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Bnjmn
Nov 5th 2013, 07:22 PM
In various discussions with many non believer friends, the topic of first hand accounts of the life of Christ that are not in the bible always comes up. They continue to ask for evidence of writings about his life and death that are not written in The Bible and I always seems to come up short.

Do any of you know of any first hand, non Bible accounts of Christ, ones that are not based on the writings of those used in The Bible?

With as miraculous as Christ was, there had to of been many other written accounts of his life, and some of the miracles her performed or of his death and reappearance after his crucifixion that were not written by those who helped write The Bible.

jayne
Nov 5th 2013, 08:58 PM
Your friends aren't likely to come to a state of belief even with concrete and valid extra-Biblical writings. So after reading the following links and even providing them with the information in it, don't expect them to accept any of it as "good enough".

Advise them to read "The Case for the Real Jesus" by Lee Strobel. He has a degree in journalism and law and was a journalist. He is a former atheist who - by researching facts for himself - came to a professing belief in Christ.

Here's a reputable site with historical references: http://www.gotquestions.org/did-Jesus-exist.html

Here's three extra-Biblical accounts: CLICK HERE (http://www.probe.org/site/c.fdKEIMNsEoG/b.4223639/k.567/Ancient_Evidence_for_Jesus_from_NonChristian_Sourc es.htm)


(http://www.gotquestions.org/did-Jesus-exist.html)

Aijalon
Nov 5th 2013, 09:06 PM
Most of his teachings were to illiterate and oppressed people in Galilee and to the Pharisees that hated him. It is not suprising that priesthood of Jerusalem did not record anything about him, preferring to forget all about him. But the people who first spread the word about him were those who were first hand witnesses of him, and they spoke to others of what they saw. The Gospel writers confirmed these things, and to have a lot more things written about him would ultimately cause problems because many things passed by word of mouth were no doubt altered over time. Having just a few writings all based on first hand accounts by close followers is actually very good for keeping the story of Jesus Christ pure.

The historian Josephus who was a Jew contracted by the Romans, told of the 1st century Christians and Jews in a light which prooves that Jesus did exist and had a following, but he makes no detailed accounts of Jesus' life because his goal was to record the political events between the Jews (who hated Christ) and Romans.

exitludos
Nov 5th 2013, 09:25 PM
In various discussions with many non believer friends, the topic of first hand accounts of the life of Christ that are not in the bible always comes up. They continue to ask for evidence of writings about his life and death that are not written in The Bible and I always seems to come up short.
Only one source was written by an Israelite who (when he was a child) was a contemporary of Jesus: Josephus.

He mentions Jesus twice:


And now Caesar, upon hearing the death of Festus, sent Albinus into Judea, as procurator. But the king deprived Joseph of the high priesthood, and bestowed the succession to that dignity on the son of Ananus, who was also himself called Ananus... 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; and when he had formed an accusation against them as breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned.

and

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 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.


The second of those has been so badly corrupted by Christians from a later time, that it is very difficult to tell what Josephus originally wrote.

ewq1938
Nov 6th 2013, 04:05 AM
The letter from Pontius Pilate to Tiberius Caesar

This is a reprinting of a letter from Pontius Pilate to Tiberius Caesar describing the physical appearance of Jesus. Copies are in the Congressional Library in Washington, D.C.

TO TIBERIUS CAESAR:

A young man appeared in Galilee preaching with humble unction, a new law in the Name of the God that had sent Him. At first I was apprehensive that His design was to stir up the people against the Romans, but my fears were soon dispelled. Jesus of Nazareth spoke rather as a friend of the Romans than of the Jews. One day I observed in the midst of a group of people a young man who was leaning against a tree, calmly addressing the multitude. I was told it was Jesus. This I could easily have suspected so great was the difference between Him and those who were listening to Him. His golden colored hair and beard gave to his appearance a celestial aspect. He appeared to be about 30 years of age. Never have I seen a sweeter or more serene countenance. What a contrast between Him and His bearers with their black beards and tawny complexions! Unwilling to interrupt Him by my presence, I continued my walk but signified to my secretary to join the group and listen. Later, my secretary reported that never had he seen in the works of all the philosophers anything that compared to the teachings of Jesus. He told me that Jesus was neither seditious nor rebellious, so we extended to Him our protection. He was at liberty to act, to speak, to assemble and to address the people. This unlimited freedom provoked the Jews -- not the poor but the rich and powerful.

Later, I wrote to Jesus requesting an interview with Him at the Praetorium. He came. When the Nazarene made His appearance I was having my morning walk and as I faced Him my feet seemed fastened with an iron hand to the marble pavement and I trembled in every limb as a guilty culprit, though he was calm. For some time I stood admiring this extraordinary Man. There was nothing in Him that was repelling, nor in His character, yet I felt awed in His presence. I told Him that there was a magnetic simplicity about Him and His personality that elevated Him far above the philosophers and teachers of His day.

Now, Noble Sovereign, these are the facts concerning Jesus of Nazareth and I have taken the time to write you in detail concerning these matters. I say that such a man who could convert water into wine, change death into life, disease into health; calm the stormy seas, is not guilty of any criminal offense and as others have said, we must agree -- truly this is the Son of God.

Your most obedient servant,
Pontius Pilate


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



"The Archko Volume"

Another description of Jesus is found in "The Archko Volume" which contains official court documents from the days of Jesus. This information substantiates that He came from racial lines which had blue eyes and golden hair. In a chapter entitled "Gamaliel's Interview" it states concerning Jesus (Yeshua) appearance:

"I asked him to describe this person to me, so that I might know him if I should meet him. He said: 'If you ever meet him [Yeshua] you will know him. While he is nothing but a man, there is something about him that distinguishes him from every other man. He is the picture of his mother, only he has not her smooth, round face. His hair is a little more golden than hers, though it is as much from sunburn as anything else. He is tall, and his shoulders are a little drooped; his visage is thin and of a swarthy complexion, though this is from exposure. His eyes are large and a soft blue, and rather dull and heavy....' This Jew [Nazarite] is convinced that he is the Messiah of the world. ...this was the same person that was born of the virgin in Bethlehem some twenty-six years before..."

- The Archko Volume, translated by Drs. McIntosh and Twyman of the Antiquarian Lodge, Genoa, Italy, from manuscripts in Constantinople and the records of the Senatorial Docket taken from the Vatican of Rome (1896) 92-93







Interestingly, the Arabic version of Josephus' writing says this:

At this time here was a good man named Jesus, and his conduct was good, and he was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and the other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon their loyalty to him. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion, and that he was alive. Accordingly they believed that he was the Messiah, concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders.




Agape Bible Study

Josephus ben Mattathias (also known as Flavius Josephus): 37-100AD, Jewish priest, general and historian. He wrote two great works of Jewish history: The Jewish War, written in the early 70's and Jewish Antiquities, which was finished about AD94. In his work, Jewish Antiquities, there is a passage that has created heated debate among scholars for many decades: "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 men 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; 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, 33

Divine Evidence
"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

What this passage reveals and how it confirms the Biblical account:

Jesus did exist
Jesus was the founder of Christianity
Jesus was worshiped by His followers
Jesus suffered death by crucifixion

exitludos
Nov 6th 2013, 06:14 AM
The alleged letter from Pilate to Tiberius is a clear forgery, probably dating to the third or fourth century: it was written in Greek (not Latin, as would be the case of a Roman prefect addressing a Roman emperor); the overt courtesy of Pilate is completely at odds with the historical figure as described in earlier sources actual first century sources (Pilate was violent, stubborn, and spiteful, and he hates Jews, and this behavior continued even until Tiberius' death); all of the actions assigned to Jesus are explicitly mentioned in the fourfold canonical Gospels (this is too convenient); and it even comes with subtle anti-Semitism (dissociating Jesus from his fellow Jews, especially in physical appearance).

Also, the Library of Congress long ago stated that no such letter is found in its collection. Someone lied, apparently thinking the text's authenticity would be proved if they told everyone it was kept in the Library of Congress (improperly named as the 'Congressional Library').



The Archko Volume was a forgery from the nineteenth century, with sections plagiarizing the short story Revue de Paris, as well as the famous novel Ben-Hur. The author of the Archko Volume admitted to his plagiarism in court, and promised to remove his book from publication (which he ultimately failed to follow through with). The book is of no historical value on the issue of whether Jesus existed, or who he was or what he did.



The Passing of Peregrinus was written over 130 years after Jesus' crucifixion. Since it was not written contemporaneously to Jesus, it has no value in confirming the historical fact of Jesus' life, death, or resurrection... it only confirms that a group of people (Christians) believed as much in the middle of the second century.