Josephus's "Antiquities" on Christ


#1

[left][font=Arial]Is the following entry real or forged???[/font][/left]
[left][font=Arial]How would you respond to the charges made on the website below??? Thanks and God Bless.[/font][/left]
*“Now, there was about this time, Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works; a teacher of such men as received the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ; and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.” *(Antiquities XVIII 63f)

jeromekahn123.tripod.com/newtestament/id13.html

The following quote is from the homepage:"
To have Christian “scholars” write on the history of Christianity and the biblical Jews is comparable to having Soviet Communists write on the Russian revolution and their form of socialism. What follows is the work of scholars without faith. "

Does anyone else see a tinge of hypocrisy in the statement??? Please correct me if I am wrong. :slight_smile: I strongly doubt the author would want secular history written by Christains as secular writers would be biased by his analogy. Thanks and God Bless.


#2

Does anyone else see a tinge of hypocrisy in the statement??? Please correct me if I am wrong. :slight_smile: I strongly doubt the author would want secular history written by Christains as secular writers would be biased by his analogy. Thanks and God Bless.

To clarify on what I meant by a tinge of hypocrisy, the website’s author statement rules out Christians/Jews and atheists from writing the histories. Everything is a double-edged sword. If Christians cannot write or comment on their own history becasue of their “faith”, neither can an the atheist because of their “faith”. I suppose the only type of individual that would meet the criteria laid out would be an honest agnostic. Thanks and God Bless.


#3

From everything that I’ve read (and remember, I’m Catholic), it is probable that parts of it are forged. That doesn’t mean they absolutely are, but there is a real possibility. For example it is suggested that, “…if it be lawful to call him a man,” was inserted somewhere down the line. However, it does seem like most historians agree that Josephus did mention Jesus in Antiquities, but not the way it reads in the manuscripts we have.


#4

The Arabic version of Josephus’ work lacks the Christian character of the version quoted above. It is believed that much, such as “if it be lawful to call him a man” was added, as it does not appear in the Arabic version. The Arabic version reads:

“At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good and [he] was known to be virtuous. Many people from among the Jew and other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive; accordingly, he was perhaps the messiah concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders.”

Notice the difference in tone, and how the Arabic account simply reports what his disciples claimed, rather than making those claims itself.


#5

[quote=slinky1882][left][font=Arial]Is the following entry real or forged???[/font][/left]

[left][font=Arial]How would you respond to the charges made on the website below??? Thanks and God Bless.[/font][/left]

*“Now, there was about this time, Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works; a teacher of such men as received the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ; and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.” *(Antiquities XVIII 63f)

jeromekahn123.tripod.com/newtestament/id13.html

The following quote is from the homepage:"

To have Christian “scholars” write on the history of Christianity and the biblical Jews is comparable to having Soviet Communists write on the Russian revolution and their form of socialism. What follows is the work of scholars without faith. "

Does anyone else see a tinge of hypocrisy in the statement??? Please correct me if I am wrong. :slight_smile: I strongly doubt the author would want secular history written by Christains as secular writers would be biased by his analogy. Thanks and God Bless.

[/quote]

You can read the antiquities here. It is in chapter 3 section 3. It is real, Origen commented on how Josephus mentioned Jesus.


#6

You can read the antiquities here. It is in chapter 3 section 3. It is real, Origen commented on how Josephus mentioned Jesus.

It’s VERY important to remember that the version cited in that link is 99% likely to NOT be the original. There is absolutely no reason that Josephus would have said “if it be lawful to call him a man”, or the other praises it claims in that passage, as Josephus gives almost no mention in the rest of his work to this “God-Man”, and was himself a non-Christian Jew. The non-Greek versions of the text do not contain those questionable phrases.

Those parts were likely added in by pious and well-intentioned Christians who felt it was improper for Christ to be discussed in such an unglorified manner. It is certainly true that Josephus wrote about Jesus, however.


#7

Right, the quotation is almost certainly interpolated. But the other remarks are ridiculous. As a matter of fact Soviet historians have written about the history of communism, and some of them have done good work. No ideology either qualifies or disqualifies people from writing good history. Being an insider has some virtues when writing about a religious/ideological tradition, and being an outsider has others.

Edwin


#8

[quote=jimmy]You can read the antiquities here. It is in chapter 3 section 3. It is real, Origen commented on how Josephus mentioned Jesus.
[/quote]

Origen wrote about a century or more after Josephus, so all this proves is that by the time of Origen copies of Josephus contained references to Jesus. Anyway, the question is not whether Josephus mentioned Jesus, but whether he mentioned him in a clearly Christian context (as others on the thread have pointed out).

Event the NewAdvent.org entry on Josephus, which is more accepting of the tradition, admits that the passage contains multiple interpolations.


#9

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