A simple---but serious---question

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Athetotheist
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A simple---but serious---question

Post #1

Post by Athetotheist »

There are numerous god-men who died and rose from death in stories predating the time of Jesus. Considering the notable differences between the gospel accounts, and particularly the differences between the accounts of Jesus's supposed resurrection, here's a question for gospel apologists to think seriously about:

There are four resurrection accounts about Jesus in the Christian gospels. If the exact same accounts, with the exact same differences, were written about Osiris, Tammuz, Attis or any such god-man other than Jesus, would Christian apologists find all of those accounts believable?

And if they wouldn't find all of them believable, would they find any of them believable?

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #2

Post by TRANSPONDER »

Putting my theist hat on again, I'd say no because the Jesus story does read like eyewitness accounts of a real person doing real things, give or take whether one accepts the miracles or not. I don't deny that, on the faxceof it, the Gospels and indeed Acts together with Paul's letters, look like the records of real people and the things they did.

It is not surprising that many take them to be convincing as reliable testimony. I did myself for quite a long while and only being challenged to 'really read the Bible' made me realise they they are very unsafe as testimony and have more to with historical fiction - and polemical at that - than with honest recording of events.

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #3

Post by JehovahsWitness »

I believe only an idiot would expect four independent accounts of an event to be entirely identical.

If the independent accounts can be harmonized (as is the case with the four gospels) then no person with an iota of critical thinking skills would find the variants problematic. Indeed being identical logically suggest copying or duplicity which would effectively reduced the total number of testimonies.

So to answer the question, I would not discard independent accounts of an event(s) because they were not identical. Whether I would find the testimonies believable would depend on the actual content (how historically sound the details were, what verifiable evidence exists for the events, whether the context had an intrinsic logic etc,)





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FURTHER READING Synopsis
http://debatingchristianity.com/forum/v ... 83#p926583
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CONTRADICTIONS , SEQUENCING and ...EASTER CHALLENGES*
* harmonizing the resurrection narratives
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Re: A simple---but serious---question

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Post by Athetotheist »

[Replying to JehovahsWitness in post #3I'm asking if Christian apologists would give the same benefit of the doubt to non-Christian accounts for not being "identical" that they give to the Christian ones. If they wouldn't, then they have no room to expect anyone to cut the Christian accounts that much slack.

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

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Post by JehovahsWitness »

Athetotheist wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 7:55 am [Replying to JehovahsWitness in post #3I'm asking if Christian apologists would give the same benefit of the doubt to non-Christian accounts for not being "identical" that they give to the Christian ones. If they wouldn't, then they have no room to expect anyone to cut the Christian accounts that much slack.
I understand what you are askjng; did I not anwser the question?
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"For if we live, we live to Jehovah, and if we die, we die to Jehovah. So both if we live and if we die, we belong to Jehovah" -
Romans 14:8

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #6

Post by nobspeople »

Athetotheist wrote: Thu Dec 02, 2021 9:04 pm There are numerous god-men who died and rose from death in stories predating the time of Jesus. Considering the notable differences between the gospel accounts, and particularly the differences between the accounts of Jesus's supposed resurrection, here's a question for gospel apologists to think seriously about:

There are four resurrection accounts about Jesus in the Christian gospels. If the exact same accounts, with the exact same differences, were written about Osiris, Tammuz, Attis or any such god-man other than Jesus, would Christian apologists find all of those accounts believable?

And if they wouldn't find all of them believable, would they find any of them believable?
Believable is the term to focus on here. Anyone can believe anything no matter the facts presented (or lack of). So NO, if those other resurrected guys weren't their chosen god, or hindered what one's told to believe, they wouldn't believe them and wouldn't see them as believable. It's about choice more than honesty.

We've seen in this thread people call others stupid who think different writers writing about the same thing should be exact in their telling, and this drives this point home:
anything that hinders once chosen life style agenda is wrong and terrible and, in this case, stupid.
That's all we need to know.
Have a great, potentially godless, day!

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #7

Post by otseng »

JehovahsWitness wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 6:47 am I believe only an idiot would expect four independent accounts of an event to be entirely identical.
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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #8

Post by JehovahsWitness »

Sorry let me rephrase
JehovahsWitness wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 6:47 am


I believe it would be absolutely illogical and defy all we know about human expression to expect four independent accounts of an event to be entirely identical. Given the Proven way people filtrer information and the scientific fact that no two people can occupy the same space at the same time, it defies all logical thinking to expect identical accounts of an event from seperate independent obervers much less from accounts compiled from various Witnesses and /or sources. There is absolutely no academic basis for such a requirement.

If the independent accounts can be harmonized (as is the case with the four gospels) then thinking skills applied, to the variants are not problematic. Indeed being identical logically suggest copying or duplicity which would effectively reduced the total number of testimonies.

So to answer the question, I would not discard independent accounts of an event(s) because they were not identical. Whether I would find the testimonies believable would depend on the actual content (how historically sound the details were, what verifiable evidence exists for the events, whether the context had an intrinsic logic etc,)
CONCLUSION As been said on a completely different topic
nobspeople wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 9:25 amIt would be foolish, IMO, for anyone who believes in 'free will' and 'god didn't make people to be robots' to think the writers didn't interject some of their own ideas and write in a biased fashion
I Will say on THIS topic....

It would be foolish IMO to believe that four independent accounts of the same event should be absolutely identical in content.
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"For if we live, we live to Jehovah, and if we die, we die to Jehovah. So both if we live and if we die, we belong to Jehovah" -
Romans 14:8

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #9

Post by bjs1 »

[Replying to Athetotheist in post #1]

Interesting question. The story of gods dying and rising from the dead reverberates throughout history and across cultural boundaries.

For my part, once I was convinced of theism in general, I found monotheism more reasonable than polytheism. If a polytheistic faith had the exact same accounts as the Gospels it would still have the underlying problems of polytheism. If the account of Isis and Osiris were more similar to that of Jesus this would not remove the larger contextual issues with paganism.

In short, the story of Jesus is a powerful part of Christianity, but we can’t separate it from the rest of the Christian faith.
Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.
-Charles Darwin

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Re: A simple---but serious---question

Post #10

Post by 1213 »

Athetotheist wrote: Thu Dec 02, 2021 9:04 pm ...
There are four resurrection accounts about Jesus in the Christian gospels. If the exact same accounts, with the exact same differences, were written about Osiris, Tammuz, Attis or any such god-man other than Jesus, would Christian apologists find all of those accounts believable?

And if they wouldn't find all of them believable, would they find any of them believable?
For me Jesus is believable because of what he taught. If we would have just the resurrection story, it would be quite meaningless to me. For me the greatness of Jesus comes from what he said.

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