Worldly Talk

Civil discussion and debate on real world events and issues.


hypothetical science question

   
Well there is the Icon of the Hodegetria, a portrait of Mary painted from life by St Luke. Then again the icon was first mentioned in the fifth century, so it's authenticity is a little doubtful. The same can be said of pretty much any relic, including items such as the Holy Prepuce which might yield DNA suitable for comparison testing with a body.

The simple answer is that if a tomb was found, and if a body was found within it, there would be no way of actually proving that it was Jesus, and no way of proving that it wasn't.

Well, there would be ways of proving it wasn't, depending on what was found. If the man turns out to be from the 11th century, it is pretty certain it wasn't him. If DNA reveals he is not of Jewish matrilineal decent, it wasn't him. If the bones turn out to be from a woman...
but assuming a certain degree of similarity that does seem to be the concensus.

It is very simple. You sequence the DNA and check for a functioning L-gulonolactone oxidase gene. This gene that synthesizes vitamin C is broken in humans. A divine Jesus Christ would inherit at least one copy of this gene from His Holy Seed. His Holy Seed is Perfect because it was emitted sinlessly from God. A Perfect seed would have a functioning copy of this gene rather than a broken one.

[SPOILERBUTTON="Alternative"]You sequence the Y chromosome and check to see if it has the usual nonfunctional gene copies.

There is no recombination of the Y chromosome during reproduction and humans have numerous nonfunctioning genes in addition to functioning copies. The Y chromosome of a divine Jesus Christ can only have come from His Holy Seed. His Holy Y Chromosome does not have the brokenness exhibited by human Y chromosomes because it is necessarily Perfect. [/SPOILERBUTTON]

This assumes Jesus' divinity, as mentioned before, a divine Jesus, according to scriptures, would not be there, as he would have ascended into heaven. Thus testing for divinity by any means is only signifigant in the extreemly unlikely event that it yields positive results, further complicating teh question of how the body came to be there.

And of course man didn't evolve, he was created by god in his current form, complete with non-functioning genes, which means they are meant to be there, in that form, and shouldn't be considered 'broken'.

Actually I'm fairly sure that they have already found a contender for Jesus' tomb (sans body), or was that disproved?

Found them. Courtesy of Wiki. Tombs of Jesus

There is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (which is the official Catholic version), the Garden Tomb (the Protestant version), Roza Bal (in India), the Tomb of Jesus in Shingo (in Japan) and the Talpiot Tomb.

The last one is argued to be the tomb of Jesus and his family. You'll like the bit about the statistical analysis done to determine the likelihood of that particular combination of names occurring by chance. This one did have bodies, but I'm not sure what testing, if any, was done on them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by silveroak View Post
If DNA reveals he is not of Jewish matrilineal decent, it wasn't him. If the bones turn out to be from a woman...
The "real" Jesus doesn't have to correspond to everything we know about the "myth" Jesus, so he doesn't necessarily have to have been Jewish or male. In fact, if it had been a woman, it would make sense that the gender would have been changed in later communication to attract more followers. The same is possible for the jew thing.

I believe there is patchy historical evidence substantiating the existence of a Jewish, male preacher called Jesus at the appropriate time.

Given the Christian persecution of Jews it seems extremely unlikely that they would alter myth to make Jesus Jewish.

And if we're entertaining the possibility that the 'real' Jesus was a pagan woman, we may as well abandon the idea of there being a 'real' Jesus at all.

The Talpiot tomb has not had a chance to investigate the bodies, the israeli authorities are denying them permission, but that was what orriginally sparked my thoughts on what would they do if they could examine them?

C-14 dating could give you a decent ballpark of the age of the bodies, and potassium-argon dating could give you an idea of the age of the rocks and, especially, the rough date that any particular carving in the tomb was exposed. Sequencing any DNA is unlikely to yield any conclusive results due to a lack of preservation. You could get something, but nothing near a full genome. There are a few other techniques that could be used to narrow down the age of the bodies and their rough area. So the best you could definitively state was that there was a man from the area around the Sea of Galilee who lived some time around 0CE who was buried there and named Jesus (or more likely, Joshua/Yesua since it's unlikely that a period inscription on Jesus's tomb would have been in Latin instead of Hebrew/Hebrew-Aramaic.)




 

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