The First easter

Discuss either theological doctrines, ideas about God, or Biblical criticism. I don't want any debates about creation vs evolution.

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The First easter

Postby The Pixie on Sat Apr 30, 2016 1:32 pm

Quick introduction: I am an atheist guy, living in the UK. I have debated Metacrock at length on CARM, and more recently on TheologyWeb, after which Metacrock invited me here.

As an opening thread, I would like to offer a scenario of the circumstances around the first Easter. I think it fits the evidence (which is not the same as fitting the Biblical texts, but rather explains why they say what they say). It does allow that the resurrection did happen, so is not exactly my position. I think this better fits the evidence than the usual Christian story. I invite you lot to shoot it down...

When Jesus was arrested, the disciples fled Jerusalem for fear of being arrested themselves (Mark 14:27). Jesus was tried for sedition - claiming to be the Messiah, the king of the Jews, was evidence enough for the Romans, and crucified. He was buried with the other criminals (Acts 13:29 indicates the enemies of Jesus buried him), his body forgotten about. Peter and others resumed their careers as fishermen in Galilee (John 21:3). Some days or weeks later, the disciples saw the resurrected Jesus in Galilee (Mark 14:28, Mark 16:7). They saw a bright light (Acts 9:3), all that could be seen of his new, heavenly body (1 Cor 15:42-49).

The very early church did not care about the old body; Jesus had cast it off, and appeared in his new heavenly body. They looked at scripture to guide them, and determined that Jesus must have been resurrected on the third day from Hosea 6:2.

While they may have expected a bodily resurrection, what they saw convinced them otherwise. Remember how dramatic Paul's conversion was; if the disciples saw something similar, I think it reasonable to suppose they would modify their beliefs. Also bear in mind that they were not expecting the messiah to be God incarnate, but somehow (and at some later point) they became convinced of that. People's theologies do change!

So these were the events the started a new religion. This fits what Paul states in 1 Cor 15:
1 Cor 15:3 For I delivered to you [b]as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; 7 then He appeared to [c]James, then to all the apostles; 8 and last of all, as [d]to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.

Over time, people started to fill in the gaps. No one knew what had happened at the trial or crucifixion, but they knew about the Roman's procedures, so they could have a good guess. The Romans were known to allow the dead to be removed according to Jewish law, so it was reasonable to suppose that happened to Jesus, and sounded better than saying he weas left up there for the crows. After a few decades, the story got more developed, with Jesus put in a special tomb, and later still the story that the tomb was found empty was added.

This then was the PMPN that Mark based his gospel account on.

The guards on the tomb were a later addition to counter claims the body had been stolen. Jesus eating fish were a later addition to counter claims Jesus was merely a ghost, as was Thomas inspecting the crucifixion imprints. Other later additions include all the post-resurreection sights in and around Jerusalem, Joseph of Arimathea being a Christian and the dead saints walking around Jerusalem.

I can envisage a cry of "cherry picking" regarding the verses I cite. However I suggest that these verses are harking back to the original story. For example, Jesus predicted the disciples would scatter; that was in the original text, and was left in even after the narrative changed to say that the disciples remained in Jerusalem. Another example is the final chapter of John stating the disciples became fisherman again. Why would they do that if they had been told by the resurrected Christ to spread the gospel? They would not. The account comes from a much earlier tradition in which the disciples resumed their old lives before seeing Jesus resurrected.

I do not think we can know what actually happened. All I claim is that this fits the evidence better than the usual Christian scenario.
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:08 pm

Hey man great to see you here.

sorry I did not get around to putting up the PMPN stuff if you want to do more of that here, I will if you want me to. or we could just incorporate it into this.
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:15 pm

The Pixie wrote:When Jesus was arrested, the disciples fled Jerusalem for fear of being arrested themselves (Mark 14:27). Jesus was tried for sedition - claiming to be the Messiah, the king of the Jews, was evidence enough for the Romans, and crucified. He was buried with the other criminals (Acts 13:29 indicates the enemies of Jesus buried him), his body forgotten about. Peter and others resumed their careers as fishermen in Galilee (John 21:3). Some days or weeks later, the disciples saw the resurrected Jesus in Galilee (Mark 14:28, Mark 16:7). They saw a bright light (Acts 9:3), all that could be seen of his new, heavenly body (1 Cor 15:42-49).


I suppose if I thought I could find arguments to disprove that but for now I'll just say I see no reason to doubt the narrative. We have reasons to believe that the narrative of the emptily tomb was very early it has attestation of people who knew the eye witnesses.
The very early church did not care about the old body; Jesus had cast it off, and appeared in his new heavenly body. They looked at scripture to guide them, and determined that Jesus must have been resurrected on the third day from Hosea 6:2.

While they may have expected a bodily resurrection, what they saw convinced them otherwise. Remember how dramatic Paul's conversion was; if the disciples saw something similar, I think it reasonable to suppose they would modify their beliefs. Also bear in mind that they were not expecting the messiah to be God incarnate, but somehow (and at some later point) they became convinced of that. People's theologies do change!


that doesn't really make seems. It is not clear that they understood his allusion to resurrection or that they pieces it together latter. if they expected res and it was contradicted they probably would never have had Christianity

So these were the events the started a new religion. This fits what Paul states in 1 Cor 15:
1 Cor 15:3 For I delivered to you [b]as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; 7 then He appeared to [c]James, then to all the apostles; 8 and last of all, as [d]to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.


do you have an actual reason for doubting that it was resurrection I mean other than not believing it?
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:34 pm

This then was the PMPN that Mark based his gospel account on.

The guards on the tomb were a later addition to counter claims the body had been stolen. Jesus eating fish were a later addition to counter claims Jesus was merely a ghost, as was Thomas inspecting the crucifixion imprints. Other later additions include all the post-resurreection sights in and around Jerusalem, Joseph of Arimathea being a Christian and the dead saints walking around Jerusalem.


we have two independent traditions. GPete shows that the tradition was as early as the PMPN so there's n reason reason to assume this.



I can envisage a cry of "cherry picking" regarding the verses I cite. However I suggest that these verses are harking back to the original story. For example, Jesus predicted the disciples would scatter; that was in the original text, and was left in even after the narrative changed to say that the disciples remained in Jerusalem.


Koester's idea of independent sources answer's that. they didn't remain because they went out and fished.


Another example is the final chapter of John stating the disciples became fisherman again. Why would they do that if they had been told by the resurrected Christ to spread the gospel? They would not. The account comes from a much earlier tradition in which the disciples resumed their old lives before seeing Jesus resurrected.


The fishing stuck on there at the end it has obvious metaphorical overtones (fishers of men) so it could be an embellishment,
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Re: The First easter

Postby sgttomas on Mon May 02, 2016 1:01 pm

The Pixie wrote:Quick introduction: I am an atheist guy, living in the UK. I have debated Metacrock at length on CARM, and more recently on TheologyWeb, after which Metacrock invited me here.


Hi there! I'm a Muslim guy living in Canada. I'm an ancient cast-off from CARM. Nice to see you here :)

Sorry, I don't really have much to comment on regarding your post here.

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Re: The First easter

Postby The Pixie on Tue May 03, 2016 5:17 am

Metacrock wrote:
The Pixie wrote:When Jesus was arrested, the disciples fled Jerusalem for fear of being arrested themselves (Mark 14:27). Jesus was tried for sedition - claiming to be the Messiah, the king of the Jews, was evidence enough for the Romans, and crucified. He was buried with the other criminals (Acts 13:29 indicates the enemies of Jesus buried him), his body forgotten about. Peter and others resumed their careers as fishermen in Galilee (John 21:3). Some days or weeks later, the disciples saw the resurrected Jesus in Galilee (Mark 14:28, Mark 16:7). They saw a bright light (Acts 9:3), all that could be seen of his new, heavenly body (1 Cor 15:42-49).

I suppose if I thought I could find arguments to disprove that but for now I'll just say I see no reason to doubt the narrative. We have reasons to believe that the narrative of the emptily tomb was very early it has attestation of people who knew the eye witnesses.

The narrative says the disciples scattered like sheep and also that they hung around in Jerusalem. Which do we pick? I think the former is the original story, the latter the embellishment. The narrative says the disciple resumed their careers as fishermen and also that they were commissioned by Jesus to spread the word. Which do we pick? I think the former is the original story, the latter the embellishment.

Yes, there is some support for the empty tomb in the PMPN, but that is not accepted by all scholars (see here). Further, we do not know at what point it was injected into the PMPN.
that doesn't really make seems. It is not clear that they understood his allusion to resurrection or that they pieces it together latter. if they expected res and it was contradicted they probably would never have had Christianity

But the conversion of Paul shows that it could happen. Paul was anti-Christian, and was certainly not expecting Jesus to be resurrected, but seeing a heavenly body was enough to convince him. The disciples were starting much further into the religion; they already believed Jesus. Why are you so sure they would not also be convinced when seeing Jesus is a heavenly body?
do you have an actual reason for doubting that it was resurrection I mean other than not believing it?

What I am describing here is perfectly consistent with the resurrection. What I am saying is the early church, pre-Mark, believed the resurrection was not bodily, that the empty tomb was therefore irrelevant, and all the accounts of Jesus in Jerusalem after the crucifixion were later embellishments.

I do doubt the resurrection, but that moght be a poic for another thread.
Metacrock wrote:we have two independent traditions. GPete shows that the tradition was as early as the PMPN so there's n reason reason to assume this.

No, Peter does not show that. Peter got revised at some point, and we have no way of knowing what was in the original. It might have had the guards, but it might not.
I can envisage a cry of "cherry picking" regarding the verses I cite. However I suggest that these verses are harking back to the original story. For example, Jesus predicted the disciples would scatter; that was in the original text, and was left in even after the narrative changed to say that the disciples remained in Jerusalem.

Koester's idea of independent sources answer's that. they didn't remain because they went out and fished.

What do you mean? They had a relaxing afternoon fishing somewhere near Jerusalem, or they resumed their careers as fishermen on the Sea of Galilee, or what?
The fishing stuck on there at the end it has obvious metaphorical overtones (fishers of men) so it could be an embellishment,

Could be. But it may well have been inspired by the original sightings of Jesus, which were in Galilee, after the disciples had scatter from Jerusalem, and resumed their careers as fishermen.
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Tue May 03, 2016 9:05 am

The Pixie wrote:When Jesus was arrested, the disciples fled Jerusalem for fear of being arrested themselves (Mark 14:27). Jesus was tried for sedition - claiming to be the Messiah, the king of the Jews, was evidence enough for the Romans, and crucified. He was buried with the other criminals (Acts 13:29 indicates the enemies of Jesus buried him), his body forgotten about. Peter and others resumed their careers as fishermen in Galilee (John 21:3). Some days or weeks later, the disciples saw the resurrected Jesus in Galilee (Mark 14:28, Mark 16:7). They saw a bright light (Acts 9:3), all that could be seen of his new, heavenly body (1 Cor 15:42-49).


that is speculation. the tomb was offered by someone not his follower doesn't mean he was an enemy. the idea of being forgotten is not based on anything in evidence.


meta I suppose if I thought I could find arguments to disprove that but for now I'll just say I see no reason to doubt the narrative. We have reasons to believe that the narrative of the emptily tomb was very early it has attestation of people who knew the eye witnesses.


The narrative says the disciples scattered like sheep and also that they hung around in Jerusalem. Which do we pick? I think the former is the original story, the latter the embellishment. The narrative says the disciple resumed their careers as fishermen and also that they were


My theory is that such differences in narrative are accounted for by different witnesses being in different communities. one witness saw some of the core go away while another saw the core members around him stay so they produce two deterrent stories. That dove tails withy Koester's i9dea that the post res sightings are from different sources.

Yes, there is some support for the empty tomb in the PMPN, but that is not accepted by all scholars (see here). Further, we do not know at what point it was injected into the PMPN.


so what? Q is not accepted by all scholars

[b]meta before[/b]: that doesn't really make seems. It is not clear that they understood his allusion to resurrection or that they pieces it together latter. if they expected res and it was contradicted they probably would never have had Christianity



But the conversion of Paul shows that it could happen. Paul was anti-Christian, and was certainly not expecting Jesus to be resurrected, but seeing a heavenly body was enough to convince him. The disciples were starting much further into the religion; they already believed Jesus. Why are you so sure they would not also be convinced when seeing Jesus is a heavenly body?


still speculative


Meta do you have an actual reason for doubting that it was resurrection I mean other than not believing it?



What I am describing here is perfectly consistent with the resurrection. What I am saying is the early church, pre-Mark, believed the resurrection was not bodily, that the empty tomb was therefore irrelevant, and all the accounts of Jesus in Jerusalem after the crucifixion were later embellishments.



again we know they did believe it was bodily. that's what Jews believed. they were Jews no reason to think they did not believe it. the whole point of linking resurrection with messiah was for the resurrection of bodies. the whole point of the guys coming out of tombs, the graves blowing open and they came out even if it's must an embellishment it proves that's they believed.

I do doubt the resurrection, but that moght be a poic for another thread.


right

Metacrock wrote:we have two independent traditions. GPete shows that the tradition was as early as the PMPN so there's n reason reason to assume this.


No, Peter does not show that. Peter got revised at some point, and we have no way of knowing what was in the original. It might have had the guards, but it might not


NO! that is emphatically BS. Ray Brown made his Reputation by proving the independent and early nature of the reading. I know that for fact I've read in a couple of sources and he also goes into it in Death of the messiah,.

I love colored fonts



I can envisage a cry of "cherry picking" regarding the verses I cite. However I suggest that these verses are harking back to the original story. For example, Jesus predicted the disciples would scatter; that was in the original text, and was left in even after the narrative changed to say that the disciples remained in Jerusalem.

Koester's idea of independent sources answer's that. they didn't remain because they went out and fished.

What do you mean? They had a relaxing afternoon fishing somewhere near Jerusalem, or they resumed their careers as fishermen on the Sea of Galilee, or what?
The fishing stuck on there at the end it has obvious metaphorical overtones (fishers of men) so it could be an embellishment,

Could be. But it may well have been inspired by the original sightings of Jesus, which were in Galilee, after the disciples had scatter from Jerusalem, and resumed their careers as fishermen.[/quote]

interesting
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Re: The First easter

Postby The Pixie on Tue May 03, 2016 3:30 pm

Metacrock wrote:that is speculation. the tomb was offered by someone not his follower doesn't mean he was an enemy.

It says in Acts he was buried by his enemies:

Acts 13:28 And though they found no ground for putting Him to death, they asked Pilate that He be [f]executed. 29 When they had carried out all that was written concerning Him, they took Him down from the [g]cross and laid Him in a tomb.

I think it more likely that this was the original story, and the burial by Joseph was the later embellishment, added to save Jesus from a dishonorable burial.
Metacrock wrote:the idea of being forgotten is not based on anything in evidence.

It is based on Mark indicating the disciples scattered, heading back to Galilee, after the arrest, and also on Roman practice of the day. It is also significant that in Acts the apostles never cite the tomb and there is no evidence the tomb was revered at that time (and tomb veneration was big at that time).

This is an opinion I share with Dominic Crossan, a scholar you frequently cite.
My theory is that such differences in narrative are accounted for by different witnesses being in different communities. one witness saw some of the core go away while another saw the core members around him stay so they produce two deterrent stories. That dove tails withy Koester's i9dea that the post res sightings are from different sources.

I find that unlikely because of the way the narrative is so similar up to the empty tomb, and then splits wildly. A more likely explananation is there was one original account, and they later got embellished in different directions. The fact that early manuscripts of Mark miss the last few verses is very strong evidence that this acceptable practice; we can be pretty sure someone thought it reasonable to add to Mark. In effect, that is what the authurs of Luke and Matthew did too.
Yes, there is some support for the empty tomb in the PMPN, but that is not accepted by all scholars (see here). Further, we do not know at what point it was injected into the PMPN.

so what? Q is not accepted by all scholars

So it would be wrong to say Q was established as fact. How many scholars think the empty tomb was in the PMPN? How many think not? If it is only a small fraction who say the PMPN included the empty tomb, your evidence is weakened.
But the conversion of Paul shows that it could happen. Paul was anti-Christian, and was certainly not expecting Jesus to be resurrected, but seeing a heavenly body was enough to convince him. The disciples were starting much further into the religion; they already believed Jesus. Why are you so sure they would not also be convinced when seeing Jesus is a heavenly body?

still speculative

Unfortunately Mark chose not to document what was seen in Galilee, and so we can only speculate from the few hints we have.

Was Paul so out of sync with the Jewish Christians that he was preaching a resurrection in a new heavenly body whilst they preached a bodily resurrection? We see no evidence of that, and yet we do know they had other big disagreements.

I would not say the disciples saw the same thing Paul did necessarily, but I think it must have been close enough that they could recognise each others experiences as being the same thing.
What I am describing here is perfectly consistent with the resurrection. What I am saying is the early church, pre-Mark, believed the resurrection was not bodily, that the empty tomb was therefore irrelevant, and all the accounts of Jesus in Jerusalem after the crucifixion were later embellishments.

again we know they did believe it was bodily. that's what Jews believed. they were Jews no reason to think they did not believe it. the whole point of linking resurrection with messiah was for the resurrection of bodies. the whole point of the guys coming out of tombs, the graves blowing open and they came out even if it's must an embellishment it proves that's they believed.

Again, if what they saw was a resurrection in a new body, I think they would believe in resurrection in a new body.

In effect what you are saying is that these people are unreliable witnesses because they would twist whatever they saw into their preconceived ideas. If aliens had come down in a flying saucer, they would understand that to be Jesus resurrected in bodily form, because they were so conditioned to expect that.

If you want to go down that road I can dismiss their accounts entirely - they just saw what they told they should see, regardless of what was actually there.
NO! that is emphatically BS. Ray Brown made his Reputation by proving the independent and early nature of the reading. I know that for fact I've read in a couple of sources and he also goes into it in Death of the messiah,.

Then you need to present the evidence that the guards, for instance, were in that original version. I am not disputing an early date for Peter, I am questioning what was in that original version. As far as I know, that is unknown.
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Tue May 03, 2016 11:59 pm

the evidence is that they are in peter and theory not coped because Peter did not copy Matthew,




I. Guards on the Tomb corroborated by a second source.

A. Skeptic's Argument that Only Matthew Mentions Guards.

The assumption is that since Mark was written first and it does not mention the guards, than Matthew added the point about the guards for apologetical purses, to answer the argument of the Jews that the disciples stole the body.

B. Matt is only Canonical Gospel to mention Guards, but Gospel of Peter also mentions them.

The Gospel of Peter was discovered in Egypt at Oxryranchus in the 19th century. It was probably written around 200 AD and contains some Gnostic elements, but is basically Orthodox. There are certain basic differences between Gospel of Peter (GPet) and the canonically, but mainly the two are in agreement.

C. GPet follows OT for Passion Narrative and Res.

1) Use of OT passages for Passion narrative.

Gospel of Peter (GPet) follows the OT as a means of describing the passion narrative, rather following Matthew. Jurgden Denker uses this observation to argue that GPet is independent is based upon an independent source. In addition to Denker, Koester, Borwn, and the very popular Charles Dominik Corssan also agree (Koster, 218).

It is upon this basis that Crossan constructs his "cross Gospel" which he dates in the middle of the first century, meaning, an independent source upon which all the canonical and GPet draw. But the independence of GPet from all of these sources is also guaranteed by it's failure to follow any one of them.

2) GPet does not follow any of the canonical, but is in general agreement with them.

Brown, who built his early reputation on study of GPet, follows the sequence of narrative in GPet and compares it in very close reading with that of the canonical Gospels. He finds that GPet is not dependent upon the canonical, although it is closer in the order of events to Matt/Mark rather than to Luke and John.


GPet follow the classical flow from trail through crucifixion to burial to tomb presumably with post resurrectional appearances to follow. The GPet sequence of individual episodes, however, is not the same as that of any can canonical Gospel...When one looks at the overall sequence in the 23 items I listed in table 10, it would take very great imagination to picture the author of GPet studying Matthew carefully, deliberately shifting episodes around and copying in episodes form Luke and John to produce the present sequence. [Brown, Death of the Messiah, 1322]



As documented on the Jesus Puzzle II page, and on Res part I. GPet is neither a copy of the canonical, nor are they a copy of GPet, but both use a common source in the Passion narrative which dates to AD 50 according to Crosson and Koester. Brown follows the flow of the narrative closely and presents a 23 point list in a huge table wich illustrates the point just made above. I cannot reproduce the enire table, but just to give a few examples:


"IN the Canonical Gospel's Passion Narrative we have an example of Matt. working conservatively and Luke working more freely with the Marcan outline and of each adding material: but neither produced an end product so radically diverse from Mark as GPet is from Matt." [Brown, 1325]


D. Why would the other Gospels omitt the Guards?

The question then arises, why did Mark, Luke and John no mention the guards? First, the assumption that because Mark was written first his information is older than Matthew's information, or is the same as Matt's is a false assumption. Matt. uses another source in creation small sayings that is neither form Mark nor used by Luke. This source is called M. So M could be older material than that found in Mark, so just because Matthew was written latter than Mark, it does not necessarily follow that his information is not older. M could contain a different tradition which Mark and Luke and John just chose not to use.

So why would they not mention the guards? Probably because the Jews had stopped making the argument because it didn't fly; the movement had grown and survived anyway. But the Matthew community, or Matthew School as some scholars have it, may have been confronted with a resurgence of that Jewish argument, or it may just be as simple as wanting to include all of the facts.
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Re: The First easter

Postby Metacrock on Wed May 04, 2016 12:01 am

btw I hope you will stay in the discussion on the adventure board. It's really good to have new voices in it.

do you remember fleetmouse from carm?> he;s herfe too but hasn't been around in a while.,
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