Thursday, November 27, 2008

...on historic reliability of Bible

Slaughtering of the Innocents myth
by: dhux99 03/06/03 11:52 pm
Msg: 140025 of 140025

"Finally, (iii). Matthew's claim that Herod the Great ordered the slaughter of the children of Bethlehem is unlikely because the Gospel of Matthew is the only historical source to report this alleged event. In response to questioning by Strobel on this point, McRay offered various reasons why the incident would not have been of interest to other writers. If the story had been included in other New Testament documents I might buy McRay's explanations, but the Slaughter of the Innocents is not even mentioned in the New Testament outside of Matthew. That fact is more likely on the hypothesis that the Slaughter of the Innocents never happened than on the hypothesis that the Slaughter of the Innocents is historical. Even Strobel admits it is "difficult to imagine" that no other writer mentioned this event, on the assumption that the Slaughter of the Innocents really happened (p. 140).

"My response is to an earlier posting of a reference to this material today. The slaughtering of the innocents is part of the early Jesus mythology (this is not arguing that Jesus did not exist). It is borrowing from other stories of the slaughtering of the innocents, and makes entertaining fictional drama. It's the stuff of fairy tales as well."

dhux takes a very literalistic mosaic view on deciding every matter by two or three witnesses.

He calls St Matthew one human witness without noticing that he is supported by two or three divine witnesses: the Father and the Son ... and the Holy Ghost.

If this is not supposed to be judaising misappliance of that mosaic law, but some kind of theory of knowledge, it is twisted as well.

If we have two witnesses saying the same thing independently of each other, this is an argument something did happen. If we have only one witness, this is in ordinary and sane theory of knowledge no argument proving it did NOT happen. Even the total absense of witnesses is no argument something did not happen - only an argument for not believing something as if it were a witness account of the thing. As for truth being the stuff of fairy tales that's old news. Do you suppose fairy tales are made up of only fictions? I read a Lithuanian fairy tale today, with a story similar to that of king Midas. It involved eating and it involved getting what one asked for and being sorry for it. Both motifs occur in many fairy tales besides: they are clearly the thing fairytales are made of. Must we conclude that eating and being sorry for getting what one wanted are merely fictions that cannot occur in real life?

Hans Georg Lundahl