Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
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03-12-2016, 08:20 AM (This post was last modified: 03-12-2016 09:54 AM by DLJ.)
Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Did you ever think it seemed ironic that Jesus said he came to save the Jews and then about forty years after he died almost the entire nation was slaughtered in one of the bloodiest genocides in recorded history? I'm talking about Roman genocide of the Jews in the war of 66-70 AD. Christians like to euphemistically refer to that as "the destruction of the temple", quietly ignoring the genocide, calling it a fulfilment of Jesus' prophecy:

“And Jesus went out… to shew him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said… There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down. Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world And Jesus answered and said… ye shall hear of wars… Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you… and then shall the end come… Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountainsThis generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”
– Matthew 24:1-34

To be clear, Jesus just prophesied three things: 1) the destruction of the temple, 2) genocide in Judea 3) his second coming and the end of their world, all within one generation of Jesus' ministry. Having been raised Mormon and homeschooled I never dug much deeper than that, nor even had the opportunity, until I got out of the church at age 18 when I ran from them as fast as I could. That was 18 years ago and I haven't spoken to my dad since then. But now I know that this is what is called the "preterist" view, the view that Jesus' second coming and the end of the world for the Jews already came, about 40 years or "one generation" after Jesus, exactly as it clearly states in Matthew and Luke. But the thing with the preterist view is that you have to accept that the second coming was fulfilled by the invading Roman armies lead first by Vespasian, who then became emperor of Rome and "the entire inhabitable earth", and then finished by his son Titus who kept his future adopted brother Josephus as a translator to treat with the hard hearted Jews who refused to surrender.

The funny thing is, there was one general of the Jewish army named Josephus who was captured by Vespasian very early in the war. He told Vespasian that he had visions from God telling him that "God's favor had gone over to the Romans" and that Josephus was to be a messenger from God telling Vespasian that he would become emperor and "Lord of the entire inhabitable earth". When that prediction later came true, Josephus was eventually adopted into the royal family and took the family name "Flavius". Vespasian had two biological sons, Titus and Domitian, who were born before his wife died, before the war. But Josephus was the only son that was gotten by the father, in the siege of Jotapata.

It turns out that Josephus wrote the only existing historical account of the war and the second coming and destruction of Israel. It is called "The Wars of the Jews" and is composed in seven books and is extremely long and difficult to read if you did not grow up reading King James English daily as pretty much your only form of homeschooling, since it is translated into 18th century English. But if you read it, it kind of comes across as someone bearing their testimony.

Josephus is constantly praising the Romans as the kingdom with God's favor and he constantly curses two groups of people: the Jewish rebels and the Greek writers and satirists which he apparently hated, as he goes with the Romans all over Galilee and Judea begging the rebels to "repent" of their seditions or they will be destroyed. Ironically, Jesus also went all over Galilee and Judea telling people that the kingdom of God was come and that they would all be burned with fire if they did not repent of the sins, while constantly saying "woe" to the scribes and Pharisees. They have pretty much exactly the same life story even down to "Boy Jesus in the Temple".

“…There have been indeed some bad men, who have attempted to calumniate my history, and took it to be a kind of scholastic performance for the exercise of young men. A strange sort of accusation and calumny this!…”
– Flavius Josephus Against Apion, Book I, 1:10

“…He adds another Grecian fable, in order to reproach us…”
– Flavius Josephus Against Apion, Book II :8

“Nay, this miracle or piety derides us further, and adds the following pretended facts to his former fable…”
– Flavius Josephus Against Apion, Book I, 11:10

Now in the book of Revelation an angel tells about a "book with seven seals", just like the seven books of "The Wars of the Jews", published in 75 AD and also "another book called the book of Life" (The Life of Flavius Josephus, published a little later) and says that if you eat that book it will be sweet in your mouth like honey but it will make your belly bitter. In fact, as at turns out, almost every passage of the Gospels and the book of Revelation can be viewed as a elegant Grecian satire of some passage from the Wars of the Jews or the other works of Josephus, both sweet and bitter.

For example, "Jesus Walks on Water" can be seen as a satirical representation of the description from Josephus when he came with Titus to the Dead Sea. It seems to be making fun of Josephus' description of the increased buoyancy there being able to "bears up the heaviest things" as if "a wind forced them up":

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The "Parable of the Patches and Wineskins" appears to be a satirical representation of what happened when the followers of the rebel leader John came out of Jerusalem to Josephus and Titus to surrender. After having had no food ("fasting") for a long time they were swelled "like men in a dropsy" and when they met with "too great abundance among the Romans" ("can the children of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them?") they burst like new wine that was put into old bottles:

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Likewise, "Jesus Heals Blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus" appears to be making a mockery of when Josephus was cursing the Greek writers for their contradictions in their histories, especially "Timaeus and those that came after him":

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"Jesus and Nicodemus" appears to be a satirical representation of a conversation that Josephus had with Nicanor about surrendering to the Romans. Josephus wanted to come out and go over to the kingdom of God, but the Jews with him in the hole wouldn't let him, they wanted to all commit suicide together: the only way he can enter into the kingdom of God is if he is born again, like born of the spirit and then again born of the water:

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When "Jesus Finds Philip" it seems to be making a joke about how very long and boring Josephus' verbose descriptions can be. Just like Jesus, you might spend a whole day going through Josephus' description of Galilee before you find Philip, the only interesting thing in there:

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Did you ever wonder what it meant for Jesus to "have his face set to go to Jerusalem"?

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The "Star of Bethlehem" appears to be a satirical representation of Josephus' description of Haley's Comet and the "wise men" who misinterpreted it to be a sign that they would win the war against the Romans:

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These are all excerpts from my book "Revealing the Man of Sin", available on Amazon Kindle, which paints the Gospels and the book of Revelation (written in Greek) as Greek satires of the book with the seven seals written by Josephus. It now contains 480 such examples of passages in the NT which can be very compellingly viewed as a satirical representation of a passage in the works of Josephus, especially The Wars of the Jews, covering about 80% of the Gospel passages and ~80% of the book of Revelation. Each satirical passage has about 5 to 8 common story elements with the corresponding passage in Josephus:

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But the angel of the book of Revelation told me to warn you that if you eat this book it will be sweet in your mouth like honey, but it will indeed make your belly bitter.

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04-12-2016, 12:57 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Hi

Your thesis that the NT is a satire is also shared by Joe Atwill in his book Caesar's Messiah. He is of the view that the NT is written by Josephus and other clerics in Alexandria and is intended to "lampoon" (my word) the Jewish rebels who Titus defeated.

Did you come across this position independently or do you build on or agre with Atwill? I think it is a plausible position but not fully developed by Atwill so I am interested in your thesis.
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04-12-2016, 01:34 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Consider

Wait? What did I miss?

Consider
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04-12-2016, 02:41 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
(04-12-2016 12:57 AM)Deltabravo Wrote:  Did you come across this position independently or do you build on or agre with Atwill? I think it is a plausible position but not fully developed by Atwill so I am interested in your thesis.

I would say that I am building on Atwill's work, yes. But he had only around forty parallels and I have 480 and he only recognized a little bit of the "lampooning", the satire is mostly about Josephus but also the Jews and the Romans, Titus and Vespasian, which covers most of the passages of the Gospels and the book of Revelation but primarily just mocking the writings of Josephus. This is where I disagree with Atwill, because he jumps to some conclusions about who wrote the the Gospels, and specifically implicates Josephus and Titus. I cannot imagine that they would be making fun of themselves. I think he reaches that conclusion because these "lampoons" sometimes come off as praising the Romans, but I believe they only sound that way because they are satirizing Josephus who praises the Romans incessantly.

Josephus essentially threw his entire nation under the bus to save himself while helping the Romans and watching them slaughter his entire nation in front of his face including his mother, his father, and his son Gorion who all died in the war and he praises the Romans and the kingdom of God which is bringing God's just vengeance upon his people (remember "who is my mother and who is my brother, he that does the will of him that sent me"?). The way and the things that he writes are just begging to be mocked.

I can't post links here, but if you know about the postflaviana web page, there is a forum there where I posted a lot of excerpts of parallels that I have found in the forum "Christianity is Flavian Vanity" all the posts from Josephson. You can find the parallels that I listed above and many more. Some of them are quite hilarious and others will make your stomach turn (like "The Last Supper").
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04-12-2016, 04:11 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire



NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
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04-12-2016, 05:36 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Yabut.... nice story -- but not enough dragon....................


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04-12-2016, 11:06 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
(04-12-2016 02:41 AM)fhqwhgads Wrote:  
(04-12-2016 12:57 AM)Deltabravo Wrote:  Did you come across this position independently or do you build on or agre with Atwill? I think it is a plausible position but not fully developed by Atwill so I am interested in your thesis.

I would say that I am building on Atwill's work, yes. But he had only around forty parallels and I have 480 and he only recognized a little bit of the "lampooning", the satire is mostly about Josephus but also the Jews and the Romans, Titus and Vespasian, which covers most of the passages of the Gospels and the book of Revelation but primarily just mocking the writings of Josephus. This is where I disagree with Atwill, because he jumps to some conclusions about who wrote the the Gospels, and specifically implicates Josephus and Titus. I cannot imagine that they would be making fun of themselves. I think he reaches that conclusion because these "lampoons" sometimes come off as praising the Romans, but I believe they only sound that way because they are satirizing Josephus who praises the Romans incessantly.

Josephus essentially threw his entire nation under the bus to save himself while helping the Romans and watching them slaughter his entire nation in front of his face including his mother, his father, and his son Gorion who all died in the war and he praises the Romans and the kingdom of God which is bringing God's just vengeance upon his people (remember "who is my mother and who is my brother, he that does the will of him that sent me"?). The way and the things that he writes are just begging to be mocked.

I can't post links here, but if you know about the postflaviana web page, there is a forum there where I posted a lot of excerpts of parallels that I have found in the forum "Christianity is Flavian Vanity" all the posts from Josephson. You can find the parallels that I listed above and many more. Some of them are quite hilarious and others will make your stomach turn (like "The Last Supper").

I will have a look at the web site.

I should warn you, since you are new here, that you won't find a receptive audience here. It's pretty hostile and very PC generally, and closed minded, lots of bullying, flaming and foul language, but there are a few people who may be interested.

And don't mention Sille Hplar... lol
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04-12-2016, 11:23 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
the username, it burns Big Grin
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04-12-2016, 11:58 AM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Quote:I would say that I am building on Atwill's work, yes.

Then stop. Atwill's a putz.

Atheism is NOT a Religion. It's A Personal Relationship With Reality!
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04-12-2016, 12:09 PM
RE: Interpreting the New Testament as Satire
Putz...hahahahahaha

The wit here...seriuosly...
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