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The Messianic Legacy Paperback – 1 Aug 1996
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"Well documented and often sinister facts" (Oxford Times)
"Pacy and interesting" (Guardian)
The sequel to the bestselling religious thriller, The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail. A thrilling new investigation into the roots of Christianity from the world's bestselling Christian writers.See all Product description
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The next section is a cogent, sweeping piece of work which explains the human need for something to believe in, and how 20th century dictatorships stage-managed events to fill those needs. If you ever wondered how a beast like Hitler could charm one of the most civilised peoples on Earth, here is one plausible explanation. Really worth reading, in my opinion.
The last section suggests there is a quasi-secret organisation of aristocratic families who have held "the secret" that Jesus did marry and his bloodline continues today. This society holds an intention that one day the heirs to David's line, through Jesus, will come to rule. It sounds corny in this précis form, but there is hard evidence that this society exists and is both serious and influential.
So, the thread that runs through the book is that Jesus was from the royal lineage of David (undoubtedly true) had children (most probably) and his heirs exist today. I found this argument weakening and running out of steam towards the end, however.
Conspiracy theorists will love it; academics, pedants and fundamentalists will hate it. If you are open-minded, go for it. You will definitely learn a new slant on certain aspects of history.
The main section of the book comprising the messianic legacy in the Judaeo/Christian tradition and an interesting look at the way Paul spread the gospel is extremely well done, and as the authors say speculative but I found a convincing theory. Also the alternative take on the nature of Jesus in engrossing.
The authors were obviously anxious to put their case in respect of the criticism they had attracted with their first book "Holy Blood and Holy Grail" and commence with a 38 page response, if this had been condensed into 6 pages it would have been far more effective.
The last 170 pages devoted to the totally discredited Priory of Scion that had formed part of the rationale of HBHG seems pointless as anyone can obtain all the details from the Priory website; however in 1989 the internet was in its infancy and a resource of this nature was not available. Treat as an historical anomaly and ignore.
However the core of this book is detailed, well written, engaging, and well worth investigating.
Why, then, do they not explain that the Marquis (he genuinely was one) was an actor and writer of surrealist spoofs? They mention that he was a novelist. His novel "Circuit" (unpublished, but obtainable as a microfiche through an ordinary public library request even in 1983 when I borrowed it from the Bibliotheque Nationale via Staffordshire Libraries) is a farce using some themes from the Priory story. Cherisey appears in the book himself and says "I'm a comedian!" He had admitted that he had faked the whole Priory of Sion story with Pierre Plantard when he died in 1985.
So what can we make of it? I am sure Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln knew there was no truth in any of it. The Frankenstein monster went out of control and killed Baigent and Leigh. Lincoln stepped aside soon after the Messianic Legacy, clearly knowing itv was a hoax and aware that Plantard was a nasty character who had been pro-Nazi and antisemitic in his youth.
It's all quite disturbing.
In fact this book does have new facts to compliment their previous efforts and new investigations into the society of the `Prieure de Sion' The Guardians of the Holy Grail. They also delve into the world of politics, Freemasonry and religion.
If you say it sincerely and with conviction you can make a lot of people believe a lot of things. I am not saying that the book is not factually accurate, only that it is down to the individual to put their own interpretation on to the facts that are placed before them. The thing about books like this is that if you do not read them you cannot form an opinion one way or the other.