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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Thanks Jo <3
I agree.

...I have to lie down now...
I didn't even think anyone had said we could know beyond a reasonable doubt. This is all a matter of what seems likely or not likely. Disagreement or not, Jo has maintained a respectful way of communicating that should serve as an example to this Earthling fellow. People can disagree without belittling each other and acting like cretins.
Matt - Whoa. I agreed with a post of yours and now you've agreed with one of mine. I think the Earth may have stopped spinning for a moment there.

And on my post here ... "I seriously don't get where you think Matt VDB is saying..."

"Think." Not "Thing."

Dyslexia + black plague of the sinuses = even wonkier on the keyboard than usual.

x_x
JstN - Where did I call you childish? I said that the admins have asked us all to play nice in the sandbox. Is that what you're referring to?

You posted that Matt VDB thinks there is no difference between Historical and Biblical Jesus.

I responded that I don't know where you're getting that - For all that I do disagree with Matt on, for all that many of his tactics are suspiciously like that of Theists, I have indeed seen him make huge distinctions between HJ/BJ.
Why can't you defend yourself using reason? Why do you have to resort to ranting and raving?
"JstN Earthling is no longer a member of Atheist Nexus."

That explains why we've had at least 24 hours without insults in this thread, miracles do exist!
I hope banning isn't permanent. Given a half a year or a year, a person can learn a lesson or two and change his/her tune.
Well, not like the guy wasn't warned. Repeatedly.
There's a big void where evidence of Jesus should be. I used to lean toward Jesus as a myth in stead of a person. But Paul was born about 5 years after Jesus and converted to Christianity only a few years after Jesus died. I'm not really sure if Jesus existed as a flesh-and-blood person but I can concede that the possibility is real, if not as convincing as it should be.
There's a big void where evidence of Jesus should be.

Extremely well-worded.

Not that absence of evidence is absolute proof of non-existence, especially given time/place/amount of time for evidence to get lost. But when Theists try and use that reasoning to continue to connect Historical Jesus to Biblical Jesus, I ask...

If his message was so damn important and/or he was so damn set on starting a new religious revolution, don't you think the earliest scriptures would have been written down during his lifetime? Perhaps in his own hand? And don't tell me that might have happened but they got lost, because early Xians seem to have had little trouble holding onto copies of scripture once it did become important to them. Logical conclusion: It wasn't important to them during Jesus' (supposed) lifetime.

Ergo, at best historical Jesus bears little or no resemblance to bible-Jesus outside of name/place/occupation. Which are not in themselves uncommon. At the least, it's even plausible the name and/or place and/or occupation was entirely pulled out of someone's ass.

Either way, as soon as Theists go looking for historical Jesus of the bible, I.e.; the Jesus who originated/inspired the ideology of the canon bible, that's where I say Saul of Tarsus makes a far better historical Jesus than historical Jesus does.

Saul of Tarsus and other various authors wrote the songs. Jesus is the face on the cover of the Milli Vanilli album and does the lip-syncing for the videos.
I used to think he was an amalgamation, like Robin Hood or Arthur, and this was all a story conjured up and tailored specifically for Roman cults that sprang up among their poor and lower class citizens, as it seems tailored to appeal to the downtrodden and peasant class. After it's success for a while it managed to be one of the religions picked up by an upper class woman (whether because it was "in fashion" or she was earnestly touched) who was the mother of an emperor who later converted to it himself and legitimized it within a wealthy state. And this religion managed to proliferate out of it's ability to adapt, an adaptation of which we still face today.

But I now think it makes more sense that Jesus was just a man who claimed to be a messiah (only a prophet and not the son of god) that was only attributed with divine origin decades after his death, and the cult did spring up in Jerusalem before traveling to Rome. I mostly believe this because of how christianity's early contemporary and secular detractors attack Christ for his fallible aspects and base birth, and never attempt to question if he existed at all. Paul would have to be creating quite a story so soon after the crucifixion if Jesus was never around at all. I don't think this is likely.
That idea might work for the many obvious supernatural elements in the story, and for the prophecies that Jesus fits, but it doesn't fit at all with the large number of cases where he so obviously does not meet those expectations. His birth in Nazareth, his crucifixion, his failed miracles, his baptism as a sinner,... all these things were not simply absent in Jewish beliefs at the time, they were antithetical to them. The gospel writers go to great difficulty to either omit, dismiss, minimalise or otherwise justify these freak occurrences.

What you're doing is looking at the result of this cover-up process and saying "Well see, he fits Messianic expectations perfectly so he's probably made up". What you're ignoring is how hard they have to try to make it seem that way. Why are all these events in the story? Because they are historical, that's why.
Look at this way: what idea accounts for these things the best? That some Jews got tired of waiting for someone to fit these Messianic expectations, and then invented someone who did not fit them well at all? Or that they got tired of waiting and were forced to shoe-horn a historical figure into those expectations, even though he didn't fit them at all?

What do you see cults doing most?

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