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Old 02-22-2004, 12:14 AM   #46
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I'm with that. Your professor needs to get his head out of his ass, if I may say so. The letters contained in the the NT are period letters and the fact that they are religious has nothign to do with their value. Would he toss out letters from one bliever of Mithras to another?

Then there's the BS notion that the Church altered all of the material. It may have been the era before the printing press but people did have the documents kicking around and an attempt to modify them would have been protested, and at the very least we would hear about teh crushing of heretics who held heretical versions of scriptures. We have documents on all kinds of heresies. Besides the CHurch didn't exist in anythign resembling a homogenous institution until the 4th Century with Constantine and even then it was split with deep divides and many different views into the 5th and 6th centuries. The only period where large scale changes could have occurred was the so called "Dark Ages" in Western Europe. But that doesn't work because the Eastern Church remained separate and there aren't significant differences in manuscripts between East and West. Furthermore the Roman Church didn't become a monolithic authoritarian institution until the 11th Century. Prior to that the Popes save for a few extraordinary figures held only limited power, sometimes not extending beyond Rome itself. The Early Middle Ages were a period of national theocracies with the kings in charge of the Church in thier kingdoms. As a final blow to the alteration argument the texts used in modern translations all date back toteh 4th and 5th centuries, periods where basic doctrine was sill being worked out and it still wasn't clear which school of Christianthought would win out. About the only changes rendered to scripture are the later incorperation of margin notes into the body of texts by later copiers in Paul's letters (which can be identified by a change in writng style) and the alteration of many female names into masculine form to justify the exclusion of women from religious office. The first is a copying error and the second involves the change of a few letters at the end of names and even witht he changes made a great many significant women remain in NT texts.

It is true that there a alot of varian translations, but the fact is that a lot of these aren't very scholarly. i sue the NRSV which is one of the more exact translations. The popular NIV is flawed as in a number of areas exactness was sacrificed to make it an easier read. And other translations are even more guilty of this. It all depends on the purpose of the translation. One done for a general audience of a below average reading level won't be great for scholarly purposes.
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Old 02-22-2004, 03:58 PM   #47
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Here's an interesting article about the type of Catholicism that Mel practices

http://www.boston.com/news/local/art...r_catholicism/
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:15 PM   #48
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Originally posted by meegannie


Primary sources don't have to be unbiased, though. If they did, historians wouldn't have any primary sources, since every source is biased or not completely trustworthy in some way.

This is very true. I once did a research project on medieval universities for my RenFaire group. I did sixteen months of research, using a huge primary source, documents from medieval universities (translated since I don't read Latin). The documents from the University of Paris were all church documents since that university in the Middle Ages was under direct church control. Of course these documents had bias and opinion in them. Did you know that if you were a teacher in the university and allowed a dance *in your house* you'd be fired? If I hadn't used those documents I would have been fd.
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:52 PM   #49
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Though based on my knowledge of teh region I'd say there's nothing in the Old Testament which greatly contradicts other historical documents and archaeology, in a general sense,
Jericho and the trumpets - much of it is wrong.

I believe that carbon dating has shown serious inconsistencies with that story (it was an earthquake, not trumpets (clearly), and it did not occur in the timeframe indicated in the Bible).

David was likely a minor king, from what I remember, yet he is a great leader in the Bible.

There are many others, disproved by science, but I don't recall them right now, as it's been years since I've taken those classes.
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Old 02-22-2004, 05:35 PM   #50
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Hears my though about using the bible as hisitorical document or a literal document when you look like stories of the rapture or the end of the world theory and take them to literally then you get people being cauight up in the thought good chirstian as one said" risisng from the ground like cirque de soleil acrobats and meeting God in mid air to be taken to heaven instead of being more concerend about how they are aligning their lives in a way that the stories of the bible would suggest that is "love thy neighbour"..

Without circumstance time and place, literally context etc.. the bible is open to interpretation. People will argue six ways fromsunday what this means or what that meant or if that happened and they won't see the meaning behind it. I think it is a fundemnetal difference in Christianity how literally we interpret the bible. I have met those who can't seperate the sybolisim and i have met those who would think as the bible as a mother goose fairy tale ..

Myself what bet odds that yes the Bible probably does have historical content which is actual .. I think ink difficulty comes in seperating the histrical content form the spirtual content and unless I missed the message no where in the bible does it say to take it literally. I think about how it was said Jesus spoke in parables and I wonder

Quote:
Matthew 13 Matthew 13
10The disciples came to him and asked, "Why do you speak to the people in parables?" 11He replied, "The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them
Is it easier then for us to see these are parables and try aline our lives with that message then to take the Bible literally. There are definitely certain parts of the bible that are easier for me to understand when I read them in a spiritual way but in some parts the opposite is true as well.. You can find and make sense out of the historical parts of early christians and the church and tribes in Israel in parts of the book of Acts for historiacl relevance .
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Old 02-22-2004, 05:56 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
Jericho and the trumpets - much of it is wrong.

I believe that carbon dating has shown serious inconsistencies with that story (it was an earthquake, not trumpets (clearly), and it did not occur in the timeframe indicated in the Bible).
Where does it say the trumpets were responsible for bringing down the wall of Jericho? The Hebrews marched around Jericho and sounded their trumpets in obedience to God. God brought down the wall. If you want to call it an earthquake.....

The Old Testament tells of many instances where God acts - we will always get lost if we try to explain the event by some other "natural" phenomena.
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Old 02-22-2004, 06:42 PM   #52
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I haven't yet read most of the discussion here, but in regards to Jericho, Anitram is right. The story of Jericho in the OT is probably a myth. I learned this last year in a relgion class (VERY interesting class, very knowledgable Professor/Ordained minister). Jericho "fell" three times I believe, but none of these three instances occur near enough to the time described in the Bible to lend any archaeological evidence to the story in the Bible.
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Old 02-22-2004, 06:56 PM   #53
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Quote:
"There is no interpretation of scripture ... that is unaffected by the passions, convictions, and perceptions of the interpreter,
There is no reading of the Bible that is completely free of ideological constraints. We carry our thoughts, opinions and concerns to the text every time we read it

The timing of the earthquake and the manner in which it selectively took down the city wall suggests something other than a natural calamity. A Divine Force was at work. In the New Testament, we read,

"By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days. By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient" (Hebrews 11:30-31).

While this interesting account belongs to ancient Hebrew history, it is a story full of present meaning and application. For one thing, it is an instructive example of what happens when people put their trust in God even in the face of impossible situations.
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Old 02-22-2004, 08:24 PM   #54
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Originally posted by nbcrusader
God brought down the wall. If you want to call it an earthquake.....
Please. We can do without the religious condescension here.

Do you think if I were a Buddhist, I would agree with you?

The wall was physically brought down by an earthquake. The idea God brought it down is a statement of your faith, not a statement of fact.
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Old 02-22-2004, 09:02 PM   #55
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Quote:
Please. We can do without the religious condescension here.
An earthquake brought this about, god brought this about a n act of nature blah blah...
I can't dispute these points you bring up.anitram .
but this is in regards to the Bible in a religious contexts and if I am not mistaken scientests have proven the timeline on that the wall coming down that is .. but once again is this argument about what brought down the wall , wheither it is a myth or what the lesson is behind it.. your getting into an argument on history here.

In the story itself is a nice tale about people ralying together for a common good, can you see the message in that. Despite if a supernatural being brougt about an earthquake or not

A Buddhist I do believe would see the message in that
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Old 02-22-2004, 09:02 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
Do you think if I were a Buddhist, I would agree with you?
I don't plan on twisting or shrinking my faith so that it will be agreeable to a Buddhist.
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Old 02-22-2004, 09:07 PM   #57
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p.s God transcends Church I can say that cause I dont believe in any organized church just my faith and in that I find stories I find some historical context but must of all I try and find the message behind it.. thats what the bible and scripture brings to me.. So as that relates to Mel Gibsons movie I am interested to hear the story .. I am sure it will be powerful but it's not going to make me think one way or another different then what my faith is today.. when I think of the passion of Christ I dont think of who or who is not to blame I think of the sacrifice and what that means to me .. how humbling that is .. a story of forgiveness love and ultimate sacrifice that I am in awe of
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Old 02-22-2004, 11:46 PM   #58
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antiram, you missed teh key item in my post whihc was geenral. The traditional dating of Biblical events is problematic at best. For Example recent studies have lead to a fair ammount of discussion over exactly whihc Pharohs were the ones mentioned in Exodus (many scholars discount Ramsees).

The history expressed in the Hebrew Bible doesn't really contradictmodern view of Isarael being a minor kingdom. From Joshua up until Samuel the Israelites are basically loose confederation of tribes under the religious rule of Judge. Samuel unites them a good deal and Saul becomes teh first king of a unified Israel around a traditional date of the middle 11th century BC (say 1050-1040). There's anarchy some devasting defeats and David doesn't become King until arond 1000 (again a traditional date as all of them will be the preciseness of these is of considerable debate) and the Kingdom doesn't rach its apogee util the time of Solomon (around 970). The Kingdom has a brief period of emminence of 40years or so and splits by around 930. After that aside from a few brief interludes of strong kings its all down hill and neither Judah or Israel will have anywhere near the dominance seen in Solomon's reign. Isarael is wiped outof history around 720 but it was just one of several minor kingdoms in teh region for much of that time. Judah falls in the 580s. So we have a period of dominance of maybe 50-60 years in the 10th Century BC then two kingdoms of varying importance (they shared the region with about six others), and generally shrinking importance for another couple centuries. Hardly a radical claim. My history of that period in the Middle East but from what I know such an account doesn't flagrantly contradict the archaeology or the other documentary evidence.

As to the miracles described, several factors should be considered. If natural phenomena can be found well then whether God had anythign to do with it, is a matter of faith not a matter of history. Plus radio carbon dating has a fair margin of error, it's a lot better than it used to be and newer techniques exist but it's accuracy can be affected by any number of variables (knowing the science behind it is a good idea and depending on the circumstances and method used it can either be very accurate or not worth the time). And errors in dating in ancient manuscripts is quite common (dates are one area where scribes made many errors a prime example is the errors due to there once being two Christian dating systems one which dated to the birth of Christ and another to the Passion). Add to that, the fact the reasoning which produced teh traditional dates has been called in to question quite a lot in the last decade or two.

I don't take the Old Testament to be absolutely literal and consider what it says about God and the relation of a people and individuals to Him to be paramount. I don't think it wise to completely write the Old Testament off as fiction. There is a fair ammout of anti-religious bias as well as bias agaisnt sources with oral ancestries (Celtic documents which began as oral traditions or of which were written down late or of which only late copies exist are generally disregarded over Roman, Saxon and Norman sources). That's not to say it's all historians, far from it but such biases do exist and we would be fools not to be aware of them. There is too much unknown about this period in world histroy to write off the history presented in teh Bible as total fiction.
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Old 02-24-2004, 02:51 AM   #59
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Me Gibson in his own words....

http://www.adl.org/Interfaith/gibson_ii.asp

Pretty disturbing since he claims he believes everything his father taught him... (which seems to include anti-semitism).

Ignorance breeds ignorance.
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Old 02-24-2004, 07:09 AM   #60
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Here is the whole quote in context of the conversation with Gibson. Not pieces put together to make him look badly. I am one of the first on this board to cry fowl when I think someone is being hateful towards those of the Jewish faith.

[Q]"My dad taught me my faith and I believe what he taught me. The man never lied to me in his life. He lost his mother at two years of age. He lost his father at 15. He went through the Depression. He signed up for World War Two, served his country fighting the forces of fascism. Came back, worked very hard physically, raised a family, put a roof over my head, clothed me, fed me, taught me my faith, loved me. I love him back. So I'll slug it out, until my heart is black and blue, if anyone ever tries to hurt him. [/Q]and after stating this the reporter asked to clarify if Gibson believed the Holocaust happened.[Q]"I have friends and parents of friends who have numbers on their arms. The guy who taught me Spanish was a Holocaust survivor. He worked in a concentration camp in France. Yes, of course. Atrocities happened." [/Q]

I do not believe it it is anti-semitism. The danger is in once again posting piece of a quote.

Shall we take all of the quotes and disect them in the contex of the entire articles incuding questions and follow up questions?
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