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View Diary: Fox News dreams of a Very White Christmas (270 comments)

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  •  Historical, Verifiable, Fact (8+ / 0-)

    These are all words that don't apply to Jesus. There exists no contemporaneous description of Jesus. So not only do we have no idea what he looked like, we have no idea if he actually existed. If one takes the Bible on faith and believes Jesus existed then most likely looked like a typical man of Semitic decent. Interestingly enough, people who consider themselves to be Semitic generally check the "White" box when asked to identify their race - I know that is the case for my family. Although more recently there has been some movement towards demanding an additional category.

    •  Existence (1+ / 0-)
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      A person (in fact a number of persons) named Jesus (actually Yeshua) certainly existed.  Whether THE Yeshua existed is the unproven point.

      •  yes (0+ / 0-)

        I don't think it's a large leap of faith to believe that a man existed that pissed of local priests enough to convince the Roman in charge to put him to death.  They were threatened by him.

        As far as him being the son of God, that certainly is more open to a larger leap of faith.

        The Senate has no guts. The House has no brains.

        by gossamer1234 on Thu Dec 12, 2013 at 04:02:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's not a large leap of faith to think that (1+ / 0-)
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          someone named Josephine Courageous MacGillicuddy exists today ... but that's irrelevant. The question isn't how large a leap of faith is required to believe something, it's -- what is the supporting evidence for it?

          •  there have been (1+ / 0-)
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            many (dozens? hundreds?) of men that were executed that claimed to be the Messiah.  It's a fact.  It's PROBABLE that there was a man from Nazareth named Jesus that was one of these.  Evidently he had a large following and a church was formed to teach of his life.  

            Most scientists agree that man made global warming is real. Most historians agree that Jesus was a real man.

            I think the only real question is whether or not he performed miracles and if his followers lied about it. If they lied about it, why was Jesus the one that became so important while the others mostly disappeared from history.

            The Senate has no guts. The House has no brains.

            by gossamer1234 on Thu Dec 12, 2013 at 05:56:14 PM PST

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            •  Historians don't agree Jesus "of Nazareth" existed (2+ / 0-)
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              jes2, Wildfaery

              Nazareth was probably not even a city at the time that this guy who we only know by the name "Jesse" (AKA Jesus) supposedly existed. It was a funerary area. As a Jew, Jess wouldn't have lived anywhere near a place where they buried the dead. In fact, the whole claim that he came from Nazareth is based on the scripture that says he will be a called a nazirite. A nazirite is someone who doesn't cut his hair and follows Jewish purity laws, including the avoidance of corpses. It has nothing to do with being from Nazareth. However, early Christian scholars were so ignorant of Jewish scripture, they didn't know what that word meant.

              Furthermore, the existence of Jesus is not a matter for history, any more than the existence of Zeus or Thor would be. It is a matter of culture, folklore, and religion. Perhaps religious scholars could help interpret stories about this, but nobody's going to find a historical Thor any more than they are going to find a historical Jesus. Typical historians would be utterly unequipped to examine narratives so steeped in mixtures of mythology and folklore.

              Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

              by tekno2600 on Thu Dec 12, 2013 at 08:34:46 PM PST

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              •  Thank you (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                It amazes me how people laugh at Megan for what a majority of Americans believe: That Jesus was (is?) a white dude.

                And, many of those same people laughing believe that Jesus did exist. You would think if they are serious about worshipping this god, that they would know exactly what proof exists. (There is not any reputable evidence of an existence of a Jesus.)

                Plus, he performed all of these miracles (which nobody wrote about outside of biblical references.) And, he is the son of a deity who created the universe in six days (which goes against everything we know of our existence based on science.)

                So, to sum up:

                1) There is a god that created everything (silence)
                2) His son existed and performed miracles (silence)
                3) He was white (laughter, how ridiculous)
                4) Santa Claus was white, too (of course we know that is not true, creating universes is one thing, but elves in the north pole is a bridge too far for most Americans.)


              •  funerary area? (0+ / 0-)

                not really.  couple of corpses found a few miles from the city doesn't exactly make the whole city a burial ground

                The Senate has no guts. The House has no brains.

                by gossamer1234 on Fri Dec 13, 2013 at 12:14:49 PM PST

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                •  It was a large burial area even in prehistoric. (0+ / 0-)

                  times. There's no record of it being a real city until around the 3rd century A.D., way too late for Mr. Jesse of Nazareth to have lived there.

                  Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                  by tekno2600 on Sun Dec 15, 2013 at 04:26:23 PM PST

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                  •  not true (0+ / 0-)

                    there is proof that  Nazareth existed BEFORE Jesus Christ was on earth as the messiah.  

                    And by "record" do you mean recorded history or physical evidence.  Because there is physical evidence.

                    And yes, most historians agree that Jesus existed as a man.  As a supernatural being? That's another thing.

                    The Senate has no guts. The House has no brains.

                    by gossamer1234 on Mon Dec 16, 2013 at 12:06:57 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Not historians who have actually looked into it. (1+ / 0-)
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                      Like Richard Carrier:

                    •  You don't actually cite any evidence for your (0+ / 0-)

                      claims. You just say that evidence exists. However, even religious sources contradict you. According to the Anchor Bible Dictionary: "Nazareth is not mentioned in ancient Jewish sources earlier than the third century AD." There may have been camps of people who came and went in this area, probably never numbering more than a few hundred. But, it is not likely that anyone, including this so-called Jesus character, would have claimed this area as his home "town." As I mentioned previously, it is likely that the entire claim about "Jesus" being from "Nazareth" is based on the misunderstand from Jewish scripture that has the messiah "will be called a nazirite." That is a person who follow Jewish purity laws. It has nothing to do with being from Nazareth. Early Christian scholars did not seem to understand many basic things about the stories they were concocting for their mythical messiah. As the stories spread outside of Palestine, they didn't even appear to have a correct understanding of geography and customs, hence the confusion about the existence of Nazareth at the time they claim.

                      Also, there's the more basic issue that's super annoying. "Jesus Christ" is NOT a name. It's like saying Joe the Savior. There are a million guys with that name Joe and even a million messiah stories at the time. A real person would have had a real name. We know about people like Julius Ceasar and Pontius Pilate. But, there were a million people named Jesus. Nobody has even the remotest physical evidence on a person who fits this description at the time. And, the term Christ would have almost certainly not be ascribed to him at the time. So, you might as well just call him some dude that you wish existed to make yourself feel better about your life and your fear of death.

                      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                      by tekno2600 on Wed Dec 18, 2013 at 10:08:07 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

            •  Most scientists agree that God isn't real. (0+ / 0-)

              I don't think you know much about either science or history.

            •  I referred to supporting evidence -- you provide (0+ / 0-)

              none. "Most historians agree" is an argument from authority, and it isn't even true -- most historians haven't expressed a professional opinion on the matter. The issue isn't historians, it's historical evidence, and on that the historicity of Jesus is highly dubious.

              I think the only real question is whether or not he performed miracles and if his followers lied about it.

              This is incoherent. We don't know whether he had followers and if he did what they said ... all we have is "gospels" that were written long after the events they claim to report, woven from extant tales with some Roman politics thrown in. even if there were followers and they claimed miracles, they need not have lied, any more than people who frequent psychics are lying when they claim these charlatans have real psychic powers -- they are merely mistaken. Or when two witnesses testify inconsistently in court -- neither is necessarily lying.

              If they lied about it, why was Jesus the one that became so important while the others mostly disappeared from history.

              How about Mohammed? Do you think he must have really been the emissary of God? You really don't understand the nature of human culture. I suggest Howard Zinn's "People's History of the United States" ... and google Emmy Noether and Rosalind Franklin, critically important people you have never heard of.

      •  That's like saying Joe or Bill or Mike existed. (1+ / 0-)
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        Whether THE Yeshua existed is the unproven point.

        The burden of proof lies with those who claim it.

    •  There's a whole book on this topic, (0+ / 0-)

      which I recommend:

      "Optimism is better than despair." --Jack Layton, the late Canadian MP, liberal, and Christian.

      by lungfish on Thu Dec 12, 2013 at 08:47:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not strictly contemporaneous, but close to it! (1+ / 0-)
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      Scholars mostly agree that the earliest portions of the New Testament (including the earliest letters of Paul and the Gospel of Mark) were written within a couple of decades of his death.  If we had nothing before 1990 referring to President Kennedy or Martin Luther King, would we argue that they didn't exist, despite the numerous references to them since that time?  

      And it isn't just Christian sources who refer to Jesus.  Josephus, whose writing was pretty much contemporaneous with the New Testament, does as well.  The writings about Jesus aren't about somebody who lived centuries earlier, but about somebody who lived during the lifetime of the people doing the writing (or at most, within a couple of decades earlier).

      There are many legitimate questions that can be raised about Jesus, including the legitimacy of the infancy narratives in Matthew and Luke (and about which Paul and Mark apparently had no knowledge) and about whether he ever claimed to be divine, but the claim that he didn't exist at all seems as preposterous to me as the claim that the infancy narratives can without question be taken as literally true.

      Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

      by leevank on Thu Dec 12, 2013 at 10:28:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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