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The object of criticism, the Biblical Jesus, needs to be better known,
This review is from: Jesus Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (and Why We Don't Know About Them) (Paperback)
Did you read The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine before reading Jesus, Interrupted? Credit should be given to Thomas Paine's Age of reason.
Some of the issues raised in Jesus, Interrupted are not new to readers of The Age of Reason.
Parts of the book I found informative and insightful.
I disagree that a lay believer can read books such as
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine
- The Christ Conspiracy: The Greatest Story Ever Sold by Acharya S
- King Jesus: From Egypt (Kam) to Camelot by Ralph Ellis
- the theatricalized memoir Water Bearing Fish, Part I: Biblical Accuracy in Ancient History and Tests of Faiths Held in the Intellect / The Frustrations and the Aspirations by Steefen
- the nonfiction book extraction, Insights on the Exodus, King David, and Jesus: The Greatest Bible Study in Historical Accuracy: The Hebrew and Christian Bibles, The Koran, and The Book of Mormon by Steefen
or this book, Jesus, Interrupted, and keep their faith. Some of the faithful prefer to have a faith that is above criticism, a faith that is integrity-tested for the heaven-bound soul. When a faith critic succeeds or appears to succeed, a person's faith is weakened or is no longer carried.
Here's an example and a glaring omission in Bart Ehrman's book.
On page 84, the author speaks of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew having miracles, not signs of proof while in the Gospel of John, the miracles are signs of Jesus' relationship to God.
In the second chapter of John's Gospel, the marriage in Cana has the sign of Jesus changing water to wine; but, this is a party trick devised by Hero (or Heron) of Alexandria (google Hero or Heron of Alexandria, vase, water, and wine).
This is a devastating blow to the Christian. It strengthens religions not stemming from Abraham. It is fuel for atheists, agnostics, the post-Christianity camp, and the anti-clerical/anti-religious camp. The gospels of the New Testament after Thomas Paine and Bart Ehrman are quite bombed. The faithful, whoever is left, surely carry a tattered flag.
Furthermore, in case you have read information which explains the astrotheological content of the Bible, pages 77-81 have a glaring omission. There were synagogues during Jesus' lifetime that had zodiacs in them. It was known that the Age of Taurus had ended when the Age of Aries began. It was known that the Age of Aries was up (the end was near). The end of the age had come. Jesus was the transition icon at the end of the Age of Aries and at the start of the Age of Pisces. You cannot speak of Jesus being an apocalyptic figure or prophet and not speak of the Pisces fish reference, the last sacrifice in the Aries' spirit of the times, lamb of God reference.
The Rosetta Stone has been deciphered. Ancient Egypt corroborates the Bible more than Bart Ehrman's frame of reference admits. Second, the works of Josephus beyond the Testimonium Flavianum, corroborates the Bible more than Bart Ehrman admits. Insights on the Exodus, King David, and Jesus: The Greatest Bible Study in Historical Accuracy: The Hebrew and Christian Bibles, The Koran, and The Book of Mormon sets the stage for the historical-critical approach to Bible study. Bart Ehrman's book is premature in its criticisms.
Jesus, Interrupted does not have an index.
In Chapter Seven, "Who Invented Christianity," Bart Ehrman has a section called "The Transformation of the Apocalyptic Vision," pages 265-266. "In short, with the passing of time, the apocalyptic notion of the resurrection of the body becomes transformed into the doctrine of the immortality of the soul. What emerges is the belief in heaven and hell, a belief not found in the teachings of Jesus or Paul, but one invented in later times by Christians who realized that the kingdom of God never would come to this earth. This belief became a standard Christian teaching, world without end." Before this concluding paragraph, Bart Ehrman says the horizontal dualism of time (life and resurrection) is transformed into a vertical dualism of heaven and hell.
Now, contrast this with my position that the biblically, mythologized Jesus includes a Hellenistic component. Plato gives Socrates the following words: "Homer relates a law that ordains when one's time comes to die, a person who has lived a righteous and pure life shall depart to blessed lands and there remain in complete happiness, free from sorrow. Those whose lives have been wicked and godless shall be imprisoned in places of retribution."