"I cannot live without books." -- Thomas Jefferson

Monday, April 5, 2010

Paul Verhoeven's Search for the Historical Jesus

Filmmaker Paul Verhoeven publishes a historical portrait of Jesus...

In Jesus of Nazareth, Verhoeven relates the story of how as a four year old boy he once asked his father if Jesus had felt any pain while nailed to the cross. His father thought that Jesus probably had. Little Paul replied, "But if he was the son of God, couldn't God have made the pain go away?" Verhoeven says he doesn't remember what his father said in reply, but this was a formative moment in the filmmaker's lifelong interest in Jesus Christ.

In 1985 Verhoeven heard of the Jesus Seminar, comprised of scholars and theologians, and later joined it. The group is concerned with what the historical Jesus actually did and said. Verhoeven is the only non-theologian ever admitted into the Seminar.

The book is split into an introduction, ten chapters and an epilogue. The ten chapters are:

1. From Conception to Early Adulthood
2. John the Baptist and Jesus
3. Jesus' Proclamation of the Kingdom of God
4. Jesus the Exorcist (I particularly dug this chapter title: very evocative... Could be a great movie)
5. Jesus Flees
6. The Transfiguration
7. The Confrontation
8. Lazarus is Killed
9. The Last Day of Jesus' Life
10. The Traitor

There are also two appendices: A) The Secret Gospel of Mark, and B) Did Jesus Select the Twelve Disciples Himself?

Some things I learned from Paul Verhoeven in this book:

1) Hitler farted a lot in meetings with his staff and generals, and they had to stand by and breathe in the "stench."
2) Jesus and his disciples, being itinerant, "subsisted on whatever food came their way, so they probably had gastrointenstinal problems. Jesus' companions must have heard him snore, snuffle, and fart."
3) Verhoeven writes about farting quite a bit.
4) Jesus was essentially a fugitive (according to Verhoeven and others)
5) That Jane Schaberg presented the idea that Jesus might have been the product of a rape in her book The Illegitimacy of Jesus: A Feminist Theological Interpretation of the Infancy Narratives.

Those are just a few things you will learn in Verhoeven's Jesus of Nazareth.

1 comment:

Anders Branderud said...

"Historical J....."!?!

The persons using that contra-historical oxymoron (demonstrated by the eminent late Oxford historian, James Parkes, The Conflict of the Church and the Synagogue) exposes dependancy upon 4th-century, gentile, Hellenist sources.

While scholars debate the provenance of the original accounts upon which the earliest extant (4th century, even fragments are post-135 C.E.), Roman gentile, Hellenist-redacted versions were based, there is not one fragment, not even one letter of the NT that derives DIRECTLY from the 1st-century Pharisee Jews who followed the Pharisee Ribi Yehoshua.
Historians like Parkes, et al., have demonstrated incontestably that 4th-century Roman Christianity was the 180° polar antithesis of 1st-century Judaism of ALL Pharisee Ribis. The earliest (post-135 C.E.) true Christians were viciously antinomian (ANTI-Torah), claiming to supersede and displace Torah, Judaism and ("spiritual) Israel and Jews. In soberest terms, ORIGINAL Christianity was anti-Torah from the start while DSS (viz., 4Q MMT) and ALL other Judaic documentation PROVE that ALL 1st-century Pharisees were PRO-Torah.

There is a mountain of historical Judaic information Christians have refused to deal with, at: www.netzarim.co.il (see, especially, their History Museum pages beginning with "30-99 C.E.").
Original Christianity = ANTI-Torah. Ribi Yehoshua and his Netzarim, like all other Pharisees, were PRO-Torah. Intractable contradiction.

Building a Roman image from Hellenist hearsay accounts, decades after the death of the 1st-century Pharisee Ribi, and after a forcible ouster, by Hellenist Roman gentiles, of his original Jewish followers (135 C.E., documented by Eusebius), based on writings of a Hellenist Jew excised as an apostate by the original Jewish followers (documented by Eusebius) is circular reasoning through gentile-Roman Hellenist lenses.

What the historical Pharisee Ribi taught is found not in the hearsay accounts of post-135 C.E. Hellenist Romans but, rather, in the Judaic descriptions of Pharisees and Pharisee Ribis of the period... in Dead Sea Scroll 4Q MMT (see Prof. Elisha Qimron), inter alia.

To all Christians: The question is, now that you've been informed, will you follow the authentic historical Pharisee Ribi? Or continue following the post-135 C.E. Roman-redacted antithesis—an idol?