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Have You Accepted God's Gift of Love, Salvation through His Son Jesus Christ? Tell Me More

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Did Jesus Really Exist?

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Despite the impressive historical and archaeological accuracy of the Gospels, many people today believe that Jesus is nothing more than a fable. This idea that Jesus is a fictional character is called the Jesus Myth Hypothesis. However, even Jesus Myth advocate and author, Earl Doherty admits that the majority of historians and scholars accept that Jesus, son of Joseph was in fact a real person.

The reason for this general consensus comes from the multiple writings about Jesus, not just those written by the Gospels, but writings by the Gnostics, Romans, Jewish historians, and even those against Christ and His followers.

One of the earliest writings (after the Gospels) is by Flavius Josephus, a Jewish Historian known for his accuracy. In his writings, the Antiquities of the Jews (published AD 93), Josephus writes:

However, this version of the translation is highly questioned, and is accused of being tampered with or revised to make it sound as if Josephus thought of Christ as the Messiah. In 1971, Shlomo Pines, a Jewish professor published a translation of a different version of the Testimonium, quoted in an Arabic manuscript from the tenth century:

Between these two writings, there is little doubt that Josephus did in fact write of Jesus and His death. There is also an undisputed account of John the Baptist.

Another account of the life and death of Jesus Christ can be found in the Talmud (written between AD 70 and 200). This account views Jesus as a sorcerer, but the over-all plot is very similar to that found in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John:

In Wagenseil's version of Toledot Yeshu, a counter-gospel or anti-gospel, the story of Jesus is told again in a similar fashion as the Gospels, except again Jesus is proclaimed a heretic and seducer. In this account, Jesus performs many wonders (including raising the dead, healing a leper, and walking on water), proclaims Himself the Son of God, is betrayed by Judas, scourged, given a vinegar drink, crowned with a crown of thorns, and then put to death on the Passover. The main difference is in this version Jesus' body is then stolen by the disciples who claim His resurrection.

The story of Jesus is also mentioned in the Quran, where He is viewed as a very wise man, a teacher, and a great prophet. The Quran, however, denies His death claiming that "it appeared as though He had died but He did not" and then talks about His ascension into Heaven.

Lastly, the story of Christ's life and the early church is mentioned by numerous other authors, including Tactitus, Seutonius, Pliny the Younger, Emperor Trajan, Lucian, and Mara Bar-Serapion, along with the Gnostic accounts.

Eerily, the main differences between these accounts are based on the religious views of the writer, with Christians proclaiming Christ's sinless-ness, death, and resurrection; Jews announcing His heresies and permanent death, Gnostics explaining Christ as knowledgeable and spiritual, and Islam proclaiming His holiness and His ascension... but almost every account describes His life, His works, and His death... providing a solid amount of evidence that Jesus, the Son of Joseph did physically exist as a man on this earth.

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