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    by Published on 08-12-2015 03:55 PM     Number of Views: 287 
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    2. Bart Erhman

    There are no contemporary sources for Jesus outside of the gospels. How necessary is it for history to be written during their lifetime? If history is written after Jesus' life does that mean we have to reject it as untrustworthy? Was the NT written intentionally to make it appear as though Jesus rose for the dead? Does a person's biography have to be written while they are alive?

    Not even in the modern world let alone in the first century. In the first century, just prior or after, most of the major works were not written contemporary of a person. Earliest sources for Alexander were written 350 years after his death. The two best known sources for Alexander (Plutarch and Arian) are +425 to +450. John Dominic Crossan and Bart Ehrman when they are responding to whether we know if Jesus is a historical figure, both of them say Josephus and Tacitus are probably our very best non-Christian sources. Bart Ehrman lists a dozen independent sources for the crucifixion of Jesus. 4 of them are non-New Testament, two of them are historians. Josephus is approximately 60 years after Jesus died. And Tacitus is as much as 80 years after the cross. Two critical sources consider these fine sources. Crossan says these two sources alone would cause me to think Jesus really lived and those holding the Jesus myth are wrong. They don't have an issue with 60 or 80 years after Jesus.

    Does it pose a problem if the 4 gospels were not written by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John?

    Not in the slightest. Whomever they were written by and the input given to them by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John is not important. What is important is they are our earliest sources within a decade after Jesus died on the cross. Historians highly value earliest sources. Even if you place these sources in the second half of the first century, they still make up sources that are closer to their events than for any writings in antiquity, thus, holding to the highest of standards.

    Early creedal texts such as in 1 Cor. 15 that take us back to what Christians reported in the early 30s AD makes so much sense compared to what Tacitus may have said.
    by Published on 01-06-2010 01:37 PM     Number of Views: 5235 
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    2. Simon Greenleaf

    Royal Professor of Law at Harvard, Simon Greenleaf, was considered to be the greatest expert of evidence the world had ever known. The Supreme Justice of the Supreme Court said that Greenleaf's testimony is the most basic and compelling testimony that can be accepted in any English speaking court in the world. When Greenleaf spoke, that settled the matter. He was far and away the most knowledgeable person on evidence the world had ever known. The London Times said that more light on jurisprudence had come from Greenleaf than all the jurists of Europe combined.

    Greenleaf had one inviolable principle in his classrooms at Harvard, and that was, you never make up your mind about any significant matter without first considering the evidence. Greenleaf was not a Christian. When challenged by one of his students with this principle, he admitted that he had not considered the evidence. When he did, he became a Christian: believed in the deity, death and resurrection of Jesus.

    After examining every thread of information he could find he said in his book, The Testimony of the Evangelists: The Gospels Examined for the Rules of Evidence, that if any unbiased jury in the world considered the evidence for the resurrection of Christ, they would have to conclude that Jesus of Nazareth actually rose from the dead.

    And so he became a believer that Jesus was God and was converted. He wrote, "In requiring this candor and simplicity of mind, and those who would investigate the truth of our religion..." He sees that Christianity is, in fact, the only evidential historical religion in the world, and the whole thing rests upon evidence which he finds so compelling and so overwhelming that any honest person with an open mind examining the evidence would be like himself inescapably drawn to accept it. And so he sets forth his first rule of legal evidence and for any other ancient document.

    "Every document apparently ancient coming from the proper repository or custody and bearing on its face no evident marks of forgery, the law presumes to be genuine and devolves on the opposing party the burden of proving it to be otherwise."

    "This ancient document, the Scripture, has come from the proper repository, that is, it is has been in the hands of the persons of the Church for 2000 years almost and it bears on its face no evident marks of forgery, and therefore the law presumes it to be genuine, and those who would presume otherwise upon them devolves the responsibility of proving it to be false. We don't have to prove it to be true. They have to prove it to be false. That's what the law says."

    (Simon Greenleaf, The Testimony of the Evangelists: The Gospels Examined for the Rules of Evidence)

    "It was IMPOSSIBLE that the apostles could have persisted in affirming the truths they had narrated, had not JESUS CHRIST ACTUALLY RISEN FROM THE DEAD, . . ."

    (Simon Greenleaf, An Examination of the Testimony of the Four Evangelists by the Rules of Evidence Administered in the Courts of Justice, p.29.)



    by Published on 12-15-2009 01:56 AM     Number of Views: 1844 
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    2. War Related Issues

    5 million died in religious wars involving Christians throughout all history, but over 100 million died in secular wars by a particular human philosophy, e.g. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels using dialectical materialism or communism killed over 100 million in 50 years, in just 50 years. Niche so influenced Hitler and calvinistically, 6 million Jews were killed, and Stalin killed 10 million Christians.

    What charities or universities have atheists brought into the world? None! They are parasites on the carcass of Christianity. They live off us, they survive because of us, they give nothing to the world, and they take anything they can get their hands on. 78% of hospitals in USA were built by Christians. What has atheism and agnosticism done for mankind lately? Nothing. Atheist philosophers contribute nothing to life.