Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

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Tired of the Nonsense
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Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #1

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

I will go first.

The resurrection might only approach the "best explanation" if it stands without any natural explanation to challenge it. And that simply is not the case.

The four Gospels represent the ONLY information on the life Jesus that anyone supposes has any connection to valid history. And a good deal of what is contained in the NT strains credulity. In fact, it is flatly unbelievable. Here is a short version of events that closely follows the accepted story, but which does not require any recourse to any supernatural occurrences. I am not claiming that this is what actually occurred, simply that it explains the events naturally without recourse to supernatural claims.

Matthew 27:
[62] Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,
[63] Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.
[64] Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
[65] Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.
[66] So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

The day after the crucifixion chief priests went out to Joseph's tomb, and finding it covered with a large stone, and owing to the nature of the day (the Sabbath and Passover) did not open and search it, but instead secured what was an already empty tomb! Why was the tomb already empty? Because Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, got legal possession of the body from the Roman governor.

Matthew 27:
[57]When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

Joseph never intended that his brand new family crypt should be the final resting place for Jesus, but only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body. Because the day was late and his tomb was "nigh at hand" (John 19:42) to the place where Jesus had been crucified. The next day when the priests secured Joseph's tomb, the body of Jesus was already being relocated to its actual intended final resting place by his disciples.

And so exactly what the priests feared the disciples intended to do is EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED. Joseph's tomb proved to be empty. Six weeks later the disciples returned to Jerusalem and began to circulate the rumor that Jesus had "risen" from the dead. Something only they witnessed, according to them.

So when the priests took possession of Joseph's new tomb on the next day, they did not open and inspect it for the body of Jesus, because it was a high holy day. Instead they placed seals on the tomb to insure that whatever its condition was that condition would remain until they could return and inspect the tomb. The tomb proved to be empty the next morning. Clearly the body of Jesus WAS ALREADY GONE! The conclusion that Christians declare to be the only explanation for the empty tomb is in fact the least likely explanation.


So where would the final resting place of Jesus likely have been? The Gospels do not say, but we can make an educated guess. It was a strong custom among the Jews to bury their dead with family members. Any family of any substance had a personal family crypt where family members were interred together. Rich folks like Joseph could afford hand cut family crypts to be constructed. Folks of lesser means tended to use natural caves and caverns, usually with the family named carved at the entrance. If Joseph the rich man truly wanted to honor Jesus, he would have had the body transported home to be buried with is own family, not inter him with Joseph's family. Home to his family in Galilee, about 65 miles to the north east of Jerusalem. About a three day journey on foot. All down hill.

Matthew 28:
[16] Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

The remaining apostles all journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion! The home of the family of Jesus.

The only thing I am assuming is that Joseph of Arimathea never intended to use his personal family crypt as the final resting place for Jesus, only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body, and had the body shipped home to be buried by Jesus' own family members. All of which fits easily into the story at hand.

Why was Joseph's tomb empty on sunday morning? BECAUSE THE PRIESTS TOOK POSSESSION OF AN EMPTY TOMB ON SATURDAY. The body had already been moved by the disciples of Jesus WHO ALREADY HAD LEGAL POSSESSION OF IT.

This is in fact THE OBVIOUS CONCLUSION! The conclusion that the body came back to life and left the tomb under its own power, ultimately flying off up into the clouds, is the LEAST LIKELY CONCLUSION. In fact this conclusion has no likelihood at all.

So, is this they way things actually played out? There is no way to know just how much of the story is valid. This particular accounting makes perfect sense however. It DOES NOT lead to supposing that a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew away I am afraid.

Post #52
viewtopic.php?p=902413#902413

Now at long last, please answer the question.
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

For_The_Kingdom
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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #2

Post by For_The_Kingdom »

Tired of the Nonsense wrote: I will go first.

The resurrection might only approach the "best explanation" if it stands without any natural explanation to challenge it.
The natural explanation has to have more explanatory power for all alleged facts related to the Resurrection.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And that simply is not the case.
Thus; this debate.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The four Gospels represent the ONLY information on the life Jesus that anyone supposes has any connection to valid history. And a good deal of what is contained in the NT strains credulity.
We all have our opinions.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: In fact, it is flatly unbelievable.
I believe it.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Here is a short version of events that closely follows the accepted story, but which does not require any recourse to any supernatural occurrences. I am not claiming that this is what actually occurred, simply that it explains the events naturally without recourse to supernatural claims.

Matthew 27:
[62] Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,
[63] Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.
[64] Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
[65] Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.
[66] So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

The day after the crucifixion chief priests went out to Joseph's tomb, and finding it covered with a large stone, and owing to the nature of the day (the Sabbath and Passover) did not open and search it, but instead secured what was an already empty tomb! Why was the tomb already empty? Because Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, got legal possession of the body from the Roman governor.

Matthew 27:
[57]When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

Joseph never intended that his brand new family crypt should be the final resting place for Jesus, but only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body.
Notice that there is no Biblical (or otherwise) reference to Joseph of Arimathea's (JoA) intentions for the tomb, BESIDES for burial of Jesus. Any speculation of his intentions for reasons beyond this is exactly that, speculation...speculation that is completely unwarranted.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Because the day was late and his tomb was "nigh at hand" (John 19:42) to the place where Jesus had been crucified. The next day when the priests secured Joseph's tomb, the body of Jesus was already being relocated to its actual intended final resting place by his disciples.
There is no mention whatsoever in the narratives of Jesus' body being relocated. Mere speculation, and again, unwarranted.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And so exactly what the priests feared the disciples intended to do is EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED. Joseph's tomb proved to be empty.
It sure was.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Six weeks later the disciples returned to Jerusalem and began to circulate the rumor that Jesus had "risen" from the dead. Something only they witnessed, according to them.
It wouldn't have been rumors, it would have been flat out LIES...that aside, the hole in your theory is an obvious one; according to the narrative, it wouldn't have been the disciples who started the lies, it would have been the WOMEN.

It was the women (Mary & company) who discovered the tomb empty..and it was they who told the disciples, and the disciples went to the tomb to confirm this.

A guard was placed at the tomb the very next day. So what you are saying is; that the disciples came and stole Jesus' body on the same day that he was buried...and a couple days later, the women women to the tomb to find it empty, of which they reported to the same disciples who took the body...

And then, Peter and John went through this Oscar-award winning acting performance of running to the tomb, a tomb that they already knew would be empty in a dramatic attempt to look bewildered at the fact that Jesus' body was no longer there, when they in fact took the body.

So your theory is not that they "stole" the body, but they just rather placed the body in a different tomb, and then they made up a lie story as a result, correct?

Not only that, but the actual narratives state that the there was a huge stone placed to cover the tomb..so how would the disciples have moved the stone to take the body elsewhere?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: So when the priests took possession of Joseph's new tomb on the next day, they did not open and inspect it for the body of Jesus, because it was a high holy day.
Um, the plan was never to "open it and inspect it for the body of Jesus". In fact, according to the actual narrative, the only thing the priests wanted to do was ensure that none of Jesus' followers would come and steal the body and "claim" that he Resurrected. This was done by sealing the tomb shut and placing guards there for 24-hour surveillance.

So, where are you getting this "open the tomb and inspect it for the body stuff". More speculation?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Instead they placed seals on the tomb to insure that whatever its condition was that condition would remain until they could return and inspect the tomb. The tomb proved to be empty the next morning. Clearly the body of Jesus WAS ALREADY GONE! The conclusion that Christians declare to be the only explanation for the empty tomb is in fact the least likely explanation.
Again, the narratives clearly state that JoA placed a huge stone over the tomb's entrance. So how could anyone get in there once the stone was placed? So I guess what you are suggesting is that the disciples came as a group, and using their strength, moved the huge stone, took Jesus' body, and then moved the stone back over the entrance.

So by the time the guards came to the tomb the next day, the covered tomb is now empty? Correct?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: So where would the final resting place of Jesus likely have been? The Gospels do not say, but we can make an educated guess. It was a strong custom among the Jews to bury their dead with family members. Any family of any substance had a personal family crypt where family members were interred together.


Rich folks like Joseph could afford hand cut family crypts to be constructed. Folks of lesser means tended to use natural caves and caverns, usually with the family named carved at the entrance. If Joseph the rich man truly wanted to honor Jesus, he would have had the body transported home to be buried with is own family, not inter him with Joseph's family. Home to his family in Galilee, about 65 miles to the north east of Jerusalem. About a three day journey on foot. All down hill.
The final resting place of an unresurrected Jesus is irrelevant.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Matthew 28:
[16] Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

The remaining apostles all journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion! The home of the family of Jesus.
Umm, bro, you are starting at verse 16, but if you read the context of the entire passage, you will see that the disciples all "journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion", not because it was the "home of the family of Jesus"...but because JESUS TOLD THEM TO GO THERE!!

8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,� he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.�

SMH.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The only thing I am assuming is that Joseph of Arimathea never intended to use his personal family crypt as the final resting place for Jesus, only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body, and had the body shipped home to be buried by Jesus' own family members. All of which fits easily into the story at hand.
"Had" it shipped, or "planned" for it to be shipped?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Why was Joseph's tomb empty on sunday morning? BECAUSE THE PRIESTS TOOK POSSESSION OF AN EMPTY TOMB ON SATURDAY. The body had already been moved by the disciples of Jesus WHO ALREADY HAD LEGAL POSSESSION OF IT.


Ok, again, the disciples moved the huge stone, correct?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
This is in fact THE OBVIOUS CONCLUSION! The conclusion that the body came back to life and left the tomb under its own power, ultimately flying off up into the clouds, is the LEAST LIKELY CONCLUSION. In fact this conclusion has no likelihood at all.


Ok, so you are saying that the disciples did not believe that Jesus' tomb was empty, and that they saw the resurrected Jesus, correct? It was all lies?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
So, is this they way things actually played out? There is no way to know just how much of the story is valid. This particular accounting makes perfect sense however. It DOES NOT lead to supposing that a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew away I am afraid.


It does, if the hypothesis is that God raised Jesus from the dead.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Post #52
viewtopic.php?p=902413#902413

Now at long last, please answer the question.


What do I think Jesus' mission was?

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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #3

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 2 by For_The_Kingdom]

For_The_Kingdom wrote: The natural explanation has to have more explanatory power for all alleged facts related to the Resurrection.
A natural explanation would necessarily have to better explain the facts at hand than a supernatural explanation. Agreed. Since natural explanations for events are to be had in the overwhelming majority of cases, a supernatural explanation should be reasonably expected to be given serious consideration only if no natural explanation is to be had. A natural explanation and a supernatural explanation do not start from a position of equal plausibility.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The four Gospels represent the ONLY information on the life Jesus that anyone supposes has any connection to valid history. And a good deal of what is contained in the NT strains credulity.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: We all have our opinions.
Matthew 27:
[52] And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
[53] And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.


In an account that failed to be recorded by a single other source, Matthew says that upon the death of Jesus hordes of dead people came up out of their graves and wandered into the city, where they were seen by many. Is it your opinion that his represents a perfectly straightforward historical account of an actual occurrence?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
In fact, it is flatly unbelievable. (referring to the story of the corpse of Jesus returning to life and then flying away)
For_The_Kingdom wrote: I believe it.
Presumably you also believe Matthew's "Night of the Living Dead" tale as well. Which sets the bar of your personal credibility remarkably low.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Here is a short version of events that closely follows the accepted story, but which does not require any recourse to any supernatural occurrences. I am not claiming that this is what actually occurred, simply that it explains the events naturally without recourse to supernatural claims.

Matthew 27:
[62] Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,
[63] Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.
[64] Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
[65] Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.
[66] So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.


The day after the crucifixion the chief priests went out to Joseph's tomb, and finding it covered with a large stone, and owing to the nature of the day (the Sabbath and Passover) did not open and search it, but instead secured what was an already empty tomb! Why was the tomb already empty? Because Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, got legal possession of the body from the Roman governor.

Matthew 27:
[57]When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

John 19:
There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand.


Joseph never intended that his brand new family crypt should be the final resting place for Jesus, but only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: There is no mention whatsoever in the narratives of Jesus' body being relocated. Mere speculation, and again, unwarranted.
The Gospel authors do not mention the body being relocated because the Gospel authors were unaware of it.

We must first keep in mind that the Gospels were written forty to sixty years after Jesus was executed, by anonymous individuals who almost certainly believed the details they were presenting to be true. Let me repeat that second part. By individuals who almost certainly believed the details they were presenting to be true

What the Gospels represent in the state of the rumor 40-60 years after Jesus was executed that began with the early disciples of Jesus six weeks after the execution. And it is clear that Christians have supposed from the earliest of times that Joseph intended to bury Jesus in his new tomb. But that presents a real puzzle.

Tombs like Joseph's were hardly rare. In fact such tombs were considered status symbols among the rich. They were not constructed to be single occupancy tombs however. They were really family crypts, intended to contain multiple members of a family. The layout of such tombs, hand carved into living rock, were a flat ledge, surrounded by niches carved into the wall. The body would be washed and wrapped, and then left for a few weeks or months to allow the natural decaying process to occur. At that point a second ceremony for the body a deceased family member would be performed. The bones would be collected and placed into a stone ossuary, and the stone ossuary would be placed on a ledge. Usually the ossuary would have the person's name carved into it, and often other small works of art. These sorts of tombs were intended only for immediate family members. The only non blood family members who would be interred in this manner were the wives.

Jesus, as a non blood family member, would have been extraordinarily out of place in Joseph's new family tomb. Worse, Jesus had had HIS OWN FAMILY about 65 miles away in Galilee. About a three day walk. If Joseph really intended to honor Jesus, he would have had the body of Jesus shipped home to be interred with his own family. For the less than wealthy class, mountain caves and grottos were typically used for interring family members.

Matthew 28:
[16] Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.


Presumably the mountain in question here was Mt. Tabor, which is traditionally believed by Christians to have been the site of the transfiguration.

Image

So if you want to locate the body of Jesus, my suggestion would be to go and search Mt. Tabor. Unfortunately a very brisk black market has developed for these ossuaries in recent times, as objects of art for the wealthy. The bones were often summarily cast aside.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And so exactly what the priests feared the disciples intended to do is EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED. Joseph's tomb proved to be empty.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: It sure was.


A point of agreement. Some people like to point out that Paul seemed to have been totally unaware of the tomb, since he never mentions it. An indication that the story of the tomb formed post Paul. The tomb itself is perfectly plausible however, and I see no reason to dispute it.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: It wouldn't have been rumors, it would have been flat out LIES...that aside, the hole in your theory is an obvious one; according to the narrative, it wouldn't have been the disciples who started the lies, it would have been the WOMEN.

It was the women (Mary & company) who discovered the tomb empty..and it was they who told the disciples, and the disciples went to the tomb to confirm this.
People lie, yes. I have already pointed out that Peter is one of the most notorious liars in all of western literature. And again I should point out that what we are dealing with here is the state of the story of the risen Jesus that was in circulation 40-60 years after Jesus was executed. Your complaint that it originally was the women that began to circulate the story of the empty tomb deserves some consideration, however.

John 19:
[38] And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.
[39] And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.

Matthew 27:
[60] And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.
[61] And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.


Mary Magdalene was at the tomb when Joseph and Nicodemus departed. She clearly knew the state of the body. And what do we find the next morning?

[Mark.16
[1] And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.
[2] And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun.
[3] And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?
[4] And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great.


This may be the most remarkable fools errand of all time. Certainly the most famous. Mark tells us that the women went out to the tomb at the crack of dawn on an urgent mission to slather more ointment on a corpse already slathered in 100 pounds of the stuff, knowing full well that they had no possible chance of getting to the body, based on the unrealistic hope that perhaps there might be some men who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night, who would kindly agree to move the stone for them. These are remarkable woman unlike any I have ever met. Or perhaps they thought they could prevail upon the guards to disobey their orders and break the seals, so that the women could finish their ever so important task of making sure that Jesus was well slathered up.

These passages simply scream lies and fabrication. If the women went out to the tomb that morning, it was because they were already aware that the tomb was open, and that the tomb was empty. Going out to visit the body knowing there was no possible way they could get at the body would mean that these women were too stupid to walk and chew gum at the same time. Their real mission was to spread the word of the empty tomb. Because the claim that Jesus would return on the third day has little meaning without witnesses that can verify that the tomb was empty on the third day.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: A guard was placed at the tomb the very next day. So what you are saying is; that the disciples came and stole Jesus' body on the same day that he was buried...and a couple days later, the women women to the tomb to find it empty, of which they reported to the same disciples who took the body...
NO! I have said very plainly that the disciples did not have to steal the body. The body of Jesus was already in the legal possession of his disciples.

Now let's look again at John 19:39 above. Nicodemus brought 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe. Myrrh is the very aromatic sap of the Commiphora family. Aloe is a succulent. Combining ground myrrh with aloe would produce a gum paste that would dry into a kind of a resin. 100 pounds would easily have been enough to coat the entire body. But what would be the point.

Coating the body might have served to retard the natural decaying process for a few days, and would have disguised the smell of decay. But there would have been no point in doing this if the intent was to inter the body permanently in Joseph's tomb. On the other hand, coating the body makes perfect sense if the intention was to move the body elsewhere. Given the state of the science of preservation at the time, which was minimal, coating the body for the purpose of moving it to another location makes perfect sense.

The women, who after all were also disciples of Jesus, were in on it. This brings us to the question of how many individual were aware that the body of Jesus was transported back to Galilee. And of course, the authors of the Gospels, fully believing that Joseph's tomb was always the intended place of interment for Jesus, don't give us those sorts of details. It's possible to reach a minimum number however. The eleven remaining apostles, Joseph and Nicodemus, the three Mary's, James the brother of John, and Mary the mother of Jesus. Less than 20.

Which brings up the question of Mary the mother of Jesus. When last we see Mary in the gospels, she is at the foot of the cross. But the Gospels never mention her again. So where DO we next encounter Mary the mother of Jesus?

Acts 1:
[14] These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.


With the apostles newly returned from Galilee. Because if you were going to transport your friend back home for a proper burial by his family, wouldn't you naturally take his mother with you?
For_The_Kingdom wrote: So your theory is not that they "stole" the body, but they just rather placed the body in a different tomb, and then they made up a lie story as a result, correct?
They sent the body home for burial. Happens all the time.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Not only that, but the actual narratives state that the there was a huge stone placed to cover the tomb..so how would the disciples have moved the stone to take the body elsewhere?
Matthew 27:
[60] And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.


Frank Morrison attempted to make a big deal out of the great stone in his book "Who Moved the Stone?" Consider that the Egyptian pyramids were already thousands of years old at the time of Jesus. Moving large stones was no great feat of engineering. Three or four capable men with levers could do the job.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Um, the plan was never to "open it and inspect it for the body of Jesus". In fact, according to the actual narrative, the only thing the priests wanted to do was ensure that none of Jesus' followers would come and steal the body and "claim" that he Resurrected. This was done by sealing the tomb shut and placing guards there for 24-hour surveillance.
Technically this is correct. The priests never intended to open and search the tomb. They couldn't very well open the tomb on a high holy day. First, that would have been performing work on the Sabbath. Second, exposing a dead body would have been an offence against God. And third, even being in the line of sight of a human corpse would have rendered the priests so ritually unclean they would not even have been able to enter the temple or participate in the Passover rituals. So they did the obvious thing. They placed seals on the tombs and waited. The seals in fact tell us specifically that they were uncertain of the condition of the tomb. The seals were meant to indemnify the guards of any possibility of taking bribes if the tomb proved to be empty the next day. Which it did. The seal were not there to warn away intruders. The guards were there to warn away intruders. Any intruders intent on disturbing the tomb by taking on armed guards, would hardly care about official seals.

The seals tell us specifically that the priests suspected that the tomb might already be empty.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: So, where are you getting this "open the tomb and inspect it for the body stuff". More speculation?
Oddly enough you are one of the few Christian apologists that isn't incredulous at the prospect that the priests would not automatically open the tomb and make sure the body was actually there. They suspected a hoax was in the process remember. But I have already pointed out to you that it was a high hold day, prohibiting the priests from searching the tomb. The priests certainly had a reason for wanting to open the tomb and inspect it as soon as possible. Otherwise they were guarding an empty tomb.

I specifically pointed out that the priest DID NOT open and inspect the tomb. They had no idea of what was inside.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Again, the narratives clearly state that JoA placed a huge stone over the tomb's entrance. So how could anyone get in there once the stone was placed? So I guess what you are suggesting is that the disciples came as a group, and using their strength, moved the huge stone, took Jesus' body, and then moved the stone back over the entrance.
And again, moving the stone was no great feat of engineering. Once the body was washed, wrapped and coated in myrrh and aloe gum paste, it's reasonable to suppose that the body began its journey at that point. Because haste was called for. First, they were dealing with a very perishable cargo. Second, the city was filled with tens of thousands of pilgrims for the Passover ceremonies who would quickly clog the roads returning to their homes. And third, there may have been some sense that the Jewish authorities might seek to get involved again. Which they did.

Starting off as soon as possible was the obvious solution. As soon as the body was ready to make the journey, off it went.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: So by the time the guards came to the tomb the next day, the covered tomb is now empty? Correct?
The tomb proved to be empty the next morning, so obviously, yes.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Umm, bro, you are starting at verse 16, but if you read the context of the entire passage, you will see that the disciples all "journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion", not because it was the "home of the family of Jesus"...but because JESUS TOLD THEM TO GO THERE!!

8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,� he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.�
They lied. We are talking about the spreading of a false rumor here. So of course their claims of meeting the risen Jesus abound with stories of meeting the risen Jesus. But they lied. How do we know they lied? Because they claimed a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew off up into the sky. Something only they had direct knowledge of. I suppose calling that the biggest lie of all time is not too much of an overstatement.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The only thing I am assuming is that Joseph of Arimathea never intended to use his personal family crypt as the final resting place for Jesus, only used it as a convenient place to wash and prepare the body, and had the body shipped home to be buried by Jesus' own family members. All of which fits easily into the story at hand.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: "Had" it shipped, or "planned" for it to be shipped?
Jesus died sometime around the ninth hour (3:00 PM.) It gets dark about 6:00 PM. The first three stars in the sky indicates the beginning of the new day. And this day was not only the Sabbath, but passover. So Joseph and the apostles, as jews, would not have been able to begin the journey immediately. But Joseph was a rich man, and Sabbath day prohibitions only apply to Jews. It was a common practice among Jews to employ Shabbos goy (Sabbath Goy) to do work on the sabbath when it was necessary. Joseph was not profiting from having the body of Jesus transported home, he was doing and act of kindness. And haste was imperative.

Wikipedia
Shabbos goy
Judaism prohibits Jews from doing certain types of work, known as melakha, on the Sabbath. Within certain guidelines (see Shulkhan Arukh), a non-Jew may perform certain acts which are beneficial to Jews but which may not be performed by Jews on the Sabbath. There are numerous restrictions[1] and certain types of work are prohibited, such as contractor work.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shabbos_goy
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Ok, so you are saying that the disciples did not believe that Jesus' tomb was empty, and that they saw the resurrected Jesus, correct? It was all lies?


Only a relatively small number of individuals directly involved with moving the body would necessarily have known that Jesus had not actually returned from the dead. Perhaps less than 20.

The individuals involved with moving the body were aware that they were spreading a lie, yes. I would say a very close comparison occurs with the origins of Mormonism. A group of men lied. Unless you are a Mormon. In which case this comparison will completely escape you.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
So, is this they way things actually played out? There is no way to know just how much of the story is valid. This particular accounting makes perfect sense however. It DOES NOT lead to supposing that a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew away I am afraid.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: It does, if the hypothesis is that God raised Jesus from the dead.


If the hypothesis is that God gave Muhammad the Quran, then there is no doubt that the Quran is the Word of God. It all depends on which brand of make believe one has been indoctrinated into.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: What do I think Jesus' mission was?


Jesus left nothing written in his own hand. Yeshua the man, assuming that he existed, has been completely replaced by the mythological figure of Jesus the Christ. Knowing what Jesus himself thought his mission was is entirely impossible to ascertain. The claim that Jesus came to earth to redeem us from the sin that God had created for us in the garden, is again, pretty silly.
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #4

Post by For_The_Kingdom »

Tired of the Nonsense wrote: A natural explanation and a supernatural explanation do not start from a position of equal plausibility.
Welllll, it depends..
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Matthew 27:
[52] And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
[53] And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.


In an account that failed to be recorded by a single other source, Matthew says that upon the death of Jesus hordes of dead people came up out of their graves and wandered into the city, where they were seen by many. Is it your opinion that his represents a perfectly straightforward historical account of an actual occurrence?
Yes, it is my opinion that the resurrection of the saints is a historical account of an actual occurrence. That is because I have no reason to believe that the account is figurative/symbolic. However, I am open.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Presumably you also believe Matthew's "Night of the Living Dead" tale as well. Which sets the bar of your personal credibility remarkably low.
It is also my belief that, if life from nonlife is possible (abiogenesis), then coming back to life is possible. To me, at face value, one isn't any more absurd than the other...but the difference between my belief in the Resurrection (or resurrections in general) and your (naturalistic) belief that life arose from nonliving material...is that my belief is based on a supernatural hypothesis, while your belief is based on naturalism.

I admit that my belief needs to be explained beyond the natural realm, while naturalists believe that abiogenesis was a natural occurrence...meanwhile, I personally don't see how the belief in a resurrection is any more absurd than a belief in abiogenesis.

That being said, I can certainly can say the same thing to you; that your belief in abiogenesis sets the bar of your personal credibility remarkably low.

My belief may be a "Night of the Living Dead" tale, but your belief is similar to you leaving home for work and once you leave, all of the furniture in your house begin to come to life and begin to talk, think, and have sex.

I fail to see how that belief is any more credible than my belief in the resurrection...but the difference is that, on my belief, there is a Grand Wizard (God) who, with his power, is allowing the furniture to come to life.

On your belief (naturalism), there is no Grand Wizard...yet the furniture, for whatever reason, just suddenly/gradually come to life and begins to talk, think, and reproduce.

Again, I fail to see how such a view has any more credibility/virtue than a Resurrection tale.

And lastly, this whole notion that the resurrection of the saints event in Matthew 27 was something similar to the Michael Jackson "Thriller" video is, I think, a misrepresentation of what occurred.

The saints didn't resurrect as "undead" zombies like you see in the movies...but rather, revitalized human beings. And everything that occurred during that event was divinely orchestrated by God, who has the power to give life, take life, and restore life.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The Gospel authors do not mention the body being relocated because the Gospel authors were unaware of it.
I wholeheartedly disagree.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: We must first keep in mind that the Gospels were written forty to sixty years after Jesus was executed
I would say between 25-35 years of the crucifixion, which would have been within the lifetime of the original apostles.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: , by anonymous individuals who almost certainly believed the details they were presenting to be true. Let me repeat that second part. By individuals who almost certainly believed the details they were presenting to be true
Sure, the authors of the Gospels are anonymous, but that doesn't mean we can't make a case (historically) for their authorship. Admittedly, we can't prove beyond a reasonable doubt who wrote anything in antiquity...however, we can clearly see what direction the evidence is pointing in.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: What the Gospels represent in the state of the rumor 40-60 years after Jesus was executed that began with the early disciples of Jesus six weeks after the execution.
I say 25-35 years after the crucifixion...and I am glad that you continually admit that the "claims" of the early disciples date back to six weeks after the crucifixion. Such an admission make me very, very glad.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And it is clear that Christians have supposed from the earliest of times that Joseph intended to bury Jesus in his new tomb. But that presents a real puzzle.
New tomb <---one that different from the one he originally placed Jesus' body in?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Tombs like Joseph's were hardly rare. In fact such tombs were considered status symbols among the rich. They were not constructed to be single occupancy tombs however. They were really family crypts, intended to contain multiple members of a family. The layout of such tombs, hand carved into living rock, were a flat ledge, surrounded by niches carved into the wall. The body would be washed and wrapped, and then left for a few weeks or months to allow the natural decaying process to occur. At that point a second ceremony for the body a deceased family member would be performed. The bones would be collected and placed into a stone ossuary, and the stone ossuary would be placed on a ledge. Usually the ossuary would have the person's name carved into it, and often other small works of art. These sorts of tombs were intended only for immediate family members. The only non blood family members who would be interred in this manner were the wives. Jesus, as a non blood family member, would have been extraordinarily out of place in Joseph's new family tomb.
Well, the narratives clearly state that JoA was a disciple of Jesus...Matt 27:57..

57 As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus.

So if Joseph was a disciple of Jesus and recognized him to be the Son of the Living God, then to hell with "immediate family" being placed in the tomb. The Son of God was the priority...obviously.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Worse, Jesus had had HIS OWN FAMILY about 65 miles away in Galilee.
About a three day walk. If Joseph really intended to honor Jesus, he would have had the body of Jesus shipped home to be interred with his own family. For the less than wealthy class, mountain caves and grottos were typically used for interring family members.
Maybe that is the way YOU think, but that isn't what JOSEPH thought.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Matthew 28:
[16] Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.


Presumably the mountain in question here was Mt. Tabor, which is traditionally believed by Christians to have been the site of the transfiguration.

Image

So if you want to locate the body of Jesus, my suggestion would be to go and search Mt. Tabor. Unfortunately a very brisk black market has developed for these ossuaries in recent times, as objects of art for the wealthy. The bones were often summarily cast aside.
I would go locate Jesus' body, but I don't want to look for the living among the dead. (Luke 24:5).
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: A point of agreement. Some people like to point out that Paul seemed to have been totally unaware of the tomb, since he never mentions it.
An indication that the story of the tomb formed post Paul. The tomb itself is perfectly plausible however, and I see no reason to dispute it.
Unaware of what about the tomb? The fact that it was empty, or its location?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: People lie, yes. I have already pointed out that Peter is one of the most notorious liars in all of western literature. And again I should point out that what we are dealing with here is the state of the story of the risen Jesus that was in circulation 40-60 years after Jesus was executed.
Yeah, but you already admitted that the story originated just mere 6 weeks after Jesus' death.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: This may be the most remarkable fools errand of all time. Certainly the most famous. Mark tells us that the women went out to the tomb at the crack of dawn on an urgent mission to slather more ointment on a corpse already slathered in 100 pounds of the stuff, knowing full well that they had no possible chance of getting to the body, based on the unrealistic hope that perhaps there might be some men who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night, who would kindly agree to move the stone for them. These are remarkable woman unlike any I have ever met. Or perhaps they thought they could prevail upon the guards to disobey their orders and break the seals, so that the women could finish their ever so important task of making sure that Jesus was well slathered up.
Well, it all worked itself out in the long run, didn't it?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: These passages simply scream lies and fabrication. If the women went out to the tomb that morning, it was because they were already aware that the tomb was open, and that the tomb was empty. Going out to visit the body knowing there was no possible way they could get at the body would mean that these women were too stupid to walk and chew gum at the same time.
The women were in a state of grief, accompanied by the state of "even though there is a huge stone covering the tomb, we will worry about how to open it once we get there, but the plan now is to deck Jesus' body out with the spices".

Or, if that answer doesn't suit your fancy, we can just charge their mentality to simply a mental state of grief (with no further explanation needed), and they simply weren't thinking rationality...which is hardly a place to judge anyone who has just been stricken with grief after the lost of a loved one.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Their real mission was to spread the word of the empty tomb.
Which could have been done without concocting a story that they went to visit a tomb that they knew would be sealed.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Because the claim that Jesus would return on the third day has little meaning without witnesses that can verify that the tomb was empty on the third day.
If the women were in cahoots with the disciples, everyone (all parties involved) would have known that the tomb was empty (after the disciples took the body)..so the story could have still been spread without the women actually going to the tomb.

Unless you are saying that the women didn't actually go to the tomb, but that was a lie as well?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: NO! I have said very plainly that the disciples did not have to steal the body. The body of Jesus was already in the legal possession of his disciples.
An assertion with no basis whatsoever.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Now let's look again at John 19:39 above. Nicodemus brought 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe. Myrrh is the very aromatic sap of the Commiphora family. Aloe is a succulent. Combining ground myrrh with aloe would produce a gum paste that would dry into a kind of a resin. 100 pounds would easily have been enough to coat the entire body. But what would be the point.

Coating the body might have served to retard the natural decaying process for a few days, and would have disguised the smell of decay. But there would have been no point in doing this if the intent was to inter the body permanently in Joseph's tomb. On the other hand, coating the body makes perfect sense if the intention was to move the body elsewhere. Given the state of the science of preservation at the time, which was minimal, coating the body for the purpose of moving it to another location makes perfect sense.
So, "I will coat the body with 100 pounds of x, because I will move soon move the body elsewhere".

Doesn't make much sense to me.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The women, who after all were also disciples of Jesus, were in on it. This brings us to the question of how many individual were aware that the body of Jesus was transported back to Galilee.
Baseless assertion.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And of course, the authors of the Gospels, fully believing that Joseph's tomb was always the intended place of interment for Jesus, don't give us those sorts of details. It's possible to reach a minimum number however. The eleven remaining apostles, Joseph and Nicodemus, the three Mary's, James the brother of John, and Mary the mother of Jesus. Less than 20.

Which brings up the question of Mary the mother of Jesus. When last we see Mary in the gospels, she is at the foot of the cross. But the Gospels never mention her again. So where DO we next encounter Mary the mother of Jesus?

Acts 1:
[14] These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.


With the apostles newly returned from Galilee. Because if you were going to transport your friend back home for a proper burial by his family, wouldn't you naturally take his mother with you?
The tomb was empty. No body to be transported.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
They sent the body home for burial. Happens all the time.
According to you, not according to the narrative.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote:

Matthew 27:
[60] And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.


Frank Morrison attempted to make a big deal out of the great stone in his book "Who Moved the Stone?" Consider that the Egyptian pyramids were already thousands of years old at the time of Jesus. Moving large stones was no great feat of engineering. Three or four capable men with levers could do the job.
They would have had to move fast, considering the very next day a guard was placed at the tomb.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The seals tell us specifically that the priests suspected that the tomb might already be empty.
Not according to the narrative.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Oddly enough you are one of the few Christian apologists that isn't incredulous at the prospect that the priests would not automatically open the tomb and make sure the body was actually there.
Maybe they would, maybe they wouldn't. Either way, the idea is speculative at best.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: They suspected a hoax was in the process remember. But I have already pointed out to you that it was a high hold day, prohibiting the priests from searching the tomb. The priests certainly had a reason for wanting to open the tomb and inspect it as soon as possible. Otherwise they were guarding an empty tomb.
It would have been prohibited by the priests...not prohibited by the Roman authorities.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: I specifically pointed out that the priest DID NOT open and inspect the tomb. They had no idea of what was inside.
Maybe that should have been their concern, then. But apparently, it wasn't.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And again, moving the stone was no great feat of engineering. Once the body was washed, wrapped and coated in myrrh and aloe gum paste, it's reasonable to suppose that the body began its journey at that point. Because haste was called for. First, they were dealing with a very perishable cargo. Second, the city was filled with tens of thousands of pilgrims for the Passover ceremonies who would quickly clog the roads returning to their homes. And third, there may have been some sense that the Jewish authorities might seek to get involved again. Which they did.

Starting off as soon as possible was the obvious solution. As soon as the body was ready to make the journey, off it went.
Speculation.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The tomb proved to be empty the next morning, so obviously, yes.
Thus...Resurrection.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: They lied. We are talking about the spreading of a false rumor here. So of course their claims of meeting the risen Jesus abound with stories of meeting the risen Jesus. But they lied.
The disciples taking the body and lying and Jesus' appearances doesn't explain the alleged appearances to Paul and James. Paul stated that Jesus also appeared to him, and he also stated that he met Peter personally..

Gal 1:18 "Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Cephas and stayed with him fifteen days."

So think about that; Paul stated that Jesus appeared to him...so when Paul met Peter, and said to Peter.. "Dudeee, Jesus appeared to me, too!!", Peter would have thought "Mannn, you are lying. You know how I know you are lying? Because me and the other apostles made up the entire story".

Nonsense. So again, the apostles taking the body and lying about the post-mortem appearances of Jesus doesn't account for the origin of the belief of Paul and James.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
How do we know they lied? Because they claimed a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew off up into the sky.


Based on the hypothesis that God exists and wanted to raise a corpse back to life..and allow it to fly off up into the sky.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Jesus died sometime around the ninth hour (3:00 PM.) It gets dark about 6:00 PM. The first three stars in the sky indicates the beginning of the new day. And this day was not only the Sabbath, but passover. So Joseph and the apostles, as jews, would not have been able to begin the journey immediately. But Joseph was a rich man, and Sabbath day prohibitions only apply to Jews. It was a common practice among Jews to employ Shabbos goy (Sabbath Goy) to do work on the sabbath when it was necessary. Joseph was not profiting from having the body of Jesus transported home, he was doing and act of kindness. And haste was imperative.


Point?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Only a relatively small number of individuals directly involved with moving the body would necessarily have known that Jesus had not actually returned from the dead. Perhaps less than 20.


Speculation.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
So, is this they way things actually played out? There is no way to know just how much of the story is valid. This particular accounting makes perfect sense however. It DOES NOT lead to supposing that a corpse came back to life and subsequently flew away I am afraid.


To me, it does. I believe that the Christian movement was based upon what was believed by the early apostles. You, however, believe that the apostles did not believe anything, but they were flat out, utterly lying. However, lying doesn't account for the belief of others (Paul/James).

That, accompanied by the fact that the historical evidence just simply doesn't fit your theory (that the body was moved and such).

It would seem that you are suggesting that the disciples moved the body, lied about the Resurrection, lied about the post-mortem appearances of Jesus, all while Paul is simultaneously hallucinating about a Resurrected Jesus.

Too far-fetched, and no evidence supports it. Sure, we can speculate about anything, but speculation isn't evidence.

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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #5

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 4 by For_The_Kingdom]

I am down with the flu. So my reply will be tardy as I have currently lost much of my will to live.
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #6

Post by For_The_Kingdom »

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
I am down with the flu. So my reply will be tardy as I have currently lost much of my will to live.
Get well soon, and as far as your will to live; before you give up that will, accept Christ :D

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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #7

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 4 by For_The_Kingdom]

After three weeks of being sick I am not sure that I am ready to take up the prospect of living again. But I will at least make the attempt to answer your post. My apologies that I have taken so long, but I really did lose all interest in much of anything.

Also, this reply is not actually as long as it appears to be. I have included numerous quotes and repeats from my earlier exchange.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
A natural explanation and a supernatural explanation do not start from a position of equal plausibility.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Welllll, it depends..
No, it doesn't "depend" at all. We now have regularly have natural explanations for everythings that occurs in our daily life. There was a time when events occurred which could not, at the time, be explained by any means other than a supernatural interpretation. THOSE DAYS ARE OVER. Everything that occurs we now understand to be a result of quantum mechanics in actions. Ignorance of the process of natural explanations does not alter the fact that natural explanations can be recognized in the overwhelming majority of cases. On the flip side, no actual supernatural occurrence has ever been undeniably and incontrovertible recognized to have taken place. NOT ONE! Ignorance of the process of the way things occur naturally is not evidence for the supernatural.

Natural explanations for events occur on a daily basis. No indisputable supernatural event or events can be demonstrated to have ever having occurred.

"Natural explanations and supernatural explanations do not start from a position of equal plausibility." Ignorance does NOT serve to level the playing field. Quite the opposite.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Matthew 27:
[52] And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
[53] And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.


In an account that failed to be recorded by a single other source, Matthew says that upon the death of Jesus hordes of dead people came up out of their graves and wandered into the city, where they were seen by many. Is it your opinion that his represents a perfectly straightforward historical account of an actual occurrence?
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Yes, it is my opinion that the resurrection of the saints is a historical account of an actual occurrence. That is because I have no reason to believe that the account is figurative/symbolic. However, I am open.
Are you familiar with the account of how Muhammad, in a display of his power, once split the moon into two halves?

Wilipedia
Muhammad Splits The Moon
The Hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder. But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, "This is (but) transient magic.

Early traditions and stories explain this verse as a miracle performed by Muhammad, following requests of some members of the Quraysh.[8][9] Most Muslim commentators accept the authenticity of those traditions[clarification needed]. The following verse 54:2, "But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, 'This is (but) transient magic'" is taken in the support of this view
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splitting_of_the_moon

Image

Do you also accept this account as historically accurate? Or is it true that there are simply accounts from the past that are too spectacularly unrealistic to be believable? And do you notice that the believability of a particular account seems to directly parallel your personal faith and therefore the personal natural of what you are prepared to believe in with complete and abject gullibility?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Presumably you also believe Matthew's "Night of the Living Dead" tale as well. Which sets the bar of your personal credibility remarkably low.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: It is also my belief that, if life from nonlife is possible (abiogenesis), then coming back to life is possible. To me, at face value, one isn't any more absurd than the other...but
the difference between my belief in the Resurrection (or resurrections in general) and your (naturalistic) belief that life arose from nonliving material...is that my belief is based on a supernatural hypothesis, while your belief is based on naturalism.
Atoms are made up of protons, neutrons and electrons. Protons, neutrons and electrons are non living. The basic elements are the result of protons, neutrons and electrons forming into groups of increasing complexity. A group that contains one proton has all of the attributes of hydrogen, whereas a group that contains two protons has all of the attributes of helium, and a group of that contains three protons has all the attributes of lithium... and so on right up the periodic chart. Basic elements are not living however.

Put these elements on slow simmer however, and over billions of years they begin to combine in very interesting ways. The human body is made up of about 20 of these basic elements, although many are present only in trace amounts. Because life, all life, is the result of the natural process of biochemistry in action. You may not find this answer to be especially fulfilling, or personally satisfying. But then you have your belief in the existence of zombies and the existence of various other supernatural boogeyman to add a little spice to your life. While I only have what science can establish to be true to sustain me. But empirical fact as opposed to childlike make believe has always proven to be sufficient.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: I admit that my belief needs to be explained beyond the natural realm, while naturalists believe that abiogenesis was a natural occurrence...meanwhile, I personally don't see how the belief in a resurrection is any more absurd than a belief in abiogenesis.
Your beliefs cannot be explained, or sustained, in any way other then by ultimately accepting them entirely on faith. Faith is a dogmatic dead end. As opposed to science, which continues to work things out.

You have disdain for the notion that life could have occurred without an intelligent designer. And so you postulate the existence of an intelligent designer who is NOT the result of an intelligent designer. If you would first serve to explain the rise of your undesigned intelligent designer, then you would at least have some real basis for claiming genuine disdain. As long as science continues to produce working technology based on scientific discoveries, then science will continue to have the upper hand in establishing what is true, while religion will continuously be relegated to an ongoing attempt to sustain ancient assumptions (make believe) as the explanation for everything. And that is ultimately a losing prospect.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: That being said, I can certainly can say the same thing to you; that your belief in abiogenesis sets the bar of your personal credibility remarkably low.
And yet life unmistakably does exist. As opposed to an uncreated Being who has limitless power, and yet is somehow responsible for this:
Image

Among other things. Heartbreaking as this may be, deformed children are perfectly explainable biologically. They are in fact predictable. If God CHOSE things to be this way,
then God has some explaining to do.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: My belief may be a "Night of the Living Dead" tale, but your belief is similar to you leaving home for work and once you leave, all of the furniture in your house begin to come to life and begin to talk, think, and have sex.
The fact that you made this statement and apparently consider it to be reasonable and somehow relevant to the discussion tells us all everything that really needs to be said about your understanding of the world we actually live in.

I am retired, by the way. So I am home most days. And so far my furniture has always unfailingly behaved within the limitations of my expectations.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: I fail to see how that belief is any more credible than my belief in the resurrection...but the difference is that, on my belief, there is a Grand Wizard (God) who, with his power,
is allowing the furniture to come to life.

On your belief (naturalism), there is no Grand Wizard...yet the furniture, for whatever reason, just suddenly/gradually come to life and begins to talk, think, and reproduce.

Again, I fail to see how such a view has any more credibility/virtue than a Resurrection tale.
Because you are largely ignorant of biology specifically and science in general. On the one hand ignorance is not the same thing as stupidity. We are all born ignorant. On the other hand, ignorance can be overcome. But not if one has chosen the rigid path of ancient superstitious dogma. Our ancient ancestors knew virtually nothing of the actual workings of the universe. So there is little reason to suppose that their musings would have much of anything to do with what is actually occurring.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: And lastly, this whole notion that the resurrection of the saints event in Matthew 27 was something similar to the Michael Jackson "Thriller" video is, I think, a misrepresentation of what occurred.

The saints didn't resurrect as "undead" zombies like you see in the movies...but rather, revitalized human beings. And everything that occurred during that event was divinely orchestrated by God, who has the power to give life, take life, and restore life.
So what happened to these "revitalized human beings?" As fully "revitalized human beings" they wouldn't simply go and crawl back into their graves, would they? Wouldn't they naturally attempt to return home? And when long dead great uncle Enoch, or grandma Huldah showed up at the door, that should have created something of a, ummm, stir one would think.

And yet oddly enough these two passages in Matthew represent the only indication that this monumental event ever occurred. It's almost as if the author of Matthew was the only one who knew about it.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The Gospel authors do not mention the body being relocated because the Gospel authors were unaware of it.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: I wholeheartedly disagree.
Establish a direct line between any of the Gospel authors and being a personal eyewitness to any of the events concerning the ministry and death of Jesus.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
We must first keep in mind that the Gospels were written forty to sixty years after Jesus was executed
For_The_Kingdom wrote: I would say between 25-35 years of the crucifixion, which would have been within the lifetime of the original apostles.
You WOULD say that of course. But then there are those darned facts to be reckoned with. According to the time frame established by the Gospels, which is all we have to work with concerning Jesus, since no one even bothered to record his existence during his lifetime, Jesus was executed circa 27-30 AD. Jesus was born, according to Gospel Matthew, at the end of the reign of Herod the Great. Herod died at a known time, 4 BC. Which puts Jesus' birth circa 6 or 5 BC. Jesus began his ministry at about age 30 (Luke 3:23). Three passovers are mentioned as having occurred during the time of Jesus' ministry. Which brings Jesus to the generally accepted age of about 33 when he was executed. Now do the math and you come up with a date of circa 27-30 AD for the time of the crucifixion. Gospel Mark mentions the stone by stone destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, which also occurred at a known date, 70 BC. So the first of the Gospels, Mark, was written 40 years AT LEAST, after Jesus was executed. It is generally accepted even by Christian scholars, that Gospel John was written near the end of the first century, although some scholars would place the date further into the second century. We are left with a date of around 70 years after the execution of Jesus for the writing of Gospel John.

Paul began writing his letters to the various churches circa the fifties. So the very earliest mention of the fact that Jesus even existed does not occur until about 20 years or so after Jesus was supposed to have been executed. But Paul himself never met the living Jesus, nor was he an eyewitness to ANY of the events portrayed in the Gospels. Nor is there any direct eyewitness link between any of the Gospels and the time of Jesus, other than Christian tradition.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And it is clear that Christians have supposed from the earliest of times that Joseph intended to bury Jesus in his new tomb. But that presents a real puzzle.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: New tomb <---one that different from the one he originally placed Jesus' body in?
No! Gospel John 19:42 indicates that Joseph's new tomb was located "nigh at hand" to the place where Jesus was executed. Given the hour, which was late in the day, Joseph's new tomb was the perfect place to take the body of Jesus to be washed and wrapped. But as I have pointed out, these tombs were really intended to be family crypts. Family only. Jewish tradition dictated that bodies be returned to their family for interment with other family members whenever possible. Putting Jesus in the crypt that Joseph had built for himself and his own family would have been unbecoming. Sending the body home to be buried by his family would have been the ultimate act of respect.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Well, the narratives clearly state that JoA was a disciple of Jesus...Matt 27:57..

57 As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus.

So if Joseph was a disciple of Jesus and recognized him to be the Son of the Living God, then to hell with "immediate family" being placed in the tomb. The Son of God was the priority...obviously.
What the Gospels do NOT say was that Joseph considered Jesus to be God Himself. You have to supply that interpretation yourself. And it's quite a Jump. One that Christians are still struggling to come to grips with today. But it also raises a very good point. At no time did Jesus himself, at least according to the Gospels, directly state that he was God. That would have been open blasphemy. And so preaching of the risen Jesus after his death would have put his followers on one level of legal status if they were simply proclaiming bodily resurrection, and another level entirely if they declared Jesus to be God Himself, since resurrection of the dead was a well established belief by the Pharisees, but was denied as being not founded in the Torah by non Pharisaical Jews. Claiming that Jesus was God Himself would have been open blasphemy however.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Worse, Jesus had had HIS OWN FAMILY about 65 miles away in Galilee. About a three day walk. If Joseph really intended to honor Jesus, he would have had the body of Jesus shipped home to be interred with his own family. For the less than wealthy class, mountain caves and grottos were typically used for interring family members.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Maybe that is the way YOU think, but that isn't what JOSEPH thought.
Neither of us can know what Joseph thought. Having the body of Jesus returned to his family for burial would have been the ultimate act of respect however. And within the means of Joseph the rich man. It cannot be stated as an undeniable fact that Joseph had the body of Jesus returned to his family however. What can be stated for a fact is that Joseph never intended his personal tomb to be the final resting place for the body of Jesus. Why? Because Joseph's tomb proved to be empty on Sunday morning. Having the body transported back to Galilee is simply the the most likely destination for the body. When we read that all of the apostles of Jesus journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion would seem to support this conclusion.

The conclusion that Joseph's tomb proved to be empty because the corpse came back to life and subsequently flew off up into the sky requires a childlike level of gullibility. A
level of gullibility more appropriate to first century BC superstitious ignorance and naivety than the 21st century.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
A point of agreement. Some people like to point out that Paul seemed to have been totally unaware of the tomb, since he never mentions it.
An indication that the story of the tomb formed post Paul. The tomb itself is perfectly plausible however, and I see no reason to dispute it.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Unaware of what about the tomb? The fact that it was empty, or its location?
When I say that the story of the tomb is plausible, I mean that I cannot dismiss it based on superstitious implausibility. I don't know how much of this story, if any, is true. Certain parts are clearly unreasonable and unrealistic however, and we have every right to dismiss them.

As for the location of the tomb, there are two primary contenders, the tomb at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and the Garden tomb located outside of the old city.

Which one represents the real tomb depends on one's personal level of gullibility.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Yeah, but you already admitted that the story originated just mere 6 weeks after Jesus' death.
Based on Acts, the rumor began to be spread starting about six weeks after the execution of Jesus. That story was NOT recorded at the time. What we are dealing with is the nature of the story as it was being presented during the second half of the first century. How close the original rumor as presented by the disciples six weeks after the death of Jesus and the story that was in general circulation 40-70 years later we can never know.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
This may be the most remarkable fools errand of all time. Certainly the most famous. Mark tells us that the women went out to the tomb at the crack of dawn on an urgent mission to slather more ointment on a corpse already slathered in 100 pounds of the stuff, knowing full well that they had no possible chance of getting to the body, based on the unrealistic hope that perhaps there might be some men who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night, who would kindly agree to move the stone for them. These are remarkable woman unlike any I have ever met. Or perhaps they thought they could prevail upon the guards to disobey their orders and break the seals, so that the women could finish their ever so important task of making sure that Jesus was well slathered up.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Well, it all worked itself out in the long run, didn't it?
Did it? Do you consider the current state of Christianity "all worked itself out in the long run?" Or are we really witnessing the result of 2,000 years of confusion, dispute and discord in action?


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
These passages simply scream lies and fabrication. If the women went out to the tomb that morning, it was because they were already aware that the tomb was open, and that the tomb was empty. Going out to visit the body knowing there was no possible way they could get at the body would mean that these women were too stupid to walk and chew gum at the same time.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: The women were in a state of grief, accompanied by the state of "even though there is a huge stone covering the tomb, we will worry about how to open it once we get there, but the plan now is to deck Jesus' body out with the spices".

Or, if that answer doesn't suit your fancy, we can just charge their mentality to simply a mental state of grief (with no further explanation needed), and they simply weren't
thinking rationality...which is hardly a place to judge anyone who has just been stricken with grief after the lost of a loved one.
Does a "state of grief" really explain going out to visit a body they knew they had no chance of gaining access to, on a mission they knew to be unnecessarily frivolous, based on the forlorn hope that they might encounter total strangers who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night who would agree to help them? Because it also sounds like someone's contrived load of the stuff that the little bird left on the rock. Now, combine this contrived story with the declaration that the corpse of Jesus came back to life and flew away, and we begin to see a distinct pattern of childlike self delusion developing.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Their real mission was to spread the word of the empty tomb.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Which could have been done without concocting a story that they went to visit a tomb that they knew would be sealed.
My whole point is that there was little to be gained by going out to a tomb to anoint a corpse they knew was sealed off by a large stone. The women went to the tomb because they were fully aware that the tomb was open, and the body was not there. Their purpose was to spread the word that the tomb was empty on the third day as promised.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: If the women were in cahoots with the disciples, everyone (all parties involved) would have known that the tomb was empty (after the disciples took the body)..so the story could have still been spread without the women actually going to the tomb.

Unless you are saying that the women didn't actually go to the tomb, but that was a lie as well?
The women were in "cahoots" with the individuals who were aware that the body had been moved. This necessarily involved the eleven remaining apostles, Joseph and Nicodemus, the three Marys, as well as Mary the mother of Jesus and almost certainly James the brother of Jesus. Less than 2 dozen people. The women were tasked with spreading the story of the empty tomb to others of Jesus' disciples to create the kernel of the story of the risen Jesus.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
NO! I have said very plainly that the disciples did not have to steal the body. The body of Jesus was already in the legal possession of his disciples.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: An assertion with no basis whatsoever.
Matthew 27:
[57] When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple:
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

Mark 15:
[43] Joseph of Arimathaea, and honourable counseller, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus.
[44] And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead.
[45] And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.

Luke 23:
[50] And, behold, there was a man named Joseph, a counseller; and he was a good man, and a just:
[51] (The same had not consented to the counsel and deed of them;) he was of Arimathaea, a city of the Jews: who also himself waited for the kingdom of God.
[52] This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.

John 19:
[38] And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and

Pilate gave him leave.
He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.[/quote]


Actually it's pretty much unanimous in the Gospels. The disciples of Jesus took possession of the body of Jesus. No one but the disciples of Jesus ever had clear possession of the body of Jesus.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So, "I will coat the body with 100 pounds of x, because I will move soon move the body elsewhere".
Coating the body in 100 pounds of expensive myrrh and aloe paste makes no sense if the body were simply intended to be left in Joseph's tomb. Coating the body in this manner would have served to semi-arrest some of the effects of putrefaction for a few days, and would have masked the odor of decay for a time. But that would have been entirely pointless if the body were simply intended to be left to the natural decaying process anyway. It makes perfect sense however if the intention was to send the body on a journey of a few days.

And this is what I mean when I say that the Gospel authors were not themselves eyewitness to the actual events they are detailing. Why for example would the author of Gospel John include details of the body of Jesus being coated in 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe? Because it was a bit of information that he had been told by others, and, fully believing that Jesus rose from the dead himself and having no reason to suppress information in his possession, he included this information in his account.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Doesn't make much sense to me.
Hordes of dead people coming up out of their graves also makes sense to you. A corpse coming back to life and flying away makes sense to you. Your twisted sense of reality is duly noted.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: The tomb was empty. No body to be transported.
Consider the following scenario. You are a police detective tasked with investigating an empty grave and a missing corpse. [A.] Is your first impression going to be that some living agent was involved? Or [B.], is your first impression going to be that the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord?

Please answer [A.] or [B.]. If you dare. But you will undoubtedly NOT dare. Because the answer is obvious.

The tomb that the priests took possession of on Saturday proved to be empty. THe followers of Jesus took possession of the body of Jesus on Friday afternoon. The obvious conclusion

is that someone had already moved the body elsewhere by Sunday morning.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: They would have had to move fast, considering the very next day a guard was placed at the tomb.
As I already pointed out, the possibility that the Jewish authorities might once again intervene should have been perfectly obvious to the disciples. Since they were dealing with a perishable cargo, haste was clearly called for. Not only the possibility that the Jewish authorities intervening, but the perspective of tens or hundreds of thousands of people returning from the Passover ceremonies and clogging the roads indicate a very pressing reason why the journey should have begun at the earliest possible moment.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The seals tell us specifically that the priests suspected that the tomb might already be empty.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Not according to the narrative.

What does the narrative tell us?


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Oddly enough you are one of the few Christian apologists that isn't incredulous at the prospect that the priests would not automatically open the tomb and make sure the body was actually there.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Maybe they would, maybe they wouldn't. Either way, the idea is speculative at best.
You are confronted with the story of an empty grave, and you have concluded that the grave is empty because the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord. What exactly does the term "speculative" mean to you?
For_The_Kingdom wrote: It would have been prohibited by the priests...not prohibited by the Roman authorities.
Being in the line of sight of a human corpse would have rendered the Jewish priests too ceremonially unclean to have participated in the Passover ceremonies, or to even enter the temple. A serious disability for the chief priests of the nation on passover. The ritual cleansing involved finding a perfect red heifer calf, reducing it to ash, and then bathing in the ashes. A process which could take days or weeks. The priests took the obvious course of action. They sealed the tomb and waited for the holy day to pass before investigating (or having the tomb investigated by someone familiar with Jesus) for the body of Jesus. And of course, the tomb proved to be empty.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
I specifically pointed out that the priest DID NOT open and inspect the tomb. They had no idea of what was inside.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Maybe that should have been their concern, then. But apparently, it wasn't.
Apparently, according to you, they were so concerned that they first went to Pilate, then went to a place as unclean as a graveyard on a high holy day, but were not really concerned with whether the body was actually in the tomb or not.

The fact that they placed seals on the tomb indicates that they were concerned. But the seals were not placed on the tomb to protect the tomb from being opened. The guards were there for that.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And again, moving the stone was no great feat of engineering. Once the body was washed, wrapped and coated in myrrh and aloe gum paste, it's reasonable to suppose that the body began its journey at that point. Because haste was called for. First, they were dealing with a very perishable cargo. Second, the city was filled with tens of thousands of pilgrims for the Passover ceremonies who would quickly clog the roads returning to their homes. And third, there may have been some sense that the Jewish authorities might seek to get involved again. Which they did.

Starting off as soon as possible was the obvious solution. As soon as the body was ready to make the journey, off it went.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Speculation.
Josephus indicated that the city had a million pilgrims for the high holy day. That is undoubtedly and overestimate. But tens of thousands or even a few hundred thousand is a possibility.

The fact that the priests took physical possession of the tomb on Saturday, and the tomb proved to be empty Sunday morning is inherent in the story, and not speculation. Speculation is concluding that the tomb was empty because the corpse came back to life and left.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The tomb proved to be empty the next morning, so obviously, yes.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: The disciples taking the body and lying and Jesus' appearances doesn't explain the alleged appearances to Paul and James. Paul stated that Jesus also appeared to him, and he also stated that he met Peter personally..

Gal 1:18 "Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Cephas and stayed with him fifteen days."

So think about that; Paul stated that Jesus appeared to him...so when Paul met Peter, and said to Peter.. "Dudeee, Jesus appeared to me, too!!", Peter would have thought "Mannn, you are lying. You know how I know you are lying? Because me and the other apostles made up the entire story".

Nonsense. So again, the apostles taking the body and lying about the post-mortem appearances of Jesus doesn't account for the origin of the belief of Paul and James.
Thus...Resurrection.
I have already explained Paul's experience during his trip to Damascus based on his collapse because of massive dehydration. Do I really need to explain it again?

After Jesus' unfair and dishonorable execution, James became one of the main spokesmen for the divine nature of his brother's earthly mission. But then James had known Jesus his entire life, and prior to his brother's crucifixion neither James or any of Jesus' other siblings indicated that Jesus was in any way special. If you want an explanation of James' conversion after the crucifixion, explain how James and Jesus' other brothers and sisters grew up in the presence of God and yet seemed to have had no clue.

Also, Peter and James were not much impressed with Paul initially.

Galations 2
[11] But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
[12] For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
[13] And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
[14] But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?


Wikipedia
Incident at Antioch
The Incident at Antioch was an Apostolic Age dispute between the apostles Paul and Peter which occurred in the city of Antioch around the middle of the first century. The primary source for the incident is Paul's Epistle to the Galatians 2:11–14. Since Ferdinand Christian Baur, scholars have found evidence of conflict among the leaders of Early Christianity; for example James D. G. Dunn proposes that Peter was a "bridge-man" between the opposing views of Paul and James the brother of Jesus.[1] The final outcome of the incident remains uncertain, resulting in several Christian views of the Old Covenant to this day.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incident_at_Antioch

But Paul finally overcame this dispute, at least to some degree. How? He brought money into the church.

1Cor.16
[1] Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.
[2] Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.
[3] And when I come, whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem.
[4] And if it be meet that I go also, they shall go with me.

2Cor.8
[1] Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;
[2] How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.
[3] For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves;
[4] Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.
[5] And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.
[6] Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also.
[7] Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also.
[8] I speak not by commandment, but by occasion of the forwardness of others, and to prove the sincerity of your love.
[9] For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.

Rom.15
[25] But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.
[26] For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.
[27] It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things.

Acts 24
[17] Now after many years I came to bring alms to my nation, and offerings.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Based on the hypothesis that God exists and wanted to raise a corpse back to life..and allow it to fly off up into the sky.


Based on the hypothesis that Santa exists and has magic, then reindeer can easily be explained flying off up into the sky. And yet no one has actually produced a single flying reanimated corpse, or a single flying reindeer. Nor a flying beast named Al-Baraq either I am afraid. Just to annoy the Muslims.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Jesus died sometime around the ninth hour (3:00 PM.) It gets dark about 6:00 PM. The first three stars in the sky indicates the beginning of the new day. And this day was not only the Sabbath, but passover. So Joseph and the apostles, as jews, would not have been able to begin the journey immediately. But Joseph was a rich man, and Sabbath day prohibitions only apply to Jews. It was a common practice among Jews to employ Shabbos goy (Sabbath Goy) to do work on the sabbath when it was necessary. Joseph was not profiting from having the body of Jesus transported home, he was doing and act of kindness. And haste was imperative.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Point?


Argument?

Haste was called for. The sort of haste which meant starting the journey at the first possible possibility. Which would have been once the corpse was fully washed and prepared for the trip.

Here, for example:

Matthew 27:
[60] And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.



Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Only a relatively small number of individuals directly involved with moving the body would necessarily have known that Jesus had not actually returned from the dead. Perhaps less than 20.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: Speculation.


This is true. There is no way of determining how many individuals were aware that the body had been moved to Galilee for burial.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: To me, it does. I believe that the Christian movement was based upon what was believed by the early apostles.


The Christian movement was based on rumors spread by the early disciples of Jesus. I suspect that this is true. There never has been a single Christian movement however, even from early times. Christianity has always been a polyglot of disparate claims and beliefs. Which is shown very clearly in the many disparate claims and beliefs concerning Jesus that were recorded in ancient times.

1 and 2 Clement
Shepherd of Hermas
Didache
Epistle of Barnabas
Apocalypse of Peter
Third Epistle to the Corinthians
Gospel of Thomas
Oxyrhynchus Gospels
Egerton Gospel
Fayyum Fragment
Dialogue of the Saviour
The Gospel of the Ebionites ("GE") – 7 quotations by Epiphanius.
The Gospel of the Hebrews ("GH") – 1 quotation ascribed to Cyril of Jerusalem, plus GH 2–7 quotations by Clement, Origen, and Jerome.
The Gospel of the Nazarenes
Gospel of the Ebionites
Gospel of the Hebrews
Gospel of the Nazoraeans
Secret Gospel of Mark
Gospel of Marcion
Gospel of Judas
Gospel of Thomas
Gospel of Marcion (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Mani (3rd century)
Gospel of Apelles (mid-late 2nd century)
Gospel of Bardesanes (late 2nd - early 3rd century)
Gospel of Basilides (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Peter
Gospel of Nicodemus (also called the "Acts of Pilate")
Pseudo-Cyril of Jerusalem, On the Life and the Passion of Christ
Gospel of Bartholomew
Questions of Bartholomew
Resurrection of Jesus
Apocryphon of James (also called the "Secret Book of James")
Book of Thomas the Contender
Dialogue of the Saviour
Gospel of Judas (also called the "Gospel of Judas Iscariot")
Gospel of Mary (also called the "Gospel of Mary Magdalene")
Gospel of Philip
Greek Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians)
The Sophia of Jesus Christ
Coptic Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Apocalypse of Paul)
Gospel of Truth
Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Apocalypse of Peter)
Pistis Sophia
Second Treatise of the Great Seth
Apocryphon of John (also called the "Secret Gospel of John")
Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Greek Gospel of the Egyptians)
Trimorphic Protennoia
Acts of Andrew
Acts of Barnabas
Acts of John
Acts of the Martyrs
Acts of Paul
Acts of Paul and Thecla
Acts of Peter
Acts of Peter and Andrew
Acts of Peter and Paul
Acts of Peter and the Twelve
Acts of Philip
Acts of Pilate
Acts of Thomas
Acts of Timothy
Acts of Xanthippe, Polyxena, and Rebecca
Epistle of Barnabas
Epistles of Clement
Epistle of the Corinthians to Paul
Epistle of Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans
Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallians
Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians
Epistle to Diognetus
Epistle to the Laodiceans (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Epistle to Seneca the Younger (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Third Epistle to the Corinthians - accepted in the past by some in the Armenian Orthodox church.
Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Coptic Apocalypse of Paul)
Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter)
Apocalypse of Pseudo-Methodius
Apocalypse of Thomas (also called the Revelation of Thomas)
Apocalypse of Stephen (also called the Revelation of Stephen)
First Apocalypse of James (also called the First Revelation of James)
Second Apocalypse of James (also called the Second Revelation of James)
The Shepherd of Hermas
The Descent of Mary

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Testament_apocrypha
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

For_The_Kingdom
Guru
Posts: 1916
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 3:29 pm

Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #8

Post by For_The_Kingdom »

Tired of the Nonsense wrote: After three weeks of being sick I am not sure that I am ready to take up the prospect of living again.
No pun intended? LOL.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: No, it doesn't "depend" at all. We now have regularly have natural explanations for everythings that occurs in our daily life.
Ok, so based on that implication; we have no natural explanations of life from nonlife in our daily life.

Catch my drift?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: There was a time when events occurred which could not, at the time, be explained by any means other than a supernatural interpretation. THOSE DAYS ARE OVER. Everything that occurs we now understand to be a result of quantum mechanics in actions.
Ok, so using quantum mechanics, go in a lab and get me life from nonliving material. Can you do that? Nope. Then appealing to quantum mechanics is cannot save you (as salvation comes through Jesus Christ alone).
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Ignorance of the process of natural explanations does not alter the fact that natural explanations can be recognized in the overwhelming majority of cases.
Sure, and the overwhelming majority of those cases are questions like "how does the universe work?". However, the questions that I have are questions like "Where did you universe come from?'

And such questions are not included in that "majority" of cases that natural explanations can provide answers for.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: On the flip side, no actual supernatural occurrence has ever been undeniably and incontrovertible recognized to have taken place. NOT ONE! Ignorance of the process of the way things occur naturally is not evidence for the supernatural.
Origin of Universe
Origin of Language
Origin of Consciousness
Origin of Life

Creationism provides the best explanation of those four questions of origins.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Natural explanations for events occur on a daily basis.
Exactly, and it isn't a coincidence that abiogenesis doesn't happen on a daily basis and there is currently no natural explanation for it.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: No indisputable supernatural event or events can be demonstrated to have ever having occurred.
There is no indisputable evidence that nature can create life from nonlife, either..but that doesn't stop unbelievers from believing it.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Are you familiar with the account of how Muhammad, in a display of his power, once split the moon into two halves?

Wilipedia
Muhammad Splits The Moon
The Hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder. But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, "This is (but) transient magic.

Early traditions and stories explain this verse as a miracle performed by Muhammad, following requests of some members of the Quraysh.[8][9] Most Muslim commentators accept the authenticity of those traditions[clarification needed]. The following verse 54:2, "But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, 'This is (but) transient magic'" is taken in the support of this view
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splitting_of_the_moon

And?

Image

Do you also accept this account as historically accurate?
Nope.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Or is it true that there are simply accounts from the past that are too spectacularly unrealistic to be believable?
I agree, some accounts from the past are too spectacularly unrealistic to be believable...like some accounts which involve life coming from nonlife, and reptiles evolving into birds.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And do you notice that the believability of a particular account seems to directly parallel your personal faith and therefore the personal natural of what you are prepared to believe in with complete and abject gullibility?
And those who believe in life from nonlife aren't gullible?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Atoms are made up of protons, neutrons and electrons. Protons, neutrons and electrons are non living.
I am talking about sentient life.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The basic elements are the result of protons, neutrons and electrons forming into groups of increasing complexity. A group that contains one proton has all of the attributes of hydrogen, whereas a group that contains two protons has all of the attributes of helium, and a group of that contains three protons has all the attributes of lithium... and so on right up the periodic chart. Basic elements are not living however.
I repeat; I am talking about sentient life.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Put these elements on slow simmer however, and over billions of years they begin to combine in very interesting ways.
So basically; given enough time, anything can happen. That is no difference in a Christian telling you; given enough time, Jesus will return.

Sounds like foolishness, doesn't it? Well, I am glad we feel the same way about each other's ideas.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The human body is made up of about 20 of these basic elements, although many are present only in trace amounts. Because life, all life, is the result of the natural process of biochemistry in action. You may not find this answer to be especially fulfilling, or personally satisfying.
I sure don't. I expect naturalistic claims to be backed up by good, empirical science; not by bio-babble.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: But then you have your belief in the existence of zombies and the existence of various other supernatural boogeyman to add a little spice to your life.
So, lets see how rational my belief is...

My belief: A zombie came to life and painted the Mona Lisa.
Your belief: Mother Nature (mindless and blind) painted the Mona Lisa.

Hmm..I don't know...my belief just seems more rational...zombies and all.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: While I only have what science can establish to be true to sustain me. But empirical fact as opposed to childlike make believe has always proven to be sufficient.
Well, let me know when you have some empirical facts that can back up your naturalistic beliefs.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Your beliefs cannot be explained, or sustained, in any way other then by ultimately accepting them entirely on faith.
Reasonable faith. I have what I believe to be good, genuine reasons for believing the way that I believe..which are reasons based upon science, philosophy, mathematics, and history.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Faith is a dogmatic dead end. As opposed to science, which continues to work things out.
A reality which began to exist (science and nature) can't tell me anything about questions related to absolute origins.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: You have disdain for the notion that life could have occurred without an intelligent designer. And so you postulate the existence of an intelligent designer who is NOT the result of an intelligent designer.

If you would first serve to explain the rise of your undesigned intelligent designer, then you would at least have some real basis for claiming genuine disdain.
So basically, you are asking me to explain the origins of the Uncaused Cause? SMH.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: As long as science continues to produce working technology based on scientific discoveries, then science will continue to have the upper hand in establishing what is true, while religion will continuously be relegated to an ongoing attempt to sustain ancient assumptions (make believe) as the explanation for everything. And that is ultimately a losing prospect.
Newsflash: There was no science/nature before the universe began to exist.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And yet life unmistakably does exist. As opposed to an uncreated Being who has limitless power, and yet is somehow responsible for this:
Image

Among other things. Heartbreaking as this may be, deformed children are perfectly explainable biologically. They are in fact predictable. If God CHOSE things to be this way,
then God has some explaining to do.
First, explain to me why creating deformed children is "bad".
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The fact that you made this statement and apparently consider it to be reasonable and somehow relevant to the discussion tells us all everything that really needs to be said about your understanding of the world we actually live in.

I am retired, by the way. So I am home most days. And so far my furniture has always unfailingly behaved within the limitations of my expectations.
Same thing. Your furniture is inanimate, right? I gave you a scenario at which this inanimate matter (your furniture), came to life. I mean after all, something similar happened some x billion years ago, and I am sure you believe that. So, what is the intrinsic difference?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Because you are largely ignorant of biology specifically and science in general.
I am not ignorant, I just don't have the faith you have in biology, apparently.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: On the one hand ignorance is not the same thing as stupidity. We are all born ignorant. On the other hand, ignorance can be overcome. But not if one has chosen the rigid path of ancient superstitious dogma.
Or if one has chosen the rigid path of voodoo science.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Our ancient ancestors knew virtually nothing of the actual workings of the universe.
But they sure did "know" that the universe had a beginning..which has since been confirmed by contemporary cosmology. So science has just now caught up with religion.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: So there is little reason to suppose that their musings would have much of anything to do with what is actually occurring.
Again, they were claiming that the universe was finite, while your guys (scientists) were running around claiming that it was eternal. Guess what? Your guys were wrong.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: So what happened to these "revitalized human beings?" As fully "revitalized human beings" they wouldn't simply go and crawl back into their graves, would they?
Sure they would. They would ultimately die again.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Wouldn't they naturally attempt to return home? And when long dead great uncle Enoch, or grandma Huldah showed up at the door, that should have created something of a, ummm, stir one would think.
I don't know...but there is one Resurrection that caused quite the stir..and that is the one of Jesus Christ.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And yet oddly enough these two passages in Matthew represent the only indication that this monumental event ever occurred. It's almost as if the author of Matthew was the only one who knew about it.
All four Gospels knew about Jesus' Resurrection. Lets talk about that one.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Establish a direct line between any of the Gospel authors and being a personal eyewitness to any of the events concerning the ministry and death of Jesus.
We get the authorship of the Gospels from the Early Church fathers, beginning in the first century CE. When we piece together all of their accounts, we find that the authorship of the Gospels were all attributed to the Apostles (Matthew, John) or friends of the Apostles (Mark, Luke).

So obviously, two of the alleged authors weren't even apostles, so for the Church Fathers to attribute sacred/holy religious texts to them seems genuinely honest.

Second, unless one is regarding the Gospels as complete fiction, if you honestly read the books you can clearly see that the details of the context is coming from eyewitness accounts..by people who were there.

Third, my claim isn't necessarily that the Gospels were directly hand-written by the alleged authors, but at the very least it is from the TESTIMONY of the alleged authors...as that is where the story originated from.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: You WOULD say that of course. But then there are those darned facts to be reckoned with. According to the time frame established by the Gospels, which is all we have to work with concerning Jesus, since no one even bothered to record his existence during his lifetime, Jesus was executed circa 27-30 AD. Jesus was born, according to Gospel Matthew, at the end of the reign of Herod the Great. Herod died at a known time, 4 BC. Which puts Jesus' birth circa 6 or 5 BC. Jesus began his ministry at about age 30 (Luke 3:23). Three passovers are mentioned as having occurred during the time of Jesus' ministry. Which brings Jesus to the generally accepted age of about 33 when he was executed. Now do the math and you come up with a date of circa 27-30 AD for the time of the crucifixion. Gospel Mark mentions the stone by stone destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, which also occurred at a known date, 70 BC.
I actually agree with everything you said here...and because you acknowledge the Gospels (all except John) mention of the Temple's destruction, and its actual destruction date (70 CE); you actually help make my point for me.

Jesus predicted the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem in the Synoptic Gospels..so obviously, if the Gospels were written after 70 CE, you would think that books would mention a fulfilled prophecy of this magnitude..but they didn't; because it didn't happen yet.

So therefore, I rationally argue that none of the Gospels can be said to have been written after 70 CE...so then you just work back from there. Paul allegedly died in 67 CE..but he was still alive at the ending of Acts, which means that Acts could not have been written after 67 CE.

But Acts is part 2 to Luke, which means that Luke predates Acts, so Luke cannot be said to have been written prior to 67 CE. And if Luke "borrowed" material from Mark, Mark cannot be said to have been written prior to 67 CE.

I think Mark was written between 59-63 CE with the other two synoptics' being written no later than 67 CE.

That is, in my opinion, a legitimate cumulative case.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: So the first of the Gospels, Mark, was written 40 years AT LEAST, after Jesus was executed.
I say between 25-30, according to the case that one can make. But then again, hypothethically speaking, even IF Mark was written 40 years after Jesus' execution; so what? So what? That is still within the lifetime of the Apostles. There are people who were alive during JFK' assassination, who are STILL living today and can testify to you the events of that day.

Same thing with MLK. Reverend Jesse Jackson, who was part of MLK's inner circle, is still living today and was an eyewitness account to MLK's assassination...and Rev. Jackson is alive today, 50 years after MLK's death, and can give his testimony..and even write a book about it if it wanted to.

So, if Rev. Jackson can do it, why can't Matthew? So, your continual pointing out "40 years after" is irrelevant, as long as it can be said to be within the lifetime of the apostle who wrote it.

Second, we are talking about when the books were WRITTEN, not when the stories ORIGINATED. I may write about a significance event in my life 30 years after it happened...but when I write it has no barren on when the event occurred.

Again, irrelevant.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: It is generally accepted even by Christian scholars, that Gospel John was written near the end of the first century, although some scholars would place the date further into the second century. We are left with a date of around 70 years after the execution of Jesus for the writing of Gospel John.
The Gospel of John is more tricky, indeed.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Paul began writing his letters to the various churches circa the fifties. So the very earliest mention of the fact that Jesus even existed does not occur until about 20 years or so after Jesus was supposed to have been executed.
Again, you are mentioning when the books were written, which is contrast to when the stories originated. Sure, Paul may have written about Christ 20 years after the fact, but the Pre-Pauline creed that he claimed to have been "passed down" to him (1Corin 15:3-7) was all an early (3-5 years) statement of faith.

Just because it was written x amount of many years into the future says nothing about when the belief originated, which was much earlier.

And that fifties timeframe you gave (particularly 1Corinthians) predate the Gospels. So here we have Paul talking about Jesus, his burial, his Resurrection, his post-mortem appearances, and the 12 disciples....before the biographies of Jesus (Gospels) even existed.

Early stuff.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: But Paul himself never met the living Jesus, nor was he an eyewitness to ANY of the events portrayed in the Gospels.
But he was a Jesus contemporary, though...and claimed that Jesus appeared to him as well.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Nor is there any direct eyewitness link between any of the Gospels and the time of Jesus, other than Christian tradition.
Why would Christian tradition say that Mark and Luke wrote Gospels, if they were merely just ascribing names to their holy books? Why not say Peter wrote it? Why not James? Surely Peter and James holds more weight than Mark and Luke, of whom neither were apostles of Christ.

Makes no sense, unless they (early church) were simply telling it like it is.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: No! Gospel John 19:42 indicates that Joseph's new tomb was located "nigh at hand" to the place where Jesus was executed. Given the hour, which was late in the day, Joseph's new tomb was the perfect place to take the body of Jesus to be washed and wrapped. But as I have pointed out, these tombs were really intended to be family crypts. Family only. Jewish tradition dictated that bodies be returned to their family for interment with other family members whenever possible. Putting Jesus in the crypt that Joseph had built for himself and his own family would have been unbecoming. Sending the body home to be buried by his family would have been the ultimate act of respect.
And my response to this was; The Son of the Living God needed to be buried, and a tomb was nearby (John 19:42), so, to hell with Jewish tradition.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: What the Gospels do NOT say was that Joseph considered Jesus to be God Himself.
?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: You have to supply that interpretation yourself. And it's quite a Jump. One that Christians are still struggling to come to grips with today. But it also raises a very good point. At no time did Jesus himself, at least according to the Gospels, directly state that he was God.
Actually, he did. John 8:48-59..the famous "I AM" verse. The Pharisees obviously knew what he was proclaiming, and you can tell based on their reaction.

Second, Jesus received worship by his followers (Matt 28:9). Yet, we all know that only God is worthy of worship.

Jesus is called God by Thomas (John 20:28). Yet, calling another man "God" is obviously blasphemous in the Jewish community.

Stephen prayed to Jesus (Acts 7:59). We should only pray to God, as only he can hear prayers.

Now, the reason Jesus didn't go around saying "I am God, worship me!!" was obviously because he humbled himself (Phil 2:59), taking the form of a man/servant and being in subordination to the Father.

If you are truly a humble person, you don't need to go around bragging. You know who you are and what you can do.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: That would have been open blasphemy.
So would openly calling Jesus God (John 20:28), but Jesus didn't take exception to this by saying to Thomas, "Don't get too carried away, Thomas. I know that you are happy to see me, but calling me God, that is just all the way wrong, dawgggg", which is what Jesus would have undoubtedly said, if Thomas was in error.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And so preaching of the risen Jesus after his death would have put his followers on one level of legal status if they were simply proclaiming bodily resurrection, and another level entirely if they declared Jesus to be God Himself, since resurrection of the dead was a well established belief by the Pharisees, but was denied as being not founded in the Torah by non Pharisaical Jews. Claiming that Jesus was God Himself would have been open blasphemy however.
It would have been open blasphemy if it wasn't TRUE. It was true, therefore, it wasn't blasphemy.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Neither of us can know what Joseph thought.
Well, we know what Joseph did, according to the Scriptures.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Having the body of Jesus returned to his family for burial would have been the ultimate act of respect however. And within the means of Joseph the rich man. It cannot be stated as an undeniable fact that Joseph had the body of Jesus returned to his family however.
Too speculative and out of touch with Scripture.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: What can be stated for a fact is that Joseph never intended his personal tomb to be the final resting place for the body of Jesus. Why? Because Joseph's tomb proved to be empty on Sunday morning.
Resurrection.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Having the body transported back to Galilee is simply the the most likely destination for the body. When we read that all of the apostles of Jesus journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion would seem to support this conclusion.
Again, Jesus told them to go to Galilee, so that is why the Apostles "journeyed to Galilee".
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The conclusion that Joseph's tomb proved to be empty because the corpse came back to life and subsequently flew off up into the sky requires a childlike level of gullibility.
It is what they believed. Just like the conclusion that inanimate matter came to life and subsequently began to talk requires a childlike level of gullibility...but it is what naturalists believe.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: When I say that the story of the tomb is plausible, I mean that I cannot dismiss it based on superstitious implausibility. I don't know how much of this story, if any, is true. Certain parts are clearly unreasonable and unrealistic however, and we have every right to dismiss them.
And if we (believers) find all of the parts reasonable and realistic, then we have every right to accept it.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: As for the location of the tomb, there are two primary contenders, the tomb at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and the Garden tomb located outside of the old city.

Which one represents the real tomb depends on one's personal level of gullibility.
Location of tomb: somewhere in Jerusalem. Good enough for me.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Based on Acts, the rumor began to be spread starting about six weeks after the execution of Jesus. That story was NOT recorded at the time. What we are dealing with is the nature of the story as it was being presented during the second half of the first century.
Right, and the "second half of the first century" was still during the lifetime of the Apostles. Unless you are stating that they were supposed to have pen & pad with them at all times ready to take out and record any time something significant occurred.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: How close the original rumor as presented by the disciples six weeks after the death of Jesus and the story that was in general circulation 40-70 years later we can never know.
Which is why we can appeal to Paul, who WAS a contemporary to Jesus and the original apostles, even having met with Peter and James. He would have known what the "original" story was because he was a living testament to the times and people of the times...which is not to mention the pre-Pauline creed which, again, is an early testament of faith directly from the original apostles.

So we are not talking about a belief system that originated some 40-70 years after the fact here.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Did it? Do you consider the current state of Christianity "all worked itself out in the long run?" Or are we really witnessing the result of 2,000 years of confusion, dispute and discord in action?
Christianity is the worlds largest religion in terms of followers. So yeah, it worked out according to popularity/followers.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Does a "state of grief" really explain going out to visit a body they knew they had no chance of gaining access to , on a mission they knew to be unnecessarily frivolous, based on the forlorn hope that they might encounter total strangers who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night who would agree to help them? Because it also sounds like someone's contrived load of the stuff that the little bird left on the rock. Now, combine this contrived story with the declaration that the corpse of Jesus came back to life and flew away, and we begin to see a distinct pattern of childlike self delusion developing.
Ok, lets see how the women's mentality lines up with typical, everyday stuff. Ok, so where I work, the building is enclosed with an electric gate blocking the entrance. Unless you have your badge, you can't get inside the gate.

So, if I mistakenly leave my badge in the building and go home, but forget that I left something in the building that I REALLY need, there is no way to get inside the gate, is there? (there isn't).

So, depending on what I left in the building and how bad I need it, I may be tempted to go to the gate.. hoping, just hoping, that someone just HAPPENS to be inside the gate to let me in.

Now, what are the chances of this happening? Slim? Maybe. Impossible? No. In my desperation, I may be tempted to take the chance of going to the gate, just to see if I can hit the jackpot.

And if it can happen with me, it can happen with the women. And according to the narrative, they hit the jackpot.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: My whole point is that there was little to be gained by going out to a tomb to anoint a corpse they knew was sealed off by a large stone. The women went to the tomb because they were fully aware that the tomb was open, and the body was not there. Their purpose was to spread the word that the tomb was empty on the third day as promised.
And my point is, if they knew the tomb was empty (as you are suggesting), then there would be little/no need to physically go to the tomb. They could still "spread the word that the tomb was empty on the third day as promised" without actually going to it.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The women were in "cahoots" with the individuals who were aware that the body had been moved. This necessarily involved the eleven remaining apostles, Joseph and Nicodemus, the three Marys, as well as Mary the mother of Jesus and almost certainly James the brother of Jesus. Less than 2 dozen people. The women were tasked with spreading the story of the empty tomb to others of Jesus' disciples to create the kernel of the story of the risen Jesus.
Unsupported speculative assertion.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Matthew 27:
[57] When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple:
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

Mark 15:
[43] Joseph of Arimathaea, and honourable counseller, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus.
[44] And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead.
[45] And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.

Luke 23:
[50] And, behold, there was a man named Joseph, a counseller; and he was a good man, and a just:
[51] (The same had not consented to the counsel and deed of them;) he was of Arimathaea, a city of the Jews: who also himself waited for the kingdom of God.
[52] This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.

John 19:
[38] And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and

Pilate gave him leave.
He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Actually it's pretty much unanimous in the Gospels. The disciples of Jesus took possession of the body of Jesus. No one but the disciples of Jesus ever had clear possession of the body of Jesus.
You said "disciples" of Jesus, which suggests plurality...which would lead anyone who read it to conclude you are talking about the main 12 disciples of Jesus. But instead, you are talking about one particular disciple of Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea, of whom was not included in the 12.

Dont make it seem as if the "disciples" (the 12) took the body from Pilate's custody, when only one disciple (not one of the 12) actually took the body.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Coating the body in 100 pounds of expensive myrrh and aloe paste makes no sense if the body were simply intended to be left in Joseph's tomb. Coating the body in this manner would have served to semi-arrest some of the effects of putrefaction for a few days, and would have masked the odor of decay for a time. But that would have been entirely pointless if the body were simply intended to be left to the natural decaying process anyway. It makes perfect sense however if the intention was to send the body on a journey of a few days.
Even if that was the case, we can charge that to a simple ignorance on the part of everyone (all of the believers) who simply weren't expecting a Resurrection after the death of Jesus.

If you (Joseph) know the body will be Resurrected, then you wouldn't have gone through the trouble of delaying the decaying process, ESPECIALLY if you are aware of the prophecy of the body "not seeing decay"..

Psalm 16:9-10 "9Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely. 10For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.


Which is the same Scripture Peter mentioned as fulfilled in Acts 2:26-27..

26Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices, my body also will live in hope, 27because You will not abandon my soul to Hades, nor will You let Your Holy One see decay.


Obviously, with hindsight being 20/20, the Psalms scripture made sense to Peter at that moment, but obviously not during the time of the crucifixion.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And this is what I mean when I say that the Gospel authors were not themselves eyewitness to the actual events they are detailing. Why for example would the author of Gospel John include details of the body of Jesus being coated in 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe?
Um, because that is what happened.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Hordes of dead people coming up out of their graves also makes sense to you. A corpse coming back to life and flying away makes sense to you. Your twisted sense of reality is duly noted.
"People can't come back to life, but nonliving matter can certainly come to life". Yet, my sense of reality is twisted. LOL.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Consider the following scenario. You are a police detective tasked with investigating an empty grave and a missing corpse. [A.] Is your first impression going to be that some living agent was involved? Or [B.], is your first impression going to be that the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord?

Please answer [A.] or [B.]. If you dare. But you will undoubtedly NOT dare. Because the answer is obvious.
LOL. Funny you give such a scenario. For the record, no, my first impression would not be that the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord.

But then again, that wasn't the first impression of the women, NOR the disciples, either.

John 20:1-2 "Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!�

So, when Mary discovered the tomb to be empty, was her "first impression": Resurrection!!!

No, it wasn't. She offered a simpler explanation, namely: someone took the body out of the tomb!!

And what about Peter, when Mary told him (and the other disciple) that the tomb was empty, was Peter's first impression: Resurrection!!!

No, it wasn't. Scripture clearly stated that "They still did not know from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead".

So, in a nut shell: You, myself, Mary, Peter, and John...we all agree, that if we go to an empty grave, our first impression wouldn't be: Resurrection.

Glad we can all agree on something, here. LOL.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The tomb that the priests took possession of on Saturday proved to be empty. THe followers of Jesus took possession of the body of Jesus on Friday afternoon. The obvious conclusion

is that someone had already moved the body elsewhere by Sunday morning.
That is what you say. I say: Resurrection.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: As I already pointed out, the possibility that the Jewish authorities might once again intervene should have been perfectly obvious to the disciples. Since they were dealing with a perishable cargo, haste was clearly called for. Not only the possibility that the Jewish authorities intervening, but the perspective of tens or hundreds of thousands of people returning from the Passover ceremonies and clogging the roads indicate a very pressing reason why the journey should have begun at the earliest possible moment.
Fail to see the relevance to what I said.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: What does the narrative tell us?
The narrative tells us that the tomb was sealed and a guard was placed there, in case the disciples decided to come and steal the body. (Matt 27:62-66).
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: You are confronted with the story of an empty grave, and you have concluded that the grave is empty because the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord.
And I believe this based on background information that God exists and is the author of life..and if God can create life, he can also restore life.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: What exactly does the term "speculative" mean to you?
The term "speculative" mean anything like ideas regarding the natural occurrence of nonliving matter coming to life and beginning to talk to me.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Being in the line of sight of a human corpse would have rendered the Jewish priests too ceremonially unclean to have participated in the Passover ceremonies, or to even enter the temple. A serious disability for the chief priests of the nation on passover. The ritual cleansing involved finding a perfect red heifer calf, reducing it to ash, and then bathing in the ashes. A process which could take days or weeks. The priests took the obvious course of action. They sealed the tomb and waited for the holy day to pass before investigating (or having the tomb investigated by someone familiar with Jesus) for the body of Jesus. And of course, the tomb proved to be empty.
It sure did.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Apparently, according to you, they were so concerned that they first went to Pilate, then went to a place as unclean as a graveyard on a high holy day, but were not really concerned with whether the body was actually in the tomb or not.
Then they were incompetent, according to your standards. Take that up with them, not me.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The fact that the priests took physical possession of the tomb on Saturday, and the tomb proved to be empty Sunday morning is inherent in the story, and not speculation.
There are lots of things that are inherent in the story that you don't have a problem shoving to the side and replacing it with your own, speculative theories.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Speculation is concluding that the tomb was empty because the corpse came back to life and left.
Speculation is also the idea that inanimate matter, which was once empty of sentient life, suddenly came to life and began to talk.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The tomb proved to be empty the next morning, so obviously, yes.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: I have already explained Paul's experience during his trip to Damascus based on his collapse because of massive dehydration. Do I really need to explain it again?
You explained it? Oh yeahh, I remember when you explained it...was that the time you claimed that Paul was hallucinating because he had not ate or drank anything for 3 days...only to find out when we actually read the Scriptures that Paul had the "hallucination" FIRST, and THEN had no food or drink for 3 days?

If the information about the theory is erroneous, then what does that say about the theory itself? Just as erroneous.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: After Jesus' unfair and dishonorable execution, James became one of the main spokesmen for the divine nature of his brother's earthly mission. But then James had known Jesus his entire life, and prior to his brother's crucifixion neither James or any of Jesus' other siblings indicated that Jesus was in any way special. If you want an explanation of James' conversion after the crucifixion, explain how James and Jesus' other brothers and sisters grew up in the presence of God and yet seemed to have had no clue.
Some people won't believe regardless of the evidence, apparently. Judas knew Jesus, too. Yet, betrayed him.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Also, Peter and James were not much impressed with Paul initially.
They were skeptical of his past.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Galations 2
[11] But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
[12] For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
[13] And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
[14] But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?


Wikipedia
Incident at Antioch
The Incident at Antioch was an Apostolic Age dispute between the apostles Paul and Peter which occurred in the city of Antioch around the middle of the first century. The primary source for the incident is Paul's Epistle to the Galatians 2:11–14. Since Ferdinand Christian Baur, scholars have found evidence of conflict among the leaders of Early Christianity; for example James D. G. Dunn proposes that Peter was a "bridge-man" between the opposing views of Paul and James the brother of Jesus.[1] The final outcome of the incident remains uncertain, resulting in several Christian views of the Old Covenant to this day.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incident_at_Antioch
I am not in 100% agreement with anyone. Are you?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Based on the hypothesis that Santa exists and has magic, then reindeer can easily be explained flying off up into the sky.
Conceivable. As conceivable as inanimate matter coming to life.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: And yet no one has actually produced a single flying reanimated corpse, or a single flying reindeer. Nor a flying beast named Al-Baraq either I am afraid. Just to annoy the Muslims.
Nor nonliving material suddenly beginning to talk.
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: The Christian movement was based on rumors spread by the early disciples of Jesus. I suspect that this is true. There never has been a single Christian movement however, even from early times.
So, the book of Acts isn't true?
Tired of the Nonsense wrote: Christianity has always been a polyglot of disparate claims and beliefs. Which is shown very clearly in the many disparate claims and beliefs concerning Jesus that were recorded in ancient times.

1 and 2 Clement
Shepherd of Hermas
Didache
Epistle of Barnabas
Apocalypse of Peter
Third Epistle to the Corinthians
Gospel of Thomas
Oxyrhynchus Gospels
Egerton Gospel
Fayyum Fragment
Dialogue of the Saviour
The Gospel of the Ebionites ("GE") – 7 quotations by Epiphanius.
The Gospel of the Hebrews ("GH") – 1 quotation ascribed to Cyril of Jerusalem, plus GH 2–7 quotations by Clement, Origen, and Jerome.
The Gospel of the Nazarenes
Gospel of the Ebionites
Gospel of the Hebrews
Gospel of the Nazoraeans
Secret Gospel of Mark
Gospel of Marcion
Gospel of Judas
Gospel of Thomas
Gospel of Marcion (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Mani (3rd century)
Gospel of Apelles (mid-late 2nd century)
Gospel of Bardesanes (late 2nd - early 3rd century)
Gospel of Basilides (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Peter
Gospel of Nicodemus (also called the "Acts of Pilate")
Pseudo-Cyril of Jerusalem, On the Life and the Passion of Christ
Gospel of Bartholomew
Questions of Bartholomew
Resurrection of Jesus
Apocryphon of James (also called the "Secret Book of James")
Book of Thomas the Contender
Dialogue of the Saviour
Gospel of Judas (also called the "Gospel of Judas Iscariot")
Gospel of Mary (also called the "Gospel of Mary Magdalene")
Gospel of Philip
Greek Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians)
The Sophia of Jesus Christ
Coptic Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Apocalypse of Paul)
Gospel of Truth
Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Apocalypse of Peter)
Pistis Sophia
Second Treatise of the Great Seth
Apocryphon of John (also called the "Secret Gospel of John")
Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Greek Gospel of the Egyptians)
Trimorphic Protennoia
Acts of Andrew
Acts of Barnabas
Acts of John
Acts of the Martyrs
Acts of Paul
Acts of Paul and Thecla
Acts of Peter
Acts of Peter and Andrew
Acts of Peter and Paul
Acts of Peter and the Twelve
Acts of Philip
Acts of Pilate
Acts of Thomas
Acts of Timothy
Acts of Xanthippe, Polyxena, and Rebecca
Epistle of Barnabas
Epistles of Clement
Epistle of the Corinthians to Paul
Epistle of Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans
Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallians
Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians
Epistle to Diognetus
Epistle to the Laodiceans (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Epistle to Seneca the Younger (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Third Epistle to the Corinthians - accepted in the past by some in the Armenian Orthodox church.
Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Coptic Apocalypse of Paul)
Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter)
Apocalypse of Pseudo-Methodius
Apocalypse of Thomas (also called the Revelation of Thomas)
Apocalypse of Stephen (also called the Revelation of Stephen)
First Apocalypse of James (also called the First Revelation of James)
Second Apocalypse of James (also called the Second Revelation of James)
The Shepherd of Hermas
The Descent of Mary

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Testament_apocrypha
And through a selective process, all of those books and epistles were weeded out, and the Books that compile the Bible made the playoffs, while others didn't.

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Tired of the Nonsense
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Post #9

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 8 by For_The_Kingdom]
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Ok, so based on that implication; we have no natural explanations of life from nonlife in our daily life.

Catch my drift?
Actually we have every indication that life arose naturally as a process of biochemistry in action. Believers simply refuse to accept it, much in the same way they choose to deny evolution, and the one time existence of dinosaurs.

UNDERSTANDING EVOLUTION
How did life originate?

Living things (even ancient organisms like bacteria) are enormously complex. However, all this complexity did not leap fully-formed from the primordial soup. Instead life almost certainly originated in a series of small steps, each building upon the complexity that evolved previously:

Simple organic molecules were formed.
Simple organic molecules, similar to the nucleotide shown below, are the building blocks of life and must have been involved in its origin. Experiments suggest that organic molecules could have been synthesized in the atmosphere of early Earth and rained down into the oceans. RNA and DNA molecules — the genetic material for all life — are just long chains of simple nucleotides.

Image

Replicating molecules evolved and began to undergo natural selection.
All living things reproduce, copying their genetic material and passing it on to their offspring. Thus, the ability to copy the molecules that encode genetic information is a key step in the origin of life — without it, life could not exist. This ability probably first evolved in the form of an RNA self-replicator — an RNA molecule that could copy itself.

Image

Many biologists hypothesize that this step led to an "RNA world" in which RNA did many jobs, storing genetic information, copying itself, and performing basic metabolic functions.

Today, these jobs are performed by many different sorts of molecules (DNA, RNA, and proteins, mostly), but in the RNA world, RNA did it all.

Self-replication opened the door for natural selection. Once a self-replicating molecule formed, some variants of these early replicators would have done a better job of copying themselves than others, producing more "offspring." These super-replicators would have become more common — that is, until one of them was accidentally built in a way that allowed it to be a super-super-replicator — and then, that variant would take over. Through this process of continuous natural selection, small changes in replicating molecules eventually accumulated until a stable, efficient replicating system evolved.

Replicating molecules became enclosed within a cell membrane.
The evolution of a membrane surrounding the genetic material provided two huge advantages: the products of the genetic material could be kept close by and the internal environment of this proto-cell could be different than the external environment. Cell membranes must have been so advantageous that these encased replicators quickly out-competed "naked" replicators. This breakthrough would have given rise to an organism much like a modern bacterium.
genetic material enclosed in membranes
Image

Some cells began to evolve modern metabolic processes and out-competed those with older forms of metabolism. Up until this point, life had probably relied on RNA for most jobs (as described in Step 2 above). But everything changed when some cell or group of cells evolved to use different types of molecules for different functions: DNA (which is more stable than RNA) became the genetic material, proteins (which are often more efficient promoters of chemical reactions

than RNA) became responsible for basic metabolic reactions in the cell, and RNA was demoted to the role of messenger, carrying information from the DNA to protein-building centers in the cell. Cells incorporating these innovations would have easily out-competed "old-fashioned" cells with RNA-based metabolisms, hailing the end of the RNA world.

DNA contains instructions. RNA copies DNA. Proteins are made from copies instructions.
https://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibra ... soflife_04

Believers of course simply wish this information away, partly because they do not understand it, and partly because it conflicts with their make believe. SOme have even gone so far as to deny that ancient fossils are real. Dinosaurs are fake, they claim.

RANKER.COM
Ridiculous Dinosaur Conspiracy Theories That People Somehow Believe Are True

Apparently, we’re not getting the real story when it comes to dinosaurs. While most people on planet Earth have been content since childhood to take the word of paleontologists, botanists, and researchers from a wide variety of fields, there are a few brave creative thinkers across the world who simply aren’t buying in. According to them, dinosaurs are just a giant lie made up to turn the La Brea Tar Pits into a popular tourist attraction. We’re all just cogs in the dino-industrial complex.

A simple glance through the Internet reveals dozens of examples of blogs, message boards, and even reputable news outlets that are willing to believe in dinosaur conspiracy theories with only a tenuous ounce of “proof.� In the absence of a walking, roaring, towering specimen to point to as definitive proof, scientists have been forced to go head to head with individuals of various intelligence levels who have some pretty unusual ideas about what happened millions of years ago.

Were dinosaurs real? That blissfully ignorant question is just the tip of the iceberg, as everyone from NBA stars to your local janitor have contributed their “expertise� to various conspiracy theories. Here, for your consideration, are some of the craziest things people believe about dinosaurs.

Satan Planted Fossils To Test The Faith Of Christians

Young Earth Creationists Believe That Men And Dinos Co-Existed

The Masons Invented Dinosaurs Because They Needed A Species To Tie Evolution Together

If Oil Is Made Of Dinosaurs, Why Aren’t Dinosaurs Found With Oil?
https://www.ranker.com/list/dinosaur-co ... in-andress

And so on into the deep recesses of believer foolishness. It has now become popular among conservatives, who tend to be staunch believers, to declare that any information which disagrees with their world view is "fake news." Actual physical evidence, like the T-Rex named Sue, be damned.

Wikipedia
Sue (dinosaur)
"Sue" is the nickname given to FMNH PR 2081, which is the largest, most extensive and best preserved Tyrannosaurus rex specimen ever found at over 90% recovered by bulk.[2] It was discovered in August 1990, by Sue Hendrickson, a paleontologist, and was named after her. After ownership disputes were settled, the fossil was auctioned in October 1997, for US $8.3 million, the highest amount ever paid for a dinosaur fossil,[5] and is now a permanent feature at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois
Image

Admittedly the skull on Sue that is displayed in the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago is a reproduction, because the original skull was crushed into hundreds of pieces and reconstruction was considered impractical. Virtually the the entire rest of the skeletal structure of Sue is made up of genuine fossilized bone, however. Dinosaurs were real, and once existed long ago at a time in which the earth was quite different than today. I stopped believing in Christianity when I was 13 because I considered it silly. Denying physical evidence because it conflicts with one's discredited worldview is part of what I mean. This is also why Christianity is failing in the west. The lengths to which believers are
forced to go to sustain their ancient superstitious beliefs have opened the beliefs themselves to ridicule. There is currently a widening chasm of modern educated individuals, and those who prefer to continue to wrap themselves in ancient ignorance.

Oil is NOT "made up of dinosaurs," by the way. Oil is the remains of ancient plant life.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Ok, so using quantum mechanics, go in a lab and get me life from nonliving material. Can you do that? Nope. Then appealing to quantum mechanics is cannot save you (as salvation comes through Jesus Christ alone).
The basic nature of quantum mechanics is the result of the observed fact that certain fundamental particles vibrate at frequencies that are arbitrarily referred to positive or
negative. Oppositely charged particles are attracted to each other, but particles with like charges are repelled by each other. This attraction/repulsion process causes constant movement. It is responsible for all change. And over time arranges and rearranges the basic elements into ever more complicated compounds.

You may not find this answer spiritually comforting. Reality is under no obligation to be spiritually comforting.

Wikipedia
Biochemistry
Biochemistry, sometimes called biological chemistry, is the study of chemical processes within and relating to living organisms.[1] By controlling information flow through biochemical signaling and the flow of chemical energy through metabolism, biochemical processes give rise to the complexity of life. Over the last decades of the 20th century,
biochemistry has become so successful at explaining living processes that now almost all areas of the life sciences from botany to medicine to genetics are engaged in biochemical research.[2] Today, the main focus of pure biochemistry is on understanding how biological molecules give rise to the processes that occur within living cells, which in turn relates greatly to the study and understanding of tissues, organs, and whole organisms[4]—that is, all of biology.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

There is nothing to be saved FROM, by the way. The concept of original sin was invented by believers. Saved from death? All living things die. Billy Graham just died. No one wants to die, but make believe cannot change factual reality. Believing that an invisible part of you will go to dwell in an invisible place to be with your invisible friends cannot change factual reality. And the truth of factual reality is that all living things die eventually. I will be turning seventy later this year, but I have long ago accepted the inevitability of my own death. You will notice that everyone goes through the process of dying, irrespective of their religious beliefs. Or whether they have any religious beliefs.

There is absolutely no reason to suppose that there is any experience at all to being dead however. Anymore than one experienced the various things that occurred before they were born. It's called non existence. Non existence is not scary, because fear is an emotion, and things which no longer exist have no capacity for emotion. I don't make the rules, and I am certainly not offering you a better deal on anything. I have no use for self deception, however, and the observation that all living things die is incontrovertible.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Sure, and the overwhelming majority of those cases are questions like "how does the universe work?". However, the questions that I have are questions like "Where did you universe come from?'

And such questions are not included in that "majority" of cases that natural explanations can provide answers for.
I have already answered these questions. The universe works on the basis of quantum mechanics. Particles with positive and negative charges endlessly reacting to each other. These charges (vibrations) represent the basic form of energy, and the universe IS made up of energy. Energy endlessly changing and interacting with itself.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
On the flip side, no actual supernatural occurrence has ever been undeniably and incontrovertible recognized to have taken place. NOT ONE! Ignorance of the process of the way things occur naturally is not evidence for the supernatural.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Origin of Universe
Origin of Language
Origin of Consciousness
Origin of Life
Creationism provides the best explanation of those four questions of origins.
Origin of the universe.
Our universe began from the explosion of highly compressed energy.

Origin of Language
I don't even understand why this is a question. Most animals have worked out ways of communicating with each other to some degree. Many use sounds. Humans have the capacity to have turned communication into a very precise art form.

Origin of consciousness
Take a simple planarian flatworm. It has two eye-cells in its head called ocelli. Basically all the ocelli can do is detect light, and as a result, some amount of movement. The flatworm spends its life deciding whether to hide from predators by remaining in the shadows, or search for food by moving into the light. This is rudimentary consciousness. The rest is evolution.

Life is the result of the combination of basic elements into increasingly more complex organic compounds through biochemistry. The basic elements are increasingly complex groups of atoms that are the result of quantum mechanics at work. Quantum mechanics works because energy exists and interacts with itself.

Creationism provides an explanation for the existence of life through the recourse to magic (omnipotent God), but provides no explanation for the creation or existence of the proposed creator. Ultimately CREATIONISM EXPLAINS NOTHING!

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Natural explanations for events occur on a daily basis.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Exactly, and it isn't a coincidence that abiogenesis doesn't happen on a daily basis and there is currently no natural explanation for it.


Early life was produced at a time when conditions on the earth were very different than they are now. There was no free oxygen in the atmosphere, for example. Oxygen is a byproduct (a waste product) of photosynthesis. While it is not out of the realm of possibility that entirely new and (VERY) primitive forms of life might continue to be produced in certain places on the earth today, such microorganisms would have to survive against predation by organisms with an evolutionary head start of billions of years.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
No indisputable supernatural event or events can be demonstrated to have ever having occurred.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: There is no indisputable evidence that nature can create life from nonlife, either..but that doesn't stop unbelievers from believing it.


There is no indisputable evidence that dinosaurs once existed either... if one is determined to deny all the physical evidence.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Are you familiar with the account of how Muhammad, in a display of his power, once split the moon into two halves?

Wikipedia
Muhammad Splits The Moon
The Hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder. But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, "This is (but) transient magic.

Early traditions and stories explain this verse as a miracle performed by Muhammad, following requests of some members of the Quraysh.[8][9] Most Muslim commentators accept the authenticity of those traditions[clarification needed]. The following verse 54:2, "But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say, 'This is (but) transient magic'" is taken in the support of this view
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splitting_of_the_moon

Do you also accept this account as historically accurate?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Nope.


Doesn't that tell us pretty clearly that you only choose to believe the unrealistic claims of the religious belief that you happened to be born into? I don't believe it either. Why?
because it is perfectly silly. That really is about as far as the question needs to be carried. It's silly, and it is overwhelmingly clear that it almost certainly is not true.

Yet is is an undeniable fact to Muslims. And if billions of Muslims can be fooled into believing in apparent nonsense, what does that say for the potential for billions of Christians to be fooled into believing apparent nonsense in exactly the same way, and for exactly the same reasons?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And do you notice that the believability of a particular account seems to directly parallel your personal faith and therefore the personal natural of what you are prepared to believe in with complete and abject gullibility?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: And those who believe in life from nonlife aren't gullible?


Life is composed of non life. That is a simple fact. Life is constructed from the basic elements formed into organic compounds by the unstoppable force of change created by quantum mechanics. Belief and direct observation go hand in hand, you see. Scientists have learned to use these observations to clone exact copies of other living creatures. When was the last time Jesus returned as has been promised for the last 2,000 years?

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Atoms are made up of protons, neutrons and electrons. Protons, neutrons and electrons are non living.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I am talking about sentient life.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The basic elements are the result of protons, neutrons and electrons forming into groups of increasing complexity. A group that contains one proton has all of the attributes of hydrogen, whereas a group that contains two protons has all of the attributes of helium, and a group of that contains three protons has all the attributes of lithium... and so on right up the periodic chart. Basic elements are not living things however.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I repeat; I am talking about sentient life.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Put these elements on slow simmer however, and over billions of years they begin to combine in very interesting ways.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So basically; given enough time, anything can happen. That is no difference in a Christian telling you; given enough time, Jesus will return.

Sounds like foolishness, doesn't it? Well, I am glad we feel the same way about each other's ideas.


Basically, anything that does not violate natural law has a statistical chance of occurring, given enough time. However, when a living thing dies, its various particles are taken up for use in other ways. Every particle of your body has been a part of other things in the past, and will go on to be part of other things still after you die. So, will Jesus return, given enough time? No. Reassembling all of those original particles would violate natural law. It would be supernatural.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The human body is made up of about 20 of these basic elements, although many are present only in trace amounts. Because life, all life, is the result of the natural process of biochemistry in action. You may not find this answer to be especially fulfilling, or personally satisfying.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I sure don't. I expect naturalistic claims to be backed up by good, empirical science; not by bio-babble.


That "bio-babble represents, of course, the empirical explanations to questions that you don't want to believe in anyway. You may not understand the techno-babble that went into the conception and construction of that computer you find yourself sitting at either. But there you are, using the darned thing. I am constantly charigined by people who have no real idea of the way modern technology works, who manage to use the fruit of that technology in their everyday life, and yet dispute the truth of the science and the knowledge of the scientists that made the clearly working technology possible. There needs to be a new word coined for this self deceptive sort of deliberately sustained ignorance. Because I can't think of a common English word that really explains the condition. There ARE such words of course, but DC&R has rules.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
But then you have your belief in the existence of zombies and the existence of various other supernatural boogeyman to add a little spice to your life.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So, lets see how rational my belief is...

My belief: A zombie came to life and painted the Mona Lisa.
Your belief: Mother Nature (mindless and blind) painted the Mona Lisa.

Hmm..I don't know...my belief just seems more rational...zombies and all.


Do you believe in the existence of devils and demons?

I have a story to add in here. I live in a big old 100 year old two story house. It has a couple of rooms in the basement and rooms in the attic. I have lived here for more than 30 years. One of the things I noticed not long after moving in, was the irregular occurrence of flies gathering in back porch. Hundred of big, fat, flies. My back porch is fully enclosed by windows, and has a door to the outside. It is also the access way to my basement. There is nothing ever remotely resembling anything edible on my back porch however, so he cause of the flies was a puzzle. I would simply open the door and let them out whenever this occurred, but I had no idea of the cause.

When I told my story to others, numerous of my acquaintances reminded my that fly infestation was one of the signs of demonic activity in the movies and book, "The Amityville Horror," which was presented as a true story. One couple I know immediately concluded that I had a demon in my basement, and that I should move immediately. As a side note this couple rarely lives in a house more than five years because their brand new homes routinely become infested with "ghosts." But I don't believe in ghosts, and I don't believe in demons. I knew there was a natural cause to the fly situation, I just didn't know what it was.

Ultimately I figured it out. I am pretty handy at fixing things, and I hate calling others to do a job I can do myself. One day as I was crawling through the crawlspace under my house on a plumbing project, I noticed a dead rat. And the rat was crawling with maggots. A little gross perhaps, but it explained my fly problem.

Hundred year old houses often are of lathe and plaster construction. Mine is. Lathe and plaster walls are typically hollow. Rats get into the house and scamper up and down the hollow walls. The sound of rats in the walls tends to make wives cranky. I know it makes my wife cranky. Cranky wives can spoil a perfectly good mood. So husbands who don't like being bitc... um... barked at constantly put poison down in the basement to eliminate the rats. Rats eat the poison and go off to die. Flies smell the decomposing rats and lay their eggs in the body, resulting in maggots. Maggots turn into flies and fly for the nearest light. Which in my case is my back porch. Now I have my answer.

A superstitious person probably would have moved. But a person who believes in reason, and that there are always natural answers to things, even if when one is not immediately known, does not give way to superstition and imagination. And most of all unreasoning ignorance.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Well, let me know when you have some empirical facts that can back up your naturalistic beliefs.


I have been doing that very thing. But giving out empirical facts proves to be pointless to those determined to dismiss anything they don't prefer to agree with as being "fake news."

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Your beliefs cannot be explained, or sustained, in any way other then by ultimately accepting them entirely on faith.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Reasonable faith. I have what I believe to be good, genuine reasons for believing the way that I believe..which are reasons based upon science, philosophy, mathematics, and history.


Everything you believe is a product of imagination and a vast interconnected network of unfounded assumptions and baseless assertions. What scientific evidence do you propose proves your claim that a corpse came back to life and flew away? That claim is a veritable snarled network of claims and assertions each of which when actually tracked down and considered, are invariably shown to be based on still other claims and assertions, none of which have any actual basis of support reason or the physical evidence.

There is nothing "reasonable" in believing that a corpse came back to life and flew away, simply because some of his followers asserted that it was so. You are conflicting "reason" with blind faith and abject gullibility.

The bottom line is, if there were REALLY a convincing case for Christianity there would be NO atheists and no need for this forum. Christian apologetics was developed to try to plug the holes in the doctrine. But the world is rapidly becoming too sophisticated for ancient superstitious nonsense.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Faith is a dogmatic dead end. As opposed to science, which continues to work things out.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: A reality which began to exist (science and nature) can't tell me anything about questions related to absolute origins.


I already have. The universe began as an explosion of energy. Energy cannot be created or destroyed. It does interact with itself however.

There are no "absolute origins. None that can be observed, at least. Everything is the result of conditions that preceded it. At least for as far back as we can observe. Beyond that is the realm of imagination and make believe.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: Newsflash: There was no science/nature before the universe began to exist.


How did you reach this conclusion? If wouldn't be through the process of imagination and make believe, would it? Our universe seems to have begun at a particular moment. If energy cannot be created or destroyed, than before the universe existed, energy existed. It was simply taking other forms. Possibly, other forms of universes.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: First, explain to me why creating deformed children is "bad".


Well, first we need to define "bad." Good and bad are opinions. Deformities are generally considered to be bad because they reduce the quality of life of the individual, if the individual survives at all. This tends correspond with that general of that which is "bad," or unfortunate. I am not insinuating that the afflicted individual is "bad." If an
omnipotent God creates deformed children than He is a lousy omnipotent God. When biology creates deformed children it is just a harsh reminder that biology is NOT the product of intelligent design. It is the nature of biology to be random. This drives evolution. It is also responsible for deformed children. For every billion deformed children, there is always the potential for a uniquely advanced child.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Same thing. Your furniture is inanimate, right? I gave you a scenario at which this inanimate matter (your furniture), came to life. I mean after all, something similar happened some x billion years ago, and I am sure you believe that. So, what is the intrinsic difference?


The possibility of my furniture coming to life is roughly comparable to the possibility of me jumping up into the air and springing completely off of the planet. The uncertainty
principle indicates that given an unlimited amount of time, these things could occur if they are possible. Because we are only fallible humans, we do not possess the

superpower required to know with 100% certainty what is ultimately possible or impossible. We do observe however that certain things appear to be true without exception. These are known as the laws of physics. We don't know with absolute certainty that the laws of physics are inviolate. All we know is that so far they are observed to be inviolate. Jumping up into the air and springing completely off of the planet, or having my furniture come to life would violate the known laws of physics. Just as stopping the sun in the sky for 24 hours, or a flying reanimated corpse, appear to violate the known laws of physics. Which gives us every reason to consider such claims as nonsense.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Because you are largely ignorant of biology specifically and science in general.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I am not ignorant, I just don't have the faith you have in biology, apparently.


You have carefully read the Bible. You have attended church services in which the doctrine of your specific belief system was carefully explained to you. If you have never been exposed to the in depth study of biology in this same manner, you are largely ignorant of biology.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
On the one hand ignorance is not the same thing as stupidity. We are all born ignorant. On the other hand, ignorance can be overcome. But not if one has chosen the rigid path of ancient superstitious dogma.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Or if one has chosen the rigid path of voodoo science.


The same voodoo science that has created working technology, and has placed working robots on Mars (one of the most spectacular achievements of my lifetime in my opinion).

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Our ancient ancestors knew virtually nothing of the actual workings of the universe.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: But they sure did "know" that the universe had a beginning..which has since been confirmed by contemporary cosmology. So science has just now caught up with religion.


It seemed to our ancestors that certain things, at least, had discreet beginnings. They arose from nothing. Aristotle for example thought that things like maggots, seeming to spontaneously appear in exposed meat, was the result of “spontaneous generation.� There is NO SUCH THING as spontaneous generation. Everything is the result of events that occurred before, or more succinctly, the realization that for every effect there is an earlier cause. Based on all observation, there is no reason to suppose that the beginning of the universe was the result of “spontaneous generation,� but was instead the result of events that occured prior to the big bang. What that might have been cannot be directly observed of course. What occurred prior to the big bang CAN be postulated however. Nor is such a postulation a mere "guesstimate." Because it is observed in our own universe that under certain conditions, massive amounts of matter can collapse into an incredibly compressed state. Reaching a point, theoretically at least, where all space is eliminated, and time slows to a near halt. Physicists refer to this state as a singularity. It is a theoretical condition in which all things become one, and there is no variation of any kind. Much like one's concept of nothing. In our universe all of this information disappears into something we call a black hole, and a black hole is a massive amount of information that has completely disappeared from out plane of existence. The question "where did this information go," is mirrored in the question "where did all of the information that makes up our universe come from? The answer in both cases appears to be, somewhere else!
Image
Hypothetical illustration of a black hole gravity well.

It was never sciences intention to "catch up" with religion. Science is only interested in working out the truth of how the universe operates. As one might suspect, science is
discovering answers that are distinctly different from the assumptions that the ancients were pulling out of their, um, imaginations. Which is why we have technology that the ancients did not possess.

Again, they were claiming that the universe was finite, while your guys (scientists) were running around claiming that it was eternal. Guess what? Your guys were wrong.

The ancients thought that heaven and the heavens were the same thing. They thought that heaven was covered in a veil of the few thousand stars that can been seen with the naked eyes. They also thought the sun and stars revolved around the earth. The ancients were limited by their technology. Einstein thought the universe was constant. Until shown the evidence that he was wrong by Edwin Hubble. Science is getting better. But Einstein has been dead for more than 60 years now. A lot has been learned during those 60 years.
Image

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
So what happened to these "revitalized human beings?" As fully "revitalized human beings" they wouldn't simply go and crawl back into their graves, would they?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Sure they would. They would ultimately die again.


You wouldn't be ASSUMING here would you? And my point is, no one but the author of Gospel Matthew seemed to be aware of this abrupt infestation of dead people returned from the grave. Because no one else ever mentioned it.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Wouldn't they naturally attempt to return home? And when long dead great uncle Enoch, or grandma Huldah showed up at the door, that should have created something of a, ummm, stir one would think.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And yet oddly enough these two passages in Matthew represent the only indication that this monumental event ever occurred. It's almost as if the author of Matthew was the only one who knew about it.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: All four Gospels knew about Jesus' Resurrection. Lets talk about that one.
I don't know...but there is one Resurrection that caused quite the stir..and that is the one of Jesus Christ.


Caused such a stir that no one bothered to write about it at the time it was supposed to have occurred. Or even make a single reference to Jesus during his lifetime. This lack of direct information does not speak of something that "caused quite a stir." There is no record of there being any such a stir. This lack of information at the time speaks more clearly of an event which never actually occurred, but instead of rumors and tall tales which were in circulation years later.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And yet oddly enough these two passages in Matthew represent the only indication that this monumental event ever occurred. It's almost as if the author of Matthew was the only one who knew about it.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: All four Gospels knew about Jesus' Resurrection. Lets talk about that one.


Why only consider the gospels that serve to verify your lifetime of religious indoctrination? Why not consider ALL of the gospels from that era?

1. Gospel of the Ebionites
2. Gospel of the Egyptians
3. Gospel of Marcion
4. Gospel of Peter
5. Gospel of the Twelve Apostles
6. Gospels of Barnabas and Bartholomew
7. Gospels of the Nativity
8. Protevangelium of James
9. Pseudo-Matthew
10. Gospel of Joseph the Carpenter
11. Gospels of the Infancy or Childhood
12. Gospel of Thomas
13. Arabic Gospel of the Childhood
14. Gospels of the Passion and Resurrection
15.Gospel of Peter (as above)
16. Gospel of Nicodemus

And before you begin to protest that these other Gospels are not "authentic," let me point out that they were "authentic" to the people who wrote them and those individuals that accepted and believed in them. Because what they really serve as evidence of, is the fact that Jesus has always been a composite of beliefs from the earliest times. Exactly as one would expect of figure that was composed of tall tales and rumors.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: We get the authorship of the Gospels from the Early Church fathers, beginning in the first century CE. When we piece together all of their accounts, we find that the authorship of the Gospels were all attributed to the Apostles (Matthew, John) or friends of the Apostles (Mark, Luke).


First, Acts indicates that there was an early Christian church at Jerusalem. That did not survive the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple by the Romans in 70 AD, and the
dispersal of the Jewish people. By the end of the first century, and throughout the second and third century, christians came under heavy persecution by the Romans. This is the time when Christians were famously being "thrown to the lions" at the coliseum. People worshipped in secret. There was no established "church" during this period, for the very good reason that none was possible. There was no physical edifice of a church. No buildings. No established doctrine concerning just who Jesus was, or what his moisson was. No established dogma concerning which of the various writings were valid and which were not. Although each congregation has its own hierarchy, there was no overall hierarchy that was in a position to mandate "true" documents from "false" documents. None of this was possible until the emperor Constantine came into power at the beginning of the fourth century, and made the practice of Christianity legal throughout the empire. And the result was that Christians fell into vicious and deadly infighting over disputed points of doctrine and written dogma. Constantine, who had seen Christianity as a potential unifying force, was appalled at the violence, and tasked the Christian leaders of the various of the largest congregations with the task of hammering out a uniform doctrine and a uniform set of established agreed upon books of the dogma of Christianity. This was the beginning of the Catholic (universal) church. And so they began to hammer out a composite view of just who Jesus was. This represent, more or less, the composite view of Jesus that has come down to modern times. All accomplished by individuals who were further in time from Jesus than you are from Napoleon.

Now, let me point out yet again that Paul had no direct knowledge of Jesus. Jesus was executed before Paul became aware of him.

Little is known about ANY of the purported authors of the Gospels. Of the four, information on the author of Gospel Mark, although spare enough, is the most elaborate. Christian historian Papais, writing in the first half of the second century, tells us:

"This also the presbyter said: Mark, having become the interpreter of Peter, wrote down accurately, though not indeed in order, whatsoever he remembered of the things done or said by Christ. For he neither heard the Lord nor followed him, but afterward, as I said, he followed Peter, who adapted his teaching to the needs of his hearers, but with no intention of giving a connected account of the Lord's discourses, so that Mark committed no error while he thus wrote some things as he remembered them." http://catholic-resources.org/Bible/Eus ... ospels.htm

Mark was a follower of Peter, but did not personally know Jesus. Mark was not a direct witness. And yet mark is critical. Because Gospel Mark is the temple upon which the other two synoptic gospels are founded.

Wikipedia
Synoptic Gospels
The gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke are referred to as the Synoptic Gospels because they include many of the same stories, often in a similar sequence and in similar or sometimes identical wording. They stand in contrast to John, whose content is comparatively distinct. The term synoptic (Latin: synopticus; Greek: συνοπτικός, translit. synoptikós) comes via Latin from the Greek σ�νοψις, synopsis, i.e. "(a) seeing all together, synopsis";[n 1] the sense of the word in English, the one specifically applied to these three gospels, of "giving an account of the events from the same point of view or under the same general aspect" is a modern one.
Image
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synoptic_Gospels

In one of the very few points of agreement by theologians and secular experts alike, it is almost universally acknowledged that the Gospel According to Luke, and Acts of the
Apostles, were written by the same individual. This individual, known as Luke according to tradition, can be clearly identified though his own writings in Acts as a follower and
admirer of Paul. And again, Paul did not know Jesus, so there is no reason to suppose that his follower Luke had any direct knowledge of Jesus either.

Luke was a follower of Paul, and neither had direct personal knowledge of Jesus.

And now we come to the two most controversial Gospels, Matthew and John.

The Gospel according to John mentions of the apostle John, but only in the third person. Nowhere does the Gospel indicate that the apostle John is the author. Papais, again writing in the second century, indicates that there were two different individuals named John. One was John the apostle, known as the Evangelist. The second was an individual Papais knew personally, and referred to as John the presbyter.

Writings of Papias:
"I received with care at any time from the elders, and stored up with care in my memory, assuring you at the same time of their truth. For I did not, like the multitude, take pleasure in those who spoke much, but in those who taught the truth; nor in those who related strange commandments, but in those who rehearsed the commandments given by the Lord to faith, and proceeding from truth itself. If, then, anyone who had attended on the elders came, I asked minutely after their sayings,--what Andrew or Peter said, or what was said by Philip, or by Thomas, or by James, or by John, or by Matthew, or by any other of the Lord's disciples: which things Aristion and the presbyter John, the disciples of the Lord, say. For I imagined that what was to be got from books was not so profitable to me as what came from the living and abiding voice."
http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/papias.html

This second John, John the Presbyter, can be identified as the author of the Gospel According to John. But John the Presbyter someone personally known to Papias in the second century, was not a direct witness to the events attributed to Jesus.

And now we come to the most interesting of Gospel mysteries. Who wrote Gospel Matthew? Gospel Matthew has been given the place of first among the Gospels, indeed the first book of the NT. Because Papais, his good friend and fellow Christian historian Polycarp, and Eusebius writing in the 4th century, indicated that the apostle Matthew had undertaken to write

a gospel during the period when Peter and Paul were traditionally believed to have been attempting to establish a church in Rome. This time period, again traditionally, is believed to have been the years between 60 and the great fire in 64.

But, as invariably happens with Christian doctrine, a more detailed examination of the facts reveals problems. Because Papais also wrote:

"For Matthew composed the logia [sayings] in Hebrew style; but each recorded them as he was able."`

And in fact both Polycarp and Eusebius also confirmed in their writings that the apostle Matthew wrote his gospel "in the language of the Jews." In other words in the Hebrew language, Aramaic. And that's a serious problem for determining the authorship of the canonical Gospel of Matthew, which was written in pure KOINE GREEK. All FOUR canonical Gospels are in fact written in pure Koine Greek, the common language of that time, and show no signs of translation. Pure unaltered Greek in pure Greek verse and idiom, with no indication of adjustments or translations from the vastly more difficult and complicated Aramaic language. As already noted, Gospel Matthew largely IS the Gospel According to luke. With some information apparently only known to the author of Gospel Matthew included.

There WAS however a book written in Aramaic which was known to have existed from the early times of Christianity known as The Gospel of the Hebrews. But this book disappeared from history about the 4th century. In other words, the beginning of the authority of the Catholic church. Only some few fragments of the Gospel of the Hebrews exist today. Enough however, to confirm its existence.

So who wrote the Gospel According to Matthew contained in your Bible? The one written in pure koine Greek? NO ONE KNOWS! What is clear today is that it was written AFTER Gospel Mark instead of before Gospel Mark as the Catholic church once contended. Gospel Matthew essentially IS Gospel Mark, with some material original to Matthew woven in. Gospel Luke contains elements of both Gospels Mark and Matthew, and was clearly written third. Which is why Gospels Matthew, Mark and Luke are known as the synoptic Gospels. Bottom line, all of the Gospels were written anonymously decades after the fact, and NONE of them can be shown to have been first hand accounts for what they are describing. They represent the condition of some of the stories and tall tales being spread about during the last quarter of the first century.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
The Gospel According to Matthew
"The ancient tradition that the author was the disciple and apostle of Jesus named Matthew (see Mt 10:3) is untenable because the gospel is based, in large part, on the Gospel according to Mark (almost all the verses of that gospel have been utilized in this), and it is hardly likely that a companion of Jesus would have followed so extensively an account that came from one who admittedly never had such an association rather than rely on his own memories."
http://www.usccb.org/bible/matthew/0

Gospel Matthew is almost entirely taken from the Gospel Mark. Which, according to Christian tradition was written AFTER Gospel Matthew. Problems indeed!

Wikipedia
Synoptic Gospels
The gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke are referred to as the Synoptic Gospels because they include many of the same stories, often in a similar sequence and in similar wording.

They stand in contrast to John, whose content is comparatively distinct.

This strong parallelism among the three gospels in content, arrangement, and specific language is widely attributed to literary interdependence.The question of the precise nature of their literary relationship—the "synoptic problem"—has been a topic of lively debate for centuries and has been described as "the most fascinating literary enigma of all time". The longstanding majority view favors Marcan priority, in which both Matthew and Luke have made direct use of the Gospel of Mark as a source, and further holds that Matthew and Luke also drew from an additional hypothetical document, called Q.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synoptic_Gospels

There is a problem with the " hypothetical document, called Q" as well. This hypothesis was first advanced by Christian theologians at the beginning of the 19th century to explain why the apostle Matthew would draw on a non eyewitness source, Gospel Mark, when writing his own Gospel. The answer, they decided, was that both the authors of Gospel Matthew and Gospel Mark were drawing on a third source, which they termed "the Quelle" (the source). Q for short. The problem with this idea? They made it up entirely. No such third source was ever mentioned or known to exist, and no such source has ever been found. This is in fact an example of Christian mythology at work. Christian mythology is the tendency of

Christians to make up claims information, declare that it must be true, and then declare the matter settled.

So WHO DID write the canonical Gospel According to Matthew that is included all all modern NT's? No one really knows! All four Gospels were written anonymously decades after the time that Jesus lived and died. Almost nothing is known about any of the authors.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So obviously, two of the alleged authors weren't even apostles, so for the Church Fathers to attribute sacred/holy religious texts to them seems genuinely honest.


I tend to support the notion that all four Gospels were written by true believers.

The "church fathers" represent individuals who presented the composite version of Jesus that the Catholic church would begin to fashion together in the fourth century. Which would mean discarding dozens of accounts about Jesus that the church chose to disregard. Those who maintained position on Jesus that the Catholic church decided were valid tended to be referred to as "Bishops." Although the Catholic church was two centuries from being born in the second century, both Papias and his good friend Polycarp came to be referred to as "Bishop" Papias, and 'Bishop" Polycarp. Those who held doctrines that differed from what would become established Catholic doctrine had their writings destroyed and some individuals were excommunicated in absentia.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Second, unless one is regarding the Gospels as complete fiction, if you honestly read the books you can clearly see that the details of the context is coming from eyewitness
accounts..by people who were there.


You have already agreed that the author of Gospel Mark and the author of Gospel Luke "were not there."

The gospel accounts almost certainly written by true believers and were based on the stories and tales which began being spread about by the apostles and some early disciples beginning a few weeks after the crucifixion. The people who "claimed" to have witnessed the risen Jesus. The story need not be seen as complete fiction. The parts which are obviously complete fiction can reasonably be regarded as complete fiction, however.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Third, my claim isn't necessarily that the Gospels were directly hand-written by the alleged authors, but at the very least it is from the TESTIMONY of the alleged authors...as that is where the story originated from.


The early followers of Jesus claimed to have witnessed the risen Jesus. I am not denying this. I am saying the claiming that a corpse came back to life and flew away is an incredibly unrealistic claim. Which leaves us every valid reason to suppose that it is not a true claim. And when we take an indepth look at the various portions of the story that are meant to support this unrealistic claim, we can see that the story remains unrealistic and implausible.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
You WOULD say that of course. But then there are those darned facts to be reckoned with. According to the time frame established by the Gospels, which is all we have to work with concerning Jesus, since no one even bothered to record his existence during his lifetime, Jesus was executed circa 27-30 AD. Jesus was born, according to Gospel Matthew, at the end of the reign of Herod the Great. Herod died at a known time, 4 BC. Which puts Jesus' birth circa 6 or 5 BC. Jesus began his ministry at about age 30 (Luke 3:23). Three passovers are mentioned as having occurred during the time of Jesus' ministry. Which brings Jesus to the generally accepted age of about 33 when he was executed. Now do the math and you come up with a date of circa 27-30 AD for the time of the crucifixion. Gospel Mark mentions the stone by stone destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, which also occurred at a known date, 70 BC.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I actually agree with everything you said here...and because you acknowledge the Gospels (all except John) mention of the Temple's destruction, and its actual destruction date (70 CE); you actually help make my point for me.

Jesus predicted the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem in the Synoptic Gospels..so obviously, if the Gospels were written after 70 CE, you would think that books would mention a fulfilled prophecy of this magnitude..but they didn't; because it didn't happen yet.


You might think that all four Gospels would have mention something of the magnitude of the so called "murder of the innocents, by Herod." But you would be wrong. In fact, much like Matthew's "Night of the Living Dead" story, there is no other information of this event at all. None of the other Gospels mention it. Jewish historians go so far as to deny that any such event ever occured, because there is no historical mention of it by the Jews. And it is suspiciously close to the Moses birth story. No indication from any other source that hordes of corpses came up out of their graves and roamed the street of Jerusalem either. And NOT ONE of the other Gospels mentioned something as crucial as a guard being placed at the tomb. Because if there was no guard at the tomb to deflect the obvious conclusion that the body had simply been moved, the whole story falls apart immediately. And yet none of the other Gospels make any mention of it at all. Even Gospel Luke, who used portions of Gospel Matthew in his own Gospel, fails to mention anything about a guard being placed at the tomb. It's almost as if he knew that the claim was false.

The fact that Jesus prophesied the destruction of the temple at Jerusalem in 70 AD, in a book widely regarded as having been written AFTER 70 AD, tells us all we need to know about the way ancient prophecy works. Christians often praise the OT for the accuracy of its prophecies. And yet even Jewish scholars acknowledge that the OT underwent much revision over the course of the centuries. It's a good deal easier to get the prophecies right if one is able to write of rewrite them as needed.

When there is an unanswerable question Christians inevitably find recourse in magic. The corpse of Jesus returned to life and flew away because God can do anything. God is magic. Jesus knew years in advance that the temple would be pulled down stone by stone, because Jesus is God and God knows everything. Jesus is magic. Although you might not recognize it, there is a HUGE difference between actual fact and mere assumption. Relying on declarations of magic is a case study of unverified and unverifiable assumption.

MONTAQ
FACTS vs. ASSUMPTIONS - WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?
The difference between a fact and an assumption may not be obvious. A fact is something that has occurred or is actually the case. The usual test for a statement of fact is verifiability; that is, whether it can be proven.

An assumption, on the other hand, is a belief without proof. We, as a society, have grown accustomed to assumptions being presented to us as facts. Advertisers routinely present assumptions as facts as a means of influencing our purchasing decisions; political candidates present assumptions as facts in order to garner public support; friends and colleagues often present assumptions as facts in order to obtain our approval or agreement.
http://www.mondaq.com/canada/x/216840/F ... Difference

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So therefore, I rationally argue that none of the Gospels can be said to have been written after 70 CE...so then you just work back from there. Paul allegedly died in 67 CE..but he was still alive at the ending of Acts, which means that Acts could not have been written after 67 CE.


As you say, Paul was "allegedly" executed in Rome during the 60's. The honest truth is, however, that these is no record of WHEN Paul died, where, or the manner of his death. When last we hear from Paul in Acts he was being held under house arrest in Rome on the relatively minor charge of disturbing the peace. There is also a tradition that Paul was judged not guilty and that he went to Spain to spread the Gospel. There is no way to authenticate this tradition however.
Image

So what ACTUALLY HAPPENED TO PAUL? No one knows, because his activities went unrecorded. According to Christian tradition Paul was beheaded in Rome because, as a Roman citizen, he was not subject to crucifixion. But there is no way to authenticate this tradition either. No one really knows what happened to Paul. Which Christians have never felt to be a problem, claiming as they do, the right to make up details and declare them to be true as necessary. (Christian mythology) So PAul was beheaded in Rome, and Peter was crucified upside down at his own request as being unworthy of being crucified in the same manner as Jesus. Because the Romans, those well known tender hearted softies, would naturally honor the last request of a man they we brutally putting to death.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: I say between 25-30, according to the case that one can make. But then again, hypothetically speaking, even IF Mark was written 40 years after Jesus' execution; so what? So what?

That is still within the lifetime of the Apostles. There are people who were alive during JFK' assassination, who are STILL living today and can testify to you the events of that
day.


What case can one make that is not the result of Christian mythology in action?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Same thing with MLK. Reverend Jesse Jackson, who was part of MLK's inner circle, is still living today and was an eyewitness account to MLK's assassination...and Rev. Jackson is alive today, 50 years after MLK's death, and can give his testimony..and even write a book about it if it wanted to.

So, if Rev. Jackson can do it, why can't Matthew? So, your continual pointing out "40 years after" is irrelevant, as long as it can be said to be within the lifetime of the apostle who wrote it.

Second, we are talking about when the books were WRITTEN, not when the stories ORIGINATED. I may write about a significance event in my life 30 years after it happened...but when I write it has no bearing on when the event occurred.


THe Rev. Jesse Jackson indisputably knew MLK. I have seen pictures of them together. Paul never met Jesus. Neither did The authors of Gospels Mark and Luke. Gospels Matthew and John were written anonymously, and there is absolutely nothing to connect their authors to the apostles other than Christian tradition. (Christian mythology). It's so because Christians declare it to be so. Which is an ever repeating theme in Christian mythology.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Paul began writing his letters to the various churches circa the fifties. So the very earliest mention of the fact that Jesus even existed does not occur until about 20 years or so after Jesus was supposed to have been executed.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Again, you are mentioning when the books were written, which is contrast to when the stories originated. Sure, Paul may have written about Christ 20 years after the fact, but the Pre-Pauline creed that he claimed to have been "passed down" to him (1Corin 15:3-7) was all an early (3-5 years) statement of faith.


Paul wrote his letters to the churches cira the 50's. Jesus was executed circa 27-30 AD. Paul's beliefs were based largely on the rumors put into circulation some few weeks after the execution of Jesus. And, it seems, by Paul's firm belief that he had personally spoken to the years dead Jesus.

And that fifties timeframe you gave (particularly 1Corinthians) predate the Gospels. So here we have Paul talking about Jesus, his burial, his Resurrection, his post-mortem
appearances, and the 12 disciples....before the biographies of Jesus (Gospels) even existed.

1Cor. was written circa 55. Just about the time Mark was writing his gospel, according to you.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: But he was a Jesus contemporary, though...and claimed that Jesus appeared to him as well.


I am a contemporary of JFK. My direct knowledge of the assassination weekend comes from watching much of it unfold on live TV. How many assassins were there? I still don't know for certain. I didn't happen to have any visions or delusions that weekend. But then, I was not severely dehydrated.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Nor is there any direct eyewitness link between any of the Gospels and the time of Jesus, other than Christian tradition.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Why would Christian tradition say that Mark and Luke wrote Gospels, if they were merely just ascribing names to their holy books? Why not say Peter wrote it? Why not James? Surely Peter and James holds more weight than Mark and Luke, of whom neither were apostles of Christ.


Papias also indicated that the individual who wrote Gospel Mark was named Mark and served as an interpreter for Peter. In historical terms, that's as good as gold. THe author of Gospel Luke is consistently identified by Christians as the "beloved physician" Luke mentioned in Col.4. The best that can be said about this particular identification is that it COULD be true. But there is nothing to connect the Luke mentioned in Col.4 to the author of Gospel Luke and Acts but the name Luke. A common name then as it is today. As we can see from the profession of women named Mary, it is often impossible to differentiate between individuals unless some identifying information is provided.

The two Gospels of most interest of course are Gospels Matthew and John. Both are represented unconditionally by Christian tradition to have been the apostles Matthew and Luke. It would be CONVENIENT, admittedly. But Christian mythology invariably seems to come complete with a monkey wrench in the works that Christians studiously attempt to ignore. The author of Gospel John is best identified as Papias' friend, John the Presbyter. And the author of Gospel Matthew is a complete mystery, although the reason for the traditional attribution of the Gospel with the apostle is at least founded on a recognized misunderstanding.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: And my response to this was; The Son of the Living God needed to be buried, and a tomb was nearby (John 19:42), so, to hell with Jewish tradition.


Transporting a Jewish body back home to be buried with family when possible was and remains a very common custom among the Jews. For Joseph to have sent the body home to Jesus' family would have been considered a sign of high respect among the Jews. Burying Jesus in a tomb meant for Joseph and his family would have been flatly, unseemly. But, I admit that the possibility of sending the body back to Galilee is merely conjecture. Conjecture based on good evidence. But the body was in the possession of Joseph, and perhaps he had another destination in mind. What can be said for certain is that the body of Jesus was not in Joseph's tomb on Sunday morning. So obviously it was somewhere else. The claim that the body returned to life and left the tomb of its own accord is the antithesis of that which is obvious.

End of part one
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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Tired of the Nonsense
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Re: Debating the Truth of the Resurrection.

Post #10

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 8 by For_The_Kingdom]

PArt two to For_The_Kingdom


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
What the Gospels do NOT say was that Joseph considered Jesus to be God Himself.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: ?


Point to the passage in scripture which indicates that Joseph believed that Jesus was God Himself.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Actually, he did. John 8:48-59..the famous "I AM" verse. The Pharisees obviously knew what he was proclaiming, and you can tell based on their reaction.

Second, Jesus received worship by his followers (Matt 28:9). Yet, we all know that only God is worthy of worship.

Jesus is called God by Thomas (John 20:28). Yet, calling another man "God" is obviously blasphemous in the Jewish community.

Stephen prayed to Jesus (Acts 7:59). We should only pray to God, as only he can hear prayers.

Now, the reason Jesus didn't go around saying "I am God, worship me!!" was obviously because he humbled himself (Phil 2:59), taking the form of a man/servant and being in subordination to the Father.

If you are truly a humble person, you don't need to go around bragging. You know who you are and what you can do.
You will also notice that after making the "I am" comment in verse 58, Jesus immediately got out of Dodge. Because claiming to be God was open blasphemy. You will also notice that Jesus never openly claims to be either God or king of the Jews when pressed by Pilate. It was his refusal to deny these things which got him crucified.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: It would have been open blasphemy if it wasn't TRUE. It was true, therefore, it wasn't blasphemy.
This semantics game is of little consequence to someone who is in the process of being stoned to death for blasphemy. Like Stephan. Notice that Paul helped get Stephen stoned to death for blasphemy, but never made any attempt to arrest any of the apostles. Because the exact nature of what was being claimed meant the difference between perhaps a potential flogging, or being put to death in nasty ways.

What Joseph did was to save the body of Jesus from ignominiously being cast into a common grave. His action in no way implied that He thought Jesus was God Himself. That's a rather large jump, and a big assumption on your part.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Having the body of Jesus returned to his family for burial would have been the ultimate act of respect however. And within the means of Joseph the rich man. It cannot be stated as an undeniable fact that Joseph had the body of Jesus returned to his family however.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Too speculative and out of touch with Scripture.
The claim that the body of Jesus returned to live is out of touch with all experience and observation. In other words, it's out of touch with reality.

The Gospels do not say that the body of Jesus was taken back to Galilee for burial, this is true. But then, if that is what occurred, it wouldn't really have been included in the message the apostles were attempting to spread, would it? The authors of the Gospels, much like the rest of Christianity ever since, supposed that the body had been taken to the tomb for permanent interment. But as I have already pointed out, these sorts of tombs were common among the rich, and were not intended for single occupancy. They were intended for entire generations of family members. But Jesus was not part of Joseph's family. He had his own family back in Galilee.

The body DID prove to be missing from Joseph's tomb however, according to the Gospels. The tomb was conveniently close to where the crucifixion took place (nigh at hand) which made it the perfect spot to wash and prepare the body. And the body was oddly over prepared with 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe gum paste, something which would have been totally pointless, not to mention excessively expensive, if the body was intended to be left to the process of natural decay. But this detail makes perfect sense if the body was intended to be taken on a journey of a few days. And finally, all of the apostles journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion. What ACTUALLY became of the missing body? The clues seem to speak for themselves. Reaching the conclusion that Joseph's tomb was empty because the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord is beyond speculative, and all the way to unrealistically silly.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
What can be stated for a fact is that Joseph never intended his personal tomb to be the final resting place for the body of Jesus. Why? Because Joseph's tomb proved to be empty on Sunday morning.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Resurrection.
Childish make believe.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Having the body transported back to Galilee is simply the the most likely destination for the body. When we read that all of the apostles of Jesus journeyed to Galilee after the crucifixion would seem to support this conclusion.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Again, Jesus told them to go to Galilee, so that is why the Apostles "journeyed to Galilee".
This represents the "risen" Jesus rumor that the apostles began perpetuating six weeks after the crucifixion. How do we know that it isn't true? Because it is supposed to have occurred AFTER Jesus was already dead.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The conclusion that Joseph's tomb proved to be empty because the corpse came back to life and subsequently flew off up into the sky requires a childlike level of gullibility.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: It is what they believed. Just like the conclusion that inanimate matter came to life and subsequently began to talk requires a childlike level of gullibility...but it is what naturalists believe.
It is what Christians have believed ever since. It is and always was, an unrealistic belief. We seemed to have finally reached the point where people are becoming too sophisticated to buy into these sorts of ancient childlike myths any longer. Which explains why Christianity is rapidly losing favor in the more well educated countries.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
When I say that the story of the tomb is plausible, I mean that I cannot dismiss it based on superstitious implausibility. I don't know how much of this story, if any, is true.

Certain parts are clearly unreasonable and unrealistic however, and we have every right to dismiss them.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: And if we (believers) find all of the parts reasonable and realistic, then we have every right to accept it.
Certainly you have every right to accept it. You have every right to believe in the story of Santa Claus if that is what you choose to believe. But you shouldn't be shocked as you discover that the rest of society is rapidly concluding that your beliefs are to simplistic and unrealistic to support.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
As for the location of the tomb, there are two primary contenders, the tomb at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and the Garden tomb located outside of the old city.

Which one represents the real tomb depends on one's personal level of gullibility.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Location of tomb: somewhere in Jerusalem. Good enough for me.
Wikipedia
The Lost Tomb of Jesus
The Lost Tomb of Jesus is a documentary co-produced and first broadcast on the Discovery Channel and Vision TV in Canada on March 4, 2007, covering the discovery of the Talpiot Tomb. It was directed by Canadian documentary and film maker Simcha Jacobovici and produced by Felix Golubev and Ric Esther Bienstock, while James Cameron served as executive producer. (Jacobovici and Cameron had previously created The Exodus Decoded.) The film was released in conjunction with a book about the same subject, The Jesus Family Tomb, issued in late February 2007 and co-authored by Jacobovici and Charles R. Pellegrino. The documentary and book's claims are the subject of controversy within the archaeological and theological fields, as well as among linguistic and biblical scholars.

Image
Ossuary of Jesus son of Joseph. The Israel Museum, Jerusalem
Image
The inscription "ישו בר יוסף" "Jesus son of Joseph" on the Ossuary. The Israel Museum, Jerusalem
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lost_Tomb_of_Jesus

Talpiot is a neighborhood in southern Jerusalem. So perhaps you are right and the body of Jesus never actually left Jerusalem at all.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Based on Acts, the rumor began to be spread starting about six weeks after the execution of Jesus. That story was NOT recorded at the time. What we are dealing with is the nature of the story as it was being presented during the second half of the first century.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Right, and the "second half of the first century" was still during the lifetime of the Apostles. Unless you are stating that they were supposed to have pen & pad with them at all times ready to take out and record any time something significant occurred.
If one is not going to take out "pen and pad" when the streets are full of resurrected dead people, or when a corpse comes back to life and flies away, exactly what would prompt anyone to bother to write at all, one wonders? I notice that Paul wrote rather extensively. And you should attempt to keep in mind that long list of various Gospels, Acts and epistles that I provided which DID NOT make it into the 27 book canon of the new testament. People wrote things down when the situation moved them to express themselves. And yet no one even bothered to mention that Jesus even existed when he was alive. Years later however, stories then in circulation about the wonderful things Jesus accomplished seemed to inspire loads of people who never met him to write about him. Just as you are inspired.

These were people who had no direct personal knowledge of the actual events, however. Just as you are moved to write about Jesus, and to preach about Jesus, despite the fact that you have no direct knowledge of Jesus, or what actually occurred. Significantly, those individuals who DID have direct personal knowledge of Jesus, and what actually occurred at the time, were not moved to write about it at the time.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
How close the original rumor as presented by the disciples six weeks after the death of Jesus and the story that was in general circulation 40-70 years later we can never know.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Which is why we can appeal to Paul, who WAS a contemporary to Jesus and the original apostles, even having met with Peter and James. He would have known what the "original" story was because he was a living testament to the times and people of the times...which is not to mention the pre-Pauline creed which, again, is an early testament of faith directly from the original apostles.

So we are not talking about a belief system that originated some 40-70 years after the fact here.
Paul is a second generation believer. Like virtually all believers who were recruited into the belief by others, he had no direct knowledge of Jesus. Like every Christian from that time down to you, Paul came to genuinely believe the stories that were being told. If it should seem unrealistic to you that all of these subsequent billions of individuals would buy into a belief that was totally bogus, I once again give you the examples of Islam and Mormonism. You are far better qualified to explain why people choose to subscribe to beliefs that, to those outside the belief system at least, appear to be based on total nonsense than I am. You are one of the gullible billions, and your gullibility seems to make sense to you. Just as it seems to make sense to the rest of the gullible billions around the world.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Did it? Do you consider the current state of Christianity "all worked itself out in the long run?" Or are we really witnessing the result of 2,000 years of confusion, dispute and discord in action?
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Christianity is the worlds largest religion in terms of followers. So yeah, it worked out according to popularity/followers.
HOW MANY CHRISTIAN DENOMINATIONS WORLDWIDE?
World Christian Encyclopedia (David A. Barrett; Oxford University Press, 1982) apparently estimated almost 21,000 denominations, and the updated World Christian Encyclopedia (Barrett, Kurian, Johnson; Oxford Univ Press, 2nd edition, 2001) estimated at least 33,000. “Denomination� is defined as “an organised christian group within a country�.

The Center for the Study of Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary estimated 34,000 denominations in 2000, rising to an estimated 43,000 in 2012. These numbers have exploded from 1,600 in the year 1900.
https://theway21stcentury.wordpress.com ... worldwide/


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Does a "state of grief" really explain going out to visit a body they knew they had no chance of gaining access to , on a mission they knew to be unnecessarily frivolous, based on the forlorn hope that they might encounter total strangers who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night who would agree to help them? Because it also sounds like someone's contrived load of the stuff that the little bird left on the rock. Now, combine this contrived story with the declaration that the corpse of Jesus came back to life and flew away, and we begin to see a distinct pattern of childlike self delusion developing.
For_The_Kingdom wrote: Ok, lets see how the women's mentality lines up with typical, everyday stuff. Ok, so where I work, the building is enclosed with an electric gate blocking the entrance. Unless you have your badge, you can't get inside the gate.

So, if I mistakenly leave my badge in the building and go home, but forget that I left something in the building that I REALLY need, there is no way to get inside the gate, is
there? (there isn't).

So, depending on what I left in the building and how bad I need it, I may be tempted to go to the gate.. hoping, just hoping, that someone just HAPPENS to be inside the gate to let me in.

Now, what are the chances of this happening? Slim? Maybe. Impossible? No. In my desperation, I may be tempted to take the chance of going to the gate, just to see if I can hit the jackpot.
If there is a possibility that someone might "card you in" at your place of employment, your security is pretty weak. In certain jobs, such a breach of security would not only be grounds for removal, but possible jail time. But of course your example does not directly compare to a tomb closed of by a multi-ton rock. Or the apparently vain hope that some strangers who just happened to be hanging out in a graveyard at night might be pressed into service. Nor does it explain the desperate need of the women to put more ointment on a body already covered in 100 pounds of ointment. To say that this is a suspicious and unbelievable story is an understatement.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Matthew 27:
[57] When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple:
[58] He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

Mark 15:
[43] Joseph of Arimathaea, and honourable counseller, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus.
[44] And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead.
[45] And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.

Luke 23:
[50] And, behold, there was a man named Joseph, a counseller; and he was a good man, and a just:
[51] (The same had not consented to the counsel and deed of them;) he was of Arimathaea, a city of the Jews: who also himself waited for the kingdom of God.
[52] This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.

John 19:
[38] And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Actually it's pretty much unanimous in the Gospels. The disciples of Jesus took possession of the body of Jesus. No one but the disciples of Jesus ever had clear possession of the body of Jesus.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: You said "disciples" of Jesus, which suggests plurality...which would lead anyone who read it to conclude you are talking about the main 12 disciples of Jesus. But instead, you are talking about one particular disciple of Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea, of whom was not included in the 12.

Dont make it seem as if the "disciples" (the 12) took the body from Pilate's custody, when only one disciple (not one of the 12) actually took the body.


You should already be aware that there were two types of "disciples" of Jesus. There were those who considered themselves followers of Jesus, and then there were the eleven remaining companions of Jesus, his apostles. The apostles were a subset of the wider group of followers. When the NT specifically refers to apostles, it is speaking of the group of companions. When it refers to apostles, it is speaking of the wider group of followers of Jesus, which may or may not include some or all of the apostles.

The body of Jesus was given over to his followers. No one but his followers ever had clear possession of the body again. THe Jewish priests had clear possession of a tomb. A tomb that proved to be empty.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Coating the body in 100 pounds of expensive myrrh and aloe paste makes no sense if the body were simply intended to be left in Joseph's tomb. Coating the body in this manner would have served to semi-arrest some of the effects of putrefaction for a few days, and would have masked the odor of decay for a time. But that would have been entirely pointless if the body were simply intended to be left to the natural decaying process anyway. It makes perfect sense however if the intention was to send the body on a journey of a few days.


For_The_Kingdom wrote: Even if that was the case, we can charge that to a simple ignorance on the part of everyone (all of the believers) who simply weren't expecting a Resurrection after the death of Jesus.

If you (Joseph) know the body will be Resurrected, then you wouldn't have gone through the trouble of delaying the decaying process, ESPECIALLY if you are aware of the prophecy of the body "not seeing decay"..

Psalm 16:9-10 "9Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely. 10For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.

Which is the same Scripture Peter mentioned as fulfilled in Acts 2:26-27..

26Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices, my body also will live in hope, 27because You will not abandon my soul to Hades, nor will You let Your Holy One see decay. Obviously, with hindsight being 20/20, the Psalms scripture made sense to Peter at that moment, but obviously not during the time of the crucifixion.


Now you are assuming that Joseph left the body in his tomb with the expectation that it would be resurrected. And yet the NT makes it clear that even the apostles were not expecting that to occur. You are clearly grasping at straws.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
And this is what I mean when I say that the Gospel authors were not themselves eyewitness to the actual events they are detailing. Why for example would the author of Gospel John include details of the body of Jesus being coated in 100 pounds of myrrh and aloe?


For_The_Kingdom wrote: Um, because that is what happened.


Exactly my point. The author of Gospel John was a true believer, and did not doubt that Jesus had been resurrected. He was telling the story that he was convinced was true. So he freely included details that he had been told were true, despite the fact that such details might later be used to discredit the claim of resurrection. A possibility that undoubtedly never occurred to him.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Consider the following scenario. You are a police detective tasked with investigating an empty grave and a missing corpse. [A.] Is your first impression going to be that some living agent was involved? Or [B.], is your first impression going to be that the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord?

Please answer [A.] or [B.]. If you dare. But you will undoubtedly NOT dare. Because the answer is obvious.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: LOL. Funny you give such a scenario. For the record, no, my first impression would not be that the corpse came back to life and left of its own accord.

But then again, that wasn't the first impression of the women, NOR the disciples, either.

John 20:1-2 "Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!�

So, when Mary discovered the tomb to be empty, was her "first impression": Resurrection!!!

No, it wasn't. She offered a simpler explanation, namely: someone took the body out of the tomb!!

And what about Peter, when Mary told him (and the other disciple) that the tomb was empty, was Peter's first impression: Resurrection!!!

No, it wasn't. Scripture clearly stated that "They still did not know from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead".

So, in a nut shell: You, myself, Mary, Peter, and John...we all agree, that if we go to an empty grave, our first impression wouldn't be: Resurrection.

Glad we can all agree on something, here. LOL.


As you admit, the first and most obvious conclusion to the mystery of a missing corpse is that it must have been the result of actions taking by the living. The conclusion that the body is missing because it came back to life and left of its own accord is really not a realistic conclusion at all. If there exists the possibility that living agents moved the body, than the unrealistic conclusion that the corpse left of its own accord is reduced to foolishness.

So, were there any living agents with the means motive and opportunity to have moved the body opf Jesus?

A. MEANS. Joseph, the rich man, was clearly a man of means. Only a man of means could have hoped to have been granted an audience with, and be granted a favor from, the Roman

governor. Clearly a handsome gift for the granting of such a favor is implied. Along with Joseph we have another disciple named Nicodemus that was involved.

THAT THE DISCIPLES HAD THE MEANS IS EXPRESSLY INDICATED IN THE GOSPELS.

B. Motive.
Deut.21
[22] And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree:
[23] His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.


Crucifixion was the most lowly and ignominious death possible for a Jew. Jesus was beaten and hung up for death. A scandalous death for him, his family, and for his cause. This was precisely the intention the priests had in pressing the Roman governor for his crucifixion. It should have served to abruptly put an end to Jesus' movement. Jesus needed to be redeemed as an instrument of God in the eyes of the public despite the miserable and degraded circumstances of his death. The Jewish priests of course had intended to prove just the opposite to the public. The claim that Jesus had been resurrected from the dead would unequivocally serve to established that Jesus truly was an instrument of God, and the message was that Jesus' miserable and degraded death was in fact a purposely designed act of redemption by God. The kingdom of God is now at hand and everyone needs to get on board IMMEDIATELY! That was the story the followers were spreading. Whether the story was true or not is the subject at hand, but there is no question that the circumstances of Jesus' death were ultimately completely reversed from what the priests had intended. The followers of Jesus were able to turn the degrading circumstances of Jesus' death into a glorious victory for his movement. Some six weeks after the execution of Jesus his followers returned to Jerusalem and began spreading the rumor of his resurrection. Who witnessed the risen Jesus? His followers, according to his followers. And where was the resurrected Jesus now? He flew off up into the sky, ACCORDING TO HIS FOLLOWERS! Whether his followers, in the beginning, intended or expected to make a profession out of this claim is an open question. What is clear from history is that this reversal of fortunes proved to be one of the most complete reversals of fortune in history. Matthew 27:64 indicates the the Jewish authorities fully believed at the timethat the disciples of Jesus had a motive for doing this.

The priests suspected a hoax strongly enough in fact to go a graveyard on a high holy day to secure the tomb. And what they feared the disciples intended to do is exactly what occurred.

THE DISCIPLES HAD THE MOTIVE. THE JEWISH PRIESTS BELIEVED AT THE TIME THAT THE DISCIPLES HAD THE MOTIVE.

C. OPPORTUNITY. The disciples of Jesus, those sympathetic to his cause and who considered themselves to be followers, not only had the opportunity to relocate the body, THEY HAD THE BODY, given to them by Pilate to do with as they chose. The disciples of Jesus were in fact the last ones to be in certain possession of the body.

THE DISCIPLES HAD THE OPPORTUNITY.

As long as the disciples of Jesus are the clear and obvious suspects, with essentially NO OBSTRUCTIONS to prevent them from carrying out their plans, THEN THE DISCIPLES ARE THE OBVIOUS ANSWER TO THE QUESTION OF THE EMPTY GRAVE AND MISSING CORPSE. The very LEAST LIKELY claim, that the corpse came back to life, left the tomb on it's own, and then eventually flew away, HAS NO REASONABLE PLAUSIBILITY AT ALL!

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
As I already pointed out, the possibility that the Jewish authorities might once again intervene should have been perfectly obvious to the disciples. Since they were dealing with a perishable cargo, haste was clearly called for. Not only the possibility that the Jewish authorities intervening, but the perspective of tens or hundreds of thousands of people
returning from the Passover ceremonies and clogging the roads indicate a very pressing reason why the journey should have begun at the earliest possible moment.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
What does the narrative tell us?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Fail to see the relevance to what I said.


You are not trying. The relevance is that there was a clear and obvious need to "get out of Dodge" at the earliest possible time. The possibility that the Jewish authorities might intervene yet again was real, and the last thing they need was for a perishable cargo like a corpse to be stuck in the morass of pilgrims attempting to return home. The earliest possible time was just as soon as the the body was prepared and ready to go.

Matthew 27:
[60] and he (Jopseph) rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.


THIS is the earliest time.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
What does the narrative tell us?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: The narrative tells us that the tomb was sealed and a guard was placed there, in case the disciples decided to come and steal the body. (Matt 27:62-66).


The narrative also tells us that the tomb proved to be empty on Sunday morning, just as the priests feared. What the narrative DOES NOT tell us is that the priests opened the tomb on Saturday when they secured it to insure that the body was actually inside. This coupled with the fact that the tomb proved to be empty the next day, leads to the overwhelmingly obvious conclusion that the priests secured an EMPTY TOMB! The explanation that the tomb was empty because the corpse came back to life and left is and always has been obvious make believe.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Apparently, according to you, they were so concerned that they first went to Pilate, then went to a place as unclean as a graveyard on a high holy day, but were not really concerned with whether the body was actually in the tomb or not.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Then they were incompetent, according to your standards. Take that up with them, not me.


If the priests had been competent, they would have made sure that THEY had control of the body, right off of the cross. But the disciples were always one step ahead of them.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The fact that the priests took physical possession of the tomb on Saturday, and the tomb proved to be empty Sunday morning is inherent in the story, and not speculation.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: There are lots of things that are inherent in the story that you don't have a problem shoving to the side and replacing it with your own, speculative theories.


I have a problem with those elements of the story that are unrealistic to the point of foolishness. By removing the unrealistic claims and through the use of some of the available information contained within the story itself, the story can be brought into conformity with reason. Am I claiming then that my version is what happened historically? NO! There is no way of knowing how much of the story as presented by the Gospels, if any of it, is actually true. My version, slightly adjusted to eliminate the impossible elements, is at least plausible.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
I have already explained Paul's experience during his trip to Damascus based on his collapse because of massive dehydration. Do I really need to explain it again?

For_The_Kingdom wrote: You explained it? Oh yeahh, I remember when you explained it...was that the time you claimed that Paul was hallucinating because he had not ate or drank anything for 3 days...only to find out when we actually read the Scriptures that Paul had the "hallucination" FIRST, and THEN had no food or drink for 3 days?

This is Paul's version of events, years later, But you see, Paul was the affected person.
Paul was absolutely the LAST person who might be expected to know with clearity what actually occurred, and in what order.

If the information about the theory is erroneous, then what does that say about the theory itself? Just as erroneous.



This is Paul's version of events, years later, But you see, Paul was the affected person.
Paul was absolutely the LAST person who might be expected to know with clearity what actually occurred, and in what order.

Not eating for three days is not a serious problem. Not drinking for three days can be a life threatening problem. Especially under desert like conditions.

Wikipedia
Damascus
Climate
Its climate is classified as hot desert (BWh) in Köppen-Geiger system, due to the rain shadow effect of the Anti-Lebanon mountains and the prevailing ocean currents. Summers are dry and hot with less humidity.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Damascus

***

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Dehydration", is thus a term that has loosely been used to mean loss of water, regardless of whether it is as water and solutes (mainly sodium) or free water. Those who refer to hypotonic dehydration therefore refer to solute loss and thus loss of intravascular volume but in the presence of exaggerated intravascular volume depletion for a given amount of total body water gain. It is true that neurological complications can occur in hypotonic and hypertonic states. The former can lead to seizures, while the latter can lead to osmotic cerebral edema upon rapid rehydration."

"For severe cases of dehydration where fainting, unconsciousness, or other severely inhibiting symptom is present (the patient is incapable of standing or thinking clearly),
emergency attention is required. Fluids containing a proper balance of replacement electrolytes are given orally or intravenously with continuing assessment of electrolyte status; complete resolution is the norm in all but the most extreme cases."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dehydration

***

Survival skills
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Water
A human being can survive an average of three to five days without the intake of water. The issues presented by the need for water dictate that unnecessary water loss by perspiration be avoided in survival situations. The need for water increases with exercise.

A typical person will lose minimally two to maximally four liters of water per day under ordinary conditions, and more in hot, dry, or cold weather. Four to six liters of water or
other liquids are generally required each day in the wilderness to avoid dehydration and to keep the body functioning properly. The U.S. Army survival manual does not recommend that you drink water only when thirsty, as this leads to under hydrating. Instead, water should be drunk at regular intervals. Other groups recommend rationing water through "water discipline".

A lack of water causes dehydration, which may result in lethargy, headaches, dizziness, confusion, and eventually death. Even mild dehydration reduces endurance and impairs
concentration, which is dangerous in a survival situation where clear thinking is essential.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Survival_skills

***

3 days without water - 3 weeks without food.

Rule of Threes - Survival
Written by Administrator
US Army Survival Manual

In any extreme situation you cannot survive for more than:

3 minutes without air - 3 hours without shelter
3 days without water - 3 weeks without food.
http://www.ruleof3survival.com/ INFORMATION
***

The Great Outdoors beta
Questions

For those who aren't familiar with the rule, it's that you can't live more than:

3 minutes without breathing (drowning, asphyxiation)
3 hours without shelter in an extreme environment (exposure)
3 days without water (dehydration)
3 weeks without food (starvation)
http://outdoors.stackexchange.com/quest ... en-for-foo...

***

Three is Company - (Survival Rules of Three)
In survival you need to know what your body is capable of – Hopefully, after reading this, you will never have to find out the hard way. By remembering the hard fast rules of survival known as the “rule of threes", you will know where to put your priorities in a survival situation.
Here they are in order:
You can survive 3 minutes without oxygen;
You can survive 3 hours without shelter;
You can survive 3 days without water; and,
You can survive 3 weeks without food. (Can you imagine that? Most of us are thinking more like 3 minutes without food… or maximum 3 hours!! )

As for water…while you may be able to last 3 days without water, the truth is, you will probably start to feel the effects of dehydration after only 12 hours or so. Our bodies are made up of water and without it you will not be able to think as clearly.
http://www.survivorjane.com/index.php?o ... article&id... 64

***

Symptoms
by Mayo Clinic Staff
Severe dehydration, a medical emergency, can cause:

Extreme thirst
Extreme fussiness or sleepiness in infants and children; irritability and confusion in adults
Very dry mouth, skin and mucous membranes
Lack of sweating
Little or no urination — any urine that is produced will be dark yellow or amber
Sunken eyes
Shriveled and dry skin that lacks elasticity and doesn't "bounce back" when pinched into a fold
In infants, sunken fontanels — the soft spots on the top of a baby's head
Low blood pressure
Rapid heartbeat
Rapid breathing
No tears when crying
Fever
In the most serious cases, delirium or unconsciousness
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dehydr ... N=symptoms

Causes
By Mayo Clinic staff
Dehydration occurs when there isn't enough water to replace what's lost throughout the day. Your system literally dries out. Sometimes dehydration occurs for simple reasons: You don't drink enough because you're sick or busy, or because you lack access to safe drinking water when you're traveling, hiking or camping.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dehydr ... ION=causes

Complications
By Mayo Clinic staff
Dehydration can lead to serious complications, including:

Heat injury. If you don't drink enough fluids when you're exercising vigorously and perspiring heavily, you may end up with a heat injury, ranging in severity from mild heat cramps to heat exhaustion to potentially life-threatening heatstroke.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dehydr ... plications

Acts 9:
[9] And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.


Acts indicates that Paul went three days without drinking. Paul was therefore critically dehydrated. Dehydration causes, among other things, loss of vision, confusion and hallucinations. Like it or not, Paul's dehydration explains his entire experience.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
After Jesus' unfair and dishonorable execution, James became one of the main spokesmen for the divine nature of his brother's earthly mission. But then James had known Jesus his entire life, and prior to his brother's crucifixion neither James or any of Jesus' other siblings indicated that Jesus was in any way special. If you want an explanation of James' conversion after the crucifixion, explain how James and Jesus' other brothers and sisters grew up in the presence of God and yet seemed to have had no clue.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: Some people won't believe regardless of the evidence, apparently. Judas knew Jesus, too. Yet, betrayed him.


I am all about physical evidence. Judas betrayed God for money. REALLY? But your point about Judas raises another question. The Jewish priests considered Jesus a troublemaker and were determined to be rid of him once and for all. But then, according to Gospel Matthew, their guards returned from the tomb with reports that an angel had come down from the sky, caused a great earthquake, and rolled away the great stone from the tomb. An obvious act of God. The priests should have been petrified with fear! Instead the Gospels indicate that the priests continued to work against the interests of their own God. The priests were not merely incompetent, they were clearly INSANE! These claims, like the story of the women going to the tomb knowing they had no access to the body, are obviously the rankest of nonsense.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Also, Peter and James were not much impressed with Paul initially.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: They were skeptical of his past.


THe "incident at Antioch" occurred roughly 15-20 years after Paul had undergone his conversion. Peter and James were suspicious of Paul's associations with the gentiles. But Paul brought money from his gentile congregations. Which smoothed things over.

Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
The Christian movement was based on rumors spread by the early disciples of Jesus. I suspect that this is true. There never has been a single Christian movement however, even from early times.

For_The_Kingdom wrote: So, the book of Acts isn't true?


I am not claiming that the author of Acts purposely lied. I have no reason to suppose that he wasn't a true believer just as Paul was. Just as you are. Just as Muslims and Mormons are. True belief is no protection at all from subscribing to nonsense however.


Tired of the Nonsense wrote:
Christianity has always been a polyglot of disparate claims and beliefs. Which is shown very clearly in the many disparate claims and beliefs concerning Jesus that were recorded in ancient times.

1 and 2 Clement
Shepherd of Hermas
Didache
Epistle of Barnabas
Apocalypse of Peter
Third Epistle to the Corinthians
Gospel of Thomas
Oxyrhynchus Gospels
Egerton Gospel
Fayyum Fragment
Dialogue of the Saviour
The Gospel of the Ebionites ("GE") – 7 quotations by Epiphanius.
The Gospel of the Hebrews ("GH") – 1 quotation ascribed to Cyril of Jerusalem, plus GH 2–7 quotations by Clement, Origen, and Jerome.
The Gospel of the Nazarenes
Gospel of the Ebionites
Gospel of the Hebrews
Gospel of the Nazoraeans
Secret Gospel of Mark
Gospel of Marcion
Gospel of Judas
Gospel of Thomas
Gospel of Marcion (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Mani (3rd century)
Gospel of Apelles (mid-late 2nd century)
Gospel of Bardesanes (late 2nd - early 3rd century)
Gospel of Basilides (mid 2nd century)
Gospel of Peter
Gospel of Nicodemus (also called the "Acts of Pilate")
Pseudo-Cyril of Jerusalem, On the Life and the Passion of Christ
Gospel of Bartholomew
Questions of Bartholomew
Resurrection of Jesus
Apocryphon of James (also called the "Secret Book of James")
Book of Thomas the Contender
Dialogue of the Saviour
Gospel of Judas (also called the "Gospel of Judas Iscariot")
Gospel of Mary (also called the "Gospel of Mary Magdalene")
Gospel of Philip
Greek Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians)
The Sophia of Jesus Christ
Coptic Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Apocalypse of Paul)
Gospel of Truth
Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Apocalypse of Peter)
Pistis Sophia
Second Treatise of the Great Seth
Apocryphon of John (also called the "Secret Gospel of John")
Coptic Gospel of the Egyptians (distinct from the Greek Gospel of the Egyptians)
Trimorphic Protennoia
Acts of Andrew
Acts of Barnabas
Acts of John
Acts of the Martyrs
Acts of Paul
Acts of Paul and Thecla
Acts of Peter
Acts of Peter and Andrew
Acts of Peter and Paul
Acts of Peter and the Twelve
Acts of Philip
Acts of Pilate
Acts of Thomas
Acts of Timothy
Acts of Xanthippe, Polyxena, and Rebecca
Epistle of Barnabas
Epistles of Clement
Epistle of the Corinthians to Paul
Epistle of Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans
Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallians
Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians
Epistle to Diognetus
Epistle to the Laodiceans (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Epistle to Seneca the Younger (an epistle in the name of Paul)
Third Epistle to the Corinthians - accepted in the past by some in the Armenian Orthodox church.
Apocalypse of Paul (distinct from the Coptic Apocalypse of Paul)
Apocalypse of Peter (distinct from the Gnostic Apocalypse of Peter)
Apocalypse of Pseudo-Methodius
Apocalypse of Thomas (also called the Revelation of Thomas)
Apocalypse of Stephen (also called the Revelation of Stephen)
First Apocalypse of James (also called the First Revelation of James)
Second Apocalypse of James (also called the Second Revelation of James)
The Shepherd of Hermas
The Descent of Mary

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Testament_apocrypha

For_The_Kingdom wrote: And through a selective process, all of those books and epistles were weeded out, and the Books that compile the Bible made the playoffs, while others didn't.


That wasn't the point. The point was that these many and varied documents represent the many and varied beliefs concerning Jesus that have existed from the very beginning. Nor has the formation of the Catholic church proved to be a unifying version of Christianity, as the splintering off of the Eastern Orthodox church and then the division of the western faction of Christianity into Protestant and Catholic has established.

Let me express my apologies for any errors that turn up. Long posts are very difficult to get error free. I have offered my wife the job of executive secretary and chief editor, but she has refused the salary. There was a time when my hugs were actually worth something. But that was before I got old and ugly.
Image
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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