Empty Tomb, Apotheosis, Resurrection By John Granger Cook

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
Post Reply
Posts: 113
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:35 am

Empty Tomb, Apotheosis, Resurrection By John Granger Cook

Post by nightshadetwine » Wed Sep 26, 2018 12:58 pm

I came across this book that was just released that I thought people here would find interesting.
https://books.google.com/books?id=mRJtD ... ok&f=false

From https://www.mohrsiebeck.com/en/book/emp ... 3161565847
In this work, John Granger Cook argues that there is no fundamental difference between Paul's conception of the resurrection body and that of the Gospels; and, the resurrection and translation stories of antiquity help explain the willingness of Mediterranean people to accept the Gospel of a risen savior.
Here's some quotes from the book:
A short discussion of the origins of the most ancient belief in resurrection is appropriate. Theopompus (fourth century B.C.E.) wrote in the eighth book of his Philippica that the "Magi believe people will live again and be immortal and that all that exists will endure by their invocations." The Avestan hymns of praise to various deities, the Yashts, support the claim Theopompus and almost surely date before the time of the Achaemenids (VI-IV B.C.E). Jan N. Bremmer dates Yacht 19 to the time of the Achaemenids and notes that it was in the Saassanian period that resurrection became a major theme. This dating may need some revision. Albert de Jong makes a good case for the Achaemenid kings' role in the development of Zoroastrianism. He concedes that there is no doubt that the Avesta contains texts that are much older than the Achaemenid period."...Yasht 19.11, for example, is clear:
"In order for (His creatures and creations) to make existence brilliant,/ not aging, imperishable,/ not rotting, not putrefying,/ enjoying eternal life, enjoying eternal benefit, enjoying power at will,/ so that the dead will rise again,/ imperishability will come over the living,/ (and) existence will be made brilliant in value."

The Avestan text is part of a recitation which the Saoshyant and his helpers use to "revivify the bodies of the dead and reunite them with their souls at the end of time."...Although the body will be recreated and united with the soul, the emphasis on the raising of the dead implies that human "will regain their disarticulated bodies at the end of time and be resurrected". Vevaina concludes,
"...the existence of two independent Young Avestan references to the resurrection, both of them in genuinely old texts found in different manuscript groups...strongly suggests that the notion of the resurrection was an integral part of the ancient Zoroastrian eschatological myth that was existence in the fist millenium B.C.E., if not earlier."

Although it is intriguing that references to resurrection in ancient Judaism emerge during the Achaemenid period, proving or disproving intercultural influences between Persia and Israel is unnecessary for the purposes of this monograph. In my view one should credit the Zoroastrians with the initial development of the concept of an eschatological resurrection...

In the Ptolemaic-Roman temple at Dendera, Osiris is depicted in several pertinent scenes: in the right side of image one he is lying dead, and Isis and Nepthys mourn him. In the left side of image one he moves his right hand towards his head as he wakes up...The falcon "fluttering over the erect" phallus is a "representation" of the "divine union" of Isis and Osiris from whence she conceived Horus, "the falcon-god"...In image 2, Osiris is depicted "rising from his bed in a floating position". The king presents Osiris with an offering...Texts from the frieze of the West Room Three from the Chapel of Osiris at Dendera vividly describe his resurrection...
(428) 1. O Osiris, receive my water, I am your sister Isis. 2. Take for yourself (the flood) maaty that makes your body young. 3. Take for yourself (the flood) hebebet that makes your flesh live...6. Take for yourself the water of renewal that emerges from the primeval flood...(429) 6. Take for yourself the water of renewal, you live from it...

Clearly Isis is the agent of resurrection and water is fundamental to the process. These traditions are probably quite ancient...The calender at the temple at Dendera contains much evidence for the festival of the month of Khoiak, during which "the death and resurrection of Osiris were enacted."...On the twenty-third[of Khoiak] the statues of Osiris and his relic and Sokar are "embalmed" by Anubis..."The twenty-fifth is the deification of Osiris: after being reconstituted, being returned to life, embalmed, and symbolically interred, he passes to the world of the dead."...

Baal's return to life is illustrated by a text in the Aqhat narrative which Mettinger translates so...Mettinger concludes that "it has been found that the Baal-Mot myth comprises the mytheme of death and return. The return is a return to full and active life."...The opposition in the texts between Baal's death and life may not have a ritual background, but they do indicate that in the myth Baal finally overcomes death...

These narratives of Eudoxus and Zenobius and the summary by Eustathius clearly show that there was an ancient belief in Tyrian Heracles' resurrection...

The review in this chapter thoroughly justifies the continued use of the category of dying and rising gods. The resurrection of Osiris is the closest analogy to the resurrection of Jesus, although Osiris remains in the netherworld - wherever it is located. Horus's resurrection is a clear analogy. The rebirth or resurrection of Dionysus also provides a fairly close analogy to the resurrection of Jesus. The revival of Heracles and probably that of Melqart are also strong analogies...Just as the Greek of the LXX and NT has it's place in the matrix of classical Greek, so the resurrection of Christ can be placed in the matrix of the bodily resurrections of cult figures from the Mediterranean world.

Post Reply