I think the stories about Jesus don't even have to be based on an "itinerant preacher," because almost all of the Jesus stories are copies of myths about earlier messiahs, in much the same way our modern comic book superheroes all spring from the same iconography.
In my discussions/debates with believing Christians over the years, the argument they usually clung to was that there were alleged eye witnesses. As soon as I debunked the "eye witnesses" argument, they threatened me with the fire of hell!
Hmm, so Mohammed did not ascend from the Rock to Paradise? If Jesus was a fake, Mohammed must have been a real charlatan as he professed to follow Jesus as a prophet of Allah/God.
Actuallyu it is the thread topic that is weak when it comes to its wording.
Evidence that a large majority of Bible stories only suggests that the Bible is weak on evidence.
Whether Jesus actually existed i not negated by modern research, only that a large corpuis of texts
regarding him are weak. Remove all the unsubstantiated myths, and what is left neither proves nor disproves the man nor all of his acclaimed teachings.
The fact that practically every story about Jesus is ripped off from earlier savior & messiah myths -- some even sharing similar names -- leads me to suspect Jesus was no more real a person than Superman or Iron Man.
But using that theory, and the amount of research going into Jesus, can you justify any historical people from that age?
What historical persons have stories that are nearly completely ripped off from early myths, using similar names, the same events, the same number of followers, the same numerical oddities, etc.?
G=G+1 a negative answer is not a valid response, but I will answer it anyway.
Julius Caesar, and emperoros of Rome, Egyptian Pharaoghs, Menelaus and Agamemnon of Sparta, Alexander the Great, to name a few before Jesus, and
of those that followed him too many to mention. All the kings of Scotland, England, and the U.K., Ireland, France, popes from noble families, Mohammid, Rulers of Aethiopia, the Barca family,
The majority of the premedieval and post apostolic saints, Tsars of Russia, leaders of the Huns, and other invaders of Europe, Moctezuma, the Inca,, and the ancestors of most
African dynasties. George Washington, Note that is most or if not all of these cases the historic peerson, might not even be responsible but his followeers were, as in Chris´s sake.
Today, Trump is doing the same thing, creating both a myth about himself, an a negative myth abot his predecesors, to justify his existance.