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hardly harmonize this prophecy with the repeated assertions that he and his divine father were gods of Love and Peace ! Time has shown that his statement, “ that there be some standing here which shall not taste of death till they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom,” was a delusion. And who was the original of the noble and grand character, for we find the same individual outside the Gospels, and centuries before the time of Jesus? And in what way was the grandeur of character shown, for there is no record of anything wonderful that he ever said or did, as we have seen? Then again, he lacked those characteristics which are supposed to belong to divine beings. He was subject to hunger, anger, and reckless passion; he was wanting in wisdom and a general knowledge of science and philosophy; and he was insufficiently acquainted with the daily requirements of human life. From the accounts given of him-and this is in accordance with what we should expect from his early training among the Essene monks—we would judge him to have been a morbid sentimentalist, misanthrope, and religious fanatic.
The doctrine of the “ Trinity," which with mariolatry was of Egyptian origin, rests upon the supposition that Jesus was part of the godhead, and he himself is made to say: "I and my father are one” (John x. 30); and “ All things are delivered to me of my father, and no man knoweth the son but the father, and no man knoweth the father save the son, and he to whomsoever the son will reveal him” (Matt. xi. 27); also, “Before Abram was, I am” (John viii. 58). What unutterable rubbish and mystic wordiness! Now there are numerous passages in the Gospels which contradict this, and he himself says : “My father is greater than I” (John xiv. 28); "the son can do nothing of himself” (John v. 19). So that, though in some parts of the N. T. he is represented as claiming to be equal with his (divine) father, in others he makes no such claim.
The Christian definition of the triune God is “one living and true God, everlasting, without body, parts, or passions” (Prayer Book, Art. i.)—an excellent description of nothing. Yet this God, without “body” and “parts," walked in the Garden of Eden, talked to Adam, met Moses on Mount Sinai, appeared at the door of the tabernacle, talked to Moses “face to face, as a man talketh to his friends," presented his "back parts" to the gaze of Moses, and was seen by Aaron, Isaac, Jacob, Nadab, Abihu, and seventy others. This God without “passions " exhibited anger, jealousy, “love for all men,” and damned some whom he sent to Hell. The fact is, the more Christian theologians try to describe their God, the more inextricable mess they get into. They have not a scrap of evidence to bring forward that such a deity as Yahuh, which they have pictured to their imagination, ever existed ; and they have the plain statement in the Psalms (lxxxiv. 11), that “the Lord God [Yahuh of the gods] is a (or the] sun.” See also Psalm civ. 19.
The title “Messiah,” which was claimed for Jesus, was synonymous with “King of the Jews," was suggestive of political designs and aspirations, and was, therefore, an extremely dangerous one to assume. Josephus tells us (Antiq., xviii. 1) of a sedition produced by a messiah ; also of one Theudas (xx. V. 1), who called himself a “prophet," and deluded many of his workers, saying he would divide the river Jordan, and thus afford them an easy passage across. Troops of Roman soldiers were sent after them, killing many, and taking many alive to Jerusalem, together with the head of Theudas. Then, what are we to suppose would have become of this wandering young ascetic, Jesus, a comparative stranger in his own country, had he assumed this title, as he is alleged to have done?
Then there is nothing more extraordinary than the way he is reported to have gone about his work as a Messiah. His divine father, Yahuh, is said to have so loved the world that he sent his only begotten son to “seek and save that which was lost” (Luke xix. 10), and promised that “whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life” (John iii. 16). Yet, instead of telling his father's “ chosen,” but “lost” ones, what to do to be saved, giving a satisfactory reason why they required saving, and from what, and leaving written instructions for future generations, with full information regarding the conditions of the plan of salvation his father had formed, he simply went about the little province of Galilee preaching platitudes to the Jews, and narrating allegorical stories, which he called "parables," without attempting to explain their hidden meaning ; calling himself a “good shepherd,” a “door,” a “vine,”“ living bread," “ living water," " light of the world,” “the resurrection,”
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“the life,” etc., etc., and continually repeating such meaningless expressions as “repent,” and “believe” in the gospel, and in his name, for the “kingdom of God is at hand." But he never once explained what they were to repent of, or what he meant by the “gospel” or the “ kingdom of God.” As to giving them a gospel, he does not appear to have given them a single line, and it is not shown that he was even able to write. Time has shown, too, that the kingdom of God was not “at hand.”
Though we are told that this Messiah came to save “them that were lost," and that it was not the wish of Yahuh, his father, that “any should be lost,” he deliberately put every difficulty in the way of his father's chosen people finding the way to "eternal life.” He tells us that he had made the gate “ wide" and the way “broad” that led to destruction, and narrowed, and thus made difficult, the gate that leads to eternal life, so that “few” would be able to find it (Matt. vii. 13). This was a curious way of saving people who were lost, and whom he and his father professed to love so much. It is certainly not the way any ordinary human being in this prosaic age would proceed to effect such an important business as saving a whole world from a fearful doom, a doom which this loving and beneficent Creator had pre-arranged for them! When he restored the sight of the blind man (Mark viii. 23)—assuming that it really occurred- did he do it in the sight of the chosen people he had been sent to save, in order that they might see and believe at once ? No; he took the man out into the country, where he adopted the old pagan remedy and applied spittle to his eyes, and told him not to go near the town or show himself to his fellow-townsmen !
None but the Jews were, in the original plan of redemption, to participate in the message of salvation—" them that were lost of the house of Israel.” “Go not,” he said, “ into any way of the Gentiles, and enter not into any city of the Samaritans” (Matt. x. 5); though, when he passed through Samaria, we are told (John iv. 39-42), the people of Sychem believed in him, saying: “This is, indeed, the saviour of the world.” So that those to whom he was sent he treated to allegories only, and those to whom he was not sent, though they showed an inclination to believe in him, he studiously avoided. When he performed his “wonderful
works,” he did them while no one was looking, which reminds us of the séances of the present day, which require darkness as an essential condition before the spirits can be induced to manifest themselves. The only persons to whom he appears to have paid any attention, with a view to delivering his message, and helping them to salvation, were a select few-his disciples, Mary Magdalen, one of the two thieves who are said to have been hung with him, and a few women who followed him about and “ministered unto him of their substance."
The condition on which a place in heaven might be obtained was apparently very simple-faith ; belief in him or on his name. But, when we come to look into this, we find that it was not dependent on the free-will of the individual, but on the father, Yahuh: “ All which the father giveth me shall come unto me” (John vi. 37); “No man cometh to me except the father who sent me draw him” (44). “For this cause have I said unto you that no man can come unto me except it be given unto him of the father” (65). So that the “mighty and wonderful works” might as well have not been performed at all, and Jesus might have been saved all the inconvenience and suffering reputed to him. All that Yahuh had to do, if he really wished to save his favourite people, was to “draw” them. But it is to be suspected that his wish to save them was not so strong as was represented, for we are told in John (xii. 39-41) that “they could not believe, because Isaiah said [which was untrue] he hath blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts that they should not see with their eyes nor understand with their hearts, and be converted, and I should heal them. These things said Isaiah because he saw his glory, and he spake of him.” Here we see that the Jews were unable to believe because the “father" did not “draw” them; then they could not believe because he would not permit them! But the above "prophecy” of Isaiah is a fictitious one; the “Prophet” is alluding to events then taking place, and the “glory” spoken of is that of Yahuh, the sun-god, though a deliberate attempt is made by the writer of this Gospel to perpetuate a fraud by making believe that it was Jesus who was meant.
If we turn to the “ fathers of the Church,” we find nothing that would indicate the real occurrence of the events recorded of him. If we go to the very sepulchre of Jesus—i.e., that which is shown as such-it is only to discover that he was never there. If we go to history, we find no trace of him worth mentioning. History knows nothing of the “Star of Bethlehem," nor of the suspension of the order of the universe, etc. The only prophecies upon which Christians relied to support the cause of their Messiah are found on examination to be fictitious; and there is not a scrap of evidence that the miracles attributed to him were ever performed ; but we have records of similar performances by previous messiahs.
The Gospel narratives we find to be unsubstantiated fables, without dates and without names. Places are mentioned that never existed, such as Chorazin and Bethsaida. If we visit the East, we are shown the spot where he was crucified, the fragments of the true cross, which, if all were put together, would build a ship; the nails with which he was attached, though it was the Roman custom to crucify with cords; the tomb in which he was laid ; and the coat which he worethree of which are in existence, each one being the only true one! But so are shown the chains by which Prometheus was bound to the rocks; the footprints of Hercules on the Scythian rock, and his tomb and bones at Cadiz; the tombs of Bacchus in Greece, of Apollo at Delphi, Achilles at Dodona, Æsculapius in Arcadia, Deucalion (he who was saved from the deluge) at Athens, of Osiris in Egypt, and of Jonah (of whale renown) at Nibi-Yunas.
The ideal image which Christians have for nearly 2,000 years worshipped under the name of Jesus has really no authentic counterpart in history. The so-called Lives of Christ, or biographies of Jesus, are simply works of fiction, written by advocates of the religious system of which he is the figure-head; but these authors know no more about him than we do, and have built up their narratives from imagination.
The history of the Christian Messiah “can be followed step by step in the Vedic Hymns ”; where, also, can be found the development which changes the sun from a mere luminary into a “Creator," “ Preserver,” “Ruler," “ Rewarder of the world,” etc. “The first step is the light which meets us on awakening in the morning, and which seems to give new life to man and nature— The giver of