Historical evidence of Jesus

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
13,120
Okay, so you have defined your standard of evidence that would convince you. That doesn't mean that everyone who doesn't have those same standards are unwarranted in their belief in the existence of Christ. It simply means they were able to draw a conclusion that is different from yours based on the evidence that we do have.

The purpose of the one piece of information you chose to comment on in regards to Dark Matter, was to show you that a scientific and academic stance doesn't require a 2+2 approach.
I did not say they are unwarranted , I merely asked them to provide evidence..... because the character is so extraordinary, it is normal to be more fussy about the quality of the evidence required in his case

Look at it another way, thought experiment, purely imaginary situation. You are being tried, and your life depends on whether the judge and jury are convinced that Jesus existed... if they are , you will be executed.... Will you be satisfied with the current level of evidence or will you have your lawyer argue vehemently that the evidence is simply not good enough.... Or put more simply are you so absolutely certain that this character really existed that you are willing to bet your life on it ?
 
Likes: Harshaw

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
13,120
Ironically, the belief in the Christ myth seems to be a form of fanatical religious belief that cannot be touched by evidence... :winktongue:
Evidently "evidence" is a word that has a different meaning to you... I hope you are never tried by a jury who accepts the same poor level of evidence as you seem to be doing
 
Evidently "evidence" is a word that has a different meaning to you... I hope you are never tried by a jury who accepts the same poor level of evidence as you seem to be doing
Well I just don't find it convincing. Why does the majority not accept these conspiracy theories, then? It's all a massive cover-up, a conspiracy lasting several centuries and involving millions of people? It's too convenient... what else are we to believe, that thousands of years ago, our ancestors have been visited by Ancient Aliens?
 
Aug 2018
307
Southern Indiana
They both helped the poor, both liked to hang out in the wilderness. They were both anti-establishment and wanted by the man. Both had a posse of odd characters with a close friend named John. Both enjoyed communal meals. Jesus had a girlfriend named Mary Magdalene, Robin Hood had a girlfriend named Marion. Jesus was baptized by John, Robin Hood was dunked in a creek by Little John. It's like they are the same archetype.
 
Jan 2019
130
USA
I did not say they are unwarranted , I merely asked them to provide evidence..... because the character is so extraordinary, it is normal to be more fussy about the quality of the evidence required in his case

Look at it another way, thought experiment, purely imaginary situation. You are being tried, and your life depends on whether the judge and jury are convinced that Jesus existed... if they are , you will be executed.... Will you be satisfied with the current level of evidence or will you have your lawyer argue vehemently that the evidence is simply not good enough.... Or put more simply are you so absolutely certain that this character really existed that you are willing to bet your life on it ?
You are correct. The evidence that exists is not enough to convince you and others. Unfortunately, that is all we have currently and we have to draw our conclusions based on that.

In regards to your question posing whether I believe it enough to bet my life on it. No, but there are a lot of things in this arena that I choose to trust the academic consensus on that I can't personally validate.

Evidently "evidence" is a word that has a different meaning to you... I hope you are never tried by a jury who accepts the same poor level of evidence as you seem to be doing
No, I don't think it's fair to insinuate he is confused by the word. I think he has a different standard of evidence in the context of this conversation. If you want to hold the stance as to what is provable in a court of law, do you really want to go down the list of universally agreed upon theories that would be up for contention? That is kind of a silly stance to take.
 

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
13,120
How else do you draw conclusions on matters in which you aren't an expert but to lean on the expertise of others? You take a general consensus of experts on the subject and draw your own opinion. Can you find a piece of evidence that would indicate that there is a majority of scholarly and historical practioners who believe that Christ is a myth? If so, you can cite and it would spark another topic of conversation. if not, that's okay, you can still have your standards of evidence.

If all it takes is a handful of individuals who are selling a book to an audience to convince you of contention, then you have much more pressing topics to be concerned about.
This is not rocket science. The information is fairly simple and available to all... you can reach your own conclusions....

Its a major mistake to "lean on the opinion of experts" until such "experts" have been proven to 1- actually be experts, 2- be objective and unbiased...

The french have a saying "les conseilleurs ne sont pas les payeurs"....... roughly translates as "those who advise are not the ones who pay"

With regards to the argument from authority, since the claim is made that there is a consensus of experts I'd like to see some actual stats on that... Because in between those who are christian (and have a dog in the fight), those who have been raised in christian culture (and therefore have a pavlovian reflex that leads them to think that Jesus did exist), those who are afraid to put forth a contrary statement (because that closes many doors), those who are completely indifferent because its not their area of expertise (a historian focusing on the 17th century for example will not have an opinion on the matter), those who dont care (I bet there are not many hindu or chinese historians who look into this matter and that is one third of humanity right there) I very much doubt there is such a high number of unbiased historians behind this claim....
 
Likes: Harshaw
Jan 2019
130
USA
This is not rocket science. The information is fairly simple and available to all... you can reach your own conclusions....

Its a major mistake to "lean on the opinion of experts" until such "experts" have been proven to 1- actually be experts, 2- be objective and unbiased...

The french have a saying "les conseilleurs ne sont pas les payeurs"....... roughly translates as "those who advise are not the ones who pay"

With regards to the argument from authority, since the claim is made that there is a consensus of experts I'd like to see some actual stats on that... Because in between those who are christian (and have a dog in the fight), those who have been raised in christian culture (and therefore have a pavlovian reflex that leads them to think that Jesus did exist), those who are afraid to put forth a contrary statement (because that closes many doors), those who are completely indifferent because its not their area of expertise (a historian focusing on the 17th century for example will not have an opinion on the matter), those who dont care (I bet there are not many hindu or chinese historians who look into this matter and that is one third of humanity right there) I very much doubt there is such a high number of unbiased historians behind this claim....
You're absolutely right, it isn't rocket science. A person can reach their own conclusions and should based on the available evidence.

By objectivity do you mean an Atheist activist who wrote the book that you linked earlier? I don't want to accuse you of anything or put words in your mouth. However, it seems like you are the one who is having issues with objectivity. I'm not sure if the studies you are proposing exist. However, it would be very interesting to see the results. If you were to contribute any piece of academic study or research paper, I would be happy to read it. It may sway my opinion on the matter.

Speaking further on objectivity, it would appear that most of these experts refute the stories in the scriptures as fable. In the same breath, they accept the reality that a person named Christ existed at some point and triggered a Jewish sect to be formed. As a result, I'm not entirely sure what motivation they would have in standing on both sides of the aisle.
 
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tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
13,120
You're absolutely right, it isn't rocket science. A person can reach their own conclusions and should based on the available evidence.

By objectivity do you mean an Atheist activist who wrote the book that you linked earlier? I don't want to accuse you of anything or put words in your mouth. However, it seems like you are the one who is having issues with objectivity. I'm not sure if the studies you are proposing exist. However, it would be very interesting to see the results. If you were to contribute any piece of academic study or research paper, I would be happy to read it. It may sway my opinion on the matter.
Nope... that's why if your read my post I did mention he is an "active atheist" and thus probably biased.... Of course probably no more than a christian activist on the other side..... The purpose of the post was to simply show that there are other opinions out there (based upon reseach and academic work - the quality of which of course can be challenged- not just dogma)..... However also note that being an atheist or a christian does not necessarily mean bias on that topic, one would have to look in more detail at waht that particular person is claiming and why before coming to that conclusion.
I would be interested to see the opinion of someone who clearly does NOT have a dog in the fight in this matter, like, once again, a hindu, a taoist etc.... Have not been able to find one so far though...

What sort of academic paper are you looking for ? The works of Richard Carrier seem to be the most famous on the topic.... But I dont have an opinion on the quality of it, my concern is not his theory, my concern is the lack of hard evidence. And I dont agree with the position of those who cannot provide this evidence and instead demand that alternative theories be provided (note that this demand for alternative theories to be provided is a common trick... it is notably used by those who claim that the resurrection is a historical event..... their modus operandi is to say that "oh if you say that Jesus was not risen from the dead you MUST explain how he came to be seen alive after his death")...

Note that a similar level of evidence exists for the resurrection.... It is mentionned in all Gospels and the Pauline letters... and even in Josephus

About this time there lived Jesus, a wise man, if indeed one ought to call him a man. For he was one who performed surprising deeds and was a teacher of such people as accept the truth gladly. He won over many Jews and many of the Greeks. He was the Christ. And when, upon the accusation of the principal men among us, Pilate had condemned him to a cross, those who had first come to love him did not cease. He appeared to them spending a third day restored to life, for the prophets of God had foretold these things and a thousand other marvels about him.

Those who argue for the resurrection (or other miracles) use similar arguments as those who argue for the existence of a "historical Jesus"....

I will assume this level of evidence is not sufficient to accept the resurrection as a historical fact....
 
Likes: Harshaw
Jan 2019
130
USA
Nope... that's why if your read my post I did mention he is an "active atheist" and thus probably biased.... Of course probably no more than a christian activist on the other side..... The purpose of the post was to simply show that there are other opinions out there (based upon reseach and academic work - the quality of which of course can be challenged- not just dogma)..... However also note that being an atheist or a christian does not necessarily mean bias on that topic, one would have to look in more detail at waht that particular person is claiming and why before coming to that conclusion.
I would be interested to see the opinion of someone who clearly does NOT have a dog in the fight in this matter, like, once again, a hindu, a taoist etc.... Have not been able to find one so far though...

What sort of academic paper are you looking for ? The works of Richard Carrier seem to be the most famous on the topic.... But I dont have an opinion on the quality of it, my concern is not his theory, my concern is the lack of hard evidence. And I dont agree with the position of those who cannot provide this evidence and instead demand that alternative theories be provided (note that this demand for alternative theories to be provided is a common trick... it is notably used by those who claim that the resurrection is a historical event..... their modus operandi is to say that "oh if you say that Jesus was not risen from the dead you MUST explain how he came to be seen alive after his death")...

Note that a similar level of evidence exists for the resurrection.... It is mentionned in all Gospels and the Pauline letters... and even in Josephus

About this time there lived Jesus, a wise man, if indeed one ought to call him a man. For he was one who performed surprising deeds and was a teacher of such people as accept the truth gladly. He won over many Jews and many of the Greeks. He was the Christ. And when, upon the accusation of the principal men among us, Pilate had condemned him to a cross, those who had first come to love him did not cease. He appeared to them spending a third day restored to life, for the prophets of God had foretold these things and a thousand other marvels about him.

Those who argue for the resurrection (or other miracles) use similar arguments as those who argue for the existence of a "historical Jesus"....

I will assume this level of evidence is not sufficient to accept the resurrection as a historical fact....
Would you care for an objective opinion on the matter if it was different than yours? You're getting one right now. I'm not a religious or spiritual person. There is nothing about the miracles in the gospel that translate to reality for me.

With that being said, I look at the scholars and historians who are seasoned in interperting ancient writings and their validity and draw my conclusions against that. In the same sentence, they call the gospels of Christianity embeliishments and religious propaganda. Personally, again personally, I find that information to be telling in regards to objectivity and it goes in line with my mode of thinking. There is no reason as to why they would say he existed and then discredit his message as motivated to push religious sentiment.

Would it make a difference if he did exist in whether or not Christianity is based on factual accounts? I think it makes no difference at all.

There is a difference between being an Atheist and an Agnostic. Atheism seems terribly exhausting to me. You're not going to change someones opinion on their faith, so why bother?
 
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Maribat

Ad Honorem
Mar 2012
4,990
Well I just don't find it convincing. Why does the majority not accept these conspiracy theories, then? It's all a massive cover-up, a conspiracy lasting several centuries and involving millions of people? It's too convenient... what else are we to believe, that thousands of years ago, our ancestors have been visited by Ancient Aliens?
Mind you, you are talking about religious people and religious "biblical" scholars. They believe in miracle nativity by a virgin, dead walking by the city. Would those people listen to the arguments? Would "biblical' scholars risk their jobs?
 

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