>Robert> Of course, an angry crowd of Jews would shout 'stone him!', not >Robert> 'crucify
>Robert> Of course, an angry crowd of Jews would shout "stone him!", not
>Robert> "crucify him!". Surely they would not cry out for a Jewish man
>Robert> to be executed by the Roman enemy in a manner incompatible with
>Robert> Jewish law.
>No, they'd just stone him on the spot, like they did with Stephen.
Which of course would itself be a violation of Jewish law, to just
plain-out lynch the accused without trial before the Sanhedrin. Herod
himself, before he became emperor, was hauled before the Sanhedrin
because he had some bandits executed without benefit of trial; this made
Herod guilty of murder, under Jewish law. (This is from Josephus, the
exact citation is in "The Making of the Messiah"). Knowing that he
himself risked being executed, Herod fled.
The account of Steven's death, as given in Acts, is not credible as it
stands. A formal trial is occurring before the Sanhedrin, Steven being
accused of blasphemy and heresy, the punishment for which being stoning.
We are told that a formal trial has begun, we are told that the accused
suffered the punishment for the offense with which he was charged, but
we are expected to believe that it was not through judicial process,
but rather through extra-judicial murder, that this happens. I cannot
believe this; the parsimonious explanation is that the accused was
found guilty and executed, all exactly according to Jewish law. (Why
would this be misrepresented? My argument is: to better defend the
"cruci-fiction" story, the fiction that Jesus was crucified by Romans
rather than actually 'stoned, then hanged on a tree' by Jews.' If the
author admits that the Jews executed Steven by stoning AFTER Jesus'
death, on what grounds can one then maintain that Jesus could not have
met the same fate?)
Can you imagine the proceedings of Stevens' trial that the author of Acts
would have us believe?:
Rabbi #1: Oh, that speech of his burned me up. I say we halt the trial
right here and lynch him.
#2: I second the motion. Let's just kill him, never mind the
#3: But that would violate The Law, given to Moses by G** himself.
Let's just find this guy guilty, then we can stone him!
#1: Oh, (expletive deleted) The Law, let's just kill him!
#2: Yes, (expeletive deleted) the trial, let's just kill him!
If anyone finds this credible, I cannot imagine why.
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank