In a new twist on the “Christ Myth Theory,” the idea that Jesus never existed, an American scholar says that the story at the basis of the worldwide Christian religion was created as propaganda by the Roman government sometime in the First Century A.D.
Advocates of the theory that Jesus never existed, an idea which originated in the late 18th Century, usually hold that the gospel stories were invented by early Christians and inspired by mythology that had existed for millennia in other Middle Eastern and Near Eastern cultures.
Joseph Atwill, author of the 2005 book Caesar's Messiah: The Roman Conspiracy to Invent Jesus, plans to give a lecture in London Oct. 19 detailing his theory that “ancient confessions recently uncovered” prove that the story of Jesus was fabricated by “Roman aristocrats” as form of psychological warfare.
The Romans, he says, needed to placate a rebellious Jewish population in ancient Palestine which was then under Roman control.
"Jewish sects in Palestine at the time, who were waiting for a prophesied warrior Messiah, were a constant source of violent insurrection during the first century," Atwill (pictured) explains. "When the Romans had exhausted conventional means of quashing rebellion, they switched to psychological warfare.”
The idea, according to Atwill, was to give the unsettled Jewish people of that era a “messiah of peace,” who teaches them to “turn the other cheek” rather than rise up in violent revolution against the Roman occupiers.
Atwill says his discovery came to him from a close reading of Wars of the Jews by the First Century historian Josephus — a text that scholars have dissected in fine detail for centuries.
But Atwill says that he was able to spot clues to the truth that everyone else throughout history missed because many of those “confessions” as he calls them, were “conceptual or poetic, so they aren't all immediately obvious.”
Tickets to Atwill’s talk, to be held at Conway Hall in London’s Red Lion Square, go for £25, or about 40 bucks.
SOURCES: PR Web, Covert Messiah, Wikipedia