The Jesus Myth

Jesus Myth - The Case Against Historical Christ

  • The Gospel of Mark was the first story of Jesus that was written, and all others are dependent on it 
  • The Gospel of Mark shows clear signs of being written as an allegorical fiction 
  • Virtually every detail of the life of Jesus comes from "Old Testament" scriptures 
  • Some of the details of the life of Jesus are based on mistranslations of the Hebrew scriptures 
  • Jesus' crucifixion on Passover defies historical believability, yet makes perfect sense metaphorically 
  • The Gospels make many claims that are contradicted by the historical record 
  • The earliest writings about Jesus, from Paul and others, contain no details of his life 
  • Many statements in the letters of Paul only make sense if Paul does not view Jesus Christ as a historical person 
  • There is not one single writing from or about Jesus during his supposed lifetime 
  • Philo, a prolific Jewish writer who lived from 20 BCE to 50 CE, wrote extensively about the political and theological movements throughout the Mediterranean, and his views foreshadowed Christian theology, yet he never once wrote anything about Jesus. Not only this, but he actually wrote about political conflicts between the Jews and Pontius Pilate in Judea 
  • All of the non-Christian references to Jesus can be shown to have either been introduced later by Christian scribes or were originally based on Christian claims 
  • There is no evidence of any knowledge of a tomb of Jesus (empty or occupied) prior to the Gospel stories 
  • There were many conflicting beliefs about who Jesus Christ was in the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd centuries, including beliefs that he had never existed on earth "in the flesh" 
  • The Catholics made purely theological arguments as to why Jesus Christ had to have existed "in the flesh" 
- The claim appears to be that the Romans created the "pacifist" Jesus to quell Jewish resistance and fighting, and "designed" him to fulfill Jewish prophecies and using existing models of saviors, presumably to make the spread of belief easier using things people have already heard of or believe. "Plagiarized" is a bit of a loaded word in this context, and of course would have been largely meaningless at that time when copying and modifying stories was quite normal, and even great works of thought were attributed to leaders rather than the individuals.

- The idea that "books" of Jesus were designed to make him fit the prophecies or spread more easily is not new. Heck, there are two different stories in the New Testament on linking Jesus to Nazareth (to fulfill a prophecy the savior would come from there) and two different stories on how he is a descendent of King David (both which seem to fail by going through Joseph who is not a blood relative of Jesus since Mary was a virgin upon his conception).

- There is plenty of biblical scholar work showing books of the New Testament (or others not included) being written and modified to meet agendas and prophecies. (E.g., read some of Bart Ehrman's books.) However, that is still consistent with Jesus being a real person and the foundation of stories about him being based on some reality, even if distorted and modified to make him seem divine rather than just a person.

- The difference here seems to be more direct evidence of the goal of creating the actual figure of Jesus and the foundation of the stories to achieve an agenda, that of the Romans pacifying the Jews.

- Here's how I understand it after a few years of studying world religions (admittedly none of this may be true and my memory may not be what it once was, so feel free to discuss):
  • Christians were persecuted mainly in the early Western Roman Empire (if at all – this claim can be argued a lot, but generally speaking the claims reference persecution in the West), while Constantine was emperor of the later Eastern Roman (Byzantine) empire. The geographical distance today would be Rome as the capital vs. Istanbul. That should say quite a bit about how different the two empires were. 
  •  By the time Constantine was making Christianity the Roman religion, the persecution of the Christian sects had dwindled to nearly nothing; Christianity was accepted and gaining ground. Constantine didn't exactly 'make' the Christians; he chose to align with a side that was clearly already winning. This was a political move. See the Councils of Nicea for more info there. 
  • The Koran/Quran is similar to the Bible because it was written after it and believes in many of the same root stories. Islam is the religion of Ishmael, son of Abraham. Judaism is the religion of Isaac, Ishmael's younger brother. Ergo, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam can all be traced back to Abraham. Their stories are all essentially identical before Abraham, and retain many similarities after. It can also be argued that Islam is being used politically so much these days because they're simply copying what's worked before in the past when Christianity split out of Judaism.
  • Modern day Judaism holds that Jesus was not 'the prophet' spoke of in the Old Testament. Technically speaking, Christians are simply 'Jews who believe the prophecy was filled through Jesus'. The religions are one in the same, excepting that key point. 

- This is why the Torah is included in the Christian Bible. The Torah is also recognized as valid by the Quran, even though the Torah is not actually in the Koran as it is the Bible.

- Modern day Judaism is the ancestry of the remaining Jewish people who did not believe Jesus was the messiah their prophecies spoke of, and also holds that messiah hasn't yet come in any other form. Ergo, they have stuck to their original beliefs. Christianity holds that Jesus brought the 'new covenant'. 'Christians' didn't start really disassociating with Judaism until around 150-300 AD. Up until around that point, they still considered themselves apart of the Jewish community, albeit a bit of a heretical one.

- To me, the biggest evidence against Jesus is the fact that he never wrote anything. Here is a man who said "I am the way, the truth, and the light." and who claimed to be the most significant human ever, yet he never wrote anything at all?

- It is amazing how willing people are to believe in the ridiculous if you simply promise them something in the afterlife.

Jesus in a nutshell


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