Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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GakuseiDon
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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by GakuseiDon » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:22 am

Ulan wrote:
GakuseiDon wrote:Agnostic views like Vinny's seem to me to have too many "maybe something else"s as conversation killers. Let's just acknowledge assumptions and move on.
:)

Well, yes, that's what everybody does. This doesn't mean Vinny is wrong. You will never know.
Not wrong, but stifling. Most theories are built on assumptions, some of which are validated along the way. To be clear: I'm not saying "don't question things", but more the idea that questioning things somehow invalidates them. If we do that we might as well go with LC's theory that Christianity started in the Fourth Century.
It is really important, in life, to concentrate our minds on our enthusiasms, not on our dislikes. -- Roger Pearse

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Peter Kirby
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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by Peter Kirby » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:26 am

outhouse wrote:
Peter Kirby wrote:The myth started 200 BC. The myth started AD 40. The myth started AD 75. The myth started AD 145.

Or something like that.

And the myth started with or without a HJ. The HJ is not needed to explain the myth.

Are you suggesting that a peasant crucified at Passover makes for a bad story?
Then may I present another question. When did the mythological core as a few claim start? I thought the context was pretty obvious.
Phone ate my post.

Speculatively put the authentic ROM, 1COR, and HEB at ca. 55, the MARK at ca 75, and the exegesis represented behind BARNABAS between these two, and figure it out. The rest is commentary...
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by Ulan » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:27 am

Peter Kirby wrote:It's not as deep a question as it seems at first sight. And there are answers if slightly speculative. They have been mentioned often enough in this forum and the literature, so why do we pretend the discussion has not already advanced this far?
Not sure whom you addressed, but if it's me, then I can just say that I didn't read everything on this forum. My bad. One thing I could think of on the spot is that Mark just used "40 years prior", as it's such a popular number.

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by outhouse » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:28 am

Peter Kirby wrote: so why do we pretend the discussion has not already advanced this far?

Posted on a phone.

Because without a replacement hypothesis to explain the evidence we do have. the Mythicist position is dead in the water until it can explains the evidence where its not laughable.


In context it is mythicist not answering questions. And not explaining the origins of Christianity as we know it.

I think you and Neil ought to knock heads together, and at least try to place something forward. Between the two of you, I think you could produce something better the Carrier and Doherty, and the space Jesus :facepalm:

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by Ulan » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:30 am

GakuseiDon wrote:Not wrong, but stifling. Most theories are built on assumptions, some of which are validated along the way. To be clear: I'm not saying "don't question things", but more the idea that questioning things somehow invalidates them.
I think you discovered why so few NT scholars deal with the history behind Jesus. It's a pretty futile endeavor. Dealing with the history of the NT texts on the other hand is a fascinating thing to do.
GakuseiDon wrote:If we do that we might as well go with LC's theory that Christianity started in the Fourth Century.
Now, now, let's not get overboard. We want to have at least some evidence.

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by Peter Kirby » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:58 am

outhouse wrote:
Peter Kirby wrote: so why do we pretend the discussion has not already advanced this far?

Posted on a phone.

Because without a replacement hypothesis to explain the evidence we do have. the Mythicist position is dead in the water until it can explains the evidence where its not laughable.


In context it is mythicist not answering questions. And not explaining the origins of Christianity as we know it.

I think you and Neil ought to knock heads together, and at least try to place something forward. Between the two of you, I think you could produce something better the Carrier and Doherty, and the space Jesus :facepalm:

I don't try to force something half assed. We have had enough of that all around. The results are what you expect.

I definitely appreciate that the bottom up detail oriented approach of Godfrey and Widowfield.

Doherty and Carrier are not right in all details, but they both substantially advanced the discussion.
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by outhouse » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:01 am

Peter Kirby wrote:[Doherty and Carrier are not right in all details, but they both substantially advanced the discussion.
How so?

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by Peter Kirby » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:52 am

outhouse wrote:
Peter Kirby wrote:[Doherty and Carrier are not right in all details, but they both substantially advanced the discussion.
How so?
Carrier for his discussion of the "background" of Christianity (On the Historicity of Jesus, pp. 56-234). Doherty on similar considerations but especially for the extremely detailed discussion (primarily on his website) of his interpretation of the New Testament epistles, together with 1 Clement and the Odes of Solomon and perhaps some others (perhaps minus the Pastorals and some Apologists), and several themes. Both of them had a tendency to get a little eager in claiming some particular sources as being seemingly important to illustrate their case (Carrier for the Ascension of Isaiah, Doherty for the Pastorals and some Apologists--although they could still be right) and to follow too slavishly the assumptions of mainstream scholarship (particularly on questions of the text before the recoverable archetype and questions of dating and authenticity--although, again, the mainstream assumptions are not definitively proven wrong). But in proper science, you are remembered for your productive ideas, not for any stumbling which led you to them.

By the way, this is the first time I've noticed that Doherty's second book title may be a direct allusion.

PS-- Everybody accepts the "the space Jesus" hypothesis. It is not in dispute, just the timeline is. Jesus is a heavenly being in Christianity. I have always found it bizarre how so many people (PhDs included), when criticizing 'mythicism', turn to zombie-New-Atheist-rhetoric-spouting-imbeciles when trying to make their reconstruction of ancient Christianity sound "rational" and their opponent's reconstruction of ancient Christianity sound "irrational." By atheist standards, it's all irrational; by theological standards, it's all rational. So the polemical overtones here are a little bizarre.

PPS-- So is Carrier's choice of "outer space" over anything else but that's another discussion (he's trying to "ditch specialist lingo" or something).
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by outhouse » Tue Apr 07, 2015 11:37 am

Peter Kirby wrote:PS-- Everybody accepts the "the space Jesus" hypothesis.


Understood that heavenly Jesus is who Paul refers to, as he views Jesus as a man who died and rose to heaven.


Who really accepts that jesus started as a heavenly figure as Carrier and Doherty follow? It just doesn't make sense and goes against the evidence. You notice this.


They both critique the evidence against, and rely on the same material for their evidence. To me, it just makes no sense.

If I was a mythicist, I would be hunted for something more palatable then that hypothesis.

But in proper science, you are remembered for your productive ideas, not for any stumbling which led you to them.
Agreed.


A door not open is a door not explored.

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Re: Vinny's Jesus Agnostic Blog

Post by MrMacSon » Tue Apr 07, 2015 11:44 am

MrMacSon wrote: Care to provide a list of these pre-Pauline Jewish, Roman and Greek writings that express Paul's ideas?
neilgodfrey wrote:
I was thinking of works exploring Paul's ideas as found in Greek-Roman and other Jewish literature:
  • Troels Engberg-Pedersen (Paul and the Stoics)
    Malherbe (Paul and the Philosophers)
    Huttenen (Paul and Epictetus on Law)
    James Waddell (Messiah: A Comparative Study of the Enochic Son of Man and the Pauline Kyrios)
    Jarvis Williams (Maccabean Martyr Traditions in Paul's Theology)
And most recently I have been reading the following and finding many explanations of Paul's ideas found in Docherty's "Jewish Pseudepigrapha" and Litwa's "Iesus Deus" which identifies Greek and Roman sources for some of Paul's thought.
Thanks Neil.

It would seem "exploring Paul's ideas as found in Greek-Roman and other Jewish literature" would be a useful historical exercise.

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