Magi Mike's Blog

Another WordPress blog about politics and religion

Jesus Illigitimate and taken in by the Essenes

with 3 comments

What this boils down to is that the early evidence of Jesus’s birth is that he was illigitimate. It is special pleading to say this conclusion is uncharitable because Mary claimed it was a miracle. It ought not to need saying that no Christian father would accept the same excuse for his daughter’s pregnancy, so there is nothing uncharitable about it. In those days, Greeks thought it possible for human women to be impregnated by gods, and it was used as an excuse in that culture, but no traditional Jewish culture was likely to accept it. The Christians who wrote the gospels were not traditional Jews. If they were Jews at all, they were writing for people in the Hellenized world outside Palestine where divine births were acceptable. The two birth narratives were quite plainly stuck on to the bios of Christ, and no scholar considers them to be anything other than myth. It leaves the notion of illigitimacy as the only explanation for Jesus being called the son of Mary. The question then is:

clipped from
Did the people in Nazareth
know there was something unusual about Jesus’ origins, and it
disconnected him from Joseph? Yes they did, which is why they were
angry and did not think Jesus had any right to teach them. He was probably viewed as a mamzer, as Dr. Bruce Chilton has argued—an illegitimate child. And
this is precisely what James Tabor argues in his Jesus Dynasty book,
claiming he was the son of a Roman soldier named Pantera. But of course now, he has reversed himself to support the Jesus Family Tomb theory. You can’t have it both ways, and in fact neither are correct. Jesus was not the physical descendent of Joseph, was known not to be by his hometown folks. The uncharitable suggested he was illegitimate but Mary claimed his conception was a miracle. Those
are the two opposing explanations we have from the first century about
Jesus’ origins.

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Written by mikemagee

5 March, 2007 at 7:26 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Nice blog, I am enjoying reading it.

    say no to christ

    16 May, 2007 at 12:38 am

  2. I originally became aware of your blog because of your comments concerning Edwin Yamauchi, but I decided to check things out for myself before commenting.

    You claimed, among other things, that Yamauchi, because he’s a Christian, cannot be considered a scientist (he is, in fact, a historian and linguist). You further stated that he destroyed any credibility he has by stating an opinion that is not neutral.

    I would ask, do you consider yourself to be a neutral scientist? I ask because you make some very strong statements on your blog. I think I can say without equivocation that you hate Christians and Christianity with a passion and consider all who believe in Jesus to be rubes or con artists. However, in reviewing your diatribes on Christianty’s basis in ancient myths, I noted several theories that were popular in the early 20th Century that have since been refuted by Dr. Yamuachi and many of his non-Christian (since that appears to be important to you) colleagues.

    Academics do not live in ivory towers where they avoid all input but that of their particular professional specialty. I’ve read many of Dr. Yamauchi’s articles and I’ve found them scholarly and based upon solid research. He has drawn conclusions from that. That’s what scientists are supposed to do. I think, perhaps, your problem with Dr. Yamauchi is that his scholarship has refuted some of what you consider to be the evidence against Christianity and you can’t deal with the idea that you might possibly be incorrect in your hypothesis that Jesus was a myth.

    I read a lot of anger in your blog and I’m going to guess it has somewhat to do with the picture of the priest on your opening page. If someone like him hurt you, I’m sorry. He represents one of the large problems with nominal Christians like the Catholics inventing doctrines from whole cloth to justify dogmas that God would abhore. Ministers for Christ may chose, Paul wrote, to be celibate if they can control their passions, but if they cannot, they should marry.

    You assert that Christians have been handed all the easy answers and that we don’t think for ourselves. I would assert that you don’t know very many evangelical Christians personally and that you haven’t spent much time in the Bible letting it teach you rather than digging for the answers you want it to give you.

    I would ask, since I couldn’t find it anywhere on the blog — what are your qualifications? Or are you just spouting your opinion?


    26 October, 2007 at 12:56 am

  3. Aurorawatcher: You wrote that I had said Yamauchi, because he’s a Christian, cannot be considered a scientist, and that he destroyed any credibility he has by stating an opinion that is not neutral. I said these things in reply to a Yamauchi defender who had claimed he was neutral in his presentations. The first one is obviously true because Christians make their claims based on no evidence, whereas science demands that it is based on observations and testing. These two approaches are diametrically opposed and incompatible. The second is justified by Yamauchi being an evangelical. How can especially an evangelical Christian, whose raison d’etre is missionizing, present evidence concerning Christianity neutrally?

    You ask whether I am a neutral scientist. I am a neutral scientist but, having examined the evidence and come to a conclusion based on it, I have no necessity to remain neutral. Having examined evidence concerning combustion, how am I obliged to remain neutral between oxygen as an hypothesis and phlogiston? The scientist is not obliged to remain neutral once the evidence points towards a definite conlusion. I have concluded that Christian is evil based on a study of it in history, and I have presented the evidence in some detail on my webpage, AskWhy!, so that even Christians can read why I have concluded what I have. So, I am no longer neutral over Christianity, and I explain why I am not. Did you read any of it?

    You say I hate Christians and Christianity but that is too sweeping. There are many Christians that I do not hate because they take it that Christians should act like the description of Christ in the gospels. The gospels do not have to be true history to tell a story about what a righteous man did and taught concerning how righteous men should act and live. Some Christians try to do it. Many others, however, just tell others they should do it. They are self righteous authoritarians, the very opposite of the humble man whom Christians say was God Himself. The acts of these bombastic Christian bigots throughout history is smeared with blood and the soot of human flesh. These are the Christians I hate, and the beliefs they advocate are the Christianity I hate. Any set of beliefs that could be responsible for such savagery cannot be the child of any Good God. It must either be the offspring of a wicked god or the creation of the evil people calling themselves Christians that propagate it. The latter is my own view. So, some Christians are shepherds who know just what they are up to, whether on their own behalf or that of a devil, while the others are innocents who are the sheep led astray by the shepherds. Christians by and large will not consider any of this because they have been terrified into believing that any questioning of their belief will mean eternal damnation. It is the ultimate scam.

    You go on to say that Yamauchi has refuted certain arguments presented on the AskWhy! pages, apparently ones to do with ancient mythology. Typically, though, you do not engage the issues presented by these arguments. They hover as abstract allegations impressing Christian sheep no doubt, but no one else. Why are Christian apologists so coy? If you have arguments then you could be doing more good for your cause by rehearsing them, but I suspect that you are practising an old Christian habit, speaking through your hat. You say Yamauchi is scholarly, and his scholarship is based on solid research. Well then, you must be glad to rehearse it. The truth is that much of this supposed Christian scholarship is tendentious, but the lambs cannot distinguish an argument from a lie. Schoarship must be repeatable, agree with history discovered by other means than biblical research, and agreed by scholars of all persuasions. That is what scientists are supposed to do. It is not just opinion. If my problem with Yamauchi is his irrefutable arguments in favour of Christianity, then say what they are. All of your fellow Christians must be waiting agog.

    Next you put me on your sofa in your role of amateur psychologist, and prod me with you antennae. I have not been hurt by any priest or any particular Christian. Please try to appreciate this. It is simple. Christianity has the most wicked history over an extended period of any human institution. It continues today. That is why it is hateful.

    “…inventing doctrines from whole cloth to justify dogmas that God would abhore.”

    Isn’t is odd how every Christian knows the mind of God just like their own? There is more than a little insanity in people thinking they know what God thinks, is there not? Maybe, they should consider their thoughts are products of their own mind, and not God’s, but they are so arrogant they think God is whsipering into their pre-frontal lobes. The man they suppose is God incarnated recommended humility, something few modern Christians can comprehend. Yet, though God appeared on earth in person, they believe, and acted out what a holy life should be, Christians prefer to cite the writings of someone they agree is a wholly human man who freely admitted to being an opportunist, Paul.

    Why should I think I have much to learn from an ancient book? And, if I have something to learn from ancient people, why should I pick on that book, the bible, and not the rather newer Koran or the much older Egyptian Book of the Dead? Or many others, some of which were the basis of civilizations we still admire? I spent a lot of time digging around in the bible, as you put it, to find any evidence that it is what Christians claimed. all of the evidence is that it is not, so there is no reason why I, or anyone else, should believe the unsubvstantiated lies of Jews and Chriostians that it is God’s own work.

    Finally, and also typically, the website you are speaking of when you mention the Yamauchi essay has on it a potted biography of yours truly, Mike Magee, but it is obviously too hard for a Christian apologist to find.

    Mike Magee

    27 October, 2007 at 9:39 pm

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