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52 A.D., Thalius, 56-120 A.D. Tacotus next
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1/19/2015 5:30:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Did Jesus truly live, minister, died and rise from the grave as the Gospels record or was it an elaborate conspiracy? One thing we know about the Kennedy assassination and the World Trade Center attack: regardless of interpretation, and conspiracy theories, there were eyewitnesses to the events, and the events did truly occur. In a similar manner, the ancient evidence related to Jesus reveals there were eyewitnesses and e did He did exist in history. Is there any evidence for Jesus outside the Bible? Yes, and the ancient non-Christian interpretations (and critical commentaries) of the Gospel accounts serve to strengthen the core claims of the New Testament.
Hostile Non-Biblical Pagan Accounts
There are a number of ancient classical accounts of Jesus from pagan, non-Christian sources. These accounts are generally hostile to Christianity; some ancient authors denied the miraculous nature of Jesus and the events surrounding His life:
Thallus is perhaps the earliest secular writer to mention Jesus and he is so ancient his writings don"t even exist anymore. But Julius Africanus, writing around 221AD does quote Thallus who previously tried to explain away the darkness occurring at Jesus" crucifixion:
"On the whole world there pressed a most fearful darkness; and the rocks were rent by an earthquake, and many places in Judea and other districts were thrown down. This darkness Thallus, in the third book of his History, calls, as appears to me without reason, an eclipse of the sun." (Julius Africanus, Chronography, 18:1)
If only more of Thallus" record could be found, we might find more confirmation of Jesus" crucifixion. But there are some things we can conclude from this account: Jesus lived, He was crucified, and there was an earthquake and darkness at the point of His crucifixion.