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APPENDIX I - Jesus From Wikipedia


Jesus From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Possible year of birth
Further information: Anno DominiCommon Era, and Year zero
Two independent approaches have been used to estimate the year of the birth of Jesus, one by analyzing the Nativityaccounts in the Gospels of Luke and Matthew along with other historical data, the other by working backwards from the estimation of the start of the ministry of Jesus, as also discussed in the section below.[5][63]

In their Nativity accounts, both the Gospels of Luke and Matthew associate the birth of Jesus with the reign of Herod the Great, who is generally believed to have died around 4 BC/BCE.[63][64] Matthew 2:1 states that: "Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king" and Luke 1:5 mentions the reign of Herod shortly before the birth of Jesus.[63] Matthew also suggests that Jesus may have been as much as two years old at the time of the visit of the Magi and hence even older at the time of Herod's death.[65] But the author of Luke also describes the birth as taking place during the first census of the Roman provinces of Syria andIudaea, which is generally believed to have occurred in 6 AD/CE.[66] Most scholars generally assume a date of birth between 6 and 4 BC/BCE.[67] Other scholars assume that Jesus was born sometime between 7–2 BC/BCE.[68][69][70][71][72]

The year of birth of Jesus has also been estimated in a manner that is independent of the Nativity accounts, by using information in the Gospel of John to work backwards from the statement in Luke 3:23 that Jesus was "about 30 years of age" at the start of his ministry.[3][5] As discussed in the section below, by combining information from John 2:13and John 2:20 with the writings of Josephus, it has been estimated that around 27-29 AD/CE, Jesus was "about thirty years of age".[73][74] Some scholars thus estimate the year 28 AD/CE to be roughly the 32nd birthday of Jesus and the birth year of Jesus to be around 6-4 BC/BCE.[3][5][75]
However, the common Gregorian calendar method for numbering years, in which the current year is 2011, is based on the decision of a monk Dionysius in the six century, tocount the years from a point of reference (namely, Jesus’ birth) which he placed sometime between 2 BC/BCE and 1AD/CE.[76] Although Christian feasts related to the Nativityhave had specific dates (e.g. December 25 for Christmas) there is no historical evidence for the exact day or month of the birth of Jesus.[77][78][79]
Possible year and place of death
A 1466 copy of Antiquities of the Jews

A number of approaches have been used to estimate the year of the death of Jesus, including information from theCanonical Gospels, the chronology of the life of Paul the Apostle in the New Testament correlated with historical events, as well as different astronomical models, as discussed below.
All four canonical Gospels report that Jesus was crucified inCalvary during the prefecture of Pontius Pilate, the Romanprefect who governed Judaea from 26 to 36 AD/CE. The late 1st century Jewish historian Josephus,[53] writing inAntiquities of the Jews (c. 93 AD/CE), and the early 2nd century Roman historian Tacitus,[54] writing in The Annals(c. 116 AD/CE), also state that Pilate ordered the execution of Jesus, though each writer gives him the title of "procurator" instead of prefect.[55]

The estimation of the date of the conversion of Paul places the death of Jesus before this conversion, which is estimated at around 33-36 AD/CE.[4][92][93] (Also see the estimation of the start of Jesus' ministry as a few years before this date above). The estimation of the year of Paul's conversion relies on a series of calculations working backwards from the well established date of his trial before Gallio in Achaea Greece (Acts 18:12-17) around 51-52 AD/CE, the meeting of Priscilla and Aquila which were expelled from Rome about 49 AD/CE and the 14-year period before returning to Jerusalem inGalatians 2:1.[4][92][93] The remaining period is generally accounted for by Paul's missions (at times with Barnabas) such as those in Acts 11:25-26 and 2 Corinthians 11:23-33, resulting in the 33-36 AD/CE estimate.[4][92][93]

For centuries, astronomers and scientists have used diverse computational methods to estimate the date of crucifixion,Isaac Newton being one of the first cases.[56] Newton's method relied on the relative visibility of the crescent of the new moon and he suggested the date as Friday, April 23, 34 AD/CE.[94] In 1990 astronomer Bradley E. Schaefer computed the date as Friday, April 3, 33 AD/CE.[95] In 1991, John Pratt stated that Newton's method was sound, but included a minor error at the end. Pratt suggested the year 33 AD/CE as the answer.[56] Using the completely different approach of alunar eclipse model, Humphreys and Waddington arrived at the conclusion that Friday, April 3, 33 AD/CE was the date of the crucifixion.[57][96]

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