Jesus can't be proven to have existed

Rivalry Side A | Other | Religion

I can prove Jesus existed.

Rivalry Side B | Other | Religion

Is there any reason to believe Jesus is anything more than a myth?

1

Posted by in Other / Religion on 2/08/13
Debate Leaders
  1. LIBERAL (3 votes)
  1. Tim Donk (2 votes)

Side A fans: (2)

Neutral Fans: (5)


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Neutral Comment

Olivia Newton - 5/27/13 @ 9:51 AM:
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The highly intelligent comments by both Donk and Liberal have whetted my appetite to pull out my shelves of books on Christianity and pre-Christian beliefs. The Gnosis, the Dead Sea Scrolls and books considered heretical by the early Christians. My memory has faded with my many years, but I am still excited about learning more on this subject. I would like to communicate with both of you people if the powers -that- be will allow me to give you my personal e-mail address. I'm hungry to learn! Thank you!
Tim Donk - 6/5/13 @ 5:14 PM: Rival | Side A
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Feel free to contact me. Tim@timdonk.com
LIBERAL - 6/9/13 @ 1:29 PM: Ally | Neutral
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You know you can contact me any time you like. My email is rick052073@yahoo.com Tim, you are more than welcome to contact me as well. I have enjoyed our back and forth immensely. Sorry, I've been so hit and miss. It is finally beginning to slow down at work, and I will try to be more attentive.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 4/21/13 @ 1:14 AM:
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Better jump on this quick while I have a bit of down time.

Back tracked? I stated from the beginning that there is no contemporary evidence for Jesus, the writers of his time are completely silent. If Jesus existed, he wasn't a very big deal. You keep asking for proof,which I don't have. Neither do I have proof for the nonexistence of unicorns, fairies, Djinns, Sprites,Robin Hood etc. Maybe you can define what it is that you wish to see as proof, because I'm not understanding. I have fully addressed each of your posted references, The first of which you claim to have been a trick, while the rest are nothing but the same old same old refutations to the Christ myth I have heard for the last 3 years.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 3/28/13 @ 5:42 AM:
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Not done here brother, it's balls to the wall at work and I haven't had time to do much more than work and sleep....maybe this weekend I can address this issue.
LIBERAL - 3/31/13 @ 10:29 PM: Rival | Neutral
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I understand. No problem. Just get back to me whenever you can.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 3/6/13 @ 1:24 PM:
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The first century CE is very well documented and a great deal of the documents that were destroyed were destroyed by Christians as "heretical". So we are right back where we started. There is no physical or contemporary evidence that Jesus existed. Not sure what it is that you want to see of my research. I have read many books on the subject,from both sides of the argument, listened to many debates and lectures, countless websites and shoe boxes full of little notebooks and post it notes that I will some day compile....Yeah right :~)

My "Motive" is nothing more than to question what people base their belief on. I set out to find any proof of the man depicted in the bible and have yet to find anything compelling. Were there men named "Jesus" in the first century? Probably thousands, as Yeshua/Yehoshuah was a very common Jewish name. Were there men claiming to be the messiah/king of the Jews at that time? Many. Can we select a single individual and attribute all that is said about Jesus to him? No.

As you research various aspects of this elusive character you will find that much of what is said about him had been said about others that predate Jesus, much of what he is alleged to have said had been said by others, in short, a theme begins to surface....I'm ranting and I need to get ready for work.



LIBERAL - 3/16/13 @ 10:07 PM: Rival | Neutral
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Forgive me, but I've been extremely busy the last couple of weeks. I know my responses have been somewhat sporadic regarding time. I'll begin with taking issue with your very first statement.

Exactly how can the first century CE be so well documented if a great deal of the documents were destroyed by "christians"? Second, why would the "christians" be the people destroying the documents when so many of them would have proven the existence of the historical Jesus. I wish to see your so-called research because so far none of your arguments have made much of an argument except to prove how contradictory you are. Honestly, you state one thing, and then completely backtrack with the very next sentence. I have offered several citations and websites. To date you have offered exactly... ...none. You state that you have researched this particular subject for over 3 years, but as far as the evidence you can provide for such research, it leaves much less to be desired.

Your "motive" is quite apparent in your every attempt to prove one thing while showing no proof as to your own belief other than the lack of it. In fact, the only thing you've managed to prove to me is that you honestly don't know what you believe.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 3/5/13 @ 1:01 PM:
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For all that has been claimed for Jesus, all his miracles, his confrontations with Jewish officials,his fame "far and wide"(now being downplayed by apologists)earthquakes ,dead men walking the streets etc. etc. Not a single writer during the time of the events bothered recording any of it.

Not Philo
Not Seneca
Not Plutarch
Not Justus
Not Damis
Not Pliny the Elder......


Pliny the Younger (61-111 CE)
Suetonius(75-150CE)
Josephus (37-c.100 CE)
LIBERAL - 3/5/13 @ 8:31 PM: Rival | Neutral
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Your evidence presented actually proves less than nothing Donk. Much of that period was never recorded. It's of no historical or empirical proof that next to nothing was recorded concerning Jesus considering the fact that much of that age was either never recorded or has unfortunately been lost or destroyed since. Lack of evidence neither proves nor disproves Jesus' existence. I question your motive though concerning this entire thread. If you asked the question, then surely you believe you have some proof as to your point. I have offered several links and citations regarding what is believed by both historical and scientific communities to be evidence of at least the existence of the "man" Jesus. Thus far you have offered no evidence or suggestions as to the invalidity of the existence of this man, though I have asked for it at least twice. Once again I will ask for the proof of this 3+ years of research you have completed. If you have any I would like to see it. Believe me when I tell you I am a very open-minded person. I would just like to see this research you speak of, if you don't mind sharing.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/26/13 @ 2:02 AM:
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Are we done?
LIBERAL - 3/3/13 @ 9:34 PM: Rival | Neutral
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Not quite yet. Been a little busy lately. I apologize. So, you appear to be a little smarter than the average bear. You didn't fall for my trick. Good. Still, you haven't provided any evidence of his non-existence. Here's a few links you might be interested in. Let me know what you think.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pliny_the_Younger#Epistle_concerning_the_Christian_Religion

http://http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suetonius#The_Great_Fire_and_the_Christiani

http://http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacitus#Tacitus_on_Christ

http://http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josephus_on_Jesus#The_three_passages

Though I have found several documents and entries that support the existence of Jesus I have not come across any historical documents or otherwise citations that deny his existence, or for that matter attempt to denounce his existence with anything other than doubtful opinions. If you have any such proof I would appreciate receiving the links so that I might read it or them, as the case may be. Thanks.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/22/13 @ 5:36 AM:
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Just got home from work and I am beat!! I won't be able to respond to your entire post til later but....

The Archko Volume?.....Again? I thought this one was put to rest years ago. I suggest you research this book, the author William Dennes Mahan and his subsequent punishment by the church for producing this utter fabrication of "facts".

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/21/13 @ 1:03 PM:
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Other than the the document in question,the bible, we have no evidence that Jesus ever existed.

"factual and historical references that can be cited."

"This is noted in many historical documents written by the Roman courts"
Please share, I know of no such documents.

My questioning of the "Uniqueness" of Jesus' story is based on the fact that there are many messianic claims and the Birth,miracles,death and resurrection stories are a common theme among religions.

I am not trying to prove Jesus never existed, I am trying to understand why people believe he existed. I went for many years simply assuming he did, I have no problem with it being proven that he did.

LIBERAL - 2/21/13 @ 9:56 PM: Rival | Neutral
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I am afraid you are mistaken. It's okay. After all, you're only human. Below I will include a couple of links showing the document written to the Roman Senate by Herod Antipas begging for clemency concerning his actions before the Empire. You may not be trying to prove Jesus did not exist, but clearly there is documented evidence of his existence, and not just in the printed word of the Bible. Regarding uniqueness, please describe any other religious messiah whose story even comes close to mimicking that of Jesus'.

http://www.paradisepbc.org/Articles/Secular%20History/Historical%20Court%20Records%20of%20Christ%20Chpt%2010.htm

http://www.bibleprobe.com/antipas.htm

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/20/13 @ 4:47 AM:
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Confidence and trust in a person or thing is vastly different than claiming confidence and trust in an incorporeal thing. At the heart of all of this is the fact that their are many choices of religions yet no one can articulate why they believe what they believe is true. Never have I had a discussion on this subject that it didn't end with the "faith claim". In my mind,"faith" is merely a tool used to sidestep the issue,but I realize it is merely what the believer has been taught to say. I honestly want to know why people believe what they believe (in regard to gods)it has always been an intriguing subject to me. More to the point of this particular debate, What evidence is there which leads one to believe Jesus existed? His story is far from unique,so what makes him special?
LIBERAL - 2/20/13 @ 8:22 PM: Rival | Neutral
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My "faith" goes a little further in this instance rather than just belief. There is factual and historical references that can be cited. You are aware of this, right? Pontius Pilate, the fifth prefect of the Roman Empire under the rule of Emperor Tiberius was the judge at the court of the proceedings involving Jesus Christ's alleged treasonous acts. He found Jesus guilty of treason and sentenced him to death, hence the crucifixion. If Pilate simply wanted Jesus to disappear and never be entered into any record why did he insist on trying him? Instead he tried him and found him guilty. This is noted in many historical documents written by the Roman courts. It was also recorded as such during the Council of Nicea, and in the Holy Bible as well. Don't you find it strange that his presence was mentioned by three separate proceedings/documentations? I would have expected that someone who had done so much research concerning disproving the existence of a person would have considered also researching the documents that do in fact corroborate his existence. I am afraid I also have to disagree with the "his story is far from unique" comment. What other man claiming to be the son of God have you ever known to have been tried, sentenced, and put to death for the crime of teaching love and tolerance to the masses by the Roman Empire? None come to mind. I would dare to call that somewhat unique.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/11/13 @ 8:30 AM:
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Putting aside the obvious false equivocation between Jesus and the Civil War,We also have the written word of thousands of other religions. Tell me how it is you have arrived at the assumption that the stories about Jesus are fact and all other miraculous claims, made by other religious texts, are false?

Neutral Comment

Jeff - 2/10/13 @ 9:20 PM:
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I believe in Jesus as well,saying he didn't exist is like saying the Civil War never happen was I there was you there no yet we believe it did and all we have is the written words and photographs.We have have photographs of Jesus just the written word.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/10/13 @ 5:38 PM:
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I'm not trying to "Prove" Jesus never existed, I'm saying I see no reason to believe he did. I will go as far as to say it can't be proven,using the evidence that mainstream apologists offer up.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/9/13 @ 7:26 PM:
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I will gladly share any knowledge I have gained on the subject these past few years. Before we continue,however, I would like for you to define faith. I can't present reason and logic if I am up against an ever changing, undefinable standard.
LIBERAL - 2/19/13 @ 7:38 PM: Rival | Neutral
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The same as any other would define faith; confidence or trust in a person or thing. I have faith in the existence of a deity, just as I have faith in the existence of oxygen. I am unable to see either one, but that does not mean that neither one does not exist.

Neutral Comment

The Boss - 2/8/13 @ 11:06 PM:
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I would love to see the evidence as well. I took a neutral stance because I believe the concept of a Deity "just existing" is a lot more likely than an ever expanding singularity "just existing". I do get a kick out of the scientific community ridiculing the religious when the basis of their argument is no more concrete than that of the religious and actually relies on something just existing as does the idea of creationism.

Side A Comment

Tim Donk - 2/8/13 @ 9:30 PM:
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3+ years of research and I see no reason to believe Jesus ever existed. I am open to new ideas on the subject.
LIBERAL - 2/9/13 @ 11:48 AM: Rival | Neutral
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I honestly would like to see some of your research. I personally do believe in Jesus. My reasoning is not so much based on evidence of existence, but the only reason I have ever needed. Faith. I am always open to debate, and would like to see what research you have completed to prove otherwise if you don't mind sharing.
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