Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


PAUL THE FIRST APOSTLE TO WRITE DENIED JESUS' GOSPEL TEACHING

There is a mismatch between what the gospels said Jesus stood for and what Paul stood for. This is a serious matter for Paul wrote and Jesus did not and Paul in a sense is more important than Jesus.

Paul followed the Septuagint version of the Hebrew Bible instead of the original. This translation had many errors and inaccuracies and was biased towards altering the Jewish faith too. If Jesus had insisted in the Sermon on the Mount that it was easier for Heaven and earth to perish than for one word to perish as the New Testament tells us meaning that we should use the Hebrew unchanged, Paul could not have done this. He would not. The widespread idea that Jesus’ teachings were known and remembered better than his life among the ordinary people is wrong when you see such an important teaching not being known in Paul’s time. Paul was an educated Jew and knew all about the failures of the Septuagint. The Hebrew Bible gave him enough ammunition for his faith without using a corrupt Bible. Paul started the tradition of Christians using the Septuagint so by the time the gospels were written it was too late to stop using it for they used it despite what they said Jesus said. They might have been honest in a lot of things but they were not honest when it came to providing religious evidence for their doctrines.

Paul said that we do not know how to pray right and even if we do, how to offer it worthily (Romans 8:26). So when we pray the Holy Spirit has to do it inside us in our place for we are too sinful to be heard. So what Christians should be doing is, “Holy Spirit I cannot pray so do it for me that God’s will alone be done.” This totally contradicts Jesus giving us the Lord’s Prayer. The Lord’s Prayer was something the gospels indicate would have been known to most Christians and yet here we are told it was not known. Matthew gives the long version and Luke gives a version with half the petitions missing which is further evidence for this. The Christians will have their answers for this but when all is said and done when there are too many awkward explanations for these things that shows the explanations are artificial and depend on a turning away from probability. The very fact that they have to be so complicated proves that the Bible cannot be God’s word for if it were it would not be so hard to defend it and the defending is a source of much discord and dissatisfaction. This problem badgers the entire breadth of Christian thought.

Paul said that the Christian life is in vain if Jesus has not risen again from the dead. This contradicts Christ's teaching in the gospels that people loving God with all their hearts is the most important commandment. The Law of Moses was the centre of Jesus' spirituality. It never mentioned a life after death at all but urged people to keep their focus on obeying God and loving him with all their being. Thus even if death were the end, the life that was spent loving God totally was all that mattered. People will see that Paul put more emphasis on agreeing with him that Jesus rose than on love.

Paul tells his followers to strive for the gift of charity and tells them that if they give their lives for God and don’t have this gift it profits nothing. He talks to them as if they haven’t the gift properly yet. He would have believed a person could seem to be heroically good and still have no charity which raises the question of how he knew that Jesus was heroically good. The stress on the gift even over knowledge about religious doctrine shows that we are to find out what Jesus was like by tying ourselves to him in love and not by looking for historical facts. Paul is indicating that there was no Jesus that a history could be created for for he wanted people to pay no attention to even trying to create a history.
 
Those who hold that Paul thought that charity was more important than faith will have to say, “Paul stressed that charity was better than any of the other gifts which means it has all the good they have in them and surpasses them. Charity then is better than knowing things about God and Jesus. Charity is what reveals them. Charity then is how Jesus reveals himself and is a better way to know him than having visions of the resurrection appearances. This shows that the early Church was not interested in tangible evidence and that the gospels in trying to provide it are heretical.”


Paul said that we must desire the higher gifts and he will show us a still more excellent way (1 Corinthians 15:31) meaning the way of love for love is the greatest gift. Paul said that there are three gifts from God that never perish and which will last forever and they are faith, hope and charity and that the greatest of these is charity (1 Corinthians 13:13). So we will believe in God, trust in God and love God and one another forever. He says that the time will come when we won’t see in shadows but see God face to face and will know him as well as he knows us. This shows that he did not believe in the Jesus of the gospels who presented himself as knowing God and making others know God. If Paul had facts about Jesus he would have considered him to be an example of Christian living but he couldn’t if the gospels were right that Jesus claimed to know God for faith and trust cannot exist if you know God. A Jesus who knows could not be much of an example. This is a big contradiction in the gospels.

Jesus made no effort to convert non-Jews and indeed told a pagan woman she was a dog. He lived as a Jew and we know the Jewish faith believed that Jews were the chosen race and salvation was only for them. This contradicts Romans 2:11 where Paul says God does not mete out special treatment. In saying that, he repudiated the idea of Jesus being a typical Jew. He repudiated the entire gospels. 
 
WORKS CONSULTED

A Concise History of the Catholic Church, Thomas Bokenkotter, Image Books, New York, 1979
Alleged Discrepancies of the Bible, John W Haley, Whitaker House, Pennsylvania, undated
Asking them Questions, Various, Oxford University Press, London, 1936
Belief and Make-Believe, GA Wells, Open Court, La Salle, Illinois, 1991
Concise Guide to Today’s Religions, Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Scripture Press, Bucks, 1983
Did Jesus Exist? GA Wells, Pemberton, London, 1988
Did Jesus Exist? John Redford, Catholic Truth Society, London, 1986
Documents of the Christian Church, edited by Henry Bettenson, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1979
Early Christian Writings, Maxwell Staniforth Editor, Penguin, London, 1988  
Encyclopaedia of Heresies and Heretics, Leonard George, Robson Books, London, 1995
Encyclopaedia of Unbelief, Volume 1, Ed Gordon Stein, (Ed) Prometheus Books, New York, 1985
Evidence that Demands a Verdict, Vol 1, Josh McDowell, Alpha, Scripture Press Foundation, Bucks, 1995
Handbook to the Controversy With Rome, Volume 1, Karl Von Hase, The Religious Tract Society, London, 1906
Hard Sayings, FF Bruce, Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1983
He Walked Among Us, Josh McDowell and Bill Wilson, Alpha Cumbria, 2000
In Defence of the Faith, Dave Hunt, Harvest House, Eugene, Oregon, 1996
Introduction to the New Testament, Roderick A F MacKenzie, SJ, Liturgical Press, Minnesota, 1965
Jesus, AN Wilson, Flamingo, London, 1993
Jesus and the Goddess, The Secret Teachings of the Original Christians, Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy, Thorsons, London, 2001
Jesus – God the Son or Son of God? Fred Pearce Christadelphian Publishing Office, Birmingham, undated
Jesus – One Hundred Years Before Christ, Professor Alvar Ellegard Century, London, 1999
Jesus and the Four Gospels, John Drane, Lion, Herts, 1984
Jesus Hypotheses, V Messori, St Paul Publications, Slough, 1977
Jesus Lived in India by Holger Kersten, Element, Dorset, 1994
Jesus, Qumran and the Vatican, Otto Betz and Rainer Riesner, SCM Press Ltd, London, 1994
Jesus the Evidence, Ian Wilson, Pan, London, 1985
Jesus the Magician, Morton Smith, Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1978
Jesus under Fire, Edited by Michael F Wilkins and JP Moreland, Zondervan Publishing House, Michigan, 1995
Lectures and Replies, Thomas Carr, Archbishop of Melbourne, Melbourne, 1907
Let’s Weigh the Evidence, Barry Burton, Chick Publications, Chino, CA, 1983
Miracles in Dispute, Ernst and Marie-Luise Keller, SCM Press Ltd, London, 1969
Nag Hammadi Library, Ed James M Robinson HarperCollins New York 1990
On the True Doctrine, Celsus, Translated by R Joseph Hoffmann, Oxford University Press, Oxford 1987
Putting Away Childish Things, Uta Ranke-Heinemann, HarperCollins, San Francisco, 1994
Runaway World, Michael Green, IVP, London, 1974
St Paul versus St Peter, A Tale of Two Missions, Michael Goulder, Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville, Kentucky, 1994
St Peter and Rome, JBS, Irish Church Missions, Dublin, undated
Saint Saul, Donald Harman Akenson, Oxford University Press, New York, 2000
The Bible Fact or Fantasy, John Drane, Lion, Oxford, 1989
The Bible Unearthed, Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman, Touchstone Books, New York, 2002.
The Call to Heresy, Robert Van Weyer, Lamp Books, London, 1989
The Case For Christ, Lee Strobel, HarperCollins and Zondervan, Michigan, 1998
The Case for Jesus the Messiah, John Ankerberg Harvest House, Eugene, Oregon, 1989
The Early Church, Henry Chadwick, Pelican, Middlesex, 1967
The Encyclopedia of Heresies and Heretics, Leonard George, Robson Books, London, 1995
The First Christian, Karen Armstrong, Pan, London, 1983
The Gnostic Gospels, Elaine Pagels, Penguin, London, 1990
The Gnostic Paul, Elaine Pagels, Fortress Press, Philadelphia, 1975
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The House of the Messiah, Ahmed Osman, Grafton, London, 1993
The Jesus Event and Our Response, Martin R Tripole SJ, Alba House, New York, 1980
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The Jesus Mysteries, Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy, Thorsons, London, 1999
The MythMaker, St Paul and the Invention of Christianity, Hyam Maccoby, Weidenfeld and Nicholson, London, 1986
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The Unauthorised Version, Robin Lane Fox, Penguin, Middlesex, 1992
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Theodore Parker’s Discourses, Theodore Parker, Longmans, Green, Reader and Dyer, London, 1876
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The WWW

Who is GA Wells? Rev Dr Gregory S. Neal
www.errantskeptics.org/G_A_Wells.htm

The Silent Jesus
www.askwhy.co.uk/awcnotes/cn4/0325SilentJesus.html#Justin

Apollonius the Nazarene, The Historical Apollonius versus the Historical Jesus
www.apollonius.net/bernard1e.html

Why Did the Apostles Die? Dave Matson,
 www.infidels.org/library/magazines/tsr/1997/4Why97.html
 
The “Historical” Jesus by Acharya S
www.truthbeknown.com/historicaljc.htm

How Did the Apostles Die?
www.infidels.org/library/magazines/tsr/1997/4/4front97.html

History’s Troubling Silence About Jesus, Lee Salisbury
www.secweb.org/asset.asp?AssetID=102

Steven Carr discusses the Christian and apostolic martyrs
www.bowness.demon.co.uk/martyrs.htm  
www.bowness.demon.co.uk/martyrs2.htm

Challenging the Verdict
A Cross-Examination of Lee Strobel’s The Case for Christ
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/CTVExcerptsOne.htm
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/CTVExcerptsTwo.htm
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/CTVExcerptsThree.htm#Twelve

The Martyrdoms of Peter and Paul, Peter Kirby
http://home.earthlink.net/~kirby/

The Martyrdoms: A Response, Peter Kirby
www.bowness.demon.co.uk/martyrs3.htm

A Sacrifice in Heaven,
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/supp09.htm

The Evolution of Jesus of Nazareth
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/partthre.htm

The Jesus of History, a Reply to Josh McDowell by Gordon Stein
 www.infidels.org/library/modern/gordon_stein/Jesus.html

Josh McDowell’s Evidence for Jesus – Is It Reliable?, by Jeffrey J Lowder www.infidels.org/library/modern/jeff_lowder/jury/chap5.html

A Reply to JP Holding’s “Shattering” of My Views on Jesus
www.infidels.org/secular_web/new/2000/march.html

Robert M Price, Christ a Fiction
www.infidels.org/library/modern/robert_price/fiction.html

Earliest Christianity G A Wells
www.infidels.org/library/modern/g_a_wells/earliest.html

The Second Century Apologists
http://human.st/jesuspuzzle/century.htm

Existence of Jesus Controversy, Rae West
www.homeusers.prestel.co.uk/littleton/gm1_jesu.htm

Why I Don’t Buy the Resurrection Story by Richard Carrier
www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/resurrection/index.shtml

Jesus Conference,
www.st-and.ac.uk/~www_sd/jconf_hall.html
 
Jesus Conference,
www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~www_sd/jconf_stuckenbruck.html
 
The Testament of Levi Concerning the Priesthood and Arrogance
www.ccel.org/fathers2/ANF-08/anf08-07.htm#P378_53868.
  
Sherlock Holmes Style Search for the Historical Jesus
www.fortunecity.com/greenfield/bp/890/history.html
 
The Ascension of Isaiah
www.earth-history.com/sacred-ascension-Isaiah.htm

Apollonius of Tyana: The Monkey of Christ? The Church Patriarchs, Robertino Solarion www.apollonius.net/patriarchs.html

What About the Discovery of Q? Brad Bromling
www.ApologeticsPress.org
 
Wells without Water, Psychological Buffoonry from the Master of the Christ-Myth, James Patrick Holding
www.tektonics.org/JPH_WW.html

Critique: Scott Bidstrp [sic] on The Case for Christ by James Patrick Holding
www.tektonics.org/bidstrup02.html

GA Wells Replies to Criticism of his Books on Jesus
www.infidels.org/library/modern/g_a_wells/errant.html

The Ossuary Scam: A Critical Analysis of the “James” Ossuary
http://www.atrueword.com/index.php/article/articleprint/15/-1/1/

The Origins of Christianity and the Quest for the Historical Jesus, Acharya S
www.truthbeknown.com/origins.htm

BIBLE VERSION USED
 
The Amplified Bible
The King James Version