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First, the assumption that accounts of Jesus don't appear until the references in the gospels is a little off. There were many gospels written, some before and some after the four that appear in The Bible. Jesus is also mentioned in several Roman texts dating from around the time of his life, verifying his actual existence. Then there's a document often referred to as the "Q" document, which is really just a collection of writings attributed to Jesus himself; it is believed that the earliest gospels may have stemmed from this document. Still, there's precious little writing from Jesus' time mentioning him or his works. This is likely because, during his life, Jesus was an itinerant preacher, not unlike a hundred other preachers in his poor land. His life, and even his death at the hands of the Romans, wasn't the explosive, life-altering event it's seen to be today. It wasn't until his followers branched out to other lands and peoples and Christianity began to take firm hold that Jesus' life became a famed event. Hence, you have the gospels written years down the line when someone finally took the spoken tradition of conversion and story-telling and put it down on paper. Several other issues to consider include: * Many people at that time were illiterate ... they could neither read nor write. Information about Jesus was spread often through word of mouth. Much of the New Testament are epistles, or letters, written by Paul and the other apostles to churches that they couldn't get to in the near future. (Paul, in fact, never made it back to some of the churches to whom some of his letters were written.) * The historical books, namely the Gospels and Acts, were written down after the fact, probably because the writers were too busy spreading the Good News by word of mouth. * We do not necessarily have every historical record written at the time of Jesus. Much has been lost through the centuries due to wars, natural disasters, and simple deterioration of the surfaces upon which they were written. == == The epistles of Paul were written in the fifties, about twenty years after his death. Mark's Gospel was written in the mid sixties, about thirty years after his death.

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โˆ™ 2009-07-31 23:12:19
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Q: Why is there no written reference to Jesus until seventy years after his supposed death?
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