The beliefs that many of us carry about Jesus of Nazareth and the Holy Bible express themselves in a wide spetrum of  unfounded conclusions and misreadings of history and the Bible itself.  As we celebrate the birth of Jesus, we might want to reflect on our own "interpretations" ...

Jesus was born sometime between 2 B.C. and 4 B.C. and He was crucified around 30 A.D.

The exact birthdate of Jesus is pure speculation.  Some conjecture has been made about the position of special "stars" in the sky, refering to the Magi and their trek to see Him and bring gifts.  But we do not know the exact birthdate, and the one we celebrate [Dec. 25] was used to enjoin a popular pagan holiday and attach the birthdate to it.

The first written of the Four Gospels was not Matthew, though it appears in the Bible first.  The first Gospel written was Mark.  Mark was written down from an attempt to bring together some of the oral history that was "remembered" by early Christians.  There are no "Christian" accounts written down that we have now before 50-100 years after His crucifixion.  Mark attempted to pull together some of the stories that were being circulated among the faithful.  Mark does not have some of the wider conclusions drawn in Matthew and Luke.  

The Book of Matthew was written to Jews of the day.  That is a reason the entire lineage of Jesus is mentioned in Matthew back to the early founding of Judaism.  Matthew also includes some "specifics" that are not found in Mark.

The "synoptic Gospels" [Matthew, Mark, Luke] use some of the same oral reference material.

The Gospel of John is different and carries a greater mixture of mystical material.  Written later.

Jesus spoke in Aramaic, but His comments are often recorded in Koine Greek, a common language found around the Mediterranean.

None of the Holy Bible was originally written in Latin...none.

The early followers of Jesus considered themselves Jews.  After the sacking of the Temple by the Romans, Judaism had splintered.  Early Christians considered themselves a branch of remaining Judaism until Rabbinical Judaism more or less took control of that faith and took steps to squelch other splinters [non-Rabbinicals, Essenes, and follwers of Jesus].  The term "Christian" came later and was found in early, small, mission churches north and northwest of Jerusalem [Asia Minor, Greece, etc.].

Jesus of Nazareth and the early Christian church is an interesting study.  Whether you are a Christian or not, the dominant belief system that surrounds us should be better studied than it is.  Inform yourself about this early history and the special importance of the son of a carpenter who impacted world history for over 2,000 years.  Some of the most destructive, cynical, and devious movements in history have used misreadings of Jesus and the Bible to further their political objectives.  Be careful!

Page Tools