Christianity is based on an event [death and resurrection of a palestinian jew named Jesus born to a virgin Mary] that never occurred in the PAST. Any human beings’ efforts, energies, money, resources, and time used to advance this ideology are fruitless. Why would any human being continue to believe in a lie? Although many Christians will claim they have some subjective un-examinable, non-testable experience that convinces them, IN REALITY there are four “proofs” [tangible evidences] that keep “thinking” human beings believing in an false ideology.
Before I begin my dissection of christianity’s “proofs” for truth, I will quote a verse from the manuscript tradition associated with 1 Peter (unknown author) “…always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15).
Introduction: The 4 Observable Proofs for Christianendom.
- The authenticity of the new testament documents.
- The Hebrew Bible (Old testament) “prophecizes” the coming of a Christian concept of messiah. And teaches a triune godhead nature of Yahweh.
- Historical reliability of the gospel accounts
- And the classic inference to the best explanation hypothesis for the “resurrection event”
Interestingly for each of these points Christianity scholars to this day are unable to develop a unanimous understanding on any of these points. There are extremes and opposing views within Christian scholarship. I hope to present some information of these opposing views and provide reasons that counter each of these points.
I will present a brief outline of responses to each of these claims by Christians. Hopefully by studying and analyzing these outlines, any human being will realize how Christianity is based on blind irrational faith in an unreal/fictious event.
1) The New Testament documents original content is unknown.
i) Claim: The New Testament Documents are poorly preserved, inauthentic, and corrupted with the addition of scribal manipulations of the text and shouldn’t be used to determine the theology or life of the historical jesus.
- The ideology [Christiantiy] is based on primarily 4 canonical gospel accounts and the alleged Paulian letters. Without the New Testament documents spread the ideology [Christianity] would not exist in today’s reality. Furthermore, if we ASSUME the original authors for any of these new testament documents like the gospels were “inspired’ by a non-human intelligence “god”, then where are the “inspired” words. It is impossible for Christians to select the “inspired” words from the non-“inspired” words. And, Christians are incapable to establishing the [A] variant reading in a UBS Greek new testament or any variant reading in any Greek New Testament correlates to the original “inspired” autograph wording. Since Christians are incapable of doing so, they cannot claim their text is from a non-human intelligence – hence (even with the ASSUMPTION the original authors for each NT document were receiving “inspiration) the Christian do not have access to this text with any absolute certainty (which is equivalent to saying there will always be doubt in authenticity and origin of the verses they read).
ii) How one can demonstrate the inauthentic, poorly preserved, inauthentic nature of the new testament documents.
- A field called New Testament textual criticism goal is to recover to the original autograph wording of each NT document. However this is an impossible goal based on the current manuscript tradition and inability for NT textual scholars to define unanimous definitions of the NT original autograph documents.
i. New Testament textual scholars are unable to agree on a unanimous definition of how the original new testament documents looked like (i.e. the Western or Alexandrian text type)
- This makes it IMPOSSIBLE to even know what new testament scholars text reconstructing back to. Are new testament scholars reconstructing back to the original autograph reading or some later edited copy of a NT document.
- Even NT scholars and publishers of Greek New Testament’s like the Nestle Aland are today claiming that the Earliest Attainable Text is not EQUAL to the original autograph wording. NT scholars are shifting from this perspective.
ii. The manuscript data for the New Testament documents are poor, far removed from the original autographs such that it makes it difficult for NT textual scholars to get back to the original wording.
- The continuous editions of the new testament documents with removal of verses in either Critical New Testament edition or translations makes the authenticity of any verse in the current manuscripts in jeopardy with earlier finds of manuscripts. Here are a few examples of verses that that have been considered inauthentic/corruption by current new testament scholars: 1 John 5:7, John 7:53-8:11, Mark 16-9:20. Furthermore there are more variants found that change the meaning of certain sentences or text such as the Mark 1:41 or Hebrew 2:9 variant.
- The authors are unknown for the gospel document as well as 6 of the 13 letters that were formerly attributed to Paul. If we do not know who the authors then how do we know what the intentions of these authors were in writing these documents. How do we know what genre these documents are? Are they midrash or ancient biographies? We do not know the competency of these authors and their abilities recording history from the oral tradition.
iii) Lastly, language of the New Testament Documents:
- There are numerous theories proposing the original language what the gospels were originally. But the greatest point is: We do not know what language Jesus really spoke or how many. Most likely Jesus spoke Aramaic so all the content we have today in Koine Greek is one entire language removed and we do not know how much the authors contracted, mistranslated, misunderstood, the words of Jesus. Why don’t we have any of the originals words of Jesus?
i. Christian scholars like to use the terms ipsissima verba and ipsissima vox to throw away the simple fact that the Gospel of John’s anonymous author clearly forged words into the historical jesus’s mouth. So we do not know exactly what the real historical jesus’s life contained based on the false information in the gospel accounts.
2.) Really what drives Christians over the top with “proofs” of their Religion is that the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) “prophecizes” the Christian concept of messiah and teaches the triune godhead. However, most of these “prophecies” Christians find in the Old Testament are merely Old Testament Hebrew taken out of context, mistranslated, and circular reasoning. Christians will all ready presuppose Christianity is true and then look for passes that support their claims. Ironically many Christian Scholars and Jews agree on the interpretations of the old testament like Isaiah 53’s suffering servant being Israel.
a. Just to demonstrate the DOUBT and Instability of this these Old testament “prophecies”. We do not know the actual authors for many of these Old testament documents and if these authors are really “prophets”. What is the evidence? That the authors are “prophets”. Also, even if they are prophets do we have their original content (How many people wrote the book of Isaiah?). But let’s assume we do have the content of these “prophets”, then which interpretation of these texts are correct. Since there are two at minimum or three interpretations of the Hebrew text of the Old testament, then which interpretation is correct? It’s a probability game. It’s 50-50 chance, a guess? If we apply this logic then why not just blindly pick a religion and guess what is the truth and stick with it.
iii) The New Testament documents alone are not historically reliable in providing true historical details of Jesus’s life or theology Jesus believed.
a. History is not the true absolute past. Historians only construct a theory about what occurred in the past. Historical facts cannot be tested like mathematic/scientific fact. So any source a historian uses to determine historical “facts” needs to be assessed critically. Even if a historians claims for something to be a historical fact it is not testable and should not be trusted at face value. Again if we were to read the New Testament documents at face value and trust them then why not read any other book and do the same.
b. This is a brilliant 9 minute presentation of the historical unreliability of the new testament documents: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bxPPZztGC4
4) Lastly, the bogus “inference to the best hypothesis” defense used by apologists to demonstrate the “death and resurrection” actually occurred..
a. Each of the “historical facts” used by Christian apologist themselves cannot be shown to be really true in the PAST. We will demonstrate the flaws in their assumption in these “facts” i.e. the “500” visions never occurred or the “empty tomb” never existed. But for arguments sake let’s ASSUME that all of these events and details really are true to the past.
Do these details really demonstrate that Triune Yahweh really resurrected on person of itself by another person of itself? For all we know devils could be deceiving people with visions. So regardless of a person’s sincere intention of belief: we do not know the origin of these assumed visions. Jews to this day cite Deuteronomy 13:1-4 and Zechariah 13:6 as proof the Christian messiah concept of not true.
b. There is an assumption that eyewitness testimony actually exist in the New Testament documents. However even if we ASSUME eyewitness testimony exist -How reliable is eyewitness testimony? The effort of the InnocenceProject and Elizabeth Loftus should be examined:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCswq5JDTaw Eyewitness testimony as a means of acquiring knowledge is unstable and unreliable.
c. The last and greatest point for Christian apologist. Christian apologist never discuss the existence of Yahweh from the Old testament. Yes Christians love to discuss the existence of “God”, but what is the proof Yahweh is real from the Hebrew bible. Anyone can write a statement “GodXYZ is the creator of everything” or claim to be “God”. Does this make GodXYZ real or the person claiming to be “God” real? No. Even if Christians can demonstrate there is an Intelligent Designer to this Universe that does not mean the Intelligent Designer has made contact with the human species. Usually Christians retroject their theology of “God” onto the intelligent Designer. Any religion can do that. And also they assume the supernatural or unseen realm favors their theology. Any religion can do that, what is the evidence.