I am really sorry if this has been posted before.
If you knew me in person, you would know I love getting into discussions with people about religion. One of the questions that seems to keep coming into the discussion loop is Jesus.
So I was at a social gathering the other night at a restaurant and I dropped my silverware and out of habit I said "Jesus Christ!" And a random girl that was a friend of a friend said, "Don't use the Lords name in vain."
So obviously we got into a debate.
I brought up the point in the discussion that Jesus never existed. Well everyone looked at me like i was off the wall insane...
At that point the discussion just turned into incoherent ramblings and Grrrr... So frustrating that people base their whole life on hearsay! Simply dumbfounding!!!
Help me feel better... seriously.
You do not know that. A lot of history has been destroyed for starters...
Oral tradition was a credible thing back then, so we cannot dismiss oral tradition.
The real face of Jesus> I found it in arabian site.. lol..
This really boils down to a decision based on primary evidence or hearsay. With respect to the existence of Jesus as a person, there is no primary evidence that I am aware of (such as documents supposedly written by Jesus, his body, etc.) for us to examine and make a solid argument that Jesus actually was a person. Some have claimed he was a concept stemming from regional religious mythology and that the gospels and our current understanding of him are an amalgam of Jewish, pagan, Egyptian, Sumerian, Greco-Roman, etc. mythology. And it certainly seems plausible he was the creation of a cult turned mainstream. I don't think this contention should be dismissed simply because "most scholars" supposedly "think" he did exist. These so-called "experts" or "scholars" are limited by the same thing you and I are - no primary evidence. Expert or not, we are all left to speculate as to whether he actually was a person in history- unless, of course, there is new evidence to support his existence as a person.
Jesus mythology is so pervasive in American society (and it's like we live amongst Jesus zombies), that it is no surprise people look at you as if you're crazy to claim Jesus did not exist as a person. This is simply a reflection of a bigger problem that I see - the formation of opinions, beliefs, and conclusions made without critical evaluation of primary evidence (if it even exists) .
The bar will always be set by the specific claims and the evidence provided to support the claims.
The burden of proof always rests upon those presenting any claims. It is not a question of proving Jesus never lived, it is a question of whether there is sufficient, valid, credible supporting evidence for any claims about Jesus. And in the case of Jesus, all we really have are Christian writings based essentially on hearsay.
There is 0 evidence for a regular man called Jesus that did not do anything the Bible said he did, why is this important to you? Why do you need to believe a man existed that didn't do anything? I'm just curious as to your motives.
I'll say it again, the Jesus of the Bible is complete fantasy, it’s meaningless, pointless and a complete fabrication out of thin air to say that a man like Jesus existed. The only thing you are doing is giving Christians a sliver of hope, that is all they need when you say a man may have existed that was not the god Jesus but just a man, it does us no good to keep this fantasy going.
Making bold assertions without evidence doesn’t help you my friend!
I’ll use the same evidence you have for “Jesus PROBABLY being a real person” to prove Dionysus is probably are real person:
Many historians believe that Dionysus was a real man, the myths about a god were based on his life. A Theban princess, Semele, was impregnated by Zeus, but we believe this was just a story and she was actually raped in her home. We believe a young Dionysus was kidnapped by pirates while he was sleeping, but the part about him transforming the whole crew into Dolphins must be a fabrication added later. There must be some truth to these stories, they could not just be made up because we know everything on TV is true. All stories must be based on a real person, especially if we like the story, then of course it becomes more likely that it is based on a true event.
Do you mean "did he exist?" or "is He the Lamb of God who died for our sins?" because those are very different questions. Evaluating historical sources is a complicated task-- you look at the sources, compare to other sources, take into account probable biases, and cetera.
Do I think that there was a person in history named Yeshua Ben Yusef? Probably; there are enough historical sources saying that such a person existed. He was probably a rabbi and/or Jewish activist/ dissident opposing Roman colonial rule.
Do I think that his mother was a virgin when she gave birth to him? That strikes me as very unlikely, especially since the historical records that say she was a virgin start much later-- early texts just say she was unmarried (which doesn't seem quite as unlikely--although, telling Christians that early sources actually only said tha Jesus was a bastard is definitely At Your Own Risk). Elaine Pagels (in several of her books, as I recall) attributes the change to a debate between the gnostic and Pauline Christians in the first century CE.
Do I think he was born near the winter solstice? No, I think that part is probably syncretism. It's inconsistent with the shepherds being out in the fields at the time, and while I haven't seen anything indicating the date of Christmas was altered, the medieval Catholic Church was really good at syncretism. For instance, Nennius's Annales Cambriae (sorry I don't remember the year off the top of my head) does mention during the same year "date of Easter changed" and "first celebration of Easter among the pagans." Somehow I don't think that's a coincidence.
Which brings me to his death.
Do I think he was crucified? Probably--plenty of historical records of that and the Romans crucified a lot of people, especially Jewish dissidents, of which there were plenty at the time. Do I think he rose from the dead? Not likely. I've heard speculation that his students/followers/allies/whatever they were faked his death, but I haven't investigated them because I'm not particularly interested.
See what I mean?
Sorry that happened. I was forced into an agreement "not to use the lord's name in vain" by the family I live with. However one thing that I have noted is that I have not yet found a productive way to debate with theists. Their brains are like concrete.... almost impossible to penetrate. If anyone knows a good way to debate and crack that concrete open... let me know.