Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Reality of Christmas

The Catholic leagues response to the atheist billboard at the lincoln tunnel says "you know its real: this season celebrate Jesus." Well do we know its real, lets look at some problems with Christmas.I am not going to spend time on overall facts like the lack of contemporary evidence for Jesus at all because that encompasses more than the supposed spirit of christmas the virgin birth of Jesus.
The first reality of Christmas I will point out is the date of Dec 25th is actually a pagan holiday. It was already being celebrated. So basically the Christians stole the holiday. Now this does not work as evidence that the Jesus myth is a copy of pagan beliefs, as early Christians did not celebrate christmas until the 3rd or 4th Century. So the earliest Christians did not celebrate his birth on Dec 25th. There was some dispute over when Jesus was born. Dates such as Jan 4th were also discussed.
Speaking of problems with Jesus' time of birth, we have a big gap in time between the 2 birth narratives. We have Jesus born during King Herods reign and when Quirinius was Governor. Here is an excerpt from a book called "Jesus Interrupted" written by New Testament Scholar Bart Ehrman to explain this problem:
"If the Gospels are right that Jesus’ birth occurred during Herod’s reign, then Luke cannot also be right that it happened when Quirinius was the governor of Syria. We know from a range of other historical sources, including the Roman historian Tacitus, the Jewish historian Josephus, and several ancient inscriptions, that Quirinius did not become governor of Syria until 6 CE, ten years after the death of Herod."(page33-34)

How are we suppose to believe this when the gospels have such a large gap in between birth narratives.

The next problem with Christmas comes again in the forms of the gospels. We have both Luke and Matthew providing us the narratives for his birth. Both, wanted to have Jesus fulfill 2 supposed prophecies. The first prophecy is to be born of a virgin and the second was to be a decendent of David. Now how do they get this accomplished, he is born of Mary who is supposedly a virgin, more on that later. Even though the virgin birth is a misreading of the actual arabic word for "young girl" and not virgin after all. We still achieve this. The problem comes in when you see how they get him through David's bloodline. Guess how they do it?
If you guessed through Joseph, the non biological father, you guessed right. Both gospels fulfill this through a man he is not even really the blood relative of. Don't believe me check for yourselves: Luke 3:23–38 and Matthew 1:1–17. So either he fulfills one prophecy or the other but since Joseph not Mary is the descendant of David, the virgin birth makes the bloodline impossible.

Speaking of virgin births,how can one believe this. I mean seriously the idea that she lied never came into your head? Do we have motive for lying? I say we certainly do, the death penalty for adultery is a pretty big motive. Where can we find the death penalty for adultery, that's right the bible:
lev 20:10
If there is a man who commits adultery with another man's wife, one who commits adultery with his friend's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.

John 8:4-7
and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery.
5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”

So we see motive for Mary to believe, and since Joseph probably loved Mary he convinced himself as well. What makes the John quote so interesting, is it shows this law spanned well past that time as the earliest and best manuscripts do not have this quote. It does not appear in manuscripts until hundreds of years later. So we have motive for lying, and its far more likely than an actual virgin birth, so that makes it more believable. I find this far more likely and there are other possibilities that are also more likely.

So do I know its real, not a chance. I know its a myth and the reasons should begin to come to your heads now as well.

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