Did Jesus Exist? Ehrman’s Complete Failure – Part 3

The Independence of Passages vs. BooksAmong the seven "independent" Gospels to which Ehrman's ABSIG (Agreements Between Seven Independent Gospels) refer are the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Mark.A "basic aspect" of the life or death of Jesus is the claim that Jesus was crucified by the Romans.  There is agreement between Matthew and Mark on this "basic aspect":And they [the soldiers] crucified him [Jesus], and divided his clothes among them, casting lots to decide what each s … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exist? Ehrman’s Complete Failure – Part 2

Existence vs. Basic Aspects/Attributes"Did Jesus exist?" - What does this question mean?Clarity is a gateway standard of critical thinking.  If you are UNCLEAR about the meaning of a question, then your thinking about that question will also be unclear, and your thinking will probably not be very useful or productive or logical so long as you remain UNCLEAR about the question at issue.On the one hand, it is certain that there was no Jewish man who lived in Palestine in the first cent … [Read more...]

Did Jesus Exist? Ehrman’s Complete Failure – Part 1

I was recently asked to participate in a public discussion/debate about the question "Did Jesus Exist?".  I don't plan to argue in favor of the mythicist position, just because I don't think I would do it justice.  I'm not a mythicist, and I have not studied any mythicists in recent years (I read some of G.A. Wells books years ago, and I read Earl Doherty's The Jesus Puzzle some years ago).  But I do have significant doubts about the existence of Jesus, and especially about the strength of the hi … [Read more...]

What is Christianity? Part 13

Worldview as a Way of Life?The third objection that James Sire raises against his older conception of worldviews, is that it makes more sense to understand a worldview as being “a way of life” (NTE, p.97) rather than to understand a worldview as being “a system of thought” (NTE, p.98) because of “the practical, lived reality of worldviews…” (NTE, p.100).The sub-section of Chapter 5 where Sire presents this third objection is called “Worldview as a Way of Life” (NTE, p.98-100).  The first … [Read more...]

The Resurrection: Types of Skeptical Views

The traditional Christian view of the resurrection of Jesus involves a number of beliefs or claims:Jesus existed. Jesus was crucified. Jesus died while he was on the cross. After he was crucified, Jesus was buried in a stone tomb in the evening on the day that he was crucified. The stone tomb where Jesus was buried (on the day that he was crucified) was empty on Sunday morning, about 48 hours after Jesus was crucified. On Sunday, about 48 hours after Jesus was crucified, some of … [Read more...]

William Lane Craig Endorses My Argument from Scale against Theism!

He doesn't mention by name, of course, and may not have even had my argument in mind, but the sort of Bayesian considerations he raises support my Bayesian argument from scale, in two ways. First, he agrees with me about the "direction" the evidence points (against theism). Second, he agrees with me about the "magnitude" of that evidential support (very weak). (The words "direction" and "magnitude" are not Craig's words, but were inspired by David Schum, who pointed out long ago that evidence … [Read more...]

Apologist Responds? Check. Uncharitable? Check. Uses Cheap Shots and Insults? Check.

I stopped reading Triablogue some time ago, but today I decided to make an exception. After I posted my comment about the twin hypothesis, I thought to myself, "I'll bet Steve Hays responds to this and uses the 'Village Atheist' tag." My prediction was accurate. (See his post here.)In my comment, I didn't defend the twin hypothesis. I didn't even lay out Cavin's case for the Twin hypothesis in his Ph.D. dissertation. All I did was define the hypothesis in order to prove the point that R … [Read more...]

Adamson’s Cru[de] Arguments for God – Part 5

Cosmic pluralism, the plurality of worlds, or simply pluralism, describes the philosophical belief in numerous "worlds" in addition to Earth (possibly an infinite number), which may harbour extraterrestrial life.   (from Wikipedia article "Cosmic Pluralism")In my criticism of Adamson's initial argument for the existence of God, I pointed out that cosmic pluralism is an idea that has been around since the beginning of Western philosophy about 2,500 years ago (the pre-socratic philosopher An … [Read more...]