In AD 30 Jerusalem, was true witness-derived Jesus biography easily accessible, or even hard to avoid?

  • Question

    During the year AD 30, in the city of Jerusalem, were the facts of Jesus’ life, sayings, ministry, and his death in the air, such that the cards were stacked against misinformation taking over? Was witness authenticated testimony flourishing relative to any would-be lies, which were sparse or non-existent by comparison? Was the truth therefore easy to come by and become acquainted with, or perhaps even heard to miss—almost inescapable? Overall, rather than true Jesus-biography being elusive, did external conditions make acquiring it almost a given for the Jerusalem church, perhaps even virtually determining them to know Jesus’s main biographical truths? Were the accounts of Jesus’ life monopolized/dominated by living eyewitnesses and their testimony, especially that of the apostles?

“Yes, after all…
  • Acts 2 “You all know!” dates to AD 30

    Rather than being a later fabrication, the Acts 2:22-39 speech is primitive, dating to c. AD 30..

    A page will analyze these evidences:

    • In general, Acts 2-4 speeches are primitive.
    • It fits themes in Peter’s sermons.
    • Luke-Acts didn't invent it.
    • The speech matches Jewish sermons.
    • Their quoting Joel is mulitply attested.
    • The eschatology is primitive.
    • Jesus isn’t given theological titles.

    This is relevant because in this speech—specifically Acts 2:221—Peter etc. confidently asserts that Jesus’s essential biographical details were common knowledge to the audience at Pentecost in Jerusalem. Such a loud boast from Peter and company shortly after Jesus’s death makes little sense if he didn’t strongly believe it. And yet if Peter and company so believed the facts were well-known, then it is unlikely to have been a random unjustified belief; it was likely true.1, 2

    1. Acts 2:22Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know
    2. F.F. Bruce: “…one of the strong points in the original apostolic preaching is the confident appeal to the knowledge of the hearers (Acts 2:22) [The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable? (Eerdmans, 1960), 46.]
    3. Compare Lk 24, where Cleopas says “Are You the only one visiting Jerusalem and unaware of the things which have happened here in these days?” One might insist report is historically unreliable, but the case for its eyewitness-based authenticity is strong (forthcoming).
  • Jesus-bio witnesses+testimonies flourished in 1st church

    The Jerusalem church (led by Jesus’s apostles) was the gathering of most of the key witnesses to Jesus’s ministry and life. .

    A full page will analyze this evidence:

    • 1st church members were Jesus-bio witnesses.

    This is relevant because the 1st church was evangelistic about Jesus to the world, and was easily accessible (in addition to being a natural place to go learn Jesus-bio). So this ultimately contributes to the sparsity of lies/errors in relation to relevant truths circulating in AD 30 Jerusalem.

  • In general, Christians were honest about Jesus-bio

    In general, early Christians were honest when reporting on Jesus's life and deeds.1

    A full page will to analyze 4 arguments:

    • In general, early Christians were honest.
    • They desired to report honestly.
    • Wouldn’t invent the Jesus-bio as we see it.
    • Christians relayed witness testimony.

    This is relevant because they were the main source of circulating reports about Jesus in Jerusalem. So this ultimately contributes to the sparsity of lies/errors in relation to relevant truths circulating in AD 30 Jerusalem.

  • In AD 30 Jerusalem, witnesses killed any false rumors

    In the AD 30 Jerusalem area, witnesses of Jesus’s life (Mary, Peter etc.) would efficiently learn of and be able kill false rumors about themselves?.

    A full page will analyze 4 arguments:

    • 1st church strove to adopt witness Jesus bio.
    • Witnesses strove to install into 1st church their testimony.
    • 1st church strove to reject unvetted Jesus-bio.
    • 1st church members were Jesus-bio witnesses.

    For now, see this page. This is relevant Christians were in a polemically charged environment (yielding history-interested parties), and blatantly exposed lies tend to fade away the place of truths. This is isn’t an exceptionalness rule, but a general one; it contributes to the sparsity of lies/errors in relation to truths circulating in AD 30 Jerusalem.