS a historically documented figure. And actually, He wasn't human.. you are right. He was God. His being however, was placed in human form... Does that make any sense? No... well... Who has seen the exorcist? Almost everyone. Okay, you probably don't believe in demons, but bear with me. So the little girl was human, right? But the demon took her over and therefore had human form. Does that make him a human? No. But is he still bound by some of the physical, mental, and emotional bounds of human form. jesus was like that. A holy spirit trapped in human form. Thus he could feel all the sensations that we feel and be temtped by the same sins. However, since he was truly not "internally" human (that is to say that his soul was not) He could overcome these things. not eliminate them, but overcome them.

 
At 3/24/2006 1:44 AM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"Jesus" was this, "Jesus" was that... "Jesus" didn't exist, you idiot. Shut the hell up.

 
At 3/24/2006 7:59 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Argumentum ad Exorcisum. Nice.

By the way, which one of us was crying over tolerance? Oh. Just you, then. Get over it.

 
At 3/24/2006 8:53 AM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Francis TM -- Regarding "Atheist Universe" -- I was not able to find any information on the author David Mills.

Does he have any credentials as a historian? Has he published any peer-reviewed articles claiming Jesus never existed?

Certainly there are historical publications outside of the biographies of Jesus that reference him. The argument I've heard against these references is that Jesus was a common name (it's the same name as Joshua), therefore the writings about Jesus actually refer to different people with the same name.

I'd like to hear a historian apply that same standard to other ancient figures. I'm sure Alexander was a common Greek name. Was there only one Hunn named Atilla?

Please look up the "About The Author" section of Atheist Universe and let me know.

 
At 3/24/2006 9:05 AM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Dr Z, I listened to the first in your series of podcasts. I have some knee-jerk reactions of my own, but I'll reserve judgement until I listen to the rest of them.

You are an answer to prayer. I'd been praying for the opportunity to establish contact with a scientist in micro-biology who rejects creationism.

My diciplines are computer science and library science, so I'm quite familiar with taxonomies and classifications in general. We adopted those terms and others from biology. Is Darwin the originator of the idea of mapping phylogenetic relationships?

I'm not sure exactly where I heard the statement I referenced. It could have been Time magazine, the radio, or a published article someone emailed me. That's why I was concered that I was paraphrasing them correctly.

Do you reject the idea of creation in all respects, or just the idea of creation by God in a Christian sense...or something in-between?

 
At 3/24/2006 10:51 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Todd-

Why don't you send me an email? zach at drzach dot net.

 
At 3/24/2006 2:15 PM, Blogger Pavielle declaimed...

Geez Francois you are so kind. And sooo moral. Little idiot Pavielle loves you. And I won't shut up. Sorry. Anyway, whether or not you believe Jesus was God, he is historically documented. There are documents that exist outside the Bible, written by noteworthy historians of His time that mention his life and person. He did exist. He was a person. Duhhhhhh.....

 
At 3/24/2006 2:17 PM, Blogger Pavielle declaimed...

Better recheck your history Francois. Are you 100% sure that Jesus never was? If so, its all cool. I can provide hisotical documents and analysis of these (written by people much more credible than you) to prove otherwise.

 
At 3/24/2006 2:19 PM, Blogger Pavielle declaimed...

And Zachary, if you guys can generalize about Christians (ie Christians are immoral), then there is no good reason that I can't generalize about atheists. And most that I have met proclaim tolerance. But you guys don't even tolerate, you are just cold. Where is the love? I don't care if you disagree with me. Geez. But these personal attacks that mean nothing are getting old. Sad.

 
At 3/24/2006 2:49 PM, Blogger Pavielle declaimed...

HERE is the evidence you said didn't exist. Check out these historical documents:

By "historicity" I mean historical authenticity. There is a yet small, but growing movement that seeks to present Jesus Christ as a mythical figure, the product of wishful thinking that is totally devoid of any historic documentation that a man named Jesus who founded Christianity ever existed. To my knowledge, there was no indication of any serious doubting on any scale that Jesus was a real historical man until about the eighteenth Century. However, some are becoming bolder today in their claims that Jesus is simply mythical, on the par of Santa Clause, etc.

Biblical evidence regarding Jesus Christ. The Bible is replete with allusion to Jesus as a real person. We prophetically read of Jesus' birth, life, and his betrayal, trials, and crucifixion (Micah 5: 2, Isa. 7: 14; Isa. 40: 3, 53: 3, 42: 1; Matt. 27). Matthew chapter twenty-seven is a running commentary, as it were, containing about sixteen prophetic fulfillments that took place in about a twenty-four hour period, regarding Jesus' suffering, death, and resurrection. Altogether, there are about 332 prophecies regarding the Christ, all clearly fulfilled in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. The historian wrote thus in presenting Jesus as an actual person who lived, and more, was victoriously resurrected:

"1: The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2: Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen: 3: To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God" (Acts 1).

While biblical proof of Jesus being real is easily established, how about non-biblical proof? Does secular history document that the Jesus mentioned in the scriptures actually lived about 2, 000 years ago?

Historical evidence concerning Jesus. There are a number of ancient historians, writers, and educators whom we could introduce regarding the historic reality of a man named Jesus, the founder of the movement that bears his name, Christianity. These individuals are highly recognized as being reputable and reliable in their various writings and are extensively quoted even by agnostic and even atheistic learned people today.

Flavius Josephus. Josephus was born in either 37 or 38 A. D. When he was 26 years old, he took upon himself the mission of seeking to improve the relations between the Jews and the Romans. He was a historian who was highly respected by the Roman world. He was held in such high regard that he was allowed to accompany Titus when Titus led the Romans Army against Jerusalem (70 A. D.). Josephus wrote several books that have come down to us today, History of the Jewish War (seven different books) and Jewish Antiquities, to name some. Josephus was not a Christian himself. We read:

"At that time lived Jesus, a wise man, if he may be called a man; for he performed many wonderful works. He was a teacher of such men as received the truth with pleasure….And when Pilate, at the instigation of the chief men among us, had condemned him to the cross, they who before had conceived an affection for him did not cease to adhere to him. For on the third day he appeared to them alive again, the divine prophets having foretold these and many other wonderful things concerning him. And the sect of the Christians, so called from him, subsists at this time" (Antiquities, Book 18, Chapter 3, Section 1).

In all fairness, many among scholars today are claiming that the above just quoted was not originally written by Josephus but is an interpolation. However, the passage is present in every copy of which we have knowledge, just as quoted. The above passage was twice quoted by Eusebius as early as 315 A. D. Another passage in which Josephus mentions the historic Jesus is found in Antiquities, Book 20, Chapter 9, and Section 1. This second reference has received comparatively little rejection. After exhaustive research, it could very well be that very early on, a copyist dressed up Josephus' first statement in an attempt to make it more favorable to Jesus. The passage is found in the context of references to sedition, before and after the passage. The above quotation does make reference to, "the sect of the Christians, so called from him, subsists at this time." This is probably, no doubt, part of the pure text, if the text were doctored. However, even if we allow for the early changing of the text, most would have to agree that Josephus does historically allude to Jesus.

Carius Cornelius Tacitus (many of his writings were about 100 A. D.). Tacitus was a Roman historian who reportedly hated Christians. In writing about the life of Nero and the accusation that he burned the city of Rome and blamed it on the Christians, Tacitus says:

"…Nero procured others to be accused, and inflicted exquisite punishment upon those people, who were in abhorrence for their crimes, and were commonly known by the name of Christians. They had their denomination from Christus (Christ, dm.), who in the reign of Tibertius was put to death as a criminal by the procurator Pontius Pilate….At first they were only apprehended who confessed themselves of that sect; afterwards a vast multitude discovered by them, all of which were condemned, not so much for the crime of burning the city, as for their enmity to mankind. Their executions were so contrived as to expose them to derision and contempt. Some were covered with the skins of wild beasts, and torn to pieces by dogs; some were crucified; others having been daubed over with combustible materials, were set up as lights in the night time, and thus burned to death…" (Tacitus, Annals, 15, 44).

Notice that while Tacitus had no regard for the Christians of whom he wrote, he does mention Christ as being the founder of their belief.

Suetonius (Roman historian, born about 88 A. D.). While Suetonius does not mention Christ by name, he does refer to Christianity. This reference and many more that could be supplied proves the early origin of Christianity and details that are congruous with the biblical account. Hear his brief statement in also writing about the life of Nero whose reign began in 54 and ended in 68 A. D.:

"Punishments were also inflicted on the Christians, a sect professing a new and mischievous religious belief" (Suetonius, The Twelve Caesars, pg. 197).

Pliny the younger, born in 61 A. D. Pliny was sent by the Emperor Trajan to Bithynia in 112 as propraetor. Having found a large number of Christians there, he wrote back to Trajan to get information on how to deal with them. Pliny says to Trajan:

"It is my rule, Sire, to refer to you in matters where I am uncertain. For who can better direct my hesitation or instruct my ignorance? I was never present at any trial of Christians; therefore I do not know what are the customary penalties or investigations, and what limits are observed…." Under specific item number five of his letter, Pliny wrote: "…All who denied that they were or had been Christians I considered should be discharged, because they called upon the gods at my dictation and did reverence, with incense and wine, to your image which I had ordered to be brought forward for this purpose, together with the statutes of the deities; and especially because they cursed Christ, a thing which, it is said, genuine Christians cannot be induced to do…."

Under item number six, he continued:

"…Others named by the informer first said that they were Christians and then denied it; declaring that they had been but were so no longer, some having recanted three years or more before and one or two as long as twenty years. They all worshipped your image and the statues of the gods and cursed Christ…."

Concerned reader, as seen in the foregoing, there is no doubt that Christianity had its beginning in the First Century and that Jesus Christ is its founder. In addition to the secular writings quoted above, why should the twenty-six books of the New Testament be discounted as establishing the historicity of Jesus? "Jesus" or "Christ" is mentioned specifically in twenty-six of the books. Third John, "Jesus" and "Christ" absent) does imply Jesus (vs. 7). These books cover a critical time period of about 56 through 96 A. D. and involve ten different authors. The matter most valuable about these twenty-six books is that they have been subjected to more tests to determine authenticity than any other books (canonicity).

In closing, a man named Jesus Christ really and actually lived. This is established from secular history. He is presented as the founder of the movement that bears his name, Christianity. The Bible does more, however, than simply present the historicity of a man named Jesus (click on, "Jesus, His Identity" to read more).

Oh... if you don't believe that the Bible could be historically accurate, ask Francois about the e-mail I sent. It contained "The Top Ten Reasons Why the Bible Must be Valid." Have fun trying to legitimately tear it apart. Can't wait to see what you guys think.

 
At 3/24/2006 3:59 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Pavielle-

We love truth. Why should we tolerate anything less?

And didn't I already dismiss Josephus and the others as interpolation and hearsay? Did any of those guys actually see Jesus themselves? No? Then it's called hearsay.

Can you find anyone outside the bible who witnessed the zombie army in Jerusalem? Email me if you can.

 
At 3/24/2006 4:17 PM, Blogger Todd F declaimed...

Is Jessica Simpson real? Has anyone on this forum seen her? Or just in pictures and videos that could have been faked?

 
At 3/24/2006 5:11 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Is anyone threatening to eternally torture me if I don't believe that Jessica Simpson exists?

 

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