Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

The Origins Of Christianity: A Radical Hypothesis

If Jesus died c. AD. 30 how come his name doesn't start appearing in the archaeological record until 100 years later?

There were two Jewish revolts during the reign of Hadrian. Evidence for Jesus  (mostly in the form of fragments of gospels) starts appearing at just this time.

It wasn't that easy to get published in the Roman world. If lots of manuscripts of a given text are in circulation it argues official connivance or even sponsorship.

Christianity is a radically Hellenized version of Judaism- outward looking and friendly to the Empire. Jesus is a God-man on the Hellenic model- like Hercules, Dionysus, Alexander, Mithras, Antinous, etc. The early Christian texts show the Romans in a favourable light  and demonize the Jewish authorities. ("Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites."). 

All this fits with Christianity being a creation of the Hadrianic period- a state-sponsored religion designed to draw adherents away from Judaism.   Its leading personalities- Jesus, the Apostles, Paul- were all "invented" at this time- and placed (conveniently beyond the reach of living memory) in the golden age of the early Empire. The gospels and other early Christian writings are essentially  "black propaganda" aimed against the Jewish rebels and their separatist ideology 
This is the barest outline of the hypothesis. The detailed evidence and arguments are here.
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