Gospel of St.Luke

Hi.

Saint Luke says “just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word”(Luke1:2)

According to this verse, he is not a eyewitness to his account and he just quoting Anonymous eyewitnesses and servants of the word.

So how can we trust him, historicaly and theologically?

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He was a follower of St Paul and was with him in Rome when he was martired.

Which means that he also knew St. Peter who was also in Rome around the same time.

So what he wrote about came from the lips of these 2 great Apostles.

The early Church trusted what he wrote as to be worthy of being included with the other 3 Gospels that make up our New Testament. He is also credited with writing the “Acts of the Apostles”.

For all these reasons I can place my trust on the Gospel According to Luke.

Peace…

Just so you know, the concept of ‘critique’ implies that the object of critique does not measure up to the subject of a critique.

Tell ya what - I will make you a deal. I will give you a thousand historically accurate eyewitness testimonies of Jesus if you can give me just ONE historically accurate eyewitness testimony of the Roman Emperor Nero. If I cannot fulfill my half of the deal, I will give you a thousand dollars. If you cannot produce such contemporary testimony, you give me a thousand dollars. Do we have a deal?

You would be a fool for accepting, because you would loose.

Can you cite anybody who actually knew Nero Caesar who wrote about him? What about someone who knew someone who knew Nero Caesar. Can you cite me such a name? What about someone - ANYONE - who even lived during Nero’s lifetime, who ever wrote about him? What about someone - ANYONE - who KNEW anyone who lived during Nero’s lifetime? The man was the EMPEROR of Rome for fourteen years! Surely there is SOMEBODY.

You cannot cite any such source. And, notice that I have not imposed some idea that the sources must NOT be Roman citizens (as some insist on non-Christian historians who wrote about Jesus, because, apparently, Christian historians who write about Jesus are presumed to be unreliable, but Roman historians who write about Nero are presumed to be reliable, even though there WERE no such Roman historians).

The “most contemporary” historian to write about the Emperor of the Roman Empire for fourteen years wrote about 100 years after Nero’s death. The next closest “contemporary” authors (all of - ahem - two of them) wrote fifty years later (about 150 years after Nero’s death). 150 years after the death of the most powerful man in the world, we have all of three historical accounts. All written by Romans. All were of the Senatorial class.

The scant three authors who wrote about Nero between 100-150 years after his death were Tacitus, Suetonius and Cassius Dio, who were all members of the Roman Senatorial caste. I have no idea who was the first non-Roman historian to write about Nero, but I think I am safe in assuming that it was a LONG time later.

Now consider Jesus. He was Emperor of nothing. He was a member of a conquered race living in a conquered land. He was one of MANY ragtag preachers (Acts 5:34-37 describes the testimony of a Pharisee named Gamaliel who testified on behalf of the Apostles, while citing the failed ministries of other such “teachers” such as Theudas and Judas the Galilean). Jesus attracted a small dedicated following of only twelve men (Gamaliel says that Theudas had 400). His ministry was largely ineffective, as he was condemned by a crowd of his own countrymen in favor of an acknowledged criminal. He was sentenced to a slave’s death by a Roman governor - the cruelest death that the Roman Empire could devise - scourging and crucifixion. He hung on the Cross naked. When he was taken down, he did not even have a grave, but was buried in a donated grave. His execution took only three hours, and the Roman soldiers who executed him were home in time for supper.

In the 150 years after the death of Jesus, how many historians wrote about his life and activities? At least 65 (and I refer to authors, not writings - if we count according to writings, it numbers into the mid-500’s). And some were primary witnesses (such as St. John).

They were all Christians. And Nero’s scant three historians were all elite Romans (who wrote exactly three accounts, none of which were contemporary, - not 500+).

Nero was the Emperor of the Roman Empire for fourteen years. Jesus was the head of twelve Apostles for some three years before being executed by the very Empire that Nero would soon come to rule. And, yet, the ratio of historians is staggeringly unbalanced. 65 to 3 (or 500+ to 3, depending on how you count “sources”).

Who were the 65 historians who wrote about Jesus?

Because of some of the details he mentions in the story of Jesus birth it is very possible that he may have talked to our blessed mother as well.

The nativity and infancy narratives suggest strongly that Luke had access to Mary who related these events to him personally. Similarly, as a travelling companion of Paul, Luke had access to the inner circle of the early Church.

Because Luke was a physician, we can infer that his attention to detail was as rigorous as any trained professional in the field of sciences might exhibit.

The Early Church Fathers.

Did all the Early Church Fathers know Jesus and or His apostles?

The point was not whether the Fathers knew Jesus or the apostles, the point was that there 20 times the number of historians in the same period of time who wrote about JESUS (an obscure person from a tiny occupied country who died an ignominious death) as opposed to those who wrote about NERO CAESAR, the EMPEROR of ROME, who RULED an EMPIRE of hundreds of thousands of people, whose actions were literally the life and death of thousands of people, and who would have been ‘known’ by those and by also those who knew his predecessors and successors. . .

Are there any other purported ‘Messiah claimants’ of the time who have been written about and remembered, at length and in exhaustive detail, within the first couple of centuries of their death, for whom hundreds, then thousands, then millions, of people embraced that person as the Son of God and Savior of the World?

Because the Church, which is the pillar and foundation of the truth, and which under the guidance of the Holy Ghost is able to teach infallibly, says that we can trust him, that’s why. If you had to decide on your own which ancient writings were in fact inspired and which were not, how would you, relying just on your own authority, do such a thing? Obviously, you could not. Luckily for us, we have the Church, and the Church as a whole can make that decision.

Lucan.

gutenberg.org/ebooks/602?msg=welcome_stranger

I can’t find reference to more than 20 or so ECFs and only a few of those wrote before the middle of the second century. In addition, they all seem to be regarded as theologians rather than historians.

Your wager also seems to assume that we have all of the works of all of the Roman historians who wrote during that period. That assumption seems unwarranted.

In any case, even if we did have all of writings of all of the Roman historians and even if all of the ECFs were historians and even if that ratio really was 65:3, those facts wouldn’t support the contention that the author of Luke’s gospel was writing history.

Hi

What he wrote about came from the lips of these 2 great Apostles, because he was with St.Paul and he followed him and martired with him in Rome?

I don’t think so. It is not a good reason.

This answer is based on our faith in Catholic Church, without it, we can’t trust in what early church trusted. I’m looking for other reasons.

God Bless you.

Dear David,

My Question is not on existence of Lord Jesus.

Best Regards

What you mean?

It is not about possiblity, it is about being sure.

Dear Randy

He had access to saint Mary, the Mother of God and traveled with saint Paul, But My Question is “He wrote what they said to him? Just because he claimed it in 1:2?”

Best Regards

Hi

I’m looking for a reason whitch is not based on our faith in Church.

But this is exactly the period I cite.

In addition, they all seem to be regarded as theologians rather than historians.

Surely you realize that is is a silly claim. There WERE no such things as “historians” at the time. A “historian” was somebody who recorded history.

Your wager also seems to assume that we have all of the works of all of the Roman historians who wrote during that period. That assumption seems unwarranted.

I have never made any such assumption, and I am sure that we are unaware of many of them. But I do know that we have many works of non-pagan historians. It seems unlikely that the works of persecuted (Christian) criminals should eclipse the writings of faithful (pagan) Romans.

In any case, even if we did have all of writings of all of the Roman historians and even if all of the ECFs were historians and even if that ratio really was 65:3, those facts wouldn’t support the contention that the author of Luke’s gospel was writing history.

May I ask you to say what criteria you would accept?

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