AGuest . . .
Peace to you, dear Size!
Since it is I you quoted . . . I take it you consider me dogmatic in my disbelief?
No, dear one, and I apologize for giving that impression (though I can see how you might think that). I stated that I could not fathom how "some" are dogmatic. I understand how you might think I was referring to you, but I really was generalizing a bit more than that...
I'm sorry if I gave that impression at some point . . . but that is not the case.
YOU didn't... and unlike some I am not adept at keeping my comments/responses as... ummmmm... concise as I probably should do. I TRULY wish I were as concise as some... and perhaps it's something I can and should improve on... but I am "how" I am... for now. Ihope you can understand that.
And I think what you quoted supports that rather than dogmatism, because I speak only of possibilities . . . not belief.
Yes, dear Size. YOUR comments allow for possibilities that others can do nothing but deny. I see that... and thought my comments addressed that. For instance, faith. YOUR faith. If I thought you had absolutely NONE, then I would have suggested you ask for SOME... not MORE. But after re-reading, I can see how you might feel that I was directing my "blows" regarding dogmatism at you, personally. The truth, however, is that in my responding to YOU... my thoughts regarding others were intertwined (is that a word? Perhaps "intwined" is more accurate...). My apologies if that was out of line (although, I didn't think it was, so...)...
There's that word again.
Yes, dear one (the greatest of love and peace to you!)... again. Because... well, what can I say: it is an important word... and action.
You are talking as if the Bible is evidence, but it isn't except where it is supported by appropriately dated historical artifacts and/or it agrees or approximately agrees with bona fide historical records most of which were written by, well, historians of the time.
The last part of that sentence is important - of the time. Where the Bible differs from other references is supporting hisorical references or artifacts.
I agree... and since you know I believe it has been tampered with I do not agree that ALL that is in the Bible IS accurate.
There is no record of Moses anywhere else but in the Bible.
Hmmmm. You forget the Quran, dear one... as well as potential other sources. Again, though, this goes to show my position that YOUR position... or maybe not yours but that of some... is that if WE don't know of it... it does not exist. That is a bit dogmatic, IMHO, considering that we don't KNOW... what we don't know. Indeed, there have been discoveries in the past 10 years that have either corroborated what IS accurate in the Bible (which I will expound on below)... and served as further corroboration for other sources. In that light, I am not as certain about that as you are, dear one, that there is no record... because as my Lord said to me, "All that I tell you IS written (but not necessarily in the Bible)... but not all that is written (including what is in the Bible) is what I will tell you.
For me, though, although I place my faith on what my Lord himself stated me as to Moses (and why following [his] "law" is spiritual "adultery")... which IS recorded... in more than just the Bible. Considering vast chasm between those who follow the Quran, however, and those who follow the Bible, I can't see how it would benefit the first to corroborate ANYTHING related to the second... or vice versa. Truly, the nation of Islam (which constitutes Ishmael's seed... who consider the seed of Isaac - Jews, etc. - their enemies... would NEVER profess something so common between the two...).
Same goes for King David
Again, I am not as certain as you are that there is no record other than what is in the Bible. This NY Times article seems to agree (and there are more sources, but this one seems to be pretty credible):
Saul of Tarsus (although Josephus does talk about a character named Saulus who persecuted Jewish insurectionists)...
There are also accounts written by "Luke", yet, neither is enough? Luke (or, for the sake of argument, whoever actually wrote the accounts attributed to "Luke") doesn't deny Saul's conduct and persecution of Christ's disciples... nor was Luke "inspired" to write his accounts (as some falsely claim). Rather, he was commissioned by "Theophilus". Why state that, if his accounts were fakes? Why not simply write them as the others, "To the holy ones," et al., rather than to "Theophilus"? What would LUKE have to gain from making up his accounts? Would he not simply have told "Theophilus"... "Look, there's nothing really going on - these people... who some call "christians"... are running around making stuff up... but none of it's really believable... and you would do better to just ignore it, if you ask me...". Why even BOTHER to write the accounts AS he did... for WHOM he did? Why make up HIS part with "Paul"? Talk about something making no sense...
Peter and John (the pseudo historical records written decades or even centuries after their alleged deaths do not count).
C'mon, dear one: while it does make sense that Peter didn't pen a gospel account (given his own conduct and lack of faith!)... why would someone make up letters and attribute them to him? I'm not saying the writings were made up... but why letters? Why not make up... and include... a gospel "according to Peter"? And why would Luke... who admits to not being called or led by holy spirit to write HIS accounts, include people who did not exist? Luke (or whoever literally wrote his accounts) was under no spirital obligation to right anything. He simply gave an account to Theophilus. That MEN chose to include his accounts in a [Bible] canon... AND say that they were inspired (although they are NOT)... does not negate the accounts, dear one.
There is historical evidence for the existence of Herrod and Pontius Pilate
but it would be a correlation fallacy to say that because these men existed whatever was recorded about them in the Bible is true unless there is corroborating evidence elsewhere.
I don't know how you can say that, dear one. Because, in essence, you are saying that UNLESS there is MORE than one record... KNOWN TO US... ALL records... regardless of the subject... are false. Yet, records are STILL BEING DISCOVERED. How many have been so in the past century or two? Were the things they attest to false BEFORE such additional records WERE discovered? This is the conundrum thinking such as yours poses for me. It suggests, again, that UNLESS WE KNOW OF IT... it does not exist. EVEN... if it exists!
Again, I have to ask: does something TRULY not exist... UNTIL "we" (and by we, I mean those whom many deign to be of some expertise) know of it? Was not Kepler 16b there... even before WE knew it was (either speculatorily... or "for sure")? I submit that there are BUTTLOADS of things... EVIDENCE... that exists... even though we haven't seen/heard of/discovered it... yet... and that OUR lack of knowledge does NOT negate its existence... or truth.
Statements put forth without proof are considered hearsay.
Nick... dear one... that we consider something "hearsay"... does not make it untrue. If that were the case, we would all "see" things as the WTBTS sees them: that a matter (for example, rape) did NOT occur... unless the woman cried out. Or that a sin/harm did NOT occur... unless two [totally unrelated] people saw it. I submit that, even if NO one other than the woman and man, etc., saw it... a woman very well could have been raped. And regardless of how many witnesses come forward... indeed, even if NONE come forward... a sin/harm COULD have occurred.
True, the woman might have to PROVE that she was indeed raped... in order to bring charges against the perpetrator. Or a child might have to PROVE that he/she was molested by an adult... in order to bring charges against the perpetrator. However, that the person cannot PROVE rape/molestation... does NOT mean it did not occur.
And this is what I mean by dogmatism from the "other" camp: one camp says you MUST have two or more witnesses... or the victim has NO grounds to complain. While the other camp says that unless you have a witness... nothing occurred. The person who underwent these crimes/events, however, knows that they DID occur. Regardless of whether anyone else believes them. Others can say what they will... and choose to ignore what the person is claiming or even believe them. But that does not negate what actually OCCURRED.
Credibility is, IMHO, very often subjective... although many try to SAY it's objective. Even incredible people can give credible testimony. They might not be believed, yes... but, again, that does not negate what actually occurred... and they are bearing witness to. It may not be accepted, yes. But... if it's the truth, it's the truth. Regardless of who believes it or not.
I truly do not want to make this a "perhaps here is where we need to agree to disagree" point. In that light, while I would be more than happy to move on... I am also more than happy to continue explaining why I believe as I do... and HOW... and so provide for those ask it (as you did)... a reason for MY faith. But that is the only person's faith I CAN respond to.
Again, peace to you both!
YOUR servant and a slave of Christ,