The Crucifixion; hoax or the first big con?

Welcome to the first in Q & A and to start the ball rolling my first question is:

Was the crucifixion of Jesus a hoax or confidence trick gone wrong?

Those that know me know I’m an atheist by conviction and  consequently take a great interest in religion. I have definite thoughts on the crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth, I have no doubt there was such a man and that he was executed.  I shall give my arguments in a few days time and what I believe.

To comment and put your argument please use the comment button at the end of this post. I’m looking forward to this 🙂

9 thoughts on “The Crucifixion; hoax or the first big con?

  1. Brian,
    I am surprised that you think the crucifixion of Christ might be a hoax. I would have thought an old atheist like you would more likely question the veracity of the resurrection of Christ. I think that it would be easier to stage a fake resurrection, than a fake public execution such as a crucifixion. There is enough evidence in non Christian writings, for me to believe that Christ lived and was indeed crucified – Tacitus, Suetonius, Pliny, Tallus, Phlegon (all Roman), Mara Bar-Serapion (Syrian), Josephus (Jewish), Lucian of Samosate (Greek) and The Babylonian Talmud (Jewish). I have a little more difficulty with the resurrection.
    Neill.

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    1. Thank you Neill I can now see why you didn’t make Pope, having a little difficulty would surely have excluded you. I think you would have put our chum George in great danger had you have continued your studies, I think you have a more realistic approach than he will ever have; that being said I intend in a few days to add Part II to this question and will give my argument hoping to spur some further discussion on this subject which I must admit I enjoy.

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  2. I don’t think that the evidence is so strong that the possibility of a hoax can be eliminated. It seems to me reasonably likely that none of Jesus’ followers witnessed the crucifixion since they were all been in hiding. They might even have fled the city. All they might have known was that Jesus had been arrested. Had Jesus merely been beaten and released, he might well have thought it wiser to slip away quietly to start a new life somewhere else rather than defying the Romans by trying to hook up with his followers again. If his followers didn’t see him again, they might simply have assumed that he had been crucified.

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    1. Thanks for your comments Vinnyjh, I must admit that I’d never given any thought to the disciples and their involvement at the time. You have given me something else to think and ponder. Another viewpoint is more than welcome and if you feel like expanding on your theory please don’t hesitate to do so.:o)

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      1. I don’t want to go too far with it since it’s pure speculation, but when you are dealing with sources that are as problematic as the New Testament writings, there are any number of plausible scenarios that cannot be eliminated. If none of his followers saw him after he was arrested, none of them could attest to his crucifixion, but they would have had no reason to doubt it. Maybe the Romans were doing a general roundup of troublemakers that night rather than specifically targeting Jesus and he managed to slip away and return to Galilee where he went into hiding. Maybe some of his friends knew he had escaped but told everyone that he had been crucified so that the authorities wouldn’t look for him. Maybe someone spotted him and those same friends claimed that he had returned from the dead. I don’t see how we could assess the probability of that as any less than him actually being raised from the dead.

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    2. There are so many ifs and buts to this event and we will never really know what really happened. I have friends who’s faith is so strong that they accept it without any problem whatsoever and others who believe strongly yet have doubts some of which are very deep.

      I find it all very interesting.

      Thank you once again for joining me, I hope you will drop in from time to time to add your comments to other Questions, I promise that they wont all be this deep and controversial.

      Cheers,

      Brian aka LordBeariOfBow

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  3. I’m sorry that you feel I mocked your beliefs; believe me that is never my intent, I have every respect for everybody’s personal beliefs be they Christian, Muslim Confucianism atheism or any other belief; well perhaps I draw the line at ‘Scientology’ but I shall not go into that right now.

    To me it was a matter of Religion or Politics to get the ball rolling and if my first choice is offensive to you and anybody else I apologize but I must admit that it is my first favourite so it got the “nod”.

    I sincerely hope and trust that this has not put too much strain on our acquaintance Jean 😉

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  4. I’m sorry you feel that way Jean, I think your contribution has been just what I was hoping for, some of the expressions we use obviously have a different meaning in the US English. An example that always comes to mind here is the word root. In the US it means I believe cheer your team on; as in “Root, Root, Root for the home team” in Australia root has a decidedly different crude meaning.

    I plan to put my views out in the next day or so and I will welcome any and all criticisms.

    As to your suggestion for some amusing topics I intend to start one on one of my favourite TV series “The West Wing” closely followed by comics and comedians in the English speaking community and I hope you will join in these with great gusto.

    I do apologize for any misunderstandings between us, I do consider your contribution to the discussion as very worthy, interesting and honest, just the comments I hope to get on any subject and to pull them would be not only a shame but a waste of serious comment.

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All comments appreciated and acknowledged

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