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I Know the Resurrection Happened Because Jesus Lives in My Heart

I was discussing the lack of evidence for the dating of Jesus’ birth, death, and alleged resurrection with a Christian relative last night. After I reviewed all the evidence (or lack thereof) my relative said matter-of-factly:

“I don’t care. I know that Jesus was resurrected because he lives in my heart.”

And there you go. That is why discussing historical evidence with Christians is a waste of time.

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If God Wanted Us To Know the Date of The Resurrection, We Would!

Gary: On what date did the Resurrection occur? Thanks.

Scott, Christian blog author: Hello Gary, Using Daniel’s Seventy Weeks it seems like April 5 A.D. 33 is the date of Jesus’s resurrection.

Gary: “It seems” sounds like you are guessing.

Three hours of total darkness, a great earthquake, the veil of the Holy of Holies rips down the middle, angels descend from heaven to appear to and talk to several people, dozens if not hundreds of graves are shaken open, the dead in those graves come back to life and walk the streets of a major city of the Roman empire, God the Creator rises from the dead and appears to over 500 people, often in large groups and then levitates into the clouds in front of one of those groups…yet… no one bothered to record the date of this earth-shattering event. Don’t you find that odd?

Scott: Yes, I said “seems,” because we don’t know for sure. Here’s one article on a site I trust explaining the dilemma: How is the date for Easter determined?.

The date of Jesus’s resurrection is insignificant, compared to the reality of the Resurrection. If God wanted us to know the date, we would. What matters is that it happened versus when it happens.

Gary: Christians don’t know the exact date or even the year of the birth of their Lord and Savior, the King of Kings, the ruler of the universe? Mary, his mother, either didn’t bother to tell anyone in the Church, the Church didn’t find his birth date that important and forgot, or she forgot. All of those options seems very unlikely. If the Romans could remember the exact birthdates of their kings (Caesars), I would think Christians would consider it important to remember theirs.

But maybe you are right. Maybe Jesus’ birth date is not important. But surely the exact date of his death and resurrection would be remembered, right? But, no. Christians do not know the dates of these two events either. They are forced to guess. Why?

We are not talking about the Stone Age. People kept records in the first century. Christians claim that first century Jews were meticulous record keepers. Allegedly they remembered several of Jesus’ very long sermons word for word and recorded them in the Gospels. So are we really to believe that these meticulous record keepers forgot to record the birthdate, date of death, and most importantly of all, the date of the Resurrection??? Come on, Scott. If any other religion made such fantastical claims about their god, but couldn’t provide records that demonstrate the exact year of these alleged events, you would laugh and hand wave away their preposterous claims. Why would you do that? Answer: Because their story has all the markings of a legend!

So why do you believe these Christian stories? They too have all the markings of legends. Jesus may well have existed, but the stories about him found in the Gospels are most likely legends (tall tales).

Just say NO to superstitions!

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If Christians Could Provide Witnesses and the Date of Jesus’ Birth, Would You Believe?

Gary: Why don’t Christians know the exact date of Jesus’ birth?

Jane (Christian): So if there was a recorded date for Jesus’ birth and there were eyewitnesses to this event, would you then believe? Would that be enough for you?

Gary: If there was a recorded date and eyewitnesses to Mohammad’s trip into heaven on the back of a horse with wings, would that be enough for you to believe this event really happened? Would that be enough for you to become a Muslim?

Of course not.

Stupid question, but Christians ask such questions all the time.

Would any rational person believe a cow abduction by space aliens or any other fantastical claim just because a few nut cases claim they all saw it and can give a date it allegedly occurred?? Of course not.

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Theologian Roger Olson Explains Why Christians Don’t Know the Birth Date of Jesus

Gary: Why don’t Christians know the true date of Jesus’ birth?

Roger Olson: I guess that record wasn’t recorded or kept; it must not have been considered that important. I don’t recall any church father suggesting a date. Also, dating as we know it now was not the same then.

Gary:

-Alexander the Great was born July 20th or 21st, 356 BCE

-Tiberius Caesar was born November 16, 42 BCE

-Caesar Caligula was born August 31, 12 CE

-Caesar Claudius was born August 1, 10 BCE

-Caesar Nero was born December 15, 37 CE

Yet Christians don’t remember the day, month, or even year of the birth of the “King of Kings”. Don’t you find that really odd? Mary, the mother of Jesus, allegedly lived to old age with John the Apostle in Ephesus. But she never bothered to tell John the date of birth of the Savior of humankind? John never asked? John could remember and recorded multiple of Jesus’ long sermons word for word, but never recorded the date of his birth (death, or resurrection!). I thought first century Jews were meticulous about keeping records.

Roger Olson: What’s your point? I don’t understand what this has to do with what I wrote. Please stick to the subject and avoid chasing rabbits.

Gary:

From your post: For me, Advent means that God literally became human while remaining God and that his humanity was not a disguise but who he became and was and is.

But what if there is evidence that Advent (the celebratory season of the birth of Jesus the Christ, God the Creator) is a legend? If so, Jesus was born a human, died a human, and is still dead as a human. The Creator God never came to earth in human form. There was no angelic appearance to Jesus’ mother; there was no divine impregnation/conception involving a “Holy Spirit”; there was no angelic appearance to shepherds; no wise men came to visit him guided by a magical star.

What is this evidence? Answer: According to the Bible, Mary received a visit from an angel telling her that she would soon conceive a son, not with a human father, but with God himself as the child’s father. Her son would be the the King of Kings, the Messiah, who would save her people from their sins. At his birth, she witnessed shepherds called to visit her and the child by angels. When visiting the Temple for her purification, a prophet and prophetess foretold that her child would be the Messiah. A few years later she and the child were visited by three kings from the East. Shortly after they left, another angel appeared to Joseph her husband warning them to flee to Egypt as Herod, the king, was about to kill very male child under two in Bethlehem. During Jesus’ life she witnessed many of his miracles, such as turning water into wine. She witnessed his crucifixion. She witnessed the Empty Tomb. She was with her son, James, during the early days after the establishment of the Jerusalem church, a church James would soon become the bishop of. Church tradition then tells us, that Mary lived out her later years living with John the Apostle in Ephesus.

Yet, during all this time, no one ever asked Mary the date of birth of the King of Kings and recorded it? Not one single person? The date of birth of God the Creator come to earth in human form was either never recorded, forgotten by later generations of Christians, or Mary forgot. Seriously? Mary forgot the birthdate of her son…GOD???

Not believable! The fact that the birth date of Jesus was not recorded is strong evidence that the entire virgin birth story is a LEGEND. Jesus may have lived and died by crucifixion. Some of his disciples may have believed that he appeared to them in some form after his death, but the story of a virginal conception and a birth in a manger accompanied by angels (space aliens) is in all probability fiction. What would be the first question you would ask someone of another religion if they told you a similar, fantastical, supernatural laden story? Answer: “Exactly when did this occur (the date)?” If they couldn’t give you the exact date, you would scoff at their preposterous supernatural claims. So why do you accept this Christian legend as historical fact, Roger? (Is it because you believe you have a personal relationship with this 20 century deceased man/god?)

And what about the recorded dates of Jesus’ death and resurrection?? Oh, but that is off topic. Maybe another time.

For the rest of the discussion (if Olson allows it to continue. He is a little cantankerous) click here on Olson blog post.

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Christmas: Why Don’t Christians Know the True Date of Jesus’ Birth?

Isn’t it odd that Christians don’t know the true date of Jesus’ birth? As I’m sure you know, Jesus was not born in December. December 25th is the winter solstice, an old pagan holiday which the Catholic Church adopted as the symbolic birthdate of their Savior.

Think about this: If after Jesus’ death, his mother, Mary, lived with John the son of Zebedee in Ephesus until her death, as Christian tradition claims, wouldn’t you think that she would have told John or one of the other disciples/authors of the Gospels the date of birth of Jesus, the Savior of the world, the Creator of the universe? Wouldn’t at least one disciple, evangelist, bishop, or other church leader ask her for this information? And get this: one of the disciples was a tax collector. Aren’t tax collectors known for keeping good records? Yet, not even the author of the Gospel of Matthew, allegedly the Apostle Matthew, a tax collector, records the date of birth of the King of Kings.

But that’s not all.

Incredibly, Christians also don’t know the dates of the death and resurrection of Jesus, the two greatest events in Christianity, and according to Christians, the two greatest events in the history of humankind! His resurrection from the dead was allegedly accompanied by some of the most fantastical supernatural events ever claimed in human history: Post-death appearances to over 500 people, a great earthquake, three hours of darkness, angels descending from heaven, the temple veil torn in two, dozens if not hundreds of graves torn open, their occupants shaken back to life to roam the streets of a major city of the Roman empire…yet no one bothered to record the date of these earth-shattering events!!! Very, very, very odd, my friends.

These stories have all the characteristics of legends.

legend: a traditional story sometimes popularly regarded as historical but unauthenticated, such as “the legend of King Arthur”.

Jesus may well have been a real historical figure, but tales of his virginal birth attended by angels (space aliens) and multiple sightings of his walking, talking, broiled fish eating corpse are not even remotely credible without record of the dates of these alleged events. Dear Christians: You would not believe similar undated tall tales from another world religion, so why do you believe Christianity’s fantastical, undated, supernatural tall tales?

Just say NO to superstitions.

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If the Apostles Faithfully Passed Down The Jesus Story, Why Did They Forget the Date of the Resurrection?

How odd.

Conservative Christians tell us that the apostles, the original followers of Jesus, carefully preserved the words and deeds of Jesus. Two of the apostles authored two of the Gospels and two close associates of the apostles wrote the other two Gospels. John Mark, the author of the first Gospel, received his information directly from Jesus’ chief disciple, Peter. And Luke the physician, the author of the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts, received his information directly from the Apostle Paul.

Wow. That’s pretty good eyewitness testimony, isn’t it?

But something is odd, friends. Very odd. In all this eyewitness testimony, everyone forgot to write down the date of the greatest event to occur in human history: the resurrection from the dead of Jesus, the Creator of the universe!

Oops!

Why would a group of people who meticulously recorded the words and deeds of Jesus forget the date of his resurrection? It just doesn’t make sense. Were they idiots? Were they complete morons? Yes, most of them were “unlearned” fishermen, but at least one of them was a tax collector and literate; he (allegedly) wrote the Gospel of Matthew. Aren’t tax collectors known for being meticulous about recording important dates and facts? But, nope. No one recorded the date or even the year of this earth-shattering event.

Conclusion: The Resurrection is a legend. A tall tale.

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Why Don’t Christians Know the Date of the Resurrection of Jesus?

Get this: God the Creator, maker of heaven and earth, comes to earth in human form. He is personally convicted by a Roman governor of treason against Caesar. He is publicly crucified in a major city of the Roman empire. At the moment of his death, in the middle of the day, there is three hours of darkness. At the same time, the temple veil in the Holy of Holies, the most sacred site in Judaism, splits down the middle. God the Creator is then buried in the tomb of a member of the Jewish Sanhedrin, the highest authority in the Jewish nation. Three days later, a great earthquake shakes dozens, maybe hundreds, of dead people out of their graves to roam the city. And that same day, at the break of dawn, the grave of God the Creator is found empty. Hours later, God the Creator, in supernatural form, makes the first of several appearances to his followers. The number of eyewitnesses to these appearances will exceed five hundred people!

Yet… no one bothered to record the date or even the year of this earth-shattering event!

“But people weren’t big on recording dates in Antiquity” Christians may say.

Really?

They recorded the date an earthly ruler, Julius Caesar, was murdered: March 15, 44 BC

They recorded the date an earthly ruler, Caesar Augustus, died: August 19, 14 CE.

They recorded the date the middle wall of Jerusalem was breached by Roman general, Titus, leading to the destruction of the Jewish temple: June 5, 70 CE

They recorded the date Mount Vesuvius erupted and destroyed a city, Pompeii: August 24, 79 CE

But they didn’t bother to record the date, nor even the year, when God the Creator was publicly executed nor the date when he resurrected himself from the dead! Why not??? Answer: Because this event never happened, folks! It is a legend.

This is the best evidence against the historicity of the alleged resurrection of Jesus. If these dramatic, earth-shattering events had really happened, someone would have recorded the date. But no one did!

The Resurrection is an ancient superstition. It is not history. A major world religion was founded on a fictional event. How silly.

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Christians Have Zero Credible Eyewitness Statements to the Alleged Resurrection

Conservative Christian: You subjectively deny the testimonial evidence of over 300 witnesses who saw Christ Jesus alive, drinking and eating with them, and nobody to date has proven that the Roman soldiers had no idea what death looks like, especially given the “swooning” theory in the midst of the testimony that the soldiers pierced His side up into the heart sack (proving He was dead).

So, try if you can, to disprove eyewitness testimony that most rational people accept at varying levels of trust. The testimony of Christ’s resurrection has a level of consistency across enough witnesses to render your doubts as being more irrational than rational.

What say you?

Gary: Christians love to claim that they have eyewitness testimony from multiple eyewitnesses to multiple alleged sightings of a resurrected Jesus. But do they? Just because someone claims to be an eyewitness doesn’t mean they are. Just because someone claims to possess an eyewitness statement from an eyewitness doesn’t mean they do.

Certain criteria must be met to consider someone’s testimony as “eyewitness testimony”:

(1) The identity of the alleged witness can be verified.
(2) The alleged witness can provide the date or approximate date of the event in question.
(3) The alleged witness can provide an oral or written statement as to what he or she saw.
(4) Third parties can verify that the oral or written statement presented actually comes from the witness and that there has been no opportunity for the testimony to have been edited, supplemented, or invented by someone else.
(5) The eyewitness status of the alleged eyewitness is not contradicted by strong evidence presented by experts (for instance, if experts can provide strong evidence that the alleged eyewitness was 1,000 miles away when the event took place, that greatly weakens the witness’ claim that he is an eyewitness).

The resurrection and post-death appearance stories in the Gospels do no meet these very basic standards for eyewitness testimony.

Mormonism has much better eyewitness testimony, by far, than traditional Christianity. At least Mormons have multiple persons, whose identities are unquestioned, who signed legal documents (affidavits) claiming to have witnessed a supernatural event. THAT is eyewitness testimony, in sharp contrast to the collection of rumors and hearsay found in the Gospels.

Christians are unable to provide any credible eyewitness testimony of anyone in the first century claiming to have seen the walking, talking, broiled-fish eating resurrected corpse of Jesus of Nazareth. The Resurrection Story is a tall tale started by a small group of superstitious first century peasants that has mushroomed into the most widely believed superstition in human history.

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Thanksgiving: I am Thankful for a God-Free Universe

It’s that time of year again. It’s time to be thankful for the good things in life. But unlike when I was younger (and religious/superstitious), I now give thanks to human progress, not to some invisible (imaginary) being in the sky.

One only has to read the history books to see the countless millions who have suffered from the consequences of belief in the supernatural. Human sacrifices and witch burnings. The oppression of women and minorities. Assigning blame to human “sin” for disease, famine, droughts, the death of a child, and other tragedies.

So let’s be thankful this Thanksgiving. Let’s be thankful that belief in gods and devils is dying in the educated West. Let’s hope (not pray) that more of humanity will be exposed to the true Good News: the joy of life without the fear of capricious gods.

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Adults Should Not Have Invisible Friends

If a grown adult tells you that he has an invisible friend with whom he regularly communicates, you are likely to refer him to the local mental health clinic. Yet millions of educated, evangelical Christians all over the world claim to communicate on a daily basis with an invisible friend; an invisible friend with unlimited supernatural powers; an invisible friend who fulfills their wish list requests and even performs magical health recoveries for them.

This irrational, silly belief should no longer be given any social respectability whatsoever. There is no good evidence that invisible beings exist. Human beings do not have “personal relationships” with ghosts/spirits. This silly belief should be denounced and mocked for what it is: superstitious nonsense.

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