Failed Prophecy: Isaiah 53

Isaiah 53 is the other chapter that apologists point to as predicting the death of Jesus, but, like the claims for Psalm 22, we’ll see that this also falls flat.

First, give the apologists their turn. They’ll point to several phrases in Isaiah 53 (and the last few verses of the preceding chapter) that parallel the crucifixion.

Verse 52:14: “there were many who were appalled at him; his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any human being.” Some say that this refers to the beatings Jesus received, though his ugly appearance is never mentioned in the New Testament.

Verse 53:3: “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.” Jesus should have been recognized as the Messiah, but the gospels tell us that his own people rejected him.

On the other hand, “he was despised” doesn’t sound like the charismatic rabbi who preached to thousands of attentive listeners and had a triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. And “a man of suffering … familiar with pain” might’ve been the life of an ascetic like John the Baptist, but this doesn’t describe Jesus.

Verse 53:7: “he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent.” The synoptic gospels agree that Jesus was silent before his accusers (though John 18:34–19:11 doesn’t).

Verse 53:8: in response to the trial and sentencing of Jesus, “who of his generation protested?” Jesus was on his own, and none of his disciples tried to intervene.

Verse 53:9: “He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death.” This is often interpreted to mean that Jesus ought to have been buried with criminals but was actually buried with the rich. This ties in with the burial of Jesus in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea.

Finally, from 53:5 to the end of the chapter, almost every verse gives some version of the idea of the suffering servant taking on the burdens of his people—“he was pierced for our transgressions … by his wounds we are healed” (:5), “for the transgression of my people he was punished” (:8), “he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors” (:12), and so on.

Taken as this collection of verse fragments, the case looks intriguing, but taken as a whole—that is, letting the chapter speak for itself—the story falls apart.

First, let’s look at some of the verses discarded by the apologists.

Verse 52:15: “so will many nations be amazed at him and kings will shut their mouths because of him.

The nations will be amazed and the kings speechless? Nope, not only was Jesus not internationally famous during his lifetime, history records nothing of his life outside the gospels. True, we have evidence of his followers from historians such as Josephus, Tacitus, and Suetonius, but it is curious that we have nothing about the works of Jesus himself from prolific contemporary authors such as Philo of Alexandria, Seneca, and Pliny the Elder. Apparently he wasn’t as famous as imagined prophecy would have him be.

Verse 53:10: “he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.” This is a nice thought—Jesus endures great trials but then, like Job, he is rewarded with children, prosperity, and long life. As Proverbs says, “Grandchildren are the crown of old men.”

Too bad this isn’t how the gospel story plays out.

Verse 53:11: “my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.” Let’s revisit this suffering servant thing. Jesus, a person of the Trinity and equal to God the Father, is now God’s servant?

Note that “messiah” simply means “anointed one” and that the Old Testament is fairly liberal with the title messiah. Kings and high priests were anointed as messiahs. Heck, Cyrus the Great of Persia was even a messiah (see Isaiah 45:1). But surely no Christian can accept the logic, “Well, David was a messiah, and he was a servant of God; why not Jesus as well?” Jesus was certainly not in the same category as David.

And here’s the big one: “Therefore I will give him a portion among the great [or many] and he will divide the spoils with the strong [or numerous]” (verse 53:12). Like a warrior who gets a share of the spoils of the battle, the servant will be richly rewarded. This servant is just one among many who gets a portion.

Wait a minute—Jesus has peers? He’s one among equals, just “one of the great”? What kind of nonsense is this? Again, this bears no resemblance to the Jesus of the gospels.

This all makes more sense if the “he” of this chapter is seen as Israel, not Jesus.

And, as with our analysis of Psalm 22, the point of any crucifixion story would be the resurrection, which is not present in this chapter. Only with the naïve confidence of a student of Nostradamus could this baggy sack of a “prophecy” be imagined to be a trim fit.

Religion is the diaper of humanity’s childhood;
it’s OK to grow out of it
— PZ Myers

Photo credit: Jens Cramer

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  • Maxximiliann

    Small problem. Jesus is not (and never has been) Almighty God Jehovah, The Father: http://bit.ly/13Y8mua

    • Where’s the problem?

      • Joseph’s logic is the problem.

      • Maxximiliann

        You forgot that you claimed “Verse 53:11: “my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.” Let’s revisit this suffering servant thing. Jesus, a person of the Trinity and equal to God the Father, is now God’s servant?”

  • utwwhears

    This is such a laughable commentary and easily discernible as someone who has no familiarity with the scriptures, prophecy or what it predicted. I am not stating this out of anger or discontentment, but rather coming from a place where you just lack complete insight and understanding. The right to dispute and research is fine and something the bible tells us to do, check for yourself. But, it is another thing to be disingenuous with the hope of putting misinformation into the public eye for someone who may be grasping for a reason to believe this stuff and find hope that somehow the scriptures and rationale you have quoted are somehow false. I have to give you the benefit of the doubt and hope that you are not very well researched and hopeful that you are not just an outright liar with an agenda and an attempt to misinform. When I come across things like this I just laugh. I am not a person spewing non-sense based on things that have been told to me and just believe blindly. I am actually well researched and very informed. I would ask anyone reading this information to research for themselves and see if the scriptures hold weight. Don’t even research from a religious perspective, but as a person searching for an honest assessment. Comical.

    • Actually, what’s comical is your long discussion that makes clear that you disagree … but with zero evidence to show me how your view is correct.

      My suggestion: try again, but this time keep your smugness to yourself. Clearly show me an erroneous statement that I make, and then correct it. Y’know, give the evidence for your position.

    • wtfwjtd

      “I am not a person spewing non-sense based on things that have been told to me and just believe blindly. I am actually well researched and very informed.”

      …right, so you just spewed a bunch of nonsense, and then inform us that you *don’t* spew nonsense, apparently about a bunch of stuff that you believe blindly, without doing any research or being informed. ‘Cause if you really had something informative and well-researched to say about Isaiah 53 or Bob’s commentary, I assume you would have said it. Is that about right?

  • veritatis_splendor

    //Verse 53:3: “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.” Jesus should have been recognized as the Messiah, but the gospels tell us that his own people rejected him.

    On the other hand, “he was despised” doesn’t sound like the charismatic rabbi who preached to thousands of attentive listeners and had a triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. And “a man of suffering … familiar with pain” might’ve been the life of an ascetic like John the Baptist, but this doesn’t describe Jesus.//

    First, the verse doesn’t exclude that it alluded to the Passion of Christ, not necessarily to the entire public life of Jesus. Even so, he also lived in poverty and suffering and even at the beginning of his ministry, those from his own hometown rejected him.

    Also, why did you limit the fulfillment of the prophecy to Jesus earthly life? After he ascended, the Church grew and emperors and kings eventually submitted to his name, this despite the initial rabid persecutions against early Church (which should be evidence enough that the Christian religion is the real deal)

    Your rebuttal isn’t a rebuttal at all. What you’re doing is that you’re misinterpreting the verses so that it won’t fit what happened.

    • Show me an interpretation of the entire set of verses that is better than the one I have above.

      • veritatis_splendor

        I read the entire Isaiah 53 and I couldn’t see a verse that absolutely cannot apply to Jesus.

        How in the world can Jesus not serve and do the will of God the Father? Which logic on earth prohibits this?

        In Philippians 2:5-11:

        “Have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
        6 who, existing in the form of God, counted not the being on an equality with God a thing to be grasped,
        7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men;
        8 and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, becoming obedient even unto death, yea, the death of the cross.
        9 Wherefore also God highly exalted him, and gave unto him the name which is above every name;
        10 that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things on earth and things under the earth,
        11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

        Christ died in the Gospel, but was resurrected. So God ultimately “prolonged his days,” in fact until forever. In Galatians 3:26, Christians were told “For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” The “offspring” in Isaiah may not be referring to children through the flesh (ie, biological children), but spiritual children of God through baptism. In heaven, Christ has witnessed how his offspring continued for generations onto the present day.

        Christianity holds that Jesus will be the King of the New Heavens and the New Earth, and his kingdom will last forever. He will share this kingdom with those who are saved through him. This explains Isaiah 53:12

        Romans 8:17 “Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”

        • I read the entire Isaiah 53 and I couldn’t see a verse that absolutely cannot apply to Jesus.

          That’s nice. Now reread it and show that every verse can be applied to nothing else but Jesus.

          Let’s pretend that we’re honest seekers of the truth who will follow the evidence where it leads. If God were going to put in the passion + resurrection story, it would be clear. This isn’t.

          If something this obtuse were given to you as “fulfilled prophecy” from another religion, you think you’d buy it?

    • Pofarmer

      “despite the initial rabid persecutions against early Church (which
      should be evidence enough that the Christian religion is the real deal)”

      Why? Even if Candida Moss isn’t right, that Christian Persecution was highly overstated, why would someone attempting to squelch a competing belief system indicate that it is genuine?

  • veritatis_splendor

    What was ignored: that THESE so-called “novelists” died attesting that what they witnessed were true.

    Easy to accuse them of lying. But can you suffer and die for a blatant lie?

    • ‘Cause it didn’t happen. The “Who would die for a lie?” argument falls flat.

      • veritatis_splendor

        What you wrote there was just that SOME other sources contradict SOME details of how SOME of the apostles died. In no way will the conclusion from this premise be “it didn’t happen.”

        • I argue that there is insufficient reason to believe the “who would die for a lie?” argument.

        • Pofarmer

          People die for false beliefs all the time. How many are willing to die for Islam? How many are willing to suffer because of the Caste system in Hinduism? How many were willing to die for Hitler, or Stalin? Being willing to die for something doesn’t in any way indicate that that something is true.

  • eleventh hour hero

    failed prophecy? i call this failed propaganda.

    utwwhears succinctly summarises my review of this article

    “This is such a laughable commentary and easily discernible as someone who has no familiarity with the scriptures, prophecy or what it predicted”

    To me bobby you are just another one of those modern age free thinking atheists that wish for a godless world in which you are servant to nobody but yourself. A common characteristic amongst atheists – they despise following a religion and are disgusted by being superseded in knowledge and truth known to even the most simple people around the world. It’s ok bob, we understand you are an honest seeker of the truth, who will follow the evidence where it leads, and thats a good thing. But when evidence presents itself to you, you absolutely refuse to accept it. Then you all be hypocritical and try and bash creationists for refusing “scientific evidence” for evolution. It’s clear to me that you thrive on discrediting anything which favours the reality of Jesus Christ and the truth in Christianity to get by day by day. I can tell you now, this will be an infinite process for you until the day you cease spinning your own biased and arrogant interpretations of holy scripture to fit your false world view and humanist perspective. I repeat, it will be a journey that has no end for you until you relax your guard and humble yourself to accept a universal truth. Its ok bobby, there is no shame in admitting an incorrect understanding in the face of everyday, ordinary people who have known the truth their entire life. I understand atheists pride themselves on claiming to have a superior understanding and knowledge of the world and to submit to religion and christianity in particular, is personally a very tough thing to do. Some find it impossible IRRESPECTIVE of the mountain of evidence which points in favour of the christian religion. But you and I both know many atheists in the past have made the conversion and are living a life that is immeasurably more fulfilling and awake then they had before. So here it is, if you are scraping the bottom of the pit to find more reason to reject religion and christianity and you have to resort to twisting scripture to give your side some credence, then I really suggest perhaps taking a couple of weeks or so to drop your guard and sword, drop the pride, drop the arrogance, destroy the pedestal, be humble and get to know more christians, ordinary everyday christians, and get to know their story and come to their understanding as to why they see truth in what is written. Ask them about their lives ask them about their hopes and just get to know them. Oh and please, no trying to push a ludicrous atheist agenda onto them while you are at it, remember we are being humble and dropping our pride for this.

    btw what’s with all the irrelevant tags to this article?
    same sex marriage, abortion, frank turek, santa claus ?!?! what the fuck?

    • Pofarmer

      Might I suggest coming to the current thread n fallacious thinking?

    • Your name is apt. Good thing you swooped in at the 11th hour to set things straight.

      My response to utwwhears was that it was much wind with zero content. He didn’t like the post—that’s all he conveyed. My post was full of errors? I invited him to actually, y’know, show them to us. Crickets.

      And you’re worse. He at least spent the time to compose drivel. You can only copy someone else’s.

      If you’d actually like to point to specific errors, do so. Or shut up.

  • dfdfdfdfd

    *test*

  • me

    “God is a loving God and He is also a just God”. Then someone please tell me why in the book of Exodus and Joshwa does he order his chosen people to kill evey living thing in the promised land. They killed every living thing-old men woman innocent childern-even all the animals. Now beheading, killing and extermination of cultures was a common theme at the time and appears in historical tex, but I got a real problem reconsiling the fact that people use the bible( which is full of violance) as a guide to their lives. A book that tells u to believe in myths, magic, and fantasy ( man who lives in the belly of a fish for 3 days, magician that flies over Rome , trees that turn into monsters, demons that come out of people and jump into sheep etc.) Now either history is wrong–and I bellieve its not–or God is an eveil vicious creature in that the bible is certainly full of enough violence to give rise to the question–what kind of God–if there is one-would permit and or order such a thing.

  • thewordsservant

    the whole “JESUS” story is not over

    • adam

      Yes, it was over almost 2000 years ago, when Jesus FAILED his own prophesy to ‘this generation’ and to ‘those standing here’

      • Pofarmer

        Done, Kaput, failed, history, finito. It is, most certianly, over.

        • adam

          What do they say?

          Ye shall know them by their fruits……

  • Jerry

    LOL. Jesus is one of the most influential persons in history. All of this is fulfilled.

    • Huh? You think Is. 53 says that?

      You’ll have to show me the verse.

    • adam

      You write influential as if it is a good thing.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zt5gLf455Q8

      • Aaron Siering

        The first problem with this hypothetical is that knowledge of the Holocaust would never have become widespread. The Nazis took great pains to keep this secret even from their own citizens, and even the towns where it was happening there was the type of familial cognitive dissonance that has always allowed mankind to evil things to one another. There is no hypothetical where anybody is okay with the Holocaust. If the Nazis had won the facts of the Holocaust would have been suppressed.

        The second problem is that Israelis it seems never supported a holocaust of their own. This is simply a type of rhetorical hyperbole used in that language in that culture. For even after there was supposedly a genocide carried out against the the Canaanites a few chapters later we read without irony Canaanites living among the Israelites.

        The third problem is the argument assumes that Judeo-Christianity is the reason for any of the immorality in the world as opposed to a counter-balance that did to the degree that it was actually internalized help retard it. A distinction needs to be made between the claims of Judeo-Christianity and those who persons and cultures who profess to be Christians but act in a way that is contrary to claims.

        So there is a pattern here both with this video and that of the original blog, both need to rely on anachronistic readings of the Bible to support their argument.

        • adam

          “The first problem with this hypothetical is that knowledge of the Holocaust would never have become widespread.”

          Doesnt matter to those who did it or those who directed it from what they BELIEVED ‘god’ wanted them to do.

          ” If the Nazis had won the facts of the Holocaust would have been suppressed.”
          Doesnt matter to those who did it or those who directed from what they BELIEVED ‘god’ wanted them to do.

          “The second problem is that Israelis it seems never supported a holocaust of their own.”

          Matters not.
          Their ‘god’ did, thats the point.

          “The third problem is the argument assumes that Judeo-Christianity is the
          reason for any of the immorality in the world as opposed to a
          counter-balance that did to the degree that it was actually internalized
          help retard it.”

          LOL

          A counter balance to WHAT?

          The Romans killing a character called Jesus in a book?

          “A distinction needs to be made between the claims of Judeo-Christianity
          and those who persons and cultures who profess to be Christians but act
          in a way that is contrary to claims.”

          Christianity?

          Morality?

          It is really under biblical ‘morality’ ANYTHING goes except for blasphemy of the holy ghost.

          Yes, you can genocide and be forgiven.
          Yes, you can murder, rape and be forgiven.

          You can genocide every single individual in any group except lets say a baby and its mother, you can beat that baby to death, rape its lifeless body, then carve that baby up and eat it, cut off that mothers head and
          shit that baby down her throat…..

          And STILL be forgiven.

          So the biblical morality is the REAL case where anything goes…
          .
          .
          .
          Again except for blasphemy of the holey ghost,

          THAT is so horrible, that it is UNFORGIVABLE.

        • Aaron Siering

          Yea, I am not interested in anything you have to say. You have demonstrated that in your prejudiced to be rabidly irrational. There is no reasonable argument you’d be willing to accept and no rational discourse to which you can be engaged. What I said stands for any reasonable third party to consider.

        • adam

          “Yea, I am not interested in anything you have to say.”

          Of course not you have demonstrated in your prejudiced to be rabidly irrational and afraid of truth.

          “There is no reasonable argument you’d be willing to accept and no rational discourse to which you can be engaged.”

          Of course there is – the TRUTH.

          Which you are rabidly opposing by your prejudice.

          ” What I said stands for any reasonable third party to consider.”

          Yep, your shite stands as shite.

        • Greg G.

          Video is restricted on the network I am on so I haven’t seen the video so I don’t think I am following your argument. I’m barging in anyway.

          The second problem is that Israelis it seems never supported a holocaust of their own. This is simply a type of rhetorical hyperbole used in that language in that culture. For even after there was supposedly a genocide carried out against the the Canaanites a few chapters later we read without irony Canaanites living among the Israelites.

          Archaeology does not support the genocide story. There was no abrupt change in culture during that time. There were sites that had pig bones and some that didn’t but that was the only difference they have found.

          I saw a video many years ago where Israeli students (I think it was done in Israel) were told the story of the Canaanites without identifying characteristics and were asked what they thought. The students thought it was a horrible thing. Then they were told that it was from the Bible and the Hebrews had done the killing. They all started to rationalize it.

        • This is simply a type of rhetorical hyperbole used in that language in that culture.

          So the Bible is unreliable then.

        • Aaron Siering

          It depends what you mean by unreliable. Is it unreliable as a scientific document? Absolutely, it is. The Bible expresses itself in the terms of what was the contemporaneous scientific worldview of the time, but what it expresses through that worldview are the profoundest human truths in all of literature. As for understanding what it means to assert well their are a couple ways to go about it, but for our purposes here we can say it is necessary to understand what it was suppose to mean within the culture that produced it doing our best to avoid anachronism.

          The other thing to keep in mind is the Bible is a book composed by the Catholic Church, and it was always meant to be understood in terms of the liturgy. It is subset of the tradition that was handed onto the Church through the Apostles. So I would assert that even the singular focus of the Bible representing itself as source of truth is as, I’ve commented elsewhere, to understand Christianity through puritanical filter.

          Anyway, I certainly believe the Bible to be totally reliable, but how its reliable is as a liturgical book. Which is to say that its something like a family history that is meaningful to my family as we meet together for communal meals. It is a reliable means for us to understand ourselves as a family better, and along these lines it is amusing that people who are not actually part of the family, if only because they don’t want to be, believe that its a book that has anything to say to them or that they believe that they are even in a position to understand anything about.

        • Is it unreliable as a scientific document? Absolutely, it is.

          Good, but you said it was unreliable as a historical document.

          what it expresses in through that worldview are the profoundest human truths in all of literature.

          That’s one opinion. It’s not mine.

          I certainly believe the Bible to be totally reliable, but how its reliable is a liturgical book.

          So what you mean is that it’s not at all reliable, except as a liturgical book.

  • David

    This is a horribly inaccurate that shows you clearly have no idea what you’re talking about. Have you even read the Gospels?

    • You’ve got to give me more than this. “This is stupid!” doesn’t help anyone. Give me specifics.

      • Jake

        Honestly, I was wondering the same thing. Here’s my take.

        “On the other hand, “he was despised” doesn’t sound like the charismatic rabbi who preached to thousands of attentive listeners and had a triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. And “a man of suffering … familiar with pain” might’ve been the life of an ascetic like John the Baptist, but this doesn’t describe Jesus.”

        The fact is… He was despised, and he was a man of sorrows. He was familiar with pain. All through the gospels, you will see Jesus’ demeanor is that his heart is poured out for the hurting and the suffering. You depict him as though his preaching was self-indulging, like he was living it up and soaking in glory. His life and ministry were driven by compassion, not self-glorification. You’ll see over and over he tells people not to speak about what he was doing (healings, miracles, etc.). He wasn’t after the glamorous life. In fact, he was vey close with John the Baptist. John the Baptist was beheaded, Jesus is told about it, and what happens next? There is a crowd of people that desperately need him, and he heals their sick and feeds them. Have you ever lost someone close to you? You know what that feels like? You want to be alone. You want to grieve. Yet he again poured out his life for others in a moment where he would have been perfectly justified in taking a minute for himself. Try to ague that this isn’t a man of sorrows. By the way, his “triumphant entry” happened on a donkey. That’s the modern-day equivalent of riding into town in a beat up, rusty Honda Accord. Not exactly a lavish entry.

        Despised is the perfect word for him as well. The religious leaders hated Jesus with a passion! Do you know why? Because he was a threat to everything they had built. The religious leaders of that time used their power to elevate themselves over the people. Jesus came in and showed humanity that God’s plan is for the common man as well as the well-off to experience God, love, and healing. He didn’t use his power as a means to belittle people around him, but to elevate and heal. For this reason, he was absolutely, 100% despised and rejected. They sneered at him. They tried to stone him. They tried to throw him off a cliff. Charismatic rabbi? They wanted him dead. Not just silent, dead. That verse completely and perfectly describes Jesus.

        • The fact is… He was despised, and he was a man of sorrows.

          Meh. Ask any Christian to summarize his life, and “he was despised” will be way down on the list.

          For something to be a prophecy, it had better fit like a glove. Isaiah 53 fits like a sack, I’m afraid.

          You’ll see over and over he tells people not to speak about what he was doing (healings, miracles, etc.).

          And yet Jesus uses miracles as evidence (John 10:37–8).

          Yet he again poured out his life for others in a moment where he would have been perfectly justified in taking a minute for himself. Try to ague that this isn’t a man of sorrows.

          Uh, he’s God. On the day that John the Baptist died, how many thousands of other people also died? Even if he cared just about the Jews like Yahweh, that’s a lot of people to worry about. And who cares if John died? Jesus would see him soon.

          And why marvel about the pressure on Jesus? He was perfect. A load that would be difficult for you or I would be trivial for him.

          By the way, his “triumphant entry” happened on a donkey. That’s the modern-day equivalent of riding into town in a beat up, rusty Honda Accord. Not exactly a lavish entry.

          Or so the story says. I wonder … do you suppose that Mark threw the donkey thing in to imagine that Jesus fulfilled a prophecy (Zech. 9:9)?

          Despised is the perfect word for him as well.

          By everyone? If not, then you see my point.

          The religious leaders hated Jesus with a passion! Do you know why?

          Yeah, because it’s a story. The different figures in the story are just puppets who move around as the author (writing 40 years after the events, whatever they were) dictates.

          he was absolutely, 100% despised and rejected

          “Many spread their coats in the road, and others spread leafy branches which they had cut from the fields. Those who went in front and those who followed were shouting: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord; Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David; Hosanna in the highest!”

          Doh!

        • Greg G.

          By the way, his “triumphant entry” happened on a donkey. That’s the modern-day equivalent of riding into town in a beat up, rusty Honda Accord. Not exactly a lavish entry.

          A king rode a warhorse when they went to battle. They rode a donkey to show they came in peace. In 1 Kings 1:32-34, Solomon rode a donkey to his coronation. Judges 5:10; Judges 10:4; Judges 12:14; and 2 Samuel 16:2 talk about royalty riding donkeys. Mark made up the story, basing it on Zechariah 9:9-10. Early Christianity thought Isaiah 53 was historical. Even Origen argued for it.

  • Charles

    Verse 53:3: “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.” Jesus should have been recognized as the Messiah, but the gospels tell us that his own people rejected him.

    Hi Bob, Can you provide clarification of your stance on this statement? Are you saying Jesus was not rejected by his own people?

    • Greg G.

      He addressed that in the very next paragraph:

      On the other hand, “he was despised” doesn’t sound like the charismatic rabbi who preached to thousands of attentive listeners and had a triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. And “a man of suffering … familiar with pain” might’ve been the life of an ascetic like John the Baptist, but this doesn’t describe Jesus.

      • Luke Holton

        The issue with his argument, is he was despised at the end. If you read in scripture his followers decreased over time as his people became more and more hostile too him. Do you really think a man with thousands and thousands of followers at the time could be so easily taken and killed?

        • Greg G.

          The gospels tell us there were thousands greeting him a week before his arrest. His arrest, in the Synoptic gospels but not in John, was after the Passover meal when most people would be enjoying the meal, relaxing afterward, or sleeping, and the gospels tell us he was nearly alone in Gethsemane.

          I think you are mixing the Synoptics story with the John version. they are two different stories. In John, Jesus begins the ministry with the Cleansing of the Temple and makes to other annual trips to Jerusalem. The ministry in the gospels are just a few months and the Cleansing of the Temple happens in the final week. Jesus turns off a lot of followers with his Bread of Life discourse in John but that never happens in the Synoptics.

          Mark tells us that the name “Bartimaeus” means “son of Timaeus”. Then he has Jesus pray “Abba, Father”, using Aramaic and Greek. That teaches his readers that Barabbas means “son of the father”, linking him and Jesus as in the scapegoat Atonement ritual of Leviticus 16:5-22, where one goat is killed for the sins of the people and the other is released into the wilderness. But the Atonement ritual is later in the year, not at Passover in the spring. John tried to fix that by having Jesus arrested, crucified, and dead on the day before Passover, when the Passover lambs are killed. However, that doesn’t work because the Passover is not a sin offering.

        • adam

          ” Do you really think a man with thousands and thousands of followers at the time could be so easily taken and killed?”

          If it makes the story more interesting, of course.

        • Luke Holton

          Israel being reborn, look it up for yourself. It was prophesied and happened. That is just one. If you try to deny it you are just kidding yourselves.

        • adam

          But biblical Israel has NOT been reborn, so you are LYING again.

          http://www.realjewnews.com/?p=65

        • Pofarmer

          You’re talking in less than a weeks time for Pete’s sake.

        • Luke Holton

          Where do you get that it was a weeks time? You after the sermon on the mount when he started teaching harder things he continually lost many that followed him. I am not sure where you can even claim it was a week.

        • Pofarmer

          Supposedly huge crowds thronged to see him enter Jerusalem. That was the beginning of passover week.

  • She was despised and rejected by womankind, a woman of suffering, and familiar with pain.”Meriam women kind ruined.

  • Aaron Siering

    Your argument is fallacious because it assumes a mistaken understanding of the literary genre of Prophecy. The one that Protestants invented in the modern age.

    Prophecy in the scriptures is the counterpoint to history and like their history the actual events are not as important as the theological meaning for those events in their present. Now if there may very well be some comment by the theology that the prophecy was meant illuminate (again in their present) and the future event that is then associated with it. However the way you go about trying to associate the two versions of the events, in a level of detail that would be alien to them, does great violence to the text, and is not a way anybody would have understood it before the modern age. It is certainly not something that would have made sense to either the people in Isaiah’s time or the people in Christ’s.

    In short then your argument relies on an anachronism, and this is why I assert that it is fallacious.

    So really your argument goes more toward demonstrating a contradiction underlying Protestant, or modernist Biblical exegesis, and to this end I would agree with you: if you are going to attempt to read the Bible in the way you’ve just demonstrated then major contradictions will emerge.

    • Are you saying that New Testament writers were wrong to apply pesher to the OT? I agree.

      your argument relies on an anachronism, and this is why I assert that it is fallacious.

      My argument? You do realize that I’m rejecting the clumsy finding of prophecy in the OT, right?

      • Aaron Siering

        Actually no I didn’t read you that way. I guess I took the heading “failed Prophecy” too much at face value.

  • Nudist

    A couple of questions: why would anyone record prophesy in the past tense? Secondly, is there any record anywhere of successful prophesy? So much of the Old Testament prophecy actually appears to be written at the same moment it’s fulfillment was written… it’s a lot easier to get it right that way.

    • Greg G.

      Retrodiction is far more accurate and specific than prediction.

    • No nudists here, sir or madam! This is a family site.

      But to your question, I’ve seen no successful prophecy. I’m amazed that Christians pursue this avenue when the “prophecies” they trot out are so weak that even they’d see it if they came from another religion.

      • Greg G.

        No nudists here, sir or madam! This is a family site.

        At least, the respondent doesn’t have a graphic avatar.

      • Nudist

        A month passed and somehow I missed your response… Anyway, I just wanted to say in regard to “No nudists here, sir or madam! This is a family site…” that nudist resorts and beaches welcome families! We believe lawmakers who imply human bodies are “indecent” are hypocrites in the extreme. “Victorian” modesty, and Puritan prudery should be as unwelcome to an enlightened citizenry as stoning for adultery.

        While reading Plato’s Republic, I discover this passage discussing the needs of society. As a preface, Socrates has begun by postulating that people associate and create societies because, as a rule, all people are different and have special interets and talents, and the success of their venture requires these individuals to contribute to society at large. First they need food producer / gatherers, as well as shelter builders, weavers and shoemakers, etc.

        Here’s the particular quote (Socrates speaking) I found interesting:

        “…we must press on with our inquiry. So let us first consider how our citizens, so equipped, will live. They will produce corn, wine, clothes, and shoes, and will build themselves houses. In the summer they will for the most part work unclothed and unshod, in the winter they will be clothed and shod suitably.”

        Ah, for the good old days. (This quote circa 421 BC)

        Even earlier, supposedly, read Isaiah 20:3 ““As my servant Isaiah has walked naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and a portent against Egypt and Cush,…”
        The world will be a better place when people are recognized for what they say and what they believe rather than for the clothes they (may or may not) wear.
        Here’s a thought… when it comes to seduction, isn’t it true that 99.999% of all seductions are instigated by people in clothes falling for other people in clothes… co-workers eyeballing each other, high school kids lusting after each other, patrons and waitresses, drinkers and bar maids, etc.?

        • Yes, I was kidding. In fact, when the Seattle Atheists has a booth at the local University of WA street fair, we’re often put in the same row as the local naturist group (I believe that’s what they called themselves—perhaps you can correct me). They’re nice people.

      • Luke Holton

        You are blind if you have never seen a successful prophecy and totally don’t understand the word then.
        “Then he said to me, ‘Son of man, these bones represent the people of Israel. They are saying, ‘We have become old, dry bones – all hope is gone.’ Now give them this message from the Sovereign Lord: O my people, I will open your graves of exile and cause you to rise again. Then I will bring you back to the land of Israel. When this happens, O my people, you will know that I am the Lord.” Ezekiel 37:11-13 (NLT)
        Israel was reborn
        “‘Who has ever seen or heard of anything as strange as this? Has a nation ever been born in a single day? Has a country ever come forth in a mere moment? But by the time Jerusalem’s birth pains begin, the baby will be born; the nation will come forth. Would I ever bring this nation to the point of birth and then not deliver it?’ asks the Lord. ‘No! I would never keep this nation from being born,’ says your God.” Isaiah 66:8-9 (NLT)

        • adam

          “You are blind if you have never seen a successful prophecy and totally don’t understand the word then. ”

          Then enlighten us.
          I’ve never seen a successful prophecy either.

          “‘Who has ever seen or heard of anything as strange as this? Has a nation ever been born in a single day? ”

          Nope.

          You are lying about history.

          “The History of Israel encompasses the Jewish history in the Land of Israel, as well as the history of the modern State of Israel. Modern Israel and the West Bank are roughly located on the site of the ancient kingdoms of Israel and Judah. It is the birthplace of the Hebrew language and of the Abrahamic religions, and contains sites sacred to Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Samaritanism, Druze and Bahá’í Faith.

          Although coming under the sway of various empires and home to a variety of ethnicities, the Land of Israel was predominantly Jewish until the 3rd century.[1] The area became increasingly Christian after the 3rd century and then largely Muslim following the 7th century conquest
          and until the middle of the 20th century. It was a focal point of conflict between Christianity and Islam between 1096 and 1291, and from the end of the Crusades was part of the Syrian province of first the Mamluk Sultanate and then the Ottoman Empire until the British conquest in 1917.

          A Jewish national movement, Zionism, emerged in the late-19th century. Following the British capture of Ottoman territories in the Levant, the Balfour Declaration in World War I and the formation of the Mandate of Palestine, Aliyah (Jewish immigration to the Land of Israel) increased, causing Arab–Jewish tensions and a collision of the Arab and Jewish nationalist movements. Israeli independence in 1948 ]””https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Israel

          And you need to understand, it wasnt the ‘love of God’ that created Israel, but Jewish terrorism.

          After World War II, between 1945 and the 29 November 1947 Partition vote, British soldiers and policemen were targeted by Irgun and Lehi. Haganah and Palmah first collaborated with the British against them, particularly during the Hunting Season, before actively joining them in the Jewish Resistance Movement,then finally choosing an official neutral position after 1946 while the
          Irgun and the Lehi went on their attacks against the British.[9]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zionist_political_violence

        • Luke Holton

          Large numbers of Jewish immigrants, many of them World War II veterans and Holocaust survivors, now began arriving in the new state of Israel, and many joined the IDF. So how am I lying about history? The country of Israel was reborn. Jewish terrorism is simply your opinion. Almost every country that has come to be today has done so through war. Just google Israel reborn it isn’t that hard. You managed to find Wikipedia.

        • adam

          ” The country of Israel was reborn. ” not instantly or even quickly like you LIED about

          “Jewish terrorism is simply your opinion.”

          Nope, historical FACT, I provided a link where you could educate yourself.

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2fc0c20c12ec1e2dc02d579fef09f94ad96a2b78dbc86586c7eaec2aee711e23.png

        • You are blind if you have never seen a successful prophecy and totally don’t understand the word then.

          Does that apply to you as well? Are you blind if you don’t see and understand a prophecy brought to fruition by the other guy’s god?

        • Luke Holton

          What prophecies would those be? And if they did come to fruition how can you even try to claim atheism? Honestly it amazes me more how atheist blindly follow many main stream Scientific theories as if they have actually been tested and proven over time. Most in the Theory of evolution are just hypothesis, yet Atheist act like theist are idiots for even believing there is a God. You can’t even come up with a good story of how we all came to be. Most of the theories are seriously out there. What a joke.

        • You get an A for confidence, but you need to make sure that you’re backing the right horse.

          What prophecies would those be?

          It’s a hypothetical.

          And if they did come to fruition how can you even try to claim atheism?

          It’s a hypothetical.

          Honestly it amazes me more how atheist blindly follow many main stream Scientific theories as if they have actually been tested and proven over time.

          It amazes me how fundamentalist Christians blindly follow the not-evidence of religion when it’s actually science that has a track record. What has Christianity taught us about reality that has been shown (through evidence) to be true?

          Most in the Theory of evolution are just hypothesis

          And you say this as someone with a doctorate in biology? Or are you just making shit up?

          yet Atheist act like theist are idiots for even believing there is a God.

          It is a little odd believing in something so fundamental without good evidence. But perhaps you have some? Show us.

          You can’t even come up with a good story of how we all came to be. Most of the theories are seriously out there. What a joke.

          Now this gives me pause. The scientific consensus—that is, the consensus of the people who are actually qualified to understand the evidence—all say that evolution is our best theory of how life came to be the way it is. But now Luke tells me that that’s quite stupid. I dunno—Luke’s argument sounds pretty compelling. I’m hesitating . . .

        • Luke Holton

          Actually they all don’t. There are many highly educated Phd scientist that don’t agree with the dogma that is evolution. So what makes them incorrect and many mainstream scientist correct? Scientist have been getting things wrong for generations. What makes you truly think that just because they are educated to this point in history they are correct? Many have changed their theories over time over and over. We aren’t even close to really understanding everything.

        • Susan

          There are many highly educated Phd scientist that don’t agree with the dogma that is evolution.

          Feel free to cite their scientific papers on the subject of evolution. Also, give us examples of “dogma” on the subject of evolution in the relevant fields.

          So what makes them incorrect and many mainstream scientists correct?

          Who are they?

          Many have changed their theories over time over and over.

          Of course. When their models are supported by evidence.

          We aren’t really close to understanding everything.

          That doesn’t mean we can’t understand anything and that you get to just make shit up (as creationist web sites do).

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ha ha…another woo woo creationist fuckwit has just arrived. Let the chewing commence.

        • Ignorant Amos
        • Brilliant!

        • adam

          “There are many highly educated Phd scientist that don’t agree with the dogma that is evolution.”

          And just what is their Phd in?

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6865a4cce3282762d39ccbf755e5a9a9ac316fdc6eeed7b3093b367aedf73658.jpg

          “So what makes them incorrect and many mainstream scientist correct?”

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ba84f8055b4d39d6678611c48e8069dd2234f9f79dc706a30b4b5d3546aa5665.jpg

          “Scientist have been getting things wrong for generations. ”

          Like what?

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4f078e39c7bdab50f818933b99b5e11535933fa26a1f0007001fc3c5ae3f09aa.jpg

          “We aren’t even close to really understanding everything.”

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1e354fc7cc2b98ee33f9a417062b3d79eafde2b48cf1d653e36212bc07a77cf2.jpg

        • Mal

          It’s not so much about these scientists getting it wrong but about deliberately presenting false findings and theories. They are not ignorant; they are mischievous liars trying to justify scientism.

        • epeeist

          It’s not so much about these scientists getting it wrong but about deliberately presenting false findings and theories.

          And the biologists, cosmologists, physicists, archaeologists an palaeontologists who have done this are?

          They are not ignorant; they are mischievous liars trying to justify scientism.

          And those claiming that science can answer all questions are?

        • Ignorant Amos

          It’s patently obvious you haven’t a clue what you are talking about, or understand how science works. Ah, well, ho-hum!

          You are just another knuckle dragger, one of a number that has been frequenting this forum just recently.

          Is there a Knuckle-Draggers-R-Us meeting place where ya all meet and conspire to invade a particular site one at a time?

        • Is there a Knuckle-Draggers-R-Us meeting place where ya all meet and conspire to invade a particular site one at a time?

          I’m pretty sure Meetup.com will show the closest meeting.

        • Mal

          You are just an Ignorant name caller. You must be from a group called Ignorant-R-Us.

        • Susan

          You are just an Ignorant name caller. You must be from a group called Ignorant-R-Us.

          Very impressive. You are one in the long line of people who think themselves clever for pouncing on Ignorant Amos’s carefully chosen name.

          Your argument is a disaster. As IA has pointed out. Because you haven’t done your homework (something that “Ignorant” Amos makes great pains to do).

          Acknowledging ignorance is an excellent first step that IA took years ago. Because of that, it’s obvious that he has learned an awful lot. Still, he recognizes his ignorance (as we all should on subjects beyond our paygrade)

          I’m ignorant about most things. But that doesn’t mean I’m buying the snake oil that you might have bought in your unexamined ignorance.

          Every black belt is a white belt in their approach.

          If you’d like to talk about science, please actually talk about science.

          .

        • Mal

          I was talking about scientists who present incorrect views. And if your IA really does his homework then he would not have judged me so harshly. Acknowledging ignorance and then broadcasting it is not a great virtue.

        • epeeist

          I was talking about scientists who present incorrect views.

          Which scientists, and why are their views incorrect?

        • Mal

          Which scientists? The ones that present incorrect views. For example, the large body of scientists who claim that our CO2 is the cause of something they call ‘Global Warming’. And the ones who draw figures of early humans as bent, stooped and who provide false missing links.

        • epeeist

          For example, the large body of scientists who claim that our CO2 is the cause of something they call ‘Global Warming’.

          You don’t seem to have provided any information on why the large majority of climate scientists who accept AGW are wrong.

          And the ones who draw figures of early humans as bent, stooped and who provide false missing links.

          So what did early humans actually look like, and how do you know?

          And what “false missing links” are you referring to?

          Oh, and a few names for the scientists who are deliberately providing false information wouldn’t go amiss.

        • Mal

          We could begin with the authors who present these views as ‘facts’ in science text books.

        • epeeist

          We could begin with the authors who present these views as ‘facts’ in science text books.

          Well we could, if you actually named some authors and some of the false facts that they put in their books. Let’s try and easy one shall we, a link to the paper by Arrhenius on heat absorption by carbon dioxide. This is the foundation on which the idea of global warming is built. Is it wrong, and if so why?

          But you aren’t going to provide a critique of the paper or a list of authors or false facts are you, what is going to happen is that you are going to carry on with your vague hand waving and feeble attempts to poison the well.

        • Mal
        • epeeist

          Which is not an answer to whether Arrhenius is correct or not. It is the usual creationist/denier trick of posting anything even though it isn’t apposite to the question being asked.

          I note that you still haven’t named any authors or told us why they are wrong.

        • A site dedicated to rejecting the consensus view of climate science. Yeah, that sounds objective.

        • Greg G.

          Mal has never met a conspiracy theory that was too far-fetched to believe.

        • Mal

          Is consensus science?

        • Michael Neville

          It is the general opinion of scientists, remaining accepted until modified or superseded. Everything in science is provisional, unlike religion where everything is absolute.

        • Looks like they have an agenda–that was my point.

          As for the scientific consensus, it’s the option that we outsiders to the field must take. On what grounds could we possibly reject it?

        • Yeah, like climate change is pointed to by “science”??

          But this is small fry. Do us all a favor and take care of the really nonsensical “science”: quantum theory. You know about it, right? Things are in two places at once, they seemingly communicate instantaneously, they can tunnel through barriers–I mean, it’s nuts.

          Go.

        • Ignorant Amos

          You can’t even accurately describe what it is you are complaining about. What chance is there that you have what it takes to make a judgement on what is correct?

        • Mal

          Not complaining about anything. Just presenting my opinion.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Don’t ya just love Dunning-Kruger in effect?

        • adam

          then expose those lies and be a hero, instead of a magical wishing zero.

        • Mal

          The numerous false missing links, global warming caused by our CO2, macro-evolution, Copernican Principle, gays are born that way etc.

        • What is the “Copernican principle”? Surely you’re not rejecting the heliocentric solar system?

          I suggest you pick just one of these scientific concerns out of the pile labeled “Things that science says that make Jesus cry.” Expand on your reasoning.

        • Mal

          I am not rejecting heliocentric solar system but in view of new findings I have an open mind. A closed mind is not a scientific one.

        • epeeist

          I am not rejecting heliocentric solar system but in view of new findings I have an open mind.

          New findings? You have a reference to these do you?

        • Mal
        • epeeist

          Well one rather thought it was that.

          Let’s ask a couple of questions:

          1. Are things that vary with the reference frame real or not?

          2. In a geocentric universe what is the velocity of Neptune around the earth?

          Let’s ask another one while we are at it:

          What are the scientific qualifications of any of those who made the film?

        • Mal

          The responses came from top scientists being interviewed. You have not faulted the views presented.

        • epeeist

          The responses came from top scientists being interviewed.

          Who have said they were interviewed under false pretences.

          You have not faulted the views presented.

          Oh but I have, it’s just that you don’t know enough (any?) since to realise it.

          I note that you haven’t even attempted to answer any of my questions.

        • Mal

          ‘False pretences’ has been debunked. Documents were produced by the producers.
          I answered your questions by stating that the responses came from the scientists in the documentary.

        • epeeist

          ‘False pretences’ has been debunked. Documents were produced by the producers.

          So you could easily give me a citation that shows this to be true.

          I answered your questions by stating that the responses came from the scientists in the documentary.

          I asked you a) whether things that vary with the reference frame were real or not, b) what the orbital velocity of Neptune would be in a geocentric universe and c) what the scientific qualifications of DeLano and Sugenis are.

          You have answered none of these.

        • Greg G.

          ‘False pretences’ has been debunked. Documents were produced by the producers.

          http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2458876/trivia?ref_=tt_trv_trv

          The video the producers posted rebutting the charge that they misled the scientists and narrator of this movie actually confirms that they did indeed keep the participants in the dark as to the true purpose of the documentary. It shows that the contract signed by physicist Lawrence Krauss was carefully worded to avoid any mention of geocentrism, either directly or indirectly, merely stating that the documentary would cover various theories and controversies concerning cosmology. There are indeed plenty of scientific theories–mainstream and controversial–in the field of cosmology, and Professor Krauss has contributed his viewpoint to more than a few science documentaries covering them, but geocentrism isn’t one of them. As the producers were no doubt banking on, Professor Krauss would not have even considered the possibility that this vague catch-all language in his contract masked their single-minded purpose of promoting the long debunked pseudo-scientific claim of geocentrism.

        • epeeist

          http://www.imdb.com/title/t

          Since you are linking to IMDB I think it is worthwhile noting their estimates of how much the movie made, namely $86,172.

          Also worthwhile noting that the part of the blurb that states “astonishing new scientific observations” is a load of bollocks, there have been no such observations, unless of course Mal is able to provide us with a reference that isn’t totally irrelevant.

        • Greg G.

          I’d like to see the “new scientific observations” even if they aren’t “astonishing.”

        • Mal

          But the documentary is not about ethnocentrism. Did you see it? I did.

        • Greg G.

          But the documentary is not about ethnocentrism. Did you see it? I did.

          Who said it had anything to do with ethnocentrism?

          PS: If watching it causes that much brain damage, I think I will pass.

        • Mal

          Yes, I have suffered a stroke that has slightly affected my vision. I meant geocentrism. And I thought you would have thought so.

        • Greg G.

          How did your vision problem make you type “ethnocentrism”? I would have thought you would have thought I meant “geocentricism” even if you misread it as “ethnocentricism”.

        • Mal

          No, It was auto corrected and I did not notice it. But, I did tell you that I made a mistake.

        • Greg G.

          The opening of the video at http://www.theprinciplemovie.com/ says, “Science has found evidence that Earth is the center of the Universe.”

          You typed, “But the documentary is not about ethnocentrism.” If you meant to type, “But the documentary is not about geocentrism,” your sentence is even more wrong.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Along with Krauss, at least two of the mainstream scientists who appear in the film aren’t so happy about it. Max Tegmark, a brilliant MIT cosmologist and science communicator, is spoken of admiringly by DeLano in the radio show. When I asked about his appearance in the film, Tegmark emailed: “They cleverly tricked a whole bunch of us scientists into thinking that they were independent filmmakers doing an ordinary cosmology documentary, without mentioning anything about their hidden agenda or that people like Sungenis were involved.” Ditto for South African mathematician and cosmologist George Ellis, a well-respected professor at the University of Cape Town who wrote The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time with Stephen Hawking. “I was interviewed for it but they did not disclose this agenda, which of course is nonsense,” he wrote me. “I don’t think it’s worth responding to — it just gives them publicity. To ignore is the best policy. But for the record, I totally disavow that silly agenda.”

        • Mal

          The documentary had not even been released or seen by them when they were supposed to make those comments.
          They have not continued with those comments.

        • Greg G.

          When the producers tried to debunk the scientists claims, the video accidentally confirmed the scientists’ claims. Once the film was thoroughly debunked, there was no need to spend the rest of their lives talking about it. It became meaningless.

        • Mal

          No, they caught out and hence no further noises from them.

        • Greg G.

          I recall the event being in the news, then never a peep until you brought it up.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The documentary had not even been released or seen by them when they were supposed to make those comments.

          It isn’t a documentary.anymore than Disney’s “Fantasia” is a documentary.

          But why do you think that it matters if those comments were made before the crap was released? Do you think there was some overwhelming data in the movie that could overthrow the years of physics studied by those individuals?

          Mal, the expert folk whom that lying wee bastard DeLano hoodwinked do not support a geocentric solar system…end of.

          Myself, and a few others here, have personal experience dealing with DeLano on two internet forums. He is an asinine fuckwit and anyone who takes his nonsense serious is also an asinine fuckwit too.

          He was banned from one of those sites by the Catholic administrators because he was too much of an asinine fuck with for even that conservative venue.

          Rick DeLano is the producer and writer for the documentary film, THE PRINCIPLE. The film challenges conventional cosmological theory concerning gravity and the universe. It includes exclusive interviews from Catholic theologian Robert Sungenis, who wrote “Galileo was Wrong,” Max Tegmark, a physics professor at MIT, and many other thought leaders from mainstream and alternative science. Rick DeLano has received criticism for THE PRINCIPLE from the established scientific community, as well as religious institutions who want to maintain the Copernican model of the universe.
          Even holy rollers think he is an asinine fuckwit ffs.

          As for Sungenis, he’s another asinine fuckwit anti-Semite who denies the Holocaust and the moon landings. But I guess that’s where you want to be.

        • Mal

          You are f. Bye
          ull of it

        • Ignorant Amos

          Spoiiiiinnng!

        • Ignorant Amos

          Too gullible for words.

          The top scientists you talk about were misrepresented. DeLano was dishonest..

        • Mal

          They once made that claim but did not go on with it after certain facts were made known to the public.

        • Greg G.

          Do you suppose Mal might have been involved in the production of the film?

        • Greg G.
        • Mal

          You trust your sources while I trust mine.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Oh fer feck sake…not our auld pal Rick DeLano the lying toe rag.

          Court records for DeLano turned up one unexpected hit: In 2002, a Rick DeLano was listed as a defendant in a $10 million suit alleging he and others had participated in a scheme to misrepresent stock in internet companies. “Defendants Perlman, DeLano, and Levy introduced Plaintiff to several individuals whom they claimed were officers and directors of these fifty-four companies (‘Companies’). Plaintiff alleges that these representations were intentionally and willfully misleading,” according to the records. In the suit, DeLano is listed as a California resident; his current phone number has an area code that puts him in California, too, which would also go some way toward explaining his relationship with the film production company. The case settled for an undisclosed amount.

        • You have an extraordinarily open mind if you’re now mulling over that whole heliocentric thing.

          And if the entire scientific project rests on your shoulders, you may be taking on too much of a burden. I recommend accepting the scientific consensus.

        • TheNuszAbides

          looks like Hovind is all the consensus Mal needs.

        • Mal

          I do not need peers agreeing with each other. I think the truth is more important than any other consideration.

        • A noble sentiment, but how do you decide?

        • TheNuszAbides

          that’s a great starting point. but what do you actually think qualifies you (or anyone who agrees with you) for the pretense of skepticism with regard to evolutionary biology?

        • Ignorant Amos

          A mind so open that everything has fell out by the looks of things.

        • Mal

          A closed mind would have no idea.

        • Ignorant Amos

          That’s right.

          Who here has a closed mind do ya think?

          If you have an “anything goes” attitude, then you can use anything to explain everything.

          For example. I can assert that Space Ponies did it all.

          Susan can assert that snowflake fairies did it all.

          You can say YahwehJesus did it all.

          BobS can say science did it all.

          There is empirical evidence for just one of those assertions.

          With regards to The Principle, you, an ignorant, are choosing to go with two fraudulent kooks with absolutely no relevant qualifications, in the face of centuries and millions of scientists with mountains of evidence to the contrary. Then your bamboozled as to why a rational human being calls you an asinine fuckwit.

          In spite of being shown the evidence by such scientists right here on this site. Evidence you probably don’t understand, let alone try to refute.

          So yeah, if you are going to act like a clown, people are going to be laughing at you.

        • adam

          “A closed mind is not a scientific one.”

          But YOU are closed to everything but a “God”

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/7e6eceefda06b08605b3653301b5e246ee7fbd6ce2a594a4e6a0d18e41ce10f5.jpg

        • Mal

          Poor statement. A religious person might not read many books about religions but like many scientists who are religious they read many books that interest the.

        • adam

          No, a good statement, seeing as you are OBVIOUSLY not a scientist.

        • epeeist

          What is the “Copernican principle”?

          AKA the “principle of mediocrity”, namely that there are no privileged observers. Though somehow I doubt this is what Mal was referring to.

        • adam

          Ignorant claims is not an expose.

          They are ignorant claims.

        • said Mal, as he used a computer. And electricity. And lighting. And the internet. “Show me one thing science has given us!” he thundered.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Show me one thing the Romans have ever done for us?

          https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FbeCdOj0TTU

        • Mal

          There are many good scientists, inventors and thinkers who have knowledge of the very trustworthy natural laws and who use them to do good. I believe that it takes intelligence to create the things you named and a lots more. I also believe that it was due to existence of superior intelligence that provided us with the materials and the laws to make these things – plus more (sun, moon stars, and their importance to us. The problem is not with the study we call science but with some of the people associated with it.

        • Joe

          I also believe that it was due to existence of superior intelligence that provided us with the materials and the laws to make these things – plus more (sun, moon stars, and their importance to us.

          Aliens?

          The problem is not with the study we call science but with some of the people associated with it.

          Let me guess: The people who think differently to your deeply held beliefs?

        • Mal

          If you believe in aliens then that is your prerogative. I believe in a God. You guessed wrong.

        • Joe

          Well, it could just as easily be aliens. Why not?

        • Mal

          If you sincerely believe that then arguments to the contrary will not affect you. My reasoning differs from yours.

        • Joe

          I don’t sincerely believe that. I just wondered how you ruled out aliens as intelligent designers?

        • Mal

          Because I have a very good reason to believe something else.

        • Joe

          What reason is that?

        • Mal

          That God created the world is the reason I do not see another, or even chance (which does not exist in nature) as our originator. You are free to believe what you want.

        • Joe

          That God created the world is the reason I do not see another, or even chance

          You don’t see any other reason? What does a non-god-created world look like?

        • adam
        • Could you give some evidence?

        • adam

          ” I believe that it takes intelligence to create the things you named and
          a lots more. I also believe that it was due to existence of superior
          intelligence that provided us with the materials and the laws to make
          these things – plus more (sun, moon stars, and their importance to us.”

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bf3ab7ed04d447ff091f3cf19fcdefc6aafeccae006445994adc3759435c0aa5.jpg

          So nature is TOO COMPLEX to have evolved any other way than by creation of an EVEN MORE COMPLEX being.

          So OBVIOUSLY, something EVEN MORE COMPLEX had to create your ‘creator’…..

        • There are many highly educated Phd scientist that don’t agree with the dogma that is evolution.

          . . . except, with a handful of exceptions, they’re not biologists. So no one ought to care.

          So what makes them incorrect and many mainstream scientist correct?

          Ooh! Ooh! Pick me! It’s because they’re not biologists.

          Scientist have been getting things wrong for generations. What makes you truly think that just because they are educated to this point in history they are correct?

          Because of the evidence.

          This apparently is a poorly worded form of, “Just because science says something, that doesn’t mean that it’s true.” And that’s right, but what it does mean is that if science says something, that’s the best approximation to the truth we have at the moment.

          Many have changed their theories over time over and over. We aren’t even close to really understanding everything.

          . . . said Luke as he used a computer and the internet. (Gee, maybe science is actually a useful tool for learning about nature. Something to think about.)

        • Greg G.

          From Project Steve:

          NCSE’s “Project Steve” is a tongue-in-cheek parody of a long-standing creationist tradition of amassing lists of “scientists who doubt evolution” or “scientists who dissent from Darwinism.”

          Creationists draw up these lists to try to convince the public that evolution is somehow being rejected by scientists, that it is a “theory in crisis.” Not everyone realizes that this claim is unfounded. NCSE has been asked numerous times to compile a list of thousands of scientists affirming the validity of the theory of evolution. Although we easily could have done so, we have resisted. We did not wish to mislead the public into thinking that scientific issues are decided by who has the longer list of scientists!

          Project Steve pokes fun at this practice and, because “Steves” are only about 1% of scientists, it also makes the point that tens of thousands of scientists support evolution. And it honors the late Stephen Jay Gould, evolutionary biologist, NCSE supporter, and friend.

          We’d like to think that after Project Steve, we’ll have seen the last of bogus “scientists doubting evolution” lists, but it’s probably too much to ask. We hope that when such lists are proposed, reporters and other citizens will ask, “How many Steves are on your list!?”

          The creationist list has dentists, not just scientists, and there are many who asked to have their names removed from the list because the claims being made about the list are not aligned with the statement they signed.

      • Woody Feliciano

        How about this one, please be honest if what is being described rings a bell for you: “instead of fragrance there will be stench, instead of a sash, a rope, instead of well dressed hair baldness, instead of fine clothing, a sackcloth, instead of beauty, branding”

        • Nope.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Thanks for being honest. It’s Isaiah 3:24 foretelling what will happen to the Jews, in the future obviously. Does that not accurately describe what happened to the Jews under Hitler?

        • The Jews under Hitler? I thought maybe the Black Death that killed 100 million (give or take) over a few years in the 14th century. And I’m sure we could find lots of other disasters caused either by Man or God that that might be a plausible description of.

        • Woody Feliciano

          So what Isaiah foretold regarding the future of the jews doesn’t match what happened to the Jews during the holocaust?

        • Is. 3 is talking about the punishment that Judah will be getting. They will be taken into exile, and it’s going to suck. Sure, that’s about the future, but it’s about the immediate future. (And as for it being a literal prophecy, one wonders if this part of Isaiah was written before or after the invasion and exile.)

        • Ignorant Amos

          Nostradamus anyone?

        • Damian Byrne

          “So what Isaiah foretold regarding the future of the jews doesn’t match what happened to the Jews during the holocaust?”

          I read what you referred to as an Isaiah prophecy predicting the Holocaust.
          It’s incredibly vague. Where in that do you see details such as “Nazi Germany”, “the years 1939-1945” and “the death toll among them was 6 million” (or phrases similar to them in wording)?
          The prophecy couldindicate the Holocaust…but the problem is that that’s not the only thing it indicates.

        • Have you read Isaiah 3? It’s talking about the invasion of Judah and exile. No, it’s not about Hitler.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Tell you what, I tried, I can’t force someone who doesn’t want to believe to believe. So I’ll go on my merry way, happy in knowing that tried. I’ll leave you with two thoughts. 1-I’d rather be wrong in thinking I’ll be judged than in thinking I won’t be judged and be wrong. 2- when the rapture happens reach for the book you have 3.5 years to accept Christ. You’ve been warned.

        • You didn’t come here to try to convince us, remember? You came to open your own mind and hear what we had to say to see if that might force a change in beliefs on your part. I don’t think you were particularly open minded if you’re running away so quickly.

          1-this is Pascal’s Wager. If you don’t realize how poor an argument is, let us know, and several of us will, I’m sure, explain it to you.

          2-clarify this. The end times are beginning right now? Why is that? And tell us what you will do if 3.5 years from now the Rapture doesn’t happen.

        • Woody Feliciano

          That’s funny. You’re right I didn’t chime in to convince you. I certainly didn’t chime in to be convinced that you are right. I’m quite secure in my faith if anything it grows stronger every day. I’m not running away I’m following Jesus advise and wiping the dust off feet.
          I didn’t say anything would happen in 3.5 years. I said after the rapture then the clock begins. Jesus said no man knows the day or hour, so while I believe we are nearing his second coming a lot still has to happen.

        • Sounds like you had no intention of making your faith vulnerable to new ideas. Be careful–don’t break the 9th Commandment.

          Do you want to evaluate your experience here? You’ve gotten lots of responses to your challenge.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Are you kidding my faith is constantly under attack. Are you seriously worried about breaking a commandment you don’t believe in?
          Please forgive me but I have to say I’ll never understand the atheist zeal to convince believers that they are delusional, why do any of you care what I believe or don’t believe? Time and again I’ve heard it said don’t shove your beliefs in my face yet atheists are constantly shoving their non beliefs towards us.

        • Michael Neville

          Time and again I’ve heard it said don’t shove your beliefs in my face

          None of us care that you worship Jesus and other gods. However many Christians insist on telling us all about Jesus and Hell and all the other stuff that we’ve heard before. What’s worse, large numbers of Christians want to inflict the consequences of their beliefs on the rest of us. Creationists want to replace science education with teaching religious mythology. Homophobes and transphobes justify their bigotry because “gawd thinks GLBTs are icky“. Catholics, Mormons and some fundamentalist evangelicals want to outlaw contraception because Baby Jesus cries whenever someone uses a condom. All too many of you ARE shoving your beliefs in our faces and guess what, we don’t like it.

          I’m quite willing to discuss Christianity with you just like I’m willing to discuss the Vietnam War with my nephews and old movies with my daughter. Those subjects can make for interesting conversations. However I prefer if you didn’t try to convert me back to Christianity because, to paraphrase Daniel 5:27, it’s been weighed in the balance and found wanting.

        • Woody Feliciano

          If you didn’t care why do atheist constantly tells us how dumb we are for believing. You and your ilk chastise, criticize, and mock us for our beliefs, so please don’t tell me we aren’t under attack

        • Michael Neville

          Because you are dumb for believing. There is no, none, zero, zip point shit evidence that your god or any other god exists. But despite this complete and utter lack of any reasonable reason for believing in gods, you continue to do so. If you consider that to be an attack then you need to grow a thicker skin. It’s not an attack, it’s laughing at stupidity.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Why is that your business, what do you care ugh

        • MNb

          It’s our business because you dump your dumb stuff here on this very page, which is a public space.

        • Michael Neville

          Because I care about truth. If you want to believe in superstitious nonsense with no factual basis then go for it. Have a nice time. But don’t expect me to pat you on the head for your silly beliefs. And yes, silly is the correct word.

        • MNb

          “why do atheist constantly tells us how dumb we are for believing.”
          Because the non-arguments and non-evidence you believers bring up are dumb beyond our imagination. Your “they wouldn’t die for a lie” and especially the way you cling to it is an excellent example.

        • Greg G.

          If I believed that Elvis Presley was pumping gas in Tupelo, I would want to be corrected. If someone else believes that, I would assume that they would rather be corrected. We all have some incorrect beliefs. I like to learn new things and turn around things that I am not correct about. Trying to correct someone of their beliefs is a sign of respect. However, when one becomes so invested in their beliefs that they cannot separate themselves from their beliefs, an attack on their beliefs seems like an attack on the self to them.

          Can you separate yourself from your beliefs so you can examine your beliefs without emotion and fear? Can you establish the foundations of your beliefs with reason and evidence without resorting to wishful thinking? Can you push through the discomfort of cognitive dissonance to get to the implications of your beliefs?

          What evidence do you have? The extrabiblical evidence is too late. It only attests to people who read the gospels who had no other knowledge. Many different scholars have identified the sources that Mark used, which accounts for nearly the whole story. Much of it is from the Greek literature that was commonly imitated. That means the other gospels used Mark.

          That leaves the early epistles which do not support an itinerant preacher/teacher at all. Everything the early epistles say about Jesus can be found in the Old Testament. Paul tells us he got his information through revelation from the Lord and from the scriptures, which apparently are the same thing to Paul. He tells us his knowledge is not inferior to the “super-apostles,” so he knew their knowledge came from the OT, too.

        • Yeah, it must be a bitch being in the only segment of the population that’s electable to public office (despite the guarantee of no religious test for office in Article VI of the Constitution). I marvel that you’re as stoic as you are as you shoulder that burden.

        • Ignorant Amos

          You think because it’s religion it should be exempt from ridicule for being stupid. Am afraid not, no undeserved respect from this quarter.

          https://i.imgur.com/2YqJfZ2.jpg

          Now, when you are being persecuted in the same way as religion has persecuted historically, then you can claim the right to call it “attack” ya Dime Bar.

          Go play yer victim card someplace where they give a shite.

          https://i.pinimg.com/736x/61/5d/f7/615df76ebc7902b008124a8a5f0ed9ae–all-quotes-famous-quotes.jpg

        • Philmonomer

          Are you kidding my faith is constantly under attack.

          How so ?

          Are you seriously worried about breaking a commandment you don’t believe in?

          The best way to interact with people of different beliefs/worldviews (if you hope to change their mind/have an effect on them), is from within their worldview.

          Please forgive me but I have to say I’ll never understand the atheist zeal to convince believers that they are delusional, why do any of you care what I believe or don’t believe?

          There are a lot of different possible responses here. On one level, I think it is a basic human desire to want to convince those around me of the truth of my worldview. On another level, I hope to see positive change in the world. For example, I suspect you are against gay marriage (and all forms of same sex relations). I think this view does active harm in the world. In a round about way, I think convincing you that Christianity is almost certainly not true, would be a good way to move people away from such views.

          Time and again I’ve heard it said don’t shove your beliefs in my face yet atheists are constantly shoving their non beliefs towards us.

          How atheists constantly doing this?

        • Woody Feliciano

          You haven’t a clue as to what I believe in, one thing is certain unlike you I don’t need to resort to name calling and I totally accept the fact that some like yourselves refuse to accept the message and I know this because the Bible told me this would happen.

        • Philmonomer

          Either 1) this reply was meant for someone else or 2) you are deeply confused (“unlike you I don’t need to resort to name calling” Huh?)

          Regardless, you haven’t responded in a meaningful way.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Regardless, you haven’t responded in a meaningful way.

          Because he can’t. The few attempts to address the answers he has been provided with have been fallacious. Moving the goalposts and ignoring replies. He appears to be a lying Christian troll not the least bit interested in debate.

        • I think we have at least a clue to what you believe in. Haven’t you made clear that you’re a Christian?

        • Ignorant Amos

          You are lying again.

          Point out where Philmonomer called you names in that comment?

          You aren’t going to that familiar Christian refuge of tone trolling and playing the victim card because you’ve got nothing else and can’t cope, are ya?

        • BlackMamba44
        • Ignorant Amos

          You came here ya dopey cunt. Keep on knuckle-dragging on by like ya claimed. This is the adult table, no room for infants where the big folks are sitting.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Lol, if this is how “the big folks” think, I will follow Christ advise and just walk away.

        • Ignorant Amos

          And yet ya didn’t just walk away. Were ya lying when ya said ya would walk away…or is it the case that ya don’t have any self control? Either, or both, doesn’t surprise us here, it’s par for the course with religidiots. We see it here all the time.

          Read Susan’s comment, no point in me wasting time spilling ink repeating her well put points.

          You don’t seem to know what you are talking about in a place full of folk who do know, at least a lot more than you do, about what they are talking about. That much is evident.

          You are trolling.

        • MNb

          Don’t worry, nobody here will try to prevent you. I will have forgotten your name in two days at the max.

        • Ignorant Amos

          How does one shove non-beliefs in your face?

          Is that the same as when you shove your non-belief in Islam in Muslim faces?

          Or the same as when you shove your non-belief in Judaisms in the face of Jews?

          Maybe it it’s like when you are shoving non-beliefs in Hinduism in the face of Hindus?

          Cause Christians are all about being the meek and mild….when they are not advocating things like amending the law so that stoning atheists to death is legal in accordance with scripture.

          Should we stone atheists?

          How do I suggest we proceed? I know it’s illegal to stone atheists without the permission of the courts here in America. What I suggest is that the Constitution actually makes it legal to do this. But first, we must test this case in a court of law. Have your congressman or congresswoman write a bill the Christian right to stone unbelievers, and if (more likely when) it is shot down by the heathen, ungodly Congress, we take it to court, as Congress has no right to pass any law forbidding the free practice of religion.

          https://creationsciencestudy.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/should-we-stone-atheists/

        • Wow. That’s some messed-up thinking.

        • Are you kidding my faith is constantly under attack.

          So doubt is an ongoing issue with you? Maybe that’s reality trying to tell you something.

          Are you seriously worried about breaking a commandment you don’t believe in?

          I’m not the one who might be lying.

          But to respond a different way, why would you think I’d have a problem with “don’t lie”?

          Please forgive me but I have to say I’ll never understand the atheist zeal to convince believers that they are delusional, why do any of you care what I believe or don’t believe?

          1. That’s odd coming from a Christian. Many Christians, as perhaps you know, are eager to convert atheists and save them from the fiery torment their loving god has created for them.

          2. If the issue were knitting (you’re a knitter and I’m not), I wouldn’t care. But that’s not the issue. Can you truly be scratching your head, wondering what being a Christian in 2017 America might mean to an atheist? You’re unaware of efforts to get prayer into schools and town council meetings, Creationism in science class, a de facto religious test for public office (despite article VI of the Constitution), and so on? You can’t understand why Roy Moore’s giving the finger to the Constitution by putting the 10 Commandments in the state supreme court building might be a problem?

          Time and again I’ve heard it said don’t shove your beliefs in my face yet atheists are constantly shoving their non beliefs towards us.

          When Christians are as benign as knitters, then your concern will be appropriate.

        • Woody Feliciano

          I have no doubt whatsoever that Yeshua is my Lord and savior. Nice try.

        • Which doesn’t really address my comment.

          You’re welcome to stay and chat.

        • MR

          People of other religions have no doubt about their religions as well. What distinguishes your belief from theirs? What convinced you to become a Christian or were you raised Christian?

        • Susan

          Please forgive me but I have to say I’ll never understand the atheist zeal to convince believers that they are delusional,

          Let me get this straight. You showed up here out of the blue, challenged atheists to explain how some humans in a story would risk their lives for something that might not be true.

          You were given countless examples of humans doing that in all sorts of situations. There is nothing special about christianity in that regard. You moved the goalposts, showing that you weren’t interested in an honest response. You thought your question would be
          a showstopper but it turned out to be incredibly weak.

          You said

          Tell you what, I tried, I can’t force someone who doesn’t want to believe to believe

          You tried and failed and it should be obvious to you why you failed. An honest interlocutor would have acknowledged that.

          Instead, you accuse us of atheist zeal.

          YOU showed up here using terrible reasoning and now, the problem is that we’re trying to convert you due to atheist zeal.

          Do you see the problem there?

          atheists are constantly shoving their non beliefs towards us.

          You’ve got to be kidding.

        • Woody Feliciano

          No I’m not kidding you guys are trying to force Christians to believe in nothing. Those who believe in nothing will fall for anything, While cliche its appropriate.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Now you are not even trying to disguise your lying stupidity.

        • Pofarmer

          Why would you think atheists believe in nothing? (I’m sure I’ll be sorry I asked.)

        • In the first place, atheists are a small minority in the U.S.–you know that, right? I’m always amused about Christians who complain about oppression.

          We don’t want to force you to believe anything. What we want to force is a respect for the Constitution’s separation of church and state.

          And you know that atheism is nothing more than the answer to one question, is there a god? That’s it. Atheists believe in quite a lot more than “nothing.”

        • Pofarmer

          Do you see the problem there?

          My guess is probably not.

        • Pofarmer

          Uhm, if your faith is under attack constantly, maybe you need to ask yourself why that is.

        • Woody Feliciano

          I know why the Bible tells me why it also tells me to just walk away from those who refuse to believe.

        • Pofarmer

          My guess is, if you didn’t bother people in the first place, you wouldn’t have a problem.

        • Greg G.

          Your right to swing your fist ends at the next person’s nose. Your right to practice your religion ends when you try to practice it on somebody else.

          You tried to use your best reason for belief (I would presume. Why use your second best argument?) and you were shown that it is not a good reason at all. If you have devoted your life to beliefs drawn from fallacies, wouldn’t you want to correct yourself? Do you think that life is not precious enough to seek truth instead of unsubstantiated superstition based on poor reasons?

        • MR

          And yet you walked into an atheist blog…. If anyone is on the “attack” here it’s you. The irony is, we welcome your arguments here. I don’t think any atheist here wants to know anything more than the truth. If there is good evidence for that, we would welcome being corrected.

          Your religion isn’t being attacked (unless you happen to live in Iraq, or someplace like that), it’s being challenged and criticized for not having compelling evidence. When religions influence laws and social division, they should be challenged, don’t you agree? Would you want to be forced to live under Islamic religious laws?

          If the almighty Master of the Universe is behind you, you shouldn’t have any problem defending the truth of your beliefs. The fact that Christians (myself included at one point) can’t point to any concrete evidence suggests you might, just might, be wrong.

        • The Bible tells you just about everything. If you want to engage people or run away, I’m sure there’s a Bible verse for that. If you’re pro-slavery or against it, there’s a Bible verse for that. If you’re a feminist or not, if you’re in favor of civil rights for all citizens or not, if you’re a Second Amendment proponent or a gun control person, and so on.

          What does that tell you about the value of the Bible if it’s a sock puppet?

        • MNb

          “I’ll never understand the atheist zeal to convince believers that they are delusional”
          BWAHAHAHAHA!
          You asked a question in your very first comment. You wrote that you would reconsider if you received an answer.
          Now you’re complaining that you received an answer.

          You win the Internet Award for hypocrisy.

        • Ignorant Amos

          A typical drive by religidiot that thought he’d surface lay a few slam dunk stumping questions that turned out to be turds.

          I don’t think getting owned was the part of the exercise he had in mind.

        • Michael Neville

          The 3.5 years was just a number you plucked out of the air with no particular reason. Thanks for explaining.

          People have been saying that “Jesus is coming any time now” for the last 2000 years. Why is your guess any better than those prior guesses?

        • Woody Feliciano

          Because as prophesied by Isaiah, Israel will be born in a day, a fact that came to pass in May 14 1948

        • Michael Neville

          So something that happened seventy years ago allows you to pull an arbitrary number out of your ass. And you wonder why atheists consider your beliefs to be nonsensical.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Conspiracy theory gone rife. How a grown man can be so gullible is flabbergasting.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ah, yer back.

          Because as prophesied by Isaiah, Israel will be born in a day, a fact that came to pass in May 14 1948

          But that’s not what happened. First off, states are not born. But 4.00 pm on that date was just an arbitrary time that David Ben-Gurion declared the area at that time he called Israel, an independent state. It was a more protracted process than that, that many still don’t recognise.

          Now, YahwehJesus made all sorts of promises he didn’t keep….according to the story books. The Israel that YahwehJesus promised old Abe and his people…for all time…is not the Israel of today, so no prophecy fulfilled.

          http://www.spotlightonisrael.com/Middle_East_Maps/imag026.gif

          The Israelis are still fighting over wee bits of that land mass they were promised, but don’t own, so again, no prophecy fulfilled.

          Ya see, this is a recurring them with the Hebrews. “Promised Land”, conquest, exile, promise broken, Hebrews get the blame for turning from YahwehJesus, repent, return to the Palestinian Levant after exile, praise YahwehJesus for deliverance, replay. The prophecy in Isaiah is not about the return of the Jews to the “Promised Land” in 1948 ya doofus.

          The so-called prophecy in Isaiah refers to the return of the “Chosen One’s” from the Babylonian exile. And given the likely authorship and time the composition of the Book of Isaiah took place, it is a classic case of postdiction.

          Even then, Isaiah was a failed prophecy, because the Jews were dispersed after returning to the “Promised Land” in Isaiah’s time, yet again. By the Romans in 70 CE. What makes you think it can’t happen again?

          You’ve get the religious mind virus real bad, I fear there is little hope for ya.

        • MNb

          My favourite prophecies are the ones like Matth. 24:34-37 “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.”
          Almost 2000 years – “this generation has passed away” since long – and still counting.

          But above all I love the combination with Eccl 1:4 “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.”
          Also false of course – thanks to science we know that our Earth only will last another five billion years at the max.
          Two contradicting prophecies, both false. Marvellous!

        • I assume you’re referring to, “Can a country be born in a day or a nation be brought forth in a moment?” (Is. 66:8)

          You should find a god who can make remarkable prophecies. “Sometime in the vague, distant future, Israel will be born” isn’t much of a prophecy. Besides, this is part of Third Isaiah, the section of the book written after the return of Judah from exile in Babylon. What’s surprising? Judah had been exiled, and then the Judeans were allowed to return. It’s easy to write a prophecy if it’s already happened.

        • Greg G.

          Jesus can’t come in three to five years because evolution is supposed to be overturned in ten to fifteen years. I’m on my fifth cycle based on the ten year projection and nearing the end of the third cycle of the fifteen year projection since I first heard that.

        • Ignorant Amos

          So you were just being a troll, and an imbecilic one at that? Trolls a gonna troll a guess.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Thank you.

        • Ignorant Amos

          No thanks required.

          It was a rhetorical question based on observation. But your answer has now confirmed it. Not that it was needed, mind.

        • MNb

          “I’m quite secure in my faith if anything it grows stronger every day.”
          OK, you’re not a total hypocrite – you admit here that your question and your announcement “I will reconsider” were nothing but a cheap rhetorical trick.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Excuse me but none of you properly explained to me why some would choose to for what according to you is nonsense .

        • MNb

          Excuse me, but let me fix this for you. You should have written

          “Nothing you guys bring up can and will properly explain to me why some would choose to for what according to you is nonsense because it’s a rhetorical cheapo meant to give my nonsensical belief some credibility and my faith if anything grows stronger every day.”

        • Ignorant Amos

          This issue must be really hard for you to comprehend. I’d suggest you take the Outsider Test for Faith, but I know you won’t.

          Let’s try again.

          When you hear of an Islamic suicide bomber blowing up a mosque full of men, women, and children, because he believes Allah is great, his version mind, and he has been convinced by Imam’s that what he is doing is righteous, he will be rewarded in Paradise with a lorded position beside the great one, with 72 virgins at his beck and call, is all a lot of nonsense? Now hold that thought.

          Now transpose that mode of thinking, if ya can, onto every other thing you think is also nonsense, that so-called rational human beings believe to be true. Now you have a model that explains why there are folk that believe stuff to be real, true factual things, but are really nonsense. Okay so far?

          With this model in your head….pretend you are not a Christian. Now thinking about all the stuff you think is nonsense about other world religions, or supernatural woo-woo…i.e. flying horses, magic undergarments, elephant headed, deities, snow flake fairies, space ponies, 72 vestal virgin reward in heaven for murder, pot’s of gold at the end of the rainbow….let your mind run amok with all the nonsense out there that human beings believe, have believed is true….now, insert the stuff described in your book of holy texts that millions of people believed were true and died to defend. You are where the atheist is at this point. Your nonsense is no more impressive to the rest of the non-Christian world than their nonsense is to you. It was just as bad in the first century, perhaps a lot worse, but those punters had a bit of an excuse, you, not so much.

          I know what ya want to push here, that the resurrection event was so convincing. So, what. It’s a propaganda story.

          http://www.unique-design.net/library/image/conspiracy/propaganda/public_enlightenment.jpg

          http://www.azquotes.com/picture-quotes/quote-a-lie-told-once-remains-a-lie-but-a-lie-told-a-thousand-times-becomes-the-truth-joseph-goebbels-70-50-03.jpg

          The “prophet” Joseph Smith convinced those around him that, what I am going to presume, you think was a lot of nonsense, was true. They converted to Mormonism. A few “claimed” to have seen the very golden tablets that Smith got the holy texts off. Newly converted Mormon’s were persecuted for converting. Some even dying in the process….why do you think they’d do that for such nonsense? Even Joseph Smith himself was persecuted and died for his beliefs. Now, one of two things. Smith was delusional and actually believed he’d been visited by angels to put him on the path of righteousness…or he was a fraudster that made the whole thing up good enough to get those around him to believe his alleged experience. Either way, you, I, and most other folk on the planet think it is a lot of nonsense. Yet Mormonism has enough clout to get believers in it’s truth value at a growing rate equal to Christianity.

          Is Mormonism a lot of nonsense? How could it get people as followers, under threat of persecution, from the get go, given it is nonsense? Answer that and you’ve answered yer own question. It’s called using ones brain.

        • Did you ask this question earlier? I missed it.

          If you’re asking why there are Christians, the answer is the same as “Why are there Mormons?” (or Muslims or Hindus or pretty much any other religion). They were raised that way. That’s right–Christians aren’t Christians because Christianity is correct (just like Hindus aren’t Hindus because Hinduism is correct). They were just raised that way.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ah, yes…the pious liar for Jesus finally drops the pretense. A full on fuckwit woo woo merchant, as if we didn’t already know. Ya were fooling no one here from the get-go. Now jog on, ya Dime Bar.

        • Pofarmer

          ur an idiot.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Thank you, that’s s very intelligent rebuttal.

        • Ignorant Amos

          It’s another observation that explains your contribution here so far.

        • MNb

          “You’ve been warned.”
          Ah, YHWH the Boogeyman Under My Bad.
          Now I’m supposed to be so scared that I convert.

        • Woody Feliciano

          That’s totally up to you.

        • MNb

          It’s up to me whether you scare me or not?!

        • Woody Feliciano

          Yeap

        • MNb

          Being well-informed or ill-informed doesn’t matter then? Or is that up to me as well?

        • Ignorant Amos
        • Ignorant Amos

          Isaiah 3:24 …. a fulfilled prophecy? Really?

        • Woody Feliciano

          Very well you tell me what he is describing in 3:24 if not the holocaust.

        • Ignorant Amos

          You are doing that thing that Christians do and taking a single verse completely out of it’s context. Commonly known as cherry picking.

          What does a bible study site say…..

          Verses 16-26: The arrogant and fashionable women of Jerusalem are condemned by the prophet for being more interested in the latest fads of fashion than the spiritual well-being of the nation. They are described as haughty, proud and wanton (suggestive). They walk with heads held high and with mincing steps, tinkling the bangles on their feet; they have flashing, seductive veils.

          Suits of apparel, or festal robes. Mantles, or tunic. Wimples, or cloaks. Glasses, or mirrors. Thus, the prophet predicts that the women of Judah will cease to delight in these feminine accessories and will perish with the men of Judah.

          ….

          Isaiah 3:24 “And it shall come to pass, [that] instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; [and] burning instead of beauty.”

          This is an explanation of exactly what comes from being a loose woman. Notice, the punishment from God fits the sin. God is righteous.

          http://www.bible-studys.org/Bible%20Books/Isaiah/Isaiah%20Chapter%203.html

  • Woody Feliciano

    I’ll ask one simple question if you can answer then maybe just maybe I’ll reconsider my faith, hows that? Eleven men and several women devote their lives to someone who was a fraud as you claim? After being crucified all but John ran scared. it was only after Jesus resurrection and his ascension did they get to work in taking the ” Gospel” to all the world. So here is my question; Why would 11 men go to all corners of the world knowing full well they would be killed if what as Luke says was fake: “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled[a] among us, 2 just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. 3 With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught” What you are espousing is that these 11 men would men would knowingly claim something they knew was false and were willing to die for that lie, a lie that they would in no way benefit?

    • MNb

      ” Why would 11 men go to all corners of the world ….”
      They didn’t. It took christianity 1500 years to reach the Americas and a few centuries more to reach Australia.

      “knowing full well they would be killed if what as Luke says was fake.”
      Why did thousands and thousands of Germans run to the Eastern Front knowing full well they would be killed if what as Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf about racial superiority was fake?
      Same answer.
      I’ll give you a chance to think it up yourself.

      x
      x
      x
      x
      x
      x
      x
      x
      x
      x

      Self deceit.
      Now let’s see if you are a man of your word with your “reconsider”. Amaze me – you would be the first.

      • Woody Feliciano

        The Germans you speak of were soldiers, they didn’t have a choice. While the 11 men didn’t reach the ” four corners” due to their deaths, the message did reach the entire world.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The German people followed Hitlers teachings well before the war even commenced. Volunteering to go to war was the culmination of fanaticism to Hitler. Many Nazi’s martyred themselves for Hitlers ideology….many Japanese did the same thing in the same war for their god.

          You are using the fallacy of argumentum ad martyrdom. It is an epic fail.

          https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Argumentum_ad_martyrdom

        • Woody Feliciano

          The fallacy is yours in comparing men of peace to soldiers. In Germany failure to “heil” Hitler was a death sentence. As for Japan they saw their Emperor as a God. My question remains unanswered.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The fallacy is yours in comparing men of peace to soldiers.

          Ah ha…the fallacy of the non sequitur combined with moving the goalposts. What has them being men of peace got to do with where and why they might find courage to proselytise the message?

          How do you know they were men of peace? We know absolutely diddly squat about them, bar what little is presented in some versions of the hearsay stories.

          In Germany failure to “heil” Hitler was a death sentence.

          Not when Hitler was rising to power in the 1930’s it wasn’t. And you are ignoring the point MNb was making. The Waffen SS were Hitler’s elite fanatics who were proud volunteers that went into battle singing marches, not because they were frightened of the the repercussions of defying their Fuhrer. They found courage in their conviction that they beliefed they were right and that Aryans were the master race. In other words, they died for a lie.

          As for Japan they saw their Emperor as a God.

          Exactly. So was he a God? No, of course he wasn’t, even though they believed he was, so they died for a lie.

          My question remains unanswered.

          Yeah….really, it has….people die for a lie all the time. The Islamic suicide terrorists of recent decades are testimony to that, unless you think they are all in Paradise with Allah and 72 virgins? No? Then they died for a lie.

        • MNb

          “In Germany failure to “heil” Hitler was a death sentence.”
          Not at all. Nobody was forced to enter the SS. Nobody was forced to serve in the death camps. Nobody was forced to join the Einsatzgruppe. Those volunteers were the racial fanatics.
          Thanks again for confirming my prejudices. You are not a man of your word.
          You rather make up cheap excuses and produce falsehoods than “reconsider”.

        • Woody Feliciano

          Remember the 11 were scared and cowering in a house, hiding for fear of their lives. Only after three days passed did they somehow find the courage to continue Christ’s missionary. So what happened that gave these men the courage?

        • Ignorant Amos

          Remember the 11 were scared and cowering in a house, hiding for fear of their lives. Only after three days passed did they somehow find the courage to continue Christ’s missionary.

          And where did you get that from? The story perchance? The story that was written decades after the alleged details were said to have occurred? Something the earliest Christian writer seems oblivious about, or thinks so insignificant that it isn’t noteworthy.

          There is nothing to verify any of this actually happened, it is a literary device in a story, you can’t use a story to verify the veracity of the details in that story. That is circular reasoning.

          So what happened that gave these men the courage?

          What do you think happened? That an executed dead man resurrected and walked among them? Is that what removed their fear and gave them the courage you claim? But that means they didn’t believe before that incident. Surely that can’t be right? Maybe it’s myth midrashed from the OT for a full effect. It’s a story that was embellished with each telling.

          Have you ever heard of the Luddite Martyrs? They died believing in the propaganda of General Ned Ludd.

          http://ludditebicentenary.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/where-were-west-yorkshire-luddite.html

          Ned Ludd was a fiction.

          http://modernnotion.com/ned-ludd-the-mythical-man-behind-the-luddite-movement-who-never-really-existed/

          Folk draw courage from all sorts of places, but first it must be demonstrated that there were actual people and they found courage where there was none before, and it’s not just a motif in a story. Then we can discuss the minutiae of how they got such conviction.

        • It’s a story, bro. It’s just words on paper.

        • Don’t give Hitler all the credit! Don’t forget that Martin Luther laid the groundwork for German antisemitism with his popular On the Jews and their Lies.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Oh of course. Luther laid the foundations. Which he got from the NT.

        • MNb

          The Waffen SS consisted of volunteers. They fought hardest, were most willing to die – so willing that Wehermacht generals complained.

        • And Mohammed’s message has reached the entire world as well. It’s expected to exceed Christianity by about 2070.

          You might want to tone down your claim that being a widespread message has any connection with its truth. People have believed lots of nutty stuff throughout history.

      • Woody Feliciano

        Self deceit is like saying the 11 men and several women all had the same hallucination. Ridiculous.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ridiculous

          Is it? Is it really? Or is it just that you might be incredulous?

          Consider the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_of_the_Sun

          Or mass UFO sightings….

          http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/chasing-ufos/articles/top-10-mass-sightings-of-ufos/

          Or the many testimonies of Nessie sightings by reputable sources including doctors, police officers, and clergy….

          http://www.lochnesssightings.com/index.asp?pageid=498361

          Human beings have a penchant for self deceit….even in groups.

        • And you can interview witnesses of UFO sightings (or personal encounters with aliens) today.

          Christians like to point to Jesus saying that he provided miracles as evidence … but what good is that? We don’t have that evidence; we have a story about evidence.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Aliens and their vehicles would not be supernatural either. Miracles, especially ones not available for testing, tend not to be not supernatural.

        • MNb

          Thanks for confirming my prejudices. You’re not a man of your word.

        • Self-deceit is reading a supernatural story and saying, “Yep, that sounds like history to me! Must’ve all happened just like that.” Ridiculous.

    • Ignorant Amos

      I’ll ask one simple question if you can answer then maybe just maybe I’ll reconsider my faith, hows that?

      Yeah…I doubt it, but anyway.

      Eleven men and several women devote their lives to someone who was a fraud as you claim?

      Who said they devoted their lives to someone…fraud, or not? That’s just the story.

      Even if they did devote their lives, the fact that they believed something to be true, doesn’t mean there was no fraud behind it.

      And by your logic, what does that mean for everyone that devotes their lives to someone? Think Islam, Mormonism, Scientology, etc.

      After being crucified all but John ran scared. it was only after Jesus resurrection and his ascension did they get to work in taking the ” Gospel” to all the world.

      That’s just one version of the story. You might want to research Christianity in the first four centuries. It wasn’t what you’ve been taught I’m guessing. And it was nothing like what it is today. Even the holy texts used by those Christians was wide and varied. The few being used today being only a tiny selection from those available.

      So here is my question; Why would 11 men go to all corners of the world knowing full well they would be killed if what as Luke says was fake: “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled[a] among us, 2 just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. 3 With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught”

      That’s just a story. But even so, how would they know full well they would be killed? Luke’s gospel was written after the eleven would be dead, the same with Matthews, most likely Marks, and most definitely John’s. So no one knows what the eleven, or whatever number, taught, if indeed they did teach anything. Which is doubtful.

      What you are espousing is that these 11 men would men would knowingly claim something they knew was false and were willing to die for that lie, a lie that they would in no way benefit?

      So much wrong here. Who said they knew it was false? Something can be false, yet you still believe it to be true. The history of humanity is full of folk who were prepared to die for a lie, the fact that they believed it to be true means nothing to the veracity of a claim. And get this, we don’t even know if the eleven died for their faith….all we have are tall tales, many are contradictory, about how characters in a story met their demise. What you are punting is the Naysayers Hypothesis. The owner of this blog has addressed the nonsense…

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/crossexamined?s=Naysayers+Hypothesis

    • Eleven men and several women devote their lives to someone who was a fraud as you claim?

      What’s surprising? You apparently devote your life to the story that someone was the son of God. The disciples did the same thing.

      Yes, I know that the story says that they lived with Jesus and saw miracles, but it’s just a story. Why take it as history?

      After being crucified all but John ran scared.

      Not really. After the arrest, “Then all the disciples deserted him and fled” (Matthew 26:56b).

      Why would 11 men go to all corners of the world knowing full well they would be killed if what as Luke says was fake

      1. Fake as in invented? Made-up? Fiction? I don’t say that it was invented; I say that it was legend. There’s a big difference. I don’t imagine a group of people in a smoky back room hatching a deliberate plan to fool people.

      2. How do you know that 11 men went out to spread the word? Show me that it’s history, not just a story. As for the “Who would die for a lie?” argument, I respond to that here:
      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/crossexamined/2015/01/who-would-die-for-a-lie-another-weak-christian-argument/

  • Nelis Volschenk

    I think the problems you’re facing are in fact just misinterpreting the verse (I’m not saying one can interpret away problems, I’m a scientist and therefore need to be truthful with the facts) and maybe not understanding the rest of the bible message (which will explain those verses). Ok let’s get started:

    Isa 52:15
    The verse is quoted in Rom 15:21 by Paul as a reason why he preaches the gospel. It can easily be understood that this is not necessarily referring to His earthly life but that kings and nations will come to know about him. I think we can all agree that for example Vincent Van Gogh is famous even though in his own lifetime most people completely disregarded him. How much more (if you believe the gospel accounts) can you say that Jesus is indeed famous since he is alive in Heaven when His name got spread all over the world.

    Isa 53:10
    “he will see his offspring and prolong his days,” – In the context of the previous verse this obviously means he will creceive many offspring (more on that later) and will have a long life (in fact Jesus is said to live eternally after his resurrection)
    “and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.” – This means that through Him the will of the Lord will be accomplished
    Take note that although a word for word translation is best for bible study we must not insist on hard line literalism like saying that the will of the Lord must physically prosper in the servant’s physical hand as that would not be how the author intended it, nor even how we read any other text such as Shakespeare etc.

    Isa 53:11
    Actually Jesus came to be exactly that (a servant) (Phil 2:7). 1 Cor 11:3 repeats this fact that God [the Father] is the head of Christ [the son]. In Christian theology there is no problem with God the Father being the head of the Trinity and Jesus being in subordination to Him (John 6:38, John 14:28, 1 Cor 15:28 and LOTS more). I’m not going to explain the trinity here but there is a heirarchy of sorts just as there is a heirarchy in marriage even though man and wife become one flesh and are both equal. Submission is no problem in a relationship of perfect love

    Isa 53:12
    In fact this is emphasised many times in the new testament. We are joint heirs with Christ (Rom 8:17), He will be the firstborn among many brethren (Rom 8:29), We become sons of God (previously humans were only made in the image of God, the difference between image and son is a major biblical theme and cardinal to understanding the redemption story) (Gal 3:26). So yes Jesus is just one of many who inherit the new world, but He is the firstborn son and the cornerstone of the house etc.

    Hope this helps

    • Greg G.

      How much more (if you believe the gospel accounts) can you say that Jesus is indeed famous since he is alive in Heaven when His name got spread all over the world.

      But why should we believe the gospel accounts? We can see parallels in the gospels with the literature of the day, from the Homeric epics, to Old Testament stories, to blending in some of the epistles. They are a fictional amalgamation of fictional literature.

      If we do not read the gospels into the early epistles, we see that those early epistles say nothing about Jesus except what is found in the Old Testament. Read Isaiah 53 and Zechariah 3. Isaiah says the Suffering Servant died, was buried, and now intercedes for sins. Septuagint Zechariah has somebody appearing before God in dirty clothes, like he had been buried, who gets cleaned up and is told by the Lord of hosts of removing the guilt of this land in a single day. Throw in a few other verses from the prophets, like Hosea 6:2 for the rising on the third day, and you can create a Jesus from the scripture. All one needs are oppressed, desperate people longing for their own ruler promised by their scripture to start believing the Messiah would come during their generation and finding excuses in the scriptures to believe it was going to happen for them.

      Ephesians 3:5 (NRSV)5 In former generations this mystery was not made known to humankind, as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit:

      Ephesians 3:5 shows that the early Christians thought it was significant that it was revealed to their generation and not before. That explains why Paul always uses the first person plural for those who will be alive in his eschatology verses and the third person plural for the dead.

      The epistle Christians didn’t know about a first century Jesus, they were reading Isaiah 53 as history about someone who lived in or before Isaiah’s time.

      But it wasn’t just the early Christians who were expecting the Messiah, or maybe the early Christians were a major sect among the Jews. Josephus writes that when Jerusalem was under seige from the Romans, the leaders would fire them up by reminding them that God was going to deliver them:

      Jewish War 6.5.2 (6.286-287)
      Now there was then a great number of false prophets suborned by the tyrants to impose on the people, who denounced this to them, that they should wait for deliverance from God; and this was in order to keep them from deserting, and that they might be buoyed up above fear and care by such hopes. Now a man that is in adversity does easily comply with such promises; for when such a seducer makes him believe that he shall be delivered from those miseries which oppress him, then it is that the patient is full of hopes of such his deliverance.

      Jewish War 6.5.4 (6.312-313)
      But now, what did the most elevate them in undertaking this war, was an ambiguous oracle that was also found in their sacred writings, how, “about that time, one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth.” The Jews took this prediction to belong to themselves in particular, and many of the wise men were thereby deceived in their determination.

      The ambiguous oracle was probably:

      Testament of Judah 24:1–6
      And after these things shall a Star arise to you from Jacob in peace, and a Man shall rise from my seed, like the Sun of righteousness, walking with the sons of men in meekness and righteousness, and no sin shall be found in Him. And the heavens shall be opened above Him, to shed forth the blessing of the Spirit from the Holy Father; and He shall shed forth a spirit of grace upon you, and ye shall be unto Him sons in truth, and ye shall walk in His commandments, the first and the last. This is the Branch of God Most High, and this the Well-spring unto life for all flesh. Then shall the sceptre of my kingdom shine forth, and from your root shall arise a stem; and in it shall arise a rod of righteousness to the Gentiles, to judge and to save all that call upon the Lord.

      That passage draws on Numbers 24:17-19, Joel 2:28-29, Isaiah 11:1-5, Jeremiah 23:5, and Zechariah 3:8.

      In the environment where so many Jews were willing to fight to the death in belief in the coming Messiah, all we need is one sect that believed the Messiah had once lived, died, and was resurrected at some point in the past. You don’t need a real Jesus for that, just old scriptures.

      • Nelis Volschenk

        Forgive me if I’m misunderstanding but it seems you do not believe that Jesus was a real historical figure and that the gospels are fictional.
        I don’t think this is the correct place for that particular discussion as a good debate should always have clear boundaries. (I will nevertheless answer your post)

        The OP compared the prophecy in Isa 52:13 – 53:12 to Jesus as portrayed by the gospels. Let me prove this claim:
        Since a prophecy can only be considered to have failed when either the time set by the prophecy has passed and it has not occured or the events described by the prophecy have indeed occured but certain parts of the prophecy do not agree with the actual events and this specific prophecy doesn’t predict the time of the events we can conclude that the OP was indeed referring to an event that has already taken place. We can further see from:

        Too bad this isn’t how the gospel story plays out.
        Again, this bears no resemblance to the Jesus of the gospels.

        that the events the OP compared the prophecy to were the events as recorded by the gospels.
        If you disagree with the OP’s position regarding the gospels and historic Jesus (This might not even be his actual view – I somehow get the idea that the OP only assumed this point of view to make a point about the use of Isaiah 53 for apologetic purposes, nevertheless we should honor that point of view and keep the discussion within those boundaries) I think it would be more appropriate to make a new reply to the OP’s post and present evidence for your case.

        Now debating ethics aside.
        First let us consider the manuscript evidence for the new testament:
        I wish to make clear that I’m not an ancient historian or new testament scholar, I’m a chemical engineer and as such if I make a mistake in this section I’ll be happy to accept correction (with suitable proofs of course)
        We should note that when an ancient manuscript is found it should be considered valid unless sufficient evidence exists to the contrary. For example had one of the gospel writers said that Plato didn’t exist we could conclude that that claim is false and of course the rest of the manuscript might in part or entirety be false. However the burden of proof is always on those who wish to dispute the veracity of said manuscript, just like a $100 bill is assumed to be valid unless otherwise proven.

        There are about 5800 Greek manuscripts of the new testament in existance and a further 19 000 in other languages with the earliest manuscript in that collection being P52 (circa A.D. 125) and the original written circa A.D. 96 that is about 30 years after the original. Compare this with the next best ancient manuscript evidence which is Iliad by Homer (circa B.C. 900) for which I believe we have about 1800 manuscripts with the earliest being from circa B.C 400. We can see that the new testament has by far the best manuscript evidence of all ancient texts.
        Granted most of those manuscripts come from after the 9th century with only about 124 dated to the first 300 years, however we find an amazing 99.5% internal consistancy between all Greek new testament manuscripts. The first complete new testament (Codex Siniaticus circa A.D 350) is still only about 320 years after the crucifixion and 250 years after the last writing in that collection.
        It is undisputed that the new testament is the ancient work for which the best manuscript evidence exists by a country mile. This however is not the only evidence for a historic Jesus.

        From Tacitus we can get the following facts about Jesus
        1) There was a historic figure called Christ
        2) He was crucified by order of the Roman Prefect Pontius Pilate
        3) There was a movement named after this person
        4) This movement had it’s origins in Judea

        Josephus also mentions Jesus in both book 18 and 20 of Jewish Antiquities. Few scholars doubt the veracity of the passage in book 20, however there is clear evidence that the statement in book 18 was tampered with (probably by a Christian).
        We can from book 20 get the following facts about Jesus:
        1) Jesus was a historic figure
        2) He was called the Messiah (hebrew for Christ)
        3) He had a brother named James

        When the passage called the Testimonium Flavianum from book 18 is dechristianized we can (with a small amount of doubt) add the following facts to Jesus.
        1) He won over many Jews and Greeks
        2) Jewish leaders of the day expressed unfavourable opinions of Him.
        3) Christians got their name from Him

        We can see that all of these sources (although sparce as most ancient sources are) agree with the gospel accounts. We also find that no pagans or Jews of the day ever denied Jesus’ existence instead the rabbi’s used the real events of Jesus’ life to try prove that His teachings should not be followed.

        Now for your statements:

        They are a fictional amalgamation of fictional literature.

        This is a statement made without any substantiating evidence. We have evidence to prove at least some of the gospel claims as fact and the rest is from the best ancient manuscript evidence we have.

        If we do not read the gospels into the early epistles, we see that those early epistles say nothing about Jesus except what is found in the Old Testament

        To the contrary: 1 Thessalonians and Galatians are probably the earliest works in the new testament. Ill just cover the first chapter of each book.

        1 Thess:
        v1: Jesus Christ called Lord (literally master, used all through the new testament as reference to God)
        Also named seperate from God the father
        v2-8: Historical details and mention of the Holy Spirit
        v9-10:Jesus called the Son of God who was raised from the dead, will return from heaven (implying His ascension) and who saves them from the judgement that is to come.

        This is in perfect agreement with the gospels, and has details that are obscure in the Tanakh (old testament)

        Gal:
        v2: Jesus Christ and God the Father once again differentiated
        Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father
        v4 Jesus reported as giving Himself for the sins of others and so doing performed the will of God the Father
        v12 This message was given to Paul by personal message from Jesus.
        v18 Paul meets Peter (one of the 12 in the gospels)
        v19 Paul also saw Jesus’ brother named James (once again found in the gospels)

        These are once again ideas which are not easily found in the Tanakh and were certainly not to be found in Jewish thinking of the day.

        I will agree that a lot of the gospels can be reconstructed from the Tanakh, this is exactly why Christians refer to those prophecies as fulfilled in Christ, argueing this point and expecting me to oppose it is creating a strawman. I do however oppose the idea that the epistles refer to a figure pre 1st century and I believe i have given sufficient proof that that is false.

  • @Nelis Volschenk :

    (Your reply to @Greg G. didn’t seem to come through. Here it is.)

    Forgive me if I’m misunderstanding but it seems you do not believe that Jesus was a real historical figure and that the gospels are fictional.
    I don’t think this is the correct place for that particular discussion as a good debate should always have clear boundaries. (I will nevertheless answer your post)
    The OP compared the prophecy in Isa 52:13 – 53:12 to Jesus as portrayed by the gospels. Let me prove this claim:
    Since a prophecy can only be considered to have failed when either the time set by the prophecy has passed and it has not occured or the events described by the prophecy have indeed occured but certain parts of the prophecy do not agree with the actual events and this specific prophecy doesn’t predict the time of the events we can conclude that the OP was indeed referring to an event that has already taken place. We can further see from:
    Too bad this isn’t how the gospel story plays out.
    Again, this bears no resemblance to the Jesus of the gospels.
    that the events the OP compared the prophecy to were the events as recorded by the gospels.
    If you disagree with the OP’s position regarding the gospels and historic Jesus (This might not even be his actual view – I somehow get the idea that the OP only assumed this point of view to make a point about the use of Isaiah 53 for apologetic purposes, nevertheless we should honor that point of view and keep the discussion within those boundaries) I think it would be more appropriate to make a new reply to the OP’s post and present evidence for your case.
    Now debating ethics aside.
    First let us consider the manuscript evidence for the new testament:
    I wish to make clear that I’m not an ancient historian or new testament scholar, I’m a chemical engineer and as such if I make a mistake in this section I’ll be happy to accept correction (with suitable proofs of course)
    We should note that when an ancient manu script is found it should be considered valid unless sufficient evidence exists to the contrary. For example had one of the gospel writers said that Plato didn’t exist we could conclude that that claim is false and of course the rest of the manuscript might in part or entirety be false. However the burden of proof is always on those who wish to dispute the veracity of said manuscript, just like a $100 bill is assumed to be valid unless otherwise proven.
    There are about 5800 greek manuscripts of the new testament in existance and a further 19 000 in other languages with the earliest manuscript in that collection being P52 (circa A.D. 125) and the original written circa A.D. 96 that is about 30 years after the original. Compare this with the next best ancient manuscript evid ence which is Iliad by Homer (circa B.C. 900) for which I believe we have about 1800 manuscripts with the earliest being from circa B.C 400. We can see that the new testament has by far the best manuscript evidence of all ancient texts.
    Granted most of those manuscripts come from after the 9th century with only about 124 dated to the first 300 years, however we find an amazing 99.5% internal consistancy between all Greek new testament manuscripts. The first complete new testament (Codex Siniaticus circa A.D 350) is still only about 320 years after the crucifixion and 250 years after the last writing in that collection.
    It is undisputed that the new testament is the ancient work for which the best manuscript evidence exists by a country mile. This however is not the only evidence for a historic Jesus.
    From Tacitus we can get the following facts about Jesus
    1) There was a historic figure called Christ
    2) He was crucified by order of the Roman Prefect Pontius Pilate
    3) There was a movement named after this person
    4) This movement had it’s origins in Judea
    Josephus also mentions Jesus in both book 18 and 20 of Jewish Antiquities. Few scholars doubt the veracity of the passage in book 20, however there is clear evidence that the statement in book 18 was tampered with (probably by a Christian).
    We can from book 20 get the following facts about Jesus:
    1) Jesus was a historic figure
    2) He was called the Messiah (hebrew for Christ)
    3) He had a brother named James
    When the passage called the Testimonium Flavianum from book 18 is dechristianized we can (with a small amount of doubt) add the following facts to Jesus.
    1) He won over many Jews and Greeks
    2) Jewish leaders of the day expressed unfavourable opinions of Him.
    3) Christians got their name from Him
    We can see that all of these sources (although sparce as most ancient sources are) agree with the gospel accounts. We also find that no pagans or Jews of the day ever denied Jesus’ existence instead the rabbi’s used the real events of Jesus’ life to try prove that His teachings should not be f ollowed.
    Now for your statements:
    They are a fictional amalgamation of fictional literature.
    This is a statement made without any substantiating evidence. We have evidence to prove at least some of the gospel claims as fact and the rest is from the best ancient manuscript evidence we have of any writing.
    If we do not read the gospels into the early epistles, we see that those early epistles say nothing about Jesus except what is found in the Old Testament
    To the contrary: 1 Thessalonians and Galatians probably the earliest works in the new testament. Ill just cover the first chapter of each book.
    1 Thess:
    v1: Jesus Christ called Lord (literally master, used all through the new testament as refere nce to God)
    Also named seperate from God the father
    v2-8: Historical details and mention of the Holy Spirit
    v9-10:Jesus called the Son of God who was raised from the dead, will return from heaven (implying His ascension) and who saves them from the judgement that is to come.
    This is in perfect agreement with the gospels, and has details that are obscure in the Tanakh (old testament)
    Gal:
    v2: Jesus Christ and God the Father once again differentiated
    Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father
    v4 Jesus reported as givi ng Himself for the sins of others and so doing performed the will of God the Father
    v12 This message was given to Paul by personal message from Jesus.
    v18 Paul meets Peter (one of the 12 in the gospels)
    v19 Paul also saw Jesus’ brother named James (once again found in the gospels)
    These are once again ideas which are not easily found in the Tanakh and were certainly not to be found in Jewish thinking of the day.
    I will agree that a lot of the gospels can be reconstructed from the Tanakh, this is exactly why Christians refer to those prophecies as f ulfilled in Christ, argueing this point and expecting me to oppose it is creating a strawman. I do however oppose the idea that the epistles refer to a figure pre 1st century and I believe i have given sufficient proof that that is false.

    • Greg G.

      I got the email notification but it wasn’t there when I was getting ready to reply. His first post says it is awaiting moderation and there is now no Reply option. Obviously that has changed since I last saw it. Neither post is shown in his Disqus profile.

    • Greg G.

      @Nelis Volschenk :

      Since a prophecy can only be considered to have failed when either the time set by the prophecy has passed and it has not occured or the events described by the prophecy have indeed occured but certain parts of the prophecy do not agree with the actual events and this specific prophecy doesn’t predict the time of the events we can conclude that the OP was indeed referring to an event that has already taken place.

      For a prophecy to be a prophecy, it has to be a prophecy and not just appear to be one because someone wrote a fictional story around it centuries later.

      If you disagree with the OP’s position regarding the gospels and historic Jesus (This might not even be his actual view – I somehow get the idea that the OP only assumed this point of view to make a point about the use of Isaiah 53 for apologetic purposes, nevertheless we should honor that point of view and keep the discussion within those boundaries) I think it would be more appropriate to make a new reply to the OP’s post and present evidence for your case.

      Some Christians do try to make the case. Bob tackles arguments made by Christians even though there is hardly any claim that all Christians would support.

      I think that the original Christianity was created from Old Testament passages and relied heavily on the Suffering Servant passages but the gospels draw from a wider collection of sources. The Messianic Jews of the first century expected the Messiah any day. I think the early Christians who were a sect of Messianic Jews who read the Suffering Servant as a historical hidden mystery who had lived, died, and was resurrected. They appear to have got the name Jesus from the LXX version of Zechariah 3. Paul seems to have invented the death by crucifixion from the verses he presents in Galatians 3:6-14 and that the Jewish law no longer had to be followed. His “more Jewish” fellow Christians failed to appreciate that. I am interested in what the Messianic Jews of the day thought and how similar they were to the Jerusalem Christians.

      I do not think the gospels are as directly dependent on the Suffering Servant as the early epistles.

      I wish to make clear that I’m not an ancient historian or new testament scholar, I’m a chemical engineer and as such if I make a mistake in this section I’ll be happy to accept correction (with suitable proofs of course)

      Of course. I am an amateur at this, too, and I have a background in electrical engineering.

      We should note that when an ancient manu script is found it should be considered valid unless sufficient evidence exists to the contrary. For example had one of the gospel writers said that Plato didn’t exist we could conclude that that claim is false and of course the rest of the manuscript might in part or entirety be false. However the burden of proof is always on those who wish to dispute the veracity of said manuscript, just like a $100 bill is assumed to be valid unless otherwise proven.

      We should never do that. We should consider the sources and keep in mind that the author may have had his own prejudices. We shouldn’t accept $100 bills without an inspection of the security features, either.

      It is undisputed that the new testament is the ancient work for which the best manuscript evidence exists by a country mile. This however is not the only evidence for a historic Jesus.

      Granted but we have evidence that Homer’s writings existed before the original NT manuscripts were written but we do not assume The Odyssey is a true story for that reason.

      We still have manuscript evidence and textual evidence of alterations to the text of the documents, and evidence that several NT documents are late forgeries. But even if the early forgeries can give us a clue about early Christian thought and the late forgeries can tell us about later Christian ideas.

      I think the existing manuscripts are close enough to the originals as to not matter that much and since the originals were false and fiction, the alterations are hardly meaningful.

      From Tacitus we can get the following facts about Jesus

      IINM, Tacitus wrote in Latin but he calls Pilate a procurator. Josephus says that the position was changed to procurator a few years after Pilate was removed. There was a debate about whether Pilate was a prefect or a procurator until the Pilate Stone was found to say he was a prefect. (Many Christians argue that there was a debate of whether Pilate existed but never cite such a claim. He is mentioned by Josephus and Philo so his existence was accepted, only his title was debated.) But if Tacitus was using Roman records, he should have known that Pilate was a prefect. So, it seems that he was taking the word of Christians who got their information from the gospels. That is the problem with pretty much every extra-biblical mention of Jesus.

      As for the Testimonium Flavianum, Origen never mentioned it. It is inconceivable that he would not have mentioned it in Contra Celsus 1.47 when he is using the John the Baptist passage and the James passage. The TF is now found a few paragraphs before the John the Baptist part. If it was there in any form, Origen should have mentioned it.

      The Coincidences of the Emmaus Narrative of Luke and the Testimonium of Josephus [Link] by Gary J. Goldberg, Ph.D. makes a good argument that when the Christian add-ons are removed, the base text that is thought to be original is amazingly similar to the Emmaus Road narrative in Luke 24. Goldberg considers three possibilities:

      1. That is mere coincidence. Goldberg rejects that because of the density and specifity of the similarities.
      2. That is was copied into Antiquities. Goldberg rejects that because he doubts that anyone back then could imitate Josephus’ style so well.
      3. That Luke and Josephus used a common source. He accepts this as the explanation.

      But the Emmaus Road narrative is a summary of the story of Luke, which is based on Mark, directly and indirectly, and Mark has nothing that matches the TF like that. So we should reject that explanation, as well.

      The Testimonium Flavianum, Eusebius, and Consensus [Link] by Ken Olson shows that Eusebius used many Josephus phrases in his own writings, and some of those phrases are also used in the TF, both in the parts thought to be Christian embellishment and the part thought to be original. That eliminates Goldberg’s objection to the second possibility. Nobody noticed the TF until Eusebius brought it up. He has been accused of forging the TF for centuries. His copy of Antiquities of the Jews was either the same manuscript that Origen used or a copy made from it. Origen of Caesarea bequeathed his library to the city. Pamphilus of Caesarea became the curator of the library and later became the mentor of Origen of Caesarea. The evidence indicates that the TF is a forgery and we even know who is guilty of it.

      As far as the James passage goes, there were many called “Christs”. He may have been the James referred to in Galatians as “the brother of the Lord”. But without the Testimonium Flavianum, it would be rather meaningless to anyone but a Christian when Josephus wrote, so I think it may have been a margin note that had been “penciled” in by a Christian who owned the manuscript that Origen’s came from.

      To the contrary: 1 Thessalonians and Galatians probably the earliest works in the new testament. Ill just cover the first chapter of each book.

      I think the author of Mark relied most heavily on Galatians, more than other Christian writings.

      1 Thess:
      v1: Jesus Christ called Lord (literally master, used all through the new testament as refere nce to God)
      Also named seperate from God the father
      v2-8: Historical details and mention of the Holy Spirit
      v9-10:Jesus called the Son of God who was raised from the dead, will return from heaven (implying His ascension) and who saves them from the judgement that is to come.

      All of that can be derived from OT passages. Isaiah 53 says the SS died, was buried, and intercessed for sins, which implies a resurrection. Zechariah 3 supports the resurrected Jesus and the elimination of sins. But none of that says it happened in the first century.

      Gal:
      v2: Jesus Christ and God the Father once again differentiated
      Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father
      v4 Jesus reported as givi ng Himself for the sins of others and so doing performed the will of God the Father
      v12 This message was given to Paul by personal message from Jesus.
      v18 Paul meets Peter (one of the 12 in the gospels)
      v19 Paul also saw Jesus’ brother named James (once again found in the gospels)

      Notice that Paul opens the letter in an unusual fashion, ranting about being sent by the Lord, not by human authority. In Gal 1:11-12, he insists that his knowledge is not from human authority. Check out Gal 5:11-12 where he thinks the circumcisers should castrate themselves instead of mere circumcision. That is extreme sarcasm toward the circumcisors. Who are the circumcisors? That is in Gal 2:11-12 where Paul points out that James sends agents of the circumcision faction under his “human authority”. So when Paul calls James “the Lord’s brother,” he is sarcastically pointing out that he uses human authority to do what the Lord does.

      In 1 Corinthians 9, around verse 5, we see Paul arguing that workers for the Lord should be paid, as if someone had suggested to the Corinthians that they should stop supporting him financially. He compares what the other evangelists do, like Cephas travels with a wife, while Paul does not. In verse 5, he mentions “the brothers of the Lord” and in verse 8 he brings up that he is not saying this on human authority, which implies that what the others are saying is said on human authority. So when Paul calls someone “the Lord’s brother”, he is sarcastically saying that they using human authority in place of what he considers to be the Lord’s position. Not that Paul isn’t sometimes hypocritical about it at times.

      I do however oppose the idea that the epistles refer to a figure pre 1st century and I believe i have given sufficient proof that that is false.

      We haven’t even gotten into how Paul spent a couple of weeks with Cephas and met James, yet he thinks his knowledge is not inferior to the knowledge of the “super-apostles.” It is unlikely that Peter and James would have failed to mention that they learned directly from Jesus so Paul would have to concede that his knowledge was inferior if that had happened. Paul doesn’t claim that his knowledge is superior, either. He respects them enough to say they have equal knowledge, ergo, from reading the texts.

      Paul uses “Jesus”, “Christ”, and either combination about once for every five verses but mostly it homage to Jesus in heaven. Here are things Paul actually says about Jesus in his “authentic” letters, where he says it, and possible sources in the OT. It shows that when Paul says he got his information from the scriptures, we can believe that:

      Past
      Descended from David > Romans 1:3, Romans 15:12* > 2 Samuel 7:12, Isaiah 11:10*
      Declared Son of God > Romans 1:4 > Psalm 2:7
      Made of woman, > Galatians 4:4 > Isaiah 7:14, Isaiah 49:1, Isaiah 49:5
      Made under the law > Galatians 4:4, Galatians 3:10-12* > Deuteronomy 27:26*, Habakkuk 2:4*, Leviticus 18:5*
      Was rich, became poor > 2 Corinthians 8:9 > Zechariah 9:9
      Was meek and gentle > 2 Corinthians 10:1 > Isaiah 53:7
      Did not please himself > Romans 15:3* > Psalm 69:9*
      Became a servant of the circumcised > Romans 15:8 > Isaiah 53:11
      For the Gentiles > Romans 15:9-12* > Psalm 18:49*, 2 Samuel 22:50*, Deuteronomy 32:43*, Psalm 117:1*, Isaiah 11:10*

      Was betrayed > 1 Corinthians 11:23 > Psalm 41:9
      Took loaf of bread and wine > 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 > Psalm 41:9, Exodus 24:8, Leviticus 17:11, Isaiah 53:12 (“wine” = “blood of grapes” allusions in Genesis 49:11, Deuteronomy 32:14, Isaiah 49:26, Zechariah 9:15)

      Was crucified > 1 Corinthians 2:2, 2 Corinthians 13:4, Galatians 3:13* > Deuteronomy 21:23*
      Died for sins > 1 Corinthians 15:3, Galatians 2:20 > Isaiah 53:5, Isaiah 53:12
      Was buried > 1 Corinthians 15:4 > Isaiah 53:9
      Was raised > Romans 1:4, Romans 8:34, 1 Corinthians 15:4, 2 Corinthians 4:14, 2 Corinthians 13:4 > Hosea 6:2, Psalm 16:10, Psalm 41:10

      Present
      Sits next to God > Romans 8:34 > Psalm 110:1, Psalm 110:5
      Intercedes > Romans 8:34 > Isaiah 53:12

      Future
      Will come > 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17, 1 Corinthians 15:51-54*, Philippians 3:20-21 > Isaiah 26:19-21, Daniel 7:11, Daniel 7:13; Daniel 12:2, Isaiah 25:8*

      (* indicates that New Testament passage contains a direct quote from the Old Testament)

      1 Corinthians 11:23-25 appears to be part of an interpolation.

  • @Nelis Volschenk :

    My reply to your comment to @Greg G.

    There are about 5800 greek manuscripts of the new testament in existance and a further 19 000 in other languages with the earliest manuscript in that collection being P52 (circa A.D. 125) and the original written circa A.D. 96 that is about 30 years after the original. Compare this with the next best ancient manuscript evidence which is Iliad by Homer (circa B.C. 900) for which I believe we have about 1800 manuscripts with the earliest being from circa B.C 400. We can see that the new testament has by far the best manuscript evidence of all ancient texts.

    I’ve written on these two arguments: the number of New Testament manuscripts + the time delta from autograph to our best copies. See the links below. (Spoiler: neither one is a win for Christianity.)

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/crossexamined/2016/08/how-long-from-original-new-testament-books-to-oldest-copies-bible-reliability/
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/crossexamined/2017/03/25000-new-testament-manuscripts-big-deal-2/