Thursday, December 22, 2022

Peter Williams Responding To Tom Holland On Some Christmas Issues

Peter Williams recently appeared on Glen Scrivener's podcast to respond to another podcast on which Tom Holland discussed Jesus' childhood. I added some comments of my own on the page for Glen's podcast. But YouTube often doesn't put up posts that you submit or will put a post up, then remove it. Here's something I posted that went up initially, but seems to have disappeared since then:

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Mary's Pregnancy Showing In Luke 1:56

Several years ago, I wrote about how well the annunciation accounts in Matthew 1 and Luke 1 align with each other, contrary to the false claims of many modern critics. I want to supplement that post with another point that I don't recall having made before.

The pregnancy of a woman typically begins showing around three to four months in. And Luke 1:56 has Mary leaving Elizabeth to return to Nazareth around that time in the pregnancy of Mary. That's historically credible and fits well with Matthew's material. If Mary's pregnancy had begun showing shortly before the time of Luke 1:56, and that showing resulted in Joseph finding out that Mary was pregnant, then it would make sense for Joseph to have received his annunciation at that point. Once he sent word to Mary that he knew what was going on and intended to go forward with the marriage, Mary would have considered it safe to return to Nazareth. Matthew's account assumes that Mary didn't say anything to Joseph about the situation, so that he discovered the pregnancy in a roundabout manner. Luke's account of Mary heading to Elizabeth's house after Gabriel's annunciation and not returning to Nazareth until around the time when her pregnancy would start to show aligns well with Matthew. Both gospels suggest Mary didn't make the pregnancy known to the general public or Joseph in particular. Luke implies that something happened to make Mary think it was safe to return to Nazareth, but doesn't tell us what it was, while Matthew provides the explanation (the revelation received by Joseph). It makes a lot of sense for these events to have occurred at the time Luke 1:56 specifies.

Sunday, December 18, 2022

How much does Mark's gospel suggest that Jesus' relatives were unbelievers?

Critics often cite the gospel of Mark against a traditional Christian view of the childhood of Jesus. Supposedly, all of the living members of Jesus' immediate family, including his mother, are portrayed as unbelievers in Mark. That's supposed to contradict what we see in the other gospels, and the unbelief of Jesus' family is considered evidence against what Matthew and Luke say about miracles surrounding Jesus' childhood. Why would Jesus' family not believe in him if those miracles had occurred?