Jesus never existed!

by Layla33 63 Replies latest jw friends

  • FlyingHighNow
    Making him an even more nebulous and shadowy figure in the pages of history.

    Which is not his fault. We all know history is skewed.

  • MissingLink

    If he was divine he could have easily had some physical proof preserved. We have proof that much less important people lived back then, but nothing for the J man. Maybe there was someone named Jesus that people liked, but clearly not divine. The legend became a million times what the man was. This is a common pattern with myths in all societies.

    For those who "just believe" - I feel sorry for you. The one thing that I thought was good about the JWs is that they CLAIMED to use logic and reason and proof.

  • FlyingHighNow
    For those who "just believe" - I feel sorry for you.

    Why feel sorry? And on the divinity subject: maybe it wasn't important to him to leave all sorts of physical evidence, if in fact none exists. I still am very interested in the reasons why, people who've left JWs, want for Jesus not to have existed. The motivation behind the desire is intriguing.

  • AK - Jeff
    AK - Jeff

    I haven't read the entire thread due to time constraints:

    Has anyone seen this movie?

    Entitiled "The God Who Wasn't There"


  • AGuest
    maybe it wasn't important to him to leave all sorts of physical evidence...

    You mean, so that we could actually walk by faith... and not by sight? Hmmmmmm... what a concept...


    A slave of christ,


  • Gopher
    I still am very interested in the reasons why, people who've left JWs, want for Jesus not to have existed. The motivation behind the desire is intriguing.

    This question could also be inverted: why do people want for Jesus to have existed? Is it the feeling of security knowing that after we die something wonderful will happen? Perhaps that's why believers feel sorry for non-believers, because they don't have anything to hope for?

    As far as my "motivation", I will say this: after deciding not to go back to the JW's, I examined everything I'd ever been told about religion and spirituality. I saw there are millions of ways to live and believe. Did I need to fill the vacuum with another religion? NO. I decided religion was a bunch of people telling you what you should think and how you should act. They didn't really have any special insight.

    What about the idea of God himself (or herself or itself)? I considered that God, if one exists, has left mankind to its own devices for a very long time. Many regular people looking for relief from dire circumstances turn to a God, and get none -- while others believe that God can make them rich -- and some evil people who claim to represent God do in fact do very well in this world. Seeing that God seemed distant from mankind made me agnostic.

    Later as I examined the subject again, I discerned that believing in God is all about belief / faith (as Shelby / Aguest said in the previous post). So the question was, do I really see enough evidence personally for belief? I mean, Christians don't believe in the tribal gods of native Americans or of Africans or in the gods of Hindus. What is the Christian's reasons for wanting these other gods (worshipped by millions) to not exist?

    For whatever reasons you don't believe in non-Christian gods, I don't believe in the God of the Bible. Just not enough evidence for me.

  • FlyingHighNow

    Gopher, were you raised as a JW? If not, were you raised in a fundamentalist home? I've noted that the staunchest agnostics and atheists on this forum tend to be either raised in the org or some other strict fundy type religion or philosophy. So I ask those intent on proving that Jesus or God never existed, what is your motivation? Why do you feel this need to disprove?

    Thank goodness I wasn't raised in the org or a fundy religion. My father did not attend church. My mother took us to the Episcopal church, a very non fundy church, but allowed us the freedom to explore other churches and read of eastern philosophy, astrology, etc. It would not have bothered her if we had expressed agnosticism or even atheism. To grow up in that kind of free atomosphere was wonderful.

  • Gopher

    Yes I was raised JW. I don't know whether that makes me more "staunch" or not, except I do not accept things now without what I consider sufficient evidence. I did that as a JW, and never will again.

    And I must say that I don't think I've been trying to prove Jesus never existed. I don't see enough evidence that he did, and the concurrent historical records are scant or nonexistent. Again, I think the burden of proof is on those who make assertions not backed up by history. Either unimpeachable evidence needs to be provided that Jesus did exist, or else the believer would do best just to say what AGuest said -- that believers walk by faith and not by sight.

    I have friends and relatives who are believers, and I do not in any way feel like I know any more than they do. I just personally don't see enough evidence to make me want to believe in one god more than another, or in any god more than a myth (such as the tooth fairy or Santa).

    Again I ask you, why do you reject the gods of millions of people in Africa, India, and of indigenous Americans? They might ask you why you're trying to "disprove" the existence of the gods they worship. You probably mean no disrespect to such ones, but you just look at things differently than they do.

  • FlyingHighNow
    Yes I was raised JW. I don't know whether that makes me more "staunch" or not,

    I am pointing out that I have noted, for a few years here, JWDers who speak the most emphatically against the existence of God or Jesus, tend be raised inside the org or they were raised in a staunch, controlling, fundy religion of some kind. And I find that the motivation to prove there is not a god or gods or Jesus often stems from the fear of being controlled. "If there is a god or there is a Jesus, he must be mean, demanding and controlling. That doesn't make sense (as it shouldn't make sense). Therefore, there can't be a god or gods or Jesus. They must be fictitious. I'll rest better if there isn't a god, gods, goddesses or Jesus."

    Really, why discuss matters like this if you all are convinced there is no Jesus? Why does it matter so much to you then? I'd venture to say that deep down you do believe Jesus was real and you're trying very hard to convince yourselves that he didn't. Otherwise, you'd go about your lives concentrating on other issues.

  • Gopher

    Nobody knows for sure whether there really is a creator-deity, and if so what kind of person-being that is. There have been thousands of guesses. But how can one know for sure?

    Yes I was raised in a controlling fundy religion. Other people have had lots of worse experiences than I.

    Again, I'm not trying to prove anything here. I really think the burden of proof is on someone who asserts the existence of an invisible being. I merely do not believe. I discuss matters like this because it comes up in conversation. So many people have their lives influenced or even ruled by their belief, that I cannot ignore it. So if someone asks my viewpoint, I sure will give it. I do not spend my life concentrating on my atheism. Yes it does frame some of my viewpoints, but by and large I live day-to-day working and interacting without even broaching the subject.

    Deep down, I do not believe Jesus was real. Or if he existed, he is/was nowhere near the mystical figure he is made out to be in the New Testament as we have it today. I know a lot of people put their hope in him, and have a lot invested in him. I don't have any more emotionally invested in Jesus than I do in Zeus or other gods people have worshipped. It's just that Jesus is so prominent in the culture in which I live, that I have no choice but to acknowledge and deal with it.

    If overwhelming, unimpeachable evidence of one of the gods described by mankind existed, it would no longer be a "belief" but a "fact". At that point I would no longer be an atheist.

    Here's what we don't know about god or gods (from my friend August Berkshire here in Minnesota):

    We don’t know what gods are composed of.
    We don’t know what gods’ attributes are.
    We don’t know how many gods there are.
    We don’t know where gods are.
    We don’t know where gods come from or, alternately,
    how it is possible for them to always exist.
    We don’t know what mechanisms gods use to create or
    change anything.
    We don’t know what the “supernatural” is, nor how it is
    capable of interacting with the natural world.
    In other words, we know absolutely nothing about gods.

    It takes nine leaps of faith to believe in a god:

    The first leap of faith is that a supernatural realm even exists.
    Second, that beings of some sort exist in this realm.
    Third, that these beings have consciousness.
    Fourth, that at least one of these beings is eternal.
    Fifth, that this being is capable of creating something from nothing.
    Sixth, that this being is capable of interfering with the universe after it is created (i.e. miracles).
    Seventh, eighth, and ninth, that this being is all-knowing,all-powerful, and all-loving.
    If people want to believe in a god more specific to a particular religion, then some additional leaps of faith are necessary.

    All this is to say if there is a god (or a son of a god who represents him), I want a more clear path. I want something less mystical than the current situation. If there is a loving God who does indeed judge me, then surely you agree he created the human mind. And in that mind, he put the capacity to reason and question. If there is a god, all this atheist is doing is using the God-given ability to reason and be skeptical rather than accepting things just because someone else said it is so. I'm sure such a god would not object to my using that capacity, in fact he might even find it a bit amusing.

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