RE: [asa] Josephus, Herod, and Jesus

From: Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com>
Date: Mon Dec 07 2009 - 12:12:14 EST

RE: http://www.christian-thinktank.com/quirinius.html

Thanks for that link again, Murray. I'll try to spend some time to fact check it. If anyone knows of any major errors in there, I'd appreciate the heads-up to save me some time. It does directly confront the date-difference claims.

...Bernie

-----Original Message-----
From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On Behalf Of Murray Hogg
Sent: Friday, December 04, 2009 4:24 PM
To: ASA
Subject: Re: [asa] Josephus, Herod, and Jesus

And, again, a helpful treatment from Glen Miller at A Christian Think-Tank - who studies this commonly raised issue at length;

http://www.christian-thinktank.com/quirinius.html

Blessings,
Murray

> Bernie,
>
> [Sarcasm alert] Why THANK you for bring this to our attention. I'm SURE
> no one has EVER noticed this before, and certainly no thoughtful people
> have EVER applied themselves to think through it [Sarcasm over}
>
> :-)
>
> Seriously, amazon.com----buy some commentaries.
>
> You're starting to grow on me, Bernie.
>
> Pete
>
>
> On Dec 4, 2009, at 7:02 PM, Dehler, Bernie wrote:
>
>> As for dates- something interesting from Wikipedia:
>>
>>
>>
>> RE: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nativity_of_Jesus
>>
>> "Matthew's account places the birth during the reign of Herod the
>> Great, who died in 4 BC, but Luke dates it to the census of Quirinius
>> ten years after Herod's death."
>>
>>
>>
>> Bernie
>>
>> (Friend of the ASA)
>>
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>
>> *From:* asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu <mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>
>> [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] *On Behalf Of *George Cooper
>> *Sent:* Thursday, December 03, 2009 6:18 PM
>> *To:* ASA
>> *Subject:* Re: [asa] Josephus, Herod, and Jesus
>>
>>
>>
>> If the lunar eclipse shortly before the death of Herod, reported by
>> Josephus, is correct, then 2 BC is a problem. The Jan. 20th lunar
>> eclipse took place at 2 pm that day, so it would have not have been
>> noticeable by anyone for thousands of miles from Judea.
>>
>>
>>
>> 5 BC:
>>
>> Mar. 23: Total Lunar eclipse, 9:30 pm, 38 deg. alt., in Virgo
>>
>>
>>
>> 4 BC
>>
>> Lunar eclipse (1/3 umbral passage) on Mar. 13th, but not till 3:30 am
>> (33 deg. alititude).
>>
>>
>>
>> 3 BC: none
>>
>>
>>
>> 2 BC:
>>
>> Jan 20:** **Lunar eclipse _below horizon_ in daytime (2 pm)
>>
>>
>>
>> 1 BC:
>>
>> Jan. 10: Total Lunar eclipse at 2:30 am.
>>
>>
>>
>> Dec 29: Lunar eclipse beginning at 3 pm (daytime), umbral at 4:52 pm
>> (Sun at - 2 deg alt, Moon at 1 deg. alt.); penumbral only at 6 pm (Sun
>> at - 15 deg, Moon at 13 deg.)
>>
>>
>>
>> This last one would have had the largest audience and would give more
>> time to allow the reported events surrounding Heord to take place
>> prior to Passover. Surprisingly, the daytime eclipse is more dramatic
>> than a night time lunar eclipse because the eclipsed portion
>> disappears, reportedly.
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> "Coope"
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> --- On *Thu, 12/3/09, John Walley /<john_walley@yahoo.com
>> <mailto:john_walley@yahoo.com>>/* wrote:
>>
>>
>> From: John Walley <john_walley@yahoo.com
>> <mailto:john_walley@yahoo.com>>
>> Subject: Re: [asa] Josephus, Herod, and Jesus
>> To: "Ted Davis" <TDavis@messiah.edu <mailto:TDavis@messiah.edu>>,
>> asa@lists.calvin.edu <mailto:asa@lists.calvin.edu>
>> Date: Thursday, December 3, 2009, 5:12 PM
>>
>> From what I recall Larson also put Jesus in 2 BC.
>>
>>
>>
>> John
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>
>> *From:* Ted Davis <TDavis@messiah.edu <mailto:TDavis@messiah.edu>>
>> *To:* asa@lists.calvin.edu <mailto:asa@lists.calvin.edu>
>> *Sent:* Thu, December 3, 2009 3:28:23 PM
>> *Subject:* [asa] Josephus, Herod, and Jesus
>>
>> A few days ago there was some discussion of the star of Bethlehem,
>> and someone brought up the idea that Josephus did not actually
>> imply that Herod died in 4 BC. I looked up the source for this
>> information: David W. Beyer, "Josephus Reexamined: Unveiling the
>> Twenty-second Year of Tiberius," in Chronos, Kairos, Christos II,
>> ed. E. Jerry Vardaman (Mercer Univ Press, 1998), pp. 85-96.
>>
>>
>>
>> Beyer examined all of the editions of Josephus he could find in
>> the British Library and the Library of Congress, including
>> manuscript versions as early as the 12th century that predate
>> Gutenberg. He found, interestingly, that the editions prior to
>> 1544 all put the death of Philip (Herod's son) in the 22nd year of
>> Tiberius' reign (i.e., 36 AD), and most of them also say that he
>> reigned for 32 or 35 years. Later editions usually have both of
>> these numbers wrong; they have 20 years and 37 years,
>> respectively. Differences in the latter number (the length of
>> Philip's reign) probably reflect different ways of calculating the
>> length of his official reign, based on when he was proclaimed
>> tetrarch (1 AD) vs when he effectively ruled in that capacity (4
>> AD). Coins offer evidence of a 37-year reign which, if reckoned
>> from his father's death, would put that event in 1 BC. Beyer
>> offers further evidence for that date, and concludes that Jesus
>> was born in 2 BC--the date unanimously favored by patristic authors.
>>
>>
>>
>> Other essays in the same book, however, argue no less vigorously
>> for alternatives: Jesus was born either in 6 BC or even as early
>> as 12 BC (a suggestion I have never heard before that seems
>> outrageous to me). In each case some of the evidence seems
>> convincing, but they can't all be right. I remain agnostic about
>> the year of the nativity, but the information about Josephus is
>> very interesting and I tend to favor 2 BC as the best suggestion.
>>
>>
>>
>> Another essay defends the historicity of the slaughter of the
>> innocents, which Josephus did not mention--though he did mention
>> numerous other, much larger, massacres that Herod orchestrated.
>> All of the evidence I am aware of suggests that the murder of
>> children in Bethlehem was small potatoes, from Herod's point of
>> view, and I have no reason to put modern scepticism over St
>> Matthew on this one.
>>
>>
>>
>> Ted
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>

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Received on Mon Dec 7 12:12:50 2009

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