An Antecedent

21/03/2009 at 17:44 1 comment

Readers should be directed to a rather helpful summary of the leading hobby horsistians by Loren Rosson. LR refers us to some of the classic statements of The Big Three (Geoff Hudson, Leon Zitzer and Steven Carr).

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A Geoff Hudson Special Edition Extra Hudson

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Leon Zitzer  |  28/03/2009 at 13:35

    What I stand for is close attention to the evidence. What I oppose is the arrogance of scholars towards the evidence — scholars who believe that they have the power and right to rewrite the evidence of Jewish history and the NT. It is an old rhetorical trick to ridicule someone’s postion without any discussion of the evidence he provides.

    Consider the following: I have pointed out that in no field would it be allowed to use a record of an ancient accusation as evidence for the truth of that accusation. This applies to Luke 6:16 (the only place in all four Gospels where Judas is called a traitor) and to Mark 14:1 where Jewish leaders are accused of conspiring to kill Jesus. Both these pieces of evidence are merely a record that once upon a time such an accusation was made. But they could have been the result of slander. The accusation itself is useless for proving what really happened. (And if you view these stories as fiction, a story about someone who was falsely accused is still a possibility. The accusation proves nothing.)

    You need a pattern of evidence beyond the accusation. This would be standard reasoning in any other field. Yet someone like Sir NT Wrong is beside himself with wrath when I make this point. He thinks that Luke 6:16 is a piece of evidence that helps prove that this was about a story of betrayal. Who is being wacky? Wrong’s position would be thrown out of court in any legitimate academic discipline.

    I go on to point out that the great majority of evidence concerning Judas is ambiguous. There are almost no unequivocally negative pieces of information about him. And Mark is missing every single feature of a story of betrayal. Making Judas out to be a traitor is based on rewrtiing the ambiguous information in the Gospels into negative information.

    This is scholarly arrogance. They rewrite the evidence. Yet it enrages people when I point this out. No one has a good evidentiary response to what I say. The only way to deal with me is mock me. Everybody spends from what they’ve got. Scholars mock because that is all they have. I base my remarks on the solid evidence.

    Leon Zitzer

    Reply

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