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What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 11:32 pm
by SEG
Does anyone know when the Gospels were first mentioned in secular history? What did the early Christians before Paul's writings believe in?

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:29 pm
by Chapabel
The earliest Christians believed the OT scriptures. The OT scriptures point to Jesus Christ. Read Isaiah 53 for example and you will get a clear picture of Jesus 700 years before His birth.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:42 am
by SEG
Chapabel wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:29 pm
The earliest Christians believed the OT scriptures. The OT scriptures point to Jesus Christ. Read Isaiah 53 for example and you will get a clear picture of Jesus 700 years before His birth.
G'day Chappy! It's good to see some more old members trickling in. Isaiah 53 is NOT a clear picture, it is just another fake prophesy that is vague as hell. Imagine a book being written a thousand years ago containing the words, "the greatest nation in the world will have many enemies" Would that convince you that it was talking about the USA today?

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 1:00 am
by Chapabel
SEG wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:42 am
Chapabel wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:29 pm
The earliest Christians believed the OT scriptures. The OT scriptures point to Jesus Christ. Read Isaiah 53 for example and you will get a clear picture of Jesus 700 years before His birth.
G'day Chappy! It's good to see some more old members trickling in. Isaiah 53 is NOT a clear picture, it is just another fake prophesy that is vague as hell. Imagine a book being written a thousand years ago containing the words, "the greatest nation in the world will have many enemies" Would that convince you that it was talking about the USA today?
Well, if you can’t see Jesus in Isaiah 53, you ain’t looking for Him. Philip used that chapter of Isaiah to lead the Ethiopian eunuch to Christ (Acts 8). If you chose to remain blind, then blind thou shalt be. G’day.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:53 am
by SEG
Chapabel wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 1:00 am
SEG wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:42 am
Chapabel wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:29 pm
The earliest Christians believed the OT scriptures. The OT scriptures point to Jesus Christ. Read Isaiah 53 for example and you will get a clear picture of Jesus 700 years before His birth.
G'day Chappy! It's good to see some more old members trickling in. Isaiah 53 is NOT a clear picture, it is just another fake prophesy that is vague as hell. Imagine a book being written a thousand years ago containing the words, "the greatest nation in the world will have many enemies" Would that convince you that it was talking about the USA today?
Well, if you can’t see Jesus in Isaiah 53, you ain’t looking for Him. Philip used that chapter of Isaiah to lead the Ethiopian eunuch to Christ (Acts 8). If you chose to remain blind, then blind thou shalt be. G’day.
There is nothing written about Jesus there, I looked.
Does you know when the Gospels were first mentioned in secular history? I am guessing that it had to be in the 3rd century.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:07 am
by Chapabel
Nothing there? Holy cow, the entire chapter is a prophecy concerning Jesus. In reference to Isaiah 53, Jewish convert David Baron said:
It is beyond even the wildest credulity to believe that the resemblance in every feature and minutest detail between this prophetic portraiture drawn centuries before [Jesus’] advent and the story of His life, and death, and glorious resurrection as narrated in the gospels, can be mere accident or fortuitous coincidence
As far as secular writings about the Gospels, I don't know.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:45 pm
by Moonwood the Hare
I think
Does anyone know when the Gospels were first mentioned in secular history?
is a misleading question. Secularism did not really exist before the eighteenth century and at that point people began writing secular histories. Even then these histories were written with an ideology, the so called Whig historiography. In the early centuries after Jesus just about everyone practised some kind of religion and held some kinds of religious beliefs so there really was no secular history. So I think you are really asking when the gospels were first mentioned by people outside the Jesus movement and I would think that came quite late. It may be as early as the third century but it could be later than that. It would be very surprising if people who had no religious interest in Jesus were quoting or referring to writing about him.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 11:43 pm
by SEG
Ok, good answer Moon. How about contemporary Christian writers Papias, Clement, or Ignatious of Antioch? Why didn't they write about the four canonical Gospels? I'm thinking now that they weren't written until Marcion wrote his gospels in the second century and that they were written to rebut Marcion's mentions of a Docetic Jesus.

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:18 am
by Moonwood the Hare
As I keep saying it's not my field. These are technical matters and you need to discuss them with someone with the appropriate academic background. I do know that Irenaeus compares the four gospels to the four winds or four corners of the earth which suggests that the idea of there being four gospels was well established by his time. Traditionally people thought Mathews gospel was the first - Augustine argues that and John Wenham has made that case in our own time. Most scholars opt for Mark. John Robinson argued for the primacy of John though he sees a strong role for oral traditions developing in parallel. Part of his case is based on the historical details in John which seem to be accurate to life in Palestine in the first century, so you might want to look into his work. I have not heard of any scholar arguing for the primacy of Luke. I would have thought there were massive textual diffiulties in making that case but again it'snot my field

Re: What were the earliest mentions of Christianity?

Posted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:18 am
by SEG
Just because it's not your field doesn't mean you can't have an opinion. What you think of the proposal that Marcion was the first to write his gospels in the second century and that the canonical gospels were written later to rebut Marcion's mentions of a Docetic Jesus?