Author Topic: When Was Jesus Born Again?  (Read 7756 times)

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Offline Tero

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #58 on: February 09, 2012, 06:23:55 PM »
The more I read, the worse it gets. First I had to dump God as it did not make sense. Then I kind of wondered if Jesus was onto something, some useful universal truth. But he was not real, so I have no idea who pulled the strings.

Then Paul...not the Beatles one, the Beatles are still gods or royalty...turned out to be a fabrication too. I did not mind him being gay but he hated or looked down upon women.

Offline Skotos

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #59 on: February 09, 2012, 11:44:56 PM »
I think the best we can do is guess.  My personal option would be a birth some time in 3-2 BC.  The Bible says he was born while Herod was still alive and ruling (in whatever capacity that may have been).  I think the main consensus is that Herod died some time in 4 BC.  His death is mentioned by Josephus to have coincided with a lunar eclpise, and that it was before the passover.  One of the issues I have with this is the only reasonable eclpise in 4 BC was this one:

http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/5MCLEmap/-0099-0000/LE-0004-03-23T.gif

As you can see, it barely even touches Israel, and whatever was visible probably would have occured in the wee hours of the morning.  Also, since passover was in the spring, usually falling in March or April, there doesn't seem to be enough time given between Herod's death and Passover with which all of the necessary mourning for a dignitary to take place.  It would have been really crammed I think.

However, this eclipse fits the bill rather well I think:

http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/5MCLEmap/-0099-0000/LE-0001-01-20P.gif

See how it smacks Israel right at it's peak?  Also, since it happened in January, it gives more time for mourning before the next Passover occured in March or April.

These are just my thoughts, nothing here is set in stone.  It's ancient history past and no one knows for sure....

Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #60 on: February 10, 2012, 09:54:56 AM »
^^^^ indeed.  The problem is that there are no contemporary records of events that shold have been quite obvious and Christians must retcon their myths into anything that's even close.  JC is no more real than Achilles having been dipped in magic water.
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Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #61 on: February 12, 2012, 02:41:49 AM »

Asatru?   From your words in one of the other threads, it sure seemed like you were respondign as a Christian. 

It seems like everyone assumes that.

Mostly I'm here to blow off steam and have fun arguing with people on the internet, so since I have been in arguments with athiests, people assume I'm trying to convert them. Touchy lot, you. I don't particularly mind that miscategorization for the most part, it seems like they deserve the help.
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BTW, Odin, Thor, Freya, Baldur, etc, don't appear to exist either.   Which is a pity since they seem better than Christianity.  At least Odin sacrificed for wisdom. All of the arguments against Christianity work against any other religion.

and I see nothing to rebut my observations.

Which observations are those? I've not yet heard any arguments against Christianity. only arguments against arguments for Christianity. and of those arguments for Christianity, few seem to have been forwarded by Christians to begin with.

I'll offer an observation though. "methinks thou dost protest too much"

it seems important to you to declare victory early and often. This conversation started when you were declaring victory over something which i'm now rather confident did not merit such declaration, and now hear you are learning the situation was entirely different then you thought, and yet here you are declaring victory again. I'm interested in hearing why that is. The stereotype of that behavior is insecurity, but I don't think that applies.

Is it maybe an evangelical technique on your part? Attempting to crush theist spirits as a means to emotionally dismantle their faith?

Or is there maybe something deeper to it.

Are you even aware yourself that you behave this way?

Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #62 on: February 13, 2012, 10:02:01 AM »
It seems like everyone assumes that.
Assumes what?  That you are Asatru because you claim to be a Norse pagan or that you are a Christian?  If it is the second, you might want to consider why that is.  I’m guessing it’s because it’s the truth, but I could be wrong.
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Mostly I'm here to blow off steam and have fun arguing with people on the internet, so since I have been in arguments with athiests, people assume I'm trying to convert them. Touchy lot, you. I don't particularly mind that miscategorization for the most part, it seems like they deserve the help.
So, you simply want to be a troll?  Hmm.  I don't recall thinking that you were trying to convert me or stating this.  But I am getting more and more certain that you are a Christian but don’t want to be responsible for your claims.   The deception that so many theists seem to need amuses me.
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Which observations are those? I've not yet heard any arguments against Christianity. only arguments against arguments for Christianity. and of those arguments for Christianity, few seem to have been forwarded by Christians to begin with.
Which observations?  Mine, lorax. They are the observations that you make baseless claims and your logic fails.  You’ve tried so hard to declare that the OP of this thread wasn’t an good argument on why Christianity is a flawed religion, and to do that, you’ve simply ignored what you didn’t want to see.  Then, like clockwork, rather than support your claims with evidence, you’ve decided to claim that you were “really” here only to “blow off steam and have fun arguing” with people.  That’s pretty typical, for a Christian who has found himself cornered by reality, they suddenly claim that they weren’t really interested in the discussion.  It seems that you have quite the blinders on if you are trying to claim that there are no arguments against Christianity here.  And it seems that we have a OneTrueChristian here, with your attempts at trying to claim that "few" Christians have been forwarding arguments here. 
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I'll offer an observation though. "methinks thou dost protest too much"
it seems important to you to declare victory early and often. This conversation started when you were declaring victory over something which i'm now rather confident did not merit such declaration, and now hear you are learning the situation was entirely different then you thought, and yet here you are declaring victory again. I'm interested in hearing why that is. The stereotype of that behavior is insecurity, but I don't think that applies.
offer all the claims you want, lorax.  The problem for you is that only evidence matters.  You've not supported your claims and indeed, it seems that many of your claims are offered with an intent to deceive.  You keep making baseless claims about me.  And in the same paragraph where you claim that I somehow need to declare victory "early and often", you do exactly that and of course don't back up your "confidence" with anything.  Again, there is nothing to rebut my observations, only you avoiding the issue, which does a nice job of giving me more reason to think my observations are indeed correct.  You have claimed that you are a Norse pagan rather than a Christian but your posts make me question that with your assumptions that people think you are out to convert them.  In that we’ve seen no words from you trying to convert anyone to the truth of Odin’s sacrifice and Valhalla, I’m not sure why you would say this.   You have made arguments that appear to attempt to defend Christianity.  You do not address my arguments that the Norse gods are no more real than the Christian one.  If you are indeed a pagan, give me evidence that your religion is the true one. 
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Is it maybe an evangelical technique on your part? Attempting to crush theist spirits as a means to emotionally dismantle their faith?
Quite the drama here. Crush their spirits?  No, I’m asking for evidence, lorax.  Your logic fails and you provide no evidence for your claims despite my requests.  I’m sorry if you think this is to crush your spirit, but it isn’t.  It is to further a discussion.  You seem to need to create a situation that you can claim martyrdom in, which also makes me think that you are a Christian trying to be a clever sheep. 
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Or is there maybe something deeper to it.Are you even aware yourself that you behave this way?
Behave in what way, lorax?  Please do psychoanalyze me. This should be fun.   
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Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #63 on: February 15, 2012, 05:41:58 AM »
My my. I do believe I have hit a nerve.

Believe what you will and so shall I. I say you've made no argument and you provide a wall of text, but still no argument to be found. Lots of accusation, no argument.

I hear you saying I have no evidence. That's handy since I've made no claims.

I asked you questions, You've dodged them.

I've pointed out places where your argument leaks. you've gotten angry

But I haven't actually said anything of substance about the real world.

You asked me my own beliefs "to understand where I'm coming from" that's obviously not true considering the way you've used that response to derail us completely. But I told you. Now you are asking me to prove it?

No thanks. I'm good.

How about you answer my questions first?

Offline Tero

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #64 on: February 15, 2012, 07:23:25 AM »
The shoe is the sign! He had shoes! He was real!

Offline Hatter23

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #65 on: February 15, 2012, 08:41:59 AM »
My my. I do believe I have hit a nerve.


That's the point of trolling, isn't it?
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #66 on: February 15, 2012, 11:12:56 AM »
My my. I do believe I have hit a nerve.
  Nice.  Avoid answering questions, lie, etc, but do try to convince yourself that you've done something.  Keep going, Lorax. I enjoy watching you do all of those things.  Especially since I know you are a troll.   
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Believe what you will and so shall I. I say you've made no argument and you provide a wall of text, but still no argument to be found. Lots of accusation, no argument.
oh my, a unilateral claim and of course no evidence to support it. So impressive! &)
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I hear you saying I have no evidence. That's handy since I've made no claims. I asked you questions, You've dodged them.
  You have made claims, Lorax.  Let’s see:
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I've not yet heard any arguments against Christianity. only arguments against arguments for Christianity. and of those arguments for Christianity, few seem to have been forwarded by Christians to begin with.
With no evidence to support this.  And if I have dodged anything please show where. I would be happy to clarify anything you might consider a dodge. 
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I've pointed out places where your argument leaks. you've gotten angry
Ah, no.  You’ve assumed I’ve gotten angry and assumed that in error.  And you have yet to show me where my argument “leaks”.
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But I haven't actually said anything of substance about the real world.
I can certainly agree with that.  Freudian slip? 
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You asked me my own beliefs "to understand where I'm coming from" that's obviously not true considering the way you've used that response to derail us completely. But I told you. Now you are asking me to prove it?
I’ve seen you claim that you were a Norse pagan and where you have seemed to affirm that assumpetions that you are a Christain are correct.  Which is it, Lorax?  You make more claims that I have somehow “derailed” the discussion, and of course have backed that up with nothing.  I am indeed asking that you state the truth.  Your evident reluctance is curious.  And answer your questions?  I have.  If I have missed one, please point it out. I’d be more than happy to address anything you think I have missed. 

I’m still waiting for you to psychoanalyze me, Lorax, since you seem to think you can.  You have claimed that I must be unaware that I act in some certain way. What is this certain way?  I have told you that I am not angry, that I have not dodged, etc.  The ball is in your court. 
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Offline Historicity

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #67 on: February 15, 2012, 03:54:13 PM »
Mostly I'm here to blow off steam and have fun arguing with people on the internet,

The very definition of trolling.

« Last Edit: February 15, 2012, 03:55:50 PM by Historicity »

Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #68 on: February 15, 2012, 10:21:47 PM »
Mostly I'm here to blow off steam and have fun arguing with people on the internet,

The very definition of trolling.

Is that the "trolling"refereed to in the rules?

I assumed they were more referring to flame wars and intentionally saying things you don't believe to get a rise out of people.

Arguing on the internet on the other hand, I thought was encouraged on this board. and if not.. then what is the board for?

Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #69 on: February 15, 2012, 10:25:36 PM »
Velkyn,

You're right of course I have no idea what you felt, and I cannot appropriately psychoanalyse you given a few responses on a message board. You may have written what you wrote with all the love and sincerity in your heart and I would have no means to claim otherwise. You win

Now:

What About this Quirinius guy?

Is there any significance to his governorship over Syria, that will help establish or dismantle the christian faith?

Offline theFLEW

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #70 on: February 16, 2012, 01:09:38 AM »
Lorax, I'm going to give you a friendly warning, this thread is about to go south very quickly; I speak from personal experience.

It is believed that the census or registration Luke may be referring to was Augustus’ Pater Patriae (someone may have already mentioned this).

Josephus mentions this "oath" in his Antiquities, namely, "Accordingly, when all the people of the Jews gave assurance of their good-will to Caesar, and to the king's government, these very men did not swear, being above six thousand; and when the king imposed a fine upon them, Pheroras's wife paid their fine for them."  see:

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0146%3Abook%3D17%3Awhiston+chapter%3D2%3Awhiston+section%3D4

It is also mentioned in Res Gestae Divi Augusti, see:

http://classics.mit.edu/Augustus/deeds.html (number 35)

Lewis and Reinhold also mention it in their book, Roman civilization: selected readings., see:

http://books.google.com/books?id=nd7uttiF3PUC&lpg=PA555&pg=PA588#v=onepage&q&f=false

More importantly from a historians standpoint, Orosius, a 5th century historian (with better access to records than we have today) linked the two events, i.e. linking the census to swearing loyalty to Caesar, see:

http://books.google.com/books?id=s49zf3smkwwC&lpg=PA261&pg=PA322#v=onepage&q&f=false

Concerning Quirinius, note carefully that Josephus uses a plural number when referring to the governorship under Saturninus, the Syrian governor in question, i.e. "AS HE DID ALSO WITH SATURNINUS, THE PRESIDENT OF SYRIA AND THE GOVERNORS WHO WERE UNDER HIM", see:

http://www.sacred-texts.com/jud/josephus/ant-17.htm

Who were these governors under Saturninus?  I believe elsewhere Josephus mentions Volumnius, but other than that, these other "governors" are lost to history...except in one account, and that is of Luke.  Perhaps Quirinius was one of the governors given special consulship to oversee the loyalty oath in the Judean region.

Lastly, it must be mentioned that archaeologist Sir William Ramsay noted that  that Luke was a historian of "the first rank."  Furthermore, Luke (in Acts 5:37) correctly correlated the uprising of a one Judas of Galilee to the time period of the census of Quirinius in AD 6.  Josephus confirms this, see:

http://www.sacred-texts.com/jud/josephus/ant-18.htm

As Luke clearly has historical context in mind, it seems that we should trust him as an accurate historian in the absence of other historical record.

So for a bit of chronology as I see it, it is my opinion that Jesus was born sometime in 3 BC, which correlates well with the Pater Patriae (I like the imagery here incidentally; the greatest oath to a ruler in the history of the world joined with the birth of the rightful ruler of the world).  It is my opinion that Herod died sometime in 1 BC (having relinquished aspects of rulership to his sons before that time, probably due to incapacity in illness, which Josephus actually records; for a good treatment on this, see Andrew Steinmann's paper: http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/brill/not/2009/00000051/00000001/art00001), and his death corresponded possibly with this lunar eclipse, as recorded in Josephus:

http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/5MCLEmap/-0099-0000/LE-0001-01-20P.gif

I would make a note that NONE of this is set in stone, and is just the best treatment on Luke's passage that I have found.  You are welcome to disagree.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 01:13:56 AM by theFLEW »
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Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #71 on: February 16, 2012, 10:27:55 AM »
Velkyn,

You're right of course I have no idea what you felt, and I cannot appropriately psychoanalyse you given a few responses on a message board. You may have written what you wrote with all the love and sincerity in your heart and I would have no means to claim otherwise. You win
Now:
What About this Quirinius guy?
Is there any significance to his governorship over Syria, that will help establish or dismantle the christian faith?
I'm supposed to be impressed that you admited I won?  Nope, not at all. I just see one more Christian who tried to lie and got caught.  I won long ago.

I've already answered you lorax, but I will do so again just to make sure you have no choice but to see it.  Christians claim that Quirinius' existence as a real person means that JC existed too.  It makes no sense to anyone who has a functioning brain that does not have a presupposition to support, but *this* is the significance that Christians assign to Qurinius.  In that they must coopt real events and make up things to try to provide evidence for their messiah,  by declaring dates for events that are not supported by facts,  for getting facts about real events wrong (like the nonsense a Roman census would make everyone return to the city of their birth) this establishes that there is little reason to consider any claim by a Christian without considerable doubt and additional research.  The stories in the gospels were made up long after the supposed events occured.  There is no evidence to support the existence of Jesus Christ, the lynchpin of the Christian faith. 

If JC can be doubted to exist and doubted strongly, with no evidence to support that he did exist, this helps dismantle the Christian faith since it can be demonstrated that this religion is no more supported by evidence than any other. 

Now, concerning NTS’s claims.  There is no reason to assume that “Luke” is any kind of a historian than there is to claim that Homer was a historian and Greek gods are real too since Troy now seems to be a quite real place.  There may not be any thing better out there but that is absolutely no reason to think that Luke is somehow right about anything.  Sir William Mitchell RamsayWiki was a archaeologist who died in 1939.  He may have said that Luke was a historian “of the first rank” but there is no evidence supporting this claim.  Ramsay’s claims that the bible must be true if he could find cities of the same name would also make Spiderman comics true since they also mention cities that really exist.  He would claim that the events in Acts were totally supported but of course, they have not been.  There is no contemporary record of men doing magic as Acts describes.  No Simon Magus, no contests between apostles on who were the “real” ones, etc.  What is more interesting is that even the book of the bible disagree on events in Acts where Paul and the Apostles claims don’t match up.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 10:30:49 AM by velkyn »
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Offline theFLEW

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #72 on: February 16, 2012, 12:38:50 PM »
Hmmmm, do you know any books that talk about Luke not being a good historian?  If they happen to be on Google Books (maybe my favorite internet invention), please pass the link along, I would like to read them.  Scholarly articles would work too.

I tend to trust Ramsay on this one.  He wrote an excellent treatment on the subject.  See:

http://books.google.com/books?id=GuU0AQAAIAAJ&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false

Furthermore, I followed you wiki link, and after reading it, I feel that I would even moreso trust the opinion of someone who was "educated at Oxford, held several prestigious professorships, including "First Professor of Classical Archaeology" and "Lincoln and Merton Professorship of Classical Archaeology and Art" at Oxford, and "Regius Professor of Humanity" at the University of Aberdeen, who received gold medals from Pope Leo XII, the University of Pennsylvania, the Royal Geographical Society, and the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, and who was the first Professor of Classical Archaeology at Oxford University, and pioneered the study of antiquity in what is today western Turkey."
"...and how much naivety, venerable, childlike and boundlessly stupid naivety there is in the scholar's belief in his superiority, in the good conscience of his tolerance, in the simply unsuspecting certainty with which his instinct treats the religious man as an inferior..." - F. Nietzsche

Offline screwtape

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #73 on: February 16, 2012, 01:34:20 PM »
Do you think something new may have been learned in the 111 years since Ramsay retired?

also, you got your pope wrong. Leo xii died 22 years before ramsay was born.  You meant leo xiii.
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Offline theFLEW

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #74 on: February 16, 2012, 01:47:21 PM »
Hey, archeology is a slow process.  If you're really interested, sign up for a dig to help speed things up! ;) I'm hopefully going to go on one (as an student of course) through the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, eventually, and only if I'm accepted.

And I just copied off the Wikipedia article that Velkyn posted; I didn't personally research Ramsay's credentials or anything.  You're welcome to edit the Wikipedia article to correct it....
"...and how much naivety, venerable, childlike and boundlessly stupid naivety there is in the scholar's belief in his superiority, in the good conscience of his tolerance, in the simply unsuspecting certainty with which his instinct treats the religious man as an inferior..." - F. Nietzsche

Offline screwtape

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #75 on: February 16, 2012, 03:03:03 PM »
Hey, archeology is a slow process.

It aint that slow.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #76 on: February 16, 2012, 03:07:27 PM »
Now, concerning NTS’s claims.  There is no reason to assume that “Luke” is any kind of a historian than there is to claim that Homer was a historian and Greek gods are real too since Troy now seems to be a quite real place.  There may not be any thing better out there but that is absolutely no reason to think that Luke is somehow right about anything.  Sir William Mitchell RamsayWiki was a archaeologist who died in 1939.  He may have said that Luke was a historian “of the first rank” but there is no evidence supporting this claim.  Ramsay’s claims that the bible must be true if he could find cities of the same name would also make Spiderman comics true since they also mention cities that really exist.  He would claim that the events in Acts were totally supported but of course, they have not been.  There is no contemporary record of men doing magic as Acts describes.  No Simon Magus, no contests between apostles on who were the “real” ones, etc.  What is more interesting is that even the book of the bible disagree on events in Acts where Paul and the Apostles claims don’t match up.
Hmmmm, do you know any books that talk about Luke not being a good historian?  If they happen to be on Google Books (maybe my favorite internet invention), please pass the link along, I would like to read them.  Scholarly articles would work too.
  ROFL.  Oh oh my.  :D  Hmmm, we have 19th century books that says that Luke was such a fabulous historian. Most authors don’t consider “Luke” a historian at all, good or bad, but the author of the gospel of luke and perhaps Acts.  As soon as the historicity (or accuracy of reality) of the bible is brought up, many Christian authors insist that  wasn’t “meant” to be historical (even your Ramsay, see below).  Unfortunately, as I have stated, Ramsay’s hypothesis would make Spiderman as real as Jesus.  This is something I have mentioned earlier and that you have not rebutted.  NTS, can you explain to me why the gospel should be considered more historical and accurate than greek mythology which does the exact same things as the gospel does, mentioning real places, very likely versions of real people etc?

Ramsay says “Is it consistent with human nature that a writer who claims to earnestly setting forth the simple facts should begin with so impudent a series of fabrications?”  IMO, this can be reduced to “How can you dare disbelief the bible, it says it’s true”.  But that’s my opinion.  However, yep, it sure is consistent, Ramsay.  First, we have no idea of the character of “Luke”.  It is only Ramsay’s assumption that he is honest.  So we are faced with two possibilities (there may be more, please feel free to give them), that “Luke” is telling a fish story to make his religion seem better using bad information that he likes (like so many creationists do today), or that he has a malicious intent.  Giving the author the benefit of the doubt, there is nothing in human nature to preclude his wanting to make his story better and being inept at it. We see that all of the time. 

Ramsay make a horrible argument, that the Roman census must have been done as the bible says since that’s what God needed to have it fulfill prophecy.  There is no evidence supporting that the Romans suddenly changed their minds for a one off event.  The one piece of evidence for some new kind of census comes from a century after the supposed events and from a different country.  This is a case of Occam’s razor.     

Since the book was written so late, one cannot know that the writer was not retconning the story to fit OT prophey, and going it badly since they ignore various prophecies and get some wrong by mistranslation.  Ramsay’s work is full of the usual excuse, that suddenly when convenient, the gospels are magically not supposed to be a biography but “their completeness is moral and spiritual” but oh the parts he wants to be accurate must be evidence that Luke was telling the truth about everything else he wants to be true too.  I’ve wandered the internet looking at what  Christians claim are rebuttals to Eherman and they all come down to the same arguments, all wishful thinking with their magic decoder rings. I always enjoy the sudden reversal of claims when a Christian initial claim, that the gospels are accurate about history fails. 

Then we have books saying repeatedly that the gospels are nonsense.  Let’s see what evidence do we have that the gospels are questionable in their historicity:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_reliability_of_the_Gospels
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Census_of_Quirinius
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_reliability_of_the_Acts_of_the_Apostles  needs cleaned up but the references to verses, history and how they don’t match, like the province of Cilicia and the dates claimed for events, are all here.  Check out the reference cited. 

Various books by Bart Ehrman.  Have you read any of those, NTS?  I know they’ve been recommended to you.  He, and I admit, that yep, there are historical references in the gospels.  The problem is that they are not supported and again, have as much reference to real events as Spiderman swinging around Wall Street.   I know that Christians need JC to be born in Bethlehem and then move to Nazareth to make nice with the prophecies they have chosen to belief, but there is nothing to say that any of this happened, not per Ramsay or Strobel or anyone.  They all base their claims on unsupported assumptions to support their presumptions. 

As a quick read of these, any assumption of any historical accurace of Luke is built on assumptions, for example that the Romans would be concerned about the feelings of the Jews.  Really?  The Romans being concerned enough to throw an entire occupied country into an uproar because were concerned with the Jewish interest in their ancestry.  No evidence of this either.

We see no evidence that their claims are supported by contemporary works.  No census where everyone had to return to the place of their birth (Luke has the manger story, no one else does and again it makes little sense since the census would not require people to travel), your own gospels can’t get details straight with Matthew missing this whole episode completely (funny how he forgets to mention the host of angels, etc),  no mass meetings in occupied Palestine, no magical events related to the cruxifiction, no evidence of any magical apostles being executed, Luke makes claims about Paul and Paul refutes them (some historian, eh? can’t even agree with one of your own subjects), etc.  These all should have been noticed by people but they weren’t.  What Christians have to do is to try to find anything remotely similar to what is claimed, and that has Christians disagreeing on dates, contradicting each other depending on what misinformation they have glommed onto   

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I tend to trust Ramsay on this one.  He wrote an excellent treatment on the subject.  See:
http://books.google.com/books?id=GuU0AQAAIAAJ&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false 
I’m sure you do think it’s “excellent” since it is a book that starts with a supposition, that the gospels were accurate and that they were written by whom he thought, the actual apostles. and has no evidence to support its conclusions.  It’s a shame that you have to rely on superseded information for your claims, NTS.  Your book was written in 1898.  It’s been a century of research since then and it has shown that his claims are flawed.  He had no idea that they weren’t what he thought. 
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Furthermore, I followed you wiki link, and after reading it, I feel that I would even moreso trust the opinion of someone who was "educated at Oxford, held several prestigious professorships, including "First Professor of Classical Archaeology" and "Lincoln and Merton Professorship of Classical Archaeology and Art" at Oxford, and "Regius Professor of Humanity" at the University of Aberdeen, who received gold medals from Pope Leo XII, the University of Pennsylvania, the Royal Geographical Society, and the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, and who was the first Professor of Classical Archaeology at Oxford University, and pioneered the study of antiquity in what is today western Turkey."

Ooooh, an appeal to authority.  Nice, NTS.  Unfortunately, that does nothing to support his claims.  It shows he was tope of his field a century ago.  Quite a valid comment but essentially meaningless in the light of further research.  He can still be wrong and since it’s been quite a few decades since he died, that isn’t a bad thing. Peole thought there was a chance of a hollow earth then too.  He simply didn’t know that what he has claimed was not supported.  You see, science and archaeology change when evidence arises to make one reconsider.  Your inability to go beyond one dated book that supports you shows that you are not interested in actual evidence and following where it leads.


EDIT: love that last post of yours, NTS.  wow, more excuses and ignorance.   And nice ot see that you can never take responsibility for what you say, NTS.  Sorry, but it's not my fault that you are willfully lazy and ignorant. 
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 03:09:47 PM by velkyn »
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Offline theFLEW

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #77 on: February 16, 2012, 07:08:22 PM »
I have never read Bart Ehrman, do you have a specific book of his that would shed light on Luke as a historian?

Your Wikipedia article on the "Historical reliability of the Gospels" does nothing to prove or negate any question of Luke as a historian.  The article on Quirinius has two paragraph on Luke near the bottom:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Census_of_Quirinius#Historicity_of_Luke.27s_details

Neither of which rule out Luke being correct or incorrect on the matter, and neither of which addressing any of the texts I mentioned in the earlier post.

The article on the reliability of Acts brings up a handful of smaller contradictions of "disputed accuracy"; none of which expound on themselves, none of which give give a good, academic approach to both sides of the argument, and ultimately, none of which leading one to doubt Luke as a good historian.  If Luke would have said that Nero was emperor when Jesus was born, there would be issues.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 07:11:08 PM by theFLEW »
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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #78 on: February 17, 2012, 09:28:04 AM »
So as long as Luke gets the broad strokes right, the details about the allegations about jews rising from the dead can be taken at face value?
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Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #79 on: February 17, 2012, 11:07:26 AM »
I have never read Bart Ehrman, do you have a specific book of his that would shed light on Luke as a historian?
I suspected that you haven’t read Ehrman. Doesn’t surprise me at all, and I can pretty much guarantee that you will not even if I suggest a book.  But I will, and even more than one:

The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings

Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why

Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible

Forged: Writing in the Name of God--Why the Bible's Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are

Now, I’m not saying you should buy all of these.  Go to the library and get them on interlibrary loan. 
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Your Wikipedia article on the "Historical reliability of the Gospels" does nothing to prove or negate any question of Luke as a historian.
Really?
Quote
A key contested issue is the historicity of Luke's depiction of Paul.

Quote
Professor of New Testament Robert M. Grant says "Luke evidently regarded himself as a historian, but many questions can be raised in regard to the reliability of his history […] His ‘statistics’ are impossible; Peter could not have addressed three thousand hearers [e.g. in Acts 2:41 without a microphone, and since the population of Jerusalem was about 25-30,000, Christians cannot have numbered five thousand [e.g. Acts 4:4]."[30]
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Richard Pervo believes that this demonstrates that Luke used Josephus as a source and mistakenly thought that the sicarii were followers of The Egyptian.
So, we can see that your claims that every one thinks the author of Luke as a good historian
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Hmmmm, do you know any books that talk about Luke not being a good historian?  If they happen to be on Google Books (maybe my favorite internet invention), please pass the link along, I would like to read them.  Scholarly articles would work too.
are not universal at all. 
Quote
The article on Quirinius has two paragraph on Luke near the bottom:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Census_of_Quirinius#Historicity_of_Luke.27s_details 
Neither of which rule out Luke being correct or incorrect on the matter, and neither of which addressing any of the texts I mentioned in the earlier post.
As your quote above says, you were looking for evidence that Luke was not thought of as a good historian. The article directly says that the author of luke is questioned by scholars.   We have plenty of people questioning Luke’s claims.  Thus Ramsay’s claim that Luke was such wonderful recorder of history are not true and he is depending on the author of Luke to be correct about Qurinius.  Again, no evidence of any census as claimed in the bible by “luke”, which Ramsay assumes to be true.

Quote
The article on the reliability of Acts brings up a handful of smaller contradictions of "disputed accuracy"; none of which expound on themselves, none of which give give a good, academic approach to both sides of the argument, and ultimately, none of which leading one to doubt Luke as a good historian.  If Luke would have said that Nero was emperor when Jesus was born, there would be issues.
  As screwtape has noted, Christians always try this nonsense, to ignore the problem in their supposedly historical book.  All of the sudden, things become conveniently inconsequential, and knowing your track record, NTS, if the author of Luke claimed that Nero was emperor in his story, you’d try to excuse that too. The gospel of luke can’t even agree with other gospels much less history.  For a book that is supposedly magically influences, it’s sad to watch people spend time and resources desperately trying to lie about it and do all they can to in failed attempts to make it make any kind of sense, often contradicting their fellow Christians. Such a farce.

Alas for you, NTS, they do expound on their claims, and give a good academic approach to both sides of the argument, with the Christian one being shown to fail.  Again, your attempts at declaring that you and only you are the arbiter of what “good academic” approaches are and what consists of “expounding on themselves” is so pitiful, baseless  and transparent. It’s like if I declared that I was an expert indiesel mechanics and proceeded to avoid any actual work on a diesel engine.  The scholars who dispute the supposed historical accurace of Luke *do* lead many people, including me, to doubt that the author of Luke and Acts to be a “good historian”. That’s why people accept the books and why the wiki articles say repeatedly that scholars are not in agreement.  Now, NTS,  keep repeating your baseless claims for another 40,000 times and may be you can test Orwell’s claim that things magically become the “truth” then.   

Now, again, NTS, show me why I should consider Luke a historian and not Homer, and not consider the greek gods just as valid as yours. This is the crux of the discussion.  I expect you to address it.
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Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #80 on: February 18, 2012, 08:08:09 AM »
What About this Quirinius guy?
Is there any significance to his governorship over Syria, that will help establish or dismantle the christian faith?
<snip>

I've already answered you lorax, but I will do so again just to make sure you have no choice but to see it.  Christians claim that Quirinius' existence as a real person means that JC existed too.  It makes no sense to anyone who has a functioning brain that does not have a presupposition to support, but *this* is the significance that Christians assign to Qurinius.  In that they must coopt real events and make up things to try to provide evidence for their messiah,  by declaring dates for events that are not supported by facts,  for getting facts about real events wrong (like the nonsense a Roman census would make everyone return to the city of their birth) this establishes that there is little reason to consider any claim by a Christian without considerable doubt and additional research.  The stories in the gospels were made up long after the supposed events occured.  There is no evidence to support the existence of Jesus Christ, the lynchpin of the Christian faith. 

Unless I;m missing something, that is the longest and most complicated way I've ever seen anybody say the word "No"

That is what you meant right?

No, there is no significance.

It proves an argument wrong that was wrong anyway.

That's all I wanted to know
Quote

If JC can be doubted to exist and doubted strongly, with no evidence to support that he did exist, this helps dismantle the Christian faith since it can be demonstrated that this religion is no more supported by evidence than any other. 

I'm not sure if this is a new argument or a continuation of the second one. I hope it's a new one because if so it's valid.

Indeed in JC can be doubted due to lack of evidence, then Christians lose their favorite reason for thinking they're special.

On the other hand if it's a continuation, since you've already correctly established that Quirinius might as well have been governor, since even if he was that wouldn't help establish evidence for the truth of Luke, or the existence of Christ. Then it's a non sequitor and you're just trying to save a bad argument by tacking on a good one. after all in no way does it follow that "Quirinius was not governor" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus" any more than "roses are red" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus"

The conclusion might be true, it's just not established by the premise

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #81 on: February 20, 2012, 04:18:12 AM »
...Aafter all in no way does it follow that "Quirinius was not governor" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus" any more than "roses are red" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus"

The conclusion might be true, it's just not established by the premise.

It may not follow strictly from a logic POV, but if an author's work contains inaccuracies it does suggest either carelessness or actual lack of knowledge.

In both cases, I think the Quirinius error can be explained by the Gospels being fabricated out of hearsay and mythology long after the alleged events.

For instance, let's say that someone decides to deify Buddy Holly and drops in a reference to him watching the TV broadcast of Neil Armstrong walking on the moon.  From our POV we know that to be highly unlikely, as he died 10 years prior to the moonwalk; but the very presence of 2 real people and a historical event may convince some future reader that the story of Buddy Holly turning ginger ale into single malt Scotch is real.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2012, 04:32:50 AM by Astreja »
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Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #82 on: February 20, 2012, 09:11:29 AM »
...Aafter all in no way does it follow that "Quirinius was not governor" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus" any more than "roses are red" therefore "there is no evidence for Jesus"

The conclusion might be true, it's just not established by the premise.

It may not follow strictly from a logic POV, but if an author's work contains inaccuracies it does suggest either carelessness or actual lack of knowledge.

In both cases, I think the Quirinius error can be explained by the Gospels being fabricated out of hearsay and mythology long after the alleged events.

For instance, let's say that someone decides to deify Buddy Holly and drops in a reference to him watching the TV broadcast of Neil Armstrong walking on the moon.  From our POV we know that to be highly unlikely, as he died 10 years prior to the moonwalk; but the very presence of 2 real people and a historical event may convince some future reader that the story of Buddy Holly turning ginger ale into single malt Scotch is real.

I see that argument Astreja. Apparently that wasn't the point Velkyn was making.

I'm not a christian, but I read through the article in the OP and I think that's the argument that article was written to discredit.

If you see holes in the article, I think OP is still looking for someone to shoot it down for him

Offline Astreja

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #83 on: February 20, 2012, 11:01:55 PM »
If you see holes in the article, I think OP is still looking for someone to shoot it down for him

Holes?  Já, I see a few...

Quote from: God's Kingdom Ministries, Chapter 9
We know from Luke's account that a supernatural darkness covered the land from the sixth hour to the ninth... {emphasis Mine}

The article references a lunar eclipse that supposedly happened later in the day, but offers no plausible explanation for this "supernatural" darkness.

Quote
Herod killed the children of Bethlehem about a month before he himself died.

No extra-Biblical source for this alleged massacre.

Quote
We can hardly blame them for not knowing how the principle of Blessed Time works, because this appears to be a new understanding not revealed in the past. Yet it is clear now that Blessed Time, as well as Judged Time and Cursed Time, are all cycles of forgiveness-grace periods, during which time God "forgives," withholding judgment for sin.

And that's just plain silly. :P
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Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #84 on: February 21, 2012, 11:18:26 AM »
What About this Quirinius guy?
Is there any significance to his governorship over Syria, that will help establish or dismantle the christian faith?
<snip>
I've already answered you lorax, but I will do so again just to make sure you have no choice but to see it.  Christians claim that Quirinius' existence as a real person means that JC existed too.  It makes no sense to anyone who has a functioning brain that does not have a presupposition to support, but *this* is the significance that Christians assign to Qurinius.  In that they must coopt real events and make up things to try to provide evidence for their messiah,  by declaring dates for events that are not supported by facts,  for getting facts about real events wrong (like the nonsense a Roman census would make everyone return to the city of their birth) this establishes that there is little reason to consider any claim by a Christian without considerable doubt and additional research.  The stories in the gospels were made up long after the supposed events occured.  There is no evidence to support the existence of Jesus Christ, the lynchpin of the Christian faith. 

Unless I;m missing something, that is the longest and most complicated way I've ever seen anybody say the word "No"
Ah, nice to see that you are indeed missing something and have decided to declare that I magically really only meant “no”.  Sorry, Lorax, again you are wrong.  Pity you had to decide to ignore my post’s content to get the answer you decided I simply must have meant.  I do love how deceitful you are <applause>.   That sure does allow you to not bother with any rebuttal doesn’t it?  And it’s sweet on how you decided all by yourself that I must have meant the second bit to be separate.  No, again, your magic psychic abilities have failed you again, Lorax.  Not suprising since they’ve done that so far.  Unfortunately for you, they fit quite nicely together, both my statements about Quirinius and my statement about JC.  As Astreja has said, if you can doubt one, there is plenty of reason to doubt the other.  I’ve bolded the part that I think shows this argument so you can see it.

You’ve claimed I’ve used a non-sequitor as a new excuse on your part to try to claim I’m wrong. And as always, with no evidence of such.  Gee, how many various “reasons” have you had now, all unsupported?  keep trying, Lorax.  Christian, Norse pagan, whatever you call yourself, it seems that deceit is all you have.   

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Offline Lorax

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #85 on: February 25, 2012, 04:58:03 PM »
  Christians claim that Quirinius' existence as a real person means that JC existed too.  It makes no sense to anyone who has a functioning brain that does not have a presupposition to support, but *this* is the significance that Christians assign to Qurinius.

I had originally taken this to mean that even if Christians were right (Qurinius being real, means Jesus is real) that argument would still be wrong, because "nobody with a functioning brain" would make that conclusion

This would be a healthy and cogent thing to say on the way to admitting "no, there is no significance to Quirinius"

I could interpret it another way I suppose. something like Christians say Quirinius existed, but nobody with a functioning brain would believe Quirinius actually did exist. which would be a sensible thing to say, but factually incorrect.

Or I could interpret it to mean that you believe the Historicity of Quirinius is the central lynchpin of Christian defenses about Jesus, and that they have gathered (presumably all of them) to assign this significance to the case for Quirinius and if therefore you can prove it false you can discredit all of christian apologetic at once.

This would be an argument that i could only describe as regoddamndiculious

These are the only three interpretations I can see here, I tried to guess the kindest one in order to give you the benefit of the doubt. But i don't want to put the wrong one on you again. Would you please tell me what you meant?

Quote
  In that they must coopt real events and make up things to try to provide evidence for their messiah,  by declaring dates for events that are not supported by facts,  for getting facts about real events wrong (like the nonsense a Roman census would make everyone return to the city of their birth) this establishes that there is little reason to consider any claim by a Christian without considerable doubt and additional research.


Again I must say I'm perplexed. I tried to taken the kindest interpretation and guessed that you must be saying that in order to defend the argument that Quirinis is, as he was described in the bible they would have to mix dates around and get facts wrong. and that therefore the argument is doublewrong.

I suppose you could also mean that nothing talked about in the bible is historically true (on a warpath following "Q doesn't exist")

Or you could be saying since that argument is the central lynchpin, and it's false that therefore:

Quote
The stories in the gospels were made up long after the supposed events occured.  There is no evidence to support the existence of Jesus Christ, the lynchpin of the Christian faith.


This is a good statement. I don't understand how the paragraph above it is supposed to support it, but I suppose I could interpret it in a couple of ways.

It could be a declaration of victory, having successfully demolished the lynchpin.

It could be you stamping your feet and insisting you're right.

it could be a minor premise setting up a nice if P then Q for what's coming next.

Quote
If JC can be doubted to exist and doubted strongly, with no evidence to support that he did exist, this helps dismantle the Christian faith since it can be demonstrated that this religion is no more supported by evidence than any other. 

This is true.

Correct. If this is true, then that it true.

Yes

Offline velkyn

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Re: When Was Jesus Born Again?
« Reply #86 on: February 27, 2012, 10:46:00 AM »
This would be a healthy and cogent thing to say on the way to admitting "no, there is no significance to Quirinius"
  I love how you try to intimate that something is not “healthy or cogent” when it disagrees with you, Lorax. 

Quote
I could interpret it another way I suppose. something like Christians say Quirinius existed, but nobody with a functioning brain would believe Quirinius actually did exist. which would be a sensible thing to say, but factually incorrect.

Or I could interpret it to mean that you believe the Historicity of Quirinius is the central lynchpin of Christian defenses about Jesus, and that they have gathered (presumably all of them) to assign this significance to the case for Quirinius and if therefore you can prove it false you can discredit all of christian apologetic at once.

This would be an argument that i could only describe as regoddamndiculious
Yep, it is pretty ridiculous and it’s a lovely strawman argument that you’ve created for yourself.  Congratulations! 

You’ve managed to ignore what I actually said which is quite simple. 

Quote
Christians claim that Quirinius' existence as a real person means that JC existed too.  It makes no sense to anyone who has a functioning brain that does not have a presupposition to support, but *this* is the significance that Christians assign to Qurinius.
No claim of any “lynchpin”.  No claim of all of the other ridiculous things you’ve made up. 

Sicne the rest of your post is dependent on your strawman, I’m not going to bother.  I’m quite happy to watch you immolate yourself.
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