The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #149778 Message #3491806
Posted By: Bill D
18-Mar-13 - 01:21 PM
Thread Name: Test Your Knowledge of the Bible
Subject: RE: Test Your Knowledge of the Bible
pete- Don Firth's explanations and links, when fully explored, show that much confusion and disagreement about the bible and its construction and historical accuracy come from the many, many errors in translation from ancient texts as scholars (some with political agendas) tried to make sense of languages that hadn't been commonly spoken in a thousand years or more.
Of course there are references to actual places and persons in the Bible, and it may well be that the basic persona of Jesus, as described, was based on some actual prophet/teacher/rabble-rouser! But NONE of the 4 gospels which tell his story was written by anyone who was there at the time or who knew any character named Jesus personally. They did not keep accurate records in Jerusalem or Bethlehem in those times. People told stories about events, and like all events, the stories which were mot interesting got repeated and embroidered.... and at some point, the best stories began to be accepted as fact and used to form alliances to promote 'causes'.
Thus, the biblical stories arrived in Rome and were told in the pidgin Greek spoken in the dockyards, inspiring many of the poor and providing a base for a grass-roots movement to compete with the current religion of Mithras.
If you read all that link on Mithras, it is easy to see that the Christian stories were more 'comfortable' and personal and promising than Mithras, and fortunately for them, Emperor Constantine eventually thought so too!
So, Pete, while one can easily find references to actual people and locations mentioned in the Bible, there is no reason to assume that all names and events mentions were authentic....or that all the metaphysical concepts attributed to them were factual. (Think about it-someone says that someone else named Moses went up a mountain (alone), had a talk with God, and came down with stone tablets with rules carved on them.... and everyone just nodded and believed this!)
As Don F. notes, there were so many writings left out of the Bible because they were either lost for awhile, or just not 'agreeable' to the compilers and translators.
When a traffic accident happens, it is hard to get a clear account from actual eyewitnesses, so Biblical stories written down by those who were not witnesses are even harder to authenticate..... and that's why the word 'believe' is used in religious discussions.