Revelations of the Antichrist
by J. P. Mendum
Revelations of the Antichrist
by J. P. Mendum
...it is doubtful whether the term Christian was known till near the middle of the second century - J. P. Mendum
The Pauline Epistles were written, as all critics agree, many years after the disciples were said to have been called Christians at Antioch, and yet Paul never uses the word, though he was a preacher at Antioch as late as seventeen years after his conversion.
The Original Christians
That the disciples were first called Christians at Anti- och, a heathen city, about AD 43, rests upon the sole authority of the Book of Acts, which Dr. Davidson concedes was written as late as AD 125; but there is no positive evidence of its existence prior to the year 190. It is therefore of no value to prove the use of the word Christian before the middle of the second century.
...the same may be said of 1 Peter, the only other Book of the New Testament in which the word Christian is found;
The Sibylline oracles, which existed long before the Christian era, were destroyed during the burning of Rome, AD 66, but like some of the Old Testament books, which were lost or destroyed during the Babylonian captivity, and afterwards re- written from memory or tradition, so a new collection of the Sibylline books was made after the fire in Rome. These books are quoted by the early Christian Fathers as the Word of God, and so great was their estimation and use in the Church of the 2nd and 3rd centuries, that Christians were nicknamed Sibyllists.
The term Chrestos (Christ) was familiar and precious to both heathen and Hebrew devotees centuries before the alleged nativity at Bethlehem.
...the Gospel fictions were made to conform to the Sibylline prophecies, just as they are claimed to accord with pretended Jewish ones.
Things Not Seen
It is a pretty safe logical deduction that where there is smoke there must be fire ; but if the smoke turns out to be dust, the fire is a phantasm. For fifteen centuries a cloud of theological dust has enveloped Christendom, and has been mistaken for the smoke of an imaginary fire, supposed to have been kindled in Judea 1850 years ago by the incarnate Son of God. In the darkness of this cloud the grand central object of Christian sight has been an invisible Christ, apparent only to the eye of faith;' for faith, you know, is "the evidence of things not seen."
All the rest of the Christian forgeries have been exposed and swept away, leaving the Gospel fabric with- out a single historic support.
Book of Acts (Luke)
...so is almost everything in the book of Acts unhistorical - so much so that no one can point out what is fact....The story was written, probably, about a hundred years after Paul's death. Rabbi Wise, in his "Origin of Christianity," has shown that the writer was ignorant of the geography of Palestine, and of the language, laws, and customs of the Jews; and the "undersigned coincidences" between the book of Acts and the Pauline Epistles which Paley so clearly discerned, all vanish under the scrutiny of more recent Christian criticism.
From the first dramatic scene of the ascension of Jesus to the last matter-of-fact announcement that Paul dwelt two whole years at Rome in his own hired house, the book is a tissue of falsehoods.
Existence of Jesus?
The New Testament Epistles and Apocalypse, most of which were written before the end of the 1st century, contain no hint of the existence of an earthly child Jesus.
Where now is to be found in the historical records of the first century a single scrap to prove the existence of such a person as Jesus Christ, or even of a set of men that could be accounted as his personal disciples?
Some of the main points of evidence against the existence of Jesus are as follows:
1. The absolute silence of contemporaneous history.
2. The forgery of facts to prove his existence by early Christian writers ; such as the celebrated passage in Josephus, which was interpolated between the time of Origen, AD 230, and that of Eusebius, AD 325.
3. The complete destruction of the antichristian writings, and preservation of only the Christian version of the arguments against Christianity.
4. The arguments of the Christian Fathers in favor of a historical Christ were almost entirely based on fanciful interpretations of fragmentary passages from the Hebrew prophets; and in the few instances where appeals were made to history, it is impossible to verify that history, or even to find the record.
5. The proof adduced by Paul and other writers of the New Testament epistles is of a like character, to wit, an appeal to prior Scriptures to prove the advent and death of Christ.
6. It is by no means certain what kind of a Christ Paul and the other epistolary writers meant - whether a real (or pretended) person who existed in their time, or one who lived long before, or a mythical, ideal being.
That a Jesus may have existed in those days is quite probable, for there was no commoner name among the Jews; but to identify the Gospel Jesus with any one of the numerous historical characters of that name is impossible. In the Septuagint Joshua is always rendered Jesus.
The followers of Jesus Christ would most certainly have been called after one or the other of his two names. But it seems that for more than a hundred years they accepted neither.
The term Christian is first used by Suetonius about AD 110, but the original word was probably Chrestian. Its next occurrence is in the letter of Adrian, between AD 117 and 138, and there, also, it was probably Chrestian. Then comes Justin, between AD 147 and 161, who at first most certainly, if not always, wrote the word Chrestian. After that in the course of fifty years it became popular, the term Chrestian meanwhile giving way to the more appropriate one of Christian.
Truth Will Out
Those initiated into the sacred mysteries knew the Gospel stories were false, but considered it necessary necessary to keep up the imposition for the purposes of propaganda. But while this transition of faith was going on, some of the more conscientious teachers began to tell the people that the Jesus Christ they were worshiping was not a historical personage. This was regarded by the conservative priests as a dangerous disclosure, and so John denounces the innovators as liars and Anti-Christs, knowing that he himself and his fellow priests were the pious liars and that the Anti-Christs were telling the truth…Error prevailed, and the mythical Christ became the historical Jesus
That Paul was a historical character has never yet been questioned by any competent critic.
...It further appears that the traces of a historical Jesus in Paul's writings are very meager and uncertain.
He was evidently tinctured with Gnosticism, which allegorized the scriptures and believed in an ideal Jesus Christ.
Many Jesuses are mentioned by him and their acts recorded, but no Jesus Christ.
The celebrated passage in Josephus concerning Christ being set aside as an acknowledged forgery, what remains of external evidence as to his existence? Absolutely nothing.
Justin Martyr Omission
The silence of so early a writer as Justin in regard to the Apostles is remarkable. If Peter had figured so prominently in Apostolic times, and had founded a church at Rome, he certainly deserved more notice from Justin.
The silence of so early a writer as Justin in regard to the Apostles is remarkable.
To Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, on the coast of Pales- tine, from AD 315 to 340, we are indebted for nearly all we know of church history prior to his time.
His work itself is proof enough that he not only selected what was advantageous and rejected what was otherwise in those "partial [and fabulous] narratives," but that he did not scruple to support Christianity by falsehood and forgery. Christian writers have not hesitated to brand him as a great falsifier, a wily sycophant, a consummate hypocrite, and a time-serving persecutor.
Athenagoras, the Athenian Philosopher and Christian, was the most elegant and perhaps the ablest of the early Fathers. We have about 80 pages of his works, written about AD 177. He nowhere mentions Christ or any event of his life. Nor does he mention or quote from any Gospel, but he puts into the mouth of the "Logos" certain sayings, some of which resemble passages in our Gospels and others do not. No wonder that neither Eusebius nor Jerome mentions him. He probably did not believe in a historical Jesus.
...coming down to Ireneus, the first publisher of the four Gospels, (a. d. 190,) we find in his writings an unequivocal affirmation that Jesus Christ, instead of being a youth of 30, was an old man, past 50, at least, when he died. This is equivalent to admitting that the story of the crucifixion under Pontius Pilate is a fiction.
A little sum in arithmetic would have revealed to Ireneus how fatal his allegations were to the truth of the Gospel story. If Jesus was about 30 years old in the 15th year of Tiberius (AD 29) as stated by Luke, and if he lived to be 50 or upwards, then of course his death must have been as late as AD 49, which would be the 9th year of Claudius, or 12 years after the death of Tiberius and the dismissal of governor Pilate.
...both Epistles of Peter are manifest forgeries.
Upon the tradition that Peter was Bishop at Rome, and suffered martyrdom about the year 66, the Roman Church asserts its supremacy. His martyrdom under Nero of course precludes his authorship of even the first Epistle, unless Dr. Davidson and other equally competent Christian critics are mistaken as to its earliest assignable date.
The next thing done to transform Cephas into Peter was to tamper with Paul's Epistles. Eight times, as we have pointed out, the name Cephas occurs in Paul's writings. But not until the recent discovery or publication of the earliest manuscripts of the New Testament, was it known that the later Fathers, or priestly scribes, had erased Cephas three times (in Gal 1:18 & 2:11-14) and inserted Peter.
Stoning to death and then hanging on a tree was the Jewish mode of execution; crucifixion the Roman mode.
The story of the Resurrection of Christ is a pitiful muddle. Each of the four Evangelists is at loggerheads with the rest, and all of them with Paul, the earliest writer.
According to Matthew, Jesus met two Marys just after leaving the sepulcher, and told them to tell his brethren to go and meet him in Galilee ; and no meeting of Jesus and his disciples is mentioned except in fulfillment of this appointment, in a mountain, 60 or 80 miles distant. Not only does Matthew omit the memorable meeting on the evening of the resurrection day, as recorded by Luke and John, but he plainly implies that there was no such meeting.
According to Mark, Jesus did not meet the two women, but they received their instruction to tell the disciples to go and meet him in Galilee from a young man in a long white garment, who was sitting inside the sepulcher. This is all Mark says; but some priest after the fourth century appends to the narrative the story of the appearance of Jesus, first to Mary Magdalene, next to two disciples who were strolling into the country, and lastly to the eleven as they sat at meat. This priestly appendix was of course borrowed from Luke, or some other gospel storyteller later than Mark. It is wanting in the oldest manuscripts, and is rejected by orthodox scholars. The ascension of Christ, therefore, is left to rest solely upon the testimony of the writer of the third Gospel.
According to Luke, there was no appearance of Jesus to Mary or any other woman.
According to John, Jesus first appeared to Mary Magdalene, and to no one else until evening.
John sets forth a second meeting of the disciples, apparently for the purpose of convincing the doubting Thomas - a gathering which the other Evangelists know nothing about - and still a third meeting away olf in Galilee at some subsequent but indefinite time. And then observe that only Luke of the four Evangelists thinks it important to tell us what became of the risen Jesus. Matthew and Mark leave him in Galilee, Luke sends him up into Heaven, and John leaves him at Lake Tiberias.
Jesus of Nazareth and Jesus the Nazarene are here used indiscriminately, just as they are confounded in the Gospels. "Nazarene" means a member of the family of David. There was a sect of the Essenes called Nazarenes, and in most instances where we read in the Gospels and Acts "Jesus of Nazareth," it should have been translated "Jesus the Nazarene." In Matt, 2:23, the infant Jesus is brought to Nazareth in order to fulfill a prophecy that he should "be called a Nazarene." The prophecy referred to (Judges 13:5) is about Samson the Nazarite, not Nazarene. The Nazarites were an ancient order of long-haired devotees. The Nazarenes were a modern sect, of whom Paul was said to be a ringleader (Acts 24:5). The Gospel writers or interpolaters, not being Jews, may not have known the difference between a Nazarite, a Nazarene, and a citizen of Nazareth; or if they did, they did not care to make the distinction.
Peter, James and John are the prominent Apostles of the Gospel; the rest of the twelve are of little or no ac- count - mostly figure-heads to fill up the sacred number.
At twelve years of age the child Horus makes his transformation into the adult in his baptism or other kindred mysteries. Horus as the man of thirty years is initiated in the final mystery of the resurrection - Albert Churchward