There are a few reasons why Christians are Christian. One of the main reasons is to do with Jesus and who he was and what he did. After all if he was who he said he was and performed those miracles, rose from the dead then it would be foolish to deny his claims about being the son of God and that the way to heaven is through him. What's a way to convince them that the gospels cannot be true?

 

 

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"Thus, we tell Christians that we accept he existed, but that he was nothing special, that would be as acceptable to xtians as trying to argue that he did not exist."


It might be as offensive to them as arguing that he didn't exist, but it's a lot more reasonable than arguing that he didn't exist.

It's a mystery to me why people are so keen on denying Jesus' existence when all that's necessary to rebuke Christianity is denying his supernatural powers, but hey...

 Ah yes simply tell them Jesus lived but was nothing special and Christianity stands rebuked. Have you considered the possibility that others have (and still are ) trying to do just that?

Yes.

Are you saying that if it's not working as well as we like, we should just make crap up? Because it seemed like that was what you were trying to do in this thread for a moment.

If you had bothered to read my posts you would find that I was simply pointing out that there was no simplistic uniformity of acceptence of the life and times of Jesus amongst atheists.

 

As for made up crap, show me the Q document that you have been blathering about, and then you can point me to your Gospels.You know the ones I mean, those without the inherent historical contradictions as in the "Cry of desolation"

If you had bothered to read my posts you would find that I was simply pointing out that there was no simplistic uniformity of acceptence of the life and times of Jesus amongst atheists.


You actually did quite a bit more of that, but fine.


As for made up crap, show me the Q document that you have been blathering about


We have part of Q because we have the works of the people who copied from Q. See here.

You know the ones I mean, those without the inherent historical contradictions as in the "Cry of desolation"


You realise that the cry of desolation first being recorded in Aramaic and later changed to more theologically acceptable statements, is a prime example of how we can glean historicity from the gospels, right?

1st off it's just a story.. most are fake

What's a way to convince them that the gospels cannot be true?

Convince them to read books by Bart Ehrman.


If you really want to bake their noodle, go after the Old testament too, get 'em to google "The documentary hypothesis" and click the first wikipedia link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Documentary_hypothesis

It appears that it is becoming an obsession with atheists to prove that what we do not like actually does not exist. Recently, when I was looking at an Indian atheist site, one atheist was saying that the story of the epic Mahabharata is not true. Nobody is a historian and nobody has any convincing proof. If you are an atheist, it is fashionable to deny everything that is a part of past culture.

Having just read the backlog -I just want to give Matt VDB this *hug* for dedication shown in the defence of reason.

The thought that's been rolling round my head, now after having read all that follows on from this exchange between Matt and Jeremy:

"Thus, we tell Christians that we accept he existed, but that he was nothing special, that would be as acceptable to xtians as trying to argue that he did not exist."


"It might be as offensive to them as arguing that he didn't exist, but it's a lot more reasonable than arguing that he didn't exist."

Even better, we can concede with relatively little trouble the likelihood of Jesus existing - while not making the miracle claims or the grander theology any more valid or probable. To substantiate the miracle claims they have as Christopher Hitchens was often want to say, 'all their work still ahead of them.'

Ask them why God is so homophobic in Genesis (Lot in Sodom) but finds it perfectly OK for that same Lot to impregnate his own daughters once the missus turned into a pillar of salt?  A capricious God is one that you cannot depend on.  He burns down Sodom for being zenophobic (Lot refused a nomad a good meal and some grousing in the goodie with the host's wife).  The Christians are presentist in their thinking that 6,000 year old books have any application to life on the ground today.

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