Documentary filmmaker Brian Flemming examines the Bible and discusses the history of early Christianity, raising doubts as to whether the Ne...更多>
[about the Apostle Paul and the gap between Christ's death in circa 33 A.D. and the appearance of the Gospel of Mark, which was written in or after 70 A.D] Narrator:
Paul wrote lots of letters about Christianity. In fact, he wrote eighty thousand words about the Christian religion. These documents represent almost all we have of the history of Christianity during this decades-long gap. And here's the interesting thing. If Jesus was a human who had recently lived, nobody told Paul. Paul never heard of Mary, Joseph, Bethlehem, Herod, John the Baptist. He never heard about any of these miracles. He never quotes anything that Jesus is supposed to have said. He never mentions Jesus having a ministry of any kind at all. He doesn't know about any entrance into Jerusalem, he never mentions Pontius Pilate or a Jewish mob or any trials at all. Paul doesn't know any of what we would call the story of Jesus, except for these last three events. And even these, Paul never places on Earth. Just like the other savior gods of the time, Paul's Christ Jesus died, rose, and ascended all in a mythical realm. Paul doesn't believe that Jesus was ever a human being. He's not even aware of the idea. And he's the link between the time-frame given for the life of Jesus and the appearance of the first Gospel account of that life.
Narrator: This is why you don't hear many Christian leaders talking about the early days of Christianity. Because once you assemble the facts, the story is that Jesus lived, everyone forgot, and then they remembered. But it gets even shakier than that. [first lines] Narrator: The Earth revolves around the Sun. But it wasn't always that way. The Sun used to revolve around the Earth. It was like that for hundreds of years, until it was discovered to be otherwise, and even for a few hundred years after that. But, ultimately, after much kicking and screaming, the Earth did, in fact, begin to revolve around the Sun. Christianity was wrong about the solar system. What if it's wrong about something else, too? This movie's about what happened when I went looking for Jesus. [after showing brief interviews of devout, smiling Christians] Narrator: Look at how happy Christians are when they're talking about Jesus. How come I'm not this happy? I wanna be this happy. Of course, those aren't the only faces of Christianity. [Shows photographs of a wild-eyed Charles Manson, a smirking Pat Robertson, the devout Christian Dena Schlosser who cut off her baby's arms for God, authors Reverend Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins, and the burning Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas] Narrator: So I guess it's kind of a mixed bag. Narrator: Meanwhile, back at the manger, the Virgin Mary gave birth without complications. Narrator: You ever read that news story about the guy who was found dead and they couldn't figure out how he died, but when they did the autopsy, they found a can of Spam shoved down his throat? Turns out he was a spammer, and that's why he got killed. People like the moral of that story. Which is why I made it up. And when I first posted it on my weblog, I labeled it as fiction. Robert M. Price: There are other similar savior figures in the same neighborhood at the same time in history: Mithras, Attis, Adonis, Osiris, Tammuz, and so forth, uh, and uh, nobody thinks these characters are anything but mythical. And their stories are so similar, most of them, in fact, having some kind of resurrection or another, um, sometimes even with celebrations after three days and so forth, that it just seems like special pleading to, uh, say, "Oh, well, in this one case, it really happened." The early church fathers understood that this was a problem, because they were already getting the same objections from pagans. They said, "What you say about Jesus, we've been saying about, you know, Dionysus and Hercules all the time, and what's the big deal?" And they didn't believe in them either, any more. And so the Christian apologists, the defenders of the faith, would say, "Well, yeah, but *this* one is true. Satan counterfeited it in advance 'cause he knew this day would come." Boy, I tell you, that tells you two things right there: That even *they* didn't deny that these other Jesus-like characters were before Jesus, or they never would have resorted to something like that. Satan knew it was going to happen and counterfeited it in advance? Narrator: [to the film viewers] In case you're wondering: Uh, yes, this remains the explanation to this day. Narrator:
For thousands of years, humanity has been obsessed with blood sacrifice. Is it an accident that the story of the crucifixion of Jesus gave Christians a suffering hero, whose flesh they could eat and whose blood they could drink? Of course, Christians today aren't obsessed with blood sacrifice any more.