15. More Pious Fraud
Another "pious fraud" technique used when Jesus' biography was being compiled was to attribute to him, miracles and anecdotes recorded in the Hebrew Bible. The following examples illustrate this ruse:
The Hebrew Bible relates that before she gave birth to Samuel, Hannah had been childless. And to show her gratitude to G-d for blessing her with a son, "...she brought him to the House of the L-rd,..." "...along with three bullocks,..." to be sacrificed there1 Samuel 1:2, 24 .
Mary was also said to have been without children prior to the birth of Jesus, and that after she bore him, "...they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the L-rd...." "and to offer a sacrificeMatthew 1;18, Luke 2:22,24 ...."
In both narratives, the families were greeted at the Temple by holy people. Eli the High Priest received Samuel, and "...Simeon, a man righteous and devout,..."> together with a "prophetess," were on hand to sing the praises of Jesus. Interestingly, her name is given as Anna which in Hebrew is Hannah!1 Samuel 1:25, Luke 2:25,36
Even the description of Jesus' spiritual progress is curiously similar to Samuel's:
"Now the boy Samuel continued to grow in stature, and in favor with the L-rd and with men1 Samuel 2:26 ."
"And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with G-d and man."Luke 2:52
John the Baptist, supposedly Jesus' cousin, is represented in the New Testament as being a reincarnation of Elijah the prophetMatthew 11:14 .
The account of John's birth was derived from the chronicles of Samson:
Both their mothers are described as being barren, and childless when an angel appears announcing the forthcoming birth of an illustrious sonJudges 13:2,3 Luke 1:7,13 .
Samson's mother was warned that she must "...drink no wine or strong drink,..." Similarly, the angel said that John "...shall drink no wine or strong drinkJudges 13:4, Luke 1:15,...."
The reason for this abstention in both instances were identical:
"...The child [Samson] shall be a Nazirite to G-d from the womb...." "...he [John] shall be filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother's wombJudges 13:7, Luke 1:15."
The closing statements of both narratives are also strikingly similar:
"...and the child [Samson] grew, and the L-rd blessed himJudges 13:24."
"And the child [John] grew, and became strong in the spiritLuke 1:80 ,...."
The feasibility that Jesus brought a dead man back to life is dramatically reduced when one compares the details of this report with a miracle performed by Elijah the prophet:
Both episodes begin with the words:
"As he drew near to the gate of the city, behold,.... They, then both continue to relate that a widow's son had died, and subsequently was resurrected, one by Elijah, and one by Jesus.
Each, in turn, then "...gave him to his mother1 Kings 17:10=23, Luke 7:12-15 ."
Elisha the prophet fed a large group of people with a small quantity of food consisting of first fruits, twenty loaves of barley, and fresh ears of grain. His disciples at first expressed disbelief that this would suffice for so many people. However, not only was it enough, but food was left over.
Jesus is said to have fed a large group of people with a small quantity of food consisting of seven loaves of bread and a few small fish. His disciples at first expressed disbelief that this would suffice for so many people. However, it is claimed that not only was it enough, but food was left over2 Kings 4:42-44, Matthew 15:32-37 .
The Hebrew Bible informs us that the prophet Elijah abstained from all food and drink in the wilderness for a forty day period. The writers of Jesus' biography knew that this feat clearly proved Elijah's unique holiness. Therefore, with a few strokes of their pens, billions of people during the past two thousand years were falsely misled into believing that Jesus also fasted for forty days in the wilderness!Luke 4:2, 1 Kings 19:4,8
The writings of Josephus, published prior to 100 C.E. were also a source from which the compilers of the New Testament freely drew upon.
From his autobiography, we read:
"When I was fourteen years old, I was commended by everyone for the love I had for learning. Because of this, the high priests, and learned men of the city [Jerusalem] came often to me to enquire about the accurate understanding of points of the LawLife section 2 ."
The New Testament is mysteriously silent about what transpired during the first thirty years of Jesus' life. Therefore, the insertion of a similar passage insinuating that he was a recognized child prodigy ideally filled this void. Thus, we read:
"When he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom [to Jerusalem],... After three days they found him in the Temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions, and all who heard him were amazed at his understanding, and his answersLuke 2:42-47 ."
Josephus recounts that during the Roman war against Jerusalem when escape by a Jew was nearly impossible, the following scheme was put into effect:
"And now Simon, thinking he might be able to scare and delude the Romans, put on a white robe,...and appeared out of the ground.... Those who saw him were greatly horrified, and remained motionlessWars book 7,chapter 2 ...."
To add dramatic effect to the "resurrection" story, elements from Simon's adventure were blended into it:
"...an angel of the L-rd descended from heaven, and rolled back the stone,....his clothing was white as snow. And for the fear of him, the guards trembled, and became like dead menMatthew 28:2-4 ."
After Josephus betrayed his people, and deserted to the Roman side, he tells the following:
"...I saw many captives crucified; and I remembered three of them as my former acquaintances. ...I went to Titus, and told him of them. He immediately commanded them to be taken down....Two of them died under the physician's hands, while the third recoveredLife section 75 ."
"And with [Jesus] they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left.... Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council,...went to Pilate, and asked for the body of JesusMark 15:27,43 ."
It is certainly peculiar that on separate occasions two prominent individuals both viewed a set of three men being crucified. Both then went to a Roman official to plea that his friend(s) might be taken down. After their request was granted, in each case, two of the crucified men died, and one survived.
In the New Testament's account, the two robbers died, and Jesus survived by means of "resurrection."
In addition to this, the very name Joseph of Arimathea which in the original Greek of Mark is Joseph apo Arimathias was taken from the genealogy of Josephus. There, he informs us that his grandfather Joseph begot Matthias. The Greek text of which is Josepou Matthias!Life section