Originally Posted by Master50
Some of my favourite contradictions of the followers of Jesus.
The story about the woman who was accused of Adultery was added to the early bibles around 350 ad. Likely by monks who thought it was a good story.
the 4 main books about Jesus were written between 30 and 70 years after jesus died and they all tell similar stories but it is hard to believe the authors were always at the same event. The earliest telling of the crucifixion portrays a very quiet and suffering Jesus who's only words are why have thou forsaken me. The version written some 30 to 40 years later has Jesus forgiving his punishers and speaking lucidly to the others on the cross with him. Instead of amalgamating the 4 books read them side by side and see what a different story they tell. From a quite suffering victim to a forgiving and powerful man in control of his destiny. At least they read like that to me.
For the most part the earliest followers of Jesus were Jews and for a very long time Gentiles were not welcome to every sect of jewish "christians". I don't think Christianity was exclusively non Jewish until Constantine. He used Christianity as a unifying religion for Rome and started to demonize the Jews with the non Jewish Jesus.
Jesus was not born in bethlehem and there was no census to force his parents to go there. That was created to support prophesy of a saviour.
Jesus spoke aramaic and maybe Hebrew yet some of the text translations from Greek don't mean the same thing if they were originally said in Aramaic or hebrew.
Even how he was portrayed changed over time. He preached the apocalypse was about to come and to read some of the stories like he expected to be alive for it. Since the end didn't actually come while he was alive the stories became more allegorical and started to portray him a god or part of god.
Read some Bart Erhman (sp). He is a biblical historian that has written a lot of books on the new testament and stories of Jesus. He teaches at Chapel hill NC.
Now the thread is do you believe in god? Can't say I do but at the moment no one is shooting at me right now either. I am definitely an atheist as it applies to any of man's organized religions.
The interesting thing about the highlighted bit is that there were serious discussions among Jews as to whether or not Jesus teachings were at all meant for the pagans. Peter didn't think so.
Saul, later St. Paul, began the missionary work among the gentile peoples. At a certain point they, the pagans, transformed the historical figure of the Jew, Jesus, into the divine Chritos (Greek, a gentile language, for Savior) or Christ. They provided Christ with a hellenized and classical imagery and they invented Christianity, as such, as a distinct religion from Judaism. Not having themselves been Jews, they weren't interesting in becoming jewish, but something else, while St. Paul realized that making the gentile converts abide by the strict dietary rules of the Jews was not doable and so pointless.
In other words Christianity emerged as such and got its autonomous identity by the pagans in the late antique world, which is the one the orthodox Christians of the Latin/Roman Catholic and Greek churches (the oldest surviving forms of the religion, of which there were many variants in antiquity - Arian, Donatist, Monophysite, Gnostic, etc.) still know it as today. They, the pagans, were the ones who also fixed its religious calendar: with dates like Dec. 25 being a recycled sun god birthday, now for the Christos, etc. Constantine himself, the Roman emporer who first legalized the sect, was initially devoted more to Sol Invictus (another pagan sun god whose birthday was Dec. 25) and his Persian counterpart Mithras, than the Christ, even after his “vision.” And he seems to have considered the worship of Christ in terms of Babalonian/oriental sun god worship, to the extent that some scholars believe that had Constantine wholeheartedly embraced say Mithraism, we'd all be worshiping Mithras today instead Christ in a manner of speaking.
The process, at least in the arts and culture, began before Constantine though: let us say about a century before in the Ancient Roman World.