DID THE MAN JESUS EXIST?


Majority (9) of the listed personalities who made this documentations are non-professors and/or critics of the Christian faith but were only trying to be objective with the documentation of a historical fact when they professed that the man Jesus really did once walked the earth, thereby proving that the man called jesus is not a fictional character but a real and historical figure who really existed. Though many of these historians would probably rather not speak about this fact but conceal it, they were however held under compulsion to present a critical viewpoint of history as a professional and ethical historian ought to do.


  • 1.

    The Babylonian Talmud

    This is an ancient record of Jewish history, law and rabbinic teachings compiled throughout the centuries. It can be said to be the bible of the Jews. Though it doesn’t accept the divinity of Jesus, it confirms the fact that Jesus was hanged (crucified) on the eve of Passover.

    “On the eve of Passover, Yeshu (Jesus) [some text: Yeshu/Jesus the Nazarene] was hanged (crucified).forty days before the execution, a herald went forth and cried, he is going forth to be stoned because he has practiced sorcery and enticed Israel to apostasy, anyone who can say anything in his favor, let him come forward and plead on his behalf, but since nothing was brought forward in his favor, he was hanged on the eve of Passover”.
    Sanhedrin 43a

    CONCLUSION
    The Jews confirm that the man Jesus existed and they hanged (crucified) him on the eve of Passover.


  • 2.

    Flavius Josephus (37-100AD)

    He was a first century Pharisee and historian of both priestly and royal ancestry who provided important insight to first century Judaism. He wrote; “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 receive 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 man among 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”.
    Antiquities XVIII, 3:2


    Josephus also wrote about john the Baptist. “And now, some of the Jews thought that the destruction of Herod’s army came from God and that very justly as a punishment for what he did against john that was called the Baptist. For herod slew him, who was a good man and commanded the jews to execute virtue both as to righteousness towards one another and piety towards God and so to come to baptism for that the washing (with water) will be acceptable to him if they made use of it, not in order to putting away (or the remission) of some sin but for the purification of the body supposing still that the soul was thoroughly purified beforehand by righteousness”.
    Book 18:5 (chapter and paragraph 2)


    Josephus also mentions James, the brother of Jesus. ”Festus was now dead and Albinus was but upon the road so he assembled the Sanhedrin of judges and brought before them the brother of Jesus who was called Christ whose name was James and some others (or some of his companions) and when he had formed an accusation against the breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned, but as for those who seemed the most equitable of the citizens and such as were the most uneasy at the breach of the laws, they disliked what was done”.
    Antiquities, book 20, chapter 9, paragraph 1


    Josephus also mentions Ananias, the high priest who was mentioned in [Act 23:2]. ”now as soon as Albinus was come to the city of Jerusalem, he used all his endeavors and care that the country might be kept in peace and this by destroying many of the sicarii, but as for the high priest Ananias, he increased in glory every day and this to a great degree and had obtained the favor and esteem of the citizens in a signal manner for he was a great hoarder up of money”.

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, he wasn’t thought of as an ordinary man by the jews but as the Christ, he was a wise teacher of truth and performed miracles, he converted both Jews and Gentiles, the Pharisees condemned him to death on the cross as executed by Pontius Pilate, he resurrected on the third day and appeared to his disciples, John the Baptist (who baptized Jesus) who was slain by Herod also existed, Jesus had a brother James who was falsely accused and killed, Ananias the high priest (in the time of Jesus’ death) existed.


  • 3.

    Thallus (52AD)

    His works exist only in fragments but he wrote in the third book of his history about the darkness that occurred at midday at Christ’s crucifixion, dismissing it as a natural occurrence (a solar eclipse) and another historian of the second century, phlegon of tralles also mentioned the darkness which enveloped the whole world and tries to dismiss it too as a solar eclipse. But Africanus argues that it could never have been a solar eclipse because the Jews celebrate their Passover on the 14th day of the month Nissan, according to the full moon and Jesus was crucified on the day before the Passover. A solar eclipse cannot physically occur during a full moon due to the alignment of the planets.
    Chronography XVIII, 47

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, he was crucified with a strange supernatural worldwide darkening of the sky occurring.


  • 4.

    Cornelius Tacitus (55-120AD)

    He was a first and second century historian considered one of the greatest historians of ancient Rome. He wrote; “Christus, the founder of the [Christian] name was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius, but the pernicious superstition, repressed for a time broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief originated, but through the city of Rome also.
    Annals XV, 44

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus did exist, he was the founder of Christianity, he was put to death by Pilate, Christianity originated in Judea (with Jesus) and later spread to Rome (through the apostles and evangelists)


  • 5.

    Pliny the younger (63-113AD)

    He was a man who tortured and executed Christians who refused to deny Christ, he wrote addressing his concerns to emperor Trojan, “I asked them directly if they were Christians, those who persisted ,I ordered away... those who denied they were or ever had been Christians... worshipped both your image and the image of the gods and cursed Christ. They used to gather on a stated day before dawn and sing to Christ as if he were a god... all the more; I believed it necessary to find out what was the truth from two servant maids which were called deaconesses, by means of torture. Nothing more did I find than a disgusting, fanatical superstition. Therefore I stopped the examination and hastened to consult you... on account of the number of people endangered. For many of all ages, all classes and both sexes already are brought into danger”. Pliny’s letter to emperor Trojan.
    Sanhedrin 43a

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, the Christians used a day to worship in his name and some Christians were willing to die for their faith and belief in him.


  • 6.

    Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus (69-130AD)

    He was a prominent Roman historian who recorded the lives of Roman Caesars and the historical events surrounding their reigns. He wrote; “as the Jews were making constant disturbances at the instigation of chrestus (Jesus Christ using the term as a title and not a name) [Claudius] expelled them from Rome”.
    Life of Claudius 25.4

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, the Jewish Christians were expelled from Rome (mentioned in [Act 18:2]) because of him.


  • 7.

    Mara.bar-serapion (post 70AD)

    Mara of Syria passed this letter from prison to his son. He wrote; “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 the Jews gained from executing their wise king; it was just after 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 teachings 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 teachings which he had given”.
    A letter of Mara, son of serapion

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, Mara doesn’t specifically acknowledge Jesus as the son of God but acknowledges him as the king of the Jews, Jesus was killed by his people (the Jews), and the Jews were driven out of their land to dispersion sometime after the death of Jesus. Jesus left behind teachings (the teachings of the New Testament)


  • 8.

    Clement of Rome (98AD)

    He was a bishop of Rome who later became known as the fourth pope martyred in approximately 98AD. A first century apostolic author which gave credence to his firsthand account of early Christianity, he confirms some of the basic tenets of Christianity and also the ministry of the disciples.
    Corinthians 42

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed


  • 9.

    Ignatius of Antioch (100AD)

    He was a bishop of Antioch arrested by the Romans and executed as a martyr in the arena; he gave account of the existence of the works of Jesus, his death and resurrection, his virgin birth, his killing under Pontius Pilate, his baptism by John, him being the son of God but of the race of David according to the flesh.
    Trallians, smyrneans1, magnesiansVI

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed


  • 10.

    Justin Martyr (100-165AD)

    He was probably the most well-known Christian apologist, he was an educated pagan philosopher who converted to Christianity around 130AD, his profession of Christianity throughout Asia Minor and Rome led to his death via scourging and beheading in 165AD. Justin explains that he made his decision to convert only after careful consideration and research.
    First apology, 34, 46, 50, Dialogue with trypho, 77, 97,107-108

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed


  • 11.

    Hegesippus (110-180AD)

    He converted to Christianity from Judaism after extensively researching the gospel stories for himself. Instead of accepting the gospel story at the word of others, he travelled extensively throughout Rome and Corinth in an effort to collect evidence of the early Christian claims; he provided important testimonies that the stories passed around were not watered-down, embellished or fabricated.
    The history of the church

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed


  • 12.

    Lucian of Samosata (120-180AD)

    He was a second century Greek satirist and rhetorician who scornfully describe his views of early Christianity. He wrote; “the Christians you know worship a man to this day, the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites and was crucified on that account... it was impressed on them by their original lawgiver that they are all brothers from the moment they are converted and deny the gods of Greece and worship the crucified sage and live after his laws”.
    The death of peregrinus 11-13

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, he was the founder of Christianity, was reverenced by his followers, and suffered death by crucifixion.


  • 13.

    Aristides the Athenian (126AD)

    Aristides along with Quadralus presented an apology to Emperor Hadrian during his stay in Athens in 126AD, he called Jesus the son of God who performed good deeds and countless miracles and was sentenced to death by the cross. The Christians trace their origin from Jesus, Jesus born of a virgin for the salvation of men, resurrected after three days of death and ascended into heaven, had 12 apostles spread his teachings to the whole world.
    Apology XIV-XV.
    Also read eusebius IV III for Quadralus’ story of the people Jesus healed and resurrected who were still living in his time.

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed


  • 14.

    Celsius (178AD)

    He was a second century Roman author and avid opponent of Christianity who went to great length to disprove the divinity of Jesus but yet never denied his existence. He wrote that Jesus acquired his magical powers from Egypt which he used to perform miracles, that the resurrection itself was nothing more than a trick and an illusion. He wrote that Jesus’s mother committed adultery with a roman soldier named Panthera while she was with Joseph and Joseph sent her out so there was nothing like the virgin birth. He wrote that Jesus had associates and disciples who believed he was the savior and son of the greatest God who denied him in his suffering and death. He wrote questioning why couldn’t Jesus save himself if he was really of divinity even though he could save others. He also confirmed that John baptized Jesus and asserted that prophet John was the only one who prophesied about Jesus’ coming and not the Old Testament. Celsius contradicts himself yet again when he later states that Jesus was probably never even crucified but instead had an impostor die in his place.

    CONCLUSION
    The man Jesus existed, he was baptized by john, john was a prophet that announced his coming, he had disciples who believed that he was the son of God, he performed miracles and could save people, and there was a crucifixion.


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