The “Real” Jesus

jesuspicture

I left the following comment on Steve’s blog in response to one of his recent posts. As I was reading it back to myself, I thought it might be fun to open up the floor and let others use their imagination to describe their version of Jesus. So have at it folks! Put your ingenuity to work! Who was this guy … REALLY?

Here’s what I came up with …

-IF- Jesus existed at all, I would agree he was simply the child of natural parents. As he grew up, he was somewhat drawn to the Hebrew perspectives on Yahweh. Further, he was an individual who enjoyed attention, so he held a lot of bull-shitting sessions in which “the guys” mulled over the various beliefs and laws and such. After awhile, he became rather well-known in the community and, taking advantage of his newly-established reputation, he widened his circle of listeners. At some point, however, he became a bee in the bonnet of the Romans and, well, we all know the end of the story.

All I ask is that you please keep it clean. 🙂 (And definitively NO references to modern-day politics! We have enough of that already.)

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Image by Jose Conejo Saenz from Pixabay

147 thoughts on “The “Real” Jesus

  1. I have long favored historicism (over mythicism). That there was a real Jesus seemed to better explain what we see.

    However, now that I have seen Qanonsense, and the ability of the T**** cult to form beliefs with no evidential basis, I am re-examining. Perhaps mythicism makes more sense than I had realized.

    Liked by 8 people

  2. IF, is the correct word here, but….just a normal man with some sort of small following, who was probably killed by the Roman’s for being a trouble maker. Then 200 years later had his life embellished to a ridiculous level by several writers, who got included into the bible also, as they made the “cut” because many of the books didn’t. Thus a complete fantasy was born into a breakaway religious dogma where the cult part really blossomed into what we see as Christianity today, which is minus the early good things attributed to him..like feed the poor, be kind, take care of the immigrants, love one another and desire peace.

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  3. I have several possibilities. First, possibly someone who thought that he was the actual messiah. He thought his entry into Jerusalem and actions there would fulfill the prophecies, and that god would then work the prophesied miracles and drive out the Romans. I found this idea discussed at length here: https://msuweb.montclair.edu/~furrg/gned/maccoby.pdf

    Or, one of the many “end of the world” preachers that we have been plagued with throughout history. Jerusalem’s version of Harold Camping.

    Or, someone like a 1960’s cult leader who gained a following telling his followers that they didn’t need to follow the harsh rules of “the man” but just needed peace and love. Roman-era hippies.

    My best guess is that there were several different preachers and philosophers around that time, including whoever Jesus was and probably also Apollonius of Tyana, all of whom influenced the formation of a new mystery cult based on old Jewish writings, with strong Greek and Egyptian influences added in. This cult created a literary Jesus character that was an amalgamation of those thinkers, with a large quantity of fanciful details about miracles and prophecies thrown in, so that “Bible Jesus” bears almost no resemblance to any person that actually lived.

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    • This is a pretty solid assessment I think, by Ubi. Jesus was a devout Jew that became an apocalyptic preacher that believed the overthrow of the Roman tyrants and the establishment of the heavenly realm on Earth was imminent, i.e., in his lifetime (As Paul also believed). I think one of the most striking moments in NT scripture is when he is arrested in Gethsemane in Mark, where he goes from thinking that two swords is plenty “enough”, to getting arrested and hardly speaking at all. Clearly – at least as I read it – he expected the army of angels to come to his aid and, when this did not happen, he was in shock, now realizing he was NOT the messiah and he was in his last days. He had to know from his life in Israel that he was bound for a most grievous execution; scourging & crucifixion. There were, we know, a number of apocalyptic self-described “messiahs” during this time (Simon Bar Kochba, meaning “Son of the Star” led a rebellion, albeit unsuccessful, in 132 of the first century. He was actually called Messiah by Akiva, the leading Jewish scholar of his day and still a giant among Jewish people. Of course he ended up dead as well, on a Roman battlefield. He was followed by a number of others but clearly Jesus is the best known of them.

      As far as all the mythological aspect go; the virgin birth, walking on water, water-into-wine, etc. is all just that, mythology. In fact, I doubt these stories even existed during his lifetime.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Nan, you know pretty well how I’ve always approached this question.

    I critique it/Yeshua from a historical forensics viewpoint, examining extensively ALL the pertinent, contextual contemporaneous sources… from the canonical Synoptic Greco-Roman Gospels to the Earliest Apostolic and Patristic Roman Church Fathers’ extant writings to non-canonical, non-Roman traditions, and then the most critical sources… the Late Second Temple Jewish sources of the Zugot and Tannaim Periods in particular, and finally the Dead Sea Scrolls. To date, these are all of the key relevant sources to accurately define The “Real” Jesus—minus all the much later superstitions and Greek Apotheosis implanted into the convoluted Latin Greco-Roman version we all a familiar with today. Two of my blog-posts cover much of this summation with several others expanding and elaborating on the same question. Those two primary blog-posts are…

    https://professortaboo.com/2018/03/10/the-incarnation-of-g-man/

    …and…

    https://professortaboo.com/2019/09/07/christ-the-roman-ruse/

    None of the contents of these two primary posts deal with anything remotely connected to the mumbo-jumbo of modern Christian Apologetics or politics. Just PURE historical sources, records, and exhaustive Secular and religious evidence. 🙂

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  5. Great topic Nan. I think Jesus was from boyhood a man on a mission- at 12 he was already ‘about his Father’s business.’ His mother probably told him at least some details surrounding his birth and infancy. So that he gradually grew conscious that the prophets had written about HIM. Just your ordinary average Jew who lived commonly among commoners- who better to turn religion on its ear.

    It seems he took matters casually, as they unfolded before him. And as from God- he didn’t seem to separate spiritual stuff from the commonplace. For example, he often saw God in the natural world- flowers and birds, thunder and lightning. Yet I think Jesus came most of all to make us fit for an everyday relationship with God. That’s how I see Jesus- with me in the daily mix.

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  6. Jesus was a teenage boy who got lost in the desert, and rescued by Tibetan Buddhist monks travelling to the Dead Sea. They took him back to Tibet where he studied with TiBu masters who taught him about reincarnation (Hebrew had no word for it, just “reborn,” or “born again.”) He also learned about nirvana (heaven) and samsara (hell, slightly distorted). He learned, amongst other things, to walk without his feet touching the ground (walking on water). He probably met the Dalai Lama (Father) too.
    Many years later he yearned for his homeland and returned there. He had all this new ideas, but there were no words for them in Hebrew. So he used available words, but the ideas were grossly misunderstood. He tried to teach his friends (the disciples) but could not make them understand fully (they were left with half-understood teachings).
    This is really simplistic, I wish I had been given this task when I still remembered my TiBu lessons. It all made sense, once upon a time…
    But there are so many similarities, just that there were no meaningful translations. He wanted to teach Buddhism, but his followers turned it into Christianity. Having none of the background TiBu monks learned from childhood, his followers filled in the spaces with ideas they were used to — God, heaven, etc. Then along came Paul of Tarsus, and the rest is history.
    IF there ever was a man named Jesus, (“Christ” is very similar to an ancient Sanskrit word meaning teacher) he was learned in Tibetan Buddhism, and wanted to spread it in Israel.

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    • This is certainly one of six possible MIA places Jesus/Yeshua was at during his SEVENTEEN missing years—in the canonical gospels—all 17 critical years! They are:

      Jesus stayed in Nazareth.
      • Jesus traveled to Japan.
      • Jesus traveled to Britain.
      • Jesus went to Qumrān, and studied with the Essene sect.
      • Jesus became a disciple of John the Baptist.

      And then this one…

      Jesus traveled to the Himalayas, and trained with mystic gurus there. To date, this is another explanation that unravels with little plausible or reliable evidence to support it.

      All of these theories have one thing in common: conjecture. Yes, even the most popular explanation that Christian apologists offer — he stayed in Nazareth as a normal ho-hum boy doing carpentry — is ultimately creative imaginations with insufficient or the thinnest of any support. For the reasonable, logical Christian this mystery should give serious pause, to put it mildly. Nevertheless Rawgod, your theory/feedback is popular. 🙂

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    • It really doesn’t take a Tibetan teacher to conclude the Buddhic principles Jesus taught. If one is alone to contemplate the nature of things Buddhism is a natural conclusion. I agree teaching this to monotheistic Hebrews would be a challenge, especially with the penalties of blasphemy floating over your head.

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      • I think I must have said something wrong to elicit such a comment out of you, Jim. But no matter. i think ikt all boils down to the same thing.
        If Jesus was real, and not a character in fiction as I accused him of being, he did not wander around in a desert for x number of years. He spent time in a Buddhist monastery somewhere, and ! think he botched it when he tried to bring it back to Israel.

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        • You said nothing wrong. I just think no one needs a Tibetan teacher to realize Buddhism. They just need to be away from public influence for a while. The Buddhist like to take credit for something that will come naturally if you let it.

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    • Certainly referring to his “heavenly father” would fit into talking about the lama. I remember reading about this from a Soviet magazine decades ago (well obviously), that claimed some evidence pointing to Levantine initiates in one of the Himalayan monasteries having been found, but when a further study was attempted a group of westeners had ransacked the archive and nothing could be saved. Naturally, if even a hint of possible evidence of Jesus being a Buddhist was possible, there would be a bunch of mighty organizations, that would have it in their interrest to destroy said possible evidence before it could be validated, or even dismissed. I could never find a second reliable source for it, so I left it in the “interresting thoughts” folder, so to speak.

      I think the similarities between the teachings of Buddha, Zoroaster, Jesus and say Lao Tse, are more likely stemmed from our common human condition. It is true, that all of the abowe come from Asia and both a commercial and cultural connection between the locales where these notions were born has long existed, but human ideas are less unique, than we tend to think. For example feathers in a cap, hat, or helmet are an universal method of adornment and just because both the Conquistadors and Aztecs wore them, we can not assume one of these groups copied the habit from the other just because there was contact between them. In fact we can point to a cultural continuation for both cultures of wearing feathers long befor they had contact. This is not to say they were not culturally influenced by each other, just that one should not jump into too detailed conclusions.

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      • We can always come up with reasons to believe the unusual, BUT we also can always come up with reasons to not believe the obvious. Aztecs wearing feathers n their headress can de directly connected to aboriginal people on Turtle Island wearing eagle feathers in their head dressings.
        It is quite possible Hinduism and Judaism were related 5000 years earlier. Hindism and Jainism changed into Buddhism and centuries later Judaism changed into Christianity, and later into Islam. Anything is possible, even when it seems unlikely. In my personal visio of pre-history, religion started from one man creating spirits with which he interceded with on behalf of his tribrspeople because he was too scared of death to be a hunter of early mammoths or bears, etc.
        He stayed home with the women, children, and elderly but was still able to claim his piece of the carcasses of whatever hunters brought home to feed their families. The more privileges he won for himself the more other cowards copied him.
        From this one man grew all religions and philosophies.

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        • Agreed, though I do not think Judaism is quite as old as that. We should propably speak of proto-Hinduism and proto-Judaism. New religions are constantly emerging and tend to evolve all the time. In my lifetime the rigid Finnish Lutheran state church has opened priesthood to women. Today there are almost as many female priests as there are male ones here. Apparently their god does not care what sort of dangly reproductive organs the ritual expert is sporting after all (good for him), though generations of believers were convinced they just knew how their god wanted the priesthood to pee like and were pretty sure this was a terribly important detail. It kind of puts into perspective wether to believe something on faith is at all a good method to evaluate reality.

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        • It kind of puts into perspective wether to believe something on faith is at all a good method to evaluate reality. — Absolutely! Great observation. Too bad more don’t pay attention to such wisdom.

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        • As far as I could tell, from the outside, many churches were afraid of losing tithing parishoners (using tithing in a general sense) if they did not allow women to head churches. This is just another sign that religions have nothing to do with gods in my mind. These decisions come from humans, not from a God or gods.

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    • The disciples listened for what they wanted to hear. They were self-centered and dense (like me). The stuff he wanted to say was ‘more than they could bear’ until he sent his Spirit: “He will guide you into all truth.”

      Relationship with God isn’t an overnight sensation. It’s more trial and error and repeat. It’s following Christ’s orders: ‘Love God first, then love people.’ It’s my eyes meeting his when helping someone. It’s a relationship.

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  7. It’s interesting to note that even some who profess to ‘believe’ still speak of Jesus in the past tense.
    One message that seems to have filtered through the mythology more strongly than anything (to me, anyway) is that Jesus was an ordinary man, and no more or less the son of a god than anybody else. Any concept of ‘God’ was to be found not in the heavens but within him, just as it is to be found within us all. Jesus’ therefore, was a construct of all men (and women), and remains so.
    Jesus is God. But no more so than are you and I. That is the message, as far as I can tell. Many people define God as being ‘all powerful’, but ‘all responsible’ would be a more apt description. Most of us are simply ‘over awed’ by such responsibility and choose to assign it to a nonexistent higher power rather than acknowledge that the responsibility is ours alone (and, simultaneously, ours together).
    The mythical entity of Jesus seemed to understand this but failed to get the message across, for the most part.

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  8. Jesus Christ came to life the first time someone stubbed their toe. Only I usually drop an f bomb in there. 😉

    Was he/she real? Even if that was so, and I don’t believe it for a moment, does it matter at all now? IMO it matters as much as the rest of the dead gods. Which is not one little bit.

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  9. If we play the game of considering the Gospels as historical fairly contemporary sources and put them into the Hellenistc and Jewish context, it is more than likely they are based on an amalgam of several individuals fitting into the narrative. As sources for example Mathew is merely a later extrapolation of Mark.

    Assuming there was a particular individual, Yeshua could be seen as a Nazarine ascetist, who turned into a wandering preacher. He seems to have tried to recreate a Jewish identity, but his vision appears to be filled with influences from around the multi-national & multi-cultural Roman empire and beyond, wich was more typical than not. Obviously sporting some Zoroasterian ideas and perhaps even influences from Buddhism. By some he was considered to be a “son of god”, meaning he kept the commandments. The term was used to refer both angels and the patriarchs, but also just any “holy” man.

    He caught the attention of crowds by appealing to the better nature of humans, some healing skills and a few parlour tricks, but to his misfortune he also caught the eye of conservative religious leaders, who – stripped of their former power – turned to the lawenforcement of the empire. Any new religious movement offering alternative set of values is a threat to those weilding power in the name of gods and profiting from worship of gods.

    The Romans did not consider him a real threat, but saw him as an asset to exact their divade and conquer policy and sold him to the highest bidder (rich merchant follower of his Joseph of Arimathea) after staging a mock trial and execution – the latter not getting much attention from the crowds, or even from his personal buddies. He survived and later that led superstitious people to think it was the resurrection he talked about, when he wanted people to renew their lives for the better.

    He hid for a while and either died of his wounds sustained while being interrogated by the Romans on his alledged subversive activity, or left tired and disappointed.

    After the trauma of the failed Jewish revolt there was a social order for a story about a different Jewish hero. How the stories about him got interpreted in Roman/Hellenic/Egyptian religious culture explain why the small Jewish cult turned into a separate religion and the preacher character became worshipped as a god. But that is a nother story…

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    • Consider this: if we make it, if we survive, if sometime in the next hundred years we somehow find a way off this ball of rock and her atmosphere’s rapidly deteriorating compatibility with carbon-based lifeforms … we will have been turned out of the garden.

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        • Arnold, I think our “inherent nature” –meaning our essential character– is to question the whys and wherefores of our lives … and this is exactly why many have followed the path of Science to study such things and provide reasonable and rational answers.

          Unfortunately, there are others who attempt to assign supernaturalism to the “unknown” and ignore the value of education and enlightenment, thus sorely misguiding susceptible individuals with fanciful tales involving legendary deeds and beings.

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        • There is a presumption in your question that there
          is a god, and this god is your god, Yahweh.
          If this man-made Canaanite deity were real and one considers his exploits which are those of a genocidal meglomaniac, what sort of Intellectually Disabled person would worship such a monster?

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        • I have to ask, Arnold … have you ever closely read the bible? I’m NOT talking about the New Testament or the deeds of Jesus. I’m asking if you have read the entire bible, in particular the various books in the Old Testament. If you have, then I can’t help but question how you can say God is not a monster.

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        • So you tacitly acknowledge the heinous actions he committed and / commanded were the actions of a genocidal meglomaniac.
          Now, the question remains,why do you worship such an entity?

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        • Jesus Of Nazareth ( Christ is a title NOT a name) is considered to be your god,Yahweh in human form( flesh).
          You acknowledge this ,yes?
          Therefore your moral compass is a skewed as your god’s.

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        • Well that’s good then, as god can then be the meanest cruelest SOB that ever existed, since there’s no moral compass for him or his believers.

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        • Well, maybe He had to be because of how mankind was in those days. Completely lawless. Sure there were kings and rulers but they all served their own agenda. Cruel, brutal, rulers who tortured men, women and children for power and greed. Don’t get me wrong, we have plenty of that today, but, I believe from history it was a very brutal time. Just my thoughts.

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        • That’s the kind of magical thinking that got us into this mess.

          Recalling that in all legend lay a kernel of fact, reading the fabrications koran, bible, and torah in larger, historical context with other fabrications lain down in stone it is in fact quite easy to afford “Intelligent Design” a measure of credibility. When chariots with wheels of fire flitting about, vast arks propelling the seeds of life across vast empty spaces, and fathers asking of their wives “be this my son, or that of a “giant?” are lain aside the physical record it isn’t all that far fetched to supposit that at some point in the past half-million years extra-terrestrial travelers – for whatever reason: pure science, sheer boredom, desperate survival, or profit – genetically interfered with the development of the proto-humans they found roaming the savannahs of Northern and Western Africa. Not only are we but fleas agitating the hide of a far greater organism, but some bastard’s abandoned science project, if not cattle, or pigs, as it were, as well.

          Wrap the twelve percent of your brain you use around that.

          You are a clear and present danger to my grandchildren’s futures, one that need be eliminated.

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        • Jesus Christ said “Come unto me.. I am the way.” So that’s what I did, am doing and am going to do. His call is a yes or no choice not a directive to reform the world. He came into the world to separate his way from the world way.

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        • Chose to do without him? i’m sorry but this kind of pious platitude is why I find the Abrahamic religions so repellent. Your God set up his i no ent, ignorant creation to fail! Being all knowing, the Fall was part of His PLAN. why is that a good thing? Why are you blaming the victims? You claim to get all kinds of war and fuzzy lurrrrv for your hell fire breathing Jesus, but some of us don’t find much morality or hope in. our toxic good news.slaves

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    • i think it’s a memory of the creation of sedentary agriculture. peasants did not live as well as early hunters and gatherers until the Victorian Age. the old ways were Eden, before priests and kings and starvation.

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        • OK, I know this entire Eden thing is off topic and a bit of a red herring, but if we look at this particular creation myth, it is obviously related to the other myths and cultures of its area of origin. The first dude is made of clay, like in older similar myths – easy to see where that idea came from. The Sumerian gods were drunk, when they formed the first humans out of clay and regretted the deed, when they got sober (or hangover). The Bilical god “makes clothes out of leather” for the exiles from paradise. I wonder how the generations of believers have visioned this to have happened? A god killing, skinning, tanning and sewing these clothes together, or just magically snapping them into existance out of thin air?

          Anyway, the Cain&Abel incident is the story of a nomadic people, like the early hebrew, who herded sheep and goat. Of course in their story their god (invisible sky god – oh so typical to all nomadic people, from the Mongols to the Navaho) favours them and not the stupid toiling farm boy. Who gets jealous of the nomad for the good (and well earned – just by being a herder) fortune. Is that not the most obvious excuse people give themselves today? “Others can not stand me because of my good fortune, just because they are envious of me.”

          The Jesus character is tied to all these myths, the meaning of wich may once have been clear, but many of them had already turned obscure to the people of his alledged timeline. For supernatural stories a little obscurity seems to grant credibility, when any other story, especially any we would consider to hold the truth, should suffer from inexplainable events and inconsistent narrative.

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        • Do not worry Arnold. We do not choose what we believe. We believe what we find believable. It is how we seek what to believe in, that we do choose. We may choose a good method (like science, journalism and integrity) or a poor method (such as hearsay, guessing and vague expression) to find out the truth. Or we may simply accept our preconceptions. That is the easy way out, but having faith in our biases rarely brings us closer to any objective reality. Would you not agree?

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        • I don’t know about getting closer to objective reality- my faith and life and identity is in the person of Christ, right now. My primary relationship is with God in the daily mix of people, places and things.

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  10. Thinking more about this, I ran across this article from Bart Erhman’s book. I had heard of the book and know the author is a religious historian at Duke University. He was born into Christian fundamentalism, but got free and is now either an atheist or agnostic. But he believes Jesus was a real person. The comments are better than the article and worth a read. Many don’t agree with him.
    I find it fascinating that even IF, this man (not a super natural man) existed and had a small following and was martyred in death, that 2000 years later, with a chunk of his early life missing and much of the texts taken from earlier Greek and Pagan religious dogmas, that this whole thing has morphed into one of the largest religions in the world and controls and dominates so many governments, culture and laws. While good things are sometimes done, this religion in particular, has been responsible for atrocities towards non whites, started numerous wars, Crusades, Spanish Inquisitions, witch trials here and now in modern times, filling itself up with hatred towards Jews once again, minorities, immigrants, the LGBTQ community, women, as always, and supporting the most abominable man to come into leaderships in our country ever.

    And all of this based on a pure fantasy.

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    • Mary, you wrote While good things are sometimes done, I contend these SAME ‘”good things” can be and are done by the non-religious. They just don’t get the credit that the “Christians” do.

      On the other side of the coin, the infidels get all the blame when things go wrong whereas the Christians, who many times are just as or more guilty, cover their tracks and push it all under the rug.

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    • Oh, come on Mary. Be reasonable. A few genocides over the years, sure. And yes, a bit of rape and murder. Well … OK….. a lot of rape and murder. But gee …. there’re just getting the hang of it. It’s only a little over twenty centuries, after all. These things take time …. especially if you have to make the whole thing up as you go along. Who knows? The Nazis might have turned out to be a lovely bunch if we’d only given them a chance to iron out the bugs.
      And we have to account for a few things lost in translation over time. ‘Love thy neighbour’ might easily sound like, ‘kill anybody who doesn’t look and sound like you’ through the fog of time.

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  11. Jesus Was a Capricorn, Kris Kristopherson, Ode to John Prine, long time ago …

    Jesus was a Capricorn
    He ate organic food
    He believed in love and peace
    And never wore no shoes

    Long hair, beard and sandles
    And a funky bunch of friends
    Reckon we’d just nail him up
    If he came down again

    [Chorus:]
    ‘Cause everybody’s gotta have somebody to look down on
    Prove they can be better than at any time they choose
    Someone doin’ somethin’ dirty decent folks can frown on
    If you can’t find nobody else, then help yourself to me

    Eggheads fussin’ rednecks cussin’
    Hippies for their hair
    Others laugh at straights who laugh at
    Freaks who laugh at squares

    Some folks hate the Whites
    Who hate the Blacks who hate the Klan
    Most of us hate anything that
    We don’t understand

    [Chorus]

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  12. I’m a fan of Jack Daniels.( On the rocks)
    You would know better that I what is Yahweh’s favourite spirit. I’m guessing he … Oops, sorry, He … is a Gin and Tonic man,yes?

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  13. Good grief! No politics and she wants me to keep it clean. Dang nabbit. 🙂

    One can learn everything one needs to know about the real Jesus by reading the book:

    “Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal” by Christopher Moore, published in 2002. 🙂 We are talking an eye witness account here.

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  14. There was no such person as Jesus. Nazareth didn’t exist until at least 300 c.e., when it was created by the emperor’s mother Helena as a tourist destination for Christians. (maybe there was village there before that but it wasn’t called Nazareth).

    The persona Jesus was created by the Romans to subdue the various Jewish sects, some of which were beginning to call themselves Christians, some (but not all) were quite rebellious against the Roman rule. Whatever the name of the leader these sects may have revered, he was merged into one main story of a preacher who preached love & submission to authority, which is what the Romans wanted & is what all governments want. HOW CONVENIENT.

    In a spiritual sense, it does not matter one bit who the “real” Jesus was, if he was a historical figure or if the Bible is historically correct. I think it’s quite obvious that the Bible is patently untrue … just enough there to hook people into thinking that it “could” be real history. But as far as spirituality & religion is concerned, whether or not Jesus is a real person, who cares? We don’t worship gods/goddesses because they were once real people. It’s not important with Jesus’ father. Why is this important with Jesus?

    He’s not a real person. He’s completely made up. There’s nothing wrong with this, either. He’s a god, he’s not supposed to be a real human being.

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  15. Therefore, one can assert with confidence that, either you have no sense of ethics or morality whatsoever, or, you are simply an indoctrinated fucking moron?
    Of the two which do you feel you align with?

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    • Well, I probably would have agreed with that assessment myself, but, the Jewish Rabbi’s hated Jesus, but, they did believe in the words of their prophets. So, you do bring up a good point.

      I’ve got to say, I’m really enjoying this post and reading the comments.

      Like

  16. I think there may have been a germ of reality behind the figure of Jesus just as there were (perhaps!) shadows of some real people behind King Arthur and Robin Hood and a history of interaction and conflict behind the story of the Trojan War.

    I’ve come to believe Jesus is a Thought Entity which has changed direction with the changing intentions of its followers over the centuries. I suspect the “original” idea of Jesus was as an inspirational figurehead of the many revolts and rebellions in Jewish history. The name “Jesus” is, after all, the same as the name “Joshua” and a whole lot of the Jesus of the Gospels is simply reframing of Jewish prophecies and poetic works. Some Hellenistic philosophy was added to the mix, Constantine took advantage of Christianity to legitimize political violence and Divine Right, and it was off to the races. To me, there’s a clear link from the Jesus of Constantine to the Jesus of the Crusades and onward to the Jesus of White Christian Nationalism.

    The real miracle, IMHO, is that the idea of Jesus teaching the love of neighbor managed to survive at all. As a Graeco-Roman polytheist , I’m inclined to think that may have a lot to do with continued interest through the centuries in the writings of classical philosophers like Marcus Aurelius:

    The universe made rational creatures for the sake of each other, with an eye toward mutual benefit based on true value and never for harm.

    “Revere the gods; watch over human beings. Our lives are short. The only rewards of our existence here are an unstained character and unselfish acts.”
    — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

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    • Hello HTGB! Thank you for stopping by. Your perspective is … interesting. 🙂 And to me, it is just one more indication that “Jesus” is nothing more than an “icon” in that he can be viewed in so many different ways. If he truly were all that believers claim him to be, surely ALL would agree on his persona.

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  17. Jesus was the Son of God who sacrificed His life for sinners by dying on the cross. Because He was divine, it was through His blood we were redeemed. I find it interesting how many people automatically assume He wasn’t real, but, have never even read the Bible. And for silverapplequeen I guess you didn’t realize, Jesus wasn’t born in Nazareth he was born in Bethlehem, which history tells us was established in 1400 B.C. before Christ was born. And according to the Tell al-Amarna letters from the Egyptian governor of Palestine to the Pharaoh Amenhotep III he mentioned Bethlehem back around the 1350B.C.

    And the thought that the Bible was nothing but a bunch of stories put together by the Romans is ridiculous. Because even the Quran speaks of God, Jesus and Jesus mother Mary. The Romans didn’t care, but, the Jewish Pharisees did. Because Jesus was a threat to their traditions, their power, their way of life choosing to live in sin.

    Everyone has a choice to make, you can choose to learn about him or you can turn away. But remember this, every word you speak you will be held accountable before God, every action you make you will be held accountable and regardless of what you believe, does not change the fact that he is coming back.

    Of course, for those who read the Bible, we know the signs! I wish you all well.

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    • Sorry, Robin, but I really don’t appreciate individuals coming to my blog to “preach.” Besides, I would say with almost 100% certainty that regular visitors to this blog have “been there, done that” and long ago made their “choice.” Therefore, nothing you have written is new. It’s just the same-old, same-old that every believer uses in their attempt to “win lost souls.”

      Liked by 2 people

      • Sorry you feel that way, but, I wasn’t rude or ugly, just stated the facts. Your site came up under the tag Jesus if you don’t want Christians defending the truth you may want to consider using a different tag, but, just a suggestion. I’m not trying to tell you are your followers what to believe, just stating fact when people are so misinformed.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Oh, by the way, Silverapplequeen (who is perfectly able give you a better answer than I, but here goes my attempt) did not refer to the birth place of Jesus at all, as you seem to mistakenly think, but the Bible naming Jesus “of Nazareth”, while no such place even existed. That does put the Biblical account of this main character of the New Testament into a very unreliable position on just about anything said about him in the book. Totally regardless of Bethlehem. Does it not?

          New York is a real place, but it does not make Spiderman any more real, that he alledgedly advemtures on the streets of this very real city. Batman lives alledgedly in Gotham city, but since there is no such place, that alone should tell you he is an imaginary character, even if you were otherwise deluded into believing, that Batman is for real. Right?

          Liked by 2 people

        • Well, there have been settlements in and around the area from ancient times, but the name Nazareth only appears a couple of centuries after the events of the New Testament. In his otherwise extremely precise list of villages and cities of the area Josephus does not mention Nazareth. The oldest dateble findings in the excavations of old Nazareth are from the Byzantine era. If it existed before the Jewish revolt, there should be something. The Byzantine empress, Silverapplequeen referred to, made a trip to Palestine and claimed to have visited all the New Testament sites and that she found the “true cross”, wich was all nonsense, but she had the power and her publicity stunt supported the church, so it all went unchallenged before modern times.

          Most likely the description of Jesus as a “Nazarine” is an error and misconception by later generations, of him being called a Nazirine – an ascetic, but blessed devotee of the Hebrew god. Does that make sense to you?

          Liked by 1 person

        • I understand your explanation and it makes perfect sense, but, I believe what the Bible says. But I appreciate the information you provided. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of faith.

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        • I guess so. I hear faith is a comforting substitute for logic, as it confirms biases and preconceptions. Never had any, so I would not really know.

          Liked by 2 people

        • @Consoled reader, that is science for you. Every time you thought you knew something, it turns out, that new research had revealed more on the subject and indeed there was more to learn. Is it not wonderfull?

          Yet, even if they found a settlement there, we do not know what the name of the place is, if it is not in the meticulously assembled list of Josephus.

          Thanks for the link though. I have to read it in good time.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Oh and sorry I forgot to mention, Nazareth was a settlement founded around 2200 BC so it did exist long before Christ was born. Just saying.

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    • @Robindd41, I think you deserve an answer and hopefully with the acception of Nan – the monarch of this blog – I can give you a satisfactory explanation to issues you mentioned. First, people can make the assumption, that the Jesus character presented in the Bible is likely to be imaginary, if they have read the proper research done on the subject, just like on any historical stories, without having delved into the actual source material. It is easy to conclude, that Julius Caesar propably conquered the Gauls, without never having read his book on it and altough he is a fairly reliable contemporary wittness, we do not assume his claim, that there were unicorns in Gallia to be true. Why? Because “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”. The claims about Jesus are barely contemporary. We really have minimal information as to who actually made them and some of them are extraordinary indeed. Like the claim you have repeated here, that he was a son of a god, as such a natural claim in the Romano-Hellenistic world, that had seen the sons of gods, like Alexander of Macedonia walk the earth , but in meaning something totally different to the religious conservative Jews (the Pharisees), to whom it only referred to a man keeping to the commandments of their god, such as Abraham. Wich was Jesus, if he truly lived? Occams razor dictates the least wondrous to be more likely true. Agreed?

      The fact that Quran agrees with the Bible offers no extra credibility. One was compiled from a pile of texts hundreds of years after the alledged events by a bunch of dudes at Nikea with invested interrests to a particular version of the story and the other is removed even further by more centuries from the alledged events. Neither provide any even remotely reliable evidence of any gods existing, so the question remains, if nonexistant entities can even have sons. Do you believe Alexander the Great was a son of Zeus, as he himself was recorded claiming, or do you think it more likely he was the son of king Philip? Why?

      The Roman emperors did started to care about Jesus a few generations later and assimilated Christianity to the state, that then fell apart.

      Everyone of us has plenty of descisions to make every day. Wether to do the right thing or be selfish. How we determine and measure good and bad varies. Some are more rational and others rely more on emotion and intuition. Some rely on old books, others to scientific evidence in their estimations on what is real. All our actions and inaction has consequences and we are responsible for our choises regardless, if there are any gods we are accountable to, or not. An actual adult bears that reponsibility and acts accordingly wether there are rewards, or punishments handed by gods.

      Hundreds of generations of faithfull Christians have thought they have recognized the signs of the return of Jesus in their own times, but have been wrong, wich only goes to prove how bad method faith is in evaluating what is true, or not.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I agree with you on your explanation, that’s why I wasn’t here to witness. Just giving my answers as a believer.

        But I will say, the Biblical prophets who spoke of Christ coming foretold of his birth, his death and resurrection exactly as it happened. Now, the typical Jewish people don’t believe Jesus was their Messiah.

        they believe their Messiah is here now. They’ve been putting up signs in New York City stating their Messiah is here, and, according to Bible Prophesy that would be the antichrist. And I do understand people believe differently, that’s not an issue for me. But all one needs to do is take a look at our world and realize there’s more going on than meets the eye. But I do understand and I thank you for your courtesy. Have a wonderful weekend.

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        • It is almost as you had a completely different version of the Bible, than the one I read. The prophets in my Bible are all terribly vague about most things and when it comes to Jesus they are especially so, apart from some things, that could seem to fit him because he and his followers made their actions to fit the stories, or because such things were imported into the story during editing, to give it substance and credibility. If you read for example Isaiah, the description of the “man of pains” often thought to describe Jesus, it is so obscure, that it could just as well be a description of Abraham Lincoln, or Che Guevara, or any number of people. Traditional Hebrew interpritation, however before and after Jesus is that it is not any one person, but the people of Israel.

          I do not know many Jews, but I am guessing not many of them believe the messiah is here now. Not more, than of people identifying as Christians think the end is nigh.

          Yes, I agree with you, that there always is more than meets the eye in the world. I just do not like to jump to conclusions about what it is, before it meets the eye – that is, before it has been scientifically studied and recognized. Because the scientific method is the only even remotely reliable way to come to any truth and even that sometimes fails us.

          Have a very nice weekend you too.

          Liked by 1 person

      • Actually, Nazareth was a settlement around 2200 BC that existed long before Christ made his appearance. And archaeology along with historians and yes some scientist are able to back up claims found in the Bible. But as I stated before I wasn’t here to witness, I was here to defend my belief, just as some of you were defending yours. Isn’t that what we’re about, whether we disagree or not, having the courtesy to listen to each other.

        And I do understand where Nan is coming from because majority of Christians do take on that persona of witnessing to everyone they come across while having a pushy, you’ve got to believe my way or else, mentality. And that’s just wrong! Because we’re not all called to witness.

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        • Which scientists support that ‘Nazareth’ was a settlement around 2200 bce?
          Have you ever read the Nazareth farm report?
          Have you ever researched the work of Bagatti?

          Nothing in either of these archeological surveys/ digs of the area found any evidence of a village, let alone a city as described in the gospel.
          Neither is the area on a cliff.
          You remember where the inhabitants wanted to sling Jesus from, yes?

          When Constantine’s mother, Helena went to the area, ostensibly on a pilgrimage, she apparently asked some locals if this was where Jesus lived and was told, surprise, surprise, yes.

          Mary’s well was pointed out to her and also some sort of a cave where she lived/stayed.
          Helena was so enamoured she ordered the construction of a church.

          It’s just baffling she wasn’t shown the tomb as well.
          However, a fair amount of the cross our hero was crucified on was discovered and the original nails too. Also, some time later, against all known biological data, a number of foreskins that once adorned the penis of Jesus himself were found.
          Miracles never cease, right?

          And the crowd cried out joyously, “Hoorah… we are all saved by the blood of Jesus!”
          And they all went home for tea and buns!
          Amen The End.

          🤦🤦🤦‍♂️

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  18. Just so you’re aware, I wasn’t trying to witness to you are any of your followers, I was sitting the record straight. I’m about the truth, not lies. Have a wonderful week and weekend and hope my comment didn’t disturb you too much.

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    • You weren’t trying to witness? Puleeze. That’s the core reason behind every believer’s discussion related to their faith … along with “muted” warnings, e.g. “But remember this, every word you speak you will be held accountable before God, every action you make you will be held accountable.”

      You write that you are about truth, not lies. Unfortunately, as we’ve seen in the political world, truth is often what a person wants it to be. The dividing line comes when the information and/or statements can be substantiated by clear and certain FACTS.

      Thank you for your good wishes. And no, I’m not disturbed … except by the fact that so many have been hoodwinked into believing (and attempting to live their lives by) a story that has little to no legitimacy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Your wrong. My job isn’t to witness to everyone only to those who are called. See you’re getting mixed up with those who claim to be Christians. Not everyone who claims to be actually is. I was merely standing up for what I believe, that’s it. Contrary to what you may believe, I go into non-believers site all the time because it’s the subject matter. I like poetry, so often go into the poetry section and reading poetry from others. If someone ask them I’ve no issue explaining, but, if the don’t ask them I don’t.

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      • I agree with you regarding the political world, in fact, I believe it’s completely corrupt.

        Everything gets twisted. But, I wasn’t here to witness to you are your followers I was defending my belief and the reasons for it. That’s it.

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  19. Because humans are multicellular, complex organisms. The cells inside our bodies are specialized. Meaning, each cell performs a unique and specific function. The human body has over 200 different types of cells with each having a different structure, size, shape, function and organelles. 

    Now the big bang theory, in simplistic terms, basically describes the Universe heating up, exploding with fragments being projected into space and eventually creating plants, animals and mankind. Totally random. But if one really looks at the human body that makes no sense. Humans have approximately 30,000 miles of blood vessels alone. Then when you take into account the endocrine system, the pulmonary system, the cardiac system, our bones, our brains and so forth. It reflects that we were purposely created. And that’s just mankind. So when I really thought about how our bodies work and how each of our organs has its own function yet works in accordance with one another, it really had me thinking.

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    • On first glance this has very little, if anything to do with the topic post, however I think you are on the right track. To even consider it as a possibility, that Jesus was some sort of divine avatar, we would have to be first establish, that a god – son of wich Jesus alledgedly was – actually exists. This particular god is often described as a creator entity, that made humans in his own image.

      The complexity of human organs is explained accross the board of all involved sciences from biology to geology and from paleontology to genetics by the evolutionary processes. If there was some god, that set it in motion, or not they do not discuss, but what they tell us, is that such a demiurg is not really needed to explain it happening.

      The scientific theories about the origin of the universe and a much later event, the origin of life do not claim it all happened at “totally random”, rather the opposite, but neither do they deposite agency at the onset of either. Intelligence is a product of these processes and it only appears as a goal, like an arrow in the wood would look like it was targeted at the tree it finally did hit. We can claim gods or pixies designed life, but since we do not know they did, it is an empty argument for the existance of either gods, or pixies. Do you see what I mean?

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      • On first glance this has very little, if anything to do with the topic post — Thank you for noticing, rautakyy! As most of my “regulars” know, I prefer that discussions remain “on-topic.” Just a word to the wise for anyone who isn’t a “regular.” 🙂

        And just as a reminder, this post was related to folks coming up with their personal description of who Jesus was … not why he came, what he did while he was here, his heritage, etc. IOW, it was meant to be a “fun” post.

        Like

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