Christian Archeology

Archeology

Abrahamic religion, you know, the one with the cross...

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Re: Christian Archeology

#21  Postby Leucius Charinus » Jan 07, 2017 12:56 am

Was Nazareth near Metropolis ?
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the fabrication of the Christians is a fiction of men composed by wickedness. "

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Re: Christian Archeology

#22  Postby Alan B » Jan 07, 2017 11:10 am

Of course! :snooty:

I've seen the documentary by His Holiness Fritz Lang. :whistle:
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Re: Christian Archeology

#23  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 2:19 pm

This whole thread is missing the point. It is a historical fact that there were many little religious sects around in Roman-occupied Palestine, some of them aimed at resisting the Romans, so the early christians would have been one of them. So what?
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Re: Christian Archeology

#24  Postby duvduv » Jan 08, 2017 2:27 pm

There's a big so what...The fact that an entire industry exists to support the idea of Christianity in the first or second century in Judea, when not a shred of evidence exists that such a sect even existed then.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#25  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 3:25 pm

duvduv wrote:There's a big so what...The fact that an entire industry exists to support the idea of Christianity in the first or second century in Judea, when not a shred of evidence exists that such a sect even existed then.

No. The real "so what?" is that one of the many sects exising in Palestine during the Roman occupation was one that ended up being exploited by emperor Augustus (who modified it, of course). Surely, you are not denyiing that such sects existed? :scratch:
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Re: Christian Archeology

#26  Postby duvduv » Jan 08, 2017 3:31 pm

No evidence exists for the existence of any Christian communities in Judea. Period. Of course none exists for Galatia, Thessalonika, etc. either.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#27  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 3:41 pm

They probably weren't called "Christians" (even in Aramaic), but you surely aren't denying that there were religious sects around that attempted to resist Roman occupation, and that one of these spread during subsequent years (eg, to Ireland, which had the first christian monks, AFAIK).
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Re: Christian Archeology

#28  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 3:50 pm

... Anyhow, where and how DO you claim that christianity arose? You seem to be simply saying that history is bunk, period.
BTW, I am no lessmof n atheist for accepting that a religious sect arose in Palestine and spread to Ireland. then elsewhere.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#29  Postby duvduv » Jan 08, 2017 3:55 pm

I have no idea where groups may have spread. Simply that there were no sects with the NT who believed in the Jesus figure. He didn't exist anyway.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#30  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 4:18 pm

You have the right to deny everything, but recorded history started well before 2000 years ago.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#31  Postby Alan B » Jan 08, 2017 4:43 pm

There were probably many religious groups/sects that existed in those times and with each one vying for supremacy, the powers that be would have had a hard time maintaining control of the masses without showing favour to one or more of those groups. To do so would have been a recipe for internecine conflict which could easily get out of hand.

Since religion was the main tool by which the priests/politicians of the day maintained control, the answer would be to found/invent/'discover' a new religion. This new religion would have to have no connection to any of the current religions and where the 'prophet' could not be part of the public conscience or memory.

I suspect that there was documentation (now lost) that pointed to a few possibilities and while sifting through this lot, Jesus' name fell out of the hat. That's probably a bit simplistic - there was, I sure, a lot of learned 'argy-bargy' going on over quite a protracted period.

With the backing of the Roman state, the new religion soon became a popular tool for populace control and which was noticed by other rulers who, er, 'converted'.

What might have clinched it for Jesus (it could have been anyone) was the Sermon on the Mount to which his name became attached (someone must have written it!). A convenient document which could be interpreted in more than one way. The rest of the stories are probably made-up fantasy to promote a 'moral' substance for the rulers to impress upon the masses.

As for Christian Archaeology, well, that may be just 'Pie in the Sky'. Between the alleged birth of Jesus (if indeed he actually existed) and the founding of Christianity as a major religion, I would suspect there is no evidential archaeology to be found.

Just a thought. I could be proved wrong, of course.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#32  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 08, 2017 8:19 pm

Leucius Charinus wrote:Was Nazareth near Metropolis ?

Nazareth is near where my favourite singer (Esther Ofarim, also referred to as "Ha Kol" - hebrew for The Voice!) was born, so I don't think it's any more fictional that she is! OK, she's getting on a bit, but she was fantastic in the '60's, singing in many languages, including Hebrew, German and English (with difficulty in the last case).

EDIT: Of course that says nothing about about the bible, which is mainly religious fantasy mixed up with stories of dubious origin.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#33  Postby RealityRules » Jan 10, 2017 12:49 am

DavidMcC wrote:
This whole thread is missing the point. It is a historical fact that there were many little religious sects around in Roman-occupied Palestine, some of them aimed at resisting the Romans, so the early Christians would have been one of them..

duvduv wrote:...an entire industry exists to support the idea of Christianity in the first or second century in Judea, when not a shred of evidence exists that such a sect even existed then.
DavidMcC wrote:
No. The real "so what?" is that one of the many sects exising in Palestine during the Roman occupation was one that ended up being exploited by emperor Augustus (who modified it, of course). Surely, you are not denying that such sects existed? :scratch:


duvduv wrote:No evidence exists for the existence of any Christian communities in Judea. Period. Of course none exists for Galatia, Thessalonika, etc. either.
DavidMcC wrote:
They probably weren't called "Christians" (even in Aramaic), but you surely aren't denying that there were religious sects around that attempted to resist Roman occupation, and that one of these spread during subsequent years (eg, to Ireland, which had the first Christian monks, AFAIK).

DavidMcC wrote:
... Anyhow, where and how DO you claim that Christianity arose? You seem to be simply saying that history is bunk, period.

David, you're the one making the claim that "the early Christians would have been one of" "many little religious sects around in Roman-occupied Palestine" "that ended up being exploited by emperor Augustus".

The burden of proof is an ethic: "they who aver must prove". Over to you.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#34  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 10, 2017 12:11 pm

OK, I saw a TV program about the history of the Roman occupation of Palestine. Since the Romans were asiduous record keepers, and 2000 years isn't that long in terms of human history, I saw no reason to doubt the validity of the claims made in what seemed like an authioritative history program. Of course it was TV, not the internet, so I didn't get any links from it. Do you automatically say that history is bunk?
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Re: Christian Archeology

#35  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 10, 2017 12:28 pm

... Here's a link, and the relevant text on it:
http://www.angelfire.com/rant/truthaboutpalestine/TheHistoryofPalestine.html
...
(63 B.C. - 395 A.D.) ROMAN ERA: The beginning of the Roman era was more a period of Jewish-Roman cooperation than conflict, and the Jews enjoyed substantial autonomy especially in religious matters. In fact, one of the early Roman Governors of Palestine was Herod, a Jew who was married to a Maccabean princess and who was thus seen by many as a continuation of the Hasmonean line. It was during his reign that Jesus (Prophet Issa) was born in Palestine. The followers of Jesus were persecuted by the Romans at the instigation of Jewish leaders who considered him a Jewish heretic. The conflicts that had tore the Jews apart before the Roman conquest however continued and while many Jewish parties counseled continued cooperation with Rome, others considered Roman rule intolerable. In 66 A.D. a Jewish group called the Zealots began a bloody seven year rebellion which the Romans retaliated against by destroying the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. After the revolt, the Romans restored autonomy to the Jews who again revolted in 132 A.D. Although the Bar Kochba revolt led to heavy Roman casualties, the Romans were able to suppress it after three years. During the revolt, the Romans killed and enslaved thousands of Jews and after it was put down they passed a decree forbidding Jews from entering Jerusalem. Even before the revolt, Jews outside Palestine far outnumbered those within it. Afterwards, many Jews who had remained in Palestine also left, leaving Jews as only a small minority in the area. Meanwhile throughout the Roman Empire Christianity was spreading and becoming seen as a challenge to the Romans. While most of the followers of Jesus had been forced to leave Palestine early on because of persecution there, Christians began being persecuted throughout the Empire in about 160 A.D. Under the pressure of severe persecution,the Christians divided into a number of sects but their numbers continued to grow. In 313 A.D. Constantine, one of the contenders for power in the Roman Empire at a time of political discord, changed the entire situation by issuing an edict that Christians under his rule would be given freedom. In 323 Constantine became the sole ruler of the Roman Emperor and set himself the task of strengthening the Christian Church. Constantine built numerous churches and frowned upon what he considered heretical sects and schisms hoping that he could gain unity in his empire through a united Christianity. In 330, Constantine formally converted to Christianity and moved his capital from Rome to Constantinople. In 383, Christianity was declared the imperial state religion.

It is worth noting that poltics and religion were inextricably linked in that period and region, so that religuious sects were efectively political parties.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#36  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 10, 2017 12:32 pm

... I think duvduv just has an excess of skepticism about well-established history.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#37  Postby DavidMcC » Jan 10, 2017 7:18 pm

... I would like to correct a small error in one of my recent posts in thie thread: it wasn't emperor Augustus who converted to christianity, it was emperor Constantine. Sorry.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#38  Postby RealityRules » Jan 10, 2017 8:51 pm

DavidMcC wrote:OK, I saw a TV program about the history of the Roman occupation of Palestine. Since the Romans were asiduous record keepers, and 2000 years isn't that long in terms of human history, I saw no reason to doubt the validity of the claims made in what seemed like an authioritative history program. Of course it was TV, not the internet, so I didn't get any links from it. Do you automatically say that history is bunk?

No, but we are talking specific history here: supposed 1st to early 2nd century Christian history.

DavidMcC wrote:... Here's a link, and the relevant text on it:
http://www.angelfire.com/rant/truthaboutpalestine/TheHistoryofPalestine.html
(63 B.C. - 395 A.D.) ROMAN ERA: The beginning of the Roman era was more a period of Jewish-Roman cooperation than conflict, and the Jews enjoyed substantial autonomy especially in religious matters. In fact, one of the early Roman Governors of Palestine was Herod, a Jew who was married to a Maccabean princess and who was thus seen by many as a continuation of the Hasmonean line. It was during his reign that Jesus (Prophet Issa) was born in Palestine. The followers of Jesus were persecuted by the Romans at the instigation of Jewish leaders who considered him a Jewish heretic. The conflicts that had tore the Jews apart before the Roman conquest however continued and while many Jewish parties counseled continued cooperation with Rome, others considered Roman rule intolerable. In 66 A.D. a Jewish group called the Zealots began a bloody seven year rebellion which the Romans retaliated against by destroying the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. After the revolt, the Romans restored autonomy to the Jews who again revolted in 132 A.D. Although the Bar Kochba revolt led to heavy Roman casualties, the Romans were able to suppress it after three years. During the revolt, the Romans killed and enslaved thousands of Jews and after it was put down they passed a decree forbidding Jews from entering Jerusalem. Even before the revolt, Jews outside Palestine far outnumbered those within it. Afterwards, many Jews who had remained in Palestine also left, leaving Jews as only a small minority in the area. Meanwhile throughout the Roman Empire 'Christianity' was spreading and becoming seen as a challenge to the Romans. While most of the followers of Jesus had been forced to leave Palestine early on because of persecution there, Christians began being persecuted throughout the Empire in about 160 A.D. Under the pressure of severe persecution,the Christians divided into a number of sects but their numbers continued to grow. In 313 A.D. Constantine, one of the contenders for power in the Roman Empire at a time of political discord, changed the entire situation by issuing an edict that Christians under his rule would be given freedom. In 323 Constantine became the sole ruler of the Roman Emperor and set himself the task of strengthening the Christian Church. Constantine built numerous churches and frowned upon what he considered heretical sects and schisms hoping that he could gain unity in his empire through a united Christianity. In 330, Constantine formally converted to Christianity and moved his capital from Rome to Constantinople. In 383, Christianity was declared the imperial state religion.

It is worth noting that politics and religion were inextricably linked in that period and region, so that religious sects were effectively political parties.

This is likely to be true (though may be hard to substantiate) -

    "..the Jews who again revolted in 132 A.D. Although the Bar Kochba revolt led to heavy Roman casualties, the Romans were able to suppress it after three years. During the revolt, the Romans killed and enslaved thousands of Jews and after it was put down they passed a decree forbidding Jews from entering Jerusalem. Even before the revolt, Jews outside Palestine far outnumbered those within it. Afterwards, many Jews who had remained in Palestine also left, leaving Jews as only a small minority in the area."

These assertions are unsubstantiated, and may not be true -

    "Meanwhile, throughout the Roman Empire 'Christianity' was spreading and becoming seen as a challenge to the Romans. While most of the followers of Jesus had been forced to leave Palestine early on because of persecution there, Christians began being persecuted throughout the Empire in about 160 A.D. Under the pressure of severe persecution, the Christians divided into a number of sects but their numbers continued to grow."

They are based on assertions that Christianity was in full swing by the mid 1st century. Those assertions are simply derived from narratives based on the New Testament narratives.

We do have

    a/ two separate, but vague references by Seutonius to (i) a 'Chrestus' and (ii) 'Christians' in Rome,

    b/ reference to 'Christian' disturbances in Bythnia & Pontus ~111-113 by Pliny-the-Younger, and

    Tacitus's reference to Chrestians causing problems, though that may be an interpolated/fraudulent reference.
But who these Chrestians or Christians are is not clear.


There is no evidence that "the followers of Jesus had been forced to leave Palestine early on because of persecution there".

There is no evidence that "the Christians divided into a number of sects", or that they did so under "the pressure of severe persecution".


There was quite a lot of diversity of thought in those days (though probably outside Judaism in Judea). See

and
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Re: Christian Archeology

#39  Postby Leucius Charinus » Jan 11, 2017 2:19 am

DavidMcC wrote:... I think duvduv just has an excess of skepticism about well-established history.


The only problem with that is - in the case of the conflict between the preservers of the "One True Jesus Story" and the preservers of the "Other Fascinating Jesus Stories" - the "well established history" was assembled by tax exempt officials of the "Nicene Church Organisation" and its descendents. They and their "history" are likely quite corrupt.

An historical narrative without underlying historical evidence is to be questioned.

Especially given that it consists largely of church dogma and other related church propaganda

Archaeological evidence is highly regarded but where is it?

Figurines of a thousand cult gods have been found in the Roman Empire, thousands of shrines and hundreds of temples but - arguably - none of these relate to the Christian cult prior to the 4th century.
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Re: Christian Archeology

#40  Postby Alan B » Jan 11, 2017 12:50 pm

And any records might only have consisted of a single document which would be never copied. If someone didn't like it then it would be destroyed. One only needs consider the destruction of the Alexandria Library to realize how little importance was appeared to be attached to the written record in those times.
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