Was Daniel’s “Darius the Mede” Really Xenophon’s “Cyaxares II”?

Was Daniel’s “Darius the Mede” Really Xenophon’s “Cyaxares II”?  An Examination of a New Look at an Old Theory بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْم “That very night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was slain, and Darius the Mede took over the kingdom, at the age of sixty-two.” - Daniel 5:30-31             This article will discuss a …

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A further comment on Jesus the messiah, Isaiah 53, Psalm 22

Blogging Theology

Christians point ‘to passages in the Bible that talked about one who suffered and was then vindicated, passages such as Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22. Jews, though, had a ready response: these passages are not talking about the messiah. And you can see by reading them for yourself, in fact the word messiah never occurs in them.

Whether or not you choose to understand these passages as referring to the messiah, even though they make no explicit reference to the messiah, is beside my point at this stage. My point here is that no Jew before Christianity was on the scene ever interpreted such passages as referring to the messiah. The messiah was to be a figure of great strength who overwhelmed the enemy and set up God’s kingdom; but Jesus was squashed by the enemy. For most Jews, this was decisive enough. Jesus wasn’t the messiah, more or less by…

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Early New Testament Papyri Now Given Later Dates

Calling Christians

Two very early and important manuscripts of the New Testament, p66 and p75 have effectively with growing consensus by authoritative scholars, been given later date ranges extending into the 4th century CE. This is a problem.

Brief Introduction

Early New Testament documents were written on papyrus (pl. papyri), which in and of itself is a very fragile material. Summarily, it means they are difficult to preserve and quick to be destroyed (by accident). Due to so few documents existing, we cannot know much to be certain about the early New Testaments in circulation (we cannot speak of a New Testament until Marcion in the 2nd century).

Two important manuscripts, p66 and p75 have traditionally been given very early dates, somewhere around the 2nd century CE. To put this into perspective, we generally have had only roughly 7 or so manuscripts from this time period that are distinctively New Testament texts…

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On Rabbits and Rumination: A Response to Christian Interpretations of Leviticus 11:5-6

On Rabbits and Rumination: A Response to Christian Interpretations of Leviticus 11:5-6 Originally Published: December 7, 2018 Updated: April 9, 2020 بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْم “The hyrax, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is unclean for you. The rabbit, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided …

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My reply to ‘On the Question of Christological and Theological Development in the Gospels’ by Denis

Blogging Theology

In his article published on Blogging Theology earlier today Denis attempted to refute some of the reasons scholars have for seeing Christological development in the gospels. I will focus on a few points by way of rebuttal. I assume the standard solution to the synoptic problem, namely that Matthew and Luke used Mark (and other sources) in the writing of their respective gospels.  For this article I focus on how Matthew used Mark.  (For introductions to the Synoptic Problem see here).

Examples of how Matthew uses Mark.

According to the dominant sources theories, Matthew preserves about 90% of the stories and passages found in Mark’s Gospel, but he edits/changes this material according to his purposes. Studying these editorial changes is the job of ‘redaction critics’ (the discipline is called redaction criticism).

Here are some examples of Matthew’s alteration of Mark. I have listed them in order of significance: minor…

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‘At a glance’ chronological and thematic summary of the 4 gospels from a Muslim perspective.

The chronology of the gospels from a Muslim perspective.

Blogging Theology

The Gospel of Matthew written around 80-85 AD. Author unknown. Used the gospel of Mark, the Q source and other material. Portrays Jesus as the new Moses who gives his disciples the true interpretation of the Mosaic Law and expects his disciples to keep it. The first book of the New Testament.

The Gospel of Mark written around 65-70 AD. Author: anonymous Greek-speaking Christian. The writer portrays Jesus as completely misunderstood by nearly everybody he encounters (compare Matthew). The first gospel to be written. The resurrection narrative in chapter 16 is not found in the earliest and best manuscripts, though it is still included in modern Bibles.

The Gospel of Luke written around 80-85 AD. Probably by a Greek-speaking Christian and companion of Paul. He uses Mark, Q and other sources to compile his gospel. Jesus is portrayed as a prophet and his teaching about God, salvation and sin is…

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Mark 13:32 and the “Omniscience” of the Holy Spirit

Mark 13:32 and the "Omniscience" of the Holy Spirit                        Over at the new "BloggingTheology", the Catholic apologist and blog contributor Denis Giron has published a short article in which he attempts to defend the belief in the "omniscience" of the "Holy Spirit".[1]  This is understandable, since for Christians, the "Holy Spirit" is one …

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