By Ted Belman
I recently drew to the attention of a fellow journalist my 25 page essay on The Historical Jesus.
She circulated it and sent me some of the responses she received.
From an American Christian writer and editor:
This comports with what I decided – after doing extensive study on my own over 40 years ago………….and considering that it took nearly twice as long as the USA has been in existence, for the early leaders of the new Christian religion to compile the New Testament……….added to the fact that throughout that entire period, there was a myriad of competing Christian sects – e.g. the Gnostics – it is irrefutable that 90% of the NT is fabrication.Ted Belman does a fine job with his analysis.
I would only add that the theme of the ‘immaculate conception’ and nearly all of the ‘healings’ and miraculous ‘raising from the dead’ plus the stories and parables attributed to the ‘rabbi’ Jesus had been commonly known for centuries before Jesus’ historical era, due to the 2,000+ years of travel and commerce over the famous Silk Road through all of Mesopotamia and into the Far East – the same routes that Marco Polo would take 1200 years laterSo, the sect of the new Christianity that won the race at the Council of Nicea was the one most palatable to Rome AND to what was quickly evolving into the eastern church at Constantinople………..etc..
………….and the NT has so many contradictions that they also contribute to the dubious nature of the NT’s factual basis.
One example has bothered me the most: Followers claimed Jesus to be ‘The Prince Of Peace.’………Well, Jesus himself is quoted in the NT as having declared, “I come not with Peace, but with THE SWORD.” – Which is it? – I think that much more information will eventually be forthcoming as archeological techniques and strong motivation among biblical scholars continue their search for truth.
From an American Christian writer and activist:
I read the entire essay, and even checked some of the points made by Ted Belman. Much of what he wrote is true, but it does not defeat the Christian theology. Rather than argue with Belman line by line, let me make just three points:
1. Paul and James were ultimately in agreement over accepting Gentiles into the Christian faith. See Acts 15. There were not two rival factions, according to Acts.
2. While Belman suggests that the Christians made up the Messiah story by inserting fragments from Isaiah into the narrative, Christians believe that Jesus was actually the fulfillment of the prophesies found in Exodus, Isaiah (and numerous other writings of the Old Testament prophets).
3. While Muslims believe that Muhammad is a prophet, Christians do not believe Jesus was a prophet. Christians agree with the Jews that the Hebrew Bible was the end of all prophesy – but they go on to believe that Jesus was the fulfillment of that prophesy. So the question remains for the Jews, if a messianic leader for the Jews was prophesied to be of the lineage of David and to be born in Bethlehem, would the Jews even recognize him and rally around him if he appeared? Would they even be able to confirm that he met the prophetic requirements?
From an American Christian writer:
Nonsense by Christian haters. The Jesus Seminar is dominated by secularists and disillusioned religionists. Christianity is not a Nationalist Religion … it is not a religion at all. Why try to destroy that which you have chosen not to understand? Salvation is open to all who choose to accept its promise: Jews, Gentile, slave, free, men and women.