left biblioblography: I BELIEVE IN JESUS! HALLELUJAH! PRAISE THE LORD AND PASS THE AMMUNITION....WAITAMINNIT: WHICH JESUS WE TALKIN' ABOUT HERE?

Sunday, May 07, 2006

I BELIEVE IN JESUS! HALLELUJAH! PRAISE THE LORD AND PASS THE AMMUNITION....WAITAMINNIT: WHICH JESUS WE TALKIN' ABOUT HERE?

Hee-HEE-hee (as Michael Jackson loves to emote): hope I made some of you jump for a second. I know, April Fool's is long gone. Sorry, couldn't resist.

I was at this site when I came across the 'Surfeit of Jesuses'.

It says:
"Josephus, the first century Jewish historian mentions no fewer than nineteen different Yeshuas/Jesii, about half of them contemporaries of the supposed Christ! In his Antiquities, of the twenty-eight high priests who held office from the reign of Herod the Great to the fall of the Temple, no fewer than four bore the name Jesus: Jesus ben Phiabi, Jesus ben Sec, Jesus ben Damneus and Jesus ben Gamaliel. Even Saint Paul makes reference to a rival magician, preaching 'another Jesus' (2 Corinthians 11,4). The surfeit of early Jesuses includes:

Jesus ben Sirach. This Jesus was reputedly the author of the Book of Sirach (aka 'Ecclesiasticus, or the Wisdom of Jesus the Son of Sirach'), part of Old Testament Apocrypha. Ben Sirach, writing in Greek about 180 BC, brought together Jewish 'wisdom' and Homeric-style heroes.

Jesus ben Pandira. A wonder-worker during the reign of Alexander Jannaeus (106-79 BC), one of the most ruthless of the Maccabean kings. Imprudently, this Jesus launched into a career of end-time prophesy and agitation which upset the king. He met his own premature end-time by being hung on a tree – and on the eve of a Passover. Scholars have speculated this Jesus founded the Essene sect.

Jesus ben Ananias. Beginning in 62AD, this Jesus had caused disquiet in Jerusalem with a non-stop doom-laden mantra of ‘Woe to the city’. He prophesied rather vaguely:

"A voice from the east, a voice from the west, a voice from the four winds, a voice against Jerusalem and the holy house, a voice against the bridegrooms and the brides, and a voice against the whole people."
(Josephus, Wars 6:3)

Arrested and flogged by the Romans, he was released as nothing more dangerous than a mad man. He died during the siege of Jerusalem from a rock hurled by a Roman catapult.

Jesus ben Saphat. In the insurrection of 68AD that wrought havoc in Galilee, this Jesus had led the rebels in Tiberias. When the city was about to fall to Vespasian’s legionaries he fled north to Tarichea on the Sea of Galilee.

Jesus ben Gamala. During 68/69 AD this Jesus was a leader of the ‘peace party’ in the civil war wrecking Judaea. From the walls of Jerusalem he had remonstrated with the besieging Idumeans (led by ‘James and John, sons of Susa’). It did him no good. When the Idumeans breached the walls he was put to death and his body thrown to the dogs and carrion birds.

Jesus ben Thebuth
. A priest who, in the final capitulation of the upper city in 69AD, saved his own skin by surrendering the treasures of the Temple, which included two holy candlesticks, goblets of pure gold, sacred curtains and robes of the high priests. The booty figured prominently in the Triumph held for Vespasian and his son Titus.


Too strange to be a coincidence!

According to the Biblical account, Pilate offered the Jews the release of just one prisoner and the cursed race chose Barabbas rather than gentle Jesus.

But hold on a minute: in the original text studied by Origen (and in some recent ones) the chosen criminal was Jesus Barabbas – and Bar Abba in Hebrew means ‘Son of the Father’!

Are we to believe that Pilate had a Jesus, Son of God and a Jesus, Son of the Father in his prison at the same time??!!

Perhaps the truth is that a single executed criminal helped flesh out the whole fantastic fable. Gospel writers, in scrambling details, used the Aramaic Barabbas knowing that few Latin or Greek speakers would know its meaning.

But was there a crucified Jesus?

Certainly. Jesus ben Stada was a Judean agitator who gave the Romans a headache in the early years of the second century. He met his end in the town of Lydda (twenty five miles from Jerusalem) at the hands of a Roman crucifixion crew. And given the scale that Roman retribution could reach – at the height of the siege of Jerusalem the Romans were crucifying upwards of five hundred captives a day before the city walls – dead heroes called Jesus would (quite literally) have been thick on the ground. Not one merits a full-stop in the great universal history. "

Thought I'd double-check my stats before I ran my mouth off for the Sunday Sermon, and sure enuff, came up with this:

The New Testament refers to five persons bearing the name Jesus:

* Jesus of Nazareth / Jesus the Nazarene, believed by Christians to be the Son of God and the King of the Jews, also known as Jesus Christ. See also New Testament view on Jesus' life and Historical Jesus.
* An ancestor of Jesus of Nazareth (Luke 3:29). The later Textus Receptus reads "Jose(s)."
* A Christian, evidently Jewish, and fellow worker of Paul. He was also called Justus.(Colossians 4:11).
* Jesus Barabbas
* Elymas, also known as Bar-Jesus, was a Jewish magician who appears in the New Testament in the Acts of the Apostles, chapter 13.

Additionally, the area around Judea raised many people who either claimed to be the Jewish Messiah, or were simply resistance fighters who wanted to overthrow Roman authority. Some of these include:

* Jesus ben Gamala. During AD 68/69 this Jesus was a leader of the 'peace activists' in the civil war wrecking Judaea, but was put to death by the victors.
* Jesus ben Saphat. Led Tiberian rebels in the Galilee insurrection of AD 68 and fled just before its end.
* Jesus ben Ananias. A prophecier who caused discontent in Jerusalem with laments of 'The End Times' around AD 62. He was considered a madman by the Roman authorities, and died in an attack on Jerusalem in 68/69AD when hit by a rock from a Roman catapult.

Earlier significant figures sometimes known as Jesus include:

* Jesus ben Sirach, the author of Ecclesiasticus
* Joshua, known as Jesus in the King James Version of the New Testament

Other individuals who have been referred to as "Jesus":

* Yeshu ben Pandera, translated "Jesus" by some, who was the teacher of Jacob of Sichnin in the 2nd century AD.
* ben Stada who was stoned at Lydda (Lod), assumed by some to be identical to Yeshu ben Pandera and thus referred to as "Jesus".
* Yeshu, translated "Jesus" by some, who lived at the start of the 1st century BC under the Hasmoneans.

As to Jesus Barabbas:

"The Gospels all state that there was a custom at Passover during which the Roman governor would release a prisoner of the crowd's choice. Mark 15:6; Matt. 27:15; John 18:39; Luke 23:17 (though this verse in Luke is not present in the earliest manuscripts and may be a later gloss to bring Luke into conformity)[3]

However, no other such release is recorded in any historical document, not even as a passing mention. Some point to the perception of Pontius Pilate's disregard for Jewish sensibilities; the idea of him honouring Jewish Passover in any way may not fit with historical accounts of his character. However, other historians take the exact opposite approach, arguing that Pilate showed careful regard to Jewish customs in order to avoid revolts in an unruly province, and this may be an example of Pilate creating an "ad hoc" tradition in order to avoid a possibly explosive situation.

If Pilate did not offer a choice between Jesus and another person, several possible explanations for the origin of such a story have been offered by a number of scholars."

Read the whole section, if you're interested.

So what am I saying here? Do I really need to spell it out? Okay, I will:
We have MULTIPLE mentions in the glorious historian that the xtians love to trot out as 'proof' for their spurious fables (Josephus, 'The Jewish Wars') of more than ONE person of that name. Yet the central figure in that role was given barely a nod (see here for a biting analysis of Eusebius' fornicatory interpolation).

(To be sung to the tune of 'It's looking a lot like Xmas') "It's looking a lot like...no Jee-buz, he didn't exist at all...."

More nails in the coffin of Christianity. Let's hope the ripples finally fade away.

And that, dear readers, is my nickel's worth. Spend it wisely, or flip a coin. Your choice.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

15 comments:

Beowulf said...

That is one hilarious post! Coincidentally, I posted yesterday on you Jesus myth conspiracy theorists.

Oh yah, I am supposed to have a teacher next semester and his name is Joe. He allegedly lives in this place called “Redlands, CA”. However, I looked in the phone book and there are about 300 different Joes. Therefore my teacher does not exist. YES! No physics ;-)

HairlessMonkeyDK said...

Nice, bf.
Keep grasping at those straws.
The more you do,
the more ridiculous you look.

udonman said...

yeah monkey its just like watching a monkey at the zoo try to figure out how to get his food during an behavior enrichment exercise

BF should be BS

hmm BS joe the knidergarten teacher in redlands sure he exists
hes more real then your jesus in jerusulem well ill bet theres a jesus in redlands BS

HairlessMonkeyDK said...

Nah...
BF = The Christian version of Tom Cruise.
(You know, they both believe in weird aliens and U.F.O.'s
and they're both breathtakingly
tiresome).

God = The biggest U.F.O. ever.

udonman said...

hairless its BS and yeah the comparisons between ufos and god are very similar indeed both have shown them selves to drunks that know one would belive in remote locations wait i get drunk why havent I seen god oh yeah he doesnt exist

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
That is one hilarious post!
Glad I could provide you w/some amusement. Seriously.
I might note, that I used the same argument most use when it comes to the mention of Theophilus in Luke:
"It was a common name at the time."
The 'Bar Abbas' synchronicity is singularly disturbing (or it should be, at least for you).
& it is human nature to get mixed up. Especially in an environment of 'strong oral tradition'.
However, I looked in the phone book and there are about 300 different Joes.
Ah, but the last name is also pivotal. You see, I've worked in databases before. If you have 100 Joe Smiths, then you have to index on some other data (i.e., address, apt #, zipcode, etc). If there's a multitude, confusion is VERY easy.
No physics ;-)
No Boolean logic. ;)
How many jesii lived in Nazareth (which is another little fable, since that didn't exist until the 4th CE)? Or even in Galilee? Howzabout Jerusalem? Maybe we should consult the famous census, no 1 can find?
If it ain't written down, it's hearsay. If it's written down, sure, we go w/the Aristotellian dictum of 'benefit of the doubt goes to the document, not the critic'.
But there's limits to that. Just because it's written down, is not indicative of the truth. The Illiad was written down: doesn't mean I have to believe in the Greek pantheon.

Rosemary said...

Reluctant:

I was looking forward to another new article. I wasn't disappointed. Very revealing information.

Krystalline Apostate said...

rosemary:
I was looking forward to another new article. I wasn't disappointed.
Well, thanks, & bless your little heart.
(Waitaminnit: can I still say the word 'bless'?) ;)
The next Sunday sermon will be a treat, I promise.

Beowulf said...

RA,

"Just because it's written down, is not indicative of the truth."

I agree; I just think the ‘Jesus Myth’ goes a little over board.

“Nazareth (which is another little fable, since that didn't exist until the 4th CE)?”

Oh please. That’s what I’m talking about.

Here, starting from this thread this thread

Richard Carrier, whom to my understanding is sympathetic to the ‘Jesus Myth”, has this to say about Nazareth.

[A]rchaeology has confirmed a stone building in Nazareth of the size and type to be a synagogue, and it dates from the time of Christ. See the entry in the Archaeological Encyclopedia of the Holy Land...

The evidence is insurmountable that there were numerous permanent structures--most of Nazareth's buildings even before the 1st century were partially carved from the rock of the hill, in a manner similar to Pella...

I was able to track down on my own the most extensive report, that of Bagatti (Excavations in Nazareth, vol. 1, 1969), and I looked through all the subsequent reports on Nazareth from Excavations and Surveys in Israel, and this is what I found:

(a) Very little of Nazareth has been excavated, and therefore no argument can be advanced regarding what "wasn't" there in the 1st century.

(b) Archaeological reports confirm that stones and bricks used in earlier buildings in Nazareth were reused in later structures, thus erasing a lot of the evidence. Therefore, it is faulty reasoning to argue that there were no brick or stone structures simply because we have not recovered them from the relevant strata (i.e. one of Hoffman's sources assumed that the absence of this evidence entailed mud-and-thatch housing, but that is fallacious reasoning--especially since no clear evidence of mud-and-thatch housing has been found, either).

(c) One example of the above includes four calcite column bases, which were reused in a later structure, but are themselves dated before the War by their stylistic similarity to synagogues and Roman structures throughout 1st century Judaea, and by the fact that they contain Nabataean lettering (which suggests construction before Jewish priests migrated to Nazareth after the war). This is not iron clad proof of a 1st century synagogue (since the pieces had been moved and thus could not be dated by strata), but it does demonstrate a very high probability--especially since calcite bases are cheap material compared to the more expensive marble of structures archaeologists confirmed started appearing there around a century later, i.e. by the end of the 1st century AD (or early 2nd century at the latest, since marble fragments have been found inscribed in Aramaic that is paleographically dated to this period), and more extensively again in the 3rd century (when a very impressive Jewish synagogue was built there, this time using marble, which was later converted to Christian use).

(d) I confirmed beyond any doubt that Nazareth was built on a hill--more specifically, down the slope of a hill, with a convenient "brow" roughly one city block away from the edge of the ancient town as so-far determined archaeologically. Because the town was built down the slope of a hill, we have found numerous examples of houses, tombs, and storage rooms half cut into the rock of the hill, leaving a diagonal slope for structures to be built up around them to complete the chambers (as I described above). Since these structural elements were so completely removed and apparently reused by later builders, no evidence remains of what they were composed of (whether mud, brick, or stone).

The bottom line : there is absolutely no doubt that Nazareth existed in the time of Jesus.


Anyway, back to my own world…..

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
I agree; I just think the ‘Jesus Myth’ goes a little over board.
Nice to see you're somewhat reasonable.
Oh please. That’s what I’m talking about.
Thanks for the link: interesting stuff. Did some quote mining:
From your link
"Archaeology of The New Testament, 1992), Reed etc indicate that there were no stone buildings in Nazareth in the first century.

Ted Hoffman

Also,
Mark's Jesus came from Capernaum, not Nazareth. The Alex texts have NazarhnoV in 10:47. Jgs 13:5 states that "he will be called a Nazirite", and it seems this is what Matthew relied on when stating that, per prophecy, Jesus will be called a Nazarene. "Nazirite" in Hebrew is NZYR. This could have been transliterated to Nazwr add a gentilic and you get NazwraioV as we find in Matthew 2:23. It appears that a Matthean redactor altered the original entry in Mark from NazarhnoV as we get in GMk 10:47

have been investigating the Nazareth problem for quite a while now and may come up with an idea soon enough. For starters, Origen believed that Nazareth was a mythical place. Origen wrote in Homily 33:1, that Nazareth was a mythical place representing Jews (Lienhard, Joseph T. Origen: Homilies on Luke, Fragments on Luke. FOTC: a New Translation, vol 94, p. 134. Washington D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 1996).


You may ask about Mk 1:9 which tells us that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, hlqen ihsous apo nazaret ths galilaias, to be baptized, but the version in Mt, ihsous apo ths galilaias, doesn't support Mk, especially when we have Nazara being the underlying form in Mt. We have to assume that nazaret is a late addition into Mk to bring it into line with the other gospels and this scribal act has caused people to read Mark's nazarhnos as related to this town, when it is not derived from it at all -- how can a gentilic nazarhnos come from nazaret? You should expect nazarethnos..
"
Also, few of mine:
http://home.inu.net/skeptic/ntforge.html:
"Nazareth - Did Nazareth of Galilee, said in Mark 1:6 to be Jesus’ hometown and the place where he grew up, actually exist at that time or is it just another figment of the writer's imagination? No such place appears on ancient Roman maps of the era. The territory of Zebulun, which included Galilee, is defined in Joshua 19:10-16. Although several towns, including Bethlehem, are cited, no mentioned is made of Nazareth. This is strange indeed considering that Nazareth was destined to play such an important roll in the predicted coming of the long-awaited Jewish messiah.. Flavius Josephus, an important first century Jewish historian, gives the names of 45 towns in Galilee in the first century, yet Nazareth is not among them. The Jewish Talmud gives the names of 63 first century Galilean towns and again no Nazareth is listed. Scanning across 1500 years of Jewish and Roman texts and other sources we see no mention of a Nazareth. In fact, the first reference to such a place appears in Mark 1:9 where we are told that, "In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John (the Baptist) in the Jordan river". Mark, the oldest of the New Testament gospels, is recognized by many Bible scholars as pure fiction. So, is Nazareth just another factitious element of the Christian myth with no basis in fact?

Some Christian apologists have tried to claim Nazareth existed citing archaeological digs at one place or another on or near the alleged site, but they fail to understand that going back some 5000 years practically every spot of that land had a settlement on it at one time or another. Another apologetic claim is that Nazareth was too small to be listed. This defies logic in view of the fact that of the 63 towns and settlements listed for that relatively small area by three different accounts they all missed it.

Nazareth did not exist as a part of the Christian story until in the fourth century when the dowager empress, Helena, the mother of Constantine the Great, journeyed through the Holy Land establishing the various holy Christian sites now visited by millions of awestruck tourists. According to the story, Helena was so dismayed not to find Nazareth that she selected a pile of ruins in the general area and decreed it to be the missing town. In evaluating Helena’s whimsical contributions to Christianity’s holy geography we must consider some of her other remarkable discoveries as well. For example, she dug a hole in the ground, and lo and behold, there she recovered the original three crosses, the ones actually used in the alleged crucifixion of Jesus and the two other law breakers. The one identified as the cross of Jesus was eventually brought back to Rome where it was carried into battle. The presence of this holy icon would, it was firmly believed, render the Roman army invincible. But unfortunately they forgot to tell the enemy because the Roman army was over ran and defeated, and the cross was taken and burned. So, no credibility can be placed in Helena's "discoveries".
"

Note that Eusebius, interpolator of Josephus, was her counselor.

http://www.jesusneverexisted.com/nazareth.html
Has a very notable quote, straight from the horse's mouth:
"And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.'
(Matthew 2.23)"
Since there's no such prophecy, oopsy doodle! The closest reference is in Judges, about Samson, who was a Nazarite.
Also:
" • Nazareth is not mentioned even once in the entire Old Testament. The Book of Joshua (19.10,16) – in what it claims is the process of settlement by the tribe of Zebulon in the area – records twelve towns and six villages and yet omits any 'Nazareth' from its list.
• The Talmud, although it names 63 Galilean towns, knows nothing of Nazareth, nor does early rabbinic literature.
• St Paul knows nothing of 'Nazareth'. Rabbi Solly's epistles (real and fake) mention Jesus 221 times, Nazareth not at all.
• No ancient historian or geographer mentions Nazareth. It is first noted at the beginning of the 4th century.
"
Anyway, back to my own world…..
& back to mine...

Krystalline Apostate said...

HMDK:
and they're both breathtakingly
tiresome).

-Deep chuckle-
Hey, I don't mind.
I invite the opposing viewpoints here. Keeps the crowd diverse, & me on my toes.
I am concerned however:
Why is it I get no hate mail? Isn't that indicative of popularity?
Maybe it's cause I'm so friendly? Or laconic?
Ah well, not really a complaint per se, but an observation.

TheJollyNihilist said...

Very interesting post, ra!

I always find the issue of a historical Jesus very compelling. My biggest objection to the notion of a historical Jesus is the fact that none of his contemporary, secular historians seemed to know of him.

I'm quoting the book Atheist Universe now: "There is not a single reference to a 'Jesus' or to 'Jesus Christ' written by any secular source who lived during the years in which Christ supposedly walked the Earth."

If some guy was walking around raising the dead and curing the blind, one would think a secular historian or two might have seen fit to mention his existence. After all, as the text continues, "These years represent one of the most thoroughly documented periods of antiquity."

Beowulf said...

RA,

That is an excellent thread is it not? I like to scope the threads on Infidels because they generally are more sophisticated compared to some of the backyard scuffles out there. You should read through the entire thing when you get a chance (it may take awhile because there are many pages).

Just a couple things: Hoffman is an uber skeptic. Carrier jumped in because he kept overstating his case and exaggerating.

Carrier said:

Ted, I don't usually devote my time to forum debates, but this is worthwhile, IMO, since there is too much flawed method here to let stand.

Not that I am accusing that everything Ted says is completely bunk—just be cautious.

A couple corrections:

Mark's Jesus came from Capernaum, not Nazareth.

Ted goofed See Mark 1:9.

Per Carrier:

“There is no valid reason to believe Mark did not write Mk. 1:9.”

“So you can't get anywhere with this line of reasoning--least of all to convict Mark 1:9 as an interpolation.”

***
You quoted:

"Archaeology of The New Testament, 1992), Reed etc indicate that there were no stone buildings in Nazareth in the first century”.

Carrier responded:

“He merely asserts this. He cites no actual archaeological reports. So I checked those archaeological reports myself (I'll say more about that below) and they do not quite agree with his assertions.”

****
You quote Ted:

“Mark's Jesus came from Capernaum, not Nazareth. The Alex texts have NazarhnoV in 10:47. Jgs 13:5 states that "he will be called a Nazirite", and it seems this is what Matthew relied on when stating that, per prophecy, Jesus will be called a Nazarene. "Nazirite" in Hebrew is NZYR. This could have been transliterated to Nazwr add a gentilic and you get NazwraioV as we find in Matthew 2:23. It appears that a Matthean redactor altered the original entry in Mark from NazarhnoV as we get in GMk 10:47”

Carrier later replies:

“Here you guys play a shell game, trying to use Matthew to convict Mark, and using a completely different word form at that--one never used by Mark. That doesn't work--especially since Matthew alone claims to have found a prophecy that explains the detail, a point curiously absent from Mark (who simply states this as a casual fact). Thus, Matthew's form of the word derives from whatever (now lost) prophecy he claimed to have found. Yes, I agree, Nazwraios is very unlikely to be an adjective of Nazara or Nazaret, but note that Matthew doesn't exactly claim it is: he claims the prophecy said Nazwraios and then he "interprets" this to indicate birth at Nazareth. That's not a trivial point: because it is exactly what Mark doesn't do. So you can't use Matthew's word game to argue that Mark didn't say what he did.”

***
You quote Ted:

“I have been investigating the Nazareth problem for quite a while now and may come up with an idea soon enough. For starters, Origen believed that Nazareth was a mythical place. Origen wrote in Homily 33:1, that Nazareth was a mythical place representing Jews (Lienhard, Joseph T. Origen: Homilies on Luke, Fragments on Luke. FOTC: a New Translation, vol 94, p. 134. Washington D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 1996).”

Carrier Replies:

“(1) I checked Origen, Homilies 33.1, and he says only what the cities Capernaum and Nazareth symbolized (domains of Gentiles and Jews, respectively), not why those towns were chosen over others to represent these things. Therefore, this offers no help at all in figuring out why Nazareth was chosen to be the home town of Jesus. Any rural town would have done to fulfill Origen's symbolic interpretation. Therefore, the most plausible reason remaining is: it was his home town. That does not mean that it probably was his home town (that depends on the weight carried by Doherty's overall thesis against any coherent alternative theory of historicity).”

***
Carrier expands with the following:

“The bottom line: there is absolutely no doubt that Nazareth existed in the time of Jesus. Also, there is nothing I have seen in Luke or Mark that is contradicted by the physical evidence available (i.e. even if we reject the evidence there is, we still have no evidence against what they say was there, while if we accept the evidence there is, what they say was there appears to have indeed been there).

Perhaps one might still dispute whether this town was called "Nazareth" in the time of Jesus, but it is extremely improbable that Christians could have successfully renamed it in time for the Jews to accept it as the town's name in a 3rd century inscription identifying Nazareth as a town receiving priests in the late 1st century. Jews would not let heretics rename a Jewish town after a blasphemous mythic hero's birth place, nor would they accept such a name change even if the Christians persisted. Thus, the fact that Jews had no problem with the name in the 3rd century, in reference to an event that took place there in the late 1st century, argues against the town being called anything other than Nazareth in the early 1st century.”

***
You quoted:

Flavius Josephus, an important first century Jewish historian, gives the names of 45 towns in Galilee in the first century, yet Nazareth is not among them.

Per Carrier:

“Finally, I really don't understand this nonsense about Josephus not mentioning the town. He says there were 240 cities in Galilee. He does not even come close to naming them all.”

***

You quoted:

“The Jewish Talmud gives the names of 63 first century Galilean towns and again no Nazareth is listed. Scanning across 1500 years of Jewish and Roman texts and other sources we see no mention of a Nazareth.”

Per Carrier:

“Out of 240 towns, the Talmud names only 63. So why do you expect Nazareth to be included in those 63 but not the other 177 towns? As I said, this kind of argument is nonsense.”

***

You quote:

“Nazareth did not exist as a part of the Christian story until in the fourth century when the dowager empress, Helena, the mother of Constantine the Great, journeyed through the Holy Land establishing the various holy Christian sites now visited by millions of awestruck tourists. According to the story, Helena was so dismayed not to find Nazareth that she selected a pile of ruins in the general area and decreed it to be the missing town. In evaluating Helena’s whimsical contributions to Christianity’s holy geography we must consider some of her other remarkable discoveries as well. For example, she dug a hole in the ground, and lo and behold, there she recovered the original three crosses, the ones actually used in the alleged crucifixion of Jesus and the two other law breakers. The one identified as the cross of Jesus was eventually brought back to Rome where it was carried into battle. The presence of this holy icon would, it was firmly believed, render the Roman army invincible. But unfortunately they forgot to tell the enemy because the Roman army was over ran and defeated, and the cross was taken and burned. So, no credibility can be placed in Helena's "discoveries"."

Per Carrier: (some key points)

“As they are silent about most of the towns in Galilee. You seem not to understand that an Argument from Silence requires the expectation of a mention.”

“We have no such expectation. Therefore, no Argument from Silence can proceed.”

“And since Jews apparently were calling the town Nazareth as early as the 70's (as attested in a 3rd century inscription about a late 1st century event), it is not true that "all writings outside the gospels are silent about Nazareth accross centuries" (of course, that statement is literally false, since Nazareth is often mentioned by Christians in the 2nd and 3rd century--so I assume you mean by "outside the gospels" instead "outside plausible influence from the gospels").”

I scoped your other link (been there before). I think most of that has already been addressed. But I do see you used the fact that Rabbi Solly does not mention Nazareth as an argument. However, you dismiss his mention of Jesus as valid. So, even if he did mention Nazareth you would just write it off as “fake.”

Shalom

Krystalline Apostate said...

FTM:
Hey, thanks.
If some guy was walking around raising the dead and curing the blind, one would think a secular historian or two might have seen fit to mention his existence.
Especially Philo of Judaeus, contemporary of that period, who lived in Jerusalem, a Hellenized Jew.

Or the alleged droves of people said to be following him so much they trampled 1 another (Luke). That would a least warrant a blurb, if naught else.

Or the darkness that covered the earth (they keep dragging in Thallus, but that's a primary source quoting secondary source quoting a tertiary source that doesn't exist any more! Hey, try using that 1 in court). Or a list of the '500' witnesses (Paul).
I mean, holy crap! Those are just from memory. I ain't even breaking out my notes.
Why do you think they call it 'apologia?'
Hehehehe.
Hey, I'm an undegreed layman, even I can see the holes in the story.
If they'd stuck to just 1 'gospel', they'd have been better off.

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
Ted goofed See Mark 1:9.
Whoops. I goofed on that. Thanks.

“There is no valid reason to believe Mark did not write Mk. 1:9.”

“So you can't get anywhere with this line of reasoning--least of all to convict Mark 1:9 as an interpolation.”

I actually was quoting the part about the transliteration/mistranslation.

“He merely asserts this. He cites no actual archaeological reports. So I checked those archaeological reports myself (I'll say more about that below) and they do not quite agree with his assertions.”
Okay. But most scholarship I know of says that Nazareth was a Japhan necropolis, ergo, the statement, "What good will come out of Nazareth."
“Mark's Jesus came from Capernaum, not Nazareth. The Alex texts have NazarhnoV in 10:47. Jgs 13:5 states that "he will be called a Nazirite", and it seems this is what Matthew relied on when stating that, per prophecy, Jesus will be called a Nazarene. "Nazirite" in Hebrew is NZYR. This could have been transliterated to Nazwr add a gentilic and you get NazwraioV as we find in Matthew 2:23. It appears that a Matthean redactor altered the original entry in Mark from NazarhnoV as we get in GMk 10:47”

Well, I'll look at that later.

“Here you guys play a shell game, trying to use Matthew to convict Mark, and using a completely different word form at that--one never used by Mark. That doesn't work--especially since Matthew alone claims to have found a prophecy that explains the detail, a point curiously absent from Mark (who simply states this as a casual fact). Thus, Matthew's form of the word derives from whatever (now lost) prophecy he claimed to have found. Yes, I agree, Nazwraios is very unlikely to be an adjective of Nazara or Nazaret, but note that Matthew doesn't exactly claim it is: he claims the prophecy said Nazwraios and then he "interprets" this to indicate birth at Nazareth. That's not a trivial point: because it is exactly what Mark doesn't do. So you can't use Matthew's word game to argue that Mark didn't say what he did.”
What lost prophecy is that? That's the section that stands out the most. Is that 1 of those 'apocryphal' books the Nicene left out?

“(1) I checked Origen, Homilies 33.1, and he says only what the cities Capernaum and Nazareth symbolized (domains of Gentiles and Jews, respectively), not why those towns were chosen over others to represent these things. Therefore, this offers no help at all in figuring out why Nazareth was chosen to be the home town of Jesus. Any rural town would have done to fulfill Origen's symbolic interpretation. Therefore, the most plausible reason remaining is: it was his home town. That does not mean that it probably was his home town (that depends on the weight carried by Doherty's overall thesis against any coherent alternative theory of historicity).”
Well, I'm going to have to read the bloody thing now. Gee, thanks. Got link?

Perhaps one might still dispute whether this town was called "Nazareth" in the time of Jesus, but it is extremely improbable that Christians could have successfully renamed it in time for the Jews to accept it as the town's name in a 3rd century inscription identifying Nazareth as a town receiving priests in the late 1st century. Jews would not let heretics rename a Jewish town after a blasphemous mythic hero's birth place, nor would they accept such a name change even if the Christians persisted. Thus, the fact that Jews had no problem with the name in the 3rd century, in reference to an event that took place there in the late 1st century, argues against the town being called anything other than Nazareth in the early 1st century.”
I dunno. That sounds kinda weak to me. The Empress Dowager came along, & did her thing. Who's going to argue? Besides which, the movement had picked up considerable steam by then. La tourista!

“Finally, I really don't understand this nonsense about Josephus not mentioning the town. He says there were 240 cities in Galilee. He does not even come close to naming them all.”
Which is about a weak an argument as it gets: Josephus lived in Japha for some time, and get this: IT WAS A MILE OR SO AWAY.

“Out of 240 towns, the Talmud names only 63. So why do you expect Nazareth to be included in those 63 but not the other 177 towns? As I said, this kind of argument is nonsense.”
I say crapola. If anything, the Israelites exhibited a penchant for keeping scrupulous records. Remember the masoretic sect? Besides, you've got NO RECORDS pre-1st CE.

“As they are silent about most of the towns in Galilee. You seem not to understand that an Argument from Silence requires the expectation of a mention.”
“We have no such expectation. Therefore, no Argument from Silence can proceed.”

That sounds suspiciously like sophistry to me.

“And since Jews apparently were calling the town Nazareth as early as the 70's (as attested in a 3rd century inscription about a late 1st century event), it is not true that "all writings outside the gospels are silent about Nazareth accross centuries" (of course, that statement is literally false, since Nazareth is often mentioned by Christians in the 2nd and 3rd century--so I assume you mean by "outside the gospels" instead "outside plausible influence from the gospels").”
& what 3rd CE inscription might that be? I want mention of the damn thing PRE-1ST CE. Something besides a few unearthed trinkets. I'm certainly not going to take testimony post ex facto.

I scoped your other link (been there before). I think most of that has already been addressed. But I do see you used the fact that Rabbi Solly does not mention Nazareth as an argument. However, you dismiss his mention of Jesus as valid. So, even if he did mention Nazareth you would just write it off as “fake.”

Shalom


Oh, now come on. Saul's lack of mention of MANY of the details is an outstanding argument from silence. It's doubly damning that Luke, as his companion, didn't see fit to tell Rabbi Solly any of these 'historical' details'.
Thus far, I appreciate your efforts, but am unconvinced.

L'chaim.