Archives for : Delusions

Early Views on Young Earth Creationism

Many modern Young Earth Creationist believe their current view to be one held by early Christians continuously until present times. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Some of the earliest recorded writings from after the birth of Christianity show us otherwise:

“And on the sixth day God finished his work which he had made.” It would be a sign of great simplicity to think that the world was created in six days, or indeed at all in time; because all time is only the space of days and nights, and these things the motion of the sun as he passes over the earth and under the earth does necessarily make. But the sun is a portion of heaven, so that one must confess that time is a thing posterior to the world. Therefore it would be correctly said that the world was not created in time, but that time had its existence in consequence of the world. For it is the motion of the heaven that has displayed the nature of time.

When, therefore, Moses says, “God completed his works on the sixth day,” we must understand that he is speaking not of a number of days, but that he takes six as a perfect number.” -Philo (c. 20 BC – c. 50 AD) from the Works of Philo book 2

 

“What man of intelligence, I ask, will consider it a reasonable statement that the first and the second and the third day, in which there are said to be both morning and evening, existed without sun and moon and stars, while the first day was even without a heaven? And who could be found so silly as to believe that God, after the manner of a farmer, ‘planted trees in a paradise East of Eden’? … And … when God is said to ‘walk in the paradise in the evening, … I do not think anyone will doubt that these are figurative expressions which indicate certain mysteries through semblance of history.” -Origen (c. 184 – 254 AD)

 

“Whether you call it a ‘day’ or whether you call it ‘eternity’, you express the same idea.” – Basil of Caesarea (c. 329 – 379 AD) in Hexaemeron

 

“Of what fashion these days were, it is either very hard or almost impossible to think, much more to speak. As for ordinary days, we see that they have no morning or evening but as the sun sets and rises. But the first three days had no sun, for that was made on the fourth day.” – St Augustine (c. 354-430 AD)

 

If we go back to the earliest Christian teachers we will find a substantial focus on metaphorical and spiritual meanings of the Bible, more than maybe a modern Christian might expect. Roger Forster and Paul Marston write in “Reason and Faith” (Monarch, 1989):

In [the Church Fathers] there was, compared with today, a much greater emphasis on allegorical meaning of scripture. Thus, for example, Psalm 90:4 and 2 Peter 3:8 led many of them to take an allegorical interpretation of the ‘days’ in Genesis 1 to mean millenia. This view is expressed, for example, by Barnabas, Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Methodius, Lactantius, Theophilus and John of Damascus.

In the first half of the nineteenth century geologists like the evangelical Christian Cambridge Professor Adam Sedgwick developed the geological column much as it is today. He was a believer in the global flood and died a believer in a global flood. They knew the earth was very old, though none of them believed in evolution. By 1855 there was no serious theologian or scientist in Europe or America who believed the world made in six literal days six thousand years ago. Darwin published his book on evolution The Origin of Species in 1859. Darwin had supporters amongst all the major groups of Christians including evangelicals, and none of the famous figures who opposed him believed that the earth was a recent creation made in six days. Such ideas developed only in 20th century America.

Currently, science indicates an Earth some 4.6bn years old, but some people think the Genesis account of six “days” requires a geologically young Earth of 6,000-10,000 years. But that is not so. The historian, Professor David Livingstone, summarized a 19th-century perspective, when he wrote in Darwin’s Forgotten Defenders in 1987 that, “by and large, Christian geologists had both encountered and accommodated the issue of the age of the Earth long before the appearance of Darwin’s theory”.

http://www.academia.edu/793021/Interpreting_Genesis_in_the_21st_Century

http://noanswersingenesis.org.au/saintaugustine.htm

Does religion help societies more than it handicaps them?

http://www.faithstreet.com/onfaith/2011/10/17/is-religion-good-for-society/11378

Caesar vs. Jesus – Historical Evidence

Could this be the dumbest or most ignorant meme ever created? :

bs

Yes. Yes it could.

First… let us handle this 13,000 manuscripts fib. They may as well say 13 billion and count every bible in existence.

If one has a receipt from the store saying they bought a gallon of milk and someone makes 13,000 copies of parts of that receipt, it doesn’t add to the historicity of them buying the gallon of milk. THE END.

The manuscript evidence for Jesus comes down to the four gospels and Acts. One cannot count parts of the new testament that don’t mention Jesus in real world situations as evidence for the historicity of a character.

The oldest “manuscript” in support of Jesus is a tiny scrap of the Gospel of John, called fragment P52 dated somewhere between 117 CE and 138 CE. (If you think Jesus died in 33 CE, then this means the earliest piece of text from a Gospel came 84 to 105 years after his death. Who do you know that died 84 years ago? What did you write about them?)

p52

This is one of the “13,000 manuscripts about Jesus” mentioned in the meme above. It measures at 8.9cm x 6cm. What does it say when translated?

the Jews, “For us
anyone,” so that the w
oke signifyin
die. En
rium P
and sai
Jews?”

on the back:

this I have been born
world so that I would test-
of the truth
Said to him
and this
the Jews
not one

We have six of these kind of scraps dating from the second century CE, but they may be later. (P52, P66, P77, P90, P103, and P104)

But what is the second oldest scrap of a manuscript?

Egerton Papyrus 2 containing portions from an unknown Gospel.

Jesus walked and stood on the bank of the Jordan river; he reached out his right hand, and filled it…. And he sowed it on the… And then…water…and…before their eyes; and it brought forth fruit…many…for joy…

So included in our “13,000 manuscripts” are evidence for a Jesus that Christians don’t worship and a story, an incomplete account of a miracle, they wouldn’t see as historical.

The truth is there are about 720 root texts for the New Testament. Most of those texts are medieval. Of the surviving texts very few are complete books. About 14 of these are before 200 C.E. Many of these fragments have fewer than 20 words.

But none of that matters. Like much work of the time, we don’t have any of it. We just have copies made hundreds of years after the fact. What matters is content. This is why we know so much about Caesar and his acts. We have extant manuscripts from various historians. Actual historians that weren’t just writing a religious novel about one man, but actual histories of various men living in their time. Further, for Caesar, we have letters to and from other people talking about Caesar. People that didn’t even like him. This is where we part from the gospel authors who have no historical writings to their name.

Are the Gospels evidence for the historicity of Jesus?

Based on historical method, the Gospels are extremely weak. They don’t name their authors and they don’t name their sources. They don’t name how they got their information or who they got it from. The traditional naming of the authors is complete fabrication. None of the evidence holds up the probability of this case. In fact, it goes against it.

Despite common belief taught in Sunday school, they don’t show their sources. None of them. Not even Luke (Who is often touted to be a “great historian.”)

If we look at the “Guide to the Historical Method.” We ask some question for external Criticism.

  1. When was the source, written or unwritten, produced (date)? Don’t know.
  2. Where was it produced (localization)? Don’t know.
  3. By whom was it produced (authorship)? Don’t know.
  4. From what preexisting material was it produced (analysis)? Don’t know.
  5. In what original form was it produced (integrity)? Don’t know.
  6. What is the evidential value of its contents (credibility)? Don’t know.

Based on the above. We don’t know much anything about the date, localization, authorship, analysis, integrity or credibility.

Further, all the accounts of the Gospels conflict with each other. This is often argued by apologist using the analogy of eyewitnesses to a car accident reporting slightly different stories. Sounds good on the surface but this isn’t what we are dealing with concerning the Gospels. These are huge differences that any reasonable person could not possible get wrong. If a detective was talking to these “witnesses” he would throw them in the drunk tank and let them sober up.

contradiction

 

What about extra-biblical evidence for the historicity of Jesus?

There is none. No contemporary historian in the area wrote about Jesus. All extra biblical evidence is from historians after Jesus’ death reporting hearsay from Christians or what they could have read in the New Testament. Most of the evidence they provide is for the existence of Christians. Nothing on any fact or act about Jesus’ life.

timeline

What about archeological evidence for Jesus or his followers?

There is none.

What about archeological evidence for Caesar?

We have coins dated to his lifetime:

coins

We have busts made during his lifetime:

bust

We have no such things for Jesus or his followers.

What about literary sources for Caesar?

  1. Diodorus Siculus (1st century BCE)
  2. Quintus Curtius Rufus (1st century CE)
  3. Plutarch (2nd century CE)
  4. Flavius Arrianus Xenophon (Arrian) (2nd century CE)
  5. M. Junianus Justinus (Justin) (3rd century CE)

How are they different than the Gospel writers?

The authors are not anonymous and they cite their multiple sources. We know who they are, when they lived, what they did. They wrote not just about one man, but many different men. We can judge their credibility based on their work. They didn’t write with the sole purpose of convincing people about the life and times of Caesar.

Further, they didn’t try to cram history into a literary style or structure like the Gospel writers.  For instance the “Markan Sandwich:”

A. Cursing of the fig tree
B. Clearing of the temple
A. Withering of the fig tree

The chances of actual history fitting into Markan Sandwiches is close to nil. These are used throughout Mark and encompass the entirety of Mark.

 

 

 

Does Atheism Make People Superstitious?

No.

More on the delusional Christian that wrecked the Ten Commandments Monument

More on the Christian who drove is car into the Ten Commandments monument in Oklahoma City and then urinated on it.

At least twice now, Michael Tate Reed II has purged himself of all his belongings, setting them outside his home for anyone to take.

“I’m going to Bible college,” Reed wrote in a Facebook post in August last year, “and God told me to give away my stuff and to trust in him to supply all my needs according to ‘His’ riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

…His first major mental health breakdown would come when Reed locked himself in one of the CityPlex Towers, the tall golden buildings near Oral Roberts University in Tulsa. He told his friends and family he needed to shut down the building’s electricity because he wanted to see something.

Reed had come to equate light to his religion, saying that God was light, Lynch said.

“…there was a thunderstorm. He was convinced it was following him. Reed told his friends and family that he needed to protect them, and he left.”

“he wrecked his newer model Chevrolet Camaro. He told his mother that there had been someone sitting in the seat next to him, telling him to wreck his car.”

http://newsok.com/oklahoma-man-accused-of-damaging-ten-commandments-monument-struggles-with-mental-illness-family-says/article/5362701