Apparently you can't do polls on here.... but

Do any of you think that Jesus actually existed? What do category do you fall into?

A. Believed he existed, claims are false

B. Believed he existed, claims are exaggerated

C. Don't believe he existed

D. Believe he existed, claims are true (sorry had to leave the idiot category open)

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Origen also says that Josephus "does not believe Jesus to be the Christ". If he was only referring to the second passage then he couldn't possibly have made that statement since that passage only refers to "the brother of Jesus who was called Christ, James".
In addition, the second passage only makes sense in light of the first: Josephus would not have made the side-note "oh by the way, remember that Jesus the Christ character? Well, his brother James was one of the characters in this story right here..." unless he had already made a reference to Jesus the Christ before that.

Oh by the way, the Testimonium Flavium is not merely recognised as partially genuine by "Christian apologists". It's regarded that way by the majority of Biblical scholars, Christian or otherwise.
You make an appeal to authority premised on centuries of vested interest (majority of Biblical scholars) over and above an empirical study of the evidence. I, like most people here, do not adhere to "majority" or "consensus" conclusions about agreement on Christian theology. Historically, the opinion on the TF was divided.

You are wrong about the conclusions of Origen. He only references "the Brother of James" passages and the rest of the chapter, concluding Antiquities. He characterizes the content in ways that do not comport with the remainder of the text that have survived to our time, as I will explain in my comment on this evidence. The TF as it reads in our time is very clear in ways that were not apparent to Origen. From the Greek, one sentence translates to "He was the Christ (or Messiah)." The Greek word used is christos. This is in total contradiction to Origen's assertion.
"You make an appeal to authority premised on centuries of vested interest (majority of Biblical scholars) over and above an empirical study of the evidence."
I do no such thing. You're the one who dismissed the majority opinion (i.e. the TF is partially genuine) as "special pleading by Christian apologists". That's garbage: plenty of non-Christian historians hold that conclusion.
So don't give me crap about making an appeal to authority: you're the one who dismissed them out of hand as "Christian apologists" without basis. I'm merely pointing out that that is wrong.

"You are wrong about the conclusions of Origen. He only references "the Brother of James" passages and the rest of the chapter, concluding Antiquities. He characterizes the content in ways that do not comport with the remainder of the text that have survived to our time, as I will explain in my comment on this evidence."
I'll wait for your next post then.
Have any of you seen the movie the Man who came from Earth? Interesting movie for taking place in one cabin with no special effects. Also an interesting scenario on the origins of Christ and his connection with Buddha. A scenario of total fantasy, but a good watch I thought. I am certain it comes off as anti christian dogma to Christians, but I think the idea was only meant to be a mental exercise. Being written by a former Star Trek writer, it's no surprise to see these cultural tenants turned upside down to review.
I'm not suggesting the movie's concepts are plausible at all, it's just a novel bit of entertainment I would recommend.

It's basically about a man who brings all his closest friends to a cabin to tell them he has been alive for 14,000 years. These people all happen to be college professors and scientists, as the main character is as well. The whole movie is basically a semi skeptical inquiry by his friends to determine if he is lying or not, and how a life for 14k years could effect a person.
There probably was a man named Jesus that started a religio-political movement in first century Palestine. In fact, one of his apostles was called the zeolot which leads me to believe that he was part of that group as well. The stories about his miracles are largely stolen from the Hebrew scriptures, and I would suspect that the others are simply made up or stolen from pagan sources. The story of a dying and rising god is a well known pagan myth (e.g. Osiris), and I think that it was merely taken from the mystery religions of the Roman Empire and applied to Jesus over time. So I guess I fall in the "B" category.
This would be called a Euhemerist or Evemerist position, The events and activity of this region are quite well documented for the time, but there is a dearth of textual evidence for your founder of a religio-political movement you mention. I have started to critique the "scrappy" evidences on the previous page.
Interesting.... I learned some new words today. thanks!
no
I believe, as if belief has any credibility, that jeebus lived, but was the Houdini of his day, a showman. Like now, there was a living to be made as a religious warbler. Also, no education, no knowlege of anything and cultural superstition made a fertile ground for what has become the single biggest con of all time.
Yes, but Arrian states up front that he prefers a source who was contemporary to Alexander, Ptolemy (the "Anabasis", now lost). What author references any source that was actually contemporary to or within a few years of the alleged Jesus?
Many of the early church apologists reference works that were well known to the wealthy and well-educated, especially Tertullian. Christian historians often portray the earliest believers as slaves and among the lowest classes, but the literature poses a profound contradiction.

BTW, the first 3 Popes are not mentioned by any of the earliest patristic apologists. It is not until Irenaeus, many decades after their alleged See in Rome, are they mentioned, in 170 CE at the earliest.
(C) I do not believe Jesus Christ ever existed as an actual person, combined with (E) don't think it matters anyway since all religion is false.

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