Jesus Myth

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Jesus myth - Did He really live?

Is the Jesus myth true? Is Jesus just the fabrication of a bunch of religious zealots? Some people would like us to believe that the existence of Jesus is nothing more than a myth. To examine this question, let's start by looking at how some people have defined the word "myth."
  • a traditional story accepted as history; serves to explain the worldview of a people

  • a story, usually of teleological content, that relates not historical fact but historical "experience" of its writer or culture. It is not a chronicle of "what was or is" but a profound expression of "how things are."

  • an anonymous tale emerging from the traditional beliefs of a culture or social unit. Myths use supernatural explanations for natural phenomena. They may also explain cosmic issues like creation and death.
If Jesus did not really exist, He would fit these definitions because He would not be part of history or historical fact. Conversely, even if He really did exist, the last definition implies that who He claimed to be could still be a myth if the supernatural miracles He performed had natural explanations or He was not the Creator He claimed to be or He really didn't have power over death He claimed to have. It appears that the person who wrote the last definition tailored it to fit Jesus. He apparently believed that Jesus was not what He claimed to be and consequently was a myth.

Raising the potential mythology of Jesus is a fair question and believing in the Jesus myth is an acceptable position as long as such a conclusion is based upon a careful, unbiased examination of the evidence and not based upon what we want to believe. Many of us may want to jump to that conclusion just to avoid our responsibility toward God and to our neighbors that we would be forced to consider if Jesus is real and is who He says He is.

Any careful and objective study of the facts that surround Jesus birth, life, death, and resurrection will convince anyone that Jesus is real and that He is who He said He was. Many people have done research specifically to discredit the reality of Jesus and who He claimed to be or examined their atheistic beliefs and ended up proclaiming the truth of Jesus and the Bible. Some of these that have written their story in a book include Josh McDowell, Lee Strobel, Sir William M. Ramsey, and Randall Niles.

Without even getting into many detailed historical, archeological, scientific, and documentary facts, consider the following to see if Jesus' existence and His claim to be God are consistent with the facts:
  • Our calendar is based upon the birth of Jesus both counting backwards (BC) before His birth and forwards (AD) after His birth. Why would we base our calendar on a myth?

  • Why have Christians been persecuted throughout history if Jesus is a myth?

  • If Jesus is a myth, why do people take His name in vein?

  • Why does the mere name of Jesus instill such hatred and controversy and why is just mentioning the name of Jesus taboo if He is a myth?

  • If Jesus and His resurrection was a myth, why did all the apostles die for what they knew to be a lie?

  • How have so many lives been transformed from unsatisfying, self-destructive behaviors that are like a curse on themselves, their families, and society to a purposeful, satisfying life that is a blessing to society?

  • How do you explain the wisdom that Jesus had when answering peoples questions when they tried to trick and trap Him?

  • How do you explain how Jesus fulfilled all the messianic prophecies in the Old Testament that could not have been fulfilled by random chance?

  • Why was Jesus crucified and why were the apostles murdered if it's all a myth?

  • Many religious concepts are consistent with human thinking. Some promise to make us gods. Some promise many virgins. Some promise utopia. These concepts are consistent with human thinking. How do you explain God's plan that includes Jesus giving up His God status to become a lowly man; to live a perfect life and to die for us by our own hand and to save us from our sins. This is clearly not a concept that men would create.


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