Eyewitnesses and the Gospels

QUESTION

One of the major points of your work (if I understand correctly) is that the contents of the New Testament are at a vast remove in time, place, and source from any eyewitness account of Jesus’ life. But when I consider this point in my ignorance, and simply from the perspective of chronology (from the time of Jesus to the accounts in the earliest gospels), it seems to me that at least one very old eyewitness of Jesus’ life might have been able to report a significant amount of information about Jesus and his teachings directly to, say, Mark. In view of this, I wonder how scholars know that no New Testament account of Jesus could have been received directly from any eyewitness.

RESPONSE

It’s a very good question, and one that I get asked, in a variety of ways, a lot. My view is this: when Mark was writing his Gospel (the first to be written) in say 65 or 70 CE, there probably were indeed people still living who were familiar with Jesus. At least I would assume that Mark himself thought so. Otherwise it is hard to explain why he included what is now Mark 9:1, where Jesus tells his disciples “Truly I tell you, some of you standing here will not taste death before they see that the Kingdom of God has come in power.” If everyone from the first generation had already died, then it seems implausible that Mark would leave a saying of Jesus indicating that the End would come before they all died. (I do not, by the way, think that Mark’s Jesus was referring to the day of Pentecost, to the coming of the church, or even to his own Transfiguration, as some interpreters claim, in order to get around the fact that Jesus declared that the end would come before all the disciples died when, in fact, it did not).

But onto my point. Even though there may well have been eyewitnesses alive some 35-40 years after Jesus’ death, there is no guarantee – or, I would argue, no reason to think – that any of them were consulted by the authors of the Gospels when writing their accounts. The eyewitnesses would have been Aramaic speaking peasants almost entirely from rural Galilee. Mark was a highly educated, Greek speaking Christian living in an urban area outside of Palestine (Rome?), who never traveled, probably, to Galilee. So the existence of eyewitnesses would not have much if any effect on his Gospel.

The same is true, even more so, with the later Gospels. Luke begins his Gospel by saying that eyewitnesses started passing along the oral traditions he had heard (Luke 1:1-4), but he never indicates that he had ever talked to one. He has simply heard stories that had been around from the days of the eyewitnesses. And if the standard dating of his Gospel – and Matthew’s – is correct, they were writing about 50 years or more after Jesus’ death. John’s Gospel was even later.

My sense is that most of the eyewitnesses (and who knows how many there were?! Hundreds? Probably not. Dozens?) had died before the Gospels were written; those that survived were carrying on their lives in rural Galilee or Jerusalem. And the Gospel writers, who never say they consulted any of them, probably never did consult with any of them. The Gospels are based on oral traditions that had been in circulation – and changed as a result – for decades before the Gospel writers had even heard them.

And as anyone knows who has been subject to oral traditions – this would include all of us – the stories told about a person can change absolutely overnight! It happens all the time. What happens, then, to stories in circulation for 40 or 50 years, in different countries, told in different languages, among people who never laid an eye on an eyewitness or on anyone else who had? My sense is that the stories get changed, often a lot; and many of the stories simply get made up. It’s just the way it happens And it can be shown to have happened with the Gospels, since the same story is often told in very different ways. Every historian will tell you: evidence matters!

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Categories: Bart Ehrman, Bible, Biblical scholarship, Christianity, Jesus, Judaism

64 replies

  1. Before I clicked on this link, I said to myself: “I bet Bart Ehrmans name will come up.” Surely enough….

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  2. The Quran got it right centuries before modern bible research. “And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption.”

    If you read the accounts of perhaps the main event in christian faith the crucifixion, you immediately see that it’s not based on eyewitness accounts but on conjecture.

    There are so many strange things with the crucifixion account that make you wonder whether it was written in response to accounts that claimed that Jesus didn’t get crucified. That’s why they weaved in and countered events that suggest that Jesus escaped death. For instance, the strange coincidence of there just happening to be a captive named Jesus Bar Abbas and that there was this unhistoric tradition of freeing captives on the request of the mob.

    Another thing if Jesus came to suffer and die for our sins, why on earth did he only hang 3 hours on the cross while it normally took days for people to die.

    Liked by 2 people

    • According to scholarship the quran gets it wrong on the crucifixion – only cranks believe that jesus was not crucified, which NT scholars believe that someone else was crucified in place of jesus.

      Also, which scholars believe that jesus talking at birth, forming clay animals and breathing life into them, and jesus telling allah that he did not tell people to worship him, are authenticated history?

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    • heathcliff

      Imbecile!! Richard Carrier??!!! LOL!!!

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    • hey piggy, how do nt scholars know what jesus said on the cross when they admit the following :

      Bart April 9, 2017
      I think just about everyone connected with Jesus had fled town and weren’t there, and so had no idea. And I don’t think dozens of others knew where he was buried, any more than they knew where the other two crucified that morning were buried, except to say that it was probably in whatever pit they threw crucified victims after their bodies had decomposed for some days.

      1. fled town
      2. ehrman knows crucifixion took place because dozens were crucified

      Bart April 10, 2017
      My sense is that no one was generally watching what happened to crucified victims. You *could* say dozens saw it; or you could say thousands did! My hunch is that no one paid attention since it was a common event. (We have to force ourselves from assuming that since it was Jesus, after all, lots of people were interested)

      hey pig, how do nt scholars know what jesus said? did he say what mark said, did he say what luke said?
      ehrman is ADMITTING that no CAMERA was on jesus. so how did the nt writers KNOW WHAT the hell jesus said on the cross? those people wouldn’t even know they were CRUCIFYING a jesus because jesus ACCORDING to testimony of ehrman WAS AN UNKNOWN peasant.

      how did they know what jesus UTTERED on the cross?

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  3. The more I read about other religious traditions the more I appreciate Islam.

    Mark( whoever he was) had this narrow time window to search out the desciples , the family of Jesus or their direct descendants , and he didn’t make a good job of it am sorry to say.

    Whatever reservation one may have about the science of Hadith, one has to appreciate the genius of early Islamic scholars who constructed a system which is akin to the historical critical method of today.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thanks. This is a great post because it so clearly demonstrates Ehrman’s liberal assumptions and exegetical skills.

    1. It is very important for liberal academics that Jesus predicted that he would return within the lifetime of his disciples. Ehrman refers to Mark 9:1 for this. This is used to create a historical context for dating the gospels and other issues. The problem is Mark 13:32 says Jesus does NOT know the hour of his return. Therefore it is impossible for him in 9:1 to say when his return will be. Reading 9:1 in the context of the Mark and the NT, it refers to Jesus ascension and seating at the right hand of God. It is saying Jesus is Lord. This idea is just everywhere. Jesus has brought the resurrection kingdom by being the resurrected king. The kingdom has come in power. Ehrman simply does not read the books he comments on.

    2. > The eyewitnesses would have been Aramaic speaking peasants almost entirely from rural Galilee.

    Prove it! This whole paragraph is such conjecture. There is not a shred of evidence.

    3. > The same is true, even more so, with the later Gospels. Luke begins his Gospel by saying that eyewitnesses started passing along the oral traditions he had heard (Luke 1:1-4), but he never indicates that he had ever talked to one.

    This is simply false. Here is what Luke writes:

    Luk 1:1 Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us,
    Luk 1:2 just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word.

    He explicitly says what he has written comes from the eyewitnesses and servants of the word. When you read Luke-Acts “witness” and the service of the word is how the apostles of Jesus are described and Luke worked with these men. Luke does not say he is passing on oral traditions from others. Ehrman is simply not reading the books he talks about.

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    • What a pathetic reply!

      Jesus may not have known the EXACT hour, but there is no doubt that he believed (at least according to the NT) it would occur at some point within the lifetime of his disciples.

      The early church expected the world to end very soon. Jesus even is made to say “I am coming soon” in Revelation. But here we are 2000 years later and still no end in sight. Two millennia is not my idea of “soon”.

      Liked by 1 person

    • quranandbibleblog

      > Jesus may not have known the EXACT hour,

      He can only say it would be in their generation if he knew the day. Jesus makes it very clear he does not know. Therefore he cannot be saying his return is within a particular time.

      Mark 9:1 is about the resurrection kingdom. Throughout the NT Jesus is said to be ruling from the right hand of God NOW. This happened during the lifetime of the disciples.

      > but there is no doubt that he believed (at least according to the NT) it would occur at some point within the lifetime of his disciples.

      Where is your evidence?

      > The early church expected the world to end very soon.

      Every generation of Christians believes this. Jesus said we are to always keep watch and be ready. Believing in his return is how we stay ready.

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    • He can only say it would be in their generation if he knew the day. Jesus makes it very clear he does not know. Therefore he cannot be saying his return is within a particular time.

      Mark 9:1 is about the resurrection kingdom. Throughout the NT Jesus is said to be ruling from the right hand of God NOW. This happened during the lifetime of the disciples.”

      mark 13

      “This is but the beginning of the birth pangs.”
      “But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”
      “then those in Judea must flee to the mountains; 15 the one on the housetop must not go down or enter the house to take anything away”
      “Pray that it may not be in winter”

      “But in those days, after that suffering,”
      “Then they will see ‘the son of man coming in clouds’ with great power and glory”

      “So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he[e] is near, at the very gates.”

      ” Therefore, keep awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or at dawn, 36 or else he may find you asleep when he comes suddenly. 37 And what I say to you I say to all: Keep awake.”

      this is the prophecy of falsehood.
      the immediacy is so obvious .

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    • Every generation of Christians believes this.”

      its funny they dont run off to the mountains or pray that their departure is not in winter or go to countries where christians are being “persecuted” and “endure till the end”

      you christians in the west have given up on your gods instructions. nowadays its with gold crosses and living in nicely done up houses etc .

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  5. “He explicitly says what he has written comes from the eyewitnesses and servants of the word. When you read Luke-Acts “witness” and the service of the word is how the apostles of Jesus are described and Luke worked with these men. Luke does not say he is passing on oral traditions from others. Ehrman is simply not reading the books he talks about.”

    Paul and Silas in Prison
    16 Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 18 She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.

    19 When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities. 20 They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar 21 by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.”

    22 The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. 23 After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24 When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.

    25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. 27 The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. 28 But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

    why weren’t the “we” ATTACKED and only two persons singled out if “we” was present ?

    if luke was really part of the “we” shouldn’t he have at least mentioned about how he OR WE got attacked?

    OR HOW WE SAW how the attack took place even though we did not get attacked ?

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  6. Samuel Green wrote:

    Reading 9:1 in the context of the Mark and the NT, it refers to Jesus ascension and seating at the right hand of God. It is saying Jesus is Lord. This idea is just everywhere. Jesus has brought the resurrection kingdom by being the resurrected king. The kingdom has come in power. Ehrman simply does not read the books he comments on.

    Amen! Excellent.

    Mark 14:60-64 and Jesus quoting of Daniel 7:13-14 and Psalm 110:1 proves this.

    Jesus is ruling now ever since His ascension to heave and session at the right hand of the Father.

    Revelation chapters 4 and 5 also show this. They worshipped the Father and the lamb (2 persons of the 3 person Trinity – ONE God.)

    You Muslims should read the New Testament from beginning to end and see the whole thing, also praying at the same time with a submissive heart, “God, show the way” (Psalm 25); and stop reading liberals and agnostics and agnostics and stop only reading verses that Muslim polemics quote.

    You need a mediator who has paid the price and satisfied justice for your sins.
    Al Masih is at the right hand of God the Father praying for His people (true believers – born again Christians).

    see Romans 8 and Hebrews chapters 7, 8, 9, 10

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    • “Mark 14:60-64 and Jesus quoting of Daniel 7:13-14 and Psalm 110:1 proves this.

      Jesus is ruling now ever since His ascension to heave and session at the right hand of the Father.”

      no wonder mark has no appearances of jesus, he thought that the jesus already disappeared. “going to galilee” cannot be literal just as “you will see the son of man riding on clouds…” cannot be literal both are non-literal.

      mark attributes many miracles and describes things which no one is a witness too, but right at the end there is no description of ANYONE seeing jesus in galilee.

      or they are literal and jesus really did think he would come back in the flesh just like he thought he was going to go to galilee in the flesh.

      https://heath2017.imgur.com/all/?third_party=1

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    • Mark 16:19 – “Jesus was received up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God.”

      This is quoted in Irenaeus around 180-200 AD, so it is older than Codex Siniaticus and Vaticanus and indicates that at least some of Mark 16:9-20 is authentic and older. (including Jesus’ bodily appearances) The only problem is the picking up deadly snakes verse, etc.)

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    • “This is quoted in Irenaeus around 180-200 AD, so it is older than Codex Siniaticus and Vaticanus and indicates that at least some of Mark 16:9-20 is authentic and older. (including Jesus’ bodily appearances) The only problem is the picking up deadly snakes verse, etc.)”

      . if you want to go older go to the gospel of matthew, he reverses what the women do in mark, not only that someone interpolated matthew and put in a jesus appearance when the women run away from the tomb. jesus simply parrots what the angel already said.

      why do you need church fathers when matthew is earliest witness against it?

      “”This is quoted in Irenaeus around 180-200 AD, so it is older than Codex Siniaticus and Vaticanus and indicates that at least some of Mark 16:9-20 is authentic and older”

      how does irenaus know that SOME of 16:9-20 is older? just because he quoted something which resembled 16:9-20 ? this gives you allowance to put two and two together?

      because something is OLDER it means it must DEFINITELY have been at the end of mark?

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    • Ken said
      “You need a mediator who has paid the price and satisfied justice for your sins”
      But your bible says
      For there is ONE God and ONE mediator between God and mankind, the MAN Christ Jesus.

      Ken said :
      “They worshipped the Father and the lamb (2 persons of the 3 person Trinity – ONE God.)”

      Quran answerers
      “And [mention, O Muhammad], the Day We will gather them all together; then We will say to those who associated others with Allah, “Where are your ‘partners’ that you used to claim [with Him]?
      Then there will be no [excuse upon] examination except they will say, “By Allah, our Lord, we were not those who associated.
      See how they will lie about themselves. And lost from them will be what they used to invent. QT 6:22-24

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    • Qur’an 6:22-24 carries no authority or weight, since it is just a human book created 600 later after Divine Revelation ceased.

      Besides One God in three persons is not even shirk.

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    • Ken said
      “carries no authority or weight”

      Quran answers
      “But Allah bears witness to that which He has revealed to you. He has sent it down with His knowledge, and the angels bear witness [as well]. And sufficient is Allah as Witness.” QT 4

      “Say, “Have you considered: if the Qur’an is from Allah and you disbelieved in it, who would be more astray than one who is in extreme dissension?”
      We will show them Our signs in the horizons and within themselves until it becomes clear to them that it is the truth. But is it not sufficient concerning your Lord that He is, over all things, a Witness?” QT41

      ================
      Your Fully God says
      “If I alone bear witness about myself, my testimony is not true.”!

      If your God’s testimony to himself is nothing, why do you think we should believe in your false prophet paul and his words to be taken as the words of God while we know that he even didn’t dare to claim that in the from of true Jesus’ disciples ?

      I mean if this your standard, do you think we would take your statement about “weight” seriously ? 😴

      ==========

      “Besides One God in three persons is not even shirk.”

      QT
      “See how they will lie about themselves. And lost from them will be what they used to invent. “

      Liked by 1 person

    • the prophesy you speak of sounds like Dabiq and Isis type stuff.

      There are no more “Romans” and there is no more “Constantinople” (it is now Istanbul and has totally changed since 1453)

      https://sunnah.com/muslim/54/44

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    • You took Jesus’ words out of context. Read all of John chapter 5 and you can see that what He means is that if He just showed up as a one man claiming to be a prophet/Son of God, WITHOUT also the witness of the Father, Moses, John the Baptist, and His works, He would be just one man claiming something. But all those other witnesses prove He is the eternal Son/Word and God the Son and Son of God, Messiah, Savior, etc.

      He was guarding against when what your false prophet Muhammad did – he is just one man with a false claim and no witnesses as to his truthfulness – he is all by himself.

      Paul was an apostle of jesus Al Masih and wrote inspired books and so is the book of Hebrews, as is all of the 27 books of the NT. 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 3:16 – Peter calls all of Paul’s letters “Scripture”. With John 17:8; 17:17; 14:26; 16:12-13; Jude 3; 2 Peter 1:19-21 – shows all of NT inspired.

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    • “Besides One God in three persons is not even shirk.”

      yhwh who is NOT yhwh is MEDIATING between himself and himself

      what have you done to the word “mediate” you have wrecked what it means

      yhwh is a person who has FULL experiential knowledge/feeling of the center god which means yhwh

      “divine by nature” /yhwh IS not yhwh/divine by nature

      you have 2 gods DOING shirk with each other

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    • “Besides One God in three persons is not even shirk.”

      before you said 3 persons IN one god

      now you are saying the one god is something OVER 3 persons

      you see your shirky language is not even consistent because church father inventions are causing you to trip all the time

      you can partner to the father who has FULL EXPERIENTIAL KNOWLEDGE of the CENTER god, which is SHIRKH THROUGH AND THROUGH

      you literally worship TRIPLETS.

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    • God is one.
      الله واحد

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    • yahu are three/triplets

      you worship triplets ken

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    • Yahweh is ONE God, eternally existing in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

      God is Love.
      الله محبت

      عاشق / حبیب (Lover – spiritually) – Father
      معشوق/ محبوب (beloved – spiritual) – Son
      عشق / محبت (love – spiritual) – Holy Spirit

      “God is Love” – I John 4:8 points to an eternal loving relationship, because God is relationship. Wonderful truth.

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    • Jesus for you and according to his alleged message is fully God, yet his testimony is false for himself ! What a religion! 🙂

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    • The eternal Son took on a human nature and body and became human. So, when a man comes on the scene, and make those big claims, they better have more than just a claim to back it up. Jesus backed up by His perfect character and miracles AND the testimony of the Father, Moses, John the Baptist, Jesus’ good works; – His character and sinlessness above all.

      Although some Christians and many nominal cultural Christians did wrong things later in history; Jesus was pure and no one can convict Him of wrongdoing. John 8:43-47
      He is worthy.

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    • So bad….So bad, Ken.
      This is the result of following satan,hawa,and men whom you don’t even know!

      “Never would the Messiah disdain to be a servant of Allah, nor would the angels near [to Him]. And whoever disdains His worship and is arrogant – He will gather them to Himself all together.
      And as for those who believed and did righteous deeds, He will give them in full their rewards and grant them extra from His bounty. But as for those who disdained and were arrogant, He will punish them with a painful punishment, and they will not find for themselves besides Allah any protector or helper.
      O mankind, there has come to you a conclusive proof from your Lord, and We have sent down to you a clear light.” QT

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    • Your Qur’an forces you to respect the Bible, but the Bible tells us it is the final revelation.
      Jude 3
      the faith was once for all time delivered to the saints

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    • “Your Qur’an forces you to respect the Bible”
      It’s a lie invented by the clown, which I’ve told you many times it’s really a disaster for you in the real apologetic filed.
      You need to know Quranic terminology. Protestant bible has never been mentioned in Quran.

      But I believe in all my heart in the Torah & Injeel which were revealed to Moses and Jesus peac be upon them.

      Abdullah ibn Salam, Salman Al farsi, Warqah ibn Nawfal, Asmahah, Wahb ibn Munabbih, and Ka’ab Al Ahbar and many others, all of them believed in the prophet ﷺ and his message because of what they had ( i.e the real knowledge about the true Torah and Injeel)

      “Those to whom We gave the Scripture before it – they are believers in it
      And when it is recited to them, they say, “We have believed in it; indeed, it is the truth from our Lord. Indeed we were, [even] before it, Muslims [submitting to Allah ].
      Those will be given their reward twice for what they patiently endured and [because] they avert evil through good, and from what We have provided them they spend.” QT

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    • Yes it is, the Protestant Bible is the same as in Luke 24:44 (Torah, Psalms (Poetry books), and Prophets), and Luke 11:51 (from the Blood of Abel (Genesis) to the blood of Zechariah ( Chronicles, the last book in the Hebrew Bible, the Tanakh) along with the Injeel, the NT is the true and original Injeel.

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    • Qur’an 5:47 and 10:94 proves you are wrong.

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    • If you mean “clown” = David Wood, I am sorry for you, for many Christians pointed this truth out long before David Wood started witnessing to Muslims – I knew this before David Wood, as I was witnessing to Muslims since 1983.

      Mizal Al Haqq by Carl Pfander pointed this out a long time ago. (1800s) Also Samuel Zwemer. (early 1900s)

      https://archive.org/details/mizanulhaqqorba00pfangoog

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    • Quran 5:47 proves that you’re ignorant of Quran and the Arabic style of Quran.
      Don’t be a parrot repeating what the clown says.

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    • Mizan Al Haqq
      میزان الحق
      “The Balance of Truth”

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    • He is right on that issue.

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    • Rather’s he’s more than ignorant in this issues and in many stuff he presents.
      Why don’t you just admit that you don’t bother to read for those who refute him?
      Just read the verses that I’ve posted in the previous comments to know how ignorant you & the clown are.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Devastating responses brothers Abdullah and Heath!

      Brother Abdullah, I would add that Ken is just as much a clown as his hero David. We have all seen his antics.

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  7. Jesus predicted the destruction of the temple in Mark 13 and Matthew 24 and Luke 21, and it came true. Jesus spoke it a few days before His crucifixion in 30 AD; and 40 years later, the temple was destroyed.

    Mark wrote around 45-55 AD maybe up to 60; and Matthew 50-60 AD and Luke 61-62 AD.

    Amazing accuracy!

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    • “Jesus predicted the destruction of the temple in Mark 13 and Matthew 24 and Luke 21, and it came true. Jesus spoke it a few days before His crucifixion in 30 AD; and 40 years later, the temple was destroyed.

      Mark wrote around 45-55 AD maybe up to 60; and Matthew 50-60 AD and Luke 61-62 AD.

      Amazing accuracy!”

      which is just reinforcing the fact that he saw things Literally . all of mark 13 was going to happen soon in time.

      as for “prophecy” after you read this and how christians have FIDDLED with these texts , you will no longer trust anything in mark, matthew or luke

      quote :

      How were these texts composed, when, and with what narrative constructions in mind? Was this originally a vocal/oral narrative? If so, how much had that original performance changed in its telling prior to someone writing it down? What was added between its performance form and its written form? Did it start as just a passion play or did it evolve into that? Did the original narrative contain an infancy or birth narrative that is now lost from our version of Mark (probably not, but who knows)? Without answers to these questions, all dating is tentative and even textually it is impossible to know how late or early our Gospels are (though there are many tentative arguments).

      As an example to the above, Mark 13 is used often to date Mark after (or before, depending on your particular theological beliefs) the fall of the Temple since he “predicts” the fall (the argument goes: Mark must have written this in after the destruction of the Temple, after 70 CE, to give Jesus credibility as a prophet). But parts of Mark 13 have already been altered in the manuscript evidence (e.g., 13.14), and our earliest copy of this passage comes to us via the Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus, dated to the 4th Century (so far as I’m aware). between the time the Gospel of Mark is alleged to have been written to the time we have our earliest extant attestation to this verse, we have roughly 250 years or more. To put that into context, that is almost as long as we have had the Declaration of Independence (approx. 237 years). Between that time there had existed hundreds of competing theologies, vying for a chance to win out over the others. Establishing ones theological framework using texts seemed to have been a common motif during this period, and what better way than to have your variant having a Jesus portrayed as foretelling events. I’m not saying this is certain, or even probable, but it is likely and with no means to compare it to an original how can one use this as a definitive dating of the composition of a Markan Gospel? Certainly we can say, “After 70 CE is when this variant of the text originated” but can we really say that ‘Mark composed his Gospel immediately after 70CE’? I’m not so sure. Even if this fragment were original to the text, there may be a relative function to it (i.e., Jesus may not be predicting the fall of the current Temple but repeating an ancient motif relating to Solomon’s Temple–a thematic element commonly found in the Hebrew Bible). Again, this may be why using TC to date may simply be a waste of one’s time

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    • “Jesus predicted the destruction of the temple in Mark 13 and Matthew 24 and Luke 21, and it came true”

      jesus and the bible says that EVEN FALSE prophets could make accurate predictions. praise the lord!
      the point is that the temple destruction would trigger of other things in which would cause son of man to rescue the elect. 2500+ years and jesus is CONFIRMED false prophet

      christians have KILLED, MURDERED, DESTROYED peoples CULTURE, CREATED FALSE BIBLE, RECONSTRUCTIONS OF THE BIBLE, WORSHIPED FALSE prophets, INVENTED fictional lego god, MURDERED, KILLED, MURDERED, DESTROYED LANDS, STOLEN, BOMBED, STOLEN, KILLED, BOMBED, MURDERED, DIVIDED, HATED, SEEN HUNDREDS OF FALSE PROPHETS , SEEN HUNDREDS OF EARTH QUAKES, SEEN HUNDREDS OF LIES, INVENTED LIES , INVENTED PROPHECIES, YET jesus CONFIRMED he is A FALSE “savior”

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    • LOL, “amazing accuracy” indeed! I see in Ken some “amazing gullibility”!

      Here is my article about prophecies in the NT, which shows that there are false prophecies in this book:

      https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/prophecies-in-the-holy-scriptures-word-of-god-or-folly-of-man-part-ii/#_edn24

      Of course, I have no problem with the belief that Jesus (pbuh) made amazing prophecies which came true. Of course he did. He was a prophet of God! That’s what they do! And it makes sense that Jesus would have foretold the destruction of the temple since it would occur so close to his own lifetime.

      But the problem for Christians is that their book has false prophecies in it. These false prophecies are not from Jesus (pbuh). They are from the false apostles and teachers who claimed to speak in his name and who corrupted his message.

      Like

  8. You need a great and powerful and loving mediator who can pray and intercede for you at the right hand of God the Father.

    Hebrews 7:25
    Therefore He (Al Masih المسیح ) is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

    31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?
    32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?
    33 Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies;
    34 who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.

    35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
    36 Just as it is written,
    “For Your sake we are being put to death all day long;
    We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
    37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.
    38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,
    39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Romans 8:31-39

    Like

    • “You need a great and powerful and loving mediator who can pray and intercede for you at the right hand of God the Father.”

      did god forget that he owns everything and has power over sin? is gods only power to forgive by becoming a limited pagan idol and then getting defeated by death?

      i dare your god to DIE a second time, then we will only know if death really does not have power over him. i dare your pagan god to do this.

      btw a mediator does not mediate between itself and someone else. in your example mediator is a god. you are making god a mediator to ITSELF .

      in tanakh you don’t need intercessor

      “The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.”

      no blood god/god mediator required. no sacrificial act required.

      yhwh says blood does not mediate :

      “‘Only of the blood of your own lives will I demand an account. I will demand [such] an account from the hand of every wild beast. From the hand of man – [even] from the hand of a man’s own brother – I will demand an account of [every] human life. He who spills human blood shall have his own blood spilled by man, for G-d made man with His own image.” Genesis 9:5-6.

      jesus was human, ergo his blood cannot wash other peoples sins.

      you don’t need jesus says yhwh .

      Like

    • You cannot quote Psalm 145:18 without believing in all the context of the Jewish Levitical sacrificial system / temple and sacrifices.

      Yahweh says the blood does ransom and mediate – Leviticus chapters 1-7, 16:17; Exodus chapter 12; Genesis 22 (affirmed by the Qur’an in Surah 37:107 as a ransom)
      Boom! your argument fails.

      Leviticus 17:11
      For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement.’

      Hebrews 9:22
      without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins.

      but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.
      Hebrews 9:26

      10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

      11 Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; 12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet. 14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.

      Hebrews 10:10-14

      Like

    • “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement.’”

      quote :

      “‘Only of the blood of your own lives will I demand an account. I will demand [such] an account from the hand of every wild beast. From the hand of man – [even] from the hand of a man’s own brother – I will demand an account of [every] human life. He who spills human blood shall have his own blood spilled by man, for G-d made man with His own image.” Genesis 9:5-6.

      are you a retard ken temple?

      BLOOD of human DOES not atone.

      jesus’ HUMAN blood was shed.

      Like

    • Genesis 9:5-6 is about capital punishment for murder.

      It has nothing to do with the atonement in Leviticus 17:11

      Like

  9. “Genesis 9:5-6 is about capital punishment for murder.

    It has nothing to do with the atonement in Leviticus 17:11”

    even though jesus was MURDERED , his blood is an atonement in light of lev 17:11 ?

    quote :

    1The Lord said to Moses, 2“Speak to Aaron and his sons and to all the Israelites and say to them: ‘This is what the Lord has commanded: 3Any Israelite who sacrifices an ox,a a lamb or a goat in the camp or outside of it 4instead of bringing it to the entrance to the tent of meeting to present it as an offering to the Lord in front of the tabernacle of the Lord—that person shall be considered guilty of bloodshed; they have shed blood and must be cut off from their people. 5This is so the Israelites will bring to the Lord the sacrifices they are now making in the open fields. They must bring them to the priest, that is, to the Lord, at the entrance to the tent of meeting and sacrifice them as fellowship offerings. 6The priest is to splash the blood against the altar of the Lord at the entrance to the tent of meeting and burn the fat as an aroma pleasing to the Lord. 7They must no longer offer any of their sacrifices to the goat idolsb to whom they prostitute themselves. This is to be a lasting ordinance for them and for the generations to come.’

    8“Say to them: ‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing among them who offers a burnt offering or sacrifice 9and does not bring it to the entrance to the tent of meeting to sacrifice it to the Lord must be cut off from the people of Israel.

    10“ ‘I will set my face against any Israelite or any foreigner residing among them who eats blood, and I will cut them off from the people. 11For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life.c 12Therefore I say to the Israelites, “None of you may eat blood, nor may any foreigner residing among you eat blood.”

    13“ ‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing among you who hunts any animal or bird that may be eaten must drain out the blood and cover it with earth, 14because the life of every creature is its blood. That is why I have said to the Israelites, “You must not eat the blood of any creature, because the life of every creature is its blood; anyone who eats it must be cut off.”

    what are you talking about ?

    Like

    • You are not understandable.

      I suppose God Himself did justice against Pontius Pilate, Herod Agrippa, Caiaphas and the leaders of Israel (especially in 70 AD). But some of them got saved in the book of Acts 2:22, 36; Acts 2:37-46 and 6:7

      The law of Israel was not carried out in first century Roman Empire.

      Like

  10. more proof that jesus of new testament was confirmed false prophet

    quote :

    The time is filled up and the Kingdom of God is almost here; repent and believe in the good news! (Mark 1:15)

    I take this to be an adequate summary of what Jesus himself actually preached. The saying about “time being filled up” is an apocalyptic image. Recall that for apocalypticists there were two ages of history – the present evil age that was running along its predetermined course and the glorious age to come in which God would establish his sovereignty once and for all. For Jesus, the time of this age was all but complete; the bottom of the sand clock was nearly filled. This age was near its end and the new Kingdom was almost here. People needed to prepare by turning to God and accepting this good news.
    Later Christians, of course, took this very term “good news” and …

    Later Christians, of course, took this very term “good news” and applied it to the accounts of Jesus’ life itself – especially the accounts of his death and resurrection. The same Greek word that I’ve rendered “good news” is translated “gospel” elsewhere. But obviously Jesus wouldn’t be urging people to believe in his own death and resurrection when he had just started his ministry – hence my translation.

    https://ehrmanblog.org/jesus-teaching-about-the-kingdom-of-god/

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Amos, psalms , Jeremiah and Isaiah seem to know a God who does not have blood sacrifices close to his heart. you said that the psalms verse I quoted needs to be interpreted in light of ritual sacrifices

    But hold on, the text clearly says that God is near, he sees and hears. do you want to say that the near God needs to drench his seeing and hearing in blood before he replies, hears or understands ?

    even you would agree that had the Jews turned those animals into sacrificed yhwh in the form of goat, you would call it idolatrous, even you would argue this . look at what you have done with animal sacrifices , you made an all hearing God into an ANIMAL sacrifice through these ritual acts. Is it a possibility that the prophets were knowing full well that this would happen to the idolatrous Jews ? is this why temple was destroyed ? There are powerful clues that your religions idolatry was already foreseen.

    he says he is near , but you want people to be near BLOOD AND RITUAL. I don’t get it.

    Like

  12. Samuel Green said:

    “He can only say it would be in their generation if he knew the day. Jesus makes it very clear he does not know. Therefore he cannot be saying his return is within a particular time.”

    Huh? What kind of logic is that? He could say it would be in their generation without having to know the exact day. A generation lasts a long time.

    In the book of Revelation, he is shown threatening some churches for sinful behavior and warns that if they don’t repent, he would come soon and punish them:

    “Repent therefore! Otherwise, I will soon come to you and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”

    And we know the context means that he would come soon, within the lifetime of the people in those churches, because he specifically refers to the practices of an obscure group called the Nicolaitans:

    “…you also have those who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 Repent therefore! Otherwise, I will soon come to you and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”

    For once, be honest with yourself and listen to reason. Do you honestly think that this threat was not meant to be fulfilled in that time?

    I discuss the historical context of Revelation in one of my articles. There is absolutely no doubt that Revelation was written for that time and all of the “prophecies” were supposed to be have been fulfilled in that time:

    https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2015/05/31/the-book-of-revelation/

    “Mark 9:1 is about the resurrection kingdom. Throughout the NT Jesus is said to be ruling from the right hand of God NOW. This happened during the lifetime of the disciples.”

    Even if this was true, that doesn’t change the fact that other verses make it very clear that the end would come in the lifetime of the disciples. Consider Matthew 10:23:

    ““When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.””

    In my article about prophecies in the NT, I wrote the following about this verse:

    In other words, the second coming was supposed to occur during the lifetimes of the disciples, which of course did not happen.[21] Some apologists have tried to deny this clear fact by making the baseless and preposterous assumption that the coming of the “Son of Man” was a reference not to the second coming of Jesus (peace be upon him) but to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE by the Romans. For example, Barnes claimed the following:

    “By “the coming of the Son of Man,” that is, of “Christ,” is probably meant the destruction of Jerusalem, which happened about thirty years after this was spoken. The words are often used in this sense.”

    Of course, he presented no evidence in support of this claim, besides quoting verses from the other Gospels, which ironically constitute no proof at all. Instead, like most apologists, Barnes was obviously unwilling to accept the facts and was rather content with resorting to mental gymnastics. If the prophecy was actually talking about the destruction of Jerusalem, then why didn’t it just say so? Why would the phrase “the coming of the Son of Man” not refer to the coming of Jesus (peace be upon him)? Christians go to great lengths to explain this clear false prophecy, but it would be prudent to just accept the plain truth. As the late Biblical scholar Walter Wink observed:

    “Exegetical gymnastics aimed at circumventing the clear intent of these statements are simply attempts to avoid the embarrassment of having to admit that the Bible was wrong.”[22] (https://quranandbibleblog.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/prophecies-in-the-holy-scriptures-word-of-god-or-folly-of-man-part-ii/)

    The teachings of Paul also show that he too was expecting the end very soon. In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul was clear that “the time is short”, when answering questions regarding the issue of marriage:

    “What I mean, brothers and sisters, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they do not; those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away.” (1 Corinthians 7:29-31)

    It is clear from this passage that Paul was convinced that the end was near. His answer to the question of marriage was that Christians could get married, but that since “the time [was] short”, it was probably better not to. Why would he have said that if he was not convinced that the end was near? Surely, he was not speaking to Christians 2,000 years later, who are still waiting for the end to come!

    Finally, 1 John 2:18 was even more crystal-clear that the end-times were here:

    “Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour.”

    The author did not say that the “last hour” was coming. He said it was already here. In other words, as Paul said it, time was short indeed.

    Sam said:

    “Where is your evidence?”

    See above.

    “Every generation of Christians believes this. Jesus said we are to always keep watch and be ready. Believing in his return is how we stay ready.””

    Yes, and is it surprising that every generation has claimed that the end is near and have ALWAYS been proven wrong? It all started with the early church. They thought the end was coming soon. And they were wrong.

    Like

  13. “There is absolutely no doubt that Revelation was written for that time and all of the “prophecies” were supposed to be have been fulfilled in that time:”

    That’s just your opinion. Amillenialists disagree.

    If you interpret Revelation literally there is a thousand year gap between the binding of Satan and the judgement of the Great White Throne which is the day of judgement.

    Jesus couldn’t come back before the thousand years are over.

    “Mark 9:1 is about the resurrection kingdom. Throughout the NT Jesus is said to be ruling from the right hand of God NOW. This happened during the lifetime of the disciples.”

    So what? How does that argue that he prophesied a quick return?

    “““When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.””

    This is probably a reference to the transfiguration.

    Like

    • “That’s just your opinion. Amillenialists disagree.”

      Uh, no. It’s the “opinion” of reasonable people who are not blinded by Christian propaganda. The evidence is very clear that Revelation was written for that time. The author did not have some “hidden” knowledge about events to come in the distant future.

      If Amillenialists disagree, then they are just a bunch of idiots.

      “If you interpret Revelation literally there is a thousand year gap between the binding of Satan and the judgement of the Great White Throne which is the day of judgement.

      Jesus couldn’t come back before the thousand years are over.”

      What on earth are you talking about? Jesus comes back before the start of the thousand year gap you dingbat!

      And if you interpret Revelation literally, then tell me which “kings” will bring their armies to Megiddo? Revelation says that the “kings of the east” will bring their armies for Armageddon. Which “kings” are there right now to the east of the Holy Land? All of those countries have not had a monarchy for decades.

      “So what? How does that argue that he prophesied a quick return?”

      Are you asking me or Sam? I didn’t write that part about Mark 9:1.

      “This is probably a reference to the transfiguration.”

      LOL, there goes the lying spirit again! What does the transfiguration have to do with the persecution of Christians? How many Christians were condemned to death before the transfiguration?

      “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death.”

      When did this happen before the transfiguration?

      Like

    • quote :
      “““When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.””

      This is probably a reference to the transfiguration.

      quote :
      16 “See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. 17 Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues; 18 and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of me, as a testimony to them and the Gentiles. 19 When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you at that time; 20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. 21 Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; 22 and you will be hated by all because of my name. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. 23 When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly I tell you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.

      are you saying that ALL the above took place before jesus this took place :

      The Transfiguration
      2 Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, 3 and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one[a] on earth could bleach them. 4 And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. 5 Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings,[b] one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 6 He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. 7 Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved;[c] listen to him!” 8 Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.

      Liked by 1 person

    • ” But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”

      but that was only referring to the transfiguration according to mad thing .

      Liked by 1 person

    • “LOL, there goes the lying spirit again! What does the transfiguration have to do with the persecution of Christians? How many Christians were condemned to death before the transfiguration?”

      that “prophecy” of their pagan man god-myth is just too embarrassing . it is the christians who went around killing people and driving them out in the name of thier pagan god.
      christians PERSECUTED people
      ken temple lives in a country in which the natives were murdered by christians.

      quote :
      Right after Luke’s Jesus mentions the desolation of Jerusalem, he instructs his disciples at that time to flee to the mountains, just as the Maccabean revolutionaries fled to the mountains in the time of Antiochus IV Epiphanes. Then Luke says (v. 24) that Jerusalem will be trampled on by the Gentiles, until the time of the Gentiles is fulfilled. What does this mean? It means that once the Romans attack Jerusalem, their time is pretty much up. When their time is up, that’s when the Son of Man will come on the clouds to avenge his people. There will be portents in the heavens, after the destruction of Jerusalem, and, according to Luke, “People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken” (21:26). Note that this describes a worldwide judgment, not merely a judgment on Jerusalem (which has already taken place). The judgment upon Jerusalem is precisely what instigates the judgment upon the world. Luke’s Jesus goes on:

      Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.

      I make it clear in my chapter what this means. According to Luke, the redemption of the people of God follows immediately upon destruction of Jerusalem. When the Son of Man comes, that is the redemption of the people of God, not the judgment against them (which has already taken place). Kevin, I think, misses this. Luke’s Jesus concludes the discourse, saying,

      Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.

      If the disciples are able to escape the suffering that will come upon Jerusalem, then they will be there to stand before the Son of Man when he comes to deliver them from the Gentiles, when the Gentiles’ time has been fulfilled. This is precisely the same script we see in Daniel 11-12, as well as the same script we see in Zechariah 14, where God brings the Gentiles against Jerusalem in order to judge Jerusalem, only immediately to turn around and wipe out the Gentiles for doing so, ushering in an era of everlasting peace for Jerusalem and God’s people, and the worldwide hegemony of Israel. This is precisely what we see in Luke 21.

      //////////

      Liked by 1 person

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