Authorship of the Gospels
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"Anonymous of not, the Gospels are a pile of shit. Why don't you try reading them sometime."
Oh you fecker, you just made me laugh out loud in work...
"Maybe doctors should throw away the Hippocratic Oath since it we have no idea who wrote it."
Why does the authorship affect the value of the oath? That's just an absurd comparison.
The fact the provenance of the gospels authorship is unknown means the claim they are contemporary or eyewitness accounts is worthless. Though this is not the sole reason to disbelieve the claims of course, as all the supernatural claims are unsupported by any evidence of any kind, and written after the fact..
Nothing in the value of Hippocratic oath requires that we be sure of its authorship, so it's a sully comparison. It's value is inherent in its ethical pronouncements, the supernatural theistic hokum has long since lost all meaning and is purely symbolic, like swearing an oath on the bible in court is about the laws of perjory, and which is as bindingto an atheist as a theist, and therefore has nothing to do with religion, as its entirely symbolic as far as the law is concerned. Unlike unevidenced claims for supernatural magic that defy known scientific and natural laws, allegedly purportrated by a deity no one can demonstrate a shred of objective evidence for, and whose existence therefore is no more compelling than any other fictional deity from the thousands humans have created.
JoC you can't start arguing that the gospels are eyewitness accounts by the authors, then when your claim is thoroughly refuted decide it doesn't matter anyway.
They are not eyewitness accounts, the names assigned were done so arbitrarily long after the fact, and chosen deliberately to give a false impression they were eye witness accounts. And we're are entitled to infer that this means there are no eyewitness accounts and that the early Christians cobbling the bible together long after the fact were dishonestly editing it to give a false impression.
The duplicity is a valid objection to the claims. As is the lack of eyewitness testimony, but it's not needed anyway. As you have no objective evidence for any of it.
"They are not eyewitness accounts, the names assigned were done so arbitrarily long after the fact, and chosen deliberately to give a false impression they were eye witness accounts."
The names were given arbitrarily? I mentioned this earlier with old man but if they simply arbitrarily gave names to the author of the gospels, why is it that they stopped with Hebrews. Hebrews remains anonymous to this day! I find it curious that the people/person who gave the names of the gospels, didn't bother with Hebrews. Here's another one, Mark and Luke are not eye witnesses even in church tradition. Church tradition says that Mark based his gospel on Peter's teachings while Luke had Paul. If they simply gave these names to people so that the early Christians would believe, it would make more sense that they would give them the names Peter and Paul.
The idea that Mark and Luke wrote gospels that the other Apostles couldn't is one of those embarrassing facts that would only be held on to by the church because it was true. If what you claim is true, then the church had no incentive to put Luke and Mark on their gospels and they had every incentive to put other names on their gospels.
Bart Ehrman - Who Wrote The Gospels?
"The names were given arbitrarily? I mentioned this earlier with old man but if they simply arbitrarily gave names to the author of the gospels, why is it that they stopped with Hebrews. "
There is no if, you keep presenting it as if it's open to question, but it isn't. Thus your alternative assumptions are superfluous.
"If what you claim is true, "
It's not my claim, it is a fact maintained by almost all biblical scholars. As you've been told they even print this fact inside the cover of all bibles. Denying it is asinine.
No, your example is extremely poor. To come close, run through the teacher and student thing, insist it must be orally transmitted, but then wait at least four generations, then ask that fourth generation to relate what they believe the message was.
The synods were a good example, but put on your thinking cap for this one. The people involved in those synods predetermined what the guidelines were, then either accepted, rejected, or revised what documents they had before including them in a bible.
No, Mark is not considered first because it is the "shortest" Fail. Do some research, proper research.
The evidence that both Luke and Matthew were copied from Mark is accepted by most scholars, a youtube video does not change that.
The early church 'fathers ' quoted were all writing in the 3rd century...how did they know who wrote what? Tertullian in particular was writing in defence of his religion and position, not from a standpoint of knowledge.
When we get to his spiel about "peter" where there is no evidence that this person (if he existed) was ever in Rome, or met with anyone is ridiculous. It is a fantasy repeating a tradition. Evidence is required for his assertions and suppositions.
I am not going to bother with the rest of his apologist claptrap...remember I told you how the study of history really works?
Here you are again: Apply it to this youtube video and try to switch on that critical thinking mode:
Depending on the degree of importance of knowing the truth of something we make sure we are being told the truth by checking such things as:
- who is telling us this?
- how do I know if I can trust them?
- can their claims be confirmed somehow?
- how do I know if this document is genuine?
He is, like many an apologist, mixing his wish that gospels were a record of events, with actual carefully selected snippets of history, then presenting them with a giant dose of pre-supposition. It is propaganda, not reasoning, and you, JoC are failing to turn on your critical thinking mode and pandering to your confirmation bias.
Real history from Real Scholars is out there, try a library.
Dr. Darrell Bock
Open your frigging bible to the first page with writing on it. The Bible itself tells you that the authors of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are anonymous. When you say they are not, you are disagreeing with the writers of your own book.
"Open your frigging bible to the first page with writing on it. The Bible itself tells you that the authors of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are anonymous."
You have to see the irony mind. Do you think JoC cares remotely about the truth though? His agenda is relentless, and he doesn't even see it, which would be the very definition of deluded.
I seriously doubt he will accept that YouTube clip as true, odd that, and Bart Ehrman is a well respected biblical scholar.
Sheldon: And yet we try.
It's a bit like a scratching post...... I'm simply sharpening my claws. LOL
Where is the proof that cheesus was an actual historic specific person? Where is the evidence of cheesuses divinity? Where is the evidence of the divinity of anything? Where is the evidence of supernatural anything at any time? Where is your reason?
"The four canonical gospels comprise of synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) plus John. None are eye-witness accounts of Jesus' life and they are all written in Greek, not in the native tongues of anyone who met and followed Jesus. Many of the stories in the Gospels are copied from Greek god-man legends, especially those of Dionysus and Osiris. Although we now know them by the names of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, they are all originally anonymous."
If that YouTube clip claims otherwise then it's duplicitous.
As I've said many times before, you couldn't produce an authentic original complete manuscript of the Gospels written in First Century Greek for all of the gold in the entire universe. That is because such a thing never existed. It is a lie, like the fake Shroud of Turin.
I agree, but let's not miss the point here. I don't care if you have a bible signed by Jesus and Mary, and each of the 12 apostles, this wouldn't validate the bible's superstitious hokum claims, anymore than a first edition of Harry Potter signed by J K Rowling validates fucking wizardry.
However the fact this nonsense was cobbled together centuries after the fact says it all.
Sometimes, delusions cannot be cured.
The author of the vid posted by the OP states "Why isn't there a gospel of, for example, Thomas?", implying that one doesn't exist. In fact, one does exist but the author doesn't mention this because, it just wouldn't support his argument. In fact, there are in excess of 30 gospels that weren't included in the babble. What else isn't the author of the vid telling us and, if he is wrong about such a basic fact as the gospel of thomas, what else is he wrong about. Further, are there things in the other 30 gospels which destroy the vid's author's arguments?
We also know that early chistard writings were copied and changed (parts added and other parts deleted) and translated and changed. Therefore, what the original gospels actually stated may not be as the creator of the vid stated.
My feeling is that the author of the vid has decided what he wants us to believe and is selecting and skewing our view of the evidence that he presents in order to get us to believe what he wants us to believe.
Before we consider who actually wrote the 4 canonical gospels, when and for what purpose, there are some more basic questions that need to be addressed first:
1. The Romans were incredibly anally-retentive and yet wrote nothing about jesus during his supposed lifetime even though he supposedly drew crowds of 5,000 to his sermons, walked on water, changed water into wine and cured all manner of medical conditions. The first time jesus is mentioned outside of any christard text is in the Antiquities of the Jews which was written by Josephus in 93/94 AD. Even then, Josephus doesn't quote his source. Even though the Josephus text is 20 volumes, jesus is only mentioned twice. In the first instance, even christard scholars are of the opinion that it is a 4th century forgery. Now why would 4th century christards want to forge an entry about jesus in a book, I wonder? In the second instance, it is not clear which jesus Josephus is referring to nor is it clear whether the passage is another forgery.
2. If jesus really could change water into wine, he would have, at the very least, been incarcerated and used to provide Rome with wine. No way would he have simply been left to freely roam around Galilee.
3. If jesus really could cure all manner of medical conditions, he would have, at the very least, been incarcerated at used to cure high-ranking Roman officials of their medical conditions. No way would he have simply been left to freely roam around Galilee.
Having seen the posted vid, please see this vid: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQmMFQzrEsc.
That's actually misrepresenting the point of the guy in the video. He doesn't say "Why isn't there a gospel of Thomas?" He's saying, if the names of the authors were made up, why didn't the early church attribute them to people like Thomas or Peter? Why did they choose Mark and Luke who people knew never met Jesus? The simplest explanation for this situation is that Mark and Luke were the actual authors.
"Why isn't there a gospel of Thomas?"
There is already a gospel of Thomas. It is the oldest gospel in existence and it did not make the official cannon because it has too many Gnostic elements in it.
There are over 70 Gospels that did not make the cut into the official cannon.
As I understand it, the Gospel of Thomas is very difficult to date. Some scholars place it at 30-60AD (which would make it a contemporary source) or as late as 250AD. Generally though, it's taken to be in the mid second century.
The Gospel of Thomas as discovered at Nag Hammadi is dated by many scholars to have originated in about 60 to 110 CE. This is by textual analysis. "Scholars generally fall into one of two main camps: an "early camp" favoring a date for the "core" of between the years 50 and 100, before or approximately contemporary with the composition of the canonical gospels and a "late camp" favoring a date in the 2nd century, after composition of the canonical gospels." Wiki. Citations on page.
Certainly the 2nd and 3rd centuries CE were a hotbed of various texts and where most of the fraudulent entries into Josephus, the synoptic gospels and so on were perpetrated.
I would be interested to see your list of 'most scholars'.
And as your second point, No, the simplest explanation is that the authors of the synoptics were anonymous, are unknown and that two of them were largely copied from Mark. You can see this yourself if you read say Matthew and Mark where Matthew corrects the errors of Jewish Lore and custom prevalent in Mark but copies almost word for word, 600 verses.... An Aramaic version of Matthew was in circulation until the 7th century. It did not include the virgin birth or a resurrection.
May I point out that Thomas is still on the Index of Banned books and anathema to your church? Probably because, as its provenance is the same if not better than the synoptic gospels it contains no reference to a 'magic jesus'. Like the Pauline 1st epistles (written approx the same time,) no miracles, no virgin birth, no resurrection.
Hopefully JoC you are beginning to see why my position is "not proven for a human jesus, but "improbable' for a magical jesus as described in the gospels.
(Edit for blockquote and last para)
When did I say "most scholars"?
I don't get why you're bringing up Thomas' gospel as it's authenticity or forgery has absolutely nothing to do with the authenticity or forgery of the the other four gospels. The OP and this thread simply aims to show that Mark wrote Mark, Matthew wrote Matthew, Luke wrote Luke and John wrote John. It doesn't matter who wrote Thomas in this thread.
What we have for the canonical gospels is wide and unanimous external attestation.
Papias from Hieropolis writing in 125 AD
Irenaeus of Lyons writing in 180 AD
Tertullian in Carthage writing in 200 AD
Clement of Alexandria writing in 180 AD
All agree on the authorship of the gospels. How could four prominent writers of the church agree when they were so far from each other. I could propose two explanations (simple ones):
1. They all had the correct authors of the gospels.
2. There was collusion of some sort.
The first explanation is the simplest in that since multiple sources over a long period of time over vast reaches of land agree on a certain fact, then it's quite safe to say this was the truth. Now take note, I'm in no way saying (in this thread) what the gospel writers wrote are all true. This thread only focuses on the idea that some people say the gospels were anonymous. If you check your wiki sources for list of anonymous books, you'll actually find that none of the canonical gospels are there and the gospel of Thomas appears on the list.
The second explanation is possible if you believe the early church somehow had the power to do this. But let's say they did, why on earth would they agree to assign an author to every single book of the Bible and leave one anonymous? Hebrews was somehow not part of this collusion and in fact appears in the link I provided. Thus, the collusion theory fails as it fails to explain why Hebrews wasn't simply given its own author while all four gospels were given authors.
If you have another explanation for this wide and unanimous attestation for the authorship of the gospels, I'd like to hear it.
And now your dishonesty is reaching new lows even for a theist apologist. I am sure a moderator can tell whether you changed your first line in your post....that I copied from your original and used in a blockquote. If you have stooped to that well.......If I am wrong then I apologise...lets see what the moderators say.
Look at the dates JOC...they agree with the authors because that is when the authorship was assigned. Also when many of the interpolations and forgeries were perpetrated. The Christian ball was rolling and all sorts of snake oil salesmen were on board by the mid 2nd and 3rd Century with the Pauline Church just attempting to consolidate its power.
The Bishop of Rome in 492 CE decalerd many books and texts anathema, among them all the gnostic gspels, the Ebionite, Marcionite, Syriac and other texts anathema. This list later evolved into the index where the Roman Church sought to suppress and destroy independent thought and scientific discovery.
All the gospels are anonymous. If you have contemporary proof of authorship please present it and claim your Nobel prize for history.
You have made several claims for authorship of the gospels and other books in the NT...now please prove the claim. Or at least provide more evidence than the wishful thinking you have provided so far.
There is no evidence for the claimed authorship of the gospels, Epistles, Peter, John etc. None. If you got it, not empty claims without foundation then present it. I will be first to congratulate you as you ascend the podium in Oslo.
Oh and do not lie about your posts contents that is frowned upon by the mods. At least use the (edit:???) to show when you have changed a post.
I haven't edited anything actually in the original post as long as I remember. If I did, I only added a line and only before any replies came in. I haven't lied. You simply like to think of me as a liar so you're most definitely imagining things. Thank you.
As to your claim that the early church fathers agree on the authorship because that's when they were assigned - I addressed this in another part of the thread which I called collusion, it does not explain one thing though. If the early church fathers somehow colluded to assign these names to the works, why not go all the way and assign an author to Hebrews? Why allow Hebrews to remain anonymous (to this day!) if they simply wanted the works to have credible authors? The collusion theory simply does not make sense!
So if it's not collusion, I contend that the other simple explanation for this is that the authors of the gospels are the ones whose names appear on them today. I think only collusion and this explanation are able to explain why there is universal agreement among the early church fathers at least to the authorship of the gospels.
You mention the other gospels that were later rejected by the church. We can tackle that some other time. For this thread, let's focus on the authorship of the four that appear in the NT today.
Nag Hammadi Library
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JoC: Not disputing your facts, Yes, It is difficult to date. Simply asserting Thomas was an option at the time of the creation of the Bible.
I've got it a bit earlier, "Thomas was definitely before that time probably sometime around A.D. 140 to 180." As you said, some are pushing for even earlier dates, I think largely due to the simplicity of it's structure. I have also seen it listed as contemporary 30 to 60 (If that could be prove it would be the only piece of contemporary writing.) Anyway, research continues.
Now when was the cannon created? 5th Century? Certainly the Gospel of Thomas was one of the omitted Gospels.
"Q. How many gospels were "excluded" from the Bibles as we know them today? And why?"
"A. First of all, we don’t know how many gospels were excluded, because we don’t know how many gospels once circulated. Maybe hundreds! If you look at the table of contents of Wilhelm Schneemelcher’s New Testament Apocrypha (a standard scholarly reference), it details 35 writings with “Gospel” in the title, some of which you may know, including the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Mary. But Schneemelcher’s book only includes surviving gospels or the ones whose titles are at least known."
The canon was first declared in the end of the 4th century. Why weren't all the gospels included? Well, to start off, the new testament was never made to be comprehensive list of all the writing ever written about Jesus or the church. In fact, the church until today, has lot of books it considers as written by the apostles or early church father themselves yet never made it to the Bible.
Letter of Barnabas
Shepherd of Hermas
Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians
Gospel of the Hebrews
Apocalypse of Peter
Acts of Paul
and many many more.
This isn't something denied by the church. The early church simply had certain requirements which it had to decide on and some works were not considered scripture. From my research long ago, one of the requirements was that the works had to be regarded as scripture by many Christians. Some works, like the gospels had near universal acceptance. Some like Revelation, James, Jude, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John and Hebrews made it while the ones mentioned above, did not.
NOTE: I am placing this reply here so to keep it from breaking the other conversation above.
However, Mark DID NOT write the gospel of Mark, Matthew DID NOT write the gospel of Matthew, Luke DID NOT write the gospel of Luke, John DID NOT write the gospel of John. Hell, John did not even write the Revelation. From my little amount of knowledge about the NT, only 5 of the epistles can actually be attributed to the anonymous author known as Saul/Paul. ONLY FIVE of the NT books were actually written by the same author. All the others show evidence from advanced writing analysis that all were written by many, many authors. IIRC, Hebrews was analyzed to have been written by as many as eight different authors. Since the entire NT was written by as many as 20+ different authors, this smacks of a group conspiracy to write documents so as to further the enlsavement of mankind by switching from violent mean ass drunk father of the OT to a pot smoking hippie of the NT.
As for the gospel of Thomas, it does matter because it is the only gospel to survive advanced writing analysis and show only one person authored it, although it still can only be an anonymous attribution. ALL OTHER gospels ever found show to be written by as many as two to five persons for EACH gospel written. And your precious John gospel was written by as many as 4 to 6 persons.
Get out of your mom's basement. You are a self-claimed engineer. You know how to do actual true research. Go do it.
Because like all religitards, they are deluded by their unsubstantiated FAITH — Falsehoods Assumptions Innuendos Treachery and Hogkum.
Actually, the second explanation is the simplest. Those "vast stretches of land" are not so vast when they are port cities, except Hierapolis, which was only a few hours from a port city. How can you so easily deal with these delusions?
"The early church simply had certain requirements which it had to decide on and some works were not considered scripture."
"Bel and the Dragon" made it. "Susanna" made it.
Yes. My Bible does actually have those. Thanks for pointing that out. Though they're in my Bible as part of Daniel.
"In fact, the church until today, has lot of books it considers as written by the apostles"
The same church that used to sell splinters of the cross, and bones of Jesus and saints, for a modest finders fee obviously.
"the four canonical gospels are said to be contemporaneous accounts of Jesus' life and ministry, the recollections of four of his apostles (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). But careful analysis of these texts suggests otherwise, since from a historian's perspective they seem to be responding to issues and events relating to life in the Holy Lands decades after Jesus' death. Moreover, given their different and sometimes conflicting accounts of his life, we have no choice but to conclude that some of them must contain some degree of "invented history." Worse yet, discoveries in the sands of Egypt have "recovered" evidence of diverse approaches to Christianity, especially in the very early stages of its evolution. These so-called Gnostic gospels paint a very different picture of Christ from the one which orthodox Christians in the day envisioned, and following in their wake, most Christians today do also."
"scholars cannot speak—certainly not with any sense of comfort—about the original stimulus producing this religion. That is, no contemporary Jewish or Roman account constitutes primary, external evidence of the actual events of Jesus' life. The closest we come is a brief mention by the Roman historian Tacitusrecounting Nero's cruelty to a sect called Christianos, in the eyes of most Romans at the time a pathetic mob of doom-speakers. To Tacitus, that is, the emperor's savage recrimination against this demented, benighted cult was unwarranted and only served to prove that Nero was a savage and deranged bully, not that Tacitus felt anyone should sympathize with Christians. His point seems to be that civilized people should be ashamed to stand by and watch a sadist butcher morons."
"For the historian, insurmountable difficulties surround Jesus himself. Too little information about the actual man in his day can be verified and too many people care about the interpretation of Christ's life and teaching, a situation which leaves historians with no real hope for achieving consensus. The gospels themselves only exacerbate the problem, since they entail numerous difficulties starting with the very language in which they were published. For all practical purposes, then, Christianity enters history with the appearance of Saint Paul whose writings are the earliest datable Christian documents. In the next three centuries, as the new religion slowly spread across the Roman world, it becomes easier and easier to track its development up to its consummate political triumph, Constantine's conversion in the early fourth century. Research on the evolution of early Christianity and the complex path it followed up to its eventual domination of the West has uncovered an unparalleled wealth of diverse perspectives on Christ, many of which were branded heresies and subsequently disappeared from the historical record. But now archaeology has brought to light several of the texts composed by authors later denounced as subversives. These so-called Gnostic Gospels demonstrate the immense creativity of early Christians and the rich abundance of possibilities inherent within the religion itself."
"At the very heart of Christianity lies the life of Jesus Christ, which from nearly every perspective imaginable involves complications of some sort. Believers can choose to focus on Christ's human suffering or divine transcendence, theologians are left to debate the specific details of his resurrection and, without any contemporary portraits to go by, artists have little or no guidance in depicting him. Most problematical of all, an array of accounts now known as the Gospels ascribed to various disciples connected with him, present different and sometimes incompatible recollections of his teachings. But of all those struggling to situate him in some kind of framework, historians perhaps face the most intimidating challenge of all, trying to figure out what-really-happened in the wake of Jesus' life."
"Indeed, the first century CE presents an excellent example of the difficulties encountered in dealing with the various types of histories. As "remembered history," for instance, the four canonical gospels are said to be contemporaneous accounts of Jesus' life and ministry, the recollections of four of his apostles (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). But careful analysis of these texts suggests otherwise, since from a historian's perspective they seem to be responding to issues and events relating to life in the Holy Lands decades after Jesus' death. Moreover, given their different and sometimes conflicting accounts of his life, we have no choice but to conclude that some of them must contain some degree of "invented history." Worse yet, discoveries in the sands of Egypt have "recovered" evidence of diverse approaches to Christianity, especially in the very early stages of its evolution. These so-called Gnostic gospels paint a very different picture of Christ from the one which orthodox Christians in the day envisioned, and following in their wake, most Christians today do also."
"With all this, savvy historians tend to steer a wide course around Jesus himself. Particularly given the yawning vacuum of external sources for primordial Christianity, scholars cannot speak—certainly not with any sense of comfort—about the original stimulus producing this religion. That is, no contemporary Jewish or Roman account constitutes primary, external evidence of the actual events of Jesus' life. The closest we come is a brief mention by the Roman historian Tacitusrecounting Nero's cruelty to a sect called Christianos, in the eyes of most Romans at the time a pathetic mob of doom-speakers. To Tacitus, that is, the emperor's savage recrimination against this demented, benighted cult was unwarranted and only served to prove that Nero was a savage and deranged bully, not that Tacitus felt anyone should sympathize with Christians. His point seems to be that civilized people should be ashamed to stand by and watch a sadist butcher morons."
"Likewise, the Jewish historian and general Josephus also notes the existence of early Christians, but he was active several decades after Jesus' life and thus cannot serve as an eyewitness to the central events lying at the heart of Christianity. Also, he writes in the aftermath of the Roman holocaust which destroyed the Second Temple in 70 CE and inaugurated the infamous diaspora, the Romans' general eviction of the Jews from the Holy Lands. Like Tacitus, then, Josephus' primary attention seems to rest not on Christianity itself but the plight and political crises facing his own people in his day."
"It's a fair question to ask if Jesus even knew Greek, and yet that is the language in which his words are recorded.
Whether or not he did, one thing is clear, the reason the authors of the Gospels chose to write their accounts of Jesus' life in Greek. As the international language of science, philosophy and commerce, both intellectual and economic, the Greek tongue would in those days have reached a much wider audience than Aramaic or Hebrew. The result is that the gospels seem unlikely to represent the actual words spoken by Christ"
...and that's a site where the bias is in favour of Christian beliefs.