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In The God Who Wasn't There the narrator says how Paul knew largely nothing of what we call the story of Jesus.That he only knew of Christ erected on the cross, his resurrection, and the ascension. Yet, Paul did not place any of these events on Earth.

Is this claim supportable from primary evidence?

Could someone elaborate on this period immediately following the death of Jesus?

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There are quite a few problems with the video. John does not "clearly" borrow from Mark at all. The fact that Mark mentions a prophecy of the Temple being destroyed does not mean it was written after it was destroyed, anymore than Isaiah 7:14 had to be written after Jesus was born. Actually the book of Acts tells us about history between 30 and 70 A.D. as well. Just because Paul doesn't mention the story of Jesus doesn't mean he didn't know about it. Paul definitely places the death, burial and resurrection in the physical realm--not the mythical. – Narnian Dec 28 '12 at 20:58
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Jesus wasn't a Levitical Priest, but one according to Melchizidek. To suggest that Paul doesn't believe Jesus was ever a human being is absurd. There was no "forgotten" period either. No myth created 40 years later could have ever caused the explosion of Christianity against so many forms of persecution. This video is just completely inaccurate in too many ways to number. – Narnian Dec 28 '12 at 21:02
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You could probably ask a dozen or more questions from this, but this video is wrong on all of them. – Narnian Dec 28 '12 at 21:08
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This reads like a "refute-this" question, which is not a good fit for the site. The video is a typical atheistic view, and per the FAQ answers are expected to come from a Christian view. Since the content of the video would be dismissed as drivel by any Biblical scholar, it would be pointless to address it other than to point out that it doesn't represent an accepted Christian view. This isn't the place to argue Truth, and it's not constructive to argue every made-up claim of some skeptic. – David Dec 28 '12 at 21:12
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@AffableGeek - Good edits. The addition of that one question and the change to the title made a huge difference. – David Jan 2 '13 at 4:18

Paul clearly knew about the life of Jesus, as he affirms this in his own words in many places:

  1. Paul knew the words spoken by our Lord Jesus

    Acts 20:35: I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of Jesus, how He said, It is more blessed to give than to receive

  2. Paul knew about the Communion service and what had happened that night

    2 Corinthians 11:23-25 : I have received of the Lord that which also I delievered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed took bread: and when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, Take eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also He took the cup when He had supped saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me

  3. Paul knew about John the Baptist's mission - this clearly shows that he knew the current events that had occured in his time.

    Acts 13:24: When John had first preached before his coming the baptism of repentance to all people of Israel. And as John fulfilled his course, he said, Whom think ye that I am? I am not he. But, behold there cometh one after me, whose shoes of his feet I am not worthy to loose.

  4. Paul knew about the death of Jesus, what caused it, how He was executed and His resurrection

    Acts 13:27-31 For they that dwell at Jerusalem, and their rulers, because they knew him not, nor yet the voices of the prophets which are read every sabbath day, they have fulfilled them in condemning him. And though they found no cause of death in him, yet desired they Pilate that he should be slain. And when they had fulfilled all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre. But God raised him from the dead: And he was seen many days of them which came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are his witnesses unto the people.

  5. Paul knew what the prophets, and Moses had written about Christ. We can see from the Gospels multiple instances where it is quoted "as written by prophet". So Paul clearly knew about all such events

    Acts 28:23 And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening.


All emphasis in italics and bold have been added and are not present in the Bible

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Paul's Epistles are always written to churches who have already heard the gospel and the story of Jesus. They are written to encourage and correct those congregations. There is no need for him to repeat every detail of his initial Gospel teaching in every epistle. That would be redundant.

As far as the claim that Paul knew no details of Christ's life:

23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 1 Corinthians 11

This is a specific and direct counter-example to the premise. Paul here refers to the what he and the Corinthians already knew. This reinforces the fact that Paul and the churches he planted were familiar with details from Christ's earthly ministry.

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I remember starting to watch that video years ago. It wasn't long before the laughable, easily-refuted claims made me realize it was not actually meant to stand up to scrutiny, just foster doubt in people who didn't have any better information. – Solocutor Apr 19 at 18:19

Faulty Premise: Paul knew nothing of Jesus

Paul summarizes his own life story in Galatians 1:

11 I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that the gospel I preached is not of human origin. 12 I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ.

13 For you have heard of my previous way of life in Judaism, how intensely I persecuted the church of God and tried to destroy it. 14 I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers. 15 But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased 16 to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles, my immediate response was not to consult any human being. 17 I did not go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before I was, but I went into Arabia. Later I returned to Damascus.

18 Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Cephas and stayed with him fifteen days. 19 I saw none of the other apostles—only James, the Lord’s brother. 20 I assure you before God that what I am writing you is no lie.

By his own testimony, Paul had at least two weeks' direct contact with Peter (aka Cephas) and James, two obvious eyewitnesses of Christ. Even if you discount the personal encounter with Jesus in Acts 9, Paul clearly had access to those who did know Christ.

Indeed, in his time, Paul was being accused not of not knowing who Jesus was, but rather of trying to claim the other disciples' experiences of his own. Hence Paul going out of his way in vs. 19 to distance himself from the apostles...

When he says earlier that the Gospel he preaches is not of human origin, he is referring to his direct encounter with Christ, through whom we surmise he learned of Christ. Later, Peter, who clearly knew Christ, attests that the encounter was genuine and that this is the same Gospel.

To say Paul knew nothing of Christ simply does not square with the primary sources.

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You may also want to check out: christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/11436/… and christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/9485/… to get a sense of the timeline – Affable Geek Dec 28 '12 at 21:21
    
By the way, the Hebrews 8:4 reference is (a) not written by Paul and (b) there is an error in putting Jesus as the "he" in that verse. (At time point 2:17) – Affable Geek Dec 28 '12 at 21:25
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I gave up at 3:00 when the video claims "Everyone forgot." Um, no. The Gospels were all written by eyewitnesses (Matthew & John) or by people with direct access to the Apostles (Mark = Peter). Possibly, you could put Luke=Paul in the secondhand category (again, discounting Paul's experience), but then you leave out what is probably the most human of the Gospels - not the one with the most audacious claims. – Affable Geek Dec 28 '12 at 21:28
    

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