The Instigator
Dave_82
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
1dustpelt
Pro (for)
Winning
5 Points

Is there enough extrabiblical evidence to support the idea of a historical Jesus?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
1dustpelt
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/13/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,403 times Debate No: 21978
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (2)

 

Dave_82

Con

I do not believe there was a historical Jesus, but I could never really prove that position, so instead of saying there was never a Jesus, I will say that there is not enough supporting evidence to justify a belief in a historical Jesus. R1 for acceptance, no new arguments during R5, only rebuttals.
1dustpelt

Pro

I accept. I will argue that Jesus existed. You, as the instigator, have the Burden of Proof.
Debate Round No. 1
Dave_82

Con

I do not believe that Jesus existed for the simple reason that there was nothing at all written about him during his supposed time on Earth. The earliest of the gospels to be written was Matthew, and that wasn't wriiten until the year 70 CE. Every supposed document about Jesus comes after the year 100 and very few even mention him by name(1). People just assume the texts are about Jesus because of the surrounding context. It is illogical to assume that if someone was going around performing all these miracles and coming back from the dead that people would wait a century or more to write about him. The reason I put in the resolution that the evidence has to be extrabiblical is because historians don't accept the bible as a historically accurate source of information (2). I have used religious sources so that the informaton I provide is that much more acceptable to those who disagree with me.
1. http://www.westarkchurchofchrist.org...
2. http://www.levitt.com...
1dustpelt

Pro

I will begin.

Who is the Historical Jesus?
The historical Jesus is the Jesus that existed throughout history. What I have to prove to win this debate is that Jesus existed. I don't have to prove that he did any miracles, just that he existed.

Rebuttals
"I do not believe that Jesus existed for the simple reason that there was nothing at all written about him during his supposed time on Earth"
There are historical records and writing to prove his existence. Your statement is false as I will prove later.

"The earliest of the gospels to be written was Matthew, and that wasn't wriiten until the year 70 CE. Every supposed document about Jesus comes after the year 100 and very few even mention him by name(1)."
Actually not. There are many records before 100 AD as I will prove later.

"People just assume the texts are about Jesus because of the surrounding context. It is illogical to assume that if someone was going around performing all these miracles and coming back from the dead that people would wait a century or more to write about him."
People did not wait untill a century later to write about him. Besides, I just have to prove his existence, not his miracles.

Proof of the Historical Jesus
Roman historian Cornelius Tacitus recorded about Jesus in 115 A.D. He wrote about the great fire of Rome.
Jewish historian Flavius Josephus makes two references to Jesus. The first reference is believed associated with the Apostle James. These historical writings predated the Old Testament. Josephus died in 97 A.D. Thallus also wrote about the crucifixion of Jesus. His writing date was around 52 A.D. These are just a few of the many records.

Conclusion
There are so many historical records to the existence of Jesus.

Sources
http://dmc.members.sonic.net...
http://www.probe.org...; http://www.garyhabermas.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Dave_82

Con

I claimed that nothing was written about him during his lifetime, but Pro didn't deny this. In fact, he all but admitted this because the earliest text he cited was 52 CE. Tacitus wrote not about Jesus, but someone named Christus,(1) which is a Greek name, not Hebrew. It's one of the texts I mentioned that people assume was about Jesus because of the surrounding context. As to the Testimonium Flavinium, it has been shown several times over the years to be a fraud (2). Also, it's about more than just the lack of writings. There is absolutely no physical evidence whatsoever. No writing by him, no works of carpentry, no artifacts, nothing (3). As far as Thallus, we know nothing about him or his works. The only info we have, including his name, is the invention of 2nd century Christians. In conclusion, when examining a claim for which there is no evidence, the automatic position is disbelief.
1. http://dmc.members.sonic.net...
2. http://www.truthbeknown.com...
3. http://www.noefs.com...
4. http://www.infidels.org...
1dustpelt

Pro

"Tacitus wrote not about Jesus, but someone named Christus,(1) which is a Greek name, not Hebrew."
Christus is Jesus. Christus means Christ. If not than why is the Catholic greeting, "Laudetur Jesus Christus"?

"As to the Testimonium Flavinium, it has been shown several times over the years to be a fraud"
The common reaction is, �€œThis was a FORGERY!!�€� or �€œJosephus was a FRAUD!!�€� But most people criticizing the validity this passage �€" or the reliability of Josephus as a historian �€" don�€™t know too much about it. They are repeating the widely accepted conclusion that this passage on Jesus from Josephus�€™ Antiquities may have been interpolated due to two suspicious phrases that make Josephus sound like a Christian. The consensus is that a Christian scribe may have tried to elucidate Josephus for his Christian audience.

Contrary to what you might hear, the passage is judged authentic by most scholars once the perceived Christian additions are removed. And whether the passage has been altered greatly or with just a few minor words or phrases added, Josephus�€™ references to Jesus, James and John the Baptist are an authentic witness that validates first century Gospel stories. Read the whole article that proves it to be true, http://www.forerunner.com....

"Also, it's about more than just the lack of writings. There is absolutely no physical evidence whatsoever. No writing by him, no works of carpentry, no artifacts, nothing"
There has been physical evidence. Here is just one, quoting CNN.

"A limestone burial box, almost 2,000 years old, may provide the oldest archeological record of Jesus of Nazareth, according to several experts who announced the finding Monday.The ossuary, as the bone boxes are known, dates to A.D. 63 and has an inscription in Aramaic which translates to: "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus," said Andre Lemaire, an expert in ancient writing who identified the writing on the box in Jerusalem last spring."
If the buired person(James) was brother of Jesus, then Jesus must have existed.

"As far as Thallus, we know nothing about him or his works. The only info we have, including his name, is the invention of 2nd century Christians."
Thallus was a historian who wrote about the Eastern Mediteranian since the Trojan War. Who would take the time to fake a Thallus, he has too many other works to be a fake.

http://articles.cnn.com...
http://creation.com...
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://www.forerunner.com...
Debate Round No. 3
Dave_82

Con

Dave_82 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
Dave_82

Con

Dave_82 forfeited this round.
1dustpelt

Pro

Vote PRO.
Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Dave_82 4 years ago
Dave_82
The fourth source was about Thallus. I forgot to number it in the argument.
Posted by ahopele 4 years ago
ahopele
I don't think any sources referencing Jesus can be reliable. There are absolutely no eyewitness accounts of him. All accounts of Jesus come after his death which supposedly occured around 29AD-33AD. So I find it suspicious that nobody bothered to write anything about a man who performed miracles while he was actually alive. He may of existed, but until there's reliable evidence, the default position is disbelief.
Posted by AdamDeben 4 years ago
AdamDeben
Jesus has the same story as Horus, the Egyptian sun god. Born of a virgin on December 25th, performed miracles, had 12 of something (Jesus had followers I forget what Horus had), died and was resurrected on the third day.
Also, in some depictions, Jesus' head is at the intersection of the cross, making a circle. The pagan sun symbol is a cross with a circle on the intersection. There are 12 ages in Astrology (Aquarius, Cancer, and all that stuff). When winter begins every year, the sun gets lower and lower for 3 days (dies) and then suddenly gets higher on the third (resurrected). In conclusion, Jesus was the sun all along! This wasn't very well organized, but hopefully you can get the gist. The first Zeitgeist Movie covers this a lot better.
Posted by KeytarHero 4 years ago
KeytarHero
Yeah, I've heard there was someone (I forget who) who got his MA after using 17 non-Biblical sources to prove the resurrection of Christ (or something like that). I'm sure the sources are there.
Posted by 1dustpelt 4 years ago
1dustpelt
There are enough records to prove his existence.
Posted by Microsuck 4 years ago
Microsuck
How does one determine what is "enough extrabiblical evidence"
Posted by KeytarHero 4 years ago
KeytarHero
This debate is misleading. The resolution should be a statement, but it should read: There is enough historical evidence to support Jesus was a historical figure. Historians can use the Gospels because they were separate accounts written by separate individuals. They were men who wrote about Jesus, and they have historical value. No serious historian doubts there actually was a Jesus, what they doubt is whether Jesus did miracles. They believe there's historical value in the Gospels, just that the writers exaggerated some things.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Zaradi 4 years ago
Zaradi
Dave_821dustpeltTied
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Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
Dave_821dustpeltTied
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Reasons for voting decision: FF