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.
Actually... a vast amount of evidence concludes that Jesus of Nazareth (as I prefer to call him) DID exist. The problem is that the evidence historically has clearly been tampered with. The amount of evidence, however, indicates it was a result of someone named "Jesus" being there.
When I "fell from grace", as all the myths and concepts of Christianity melted away, Jesus (now just a man without the supernatural template) was still holding water as a reliable person to listen to. I did some research on him and realized that he was a teacher and generally decent guy with great ideas on how to be a decent person yourself.
The church really messed up what could have been a perfect poster boy for their beliefs... unfortunately their agenda of making money and having power would be corrupted if they didn't "God" him up a little.
Recently a friend (Heather) gave me a documentary to watch. It makes a lot of sense that Jesus was JUST a buddhist philosopher and the church rewrote or twisted history to join him to their faith. I invite you to watch this same documentary:
as far as I am aware of, Jesus's birth was recorded in Roman census records: the midwife, Mary, and one of Jesus's sisters were witness to his birth. :D (wish I still had source material for it)
He was just a man. A good man in my opinion. The church did what it's good at doing and obscured the facts by templating him with Mithra's mystical qualities to make him a 'hot property' and crush another faith by outdoing it. Its is the way of God. Just in this case, they found someone that was already impressive in real life and stole him.
I agree. Many of the teachings of Jesus are profound. The world would be a better place if people took his teachings to heart.
But did Jesus rise from the dead? Based upon the story told and the time they took to write it (30 years), no way!
I agree completely. The gospel writers tell all about what Jesus said, places he went to, how he acted and reacted, and it's all very plausible (minus the miracles).
However, the tone changes completely when they write of the resurrection. Almost no details. Jesus only spoke to disciples, never to crowds, and most of the 40 days of the resurrection are unaccounted for. This is the very time that Jesus should have been followed by thousands.
Why are there only four?
The early church decided these gophels were credible and had authority.
They do all tell their own story, each story is different.
Yes, well at 11 years old, and having grown up in a religious environment - the history of the political shinnanigans and willful lying of the early church wasn't something I had a lot of information on.
It's been at least 20 years since I read through he 4 gospels, so perhaps they perspectives are much more different than I perceived. At the time, however, to me, they all sounded like they were telling the "whole story" and not "someone's story"
My point is that yes, even between the ages of 11 and 14 as I read the book straight through, I could clearly recognize places where the story had been 'squeezed to fit'. That always struck me as meaning it wasn't entirely made-up, but it wasn't really true either. It wouldn't be until in my 20's that I came to understand that this is a very powerful tool of mythology.
I know that I'm smarter than your average cup of yoghurt, but how any grown people still believe in fairy tales that I couldn't for the life of me cling to belief in at 12 and 13 years old will always confound me.
What? You were 11 and not reading Origen's and Tertullian's writings? lol
When I was at the age of 17ish and had done a lot more study into scriptures and early church history than most teenagers, I became overtly skeptic. My skepticism stopped me from pursuing a life as a theologian (which is most likely a good thing), my skepticism was un-warranted and when it was placed under the microscope by Biblical scholars it was found wanting.
There was a historical Jesus He died, and He rose again, this is nearly a historical fact, well at least Jesus's followers believed 100% that He died and rose again.
Historians like N.T. Wright have wrote lengthy books defending not only the historicity of Jesus, but that the gospels do convey a relative actual story of the life of Jesus.
The works of Tommy-boy are resounding only in their omissions. The forgery of the Pericope Adulterae and the insertion of the Comma Johanneum for starters - but apologists never bring these things up when writing for an indoctrinated audience.
Apparently he considers the conflicting genealogies of Jesus to be minutiae Matthew 1:2-17 and Luke 3:23-38, as well as the fact that Mark and John don't even mention the miracle birth, a central tenet of the faith - which I cannot cite because they are not there. Hardly minutiae.
You are correct that in Mark 3:20-21 that Jesus' family seems to think he's crazy - but how can you explain Mary's actions considering she had been told by an Angel that her son was the Messiah? How could she possibly forget that encounter?
The Gospels can't even agree on Jesus' birthday. Matthew indicates that Jesus was born under the reign of Herod the Great (Matthew 2:1) and Luke says he was born while Quirinius was governor of Syria (Luke 2:2). This is impossible because Herod died in March of 4 BC and the census took place in 6 and 7 AD, about 10 years after Herod's death.
You can tout old Tommy boy as a scholar all you like, but until you can offer his explanation for these glaring 'minutiae' you might want to reconsider your sources.