Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Was Jesus even Crucified? Part 6b

Part 6

WHEN was Jesus Crucified?

Previous Parts:

Part 1 - Link
Part 2 - Link
Part 3 - Link
Part 4 - Link
Part 5 - Link
Part 6a - Link

Part 6b - More of Eusebius' Confusion

In the Part 6a last, I established that Eusebius had placed the crucifixion of Jesus – even if inadvertently – in 30 CE, 19 CE and 34 to 36 CE. Now I will show that he even throws in still more dates for said crucifixion; which, as I have shown before, could have been a cruci-fiction!

The next point I will bring up is Pilate’s storage and display of the imperial emblems at the House of the Holy Place in Jerusalem at the beginning of his term, which temple was rebuilt and dedicated as a ROMAN TEMPLE. So I give the page over to Eusebius so he will show us how it relates the aforementioned execution of the historical Jesus.

In his Church History II:5:1
6. But I shall omit the most of them and record only those things which will make clearly evident to the reader that the misfortunes of the Jews came upon them not long after their daring deeds against Christ and on account of the same.
7. And in the first place he relates that at Rome in the reign of Tiberius, Sejanus, who at that time enjoyed great influence with the emperor, made every effort to destroy the Jewish nation utterly; and that in Judea, Pilate, under whom the crimes against the Saviour were committed, attempted something contrary to the Jewish law in respect to the temple, which was at that time still standing in Jerusalem, and excited them to the greatest tumults.

Continuing in Church History II.6:2

3. … With him [Philo3] agrees also Josephus, who likewise indicates that the misfortunes of the whole nation began with the time of Pilate, and with their daring crimes against the Saviour.
4. Hear what he says in the second book of his Jewish War, where he writes as follows: Pilate being sent to Judea as procurator4 by Tiberius, secretly carried veiled images of the emperor, called ensigns, to Jerusalem by night. The following day this caused the greatest disturbance among the Jews. For those who were near were confounded at the sight, beholding their laws, as it were, trampled under foot. For they allow no image to be set up in their city.
5. Comparing these things with the writings of the evangelists, you will see that it was not long before there came upon them the penalty for the exclamation which they had uttered under the same Pilate, when they cried out that they had no other king than Cæsar.5

Josephus in Antiquities 18.3.1 established the placements of the images of the emporer at the beginning of his prefecture, i.e., in 26 CE, or perhaps 19 CE going by the context in Antiquities 18.2.5 [54] which relates the death of Germanicus Caesar.6 Of course, this simply confirms the confusion that we have seen in Part 6a: the crucifixion occurred in 30 CE by Pontius Pilate (Church History I.10.1), 19 CE by Valerius Gratus (Church History I.10.2-4), and 34, 35 or 36 CE by the selfsame Pilate (Church History I.11.1-8.

A similar confusion is present in Eusebius’ Demonstratio Evangelica (The Proof of the Gospel), Book 8, chapter 2, sections 133 fin through 139 ( webpage) = pages 398 fin through 403 (Tr. W.J. Ferrar (1920)): (emphasis and formatting mine) 7

|133 fin = (398 [fin]) And the Evangelist St. Luke seems to imply this, where he says, "In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod, Philip and Lysanias being tetrarchs, Annas and Caiaphas being high-priests."8 For how could they both be high-priest at the same time unless the rules of the high-priesthood were disregarded? "In witness whereof Josephus writes: (399)
"Valerius Gratus the Roman General, after closing the high-priesthood of Ananus, appointed Ismael the son of Pheba, and removing him shortly afterwards appointed Eleazar son of Ananus the high-priest. A year later he removed him, and gave the office to |134 Simon son of Gathimus. He did not remain high priest more than a year, when Josephus, son of Caiaphas, took his place." 9 

I was obliged to give this quotation because of the words "The Unction shall be cast out, and there is no judgment in it,''10 which seem to me proved by it beyond any doubt.

After this the prophecy says, "And the city, and the holy place, he will destroy, with the governor that cometh."11 Here again I understand the rulers of foreign stock who succeeded him to be meant. For as above he named the High-Priests, Christs and Governors, saying, "Until Christ the Governor," in the same way after their time and after their abolition there was no other ruler to come but the (c) same Herod of foreign stock,12 and the others ruled the nation in order after them, in whose company and by whose aid, using them as his agents, that hateful bane of good men is said to have destroyed the city and the Holy Place. And indeed he destroyed of a truth the whole nation, now upsetting the established order of the priesthood, now perverting the whole people, and encouraging the city (which (d) stands metaphorically for its people) in impiety. And Aquila agrees with my interpretation of the passage, translating thus, "And the people of the governor that cometh will destroy the city and the holy place."13 Meaning that the city and the Holy Place arc not only to be ruined by the leader to come, whom I have identified in my interpretation, but also by his people. And you would not be far wrong in saying, too, that the Roman general and his army arc [sic] meant by the words before us, where I think the camps of the Roman rulers are meant, who governed the nation from that time, and who destroyed the city of Jerusalem itself, and its ancient venerable Temple. For they were cut off by them as by a flood, and were at once involved in destruction until the war was concluded, so that the prophecy was fulfilled and they suffered utter desolation (400) after their plot against our Saviour, which was followed by their extreme sufferings during the siege.14 You will find an accurate account of it in the history of Josephus.

But after the prophecy of the events that happened to the Jewish nation in the intermediate period between the |135 seven and sixty-two weeks, there follows the prophecy of the new Covenant announced by our Saviour. So when all the intermediate matter between the seven and the sixty-two weeks is finished, there is added, "And he will confirm (b) a Covenant with many one week,"15 and in half the week the sacrifice and the libation shall be taken away, and on the Holy Place shall come the abomination of desolation, and until the fullness of time fullness shall be given to the desolation. Let us consider how this was fulfilled.

Now the whole period of our Saviour's Teaching and working of Miracles is said to have been three-and-a-half years, which is half a week. John the Evangelist, in his Gospel, makes this clear to the attentive.16 One week of years therefore would be represented by the whole period of His association with the Apostles, both the time before His Passion, and the time after His Resurrection. For it is written that before His Passion He shewed Himself for the space of three-and-a-half years to His disciples and also to those who were not His disciples: while by teaching and miracles He revealed the powers of His Godhead to all equally whether Greeks or Jews. But after His Resurrection He was most likely with His disciples a period equal |136 to the years, being seen of them forty days, and eating with them, and speaking of the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God, as the Acts of the Apostles tells us. So that this would be the prophet's week of years, during which He "confirmed a covenant with many," confirming that is to say the new Covenant of the Gospel Preaching. And who were the many to whom He confirmed it, but His own disciples and Apostles, and such of the Hebrews who believed in Him? And moreover, half through this week, during which He confirmed the said Covenant with many, the (401) sacrifice and libation was taken away, and the abomination of desolation began, for in the middle of this week after the three-and-a-half days of His Teaching, at the time when He suffered, the Veil of the Temple was torn asunder from the top to the bottom, so that in effect from that time sacrifice and libation were taken away, and the abomination of desolation stood in the holy place, inasmuch as the Being had left them desolate,17 Who had been from time immemorial till (b) that day the guardian and protector of the place. For it is fitting to believe that up to the Saviour's Passion there was some Divine Power guarding the Temple and the Holy of Holies. For He could not have attended with the multitude at the Temple to keep the Feasts according to the laws, if He had not known that it still remained a place worthy of God. Therefore there were in the Temple also some that prophesied up to that time, as Anna the (c) Prophetess, daughter of Phanuel, and Simeon, who took Him into his arms when He was an infant, whose prophecies are handed down in Scripture. Nor could our Lord have said to the leper, "Go, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift which Moses commanded for a testimony unto thee," if He had not considered it right for the legal observances to be carried out there as in a holy place worthy of God. Nor would He have thrust out those who bought and sold, saying, "Take these things hence, and make not |137 my Father's House a house of merchandise," if He had not thought that the Temple was still to be reckoned sacred. But it was when the hour of their extreme wickedness drew near, that He explained all when He said, "Behold your house is left unto you desolate," which also was fulfilled, when at his Passion the Veil of the Temple was wholly rent in twain, and from that moment the sacrifice and libation well pleasing to God according to the ordinance of the Law was in effect taken away, and when it was removed, the abomination of desolation, as the prophecy before us says, appeared in its place. And if it be said that the worship of the Sanctuary appeared to continue for a time, yet it was not pleasing to God, being offered without judgment and not according to the Law. For as before of (402) old when the Unction was abolished, and the lawful line of High Priests ceased after the death of Hyrcanus, they who held the office afterwards seemed to perform disordered and illegal rites, since they were breaking the fitting Laws, of whom the prophecy said, "The Unction shall be cast out, and there is no judgment in it," referring to its illegality and lack of judgment; so here you will rightly say it has happened to the offering and libation, which were rightly and (b) lawfully offered before our Saviour's Passion, while the Power still guarded the Holy Places, but which were taken away directly after the perfect and supreme Sacrifice which He offered, when He offered Himself for our sins, being the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world, which sacrifice having been delivered to all men in the new Sacraments of the new Covenant, the Sacrifices of the old are taken away. For concurrently with the fulfilment of the oracle which says, "And he shall confirm a covenant (c) with many one week," all that is connected with the old Covenant is abolished. And when was the new Covenant confirmed, but when our Lord and Saviour, about to consummate the great Mystery of His delivery to death, on the night in which He was betrayed, delivered to His disciples the symbols of the unspeakable words of the new Covenant referring to Him? For concurrently with this celebration, (d) the old Covenant of Moses was abolished, which was shewn by the veil of the Temple being rent at the very time. Sacrifice and libation being from that time abolished and ceasing in effect and truth, any sacrifices that were |138  afterwards thought to be offered there were celebrated in a profane place by profane and unhallowed men. Hear the witness of Josephus about this:

"On the day of Pentecost, the priests going by night into the Temple, as was their custom, for the services, said that they were first conscious of a quaking and a sound, and afterwards of a sudden voice which said, Let us depart hence."18

And he records this to have taken place after the Passion of our Saviour.19 And the same writer says elsewhere: (403)

"Pilate the Governor "(meaning the Pilate of our Saviour's time) "brought the images of Caesar into the Temple by night, which was unlawful, and caused a great outburst of tumult and disorder among the Jews."20 Which Philo confirms, saying:
"Pilate laid up in the Temple by night the imperial emblems, and from that time the Jews were involved in rebellion and mutual troubles." 21
And from that time a succession of all kinds of troubles afflicted the whole nation and their city until the last war against them, and the final siege, in which destruction (b) rushed on them like a flood with all kinds of misery of famine, plague and sword, and all who had conspired against the Saviour in their youth were cut off; then, too, the abomination of desolation stood in the Temple, and it has remained there even till to-day, while they have daily reached deeper depths of desolation. And perhaps this will be so until the end of the world, according to the limit set by the prophet when he said, "And unto the consummation of time a fulfilment shall be given to the desolation." (c) These words our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ sealed, when He said, "When ye shall see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the Prophet, standing in the Holy Place, then ye shall know that her desolation draws near."
And if the Jews are hard to persuade of this, they must be convicted not only of a shameless opposition to truth |139  and clear evidence, but also of misrepresenting, so far as they can, the predictions as falsehoods, if it is to be thought that in the seventy weeks of years some of them include all the time, while they prophesy of what is to happen in the intermediate period, while others, though we are now nearly a thousand years from the date of the prophecy, admit no (d) sign of the fulfilment of what was written, although their Unction has been abolished, as the divine prediction foretold, and their sanctuary, and the former inhabitants destroyed and utterly brought to naught in the flood of the completed war, and strangest thing of all even now to be seen, I mean, the abomination of desolation still standing in the one holy place, concerning which our Lord and Saviour said what I have quoted.  

This is a very long-winded and rambling passage!

Now I shall attempt to address each point to decipher the implied date for the Crucifixion of the historical Jesus.

First, he quotes Luke 3, which establishes the beginning of John the Baptist’s career in the fifteenth year of Tiberias Caesar, which would be 28 or 29 CE or 28-29 CE, depending on what dates are used. Since Luke was writing for an educated Greek and Roman audience, the counting syatem likely used would have been de facto years starting from August 14 or September 18, 14 CE; non-accession years by the Julian calendar which would count the partial year of 14 CE as a full year, i.e., the first year; or accession years which would make 15 CE the first year.22 This would make the year of the Crucifixion about 29 or 30 CE, given Luke’s presentation of Jesus’ career within the span of about one year.

Next, he mentions Luke’s assertion of Annas (Ananius) and Caiaphas being high-priests at once, which he questions, and resolves the conundrum by quoting Josephus’ recounting of the Romans’ annual replacement of the high priest, in contravention of Jewish Law, four times under Valerius Gratus during 14 to 18 CE, with Caiaphas becoming high priest starting in CE. 23

Then Eusebius relates the end of the succession of high priests that was legally valid according to Jewish Law when Herod took the throne in Jerusalem in 37 CE. His recounting of Valerius Gratus’ removal and appointment of four high priests within the space of four years compelled him to cite Aquila version of Daniel 9:26, which interpreted the Messiah being cut off as the Unction (religious or ceremonial anointing in accordance with Jewish Law) being “cast out,” 24 followed by the “destruction” of Jerusalem under the train of kings, prefects, procurators beginning in 37 BCE and ending with the Judean rebels being defeated and the city and temple physically destroyed by the Roman military commanders in 70 CE.

After this Eusebius asserts without any justification from the gospel of John or the Synoptics, that Jesus’ career lasted 3½ years. Now I have shown in Part 6a that in Church History Eusebius arrived at this bit of information by harmonizing Luke’s chronology concerning the high priests Annas (Ananias) and Caiaphas with that of Josephus, which are also recounted above. There are only three Passovers noted in gJohn, and just one in each of the synoptics, so the most amount of time Jesus’ ministry would have covered by a realistic reckoning of the data is a little over two years.

Stranger still is that Eusebius places the “Abomination of Desolation” at the Crucifixion -- not that the Crucifixion itself was the Abomination; but the curtain was ripped in twain as a result, and the Being that dwelt therein flew the coop – thus revoking the sacrifice and the libation and turning the continuation of the sacrifieces and so forth an abomination: because from henceforth, the priests were offering them in a profane place; and what is more, they did not recognize Jesus’ self-sacrifice as a final one-time sacrifice for all sins. On the other hand, I think it would make more sense if Golgotha, the locus of the Crucifixion, was the Temple Mount, where Mark appears to place it, right in front of the Temple, rather than in that place now occupied by the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, thus making the Crucifixion itself the Abomination. He concludes this digression by quoting Josephus’ Jewish War anecdote of the Day of Pentecost, 65 CE, when voices were heard from within the Temple, “Let us depart hence.18, 19 But it can hardly be possible that the Crucifixion was in 65 CE! 19 Yet that is exactly where Eusebius places it, apparently.

And then Eusebius quotes Josephus’ recounting of the event where Pontius Pilate, the freshly minted prefect (and procurator) of Judaea, brings the images and ensigns of Caesar into the Second Temple, which was a Roman temple, causing an uproar among the Judean people as a result. He even has Philo say the same thing.21 And perhaps Philo did, in a work that is now (conveniently) lost. Still, Eusebius states that this incident happened after the Crucifixion, thus placing it at the very beginning of Pilate’s rule: 26 CE, or 18 / 19 CE if the Josephan references to the lengths of Valerus Gratus and Pontius Pilate’s hegemonies over Judea are interpolated instead of authentic.

On the other hand, Eusebius puts the special darkness of the Synoptic Gospels about 32 or 33 CE. On this point, Raymond E. Brown notes that: 25

“Eusebius in his Chrinocle for the 18th-19th year of the reign of Tiberius (GCS [2d ed.] 47.147-75)26, the section for the “18th – 19th year of the government of Tiberius Caesar, reports that Phlegon says that in the 4th year of the 202d Olympiad there was a great eclipse of the Sun, outdoing all that preceded it. It became like a night at midday. The specified year would have run from July 1, AD 32 to June 30, AD 33.27
It is not found in the Armenian, but it has been translated into Latin and repeated in Jerome’s Chronicle which contains the following on this point (emphasis and formatting mine): 28
d Jesus Christ, according to the prophecies, which had been spoken about him beforehand, came to the Passion in the 18th year of Tiberius, at which time also we find these things written verbatim in other commentaries of the gentiles: an eclipse of the sun happened (1), Bithynia shaken by earthquake, and in the city of Nicaea many buildings collapsed: all of which agree with what occurred in the Passion of the Saviour. Indeed Phlegon, who is an excellent calculator of Olympiads, also writes about this, in his 13th book writing thus:
"However in the fourth year of the 202nd olympiad, an eclipse of the sun happened, greater and more excellent than any that had happened before it; at the sixth hour, day turned into dark night, so that the stars were seen in the sky, and an earthquake in Bithynia toppled many buildings of the city of Nicaea."

These things the aforementioned man (says).
The proof however of this matter, that in this year the Saviour suffered, the gospel of John presents, in which it is written that after the 15th year of Tiberius Caesar, the Lord preached for three years. Also Josephus, a native writer of the Jews, attests that around that time on the day of Pentecost, the priests first perceived an earth tremor and certain (loud) sounds. Then, that an unexpected voice suddenly burst out from the innermost part of the Temple saying: "Let us flee from this abode." However the aforementioned man writes that in the same year Pilate the governor secretly in the night set up images of Caesar in the temple, and from this arose the first cause of the rebellion and turmoil of the Jews.
(1) November 24, 29 AD.

Here Eusebius comes close to the modern traditional reckoning of the crucifixion in 33 CE, as opposed to 30 CE, accepted by most scholars. But even here he makes a few errors. Here Eusebius states Jesus’ suffering was in the 18th year of Tiberius Caesar’s Government, which would be 32 CE by de facto (Aug/Sept 31 to Aug/Sept 32) or accessional year (32). The accessional year is worse – it yields 31 CE.

But his paragraph runs into the 19th year of Tiberius Caesar, which fits a three-year ministry ending in 33 CE nicely; it is in total agreement with Phlegon’s alleged dating of the eclipse. We are lucky in that eusebius explicitly stated that Jesus started his ministry in the 16th year of Tiberius, because people back then might have counted these years not as excluding said 15th year, but including it, which means we would have been back to 32 CE again!30 Worse, Eusebius brings in an event which occurred in 65 CE (“Let us remove hence”) 29 and an event which occurred most likely in 26 CE per Antiquities 18.2.2 (or perhaps 19 CE per Antiquities 18.2.5 & 18.3.1.). 31


It appears that Eusebius does not know when Jesus was crucified. Quoting different sources, he seems to comes up with several different dates: 19 CE (when Caiaphas became high priest), about 30 CE (=the 16th year of Tiberius Caesar), 34 to 36 CE (after the death of John the Baptist), 26 (or 19) CE (the attempt by Pilate to erect standards with Tiberius Caesar’s effigies on them), 65 CE (the year of the Passover of the great throngs, when voices came from the Temple, saying, “Let us depart hence”) which is impossible, 32 CE (eighteenth year of Tiberius Caesar), 32/33 CE (three years after the 15th year of Tiberius Caesar, counted inclusively or exclusively), and 33 CE (4th year of the 202nd Olympiad). Rather, it is apparent that he is trying to shoehorn saecular history in order to fit the Gospel narrative, or rather, the harmonized Gospel “narrative,” as Dr. Brown himself observed. 32 So we finally come round to the baseline for Eusebius’ reasoning --  that Luke is correct in establishing John the Baptist’s ministry in the 15th year of Tiberius Caesar and assumed about one full year before Jesus showed up to be baptized. To him, everything else is secondary and the date of Jesus’ execution would have been in 33 CE. But to get there he creates an awful lot of confusion!

Which will lead us to Part 6c: what is the Gospel dating, or rather, what are the Gospels’ dates for the Crucifixion?
1.      Eusebius, Church History II.5.6,7. Link: . For the Greek Text, see Historia Ecclesiastica at the Documenta Catholica Omnia website, Eusebius Caesariensis, Historia Ecclesiastica entry page here:
2.      Ibid; see also Josephus, Antiquities 18.3.1.
3.      Philo Judaeus, Legate ad Caium 360 (ch. 38): “… and his endless savage ferocity.”
4.      Note Eusebius follows Josephus’ nomenclature of πίτροπος (epitropos = procurator) in his Jewish War instead of ἡγεμών (hegemon = prefect) that he used in Antiquities.  See also Richard Carrier, at Richard Carrier BlogsHerod the Procurator” where he explains that Tacitus actually wrote that one line about Christus, and used the word procurator to belittle Pilate and drag him down from the rank of praefectus, which Pilate actually held, to the status of a lowly procurator, which office was frequently filled by freedmen. (Posted by R. Carrier Jan. 6, 2012 and accessed Feb. 20, 2014)
5.      gJohn 19:15. The original Greek reads, οὐκ ἔχομεν βασιλέα εἰ μὴ Καίσαρα. (ouk basilea ei mê Kaisara) “We have no king, if not Caesar.”
6.      Josephus, Antiquities 18.3.1 [55]: “But now Pilate, the procurator of Judea, removed the army from Cesarea to Jerusalem, to take their winter quarters there, in order to abolish the Jewish laws.” Establishing the time in the context is “But now,” immediately following on the death of Germanicus Caesar in Antiquities 18.2.5 [54]. Note that in the Koine Greek, δέ (de) is a conjunctive participle with adversative force, generally meaning “while, whereas, on the other hand, then, yet, now.” The time established by this context then is 19 CE for the first instance in Antiquities of the controversy that Pilate stirred up (also recorded previously in Jewish War 2.x.x [169] – [174]).
7.    Eusebius, Demonstratio Evangelica (The Proof of the Gospel), Book 8, link:
8.      gLuke 3:2; see n. 5 in Part 6a.
9.      Josephus, Antiquities 18.2.2 [34].
10.  Daniel 9:26, Aquila version, as quoted and/or interpreted by Eusebius in Dem. Evan. Book 8, chapter 2, section 396. It appears that Eusebius’ quotes within the body of text of this chapter vary widely from the actual Aquila text, which is given in full at the heading of chapter 2. See n. 7 for link.
11.  Ibid.
12.  Herod the Great (r. de jure 40-4 BCE, de facto 37-4 BCE) as understood by Eusebius in section 396, and the whole train of Roman-appointed leaders after him until the Roman general Titus and his legions destroy the temple and the town utterly in 70 CE.
13.  Same as n. 10 above.
14.  By traditional understanding, 37 years (33-70 CE) elapsed between the alleged Jewish plots against Jesus and the final siege of Jerusalem by the Roman general Titus. By most New Testament scholars’ understanding, 40.
15.  Daniel 9:27, Aquila version. Save caveats noted in n. 10 above also apply.
16.  Actually gJohn has mention of just three Passovers, which means the time period of Jesus’ ministry intended by John may be as short as slightly more than two years.
17.  This is a novel interpretation of the prophecy of Daniel 9:27, 11:31, 12:11; referred to by Mark 13:14.
18.  Josephus, Jewish War 6.5.3 [299].
19.  See n. 18 above. According to Josephus, this occurred on Pentecost in the year of the “Passover of the Great Throngs,” or 65 CE. By most modern New Testament scholars’ reckoning of the year of the Crucifixion (i.e., 30 CE), this was just shy of four decades after.
20.  Josephus, Jewish War 2.9.2 [169], Antiquities 18.3.1 [55].
21.  Philo Judaeus, Legate ad Caium 360 (ch. 38) is the location of Philo’s discussion about Pilate. The above quote appears to be made up, derivative of what Josephus wrote. Following is a paraphrase of what Philo wrote:
Philo tells us (Legatio ad Caium, xxxviii) that on other occasion he dedicated some gilt shields in the palace of Herod in honor of the emperor. On these shields there was no representation of any forbidden thing, but simply an inscription of the name of the donor and of him in whose honor they were set up. The Jews petitioned him to have them removed; when he refused, they appealed to Tiberius, who sent an order that they should be removed to Caesarea. International Standard Bible Encyclopedia Online: “Pilate; Pontius“ (accessed 4-17-2014).
22.  John P. Meier, A Marginal Jew, Rethinking the Historical Jesus, New York, The Anchor Bible Reference Library, Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing, 1991, Vol. I, p. 385. Dr. Meier notes herein that Luke was “certainly aiming his ambitious literary creation at a cultured Greco-Roman audience, embodied in the ‘excellent Theophilus’ of Luke 1:3 and Acts 1:1….” He notes further that Luke most likely would have used the Julian calendar and accounted the regnal years of Tiberius as (a) the de facto regnal years August 19th as the anniversary date, (b) counted the portion of the year 14 CE after August 19th inclusive as a whole year, a.k.a. the “(‘non-accession-year system’),” or (c) counted the years beginning with January 1, 15 CE, a.k.a. the “(‘accession-year system’).”  
23.  Josephus, Antiquities 20.9.1 [197], 20.9.2 [205]. Josephus herein refers to the elder Ananias as the high-priest; or rather for our understanding, high-priest emeritus, for Jewish Law, before the Romans nullified the relevant ordinances by their removals and reappointments of said priests, had stipulated that the high priest had a life-time tenure. In which case a 29 or 30 CE crucifixion date would be perfectly fine with the chronology of Luke (save the birth of Jesus linked with the first year of the rule of Quirinus as Legate of Syria in 6 CE).
24.  To be fair, the Septuagint does the same thing: ἐξολεθρευθήσεται χρῖσμα καὶ κρίμα οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν αὐτῷ (exolethreuthêsetai chrisma kai ouk estin en autô) = “the anointing will be utterly destroyed and the decree is not by itself.” (Tufts Perseus Greek Word Study Tool 4-13-2014)
25.  Raymond E Brown, The Death of the Messiah. New York, Anchor Bible Reference Library, Doubleday, a division of Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, Inc., 1994, p. 1042.
26.  Ibid., n. 26: “Tiberius reigned from 14 to 37; was Eusebius thinking of AD 31-32? Holzmeister (“Finsternis”) raises the issue of a possible confusion between a moon eclipse on April 3, AD 33, and the sun eclipse of Nov. 24, AD 29.”
27.  Ibid., n. 27: “Some like Maier (“Sejanus”) use this evidence to argue for the death of Jesus in April 33, but such reasoning does not remove the impossibility of a solar eclipse at Passover.”
28.  Roger Pearse, “Jerome’s Chronicle, Being Eusebius’ Chronicle, Part II (Chronological Tables / Canons),” (2005) pp. 188-332,, accessed 20 May 2014 p. 256/25[7],. This passage in para. b notes that Jesus started his ministry in the 16th year of Tiberius, the 1st year of the 202nd Olympiad.
29.  Same as notes 18 and 19 above.
30.  See n. 28 above.
31.  For 26 CE, from Josephus’ Antiquities 18.2.2: “He {Tiberius] was now the third emperor; and he sent Valerius Gratus to be procurator of Judea, and to succeed Annius Rufus…. When Gratus had done those things, he went back to Rome, after he had tarried in Judea eleven years, when Pontius Pilate came as his successor.” For 19 CE, see note 6 above.
32.  Brown, p. 1042, “Eusebius goes on to connect this with an earthquake in Bithynia that caused buildings to fall in Nicaea and with signs in the Jerusalem Temple reported by Josephus; clearly he is constructing a scenario to match the gospels.”