Question: Are there any strong extra-biblical sources for the life/works of Jesus of Nazareth? Can you give me the authors/sources? The answer is an emphatic yes.  We have at least nine non-Christian sources on Jesus in the first and early second century.  There are, of course, dozens of Christian sources on the life of Jesus […]

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Question: A friend sent me this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNf-P_5u_Hw, about this movement Zeitgeist, I was looking for information about them.  They believe that Jesus is a mythical story. What do you think about this? Is there any information that I can read and  give to my friend that suport the existence of Jesus versus this video? Answer: I […]

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Question:  Hello, I had recently been in a discussion with someone who doubts the historicity of Jesus. When I tried to tell him that his facts were wrong by pointing out to videos on youtube about his historicity, he tried to counter with this:      "I’ve seen plenty of those videos before. They never have all […]

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Question: 1. Regarding foreshadows, how much historical evidence is there for existence of many of the early prefigures and foreshadows; and for the accuracy of the biblical accounts? For example, are there any other known accounts regarding Moses and the Exodus, the existence of Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Melchizedek? Obviously I realise these are very early […]

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Question: Is contemporary evidence required to establish the historicity of a person from ancient history, such as Jesus Christ or Alexander the Great? I was wondering if contemporary evidence (besides the Bible) is required to establish authenticity of an ancient historic figure. Answer; I suppose that whether contemporary evidence is required will depend on the […]

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Question: Hey, I love your website…I’ve found it very resourceful.  I have a couplequestions that have been brought up that I can’t seem to give an answerfor.  First, I’ve heard and read what Josephus had to say about Jesus.  Hementions him, true.  But, someone asked me, "If Josephus took the time toaccount to mention Jesus, why […]

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Question: How can historians be sure about specific years in history?  For example, how did you find the decree of Artaxerxes (the king to issue first instruction to rebuild Jerusalem) to have taken place in 458 BC specifically?  I don’t think the Bible mentions these dates. Is there a special way or a tool for this? Answer: There are some […]

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Question:  I have a friend who believes that Daniel 11 gets Antiochus’ death incorrect. Is this true? I tend to believe he is wrong however I don’t know the history all that well.  Here is what he gave me http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_11  The second paragraph speaks about details of his death and how they do no match up with what […]

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Question: I read "Daniel, Prophet to the Nations" recently and was quite awestruck by the prophesies!  I’ve been reading online that the Christian persecution under Domitian was historically uncertain and debated. Although the early church fathers routinely mention Domitian, the persecution is seemingly absent from the writings of Tacitus and Suetonius (and other Roman historians).  […]

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Question: I just read an article that puts forth some pretty convincing evidence that places the validity of Pliny the Younger, Tacitus, and Suetonius and a few other well known historians that many apologetics use to help confirm the existence of Chirst into question. Just wondering what the names of the other non-christian scholars are to […]

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Question: I wonder just how much evidence some scholars need.  What reasoning is required to decide that these two men (Imhotep and Joseph) were not one and the same?  What are the odds that any two of the facts are about these two would be identical?  What about three, four or five? Well there are even […]

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 Note;  Each of four questions is followed by an answer, so there are four separate Q & As below.  Question #1:  I noticed on your power point concerning prophesy that when talking about Daniel’s vision of four beasts you referred to ancient kingdoms I thought this vision referred to the end times or does it have a […]

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Question:  My question is do we have any answer to the question of the Pharaohs in Genesis/Exodus that some say no names so no way to verify. and because of no names no reliability. Any help on this? Answer: A good question.   For whatever reason, the fact is that Exodus does not name the Pharaoh […]

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Question:  (a very long one!!!)  The books of the Bible are written by people claiming inspiration from God.  Many people claim inspiration from God or supernatural forces. Muslims claim the Koran is divinely inspired, Mormons claim their Book of Mormon is divinely inspired, and I am sure many pagan sects say that their "book of […]

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Question: What year did Jesus get baptised? Answer: We cannot say with absolute certainty the year Jesus was baptized, but using biblical data we can give a date with an uncertainty of one year or, at most two or three years. To establish the date of the baptism of Jesus, one must first establish the […]

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Question:  Is there any evidence outside of the Bible that Jesus was real? Answer:  A number of non-Christian historical sources mention Jesus of Nazareth, from as early as the late first century AD.  This includes Jewish historian Josephus, the Jewish OT commentary known as the Talmud, and Roman historians, especially Tacitus and Seutonius.  These writers […]

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Why is it that the latest book published on the archeology of Palestine, namely "The Bible Unearthed" by Finkelstein & Silberman flatly declares that the Exodus and the conquest of Canaan never happened ? Answer: You will have to ask them.   I have enough trouble explaining why I say what I say, never mind taking […]

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Editor’s note: Since this article was written, a new paper which appears to identify Darius the Mede as Cyaxares II the Mede has been published. This appears to more or less settle the question. We recommend you read this paper.  It is at http://www.academia.edu/9787699/Darius_the_Mede_A_Reappraisal Question: Why is it that “The Cambridge History Of Judaism” knows nothing […]

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Question: How, John, can you state so confidently that hostages were taken and that some items from the temple were taken." This clearly is what you would like to be able to establish in order to be able to clear up the conflict between  2 Kings 24:1 and Daniel 1:1. The author of Daniel transfers things that […]

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Question:  1. I was looking a little at a book called "A History of the Jews" by Abram Leon Sachar. He seems to suggest that the Bible’s account of Solomon is incorrect, exaggerated, and biased. He says his genius was never of a moral or spiritual quality, but the Bible says otherwise. He also says […]

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Question: I read an article by a Christian scholar who believes the Egyptian God Imhotep to be none other than Joseph in the Bible, deified and exaggerated to fit Egyptian beliefs. The step pyramid, which was the first pyramid to ever be built in Egypt, is historically credited by the Egyptians to be the work […]

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Comment: The actions reported of Pilate in the Gospels bear no relation to the character of the Roman official depicted in Josephus. All you need to do,is look up every passage in Josephus where Pilate is involved and then compare the difference in personality and action between the man in Josephus and the Gospels. When […]

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Question:,I read an article by a Christian scholar who believes the Egyptian god Imhotep to be no one else than Joseph in the Bible, deified and exaggerated to fit Egyptian beliefs. The step pyramid, which was the first pyramid to ever be built in Egypt, is historically credited by the Egyptians to be the work […]

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Question:,You agree with me that there was probably some sort of oral tradition given to the Jews which did not make it into the Old Testament. (editor’s note: this is based on an earlier question and answer) I would like to ask you the following three questions:,1) What purpose do you think this oral tradition […]

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Comment: 1) The Medes became Zoroastrian before the Persians 2)Daniel 6;9 has King Darius signing a decree that no prayer should be directed to anyone except the king. This would be unthinkable for a Zoroastrian and therefore the account cannot be historical. 3) The word for king is totally separate from the word for governor […]

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Question: I detect an anachronism in the burial practice described in 2 Chron 16:14. To the best of my knowledge there is no Jewish custom recorded elsewhere regarding this clearly ongoing practice. What therefore is its explanation? Answer We do not know all the cultural practices of the Philistines. If the Bible were to mention […]

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Question: There is evidence of proto-Israelite settlement in Canaan around 1400BC. The Iron Age in Canaan is dated to 1150BC at the earliest. How then can Moses be the author of Leviticus when he reports God as speaking of iron in 26;19 when it was not to be discovered until 200 years after his death […]

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Question: According to Jer 43 Egypt would be conquered by Babylon, but secularhistorians attribute this conquest to the Persians. Do you have any infoon this? Answer: Your information is correct. The Persians/Medes did conquer Egypt under Cambysses, the son of Cyrus in 525 BC. However, the Persians were not the first to conquer Egypt. The […]

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Question: Can you help with history of city of Corinth and at present what’s their condition? Answer: Corinth is on the isthmus separating the Peloponesian peninsula from mainland Greece. For this reason, it was in important and wealthy city from ancient times. During the 500’s BC it played a role as the or one of […]

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Question: I realize that astrology and the Zodiac today is something that God would not condone, but I heard some argue that the Zodiac was originally a biblical concept that was corrupted during the time of the tower of Babel. Is there any proof supporting this claim? ;Also, in my Rome and Jerusalem class, we […]

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Question: What is the significance of the angel that appears to Daniel in chapter 10 telling him that he was summoned 21 days ago but was held up by “the Prince of the Kingdomof Persia”? I believe every scripture is there for a reason and God does not bother with insignificant issues, so what is […]

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Question: Where can one find the book where the kings in the old testament such as David, Solomon and other prominent leaders were mentioned, such as BOOK OF THE HISTORY OF THE KINGS OF ISRAEL, HISTORY OF THE KINGS OF JUDAH? Answer: These books have been lost. There were several books used as sources for […]

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Question: In your section on the 10 horns-the 11th being Domitian, what historical sources can you site that show that Vespesian and/or Domitian subdued Otho and Galba? I have only been able to find sources for Vitellius’s overthrow by armed forces who supported Vespesian. Could the three who were subdued actually be ordinal… For example, […]

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Question: I am currently a college student and have taken several religion courses. Often I find information that bothers me. One is that it is often very biased due to the teacher. What has been bothering me recently is some information that has been presented to us, and claimed as “factual.” It is said that […]

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Question: I just recently shared my faith with a man who claimed you cannot trust the Bible as it is just a theory. He also holds that history has been altered and that the stories of the New Testament were most likely alteredt. I told him about the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in […]

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Question: Will you give me evidence on whether “Christianity is the foundation of liberty”? Answer: I will need to guess what the person from whom you are quoting is trying to claim. I am going to guess that this person is saying that the indirect influence of Christianity on human culture and means of government […]

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Note: This is a very long question. The answer is several paragraphs down the page. I am presently taking a Comparative Religion course on the New Testament and have been struggling with some of the themes that have surfaced so far. Our course text is “The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to Early Christian Writings” […]

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Could you make a good summary for the evidences to support the Luke 2 account of the census decreed by Caesar while Quirinius was ruling that would have forced Joseph and Mary to go to Bethlehem from Nazareth? I have read so much about the topic. I do see support that it could have happened, […]

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