Hi Charles & Everybody!
I´m reading that same book! It´s truly great!
In fact, I think Mr Atwill has stumbled upon nothing less than the very truth behind the mysterious gospel stories. Finally someone did it! I mean, what he´s found out is there for everyone to see! No one can deny it! Not even academic science.
Also, what Joseph Atwill´s research reveals about the origin of the gospel stories seems to go along quite well with Ahmed Osman´s ideas, and perhaps even with yours...
Of course, the Jesus Christ of the Church has been drawn from many sources stemming from Egypt, Syria/Palestine, Persia, Greece, Rome, and even India, from mythology and even astrology (astrotheology) as well as from several historical and semi-historical figures from various times.
But I think Joseph Atwill in his book "Caesar´s Messiah" has finally managed to explain how the gospel stories themselves with their often seemingly irrelevant and mystifying passages were once created, that is that they were written (together with Flavius Josephus´ "War of the Jews") in order to replace the militant Jewish messianism with a version of Judaism that would be obedient to Rome. What was needed was of course a pacifistic and taxpaying Messiah.
No doubt "Caesar´s Messiah" is a book that will shake the very fundament of the Church!
Now, back to the book
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