Is it an evangelical American Jesus cult thing, to claim that there is absolute, compelling and empirical evidence for the existence of Jesus? Americans have a mania for facts and statistics, just listen to their sport commentaries, which, I suppose, explains their desperate need to provide some “facts”, any “facts”, to prove that Jesus existed.
Because the facts are not on their side, they have no choice but to make appeals to authority, emotion, and special pleading when presenting their case and the encyclopaedia of logical fallacies suddenly becomes their best friend and play-book. They will run through every last fallacy just to avoid offering anything tangible. And if that is still not convincing they will simply resort to dishonesty and deceit.
Is there a possibility that a man named Jesus really did live in that part of the world at that time. Well if he did then he was a political radical, a religious wannabe like David Koresh, a self-proclaimed messiah, or a Ghandi like leader and that would certainly not attest to his divinity. Either he, or his followers, built up a religion around him, turning him into a god, or the greater possibility is that he never lived at all, and was a construction of those who would create a new religion.
There is no contemporary evidence for a 1st century Jewish preacher called Jesus. There is no evidence that any of the claims contained in the contradictory gospels, compiled decades after the events they claim to describe, and indeed, after the Christian tradition had already been established by the likes of Paul of Tarsus, are even remotely true.
In the mind of the religious believer this, of course, does not matter. After all faith is belief without and often in spite of the evidence. They have this desperate need to believe it to be true so exposing the entire tale is a myth does not matter because they don't sincerely care about matters of evidence and reason. The only conclusion that can therefore be reasonably drawn is that the entire tale was a fabrication at the end of the 1st century to promote a religious tradition which was already in existence and to add divine merit to what was the concocted cult of a few clever patriarchs.
Apart from the lack of contemporary accounts there is also not a single piece of physical evidence that a biblical Jesus ever existed. There are no artefacts, works of carpentry or any works allegedly written by the messiah himself. All that the religious tradition has to justify its claims is the very same religious tradition. It is no different to claiming the tale of Alice in Wonderland is true because the tale of Alice in Wonderland says so.
We now know that the claims about the town of Nazareth are false, that the miracle birth and childhood of the Jesus figure was a later addition to the gospels and does not appear in the oldest Gospel of Mark. We also know that all the tales were written by unknown non-contemporary authors who lived decades after the alleged events they were describing. There is no historical record to justify the miraculous events of guiding stars, ripping curtains, darkened earth of the resurrection of Saints in the streets of Jerusalem, the alleged census or any other of the concrete claims made in the Gospels which can be tested. Is it not strange that there is not a single mention of Jesus by the Romans or by Jews, not by believers or by unbelievers, not during his entire lifetime? This does not disprove his existence, but it certainly casts great doubt on the historicity of a man who was supposedly widely known to have made a great impact on the world. Someone should have noticed yet none did.
So every single claim made about Jesus, whether in the bible or in the non-contemporary accounts in the decades and centuries that followed, are hearsay accounts, compiled by people with an agenda after the alleged presence on earth of this god in human form and without any source of objective authority or reference. Every single letter in every single book of the new testament was compiled over thousands of different manuscripts and books (many of which were not even included in current Bibles) centuries later and therefore do not constitute a reliable source of information on which the existence of a historical let alone a biblical Jesus can be alleged. Clearly this evidence would not survive inquiry in a court of law.
There are a number of historical writers and figures whom Christians like to trot out as evidence of the existence of Jesus. Not one (repeat not one) of them is a historical contemporary, some of them are just downright dubious (frauds) and none attest to his divinity. They are usually:
Pliny the Younger
To be blunt. Claims that there is historical evidence for the existence of Jesus are false. There are no verifiable or trustworthy contemporary accounts of the person known as Jesus of Nazareth. The Gospels are not accurate, are internally inconsistent, and of unknown authorship. They do not qualify for being historical or evidential sources any more than Alice in Wonderland qualifies as evidence of talking animals. One can but be bemused by the fact that these myths continue to convince millions of fervent believers. It is no different to belief in Zeus, Odin, Xenu, fairies or Unicorns yet continues to command the ear of countless grown up humans who insist that not only is it true, but that it is divinely true by the power of its own authority.
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