This will come as a shock to most Christians but the Rabbi is absolutely right..

Rabbi Tovia Singer Exposes the Greatest Story that Never Happened: The Woman Caught in Adultery.

In this intriguing broadcast (published 28th July 2016), Rabbi Tovia Singer explains that while the story found in John’s Gospel of the woman taken in adultery is one of the most popular and widely cited gospel stories today, this was not always so..

 



Categories: Bible, Christianity, Judaism

46 replies

  1. Again, I’m not trying to be insensitive to my fellow Christians, but I would argue that there is a ton of myth making in all of the Gospel accounts.

    The infancy accounts of both Luke/Matthew for example, or the divergent resurrection accounts are other examples that stand out to me.

    How, Matthew and Luke obviously redacted the words of Mark according to their own theological needs,as well as complete omissions of material that was either embarrassing or for the sake of assuaging the tension that conflicted between said authors.

    Some of the Messianic prophecies from the Gospels seem so contrived and foreign to the original meaning of the contex of scripture they were culled from.

    If anybody has any suggestions or books they would recommend to help shed light Christian/Jew/Muslim, please help a brother out.

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  2. This story refutes Christianity.

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  3. Hello Jason:

    From what I know the gospel authors used a Jewish technique called Midrash,which is used in the Talmud.

    It is looking for repetitions,analogies.The belief is that those details were left by God to tell them something.

    Notice the 1 Corinthian 15:3-7 creed says there was a prophecy,that in 3 days the Messiah would be resurrected.

    “For I delivered unto you first of all that which also I received:

    that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures

    (here it is about Isaiah 53)

    and that he was buried; and that he hath been raised on the third day

    according to the scriptures;(this is Midrash)

    That numbers 3 and 7 and 40 are repeated many times in the OT.

    Several times when the number 3 is repeated it has the themes of death and life after 3 days. From memory there is:

    Abraham and Isaac,God said to kill him,3 days,

    and Jonah in the fish,death,3 days,

    and Ester and the genocide of the Jews in the Persian empire,and 3 days.

    For all who are interested,in these 2 video clips(7 min and 15 min) from the Christian film “The Harvest”,you will see how Midrash is used to calculate when approximately the Second coming of Jesus might be,

    using numbers 3 and 7,and 1 day is 1,000 years for God, and the OT.

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  4. I forgot to add that in Revelation it is written Jesus would rule the world for 1,000 years,after his second coming.

    It is to better understand the content of the 2 videos.

    In Luke there is a reference to the Midrash technique,where after the resurrection Jesus tells his disciples that there was a prophecy that he would resurrect on the 3rd day.

    Luke 24:44-47

    “Then he said to them,

    “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.”

    Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer

    and on the third day rise from the dead,

    and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”

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    • Thanks Richard, I’m trying to keep an open mind. For example, didn’t the early Ebionites reject many mainstream Christian doctrines? Jesus divinity for example as well as his atoning death, his pre existence and his miraculous birth? They also kept the Law ect.

      If Jesus teachings really abrogated the Law, then why does history attest to groups like the Ebionites? I mean if Jesus really “declared all foods clean” per Mark, shouldn’t that of sealed the deal?

      Isn’t it a tad i treating how the church fathers sought and did destroy from groups like the Nazoreans and Ebionites? Why did they do that? What were they afraid of?

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  5. *Isn’t it interesting how the Church Fathers sought to destroy the writings from groups like the Ebionites ect.

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  6. Greetings Jason:

    Yes,the Ebionites are an interesting group,I know they said Paul was a false prophet.

    They regarded Jesus as the Messiah while rejecting his divinity and insisted on keeping Mosaic Law.

    They rejected the virgin birth,and I have read that some accepted Jesus’ resurrection,others not(that confuses me)

    A.One mystery about Paul is WHY did he persecute the Christians?

    Some say because they said Jesus was divine,I see it as possible.

    Bart-Ehrman says because they accepted a crucified Messiah as the Messiah.I think Paul would have found that disgusting,but enough to try to kill Christians?

    B.For me,the tradition that Jesus created a New Alliance,that replaced Mosaic Law,is THE reason why Paul hated the Christians.

    There are 2 possibilities:

    Either the historic Jesus actually said he was creating a New Alliance at the Last Supper,or

    His disciples invented it,a lie,after Jesus’ death.

    I see it as highly improbable the disciples would have had the imagination or daring to create such a tradition out of thin air.

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  7. There is also church tradition,oral tradition was very important in a society like the Roman empire,where 90% of the 60 million inhabitants were illiterate.

    In one of the authentic letters by Paul,Philippians,he mentions a co-worker called Clement:

    Philippians 4:2-3

    “I implore Euodia and I implore Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel,

    with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.”

    We are not sure how old this Clement was(15 or 20 or 30),and maybe,maybe he was the Clement who became Pope in Rome.

    The Christian writer Origen(185-254) identifies Pope Clement with St. Paul’s fellow-laborer so do Eusebius(260-340),the Father of Church History, Epiphanius(310-403), and Jerome(347-420).

    Source:

    http://www.cogwriter.com/clement.htm

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  8. There is a letter attributed to Pope Clement,but it doesn’t mention his name,and whether it is by him or not is not that important. It is by a Christian intellectual,the letter is from about the year 96 AD,it is 1st Clement.And it is written by an important person in ROME to the Christians in CORINTH.

    It begins:

    “The Church of God which sojourneth in Rome

    to the Church of God which
    sojourneth in Corinth,

    to them which are called and sanctified by the
    will of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Grace to you and peace
    from Almighty God through Jesus Christ be multiplied.”

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  9. The Corinth church was created by Paul,and we know:

    Paul considered Jesus to have been divine,in Philippians 2:6-11( where Paul repeats a creed of the congregation)

    “Who, though he(Jesus) was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,

    but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.

    And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

    Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

    Paul accepted the New Alliance/Covenant(1 Corinthians 11:25)

    In 1st Clement(written in Rome,sent to Corinth),and Peter had ended up in Rome,like Paul,and so the church in Rome was as much the church of Peter as of Paul,it says they both died as martyrs:

    1st Clement 5:2-6

    http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/1clement-lightfoot.html

    “By reason of jealousy and envy the greatest and most righteous
    pillars of the Church were persecuted
    ,

    and contended even unto death.

    Let us set before our eyes the good Apostles.

    There was Peter who by reason of unrighteous jealousy endured not one
    not one but many labors, and thus having borne his testimony went to
    his appointed place of glory.

    By reason of jealousy and strife Paul by his example pointed out the
    prize of patient endurance. After that he had been seven times in
    bonds, had been driven into exile, had been stoned, had preached in
    the East and in the West, he won the noble renown which was the
    reward of his faith,

    having taught righteousness unto the whole world and having reached
    the farthest bounds of the West; and when he had borne his testimony
    before the rulers, so he departed from the world and went unto the
    holy place, having been found a notable pattern of patient endurance.”

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  10. The point is:

    If Peter,the chief of the apostles,who preached in Rome,had believed contrary to Paul,

    had believed that Jesus was NOT divine(like the Ebionites) and that Mosaic Law was still valid(no New Covenat)(like the Ebionites),

    then the writer of 1st Clement,would NOT have praised them both as if they were 100% in agreement.

    In the same letter,1st Clement ,the writer says the original disciples of Jesus preached his resurrection,and Paul was included as among ” greatest and most righteous pillars of the Church.”

    It has again the separation of Jesus and God as 2 separate beings,but it is understood that here it would be God the Father.

    1st Clement 42:1-4

    “The Apostles received the Gospel for us from the Lord Jesus
    Christ; Jesus Christ was sent forth from God.

    So then Christ is from God, and the Apostles are from Christ. Both
    therefore came of the will of God in the appointed order.

    Having therefore received a charge, and having been fully assured
    through the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ
    and confirmed in
    the word of God with full assurance of the Holy Ghost,

    they went forth with the glad tidings that the kingdom of God should come.

    So preaching everywhere in country and town, they appointed their
    firstfruits, when they had proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops
    and deacons unto them that should believe.”

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  11. I forgot to add that yes,1st Clement is from 96 AD,but Peter and Paul were killed in 64 AD,in Rome,by emperor Nero.

    That is 32 years difference,or just 1 generation,not 2,3,4 generations.The basic ideas preached by Peter in Rome would not have been lost in 1 generation.

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  12. In 2001 an atheist Italian scientist(Guido Barbujani) came to the conclusion that based on the evidence,there is a good probability we have St Luke’s bones,it is a REAL DETECTIVE STORY.

    You see,there is a document from the 2nd century,called the “Anti-Marcionite Prologue”,just before continuing with the Gospel of Luke,that says:

    “There is Luke, a native of Antioch in Syria, a medical doctor by profession, a disciple of the Apostles. Afterwards he was a companion of Paul until Paul’s martyrdom.

    He served the Lord with full dedication. He died at eighty-four years of age without wife or children, in Boeotia, full of the Holy Spirit.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/italy/1360095/DNA-test-pinpoints-St-Luke-the-apostles-remains-to-Padua.html

    “PROF Guido Barbujani is not a man who displays extremes of emotion. A population geneticist with a reputation as a hard-headed intellectual, he made no impassioned telephone calls when he reached his scientific breakthrough at the end of 2000.

    Nine months later, when he received a third letter of rejection from a scientific publication, refusing to publicise his discovery because it feared little public interest, he did not lose heart.

    Last week, however, he did admit to one moment of jubilation: his astonishing conclusion that the remains contained in an ornate lead coffin in the Basilica of Santa Giustina, in Padua, Italy, were very likely those of the apostle St Luke, made headline news around the world.

    “I did have a moment of quiet satisfaction,” Prof Barbujani, 46, a life-long atheist who works at the university of Ferrara in Italy, said yesterday in an interview with The Telegraph.

    A master of the convoluted understatement, he added: “I think we should accept that there is no way to tell, definitively, that this is the body of Luke, but the genetic evidence does not contradict the idea.”

    For this read that the scientific world is now 99.9 per cent convinced that the remains, venerated for centuries, are those of the evangelist St Luke, the author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles.

    Prof Barbujani’s discovery has enormous significance for theologians and historians: indeed the Roman Catholic authorities were astonished to discover that the relic was probably genuine……………………………The story of Prof Barbujani’s discovery is a fascinating, modern-day detective story that has solved an ancient conundrum.

    Proof of St Luke’s authenticity only came about when the Greek Orthodox Church demanded his body back, insisting that although it was probably brought to Padua during the Crusades, the saint died in Thebes, Greece. The coffin had been in Padua since 1172, when it was placed in a marble sarcophagus and kept in the town’s church.

    It was last opened in 1562 but remained largely forgotten until 1992, when Antonio Mattiazzo, the bishop of Padua, received the request for its return.

    He called together a team of experts – among them Prof Barbujani – to work on carbon dating the bones and attempting to verify their authenticity.

    In 1988 the 400-year-old seals were cut from the lead coffin and, inside, they found a skeleton without a skull. The skeleton was that of a man of between 70 and 85, about 5ft 4in tall, of a stocky build. He had suffered from osteoporosis and arthritis of the spine.

    When it was discovered that the remains fitted, anatomically, with a skull in Prague which was said to be that of St Luke, the first inklings of hope that the bones were authentic were aroused.

    “Two teeth had been found in the coffin and around them some coins – the oldest dating from 229 – which showed that the body was venerated as a relic,” said Prof Barbujani.

    “Radiocarbon dating of one of the teeth indicated that it belonged to someone who died between AD72 and 416BC.

    We knew that the evangelist, according to ancient sources, was born in Antioch, worked as a doctor and died at 84 in Thebes.

    The coffin with his remains was taken to Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire, around 338 and was later moved to Padua.”

    Prof Barbujani believes that the coffin was probably taken out of Constantinople for safe keeping, either during the reign of the Emperor Julian, who tried to restore paganism, or during the iconoclast period of the eighth century, when many religious images and objects were destroyed.

    “We were now seriously excited,” he said. “The spread in the radiocarbon dating indicated at least two possibilities. One was that the body was that of a man who had died at the same time, the other that, for some reason, a new body was put in the coffin in Constantinople around 300.”

    To distinguish between the two, Prof Barbujani analysed fragments of DNA from the tooth and sought to compare them with likely living representatives of the ancient populations of Antioch and Constantinople: an Antioch match would suggest the body was Luke’s, a Greek match, that the body had been replaced.

    Since the present population of Antioch includes many Kurds, Prof Barbujani sampled the DNA of Syrians from Aleppo. In place of the inhabitants of ancient Constantinople, now Istanbul, he tested Greeks from Attica and Crete.
    The DNA from the tooth turned out to resemble Syrian DNA more than Greek. Prof Barbujani had found his final link. He remains, however, a cautious man. “Our data tells us the body is absolutely compatible with a Syrian origin,” he said. “I cannot say definitively it is Luke.”

    His findings, however, have impressed the scientific world. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in America found it fascinating. When it published it last week, it sent shock-waves through the religious world.”

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  13. Rats,I had forgot about the most famous case of Midrash in the gospel,it is:

    Matthew 2:23

    “And came and lived in a city called Nazareth.

    This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophets: “He shall be called a Nazarene.”

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  14. Nazareth is believed to have as its root the word Netzer(branch).

    Netzer/branch is a title of the Messiah in the OT:

    Jesse was the father of David:

    1 Samuel 17:12

    “Now David was the son of an Ephrathite named Jesse, who was from Bethlehem in Judah. Jesse had eight sons, and in Saul’s time he was very old.”

    A.Isaiah 11:1-5(it is about the Messiah)

    “Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse,

    And a branch from his roots will bear fruit.

    The Spirit of the LORD will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding, The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. And He will delight in the fear of the LORD”

    B.Jeremiah 23:5

    “Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch;

    And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in the land.”

    C.Jeremiah 33:15-16

    “In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth.

    ‘In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will dwell in safety; and this is the name by which she will be called: the LORD is our righteousness.'”

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  15. So branch/netzer is another way of saying Messiah.Zechariah lived around 500 BC and the Hebrew way of saying Yeshua/Jesus is JOSHUA.

    At the time the name of the Jewish High Priest in the Temple of Jerusalem was Joshua.

    Here the name of the netzer,or Messiah,is told.

    Zechariah 3:8-9(God is talking to the High Priest Joshua)

    ” ‘Listen, Joshua, the high priest, and your friends who are sitting in front of you.

    They are symbols of what will happen.

    I am going to bring my servant the Branch.

    Zechariah 6:9-12

    Here the crown is the symbol of the king.

    ” The Lord spoke his word to me, saying,

    “Take silver and gold from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who were captives in Babylon. Go that same day to the house of Josiah son of Zephaniah, who came from Babylon.

    Make the silver and gold into a crown,

    and put it on the head of Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest.

    and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Behold, the man(reference to Joshua,the High Priest)

    whose name(Joshua)

    is the Branch: for he shall grow up in his place, and he shall build the temple of the Lord.”

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  16. There is a prophecy that speaks of a man of God,it is believed to be about the Messiah,since his influence will be wordwide,

    and that HE will be a covenant to the people

    Here I use the CJB(Complete Jewish Bible) translation,ADONAI is Hebrew for Lord,but in Hebrew it is YHWH(Yahweh)..

    And goyim means “non-Jews”.It is in biblegateway.com:

    Isaiah 42:1-7

    ““Here is my servant, whom I support,
    my chosen one, in whom I take pleasure
    .
    I have put my Spirit on him;
    he will bring justice to the Goyim.

    He will not cry or shout;
    no one will hear his voice in the streets.
    He will not snap off a broken reed
    or snuff out a smoldering wick.

    He will bring forth justice according to truth;
    He will not weaken or be crushed
    until he has established justice on the earth,
    and the coastlands wait for his Torah(law,teaching)…………………………………………………“I, Adonai, called you righteously,

    I took hold of you by the hand,
    I shaped you and made YOU a COVENANT for the people,
    to be a light for the Goyim,

    so that you can open blind eyes,
    free the prisoners from confinement,
    those living in darkness from the dungeon.”

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  17. Richard, why don’t you start your own blog?

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Greetings Paul:

    I never thought of it,it wouldn’t have a big audience. It would be great if the Pope were to,in his Twitter account,link to articles with information similar to what I wrote.

    Like link to articles by Brant Pitre. The Pope has 19.5 million Twitter followers on nine language accounts, up from 14 million in 2014,LITTLE compared to the 1 billion Catholics in total.

    He has sent 900 Twitter messages but if you go to his Twitter messages he only says platitudes,he never gives intellectual reasons for believing in anything,not even intellectual reasons for believing in God.

    The Pope never links to articles that gives reasons to believe in God,or Jesus in the NT.And he is a Jesuit,to be one you have to have a high IQ,study a lot of intellectual subjects,pass them in exams.

    The Pope is a failure,with all the influence and money and technology at his disposal,to educate Catholics and others,and not just say psychological mumbo-jumbo,and clichés,he does nothing.

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    • Maybe the Pope never links to articles that gives reasons to believe in the triune God,or Jesus in the NT, because he has a high IQ, studied a lot of intellectual subjects, passed them in exams?

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  19. The authenticity of the passage is still in question today. The argument has strong positions both for and against an early date for the passage.
    It’s not true that the passage is only found in later medieval texts, also a few Christians quoted it in the 3rd, 4th and 5th century such as Ambrose, Jerome and Augustine. It’s also mentioned in a work known as the Didascalia which is dated to about 230AD. This gives us reason to believe that there was some kind of historical tradition to this passage of the adulterous woman. I believe a Christian writer from those times (can’t remember who) also mentioned that the passage may have been removed from certain scrolls or manuscripts because some church leaders feared that people would use it as an excuse to commit adultery, despite the fact that it ends with Jesus saying “sin no more”.

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    • shocking to hear that early Christians were in the habit of changing their scriptures

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    • Hmm, had the early Quran codices not been burnt by the Uthman recension I’m sure we would have observed a similar thing with the Quran. The Sana manuscript of the Quran which has survived has with it some variants in the lower text which can cause a difference in meaning to what we currently read.

      It seems no scripture is perfect but that is a harder pill to swallow for the Muslims who believe the Quran is entirely perfect with no errors, changes or inconsistencies.

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    • “can cause a difference in meaning to what we currently read.”

      Please cite an example.

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    • Perhaps if I have more time, otherwise check them yourself.

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    • so you cant provide any evidence for your claim. Telling..

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  20. Jack,

    But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)

    Even Rabbi Tovia anticipated the response in his video that some would say might argue that regardless if it is missing in a few of the manuscripts it is abundantly attested to in thousands of other ones!

    Your reasoning for why it may have been removed from the text hardly matters if these texts are divinely inspired! Who has a right to edit the word of God! scripture is clear! The Rabbi even quoted from Revelation about the consequences for anyone who either adds or takes away from the text!

    Appealing to the Quran doesn’t get us Christians off the hook with the textual issues and problems we must deal with (the added material to Mark 16 for example). One thing I have learned from the day I stumbled on this blog is the double standards that Christians tend to operate from! That’s why, for me at least, hearing the arguments from both sides is so paramount to either enriching my faith or abandoning it if the evidence calls for it!

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  21. Greetings Jason:

    I think the evidence is that majority of scribes who copied were honest,one thing that impressed me a lot is concerning the most famous addition:Mark 16:9-20(12 verses).

    Bruce Metzger(1914-2007) was an American scholar and is widely considered one of the most influential New Testament scholars of the 20th century.

    He wrote that scribes had the habit of indicating by a sign in their copy what passages they thought were doubtful.

    Not only scribes but important leaders like Eusebius(260-340),the Father of Church History, and Jerome( 347-420),who translated the Bible into Latin, wrote of their doubts.

    Source

    http://www.bible-researcher.com/endmark.html

    “Bruce Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament (Stuttgart, 1971), pages 122-126.

    16:9-20 The Ending(s) of Mark.

    Four endings of the Gospel according to Mark are current in the manuscripts.

    (1) The last twelve verses of the commonly received text of Mark are absent

    from the two oldest Greek manuscripts (א and B), from the Old Latin codex Bobiensis (it k),

    the Sinaitic Syriac manuscript,

    about one hundred Armenian manuscripts, and the two oldest Georgian manuscripts (written A.D. 897 and A.D. 913).

    Clement of Alexandria and Origen show no knowledge of the existence of these verses;

    furthermore Eusebius and Jerome attest that the passage was absent from almost all Greek copies of Mark known to them.

    The original form of the Eusebian sections (drawn up by Ammonius) makes no provision for numbering sections of the text after 16:8.

    Not a few manuscripts which contain the passage

    have scribal notes stating that older Greek copies lack it,

    and in other witnesses the passage is marked with asterisks or obeli, the conventional signs used by copyists to indicate a spurious addition to a document.”

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  22. Here is another example,as Dr Lydia McGrew calls it,of an undesigned coincidence in the gospels.

    For the record,scholars are divided 50/50 if the author of John read the Synoptics,or wrote entirely independently.I am almost sure Bart Ehrman wrote he thinks John is independent,so the undesigned coincidence here is 50% probable.

    A.In Luke 23:1-4, we read:

    “Then the whole assembly rose and led him off to Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.”

    So Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

    “You have said so,” Jesus replied.

    Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”

    This seems to be a strange declaration to make. Jesus has just declared Himself to be a King, and has been charged with subverting the nation and opposing paying taxes to Caesar. Why has Pilate found no basis for a charge against him?

    B.The answer lies in the parallel account in John’s gospel (18:33-38):

    “Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

    “Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?”

    “Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?”

    Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

    “You are a king, then!” said Pilate.

    Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

    “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him.”

    It is only when you read John’s account that you learn that Jesus had told Pilate that “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

    C.But there is also another intriguing feature related to this passage.

    Why, in John’s account, does Pilate even ask Jesus whether He is a King? We learn the answer in Luke 23:2. The allegation which is made in Luke’s gospel is not recorded in John’s.

    “And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.””

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  23. There are 2 aspects to the undesigned coincidences,the internal(between Gospels) and external(a gospel and a non-Christian book).

    Here is an external undesigned coincidence:

    Example 1:

    In Matthew 2:22, we are told:

    “But when [Joseph] heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Then after being waned by God in an dream, he left for the regions of Galilee.”

    Josephus(44-100 AD) in his Antiquities 17.3.1 tells us that the domain of Herod the Great was divided among his sons, with Archelaus having authority in Judea but not in Galilee, which was governed by his younger brother, Herod Antipas.

    Archelaus had acquired a bloody reputation (Antiquities 17.13.1-2 and 17.9.3). The latter of these references describes how Archelaus slaughtered 3,000 Jews at Passover. Thus, Joseph decides not to return to Judea and, instead, goes further north to the regions of Galilee, governed by Herod Antipas.

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  24. Dude you definitely need to start your own blog…

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  25. Richard, you just don’t get the hint!

    If you want to post endless and massive comments (and nearly always off topic) – go and start your own blog. Kindly don’t clog up this one.

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  26. Greetings Paul:
    You are right,I have overdone it,my apology,so I will limit my comments to the topic,or to comment on a comment.There is not much else to add.

    Jason had written:

    “But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)”

    To answer,the evidence is the following,that the scribes in general were honest:

    A.Mark and Revelation are written in bad Greek,yet they never corrected the grammar(for them it was the Word of God,even if in bad Greek).

    B.There are more than 30 passages in total,several are repetitions,in the 4 gospels,that are anti-propaganda,embarrassing.

    The fact we have them proves the scribes were honest in copying,they could have eliminated them,they are:

    1)Jesus’ family thought he was crazy:Mark 3:20-21

    2)The religious leaders thought Jesus was demon-possessed:Mark 3:22-26

    3)The people of Nazareth,his hometown(100 people) and his family didn’t believe he was a prophet:Mark 6:1-6,Matthew 13:54-58

    4)Jesus’ brothers didn’t believe in him:John 7:1-5

    5)Women went with Jesus from village to village:Luke 8:1-3

    6)Peter is called Satan by Jesus:Mark 15:33-34,Matthew 16:21-23

    7)On the cross Jesus says:”My God,why have you forsaken me”:Mark 15:33-34,Matthew 27:45-46

    8)Pilate was surprised Jesus died so early:Mark 15:43-45

    9)There was a naked man the night Jesus was arrested:Mark 14:49-52

    10)Jesus says:”Why do you call me good?No one is good but God”:Mark 10:17-18,Luke 18:18-19

    11)John Baptist doubted Jesus was the Messiah:Luke 7:19-20

    12)Jesus had to try twice to heal a blind man:Mark 8:22-26

    13)Jesus said:”This generation will not pass until all these things have happened.”:Mark 13:30,Matthew 24:34,Luke 21:32(for me ,this is the supreme example the scribes were faithful in copying)

    14)Jesus cursed a fig-tree even though it wasn’t the time for figs:Mark 11:12-14

    15)Jesus apparently insults a pagan woman:Mark 7:25-29

    16)After the resurrection there were disciples who doubted:Matthew 28:17-20

    17)Even though Jesus on 3 separate occasions predicts his death and resurrection:

    1st time:Mark 8:31,Matthew 16:21,Luke 9:22

    2nd time:Mark 9:31,Luke 9:43-44,Matthew 17:22-23

    3rd time:Mark 10:32-34,Luke 18:31-34,Matthew 20:17-19

    Yet on 4 occasions the disciples,after hearing that Jesus resurrected,didn’t believe it:

    Luke 24:9-11,Luke 24:21-27, Luke 24:35-43(they thought he was a ghost),John 20:19-20(doubting Thomas)

    18)Peter denies Jesus 3 times after his arrest:Luke 22:54-62,Mark 14:66-72,Matthew 26:69-75,John 18:13-27

    19)There is tension and bad feeling between Jesus and his family:Mark 3:31-35,Luke 8:19-21,Matthew 12:46-50

    Like

  27. In my view he is mostly wrong. Where is his authority anyway?

    Nearly impossible to convict someone of adultery? This is rubbish in my view.

    Sinaiticus the bible because someone found it in a desert monastery? Also rubbish in my view.

    He also holds views contrary to Islam, namely that the OT needs no additional revelation and is not corrupted. Both contrary to the teaching of Islam. As a liberal Jew he is against both Islam and Christianity. This backfires on you.

    Like

    • Well madman, he certainly has more authority than you. At least he’s a learned scholar. You are just another random ignoramus.

      Holding views contrary to Islam? Perhaps, but that doesn’t change the fact that he is right about the pericope of the adultress. Even your own scholars admit that this story is not authentic and was a later addition. Changing the topic to Islam might always be your last desperate resort, but it doesn’t change the facts about your Bible. Get over it! 😉

      Like

  28. To Jason:

    You said:

    “Again, I’m not trying to be insensitive to my fellow Christians, but I would argue that there is a ton of myth making in all of the Gospel accounts………………………………..If anybody has any suggestions or books they would recommend to help shed light Christian/Jew/Muslim, please help a brother out.​”

    And also:​

    “But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)”

    To continue to try to answer you about the reliability of the gospels:

    Two books to check out to see if the gospel information on Jesus is legend or if it is the C.S. Lewis Trilemma of:

    Lord,Lunatic or Liar

    are Brant Pitre’s “The Case for Jesus”(2016) and chapter 2 (“The Bible’s Portrait of Jesus Can’t be Trusted because the Church Tampered with the Text”

    and chapter 4(“Christianity’s Beliefs about Jesus were copied from Pagan Religions”) in “The Case for the Real Jesus”(2007)by Lee Strobel.

    A.Are the gospels lying when they say Jesus healed people?

    The answer is even very,very liberal NT scholars say Jesus really did something that seemed miraculous,the gospels are based on a basic historicity here.

    There was a Russian huckster called Rasputin(1869-1916) who pretended to be a holy man and who had amazing hypnotic powers.

    Both believers and his enemies have written that his eyes had an astonishing hypnotic power.Rasputin loved to drink and use his power to sleep with women,but he was not greedy,he didn’t care about money,and gave much to poor people.

    He was also a Russian patriot who tried to use his influence with the Tsar,Nicholas II, to prevent Russia from participating in WW I,he knew it would kill many poor,ordinary Russians.

    For several years Rasputin was able to stop the bleeding and pain of the Tsar’s son,Alexis,who had hemophilia.The Empress believed in Rasputin,in this article,it is a case of the power of the mind:

    http://petersburgcity.com/news/city/2004/08/13/rasputin_tsarevich_alexey/

    The article says:

    “The study says that stable and positive emotional state of the mother reduces the number of spontaneous bleedings in their hemophiliac sons. Tsarevich Alexei is cited as an example.

    “All archive material shows that Tsarevich Alexei suffered from a severe form of hemophilia,” Danilov wrote.

    “As Pierre Gilliard witnessed, the empress was frustrated to see the boy’s bleedings, and Dr. Botkin appeared helpless, and only Rasputin’s entrances coincided with improvements of the boy’s condition. But the royal family had an incredible faith in Rasputin, so they were all always relieved to see him.”

    As Danilov explains, it is well known that hypnosis narrows minor arteries. As a person calms down, the blood circulation slows down, and vice versa.

    “As Rasputin was entering the tsarevich’s room, he was confidence personified; he would say loudly that the pain would soon go and the boy trusted him,” Danilov said.

    “Positive emotions reduced the bleedings, the boy was falling asleep, and the bleedings eventually stopped.””

    There is a super-skeptical NT group of scholars:Protestants,Catholics,atheists,Jews,called the Jesus Seminar(founded in 1985 by Robert Funk,atheist,ex-Christian and John Dominic Crossan,ex-Catholic priest).

    They were 150 before,now are like 75.One of their members used to be Robert Price,atheist,ex-Christian,who now says Jesus never existed.

    http://christiananswers.net/q-eden/edn-t017.html

    The Jesus Seminar says in “The Five Gospels: What Did Jesus Really Say?” (1993),where they accept the Gospel of Thomas(written after 175 AD,but which they think is from the 1st century) as the 5th gospel.

    They took 6 years to write the book and classified the sayings of Jesus by color:

    red means Jesus said it;

    pink means it’s close to what He said;

    gray means He didn’t say it in this form but there are echoes of His teaching in it;

    and black means the saying didn’t come from Him at all.

    Only 20% of the sayings were chosen as being red and pink.But 20% is still a lot of sayings:

    90 sayings in total:15 sayings are red and 75 sayings are pink.

    The Jesus Seminar scholars believe Jesus did psychosomatic miracles,not nature miracles(resurrecting Lazarus,calming a storm,walking on water).

    John Dominic Crossan said in “The Historical Jesus:The Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant”(1991,page 332):

    “Jesus was both an exorcist and a healer.”

    Robert Funk and in fact the Jesus Seminar itself,in the book “The Acts of Jesus:What did Jesus Really Do?” by “Robert Funk and the Jesus Seminar”(1998,page 527)

    make a list of the “basic facts” about Jesus and among them say that he was a “charismatic healer and exorcist”.

    Marcus Borg,a prominent Jesus Seminar member,said:

    “Despite the difficulty which miracles pose for the modern mind,on historical grounds it is virtually indisputable that Jesus was a healer and exorcist.”

    (“Jesus,A New Vision:Spirit,Culture,and the Life of Discipleship”(1991,page 61)

    Borg and the others of the Jesus Seminar don’t mean real healings,but that Jesus healed the conversion disorders(the symptoms associated with real illnesses) or in other cases Jesus healed psychosomatic disorders(when you are healthy,but for psychological reasons feel sick,and it affects your body).

    A modern example is that of a UK teenager who had the condition called reptilian skin(ichthyosis)on his arm,and saw a doctor,who used suggestion to try to help him.

    The boy believed it,and in the next few weeks his skin became,in most of the arm,normal.Something that shouldn’t have happened,the power of the mind.The case of told in Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ”(1998).

    Rudolf Bultmann(1884-1976),German,and he is huge,maybe the most important LIBERAL NT scholar of the 20th century wrote in “Jesus and the Word”(1958,page 124):

    “There can be no doubt that Jesus the kinds of deeds which were miracles to his mind and to the minds of his contemporaries”.

    Another example of the power of the mind is the case of Norman Cousins,who is famous for the Hiroshima maidens event in 1955(25 girls whose faces had been ruined in 1945 because of the atomic bomb).

    Cousins had a terrible disease,of which he cured himself through laughter and positive thinking(the power of the mind),he recorded it in his book:“Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient”(1979).

    B.Did the early Christians have the habit of inventing sayings of Jesus to settle disputes,situations?

    Paul in his famous 1 Corinthians epistle,and he was a leading leader,shows us that it was not acceptable.First Corinthians is famous for having the 1 Corinthians 15:3-7 creed,and stating the oral tradition of the New Covenant saying of Jesus at the Last Supper(1 Corinthians 11).

    It is also famous for chapter 7,where Paul explicitly states what part of his teaching is his own opinion,not Jesus'(the Lord’s):

    1 Corinthians 7:10-40

    “To the married I give charge,

    not I,

    but the Lord,

    that the wife should not separate from her husband,but if she does, let her remain single or else be reconciled to her husband,and that the husband should not divorce his wife.

    To the rest I say,

    not the Lord,

    that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her………………… Now concerning the unmarried,

    I have no command of the Lord,

    but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy.I think that in view of the present distress it is well for a person to remain as he is…………………..A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If the husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

    But in my judgment she is happier if she remains as she is. And I think that I have the Spirit of God.”

    C.Did the writers of the gospels intend to write history,biographies,according to the standards of antiquity?

    Yes. In 1986 scholar Charles Talbert wrote “What is a Gospel?”,where he argued the 4 gospels were written as real biographies,according to antiquity.Classicist scholar Richard Burridge read it,and disagreed,decided to write a book to disprove it,but due to his research,came to the exact conclusion.

    Burridge’s idea is now accepted by most NT scholars.He wrote “What are the Gospels?A Comparison with Greco-Roman Biography”(1992).He compared all the known biographies in Greek and Latin before and after Jesus.

    His findings:

    1.Ancient biographies often average between 10,000 and 20,000 words in length.

    2.Ancient biographies often begin with ancestry.

    3.They don’t say everything about a person.

    4.They focus on the life and death of a single person

    D.Do variants in the NT really matter?

    There are from 200,000 to maybe 400,000 variants,of which the vast majority are of no importance at all:being spelling errors(70-80%),grammatical errors,nonsense errors,

    variants including synonyms(“Jesus said” or “the Lord said”).

    The early Christian writers quoted from the NT many times,that is another way to see if a scribe changed a passage.It is verification using a non-NT text.

    Only 50 passages in the NT(I don’t know how many in the gospels) have variants that are significant.

    But none of these 50 different passages affect any Christian doctrine:none say “Jesus was NOT the Messiah” or “There is NO God” or “Jesus did NOT resurrect”.

    In many NT’s at the bottom you can see footnotes that show the variant texts,say a passage has 3 variants(imaginary example):

    “Jesus went to Galilee”

    “He went to Galilee with his disciples”

    “Jesus decided to go to Galilee,and the apostle also”.

    Scholars believe we have the original text,but we don’t know which exactly,but it is one of the 3 variants.And none affect doctrine.

    Usually the shorter variant is more probable to be the original text.Sometimes not,in one variant,instead of “Barabbas” it is “Jesus Barabbas“. Scholars think the original text said “Jesus Barabbas”,but scribes disliked it,since he was a bad Jesus,so intentionally didn’t copy it.

    E.But doesn’t having only complete copies of the gospels that are late mean that we can’t be reasonably sure that real corruption happened before?

    It is true,the complete copies of the gospels are late:

    A 90% copy of John is from 180-200 AD (P 66,papyrus 66)

    Luke and John are almost entirely copied in P 75,a book with those 2 gospels(late 200s-early 300s)

    A complete copy of Mark and Matthew are,I think,from the early 300s.

    So corruption could have happened in between,from 50-70 AD till more than 200 years later.

    But if a lot of scribes felt like changing

    to make Jesus and the disciples look better,

    how did those 30 plus embarrassing and very embarrassing passages I showed before ever survive 200 plus years of corruption?

    F.Specially this very embarassing passage:

    Jesus said:”This generation will not pass until all these things have happened.”:Mark 13:30,Matthew 24:34,Luke 21:32(for me ,this is the supreme example the scribes were faithful in copying)

    It is about the 2nd Coming of Jesus,he said the Temple of Jerusalem would be destroyed and he,Jesus,would return in glory in “this generation”.

    Q is a collection of 50 sayings of Jesus,found in Matthew and Luke,but absent in Mark,written around 50 AD.One of the sayings is a prophecy by Jesus:

    Luke 13:34-35/Matthew 23:37-38

    ““Jerusalem, Jerusalem! You kill the prophets and stone to death those who are sent to you. Many times I wanted to gather your people as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not let me.

    Now your house is left completely empty. I(Jesus)

    tell you(Jerusalem),

    you(Jerusalem)

    will not see me(Jesus) until that time

    when you will say

    (Psalm 118:26), ‘God bless the One who comes in the name of the Lord.’””(in other words,accepts Jesus as Messiah)

    In the gospels Jesus quotes Psalm 118:22: “The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone.” and says it is about himself.

    He quotes it after saying the Parable of the Tenants(Matthew 21:28-46; Mark 12:1-12; Luke 20:9-19). This parable is about the death of Jesus,the Messiah and:

    The landowner – represents God
    The vineyard – His Kingdom
    The tenants – specifically Israel’s religious leaders
    The servants – God’s prophets
    The beloved son – Jesus

    There are various ways to explain the “this generation” problem but the best one is this:

    a)In the Q saying quoted Jesus puts a CONDITION for his 2nd Coming:that he be accepted by Jerusalem as Messiah.

    b)The “this generation” prophecy is dependent on that condition.

    c)A generation in the Bible is 40 years:the number 40 appears more than 20 times in the Bible:40 days,40 years,40 lashes,etc.

    d)Jesus died in 30 AD. So 30 AD plus 40 years= 70 AD(the year the Temple was destroyed)

    Jesus gave Jerusalem 40 years time to accept him as the Messiah.

    e)A boy and girl became adults at age 14(or maybe 12) then,so “this generation” in Jesus’ prophecy was all from 14 years old and up.

    f)90% of people then were dead by age 40(it is in a book by John Dominic Crossan),but since an adult began at age 14,by 70 AD there would still be a few who would be 54.

    G.There is external evidence about this 40 year trial period of Jerusalem

    There are 2 Talmuds,the earlier Jerusalem Talmud,and the Babylon Talmud(the one used today).

    They were written late,the Jerusalem Talmud is from 400 AD(final redaction) and the Babylonian Talmud from 500 AD(final redaction).

    The Jewish rabbis had no reason to invent things that would favor Jesus.

    The most holy Jewish day is Yom Kippus”Day of Atonement”,when once a year the Hight Priest would make a sacrifice to atone for the sins of the Jewish people.

    The priests would use certain techniques to know if God approved or not the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    And both Talmuds report that for 40 years before the destruction fo the Temple,the signs were that God REJECTED the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    http://www3.telus.net/public/kstam/en/temple/details/evidence.htm

    We read in the Jerusalem Talmud:

    Forty years before the destruction of the Temple, the western light went out, the crimson thread remained crimson,

    and the lot for the Lord ALWAYS came up in the left hand.(sign that God rejected the Yom Kippur sacrifice)

    They would close the gates of the Temple by night and get up in the morning and find them wide open” (Jacob Neusner, The Yerushalmi, p.156-157). [the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE]

    A similar passage in the Babylonian Talmud states:

    “Our rabbis taught: During the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple

    the lot [‘For the Lord’]

    did not come up in the right hand;

    nor did the crimson-colored strap become white;

    nor did the western most light shine; and the doors of the Hekel [Temple] would open by themselves” (Soncino version, Yoma 39b).

    What is the way historians try to determine if what Jesus says in the Gospels is authentic?

    It is the Historical Method,which has several criterions for discovering what really happened in history,or at least,what most probably happened:

    1.The criterion of dissimilarity

    2.That of early attestation

    3.That of multiple attestation

    4.That of enemy attestation

    5.That of embarrassing attestion(like the 30 plus counter-propaganda passages I showed,which are also more or less early,the vast majority before 61 AD)

    So there 3 kinds of sayings in the 4 gospels that are from Jesus or are probably by him:

    The Son of Man sayings:

    Here is the criterion of dissimilarity(the Christian writers,not even Paul,call Jesus with that title),and the criterion of multiple attestation,early attestation.

    The “I say to you” sayings:

    Jewish teachers said “It is written(in Scripture)” but not “I say to you”,which means “I tell you on my authority”.

    The “Kingdom of God” sayings:

    Scholars believed it was a central message of Jesus,announcing the coming Messianic age,or rule of God on earth,”the Kingdom of God”.

    Like

  29. To Jason:

    You said:

    “Again, I’m not trying to be insensitive to my fellow Christians, but I would argue that there is a ton of myth making in all of the Gospel accounts………………………………..If anybody has any suggestions or books they would recommend to help shed light Christian/Jew/Muslim, please help a brother out.​”

    And also:​

    “But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)”

    To continue to try to answer you about the reliability of the gospels:

    Two books to check out to see if the gospel information on Jesus is legend or if it is the C.S. Lewis Trilemma of:

    Lord,Lunatic or Liar

    are Brant Pitre’s “The Case for Jesus”(2016) and chapter 2 (“The Bible’s Portrait of Jesus Can’t be Trusted because the Church Tampered with the Text” and chapter 4(“Christianity’s Beliefs about Jesus were copied from Pagan Religions”) in “The Case for the Real Jesus”(2007)by Lee Strobel.

    A.Are the gospels lying when they say Jesus healed people?

    The answer is even very,very liberal NT scholars say Jesus really did something that seemed miraculous,the gospels are based on a basic historicity here.

    There was a Russian huckster called Rasputin(1869-1916) who pretended to be a holy man and who had amazing hypnotic powers.

    Both believers and his enemies have written that his eyes had an astonishing hypnotic power.Rasputin loved to drink and use his power to sleep with women,but he was not greedy,he didn’t care about money,and gave much to poor people.

    He was also a Russian patriot who tried to use his influence with the Tsar,Nicholas II, to prevent Russia from participating in WW I,he knew it would kill many poor,ordinary Russians.

    For several years Rasputin was able to stop the bleeding and pain of the Tsar’s son,Alexis,who had hemophilia.The Empress believed in Rasputin,in this article,it is a case of the power of the mind:

    http://petersburgcity.com/news/city/2004/08/13/rasputin_tsarevich_alexey/

    The article says:

    “The study says that stable and positive emotional state of the mother reduces the number of spontaneous bleedings in their hemophiliac sons. Tsarevich Alexei is cited as an example.

    “All archive material shows that Tsarevich Alexei suffered from a severe form of hemophilia,” Danilov wrote. “As Pierre Gilliard witnessed, the empress was frustrated to see the boy’s bleedings, and Dr. Botkin appeared helpless,

    and only Rasputin’s entrances coincided with improvements of the boy’s condition.

    But the royal family had an incredible faith in Rasputin, so they were all always relieved to see him.”

    As Danilov explains, it is well known that hypnosis narrows minor arteries. As a person calms down, the blood circulation slows down, and vice versa.

    “As Rasputin was entering the tsarevich’s room, he was confidence personified;

    he would say loudly that the pain would soon go and the boy trusted him,”

    Danilov said. “Positive emotions reduced the bleedings, the boy was falling asleep, and the bleedings eventually stopped.”

    There is a super-skeptical NT group of scholars:Protestants,Catholics,atheists,Jews,called the Jesus Seminar(founded in 1985 by Robert Funk,atheist,ex-Christian).

    They were 150 before,now are like 75.One of their members used to be Robert Price,atheist,ex-Christian,and John Dominic Crossan,ex-Catholic priest,who now says Jesus never existed.

    http://christiananswers.net/q-eden/edn-t017.html

    The Jesus Seminar says in “The Five Gospels: What Did Jesus Really Say?” (1993),where they accept the Gospel of Thomas(written after 175 AD,but which they think is from the 1st century) as the 5th gospel.

    They took 6 years to write the book and classified the sayings of Jesus by color:

    red means Jesus said it;

    pink means it’s close to what He said;

    gray means He didn’t say it in this form but there are echoes of His teaching in it;

    and black means the saying didn’t come from Him at all.

    Only 20% of the sayings were chosen as being red and pink.But 20% is still a lot of sayings:

    90 sayings in total:15 sayings are red and 75 sayings are pink.

    The Jesus Seminar scholars believe Jesus did psychosomatic miracles,not nature miracles(resurrecting Lazarus,calming a storm,walking on water).

    John Dominic Crossan said in “The Historical Jesus:The Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant”(1991,page 332):

    “Jesus was both an exorcist and a healer.”

    Robert Funk and in fact the Jesus Seminar itself,in the book “The Acts of Jesus:What did Jesus Really Do?” by “Robert Funk and the Jesus Seminar”(1998,page 527)

    make a list of the “basic facts” about Jesus and among them say that he was a “charismatic healer and exorcist”.

    Marcus Borg,a prominent member,said:

    “Despite the difficulty which miracles pose for the modern mind,on historical grounds it is virtually indisputable that Jesus was a healer and exorcist.”(“Jesus,A Nw Vision:Spirit,Culture,and the Life of Discipleship”(1991,page 61)

    Borg and the others of the Jesus Seminar don’t mean real healings,but that Jesus healed the conversion disorders(the symptoms associated with real illnesses) or in other cases Jesus healed psychosomatic disorders(when you are healthy,but for psychological reasons feel sick,and it affects your body).

    A modern example is that of a UK teenager who had the condition called reptilian skin(ichthyosis)in his arm,and saw a doctor,who used suggestion to try to help him.

    The boy believed it,and in the next few weeks his skin became,in most of the arm,normal.Something that shouldn’t have happened,the power of the mind.The case of told in Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ”.

    Rudolf Bultmann(1884-1976),German,and he is huge,maybe the most important liberal NT scholar of the 20th century wrote in “Jesus and the Word”(1958,page 124):

    “There can be no doubt that Jesus the kinds of deeds which were miracles to his mind and to the minds of his contemporaries”.

    Another example of the power of the mind is the case of Norman Cousins,who is famous for the Hiroshima maidens event in 1955(25 girls whose faces had been ruined in 1945 because of the atomic bomb).

    Cousins had a terrible disease,of which he cured himself through laughter and positive thinking(the power of the mind),he recorded it in his book:”Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient”(1979).

    B.Did the early Christians have the habit of inventing sayings of Jesus to settle disputes,situations?

    Paul in his famous 1 Corinthians epistle,and he was a leading leader,shows us that it was not acceptable.First Corinthians is famous for having the 1 Corinthians 15:3-7 creed,and stating the oral tradition of the New Covenant saying of Jesus at the Last Supper(1 Corinthians 11).

    It is also famous for chapter 7,where Paul explicitly states what part of his teaching is his own opinion,not Jesus'(the Lord’s):

    1 Corinthians 7:10-40

    “To the married I give charge,

    not I but the Lord,

    that the wife should not separate from her husband,but if she does, let her remain single or else be reconciled to her husband,and that the husband should not divorce his wife.

    To the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her………………… Now concerning the unmarried,

    I have no command of the Lord,

    but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy.I think that in view of the present distress it is well for a person to remain as he is…………………..A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If the husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

    But in my judgment she is happier if she remains as she is. And I think that I have the Spirit of God.”

    C.Did the writers of the gospels intend to write history,biographies,according to the standards of antiquity?

    Yes. In 1986 scholar Charles Talbert wrote “What is a Gospel?”,where he argued the 4 gospels were written as real biographies,according to antiquity.Classicist scholar Richard Burridge read it,and disagreed,decided to write a book to disprove it,but due to his research,came to the exact conclusion.

    Burridge’s idea is now accepted by most NT scholars.He wrote “What are the Gospels?A Comparison with Greco-Roman Biography”(1992).He compared all the known biographies in Greek and Latin before and after Jesus.

    His findings:

    1.Ancient biographies often average between 10,000 and 20,000 words in length.

    2.Ancient biographies often begin with ancestry.

    3.They don’t say everything about a person.

    4.They focus on the life and death of a single person

    D.Do variants in the NT really matter?

    There are from 200,000 to maybe 400,000 variants,of which the vast majority are of no importance at all:being spelling errors(70-80%),grammatical errors,nonsense errors,

    variants including synonyms(“Jesus said” or “the Lord said”).

    The early Christian writers quoted from the NT many times,that is another way to see if a scribe changed a passage.It is verification using a non-NT text.

    Only 50 passages in the NT(I don’t know how many in the gospels) have variants that are significant.

    But none of these 50 different passages affect any Christian doctrine:none say “Jesus was NOT the Messiah” or “There is NO God” or “Jesus did NOT resurrect”.

    In many NT’s at the bottom you can see footnotes that show the variant texts,say a passage has 3 variants(imaginary example):

    “Jesus went to Galilee”

    “He went to Galilee with his disciples”

    “Jesus decided to go to Galilee,and the apostle also”.

    Scholars believe we have the original text,but we don’t know which exactly,but it is one of the 3 variants.And none affect doctrine.

    Usually the shorter variant is more probable to be the original text.Sometimes not,in one variant,instead of “Barabbas” it is “Jesus Barabbas”. Scholars think the original text said “Jesus Barabbas”,but scribes disliked it,since he was a bad Jesus,so intentionally didn’t copy it.

    E.But doesn’t having only complete copies of the gospels that are late mean that we can’t be reasonably sure that real corruption happened before?

    It is true,the complete copies of the gospels are late:

    A 90% copy of John is from 180-200 AD (P 66,papyrus 66)

    Luke and John are almost entirely copied in P 75,a book with those 2 gospels(late 200s-early 300s)

    A complete copy of Mark and Matthew are,I think,from the early 300s.

    So corruption could have happened in between,from 50-70 AD till more than 200 years later.

    But if a lot of scribes felt like changing

    to make Jesus and the disciples look better,

    how did those 30 plus embarrassing and very embarrassing passages I showed before ever survive 200 plus years of corruption?

    F.Specially this very embarassing passage:

    Jesus said:”This generation will not pass until all these things have happened.”:Mark 13:30,Matthew 24:34,Luke 21:32(for me ,this is the supreme example the scribes were faithful in copying)

    It is about the 2nd Coming of Jesus,he said the Temple of Jerusalem would be destroyed and he,Jesus,would return in glory in “this generation”.

    Q is a collection of 50 sayings of Jesus,found in Matthew and Luke,but absent in Mark,written around 50 AD.One of the sayings is a prophecy by Jesus:

    Luke 13:34-35/Matthew 23:37-38

    ““Jerusalem, Jerusalem! You kill the prophets and stone to death those who are sent to you. Many times I wanted to gather your people as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not let me.

    Now your house is left completely empty. I tell you(Jerusalem),

    you(Jerusalem)

    will not see me(Jesus) until that time

    when you will say(Psalm 118:26), ‘God bless the One who comes in the name of the Lord.’””(in other words,accepts Jesus as Messiah)

    In the gospels Jesus quotes Psalm 118:22: “The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone.” and says it is about himself.

    He quotes it after saying the Parable of the Tenants(Matthew 21:28-46; Mark 12:1-12; Luke 20:9-19) This parable is about the death of Jesus,the Messiah and:

    The landowner – represents God
    The vineyard – His Kingdom
    The tenants – specifically Israel’s religious leaders
    The servants – God’s prophets
    The beloved son – Jesus
    There are various ways to explain the “this generation” problem but the best one is this:

    a)In the Q saying quoted Jesus puts a CONDITION for his 2nd Coming:that he be accepted by Jerusalem as Messiah.

    b)The “this generation” prophecy is dependent on that condition.

    c)A generation in the Bible is 40 years:the number 40 appears more than 20 times in the Bible:40 days,40 years,40 lashes,etc.

    d)Jesus died in 30 AD. So 30 AD plus 40 years= 70 AD(the year the Temple was destroyed)

    Jesus gave Jerusalem 40 years time to accept him as the Messiah.

    e)A boy and girl became adults at age 14(or maybe 12) then,so “this generation” in Jesus’ prophecy was all from 14 years old and up.

    f)90% of people then were dead by age 40(this is in a book by John Dominic Crossan),but since an adult began at age 14,by 70 AD there would still be a few who would be 54.

    G.There is external evidence about this 40 year trial period of Jerusalem

    There are 2 Talmuds,the earlier Jerusalem Talmud,and the Babylon Talmud(the one used today).

    They were written late,the Jerusalem Talmud is from 400 AD(final redaction) and the Babylonian Talmud from 500 AD(final redaction).

    The Jewish rabbis had no reason to invent things that would favor Jesus.The most holy Jewish day is Yom Kippus”Day of Atonement”,when once a year the Hight Priest would make a sacrifice to atone for the sins of the Jewish people.

    The priests would use certain techniques to know if God approved or not the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    And both Talmuds report that for 40 years before the destruction fo the Temple,the signs were that God REJECTED the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    http://www3.telus.net/public/kstam/en/temple/details/evidence.htm

    We read in the Jerusalem Talmud:
    “Forty years before the destruction of the Temple,

    the western light went out, the crimson thread remained crimson,

    and the lot for the Lord ALWAYS came up in the left hand(sign God rejected the Yom Kippur sacrifice).

    They would close the gates of the Temple by night and get up in the morning and find them wide open” (Jacob Neusner, The Yerushalmi, p.156-157). [the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE]
    A similar passage in the Babylonian Talmud states:
    “Our rabbis taught:

    During the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple

    the lot [‘For the Lord’] did not come up in the right hand;

    nor did the crimson-colored strap become white; nor did the western most light shine; and the doors of the Hekel [Temple] would open by themselves” (Soncino version, Yoma 39b).

    What is the way historians try to determine if what Jesus says in the Gospels is authentic?

    It is the Historical Method,which has several criterions for discovering what really happened in history,or at least,what most probably happened:

    1.The criterion of dissimilarity

    2.That of early attestation

    3.That of multiple attestation

    4.That of enemy attestation

    5.That of embarrassing attestion(like the 30 plus counter-propaganda passages I showed,which are also more or less early,the vast majority before 61 AD)

    So there 3 kinds of sayings in the 4 gospels that are from Jesus or are probably by him:

    The Son of Man sayings:

    Here is the criterion of dissimilarity(the Christian writers,not even Paul,call Jesus with that title),and the criterion of multiple attestation,early attestation.

    The “I say to you” sayings:

    Jewish teachers said “It is written(in Scripture)” but not “I say to you”,which means “I tell you on my authority”.

    The “Kingdom of God” sayings:

    Scholars believed it was a central message of Jesus,announcing the coming Messianic age,or rule of God on earth,”the Kingdom of God”.

    Like

  30. To Jason:

    You said:

    “Again, I’m not trying to be insensitive to my fellow Christians, but I would argue that there is a ton of myth making in all of the Gospel accounts………………………………..If anybody has any suggestions or books they would recommend to help shed light Christian/Jew/Muslim, please help a brother out.​”
    And also:​
    “But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)”

    To continue to try to answer you about the reliability of the gospels:

    Two books to check out to see if the gospel information on Jesus is legend or if it is the C.S. Lewis Trilemma of:

    Lord,Lunatic or Liar

    are Brant Pitre’s “The Case for Jesus”(2016) and chapter 2 (“The Bible’s Portrait of Jesus Can’t be Trusted because the Church Tampered with the Text” and chapter 4(“Christianity’s Beliefs about Jesus were copied from Pagan Religions”) in “The Case for the Real Jesus”(2007)by Lee Strobel.

    A.Are the gospels lying when they say Jesus healed people?

    The answer is even very,very liberal NT scholars say Jesus really did something that seemed miraculous,the gospels are based on a basic historicity here.

    There was a Russian huckster called Rasputin(1869-1916) who pretended to be a holy man and who had amazing hypnotic powers.

    Both believers and his enemies have written that his eyes had an astonishing hypnotic power.Rasputin loved to drink and use his power to sleep with women,but he was not greedy,he didn’t care about money,and gave much to poor people.

    He was also a Russian patriot who tried to use his influence with the Tsar,Nicholas II, to prevent Russia from participating in WW I,he knew it would kill many poor,ordinary Russians.

    For several years Rasputin was able to stop the bleeding and pain of the Tsar’s son,Alexis,who had hemophilia.The Empress believed in Rasputin,in this article,it is a case of the power of the mind:

    http://petersburgcity.com/news/city/2004/08/13/rasputin_tsarevich_alexey/

    The article says:

    “The study says that stable and positive emotional state of the mother reduces the number of spontaneous bleedings in their hemophiliac sons. Tsarevich Alexei is cited as an example.
    “All archive material shows that Tsarevich Alexei suffered from a severe form of hemophilia,” Danilov wrote. “As Pierre Gilliard witnessed, the empress was frustrated to see the boy’s bleedings, and Dr. Botkin appeared helpless,

    and only Rasputin’s entrances coincided with improvements of the boy’s condition.

    But the royal family had an incredible faith in Rasputin, so they were all always relieved to see him.”

    As Danilov explains, it is well known that hypnosis narrows minor arteries. As a person calms down, the blood circulation slows down, and vice versa.

    “As Rasputin was entering the tsarevich’s room, he was confidence personified;

    he would say loudly that the pain would soon go and the boy trusted him,”

    Danilov said. “Positive emotions reduced the bleedings, the boy was falling asleep, and the bleedings eventually stopped.”

    There is a super-skeptical NT group of scholars:Protestants,Catholics,atheists,Jews,called the Jesus Seminar(founded in 1985 by Robert Funk,atheist,ex-Christian).

    They were 150 before,now are like 75.One of their members used to be Robert Price,atheist,ex-Christian,and John Dominic Crossan,ex-Catholic priest,who now says Jesus never existed.

    http://christiananswers.net/q-eden/edn-t017.html

    The Jesus Seminar says in “The Five Gospels: What Did Jesus Really Say?” (1993),where they accept the Gospel of Thomas(written after 175 AD,but which they think is from the 1st century) as the 5th gospel.

    They took 6 years to write the book and classified the sayings of Jesus by color:

    red means Jesus said it;

    pink means it’s close to what He said;

    gray means He didn’t say it in this form but there are echoes of His teaching in it;

    and black means the saying didn’t come from Him at all.

    Only 20% of the sayings were chosen as being red and pink.But 20% is still a lot of sayings:

    90 sayings in total:15 sayings are red and 75 sayings are pink.

    The Jesus Seminar scholars believe Jesus did psychosomatic miracles,not nature miracles(resurrecting Lazarus,calming a storm,walking on water).

    John Dominic Crossan said in “The Historical Jesus:The Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant”(1991,page 332):

    “Jesus was both an exorcist and a healer.”

    Robert Funk and in fact the Jesus Seminar itself,in the book “The Acts of Jesus:What did Jesus Really Do?” by “Robert Funk and the Jesus Seminar”(1998,page 527)

    make a list of the “basic facts” about Jesus and among them say that he was a “charismatic healer and exorcist”.

    Marcus Borg,a prominent member,said:

    “Despite the difficulty which miracles pose for the modern mind,on historical grounds it is virtually indisputable that Jesus was a healer and exorcist.”(“Jesus,A Nw Vision:Spirit,Culture,and the Life of Discipleship”(1991,page 61)

    Borg and the others of the Jesus Seminar don’t mean real healings,but that Jesus healed the conversion disorders(the symptoms associated with real illnesses) or in other cases Jesus healed psychosomatic disorders(when you are healthy,but for psychological reasons feel sick,and it affects your body).

    A modern example is that of a UK teenager who had the condition called reptilian skin(ichthyosis)in his arm,and saw a doctor,who used suggestion to try to help him.

    The boy believed it,and in the next few weeks his skin became,in most of the arm,normal.Something that shouldn’t have happened,the power of the mind.The case of told in Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ”.

    Rudolf Bultmann(1884-1976),German,and he is huge,maybe the most important liberal NT scholar of the 20th century wrote in “Jesus and the Word”(1958,page 124):

    “There can be no doubt that Jesus the kinds of deeds which were miracles to his mind and to the minds of his contemporaries”.

    Another example of the power of the mind is the case of Norman Cousins,who is famous for the Hiroshima maidens event in 1955(25 girls whose faces had been ruined in 1945 because of the atomic bomb).

    Cousins had a terrible disease,of which he cured himself through laughter and positive thinking(the power of the mind),he recorded it in his book:”Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient”(1979).

    B.Did the early Christians have the habit of inventing sayings of Jesus to settle disputes,situations?

    Paul in his famous 1 Corinthians epistle,and he was a leading leader,shows us that it was not acceptable.First Corinthians is famous for having the 1 Corinthians 15:3-7 creed,and stating the oral tradition of the New Covenant saying of Jesus at the Last Supper(1 Corinthians 11).

    It is also famous for chapter 7,where Paul explicitly states what part of his teaching is his own opinion,not Jesus'(the Lord’s):

    1 Corinthians 7:10-40

    “To the married I give charge,

    not I but the Lord,

    that the wife should not separate from her husband,but if she does, let her remain single or else be reconciled to her husband,and that the husband should not divorce his wife.

    To the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her………………… Now concerning the unmarried,

    I have no command of the Lord,

    but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy.I think that in view of the present distress it is well for a person to remain as he is…………………..A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If the husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.

    But in my judgment she is happier if she remains as she is. And I think that I have the Spirit of God.”

    Like

  31. To Jason:

    You said:

    “Again, I’m not trying to be insensitive to my fellow Christians, but I would argue that there is a ton of myth making in all of the Gospel accounts………………………………..If anybody has any suggestions or books they would recommend to help shed light Christian/Jew/Muslim, please help a brother out.​”
    And also:​
    “But those are issues I myself struggle with. WHY WOULD CHRISTIANS TAMPER WITH THE TEXT IF IT WAS THE INSPIRED WORD OF GOD! (not yelling, just using the caps for emphasis and my personal frustration)”

    To continue to try to answer you about the reliability of the gospels:

    C.Did the writers of the gospels intend to write history,biographies,according to the standards of antiquity?

    Yes. In 1986 scholar Charles Talbert wrote “What is a Gospel?”,where he argued the 4 gospels were written as real biographies,according to antiquity.Classicist scholar Richard Burridge read it,and disagreed,decided to write a book to disprove it,but due to his research,came to the exact conclusion.

    Burridge’s idea is now accepted by most NT scholars.He wrote “What are the Gospels?A Comparison with Greco-Roman Biography”(1992).He compared all the known biographies in Greek and Latin before and after Jesus.

    His findings:

    1.Ancient biographies often average between 10,000 and 20,000 words in length.

    2.Ancient biographies often begin with ancestry.

    3.They don’t say everything about a person.

    4.They focus on the life and death of a single person

    D.Do variants in the NT really matter?

    There are from 200,000 to maybe 400,000 variants,of which the vast majority are of no importance at all:being spelling errors(70-80%),grammatical errors,nonsense errors,

    variants including synonyms(“Jesus said” or “the Lord said”).

    The early Christian writers quoted from the NT many times,that is another way to see if a scribe changed a passage.It is verification using a non-NT text.

    Only 50 passages in the NT(I don’t know how many in the gospels) have variants that are significant.

    But none of these 50 different passages affect any Christian doctrine:none say “Jesus was NOT the Messiah” or “There is NO God” or “Jesus did NOT resurrect”.

    In many NT’s at the bottom you can see footnotes that show the variant texts,say a passage has 3 variants(imaginary example):

    “Jesus went to Galilee”

    “He went to Galilee with his disciples”

    “Jesus decided to go to Galilee,and the apostle also”.

    Scholars believe we have the original text,but we don’t know which exactly,but it is one of the 3 variants.And none affect doctrine.

    Usually the shorter variant is more probable to be the original text.Sometimes not,in one variant,instead of “Barabbas” it is “Jesus Barabbas”. Scholars think the original text said “Jesus Barabbas”,but scribes disliked it,since he was a bad Jesus,so intentionally didn’t copy it.

    E.But doesn’t having only complete copies of the gospels that are late mean that we can’t be reasonably sure that real corruption happened before?

    It is true,the complete copies of the gospels are late:

    A 90% copy of John is from 180-200 AD (P 66,papyrus 66)

    Luke and John are almost entirely copied in P 75,a book with those 2 gospels(late 200s-early 300s)

    A complete copy of Mark and Matthew are,I think,from the early 300s.

    So corruption could have happened in between,from 50-70 AD till more than 200 years later.

    But if a lot of scribes felt like changing

    to make Jesus and the disciples look better,

    how did those 30 plus embarrassing and very embarrassing passages I showed before ever survive 200 plus years of corruption?

    F.Specially this very embarassing passage:

    Jesus said:”This generation will not pass until all these things have happened.”:Mark 13:30,Matthew 24:34,Luke 21:32(for me ,this is the supreme example the scribes were faithful in copying)

    It is about the 2nd Coming of Jesus,he said the Temple of Jerusalem would be destroyed and he,Jesus,would return in glory in “this generation”.

    Q is a collection of 50 sayings of Jesus,found in Matthew and Luke,but absent in Mark,written around 50 AD.One of the sayings is a prophecy by Jesus:

    Luke 13:34-35/Matthew 23:37-38

    ““Jerusalem, Jerusalem! You kill the prophets and stone to death those who are sent to you. Many times I wanted to gather your people as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not let me.

    Now your house is left completely empty. I tell you(Jerusalem),

    you(Jerusalem)

    will not see me(Jesus) until that time

    when you will say(Psalm 118:26), ‘God bless the One who comes in the name of the Lord.’””(in other words,accepts Jesus as Messiah)

    In the gospels Jesus quotes Psalm 118:22: “The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone.” and says it is about himself.

    He quotes it after saying the Parable of the Tenants(Matthew 21:28-46; Mark 12:1-12; Luke 20:9-19) This parable is about the death of Jesus,the Messiah and:

    The landowner – represents God
    The vineyard – His Kingdom
    The tenants – specifically Israel’s religious leaders
    The servants – God’s prophets
    The beloved son – Jesus
    There are various ways to explain the “this generation” problem but the best one is this:

    a)In the Q saying quoted Jesus puts a CONDITION for his 2nd Coming:that he be accepted by Jerusalem as Messiah.

    b)The “this generation” prophecy is dependent on that condition.

    c)A generation in the Bible is 40 years:the number 40 appears more than 20 times in the Bible:40 days,40 years,40 lashes,etc.

    d)Jesus died in 30 AD. So 30 AD plus 40 years= 70 AD(the year the Temple was destroyed)

    Jesus gave Jerusalem 40 years time to accept him as the Messiah.

    e)A boy and girl became adults at age 14(or maybe 12) then,so “this generation” in Jesus’ prophecy was all from 14 years old and up.

    f)90% of people then were dead by age 40(this is in a book by John Dominic Crossan),but since an adult began at age 14,by 70 AD there would still be a few who would be 54.

    G.There is external evidence about this 40 year trial period of Jerusalem

    There are 2 Talmuds,the earlier Jerusalem Talmud,and the Babylon Talmud(the one used today).

    They were written late,the Jerusalem Talmud is from 400 AD(final redaction) and the Babylonian Talmud from 500 AD(final redaction).

    The Jewish rabbis had no reason to invent things that would favor Jesus.The most holy Jewish day is Yom Kippus”Day of Atonement”,when once a year the Hight Priest would make a sacrifice to atone for the sins of the Jewish people.

    The priests would use certain techniques to know if God approved or not the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    And both Talmuds report that for 40 years before the destruction fo the Temple,the signs were that God REJECTED the Yom Kippur sacrifice.

    http://www3.telus.net/public/kstam/en/temple/details/evidence.htm

    We read in the Jerusalem Talmud:
    “Forty years before the destruction of the Temple,

    the western light went out, the crimson thread remained crimson,

    and the lot for the Lord ALWAYS came up in the left hand(sign God rejected the Yom Kippur sacrifice).

    They would close the gates of the Temple by night and get up in the morning and find them wide open” (Jacob Neusner, The Yerushalmi, p.156-157). [the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE]
    A similar passage in the Babylonian Talmud states:
    “Our rabbis taught:

    During the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple

    the lot [‘For the Lord’] did not come up in the right hand;

    nor did the crimson-colored strap become white; nor did the western most light shine; and the doors of the Hekel [Temple] would open by themselves” (Soncino version, Yoma 39b).

    What is the way historians try to determine if what Jesus says in the Gospels is authentic?

    It is the Historical Method,which has several criterions for discovering what really happened in history,or at least,what most probably happened:

    1.The criterion of dissimilarity

    2.That of early attestation

    3.That of multiple attestation

    4.That of enemy attestation

    5.That of embarrassing attestion(like the 30 plus counter-propaganda passages I showed,which are also more or less early,the vast majority before 61 AD)

    So there 3 kinds of sayings in the 4 gospels that are from Jesus or are probably by him:

    The Son of Man sayings:

    Here is the criterion of dissimilarity(the Christian writers,not even Paul,call Jesus with that title),and the criterion of multiple attestation,early attestation.

    The “I say to you” sayings:

    Jewish teachers said “It is written(in Scripture)” but not “I say to you”,which means “I tell you on my authority”.

    The “Kingdom of God” sayings:

    Scholars believed it was a central message of Jesus,announcing the coming Messianic age,or rule of God on earth,”the Kingdom of God”.

    Like

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