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Jesus Was Crucified Because Disciples Were Armed, Bible Analysis Suggests

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  • KingsGambit
    replied
    If, just for the hypothetical sake of argument, it turned out that Jesus did intentionally arm his disciples to provoke his arrest... I don't see why concluding this would be anti-supernatural bias or anything of the like. Jesus knew what the plan was for him; that was the point of him praying so intensely in Gethsemane. God can and does use "natural" processes to bring about his work.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jesse
    replied
    Originally posted by Darth Executor View Post
    That's just Jesus telling Peter he'll get himself killed. It's not a decree or even a literal statement since not everyone who lives by the sword dies by the sword.



    What do you mean "supposedly"? What do you think Peter was trying to do with the sword? Open a sushi restaurant?

    And there's nothing interesting about that, Peter was motivated by base, human concerns for his friend. So when Jesus was there and in danger Peter had fighting spirit. That spirit faltered when he was left on his own. It's an entirely normal human reaction.
    I think there is something to be said about Christ telling Peter to put the sword away, but not to get rid of it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jesse
    replied
    Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
    IIRC it wasn't uncommon at all for people to carry weapons in order to defend themselves against attacks by bandits while traveling (like from Galilee to Jerusalem).
    Exactly Rogue06. It's really odd that Martin would even try to pass something like his off knowing how unfounded it is.

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  • rogue06
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    Oops on my part. A grand typo on my part!!!!. But if you or KingsGambit had any Biblical sensibility (intelligence), you would have corrected me and pointed me to the correct chapter for the verse I directly quoted as opposed to your desire/s to grandstand!!! The text is Mt 26:52, but I'd point out that in your interrogation you missed the point of Jesus' comment...and my comment.
    Get over yourself apostoli Such a thin-skinned reaction to a good natured bit of teasing.

    Leave a comment:


  • rogue06
    replied
    Originally posted by Jesse View Post
    Source: Newsweek


    Dale Martin, a professor of religious studies at Yale University, says that this aspect of stories about Jesus, as told in the gospels, has received too little attention, but could alone explain Jesus’s execution and also show that the man from Nazareth was not the pacifist he’s usually made out to be.

    The biblical books of Mark and Luke both state that at least one (and probably two or more) of Jesus’s followers was carrying a sword when Jesus was arrested shortly after the Last Supper, at the time of the Jewish festival of Passover. One disciple, Simon Peter, even used his sword to cut off the ear of one of those arresting Jesus, according to the Gospel of John.

    This militant behavior almost certainly wouldn’t have been tolerated by the Romans, led by the prefect Pontius Pilate, Martin tells Newsweek. For example, historical documents show that it was illegal at the time to walk about armed in Rome and in some other Roman cities. Although no legal records survive from Jerusalem, it stands to reason, based on a knowledge of Roman history, that the region’s rulers would have frowned upon the carrying of swords, and especially wouldn’t have tolerated an armed band of Jews roaming the city during Passover, an often turbulent festival, Martin says.

    “Just as you could be arrested in Rome for even having a dagger, if Jesus’s followers were armed, that would be reason enough to crucify him,” says Martin, whose analysis was published this month in the Journal for the Study of the New Testament.

    Harold Attridge, a former dean of the Yale Divinity School who wasn’t involved with the paper, tells Newsweek that Martin’s analysis is sound and that “likely the Romans would have been severe against someone seen as a political threat,” as almost certainly would have been the case with Jesus.

    The paper “reminds us that the early followers of Jesus and perhaps Jesus himself were inevitably thrown into conflict with arbitrary state terrorism by the Roman Empire [in which] Romans practiced both random and intentional violence against populations they had conquered, killing tens of thousands by crucifixion,” says New Testament scholar Hal Taussig, who is with the Union Theological Seminary in New York.

    Martin’s paper addresses an even more important question, says Bart Ehrman, a professor at the University of North Carolina: Why were Jesus’s followers armed at all, especially during a religious festival?

    Martin makes the case that Jesus and his followers were likely expecting that an apocalyptic showdown was on the horizon, one in which divine forces (in the form of angels) would destroy Rome and Herod’s temple and usher in a holy reign. And this might require some fighting by Jesus’s disciples, he adds.

    It sounds pretty far-out, but a similar scenario is described in parts of the Book of Revelation. And this scenario of “heavenly forces joined by human forces...was an expectation in a central document of the Dead Sea Scrolls,” a group of texts that shed light on the thinking of various Jewish peoples around the time of Jesus, Martin adds.

    Indeed, many academics who study the historicity of the Bible believe “that Jesus was an apocalyptic Jewish prophet who was expecting an imminent arrival of the kingdom of God on Earth,” Martin says.

    The paper also suggests that Jesus may have been in favor of fighting, at least in this apocalyptic instance, Ehrman tells Newsweek.

    “It’s making me rethink my view that Jesus was a complete pacifist,” he says. “And it takes a lot for me to change my views about Jesus.”

    But not everybody agreed with Martin’s points. While the paper is an “extraordinary contribution,” Taussig says, it’s “almost impossible for us to know many of the things professor Martin proposes—whether they are historically valid or not.”

    Establishing the real history behind the books of the Bible is what this branch of scholarship is all about, and it’s no easy task, considering that the Gospels were written 40 to 60 years after the life of Jesus, by people who didn’t witness the events firsthand. And as you might imagine, there is much disagreement amongst scholars.

    Paula Fredriksen, a historian of ancient Christianity at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, says Martin’s paper has several holes “that you could drive trucks through.”

    For one, she doesn’t think it’s legitimate to assume that since carrying arms was illegal in the city of Rome, the same laws necessarily applied in Jerusalem. Control of the city wasn’t too tight, she argues, and the Roman prefect visited only during Passover, to help keep the peace. And during this time it probably would’ve been impossible to police the thousands of Jews that spilled into Jerusalem.

    “I can’t even imagine what a mess it was,” she says.

    Furthermore, she says, the Greek word used in the Gospels that Martin interprets as sword really means something more akin to knife. And these could be easily concealed, she adds. “Only professionals,” like soldiers, “carried swords,” she says.

    But she appreciates Martin for “working his argument,” as that’s what people who study the history of the Bible do. The inevitable controversy and argument is “fun,” Fredriksen says. “It’s a contact sport.”

    Source

    © Copyright Original Source


    Well this is certainly an interesting way of looking at things. I do disagree with Paula Fredriksen on one thing. The word machaira can be used for both "knife" and "sword". They probably were more akin to daggers.
    IIRC it wasn't uncommon at all for people to carry weapons in order to defend themselves against attacks by bandits while traveling (like from Galilee to Jerusalem).

    Leave a comment:


  • Darth Executor
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    An interesting observation: At Mt 56:52 we learn that on commanding Peter to put away his sword Jesus decreed "all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword".
    That's just Jesus telling Peter he'll get himself killed. It's not a decree or even a literal statement since not everyone who lives by the sword dies by the sword.

    A more interesting observation: The same fellow that drew his sword (Peter) to supposedly defend Jesus, was prone to deny Jesus when his own existence was threatened.
    What do you mean "supposedly"? What do you think Peter was trying to do with the sword? Open a sushi restaurant?

    And there's nothing interesting about that, Peter was motivated by base, human concerns for his friend. So when Jesus was there and in danger Peter had fighting spirit. That spirit faltered when he was left on his own. It's an entirely normal human reaction.

    Leave a comment:


  • One Bad Pig
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    Of interest to me is why there are so many protestant ministers coming out of American seminaries who in pursuing their "qualifications" ignore what is plainly written in scripture and pursue absolute bull excrement????
    "Religious Studies" =/= "seminary"

    I'd lay odds that most people who pursue a Religious Studies degree are not Christians, let alone aspiring ministers.

    Leave a comment:


  • robrecht
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    Oops on my part. A grand typo on my part!!!!. But if you had any Biblical sensibility (intelligence), you would have corrected me to the correct chapter for the verse I directly quoted as opposed to your desire to grandstand!!! The text is Mt 26:52, but I'd point out that in your interrogation you missed the point of Jesus' comment...and my comment.
    What interrogation of mine are you referring to? I don't think I have interrogated anyone here. But, who knows, maybe I do not have intelligence to understand this? You do realize I was only joking around, right?
    Last edited by robrecht; 10-29-2014, 10:57 AM.

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  • apostoli
    replied
    Originally posted by robrecht View Post
    Very interesting indeed! My Bible is missing some 30 chapters of the gospel of Matthew!
    Oops on my part. A grand typo on my part!!!!. But if you or KingsGambit had any Biblical sensibility (intelligence), you would have corrected me and pointed me to the correct chapter for the verse I directly quoted as opposed to your desire/s to grandstand!!! The text is Mt 26:52, but I'd point out that in your interrogation you missed the point of Jesus' comment...and my comment.
    Last edited by apostoli; 10-29-2014, 10:37 AM.

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  • robrecht
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    An interesting observation: At Mt 56:52 we learn ...
    Very interesting indeed! My Bible is missing some 30 chapters of the gospel of Matthew!

    Leave a comment:


  • apostoli
    replied
    Originally posted by seanD View Post
    I think what he means is that why make up theories about why Jesus was killed when it's told to us in the gospels? Nothing about his disciples being armed was brought up as a charge, therefore we have to disregard historical reliability of scripture and make up theories outside of scripture.
    An interesting observation: At Mt 56:52 we learn that on commanding Peter to put away his sword Jesus decreed "all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword".

    A more interesting observation: The same fellow that drew his sword (Peter) to supposedly defend Jesus, was prone to deny Jesus when his own existence was threatened. Possibly why Jesus at one time chastised Peter saying "Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men." (Mt 16:23).

    Leave a comment:


  • Jesse
    replied
    Originally posted by seanD View Post
    I think what he means is that why make up theories about why Jesus was killed when it's told to us in the gospels? Nothing about his disciples being armed was brought up as a charge, therefore we have to disregard historical reliability of scripture and make up theories outside of scripture.
    It's a good question. I think it stems from the fact that Dale Martin is so heavily invested in his "Apocalyptic Jesus" hypothesis that he tries to hold onto any strand he can think of. Even if it is something as bizarre as trying to push that Christ and his disciples were trying to start an armed revolution against the Romans.

    Leave a comment:


  • seanD
    replied
    Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
    What?
    I think what he means is that why make up theories about why Jesus was killed when it's told to us in the gospels? Nothing about his disciples being armed was brought up as a charge, therefore we have to disregard historical reliability of scripture and make up theories outside of scripture.

    Leave a comment:


  • KingsGambit
    replied
    Originally posted by apostoli View Post
    Of interest to me is why there are so many protestant ministers coming out of American seminaries who in pursuing their "qualifications" ignore what is plainly written in scripture and pursue absolute bull excrement????
    What?

    Leave a comment:


  • apostoli
    replied
    Originally posted by Jesse View Post
    I am not sure. I do not know much about the pacifist argument for his arrest. Though Christ's commandment to carry swords wouldn't have provoked the Romans because it was legal for citizens to be armed.
    One aspect of the confrontation on Jesus' arrest that seems to be largely ignored, is the fact, that when Peter drew his sword and cut off the high priest's (Annas') servant, Malchus', ear, Jesus healed the temple guard!!!! And told Peter to put away his sword.... (John 18:10-11).

    Of interest to me is why there are so many protestant ministers coming out of American seminaries who in pursuing their "qualifications" ignore what is plainly written in scripture and pursue absolute bull excrement????

    Leave a comment:

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