|Author||Author's Origin||Work||Date work was written|
|Josephus||Jewish Historian||Antiquities||around 90 A.D.|
|Tacitus||Roman Historian||Annals||around 110 A.D.|
|Pliny the Younger||Roman Governor||Letters to Tarsus||around 100 A.D.|
|Ignatius||Bishop of Antioch||Letters to Christians||around 110 A.D.|
|The Talmud||Various||Jewish teachings||???|
|Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others, [or, some of his companions]; and when he had formed an accusation against them as breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned...|
|But now Pilate, the procurator of Judea, removed the army from Cesarea to Jerusalem, to take their winter quarters there, in order to abolish the Jewish laws.|
A procurator is: A person who manages the affairs of another by virtue of a charge received from him.
Luke said in Luke 3:1 that Pilate was the governor of Judea - They agree !
|Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man; for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was [the] Christ. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day; as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.|
|Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name (Christians) had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome (PAUL !!!), where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired.|
The answer will surprise you - Pliny recorded it for us....
It is my practice, my lord (i.e., Tarsus), to refer to you
all matters concerning which I am in doubt. For who can better give
guidance to my hesitation or inform my ignorance?
I have never participated in trials of Christians. I therefore do
not know what offenses it is the practice to punish or investigate,
and to what extent.....
Meanwhile, in the case of those who were denounced to me as Christians, I have observed the following procedure: I interrogated these as to whether they were Christians; those who confessed I interrogated a second and a third time, threatening them with punishment; those who persisted I ordered executed....
In the same letter, Pliny explain how he identifies "real Christians":
|An anonymous document was published containing the names of many persons. Those who denied that they were or had been Christians, when they invoked the gods in words dictated by me, offered prayer with incense and wine to your (= the Emperor) image, which I had ordered to be brought for this purpose together with statues of the gods, and moreover cursed Christ -- none of which those who are really Christians, it is said, can be forced to do -- these I thought should be discharged.|
The reason why Pliny wrote the letter to Tarsus was to see clarification for the crimes charged to Christians. Pliny wrote the following to Tarsus:
They (i.e, the Christians arrested) asserted, however, that
the sum and substance of their fault or error had been that
they were accustomed to meet on a fixed day before dawn and
sing responsively a hymn to Christ as to a god,
and to bind themselves by oath,
not to some crime, but not to commit fraud, theft, or adultery,
not falsify their trust, nor to refuse to return a trust
when called upon to do so....
(My note: Pliny must have a hard time finding a crime here....)
I therefore postponed the investigation and hastened to consult you. For the matter seemed to me to warrant consulting you, especially because of the number involved. For many persons of every age, every rank, and also of both sexes are and will be endangered. For the contagion of this superstition has spread not only to the cities but also to the villages and farms....
Remember, the canon of the New Testament contains works of persons who knew Jesus directly, or knew someone who knew Jesus directly.
The works by the early church fathers are not included in the New Testament, but they do have some historical value in that they do substantiate and corroborate the claims in the Bible. (Clearly, writing from non-Christian sources are more valuable in this respect and we have seen examples above).
|... Jesus Christ, who was descended from David, and was also of Mary; who was truly born, and did eat and drink (My note - in other words: Jesus is not a ghost or some fantasy). He was truly persecuted under Pontius Pilate; He was truly crucified, and [truly] died, in the sight of beings in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth. He was also truly raised from the dead, His Father quickening Him, even as after the same manner His Father will so raise up us who believe in Him by Christ Jesus, apart from whom we do not possess the true life. Descended from David, and was also of Mary; who was truly begotten of God and of the Virgin, but not after the same manner. For indeed God and man are not the same. He truly assumed a body; for "the Word was made flesh," and lived upon earth without sin. For says He, "Which of you convicteth me of sin?" He did in reality both eat and drink. He was crucified and died under Pontius Pilate. He really, and not merely in appearance, was crucified, and died, in the sight of beings in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth.|
So do not expect the Talmud to say "nice" things about Jesus....
The following are some webpages that contain information on Jesus in the Talmud.
On the eve of Passover they hanged Yeshu* [= Jesus].
And an announcer went out in front of him for forty days,
saying: 'He is going to be stoned, because
he practised sorcery
and enticed and led Israel astray.
Anyone who knows anything in
his favor, let him come and plead in his behalf.'
But not having found anything in his favor,
they hanged him on
the eve of Passover.
* One version of this text actually says 'Yeshu the Nazarene.'
The Talmud confirms:
|Aspect of Jesus' Life||Author||Name of Writing||Date Written|
|Called Christ||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Had a brother James||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Wise man||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Wrought "surprising feats"||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Teacher of truth||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Won over many Jews and Greeks||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Pilate presided over trial||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Accused by those of high standing among the Jews||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Pilate condemned Him to death||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Followers still loved Him after His death||Josephus||Antiquities of the Jews||~A.D. 93|
|Suffered crucifiction||Tacitus (Roman historian)||~115 A.D.|
|crucified during the reign of Tiberius||Tacitus (Roman historian)||~115 A.D.|
|Condemned by Pontius Pilate||Tacitus (Roman historian)||~115 A.D.|
|"Mischevious Superstition" checked for a moment, then broke out again in Judea and Rome||Tacitus (Roman historian)||~115 A.D.|
|Christians endured persecution by Nero||Tacitus (Roman historian)||~115 A.D.|
|Christians tortured and killed||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Christians met regularly on a fixed day||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Christians chanted verses alternately among themselves||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Christians honored Christ as if a god||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Took upon themselves oath to abstain from theft, robbery, adultury...||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Roman citizens to female slaves were Christians||Pliny the Younger (Roman governor)||Book 10 of letters||~111 A.D.|
|Darkness at 6th hour of day (explained away by eclipse)||Julius Africanus (quoting historian Thallus)||Julius Africanus quotes from Thallus' 3rd book of histories||Julius Africanus wrote ~221 A.D.; Thallus' history was written ~52 A. D.|
|Darkness during daytime was "cosmic" or "world event"||Tertullian|
|Great eclipse at 6th hour of day and earthquakes in Bithynia and Nicea in 4th year of 202nd Olympiad (i.e., 33 A.D.)||Phlegon (Greek from Caria)||~137 A.D.|
|Considered false messiah||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Practised magic||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Healer||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Miracle worker||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Condemned to death||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Born of Roman soldier and Mary||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Had 5 disciples||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Not all sages had made up mind whether he was a heretic or deceiver in the early Rabbinic period||Jewish Rabbi's||Talmud||200 to 500 A.D.|
|Aspect of Jesus' Life||Author||Name of Writing||Date Written|
|Jesus was God||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
|Jesus was human||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
|Persecuted under Pontius Pilate||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Last letter before martyred||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
|Crucified||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Last letter before martyred||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
|Raised from dead||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Last letter before martyred||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
|Said that those who believed in Him would be raised||Ignatius (bishop of Antioch in Syria)||Last letter before martyred||Ignatius martyred before 117 A.D.|
So even if you don't believe anything in the Bible, you must still believe that Jesus DID LIVED !!! Jesus is JUST AS REAL A PERSON AS Julius Caesar.
Obviously, the non-Biblical sources will cast them in a negative light because they are hostile testimonies - jsut like Holocaust-deniers and some Japanese official who want to teach falsehood
The only difference between Biblical and non-Biblical sources is how they interpret Jesus' actions -