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About Dan56

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  1. The decline is actually a prophecy that would precede the second coming of Christ. As Paul put it; "That day shall not come, except there come a falling away first." (2 Thessalonians 2:3). How about that, you've meticulously documented the evidence that you often seek, the bible said it would happen and you've inadvertently proved it to be true.
  2. And that's why its accepted by faith.. Everyone can read the gospels and decide for themselves whether the story and players are real or just an unknown collaborated hoax. But as I've mentioned before, people lie for a reason, so for what purpose did the new testament authors have to fabricate an imaginary tale of someone who you claim never existed? What was the payoff? Persecution, affliction, and death? It all rings true for me, but everyone makes that decision for themselves. My examples of other historical figures is just to illustrate that anyone's biography can be questioned. When people decide not to believe something, they attack the narrative. When you can't disprove the story, question the source. The traditional view recognizes Mark as a Palestinian Jew who wrote his Gospel using Peter as his source. Matthew & John's gospels aren't narrations per se, but rather reports and quotes of what they witnessed. And Jesus literally spoke to Paul on the road to Damascus and called him to be an apostle. Paul interacted and had a lot to do with other disciples too. If Jesus wasn't real, consider the odds of a few uneducated backwoods hicks from Galilee ever being able to pull-off the biggest scam in history? I suspect that the inspiration behind the New Testament came from a source much higher up.
  3. How is it wasting ones life to believe in something beyond the here & now? The hope of something better and eternal gives life meaning & purpose, and this soul soothing peace and well being adds to the quality of life. By learning, your really inferring that someone see things in the same light that you see them. Perhaps the shoe is on the other foot? The human error could be yours? I can't learn that your correct because I don't believe what you believe. Faith has never been an argument. A person simply states why they believe as they do, its not a seductive trap, its just a reality beyond what you perceive to be real. Accepting that fact might ease your frustration.
  4. I don't insist that you hate the biblical God, you've done that yourself by referring to him as a blood thirsty maniac who commits genocide, kills his own son, etc. If there is no God, but I believe He exist, then I'm a fool.... If the biblical God is real, but you reject Him, then your the fool... One of us is wrong and making a foolish choice, time will tell. The only difference is that if I'm wrong, no harm no foul.. But if your wrong?
  5. We've been to the moon, 12 men have walked on the moon, none of them testified that there were little green men there. Do you believe them? I do. Coincidentally, 12 men walked with Christ, all of them testified that Jesus was on Earth. You don't believe them, but I do.
  6. Its the gospel according to Luke, Mark, Matthew, & John....... Not Dan. Why would there be any historical records of a peasant from Nazareth? There's no historical records outside of the Koran about Mohammad, or for that matter, not much about William Shakespeare either. There were at list 70 apostles sent out who testified about Christ, all of Rome eventually accepted his story as gospel. I doubt an imaginary figure could have changed the world. But nothing would convince a person who chooses not to believe, they will deny it all happened no matter the documentation. I simply choose to roll with it and accept by faith that its true. Note that there's no evidence of anyone from the time saying it wasn't true, no disciple who walked with Christ said, "I didn't see any miracles". No one said, "He has not risen from his tomb, here's his body over here". It should be easy to prove an untruth, but no one from that time period did because they couldn't.
  7. Despite his biblical fame, little is known about Pilate. Only a small number of historical accounts that date close to his lifetime survive today. With limited information, we cannot understand his psychological makeup or assign an accurate biography of Pilate. When he went before Pilate, Jesus answered some questions but did not defend himself. There is no contradiction here.. When Jesus refuses to speak, it is because the law does not require him to testify against himself. Jesus would not interact with Herod because he was merely hoping to see some miracle. If Jesus had defended himself by speaking or performing miracles, it could have prevented his death. When Jesus refused to speak, it was when he was in the presence of the Jews. When Jesus did speak with Pilate, it was inside his residence, where the Jews would not enter. The conversation was not of his guilt or innocence, but about his identity and his mission. The gospel writers wrote by inspiration ( 2 Timothy 3:16-17), they weren't with Jesus when he met the Samaritan woman at the well, his trial, or crucifixion (accept John). People who choose to believe the biblical account of these things trust what God revealed by revelation more than a persons recollection. The "Word" was and is too important to rely on human memory.
  8. If you could travel to the past and stop Booth from killing Lincoln or Oswald from killing Kennedy, your interference with what had happened could very well change what will happen. That's what I meant by freewill and time being interlinked, what we do in the present determines the future.
  9. By your logic, its also safe to presume that Lincoln did not write the Gettysburg address either... You can't trust any historical records. There's no solid evidence that Cleopatra ever existed or that Pontius Pilate ever ordered anyone to be executed, etc. The 4 witnesses who recorded the crucifixion were persecuted or killed for their testimony, but none reneged on what they recorded. The fact is, people who lie are generally not willing to die in order to maintain a falsehood. That in itself gives credibility to the truth.
  10. 5 people mentioned it. King David (Psalms 22:18), Matthew 27:35, Mark 15:24, Luke 23:34, John 19:24... That's multiple sources... The 4 gospels were written between 40 and 70 AD. My Caesar comparison was not diversionary, its very relevant in proving ancient history. For example; Very little hard evidence about Cleopatra exists. Most of what know about her today is based on a biography written by Plutarch 200 years after her death. Early accounts of her life were given the anti-Cleopatra, pro-Roman slant promoted by Octavian. So with regards to the details of the crucifixion, I doubt that 500 written reports would meet with your satisfaction? It boils down to whether a person chooses to believe in the accuracy of what people of any time period recorded. Would you believe that Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address if there were no pictures? Did Lincoln write it or was it the work of Edward Everett?
  11. For one, more than one person recorded the same thing. Can you prove that the story of Julius Caesar being stabbed to death by the senate was accurately reported? I personally trust the source, but nearly every historical event is accepted by faith. We really cant even trust that anything on CNN is accurately reported.
  12. Its only argumentative when you insist someone see's things the way you do. You think its an annoyance when Christians try to convert nonbelievers, but I'd suggest that your frustration could be construed as an attempt towards reverse conversion? Faith is based on something, its seldom blind, but your correct, its futile to discuss the virtues of a faith with someone who's committed to it, especially when you have nothing better to offer. I simply point out why I believe as I do, disagreement or nonacceptance doesn't bother me... I only chimed in here because my name was mentioned, no religion intended.
  13. If they accurately reported what happened, then there's no bias about it.... It was unbiased confirmation of a 1000 year old prophecy. What was their agenda? To prove Roman soldiers gambled?
  14. I simply referred to something that I've previously and accurately posted before. No sense in being redundant, especially with people who get annoyed with ongoing biblical references. "They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture" (Psalm 22:18). "And they parted his raiment, and cast lots" (Luke 23:34)... "And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots" (Matthew 27:35). So that's the word for word prophecy and its recorded new testament fruition. Sounds pretty specific to me!
  15. There's no factual proof, but plenty of evidence, and that evidence is sufficient for me. I accept it because it has convinced me, but not everyone can or will believe what can't be physically demonstrated, and some still wouldn't believe their own eyes even if it were. A thousand years before Christ, the Psalmist wrote that Romans soldiers would gamble for the cloak of the Messiah at his crucifixion.. Just a coincidence to you, but a divine prophecy to me. When someone describes something like that in detail, I don't see how it could be chalked-off as a lucky guess.