Saturday, July 24, 2010

Weird Stuff People Say on Youtube

What you are about to read is a recording of a dialogue I recently had with a fellow on Youtube named "paisleyatlarge." This is just an example of how Youtube acts as an internet ignorance aggregator. His assertions obviously have no merit to them whatsoever, but I wanted to toy around with this fellow a bit to see what kind of utter nonsense he would spout. Here are his initial comments (with my initial rebuttals):

There was an apparition of jesus a few years ago, His face miraculously appeared on a wall of an old abandoned gas station down in Mexico. The devout came from far and near, prayed, sang, lit candles, incense, made dedications, promises, and had vigils. One evening a man went up to the magic image and rubbed it with his finger. Some of the white wash came off, and revealed that underneath was an old poster advertising a Willie Nelson concert.

An Interesting anecdote, but says nothing at all about the truth or falsity of the Christian faith.

Mormonism, xtianity, they are all man-made. xtianity was made up on command of Constantine by the council of Nicea, and did not exist before then. It was all made up including the story of jesus. You can study the historic evidence yourself, if you look up legitimate historians rather than xtian apologists.

Can you please explain to me the writings of such the ante-Nicene Fathers such as Clement of Rome, Papias, Ignatius of Antioch, Justin Martyr, Melito of Sardis, Irenaeus of Lyons, Tertullian, Cyprian of Carthage, etc. who all taught what Christians today believe long before Constantine came along?

His response to my initial comments (with my rebuttals):

The very popular gnostic ideas of "christos" goes back at least til 200bce but was not what people think of today as "christ" (un-bodied spirit). The closest ideas were possibly Ireneus, because he was the most irrascibly aggressive, his ideas gained ground. The teachings of Marcion, original fragments of "Mark" there was IS CHRESTOS, (IS later changed to IES or IESU, jesus, no "j" in alphbet then, and CHRESTOS (good, helpful, useful) rather than CHRISTOS (annointed).

What "original" fragments of Mark are you talking about. The oldest manuscripts of Mark that we have are widely available (they can be viewed online at and they read nothing like what you just claimed.

IS CHRESTOS wasn't born, was sort of a 'ghost' that appeared to save us from god (jehovah) who created all the material world, was less skilful, bad actally, than the new unknown god of love IS. Marcion also edited the letters of Apollonius into being the letters of 'paul', to create the first xtian scriptures (as well as fleshing out the myth of jesus with the life of Apollonius). For all his trouble, he was excommunicated by the Romans, but they kept his book, was all they had!

Although it is true that Apollonius lived around the same time as Paul and the NT writers, the main body of Apollonian belief didn't develop until centuries later, and did so as a response to the spread of Chrsitianity. So if any borrowing took place, it would actually have been the other way around. Not only that, but I defy you to provide me with any credible historical source that says Paul's letters were originally Apollonius'.

Eusebius changed Marcions scriptures to IES (jesus) to attract the popular joshua cults, to CHRISTOS to draw in remaining gnostic, therapeuts & essenes, the astrotheological aspects of Egypt, etc. for the pagans, to create the myth to unify the nation. That was way too little space for not nearly enough info, no room to reference, so only a VERY bare skeleton. I hate to do that. Really, you or anyone else can study this on your own, the catholic encyclpdia online's a good source. And with a humble heart I gratefully give you most profound thanks for being so kind and astute to not mention "The Antiquities of the Jew", by Josephus.

Are you relying on the primary sources or what some secondary source tells you? These patristic writers' sources are available online ( I've read them myself, and the reality there is nothing like what you just claimed.

But I'm on a roll... the "pre-nicene fathers" are naturally very important for the church which tries desperately to draw a tenuous thread between them even back to 'polycarp' who was supposed to know 'peter', trying to produce history for their version of christ, who with all he was supposed to have said and done, acclaimed to have been so widely known, not a single contemporary historian of his area even mentions him by name. Nor paul. Pre-Nicene fathers believed a hodgpodge.

That's a lot of assertions, but nothing that I can find from any credible historical source. Got any citations to back those up?

The third wave of assertions and rebuttals:

Apollonius biography of his VERY LONG and fruitful life wasn't written until around 200 (I think) and is the longest biography written of an historical person of that period. Have you read it? Surely it is not totally historical or factual, a good book, but reeks of the fabulous, and Damis is the "gullible" foil for Pol's wisdom. His legends were known far and wide, to the point of apotheosis, his temple was in Tyana, and his legend, 'beliefs' developed after he died.

I don't question that there was a historical figure named Apollonius. However, I do find it rather telling that you have no problem with accepting a biography that was written a century after he died [Note: Apollonius died at approximately 100 A.D.], while at the same time rejecting the Gospels which took much less time (20-60 years) to be written.

But before his "beliefs" were developed, he had actually left direct letters behind, purchased by the wealthy businessman/bishop Marcion, who edited them (in reverse order) into being the letters of "paul". The earlest fragmensts of "mark" also reflect the teaching of Marcion, pointing to him as probable author (and that would be the 'gospel' spoken of in the letters of paul)

More assertions without evidence. Would you care to link us to any source that will provide the original text of Apollonius' letters so that I and anybody else who is interested could examine the texts for ourselves?

Anyone can see that Apollonius and "jesus" are two very completely different stories, two men both with very different beliefs. But you can see how the life of Pol and memory of his legend easily added flesh to the myth of jesus. Also, most the emperors didn't like pol nor his followers for the most part, so only a tiny part of pol's ca 100 years for jesus, perhaps leading to the idea "if all he said and did was written down, the world wouldn't be big enough to hold the books

I think that rather than proving that 'paul's' letters were originally Apollonius (a real historic person,but they were edited by Marcion) it might be best if SOMEONE would finally prove to us and the rest of the waiting world of history that there EVER was such a person, such an INFLUENTIAL and highly regarded person, as 'paul of tarsus', who magically managed to leave no more historic foot prints than did 'jesus'.

No historian worth his salt denies that there was a historical figure named Paul. Since we mentioned the apostolic fathers, several of them (such as Clement, a noted elder of the church of Rome who is mentioned by Paul in Philippians 4:3) knew the apostle in person. Unless you want to deny that Clement and the other apostolic fathers existed either, there is really no question that there was indeed a man named Saul of Tarsus.

When you deal with someone who starts denying that the apostle Paul was a real historical figure, you know that you are dealing with a complete loony. I shall relent from posting any more of the (evidently fruitless) youtube dialogue at this point.

1 comment:

  1. may God be glorified in that persons destruction :) 2 Thessalonians 2:11 (English Standard Version)
    11Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,