Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

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Jagella
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Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #1

Post by Jagella »

As many of you may be aware, real-Jesus apologists base their entire case for a historical Jesus on written stories. Scholars like Bart Ehrman, who says that a historical Jesus "almost certainly existed," is "almost certain" Jesus existed because he says he and his fellow Bible scholars can "tease out" fact from fiction in these stories using rigorous historical methods. Needless to say, many of the real-Jesus apologists in this forum agree that the stories of Jesus are, as one member here has said, "overwhelming" evidence that Jesus existed. Of course, not all of us are overwhelmed by these stories as evidence for a historical Jesus, and we appear to be at an impasse neither side proving their case.

So I have an idea: to see if people really can tell fact from fiction by reading and studying stories, I've decided to post four stories here. Please read and study these stories, and then tell me which are true stories with real people and which are fictional stories with made-up people:
  • 1. Rick left Edinboro, Pennsylvania to return to his hometown of Pittsburgh. He earned a degree at a college in the Pittsburgh area and found work there.

    2. Clyde got bored on his family's horse farm in Kentucky and moved to Nashville to play guitar in a country-western band.

    3. Sandy met and married Josh, and the two of them started a successful tattoo parlor in Los Angeles.

    4. Joe became very ill when he came down with a case of pneumonia. He spent two months in a nursing home and was hospitalized twice.
Remember that the case for a historical Jesus stands or falls on the stories of Jesus being stories of a real person.

Question for Debate: Can you read and study these stories and use logic to tell if the persons in these stories are real or fictional?

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Re: Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #2

Post by Tart »

Jagella wrote: As many of you may be aware, real-Jesus apologists base their entire case for a historical Jesus on written stories. Scholars like Bart Ehrman, who says that a historical Jesus "almost certainly existed," is "almost certain" Jesus existed because he says he and his fellow Bible scholars can "tease out" fact from fiction in these stories using rigorous historical methods. Needless to say, many of the real-Jesus apologists in this forum agree that the stories of Jesus are, as one member here has said, "overwhelming" evidence that Jesus existed. Of course, not all of us are overwhelmed by these stories as evidence for a historical Jesus, and we appear to be at an impasse neither side proving their case.

So I have an idea: to see if people really can tell fact from fiction by reading and studying stories, I've decided to post four stories here. Please read and study these stories, and then tell me which are true stories with real people and which are fictional stories with made-up people:
  • 1. Rick left Edinboro, Pennsylvania to return to his hometown of Pittsburgh. He earned a degree at a college in the Pittsburgh area and found work there.

    2. Clyde got bored on his family's horse farm in Kentucky and moved to Nashville to play guitar in a country-western band.

    3. Sandy met and married Josh, and the two of them started a successful tattoo parlor in Los Angeles.

    4. Joe became very ill when he came down with a case of pneumonia. He spent two months in a nursing home and was hospitalized twice.
Remember that the case for a historical Jesus stands or falls on the stories of Jesus being stories of a real person.

Question for Debate: Can you read and study these stories and use logic to tell if the persons in these stories are real or fictional?
It is lacking too much detail to know for sure... And is an unverifiable, single, report....

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Re: Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #3

Post by William »

[Replying to post 1 by Jagella]
1. Rick left Edinboro, Pennsylvania to return to his hometown of Pittsburgh. He earned a degree at a college in the Pittsburgh area and found work there.


This could be true.
2. Clyde got bored on his family's horse farm in Kentucky and moved to Nashville to play guitar in a country-western band.
This could be true.
3. Sandy met and married Josh, and the two of them started a successful tattoo parlor in Los Angeles.
This could be true.
4. Joe became very ill when he came down with a case of pneumonia. He spent two months in a nursing home and was hospitalized twice.
This could be true.
Question for Debate: Can you read and study these stories and use logic to tell if the persons in these stories are real or fictional?
All the elements in the stories provided, allow for the conclusion - based on the hearsay - that the stories could be true.

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Jagella
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Re: Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #4

Post by Jagella »

Tart wrote:It is lacking too much detail to know for sure... And is an unverifiable, single, report....
Then we have established that at least for you fact is hard to tell from fiction--at least with this much detail and only one report. But what of these stories being "unverifiable"? In what way are stories verified? I could add lots of details to these stories. How would more detail help you determine if these stories are fact or fiction?

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Post #5

Post by Tart »

I agree with William... It could be true... If we had no reason to question such things, someone told me about their friend using the same statement you did, id have no reason to question the statement. However, this is like a test of if we can tell which is true and which is fiction... We have good reason to question everything you are saying, and anyone of them could be true or fiction... Couldnt know for sure

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Jagella
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Re: Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #6

Post by Jagella »

William wrote:All the elements in the stories provided, allow for the conclusion - based on the hearsay - that the stories could be true.
You aren't answering the question for debate. I'm not asking if these stories could be true but are they true.

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Post #7

Post by Jagella »

Tart wrote: I agree with William... It could be true... If we had no reason to question such things, someone told me about their friend using the same statement you did, id have no reason to question the statement. However, this is like a test of if we can tell which is true and which is fiction... We have good reason to question everything you are saying, and anyone of them could be true or fiction... Couldnt know for sure
What would keep me from getting other people to corroborate stories I have made up?

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Re: Telling Fact from Fiction: A Test

Post #8

Post by William »

[Replying to post 6 by Jagella]
You aren't answering the question for debate. I'm not asking if these stories could be true but are they true.
Therein is the problem.

The TRUTH of the matter is, they could be true. Thus the question for debate is a loaded one which forces the individual participant to answer "No, they are not" which itself, isn't truthful, and thus makes no valid point.

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Post #9

Post by StuartJ »

No

Nowhere near enough detail to tell if the persons COULD be real.

Zero evidence to confirm they ARE real.
No one EVER demonstrates that "God" exists outside their parietal cortex.

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Post #10

Post by William »

[Replying to post 9 by StuartJ]
Nowhere near enough detail to tell if the persons COULD be real.
Untrue. There is 100% detail to conclude that the persons COULD be real.

Telling fact from fiction involves understanding real names, situations, etc - the details are all recognizably factual.

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