Existence of Jesus Proven
This website proves that Jesus Christ was a real historical figure.
Some people say that Jesus was a mythical figure, and that there is no proof that a person named Jesus Christ ever existed, other than being mentioned simply in one book, that being the Bible.
However this is not correct, as the New Testament in the bible, is made up of many different accounts from different authors. So it's not just ''1 book''.
Another claim is that the authors of the accounts of the New Testament, lived far later than Jesus Christ. However this is not true aswell. The ''Letter of Peter'', and the ''Revelations to John'' in the New Testament, were written by Christ's Apostles, Peter and John, who were eyewitnesses to Jesus.
Also the gospels were written only a short time after Christ's earthly death in 33 AD.
''The Gospel Matthew'' was written around 80 AD, ''The Gospel of Mark'' around 65 AD, ''The Gospel of Luke'' about 80 AD, and ''The Gospel of John'' about 90 AD by the Apostle John.
However there is not just biblical accounts of Christ's life.
There have been literally hundreds of accounts of Jesus Christ's life on earth, written in the first 2 centuries after Christ's earthly life.
There are also non-Biblical, secular (non-religious) accounts of Jesus Christ, written soon after Christ's earthly death, proving his existence.
Below are some non-Biblical, secular (non-religious) accounts of Jesus Christ, written soon after Christ's earthly death.
Secular Accounts of Jesus Christ
Flavius Josephus (37 - 100 AD), a Jewish general and member of the priestly aristocracy of the Jews, who turned to the side of the Roman Empire in the great Jewish revolt of 66-70 AD. Josephus spent the rest of his life in or around Rome as an advisor and historian to three Roman emperors, Vespasian, Titus and Domitian. For centuries, the works of Josephus were more widely read in Europe than any book other than the Bible. They are invaluable sources of eyewitness testimony to the foundation and growth of Christianity in the 1st Century.
Flavius Josephus mentions New Testament events and people in some of his accounts. This was some of the most significant evidence against the theory that Jesus was simply just a myth, proving that Christ was a real historical figure.
Here is some of his accounts:
At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good, and he was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews 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.
After the death of the procurator Festus, when Albinus was about to succeed him, the high-priest Ananius considered it a favorable opportunity to assemble the Sanhedrin. He therefore caused James the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, and several others, to appear before this hastily assembled council, and pronounced upon them the sentence of death by stoning. All the wise men and strict observers of the law who were at Jerusalem expressed their disapprobation of this act...Some even went to Albinus himself, who had departed to Alexandria, to bring this breach of the law under his observation, and to inform him that Ananius had acted illegally in assembling the Sanhedrin without the Roman authority.
Now some of the Jews thought that the destruction of Herod's army came from God, and that very justly, as a punishment of what he did against John, that was called the Baptist: for Herod slew him, who was a good man, and commanded the Jews to exercise virtue, both as to righteousness towards one another, and piety towards God, and so to come to baptism; for that the washing [with water] would be acceptable to him, if they made use of it, not in order to the putting away [or the remission] of some sins [only], but for the purification of the body; supposing still that the soul was thoroughly purified beforehand by righteousness.
These three quotes from "Josephus'' really speak for themselves. Professor Shlomo Pines, a well known Israeli scholar, discusses the fact of Jesus' historicity and the references to Jesus by Flavius Josephus:
In fact, as far as probabilities go, no believing Christian could have produced such a neutral text: for him the only significant point about it could have been its attesting the historical evidence of Jesus. But the fact is that until modern times this particular hare (i.e. claiming Jesus is a hoax) was never started. Even the most bitter opponents of Christianity never expressed any doubt as to Jesus having really lived.
Suetonius was a secretary and historian to Hadrian, Emperor of Rome from 117 to 138 AD. Regarding Roman Emperor Claudius (41-54 AD) and the Riot of Rome in 49 AD, Suetonius wrote:
As the Jews were making constant disturbances at the instigation of Chrestus [Christ], he [Emperor Claudius] expelled them from Rome.
Interestingly, Acts 18:2 relates that Paul met Aquila and his wife Priscilla just after they left Italy because Emperor Claudius had expelled them.
Mara Bar-Serapion, a philosopher from Syria, wrote this letter to his son from prison sometime after 70 AD:
What advantage did the Athenians gain from putting Socrates to death? Famine and plague came upon them as a judgment for their crime. What advantage did the men of Samos gain from burning Pythagoras? In a moment their land was covered with sand. What advantage did the Jews gain from their executing their wise king? It was just after that that their kingdom was abolished. God justly avenged these three wise men: The Athenians died of hunger; the Samians were overwhelmed by the sea; the Jews, ruined and driven from their land, live in complete dispersion. But Socrates did not die for good; he lived on in the statue of Plato. Pythagoras did not die for good; he lived on in the statue of Hera. Nor did the wise king die for good; he lived on in the teaching which he had given.
This letter refers to Jesus as being the "wise king", and than mentions how Judea was abolished soon after Christ's earthly death. The writer is obviously not a Christian because he simply places Jesus on an equal level with Socrates and Pythagoras. Without bias in his reference to Jesus and the church, this letter is a valuable historical reference regarding the historicity of Jesus.
Pliny the Younger (62 - 113 AD) was the Roman Governor of Bithynia (present-day northwestern Turkey). Around 111 or 112 AD, he wrote the following letter to Emperor Trajan of Rome asking for advice on how to deal with Christians:
It is a rule, Sir, which I inviolably observe, to refer myself to you in all my doubts; for who is more capable of guiding my uncertainty or informing my ignorance? Having never been present at any trials of the Christians, I am unacquainted with the method and limits to be observed either in examining or punishing them. Whether any difference is to be allowed between the youngest and the adult; whether repentance admits to a pardon, or if a man has been once a Christian it avails him nothing to recant; whether the mere profession of Christianity, albeit without crimes, or only the crimes associated therewith are punishable -- in all these points I am greatly doubtful.
In the meanwhile, the method I have observed towards those who have denounced to me as Christians is this: I interrogated them whether they were Christians; if they confessed it I repeated the question twice again, adding the threat of capital punishment; if they still persevered, I ordered them to be executed. For whatever the nature of their creed might be, I could at least feel not doubt that contumacy and inflexible obstinacy deserved chastisement. There were others also possessed with the same infatuation, but being citizens of Rome, I directed them to be carried thither.
These accusations spread (as is usually the case) from the mere fact of the matter being investigated and several forms of the mischief came to light. A placard was put up, without any signature, accusing a large number of persons by name. Those who denied they were, or had ever been, Christians, who repeated after me an invocation to the gods, and offered adoration, with wine and frankincense, to your image, which I had ordered to be brought for that purpose, together with those of the gods, and who finally cursed Christ -- none of which acts, it is into performing -- these I thought it proper to discharge. Others who were named by that informer at first confessed themselves Christians, and then denied it; true, they had been of that persuasion but they had quitted it, some three years, others many years, and a few as much as twenty-five years ago. They all worshipped your statue and the images of the gods, and cursed Christ.
They affirmed, however, the whole of their guilt, or their error, was, that they were in the habit of meeting on a certain fixed day before it was light, when they sang in alternate verses a hymn to Christ, as to a god, and bound themselves by a solemn oath, not to any wicked deeds, but never to commit any fraud, theft, or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to deliver it up; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble to partake of food -- but food of an ordinary and innocent kind. Even this practice, however, they had abandoned after the publication of my edict, by which, according to your orders, I had forbidden political associations. I judged it so much the more necessary to extract the real truth, with the assistance of torture, from two female slaves, who were styled deaconesses: but I could discover nothing more than depraved and excessive superstition.
I therefore adjourned the proceedings, and betook myself at once to your counsel. For the matter seemed to me well worth referring to you, especially considering the numbers endangered. Persons of all ranks and ages, and of both sexes are, and will be, involved in the prosecution. For this contagious superstition is not confined to the cities only, but has spread through the villages and rural districts; it seems possible, however, to check and cure it.
Cornelius Tacitus (55 - 120 AD) was considered a great historian of ancient Rome. His account, The Annals, is represented by a two-volume set (chapters 1-6, with one surviving manuscript; and chapters 11-16, known as Historiae, with 32 surviving manuscripts).
As background, on July 19, 64 AD, a fire started in Rome that burned for nine days, finally destroying nearly three-quarters of the city. According to Tacitus, rumors spread that the fire was planned by the wickedly unstable Emperor Nero himself. In response, Nero created a diversion by calling for the torture and execution of Christians.
Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired. Nero offered his gardens for the spectacle, and was exhibiting a show in the circus, while he mingled with the people in the dress of a charioteer or stood aloft on a car. Hence, even for criminals who deserved extreme and exemplary punishment, there arose a feeling of compassion; for it was not, as it seemed, for the public good, but to glut one man's cruelty, that they were being destroyed.
From Cornelius Tacitus, probably the leading Roman historian of the period, there's no doubt that Christians existed in 64 AD. In addition, they faced "hideous persecution'' for their belief in Christ, a true historical figure who was executed in Judea only 30 years early.
Lucian of Samosata was a 2nd century Greek philosopher. This preserved text is obviously satirical, but it's a extra-Biblical source:
The Christians, you know, worship a man to this day -- the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites, and was crucified on that account... You see, these misguided creatures started with the general conviction that they are immortal for all time, which explains the contempt of death and voluntary self-devotion which are so common among them; and then it was impressed them by their original lawgiver that they are all brothers, from the moment that they are converted, and deny the gods of Greece, and worship the crucified sage, and live after his laws. All this they take quite on faith, with the result that they despise all worldly goods alike, regarding them merely as common property.
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