Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jesus?

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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earlydude
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Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jesus?

Post by earlydude » Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:14 pm

Obviously it's speculative as to whether the idea of Jesus of Nazareth was invented or not, and even if so, the individual responsible may be totally lost to history. But for the sake of argument/theory, let's say this invention did occur and that the storyteller's name is preserved in the historical record. If we consider their means, motive, and opportunity. Who are our prime
suspects?

Marcion? Cerdo? Cephas? Ebion? Clement? Simon? Basilides? Paul? Cerinthus? Justin?
Last edited by earlydude on Fri Mar 11, 2016 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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toejam
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Re: Top 5 suspects that could have invented the historical J

Post by toejam » Fri Mar 11, 2016 2:17 pm

Paul. While I don't believe this for a second, I've often wondered if the whole thing was a scam by Paul. He made it all up and went around starting churches telling them that there was a mother church in Jerusalem that he was collecting money for, etc.
My study list: https://www.facebook.com/notes/scott-bignell/judeo-christian-origins-bibliography/851830651507208

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MrMacSon
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Mar 11, 2016 2:52 pm

earlydude wrote:Obviously it's speculative as to whether the idea of Jesus of Nazareth was invented or not, and even if so, the individual responsible may be totally lost to history. But for the sake of argument/theory, let's say this invention did occur and that the storyteller's name is preserved in the historical record. If we consider their means, motive, and opportunity. Who are our prime
suspects?

Marcion? Cerdo? Cephas? Ebion? Clement? Simon? Basilides? Paul? Cerinthus? Justin?
I think various components of the Jesus the Christ of Nazareth story developed separately.


The resurrection and the 2nd coming could be variations of a similar narrative;
  • and, they could be related to Carrier's propositions around Zech 3 & Zech 6 (Elements 6 & 40 in OHJ)
The 'Ascension' could be another dimension that developed separately.


The human aspects could be related to a real preacher dude, but I would place that guy somewhere in the late 1st century to early-mid 2nd century.

Various real historical events & people have been portrayed in the NT - the census around which Joseph & Mary travelled to Bethlehem is likely to be the Census of Quirinius in 6 AD/CE; Herod (the Great) has been narrated as the cause of them fleeing to Egypt and, after his death, the elevation of his son Archelaus is mentioned in Matthew (2:13-23) as the reason Joseph, Mary and Jesus went to Galilee, but note it took two dreams for Joseph to make those decisions (Archelaus was banished to Gaul in 6 AD/CE for mishanding rebellions around the Census).
  • note Herod died in 4 BC/BCE, yet the Census of Quirinius was in 6 AD/CE, so these the NT narratives are back to front with the real time-frams
The crucifixion may have been borrowed from Cassius Dio's record of the last known execution of a 'King of the Jews', Antigonus II, in 37 BC/BCE. There are no records anywhere of crucifixions from ~4 AD/CE to ~ 48 AD/CE.

Various events of the 40s & 50s AD/CE recorded by Josephus show up in the NT as portrayed as having happened in the 20s & 30s.

outhouse
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by outhouse » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:06 pm

earlydude wrote:. Who are our prime
suspects?

Marcion? Cerdo? Cephas? Ebion? Clement? Simon? Basilides? Paul? Cerinthus? Justin?

None have ever been put forward that carry any credibility.

There are no prime suspects that explain any evidence.

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MrMacSon
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:14 pm

The beginning and conclusion of Jesus's 'Parable of the Minas' in the Gospel of Luke chapter 19 may refer to Archelaus' journey to Rome, as told by Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews, 17:11). Some interpreters conclude from this that Jesus' parables and preaching made use of events familiar to the people as examples for bringing his spiritual lessons to life. Others read the allusion as arising from later adaptations of Jesus's parables in the oral tradition, before the parables were recorded in the gospels.
  • "A nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and then return…But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We do not want this man to reign over us.'… 'But as for these enemies of mine,' [said the nobleman] 'who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slaughter them before me.' " (Luke 19:12, 19:14, 19:27)
and this parable is different to the parables in Matt 25:14-30, suggesting they have different sources.

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MrMacSon
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:27 pm

It is likely the Pauline letters were written independently about another savior figure, and later redacted to align with the synoptic gospels and the other NT.

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MrMacSon
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:34 pm

MrMacSon wrote: The human aspects [of the NT Jesus character] could be related to a real preacher dude, but I would place that guy somewhere in the late 1st century to early-mid 2nd century.
There could also be elements of counter-Roman revolutionaries such as

* Judas the Galilean who lead the revolt during the Census of Quirinius held in 6 AD/CE

* the ‘Egyptian Prophet’, the messianic leader who had previously spent time “in the wilderness” and had “advised the multitude … to go along with him to the Mount of Olives”, where he “would show them from hence how, at his command, the walls of Jerusalem would fall down”

* Simon bar Kokhba, the commander of the 132–136 AD/CE revolt, who was acclaimed as a Messiah, a heroic figure who could restore Israel.
Last edited by MrMacSon on Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

outhouse
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by outhouse » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:40 pm

MrMacSon wrote:It is likely the Pauline letters were written independently about another savior figure, and later redacted to align with the synoptic gospels and the other NT.

Nothing you have ever been able to substantiate with any amount of credibility.

There really is no evidence of later redaction to align with the gospels either.

outhouse
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by outhouse » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:43 pm

MrMacSon wrote: The human aspects could be related to a real preacher dude

.

We have the parallels to Apollonius of Tyana, yet we don't know if the NT text copied his story, or the other way around.

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MrMacSon
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Re: Top suspects that could have invented the historical Jes

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Mar 11, 2016 3:52 pm

outhouse wrote:
MrMacSon wrote:It is likely the Pauline letters were written independently about another savior figure, and later redacted to align with the synoptic gospels and the other NT.
Nothing you have ever been able to substantiate with any amount of credibility.

There really is no evidence of later redaction to align with the gospels either.
Ad Loman argued that in a series of papers published in the 1880s in, I think, a or the Theological Magazine: 'Theologische Zeitschrift' -
  • 1882. Quaestiones Paulinae. Prolegomena. Necessity of a revision of the foundations of our knowledge of the original Paulinism, Theological Magazine .
    1882. Quaestiones Paulinae. Investigation into the authenticity of the letter to the Galatians, 1 st chapter, the external evidence, ib.
    1882. Quaestiones Paulinae. Continuation. The external evidence etc. ib.
    1882. Quaestiones Paulinae. Defense and clarification, ib.
    1883. Quaestiones Paulinae. Second drop and closing of the first chapter, ib.

    1884. The Apocalypse of Barnabas, Theological Magazine .

    1885. Het Getuigenis Aangaande Johannes In Het Fragment Van Muratori

    1886. Quaestiones Paulinae II, § 1. Review and transition to the second chapter, ib.

    1887. An anonymous English about the origins of Christianity, ib.
http://www.dbnl.org/tekst/_jaa002189801 ... 1_0016.php

These do not seem to be available in English (probably in Dutch), and their contents seem to have largely been relayed by Detering
Last edited by MrMacSon on Fri Mar 11, 2016 4:15 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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