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Was the Original Jesus a Pagan God?

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Update 2015-08-29: Jeff Rose "The Bible Hunters" (documentary)

There is an interesting popular science book named "The Jesus Mysteries: Was the Original Jesus a Pagan God?" by Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy. I have to say that both are not widely accepted as proper researchers by other researchers.

However, I find their theory quite compelling: the story of Jesus is a result of a designer process - on purpose or not. There are many similarities to far older historical myths and gods.

Let's take a look at one specific quote from the book.

Example Quote from the Book

Here is the original quote in contrast to the short version of Wikipedia with links added by me:

Either the Devil really has perfected the art of diabolical mimicry or there is a mystery to solve here. Let's review the evidence:

Discussion

Even though the receptions of critics were negative (some of them without actually even reading the book), the theory is stunning. One has to do some research to dig into pre-Jesus history for verifying or falsifying each point.

However, the New Testament was written after two generations or oral traditions were able to include various "decorations" - no offense. Variations in stories that are told (not written/read) are totally normal. This is also a reason for telling stories in rhymes that help to minimize this variation-effect to a certain extend.

Further more, Constantine the Great did enforce unified sources for his new religion. The term heresy was invented for people who did not follow the one and true "type" of Christianity and thousands and thousands have been killed, their books destroyed. Whole cultures were lost.

Alternative versions of the New Testament were hunted down and destroyed in his whole empire. People not worshiping "correctly" were excommunicated or killed. No wonder that the four testaments are rather similar versions of one Jesus.

Other sources such as the Dead Sea Scrolls or Gnostic sources are very interesting since they offer an "unfiltered" source of information to the same stories. And yes, they do show a slightly different picture here and there. The early Christianity was a rather diverse group of people with different books, different beliefs, and quite different interpretations.

The Christian religion placed its holidays on pre-existing holidays of different origins such as Christmas or Easter. The latter might be based on a valid belief.

So when the Christian religion might as well be based on much older religions and myths, lots of people with influence "filtered" and "unified" historical sources: What do I have to think of the current set of rules of the Christian church?

Just a play of thoughts.

2015-08-08: There is an interesting discussion in the Disqus-comments below. You might want to click on the button:

Jeff Rose: The Bible Hunters (BBC Documentary)

I saw (only) the second part of the BBC documentary named "The Bible Hunters" with Jeff Rose. You can find it on YouTube but at least for Austria, it's not available. This page also contains links to ed2k files.

Besides any valuable criticism, the documentary shows that there were many diverse versions of the same story in the early centuries of the Christian church. Alternative versions of the New Testament were hunted down and had to be hidden in order to survive the re-writing or unification of history.

Despite the fact that I am no researcher of this field and Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy are criticized for not being experts as well, history does seem to confirm the basic theme here: the New Testament is not the only truth. There are other and different versions which were intensively hunted down and destroyed over the centuries for various reasons. It is valid to question the content of the New Testament. We have reason to believe that the truth behind the Christianity is more complicated and diverse as we thought.

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