I was just wondering if you could answer some of these questions. Keep in mind I don’t expect you to answer every single question but maybe a couple answers would help. I recently compiled most of the complaints from a very unusual website called Honestly at the end of the day none of these points really have an impact on the authenticity of Christianity, it is just an individual who seems to see a problem when the Bible is silent on a topic or event. Where one book of the Bible is silent another one fills in for what was not mentioned. Also was Solomon 12 when he became king of the United Monarchy? Thanks alot

Dio, Roman History 60 verse 6 contradicts Suetonius, Claudius 25. on Jews and Christ (Chrestus)
• Acts does not mention Melite
• Titus anticipates a get together with the saints but Paul is still in jail?
• Luke mentions Cauda then says that Paul when to Syrtis which is 400 miles away
• Felix and Festus or Caesarea not mentioned in Epistles
• Letter by Lysias to Felix copied by Luke 23:13-16
• Papias a bishop of Hierapolis never mentioned Paul and lived a few miles from Colossae
• Pausanius (2nd century historian) does not mention Christians or Jews in Corinth
• Paul does not list Peter as one of the 27 people to meet in Rome in Romans
• Felix and Festus or Caesarea not mentioned in Epistles
• Josephus does not mention Paul
• Paul says twelve days he spent away from Caesarea while Luke says fifteen
• Acts does not mention Paul saying he was in Caesarea
• The Province of Cilicia in Acts is a historical problem?
• Mark and Matthew do not mention Judas brother of James
• Matthew not mentioned in Pauline writings
• Titus anticipates a get together with the saints but Paul is still in jail?
• Acts does not mention Ananias
• Jude is not mentioned in Acts
• Acts portrays unity in Corinth while Paul seems to not like being involved
• Paul is not named in the letter to Felix by Lysias
• Paul was contradictory when it came to the role of Women
• Acts never says Crispus and Gaius were chief rulers of the synagogue
• Complaints on verses concerning whether Paul baptised Crispus and Gaius
• Revelation by John does not mention Paul
• Justin Martyr never mentioned Paul


Thanks for writing.

This web site makes some points that bear at least some consideration. However, we need to start by getting some perspective. In studying historical documents, we need to remember the truism that absence of evidence does not equate to evidence of absence. For example, in you little letter, you did not mention your mother. If I use the logic of the points being made at this website, I can assume it is in doubt whether or not you have a mother. You did not mention where you were born. Using the logic of this website, we should be skeptical that you were born on the earth, as you do not mention the country you were born in. Now, of course, I am using hyperbole, but the “evidences” below are of this sort. Let me address a couple of the omissions mentioned below.

1. It is not my job as a believer to explain why one Roman historian contradicts another. Here is the bottom line on this one. Suetonius mentions Chrestus and Dio does not. This is evidence that Christ lived and had a sufficient impact (especially in Asia Minor, where Suetonius spent some time) for Suetonius felt compelled to mention his followers. The fact that Dio did not mention Jesus Christ no more means that he did not live than the fact that Dio did not mention Pontius Pilate means that he did not life. Absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence.

2. Acts does not mention Melite does not even deserve a response.

3. Titus anticipates a future get together because Paul anticipated a future get together. Did it happen? I do not know. Paul had not broken any Roman law, so anticipating his release was a very reasonable thing.

4. Luke mentions Cauda??? Where does he mention Cauda? This must be a typo.

5. What possible reason would Paul have for mentioning Festus or Felix when nearly all of his letters were written before he even met these gentlemen? The ones which were written later (1, 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon) were written when he was in Rome, at which point there is almost no conceivable reason he should mention these men and the place Caesarea which was two thousand miles away.

6. Papias had a personal and close relationship with John as they both lived in Ephesus. He was probably born after Paul died, as he lived until after AD 120. Papias mentions those he knew, not those he did not know. What could be more natural? Is this supposed to be evidence that Paul did not live? Even the most diehard skeptics agree that Paul lived.

7. Is the writer trying to claim that there were no Jews of Christians in Corinth? No sane person would claim that there were no Jews of Christians in Corinth. Is that the point? I have written hundreds of letters since I lived in San Diego. I do not think I have ever mentioned Jews in San Diego. Neither have I mentioned Baptists that I can remember. Is that evidence that there are no Jews or Baptists in San Diego? What kind of logic is this? If Christianity or Judaism were the large majority in Corinth, one might reasonable expect them to be mentioned by Pausianus. This is not evidence, plain and simple.

8. Paul does not mention Peter in Rome because Peter almost certainly had never even been in Rome at that time. Romans was written probably in the late 50s AD and it is almost certain that Peter was still in Jerusalem at that time.

9. Josephus does not mention Paul and that probably because Paul did not even live in Palestine. Why would Josephus, writing about the history of the Jews in Palestine, mention Paul who never even lived there. He was from Tarsus which is in Southern Turkey today, near the Northwest corner of Syria. How is this evidence of anything? What would have been surprising is if Josephus had mentioned Paul, as he never lived in Palestine.

I am going to skip.

10. The book of Revelation does not mention Paul. True, but Paul had already been dead for 30 years when John wrote. John also did not mention his mother in Revelation. Does this mean she did not exist. In fact, it also does not mention Peter or James or any of the other apostles. If this is evidence, then I do not even know how to respond.

I think that you can completely dismiss all this “evidence” because it is literally not evidence of anything. In a majority of his absences, we can logically predict that there is no conceivable reason for the things to even be mentioned. In the minority of absences, we can think it is possible that they might have been mentioned, but absolutely no compelling reason they should have. If this is the best evidence a skeptic has that Jesus did not live, then that should make Christians very confident indeed.

By the way, we at ARS have an entire course on the life of Jesus which discusses the historical evidence for Jesus.  You should check out the link on the front page of the site for the ARS apologetics certificate.  This evidence is so strong that it would require almost supernatural faith to conclude that he did not exist. You should congratulate people who believe that Jesus did not live. Their ability to have faith should inspire you to believe even more in the providence of God.

I believe most scholars have Solomon closer to 20 when he took the throne of Israel.

John Oakes

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