The Instigator
stubsmagee
Pro (for)
Winning
16 Points
The Contender
xxx200
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

It is more probably that the historical figure Jesus was in fact God than he was not

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/28/2011 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 978 times Debate No: 18522
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (4)

 

stubsmagee

Pro

First round is for acceptance only and clarification of rules. Both of us share equal b.o.p in showing our position is more probable than the other.
xxx200

Con

definations


god = a supreme being with almost endless power in any form

jesus = a historical figure, founder of christian religion.


Debate Round No. 1
stubsmagee

Pro

1. Who wrote the gospels?
a. The uniform testimony of the early church was Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. If those four men were not the original authors you must explain the early church saying they did.

2. Reason to lie about who wrote the gospels?
a. Craig L Blomberg, PH.D. "Probably not. Remember these were unlikely characters. Mark and Luke weren't even in the twelve disciples. Matthew was, but as a former tax collector, he would have been the most infamous character next to Judas Iscariot […] Contrast this with what happened when the fanciful apocryphal gospels were written much later. People chose the names of well-known and exemplary figures to be their fictitious authors-Phillip, Peter, Mary, James […] So to answer your question, there would not have been any reason to attribute the authorship to these three less respected people if it weren't true." (p.23) Now John was an exception, and he is the one most disputed over!

3. More evidence for Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John
a. In A.D 125 Papias said Mark "made no mistake" and made "no false statement"
b. In A.D 180 Irenaeus confirmed authorship.

4. Did Jesus claim to be God?
a. One of significance. Jesus refers to Himself as the Son of Man. Son of Man does not refer to Jesus' humanity. It refers to the Son of Man in Daniel 7:13-14 "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, and nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed" Jesus claims to forgive sins, which only God can do. He accepts prayer and worship.

5. Gospels written too far after Jesus died to be accurate?
a. Most believe the gospels were written 70-90A.D
b. There are two issues
i. Even if there was no evidence that the books were written earlier than the dates I previously provided the argument doesn't work because that is still within the lifetimes of hostile eyewitnesses if false teachings began spreading. We can compare biographies of Jesus those of Alexander the Great.
ii. "The two earliest biographies of Alexander the Great were written by Arrian and Plutarch more than four hundred years after Alexander's death in 323 B.C., yet historians consider them to be generally trustworthy. Yes, legendary material about Alexander did develop over time, but it was only in the centuries after these two writers. In other words, the first five hundred years kept Alexander's story pretty much intact; legendary material began to emerge over the next five hundred years. So whether the gospels were written sixty years or thirty years after the life of Jesus, the amount of time is negligible by comparison. It's almost a nonissue" (p.33)
My second issue is there is evidence that suggest earlier dating of the gospels. If we read Acts, which was written by Luke, Paul is the main character. All of a sudden the book ends when Paul is under house arrest in Rome. So why is that? Well the best answer would be that Paul must have still been alive when Acts was finished. Meaning that Acts could have been written no later than 62 A.D. This also means that Luke had to have been written before that and since Luke incorporates parts of Mark, that must have been even earlier. (p.34)

6. Paul on Jesus
a. "For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles." I Corinthians 15
b. Crucifixion was as early as 30 A.D. meaning Paul's conversion was 32 A.D. He was sent out and his first meeting with the apostles was about 35 A.D. Somewhere in between that time, he gave this creed.

7. Corroborating Evidence
a. Tacitus said, "Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Chrisus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one on our procurators, Pontius Pilatus […] Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty: then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind" (p.82)
b. Yamauchi (PHD) "Regardless of whether the passage had this specifically in mind, it does provide us with the remarkable fact, which is this: crucifixion was the most abhorrent fate that anyone could undergo, and the fact that there was a movement based on a crucified man has to be explained. How can you explain the spread of a religion based on the worship of a man who had suffered the most ignominious death possible? Of course, the Christian answer is that he was resurrected. Others have to come up with some alternative theory […] but none of the alternative views, to my mind, are very persuasive." (p.82)

8. Resurrection
a. Skeptics say when the gospels say Jesus began to sweat blood, it was their imagination. Alexander Metherell, M.D, Ph.D. said "This is a known medical condition called hematidrosis […] it is associated with high degree of psychological stress." (p.195)
b. "The spear apparently went through the right lung and into the heart […] some fluid-the pericardial effusion and the pleural effusion-came out. This would have the appearance of a clear fluid, like water, followed by a large volume of blood, as the eyewitness John described in his gospel!" (p.199)
c. There was no doubt that Jesus was dead

9. Jesus' Body missing from the tomb?
a. William Craig PH.D.,D.TH., "If this burial by Joseph was a legend that developed later, you'd expect to find other competing burial traditions about what happened to Jesus' body. However, you don't find these at all." (p.210)
b. "There was a slanted groove that led down to a lower entrance, and a large disk-shaped stone was rolled down this groove and lodged into place across the door. A smaller stone was then used to secure the disk. Although it would be easy to roll this big disk down the groove, it would take several men to roll the stone back up in order to reopen the tomb" (p.211)
c. "There's no doubt that the disciples sincerely believed the truth of the Resurrection, which they proclaimed to their deaths. The idea that the empty tomb is the result of some hoax, conspiracy, or theft is simply dismissed today." (p.212)
d. From these quotes we se be sure that Jesus was buried in the tomb, the tomb was protected, the disciples believed the resurrection to the point of death, and no one could have stole the body.
e. Gospel accounts are too inconsistent? Historian Michael Grant, in a book called Jesus: An historian's review of the Gospels says, "True, the discovery of the empty tomb is differently described by the various gospels, but if we apply the same sort of criteria that we would apply to any other ancient literary sources, then the evidence is firm and plausible enough to necessitate the conclusion that the tomb was, indeed, found empty."

10. Disciples lie about Resurrection?
a. "The apostles were willing to die for something they had seen with their own eyes and touched with their own hands. They were in a unique position not to just believe Jesus rose from the dead but to know for sure. And when you've got eleven credible people with no ulterior motives, with nothing to gain and a lot to lose, who all agree they observed something with their own eyes-now you've got some difficulty explaining that away" (p.247)

Case for Christ - Lee Strobel
xxx200

Con

defination

god = a being having supreme endless power in any form.

1] it is irrelevant who wrote gospels. if gospels are not contradictery, then it should be accepted as true.

2] jesus has the power to forsee future. he said "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven.He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, and nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed". whatever he said in this prophecy came true later on. nearly all the world become christian.still the kingdom of christianity prevails. this is a proof of jesus's miraculous power.


3] now the accuracy of gospel. according to you, the time when gospels are written, spreading false teaching might cause death.this shows that gospels cannot be false or inaccurate.

in your second issue you said that suddenly the acts ends when paul was in house arrest in rome. you found the reason could be, in your words,"Paul must have still been alive when Acts was finished." well from where you come to know this fact/reason? you have not mentioned any source.

so gospels are accurate.

4] any court of law will believe in the witness of such person who has nothing to loose, nothing to gain, just like our apostles.why? because this kind of persons are impartial or lacks partiality. they have no power to harm the judicial proceeding. the courts believe in this kind of person and so do i.

conclusion:

jesus has power to forsee the future.he resurrected and whatever is written in gospel about him was true. since he has miraculous power and a form, he is god.
Debate Round No. 2
stubsmagee

Pro

You took the con side of this debate therefore you are supposed to be arguing that Jesus is not God. All you did was agree with my arguments that Jesus is God.
xxx200

Con

sorry, i just wanted to show you what are the relavant facts to prove jesus was a god. now here comes my argument:


1] the body of jesus was not found in the tomb, doesn't mean that he was resurrected. if a man's body was missing, it doesn't imply that he was resurrected. it may be stolen or disposed off to show miraculous power of jesus.apostles may lie.

2] there are many advice in gospel which is impractical i.e. it is impossible to follow those in practice. for example: love your enemy, if someone slapped in your left chick turn another chick.so this shows that jesus may not have any knowledge of the real world. this is not a charactaristics of a god.

3] jesus cannot save himself from romans and jews. this shows that he did not have any power like god. he was just a healer and nothing else.

4]the prophecy jesus made that "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, and nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed." came true. this only shows that jesus had some power of telling the future. but this does not make him god. god has endless supreme power. jesus only had limited power.

5] where in these days, jesus christ ? christians worship him like god but he did not save his followers in modern day from suffering. in fact christians suffer more than non christians: 2 world wars, several gulf wars, terrorism, economic crisis. where is jesus christ in these days?

conclusion:

jesus christ has no endless supreme power. so he did not fit in our defination of god who has supreme and endless power.
Debate Round No. 3
stubsmagee

Pro

William Craig PH.D.,D.TH. "There's no doubt that the disciples sincerely believed the truth of the Resurrection, which they proclaimed to their deaths. The idea that the empty tomb is the result of some hoax, conspiracy, or theft is simply dismissed today." (p.212)

Also there is good evidence to believe there was guards at the tomb even though Matthew is the only gospel that says there was. This is because the Jews were the ones who said the guards fell asleep. If there was no guards, the Jews obviously would have initially claimed there were no guards.

I already addressed why the apostles wouldnt lie but I will post it again. ""The apostles were willing to die for something they had seen with their own eyes and touched with their own hands. They were in a unique position not to just believe Jesus rose from the dead but to know for sure. And when you've got eleven credible people with no ulterior motives, with nothing to gain and a lot to lose, who all agree they observed something with their own eyes-now you've got some difficulty explaining that away" (p.247)

Your point about the gospel being impractical is first off, wrong and second it is irrelevant.

Jesus could have saved Himself from crucifiction but chose not to because as He prayed just before His death He said, "not my will but your will" meaning the father.

The scripture from daniel shows that Jesus claimed to be God. The point wasn't that He could tell the future. Jesus chose not to use all the powers and have all the knowledge He could have. That is a basic Christian belief.

Jesus even said himself that Christians would suffer more for being Christian. He also said to be glad for being persecute because of faith.

Suffering
All suffering comes from sin and evil. You might say why did God create sin and evil? Well, God didn't create sin, it came into the world when He gave humans free choice and they disobeyed Him. You might ask why didn't God just create humans to always choose good? Well think about if you pushed a button on a Barbie and every time it said, "I love you" How meaningful is that I love you? God did create potential for evil but it only came into being when we rejected God's ways.
You may then ask didn't God know about the potential consequences of free choice? Well think about any relationship you have had. Even if its just a friendship isn't there a chance that your friend is going to hurt you or walk away completely? However, you still make friendships knowing there is that potential.
Think about the famous story of the bear, the hunter, and God. Your walking in the woods and a bear has his leg stuck in a trap. You go to help the bear but every time you get close he things you are going to hurt him so he fights you. Then you have to shoot him with a tranquilizer gun. Now he really thinks you are out to hurt him. Then to get his leg out of the trap you have to push it in deeper to release the tension on the spring. If the bear was even conscious he would ask all the more, "Why are you making me suffer." Now, how can you be sure it is not like that with God?
The most extreme suffering was Jesus dyeing on the cross and, from a Christian perspective we see the good that came out of that.
You might say well why do evil people hurt other and get away with it. Well the fact is the Bible says they won't get away. While a skeptic would most likely not accept that they would say, "Well if God could stop suffering why doesn't he do it right now." I would tell them they are. In 2 Peter 3:9 it says, "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." He is delaying everything because of his love for us.
xxx200

Con

in this debate 2 things are relevant:

1] the defination of god i.e. god= a being with supreme power in any form.

2] if jesus fits in the defination of god or not

all other things are irrelavant.

if jesus fits in the defination of god, then he is the god, if not then he is a historical figure.

the point that gospels are impractical, is not only relevant but also important because everything we know about jesus, we know from gospels.if gospels are wrong, then our knowledge about jesus will also be wrong.

the diciple, the apostles would not lie. this is your point. you support it with the help of an author named william craig, phd,dth. i don't understand why should i believe this man.therefore resurrection is not true.

you said that jesus has all the power but he choose not to use them.how are you so sure about it? therefore jesus may not have all the power.

you said jesus could save himself but he choose the wish of his father the god.why? don't you think it is the nature of every being that it always want to save itself?
therefore gospels are impractical because it always contains things that are contradictory, impractical, anti natural, abnormal.for example why should anybody love his/her enemy? or why should anyone will not protect himself if he has the ability to do so?

your point of suffering is irrelavant because suffering is not the element of defination of god.neither it is related to any element of the defination

therfore we find the following facts:

1] resuurection is not true.

2] jesus may not have all the power.

3] gospels are impractical

conclusion: jesus has no supreme power, therefore, he is just a mere historical figure.
Debate Round No. 4
stubsmagee

Pro

if Jesus fits in the denifition of God, then He is God, if not then He is a historical figure"
- The problem with that statement is Jesus was a historical figure and He is God

I also do not believe that the gospels are impractical. It is what God has called us to do. You used the example of turning the other cheek and said it is impractical. Why is it impractical? Have you never done it? Or do you just hurt everyone that's ever hurt you?

You shouldn't believe something just because some random person says its true but William Craig is a very well known author and debater in Christian apologetics so if you have ever seen a religious debate before, I'm sure you have heard of him. Also his statements in combination with the evidence I have already given is enough information to neccesitate the conclusion the resurrection did not occur. Your only argument against the resurrection is that you don't want to believe my evidence and someone that has a doctorate degree on the subject.

"You said that Jesus has all the power but he choose not to use them. how are you so sure about it"
-I'm sure about it because that is what he gospels say and I have already proved them to be reliable.

No I do not think it is in the nature of every being to want to save themselves. How would you explain martyrs and suicide bombers. Also if you read the bible you would see we would not expect Jesus to save himself.

I only talked about suffering because you brought it up last round...

Therefore my claims are that the gospels are reliable, Jesus claimed to be God, and was resurrected (which normal people don't do) therefore it is more probable that Jesus was God than He was not. So far you have not been able to refute any of my arguments. Thanks for the debate
xxx200

Con

turning the other chick means allowing the aggressor to do more harm. i do not think, any sane person would do that. i am a sane person.so gospels are impractical. and what about loving your enemy ? have you ever done that?

it is true that william kraig is a great scholer but it is also true that he is a devout christian. he loves christianity. therefore chances are that his views may be biased and partial. partial views will not lead us to the truth.therefore i dismiss the testimony of william craig. there was no resurrection.

source:http://www.reasonablefaith.org...

when gospels are impractical, all its stories may be impractical. we cannot rely on them. jesus has no power to save himself.

suicide bombers and jesus are not the same thing because suicide bombers want to kill people and in the process they are ready to get killed. but jesus has no such intentions.

therefore, jesus was a ordinary man with no supernatural power. so he was not god.

Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by iamnotwhoiam 4 years ago
iamnotwhoiam
Arguments that M,M,L & J are authors of Gospels far from conclusive.

A bishop in the 2nd century confirming authorship is about as meaningless as you could get.

One "argument" that Jesus was buried in a tomb is that there are no other accounts to say he was not!

All Pro's argumentation ignores the fact that mythology is rife throughout history. People make stories up. Groups of people. People fabricate legends based on hearsay and the barest of facts. THIS is not in doubt.

On the slenderest of evidence, Pro concludes that Jesus was God.

Unfortunately, where Con did not waffle he rambled incoherently.

No-one gets anything for reliable sources.
Posted by stubsmagee 5 years ago
stubsmagee
@Patzer24 It is a good possibility. I had someone else request to debate me on this subject and I am currently doing that. It is a very good debate, I invite you to check it out. I am doing that and in school. I do not feel I can do 2 debates and school at the same time. Once I get done with that debate I will certainly talk to you about setting up a debate. Thanks and Have a good day man!
Posted by Patzer24 5 years ago
Patzer24
Pro, can you challenge me to this debate?
Posted by phantom 5 years ago
phantom
Like my previous comment said I misread the resolution.
Posted by stubsmagee 5 years ago
stubsmagee
So do you wanna debate?
Posted by phantom 5 years ago
phantom
nvm actually. I thought i said something else.
Posted by phantom 5 years ago
phantom
I'm tempted to play devils advocate just because of the fact that I always see debates I want to do but I agree with the instigator! :/
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by BennyW 4 years ago
BennyW
stubsmageexxx200Tied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Con seemed confused about what he was debating, had bad grammar and could't form any good arguments.
Vote Placed by iamnotwhoiam 4 years ago
iamnotwhoiam
stubsmageexxx200Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: See Comments
Vote Placed by ReformedArsenal 5 years ago
ReformedArsenal
stubsmageexxx200Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con's arguments were faulty. Assuming that practicality = true... not a good move unless you can prove it. Also, the formatting is awful and the grammar and spelling is bad.
Vote Placed by randolph7 5 years ago
randolph7
stubsmageexxx200Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con assumes that God needs to be practical and that the gospels need to be so as well but shows no reason for this to be the case. Wish sources were available online but pro's were slightly more believable. Also Pro's argumentation was better while con seemed confused at times.