The Instigator
Cholley71
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
tschuk
Pro (for)
Winning
12 Points

Richard Carrier: Did Jesus Even Exist?

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Post Voting Period
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after 3 votes the winner is...
tschuk
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/8/2015 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 664 times Debate No: 74991
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (3)

 

Cholley71

Con

Richard Carrier: Did Jesus Even Exist?
Richard Carrier is an atheist activist, author, public speaker, and blogger. He has a doctorate in ancient history from Columbia University where his thesis was on the history of science in ancient antiquity. He is a leading proponent of the Christ myth theory.

https://www.youtube.com...
tschuk

Pro

I accept.

Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
Cholley71

Con

Cholley71 forfeited this round.
tschuk

Pro

I would also like to remind you that Carrier is an ignorant man. He is so militant that he disbelieved Antony Flew had become a Deist, despite Flew coming out and saying that the book he co-wrote was entirely reflective of his ideas.

The Christ Myth Theory is laughable, there are plenty of Atheists, Jews, Christians, etc that all have come to the conclusion that Jesus was a Historical Figure. The reason why the theory isn't given much sway anymore is because of how disproven it's become. The idea that Jesus was created based off of earlier pagan myths is laughable. I will now list various characters from mythologies that Atheists like Carrier have claimed were the basis for the Christ Myth.

First up is Horus:

The Christ Myth Theory claims these following things about Horus.
He was born on December 25 of a virgin: Isis Mary
" A star in the East proclaimed his arrival
" Three kings came to adore the newborn "savior"
" He became a child prodigy teacher at age 12
" At age 30 he was "baptized" and began a "ministry"
" Horus had twelve "disciples"
" Horus was betrayed
" He was crucified
" He was buried for three days
" He was resurrected after three days

Let's debunk this, shall we?

Horus was born to Isis; there is no mention in history of her being called "Mary." Moreover, "Mary" is our Anglicized form of her real name, Miryam or Miriam. "Mary" was not even used in the original texts of Scripture.

" Isis was not a virgin; she was the widow of Osiris and conceived Horus with Osiris.
" Horus was born during month of Khoiak (Oct/Nov), not December 25. Further, there is no mention in the Bible as to Christ"s actual birth date.
" There is no record of three kings visiting Horus at his birth. The Bible never states the actual number of magi that came to see Christ.
" Horus is not a "savior" in any way; he did not die for anyone.
" There are no accounts of Horus being a teacher at the age of 12.
" Horus was not "baptized." The only account of Horus that involves water is one story where Horus is torn to pieces, with Isis requesting the crocodile god to fish him out of the water.
" Horus did not have a "ministry."
" Horus did not have 12 disciples. According to the Horus accounts, Horus had four demigods that followed him, and there are some indications of 16 human followers and an unknown number of blacksmiths that went into battle with him.
" There is no account of Horus being betrayed by a friend.
" Horus did not die by crucifixion. There are various accounts of Horus" death, but none of them involve crucifixion.
" There is no account of Horus being buried for three days.
" Horus was not resurrected. There is no account of Horus coming out of the grave with the body he went in with. Some accounts have Horus/Osiris being brought back to life by Isis and then becoming the lord of the underworld.

So, thats debunked. Lets continue.

Christ Myth Theorist's believe that Mithras shared the following attributes.

-Born of a Virgin, Crucified, Resurrected, etc. (Essentially all the same things said of Horus, however I need to shorten my argument)

What are the facts though?

" He was born out of a solid rock, not from any woman.
" He battled first with the sun and then with a primeval bull, thought to be the first act of creation. Mithras killed the bull, which then became the ground of life for the human race.
" Mithras"s birth was celebrated on December 25, along with winter solstice.
" There is no mention of his being a great teacher.
" There is no mention of Mithras having 12 disciples. The idea that Mithras had 12 disciples may have come from a mural in which Mithras is surrounded by the twelve signs of the zodiac.
" Mithras had no bodily resurrection. Rather, when Mithras completed his earthly mission, he was taken to paradise in a chariot, alive and well. The early Christian writer Tertullian did write about Mithraic cultists re-enacting resurrection scenes, but this occurred well after New Testament times, so if any copycatting was done, it was Mithraism copying Christianity.

More examples can be given of Krishna, Attis, Dionysus, and other mythological gods, but the result is the same. In the end, the historical Jesus portrayed in the Bible is unique. The alleged similarities of Jesus" story to pagan myths are greatly exaggerated. Further, while tales of Horus, Mithras, and others pre-date Christianity, there is very little historical record of the pre-Christian beliefs of those religions. The vast majority of the earliest writings of these religions date from the third and fourth centuries A.D. To assume that the pre-Christian beliefs of these religions (of which there is no record) were identical to their post-Christian beliefs is naive. It is more logical to attribute any similarities between these religions and Christianity to the religions" copying Christian teaching about Jesus.

This leads us to the next area to examine: the logical fallacies committed by those claiming that Christianity borrowed from pagan mystery religions. We"ll consider two fallacies in particular: the fallacy of the false cause and the terminological fallacy.

If one thing precedes another, some conclude that the first thing must have caused the second. This is the fallacy of the false cause. A rooster may crow before the sunrise every morning, but that does not mean the rooster causes the sun to rise. Even if pre-Christian accounts of mythological gods closely resembled Christ (and they do not), it does not mean they caused the Gospel writers to invent a false Jesus. Making such a claim is akin to saying the TV series Star Trek caused the NASA Space Shuttle program.

The terminological fallacy occurs when words are redefined to prove a point. For example, the Zeitgeist movie says that Horus "began his ministry," but the word ministry is being redefined. Horus had no actual "ministry""nothing like that of Christ"s ministry. Those claiming a link between Mithras and Jesus talk about the "baptism" that initiated prospects into the Mithras cult, but what was it actually? Mithraic priests would place initiates into a pit, suspend a bull over the pit, and slit the bull"s stomach, covering the initiates in blood and gore. Such a practice bears no resemblance whatsoever to Christian baptism"a person going under water (symbolizing the death of Christ) and then coming back out of the water (symbolizing Christ"s resurrection). But advocates of a mythological Jesus deceptively use the same term, "baptism," to describe both rites in hopes of linking the two.

This brings us to the subject of the truthfulness of the New Testament. No other work of antiquity has more evidence to its historical veracity than the New Testament. The New Testament has more writers (nine), better writers, and earlier writers than any other document from that era. Further, history testifies that these writers went to their deaths claiming that Jesus had risen from the dead. While some may die for a lie they think is true, no person dies for a lie he knows to be false. Think about it"if someone was about to crucify you upside down, as happened to the apostle Peter, and all you had to do to save your life was renounce a lie you had knowingly told, what would you do?

In addition, history has shown that it takes at least two generations to pass before myth can enter a historical account. That"s because, as long as there are eyewitnesses to an event, errors can be refuted and mythical embellishments can be exposed. All the Gospels of the New Testament were written during the lifetime of the eyewitnesses, with some of Paul"s Epistles being written as early as A.D. 50. Paul directly appeals to contemporary eyewitnesses to verify his testimony (1 Corinthians 15:6).

So here we have eyewitnesses, the historically reliable Acts of the Apostles (The only confirmed Historical Doc in the Bible, look it up.), etc. Christ existed. Whether he was the Messiah is another debate.
Debate Round No. 2
Cholley71

Con

Cholley71 forfeited this round.
tschuk

Pro

Well voters I would like to point out that my opponent didn't refute any of my points, He instead chose to forfeit each round.

Whether or not you agree with my points we should all agree that it was wrong of my fellow debater to put such an interesting debate up only to forfeit each round once he came up against someone who was far better equipped than he. I think I have accurately defeated the "Christ Myth Theory" and proven Carrier wrong.

Vote for me.
Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by CivilProtester 1 year ago
CivilProtester
SNP1 is wrong. Many New Testament Scholars are more skeptical than Classicists or historians of Ancient Rome. But even if there is a bias, that doesn't disqualify the expertise on Jesus' existence because they're the ones who know more about Jesus than anyone else.

And on top of that, virtually no scholar finds mythicsm credible. The only historians who do are Richard Carrier, Rob. Price, and Thomas Brodie.
Posted by tschuk 2 years ago
tschuk
I keep up to date with various breakthroughs in Biblical Literature, and I know that you're either lying or misguided with point (2.).
There are no serious scholars today that doubt Jesus's existence. There are Scholars who have every reason to prove Jesus isn't real (Like Bart Ehrman) who still realize that the evidence from both internal and external sources are too much in order to say that Jesus never existed.
You claim bias, yet I can reference plenty of Secular Historians who believe Jesus was a real person from 1st century Palestine, they may not believe He was Divine, but they do know He was a historical figure.

Also, does Crowd Psychology make Evolution false then? Does Crowd Psychology influence the majority of Scientist's opinion on the subject?

If you're going to be ignorant of Historical Facts then keep it to yourself.
Posted by SNP1 2 years ago
SNP1
1) Theology still plagues the study of history. Yes, a consensus can be a good thing,but on these types of topics there is a lot of bias. This can also lead to Crowd Psychology influencing people's position on the subject.

2) More scholars every year are feeling that there at least needs to be a discussion about the Jesus Myth (dome are even starting to doubt that there was a historical Jesus).
Posted by tschuk 2 years ago
tschuk
It's not a good debate frankly. The Christ Myth theory isn't accepted by pretty much every scholar, it's such a stupid idea that Christ was never a historical figure that the movement itself is largely ignored by pretty much everyone. However there is the occasional "new find" that the media reports. It's usually nothing new though.
I just accepted it because it's an easy debate.
Posted by SNP1 2 years ago
SNP1
Con, how is this a debate?

Also, while Carrier has some good points, there are things he fails at.
Posted by canis 2 years ago
canis
No he did not...
Posted by tschuk 2 years ago
tschuk
I would also like to ask of CON that he leaves Round 2 for opening statements and Round 3 for rebuttals.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by tejretics 2 years ago
tejretics
Cholley71tschukTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con was, unfortunately, unable to complete the debate as they forfeited the majority of the debate. This was a forfeiture of all the rounds except Round 1 itself, and such full forfeits are rarely acceptable conduct in any debate setting. Pro made the only arguments in the debate and they were left unrefuted because Con could not rebut them due to their forfeiture. Therefore, I give Pro arguments and conduct. It's unfortunate that Con forfeited. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 2 years ago
dsjpk5
Cholley71tschukTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Ff
Vote Placed by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
Cholley71tschukTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture