THE JESUS MYSTERIES by Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy
REVIEW: This is exactly what Paul and John were up against…
Wow, there’s so much; where should I begin? Well, for starters, let me say that the authors of this work are operating under three or four fundamental and critical errors of belief: 1) They assume that the bible version they are citing is the equivalent of the AV, or authorized text (it isn’t); 2) They assume that “Catholic” is equivalent to Christian (it isn’t); 3) They assume automatically that the account of history recorded in the Book of Genesis is not correct (we’ll talk about that later); 4) They are very selective about which historical figures they choose to assume never existed (Jesus Christ, of whom much is written), and which ones they choose to assume did exist (Celsus, the linchpin to their list of pagan references, of whom little is written, and none of his written works even exist any longer). Yes, they are very arbitrary indeed about whom they will historically “grant life” to, these modern-day rehashers of old Gnosticism.
And that is all this is, mind you: a rehashing of the same exact false religion that the New Testament writers fought against and warned about. What I did appreciate about this book was how it allowed me to better appreciate what guys like the apostles John and Paul were up against: I mean, man, this Gnosticism is slick, all right. I gotta give it that.
What we’re given throughout this work is the same old lie that the serpent told Eve in the Garden of Eden, that same old New Age lie that’s being thrown around by the likes of Shirley MacLaine, et al: “You too can be a god!” Yes, of course.
Look, let’s talk about #1 of which I have mentioned above: In the English language, the True Word of God Bible “version” is the King James and the lineage of Bibles that led up to the King James, including the Tyndale, Geneva, Coverdale, Greek, etc. Most other bible versions out there right now are counterfeits (NKJV, NIV, NASB, RSV, ESV, Living, etc.). Sound crazy? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Until I actually did my homework into this area with an open mind. Try reading NEW AGE BIBLE VERSIONS by Gail Riplinger. She documents how ALL other modern versions of the bible are based on minority corrupt texts which were maladjusted to fit New Age agendas by a small and elite cabal of Victorian Age English theosophists. Or read WHICH BIBLE? by David Otis Fuller, or AN UNDERSTANDABLE HISTORY OF THE BIBLE by Dr. Samuel Gipp. Or many others. So anytime the authors of this book quote the bible, they are NOT quoting the true bible, which is why they are able to buttress their Gnostic agenda by it. It ain’t Scripture they are quoting. It’s theosophy packaged as Scripture.
Okay, now for #2: These pagan authors assume that Catholicism is the equivalent of Christianity which, if these authors had just read actual CHRISTIAN sources, rather than their own preferred and skewed selection of pagan sources posing as Christian, then these authors would never have made such a mistake. Try reading “The Two Babylons” by Alexander Hislop. It was written over 90 years ago. It is widely regarded as one of the 10 most significant Christian books ever written. But do these authors cite it? No. Are these authors completely ignorant of it? Quite evidently so. For Hislop proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Roman Catholicism IS but a rehashing of the old Babylonian Mystery Religion. So everytime these authors think they are on to something significant, some amazing parallel between Christianity and paganism, nearly always they are merely talking about Roman Catholicism, not true Christianity. To write about a subject such as this, and yet to be so ignorant of such an author as Hislop, or so many other notable Christian works which would fly cogently in the face of their argument–indeed, destroy their arguments outright–is to evince an egregiously one-sided education.
Okay, #3 now: If you assume that the Book of Genesis is fiction, then you can write whatever you want, as these authors clearly have. But if–just imagine if–this assumption too of these authors is wrong, and Genesis really is human history (as I could show you convincingly it is, given more space), then the minority of legitimate parallels which these authors present showing a connection between pagan mystery worship and true Christianity (discarding all the parallels merely to Roman Catholicism) is easily explained by what happened at the Fall of Mankind in the Garden of Eden: God gave a quite specific prophecy directly to the two antecedents of all mankind, as recorded in Genesis 3:15. And, what happened after that is easily explainable: those prophecies were talked about and remembered among peoples for many generations, although, like all oral traditions, they got warped over time: Instead of looking for and reverencing the Coming Savior, the Holy and Unique Product of a singular coming “Virgin Birth,” pagan peoples began the worship of the “Virgin” herself–something we see in Roman Catholicism, and these other gnostic knock-offs, but which we do NOT find in True Christianity. This pagan Babylonian Mystery Religion achieved its seminal period under the ancient autocrat Nimrod and his licentious and cunning queen, Semiramis. And it is worth repeating: What we see in Roman Catholicism, and what we see in so many other tributary New Age-type religions, is but the lingering hazy hangover of that great and ancient pagan Babylonian religion. The bible, as well as Hislop, speaks much about this. This is all ignored by these authors, of course. True Christianity is something entirely different than what these authors present; it goes right over the heads of these polemic, tabloid-ish writer/researchers, because that’s exactly how they want it to go. No amount of proof will redirect those who want to stay lost.
Another old argument which would seem to devastate the thesis of this book–but which, again, these authors appear entirely ignorant of–was the one put forward so often by that master thinker of the 20th century, C.S. Lewis. He spoke much about certain similarities between the pagan mystery religions and Christianity, and he gave credit to these pagan cults for having appreciated a certain modicum of spiritual truth. For him (as well as myself), the fact that these pagan cults were on to the same thing only further validated True Christianity. For Lewis posed the question, far more than once in his writings: “Wherein do we see the FULFILLMENT of all these notions of a Savior coming to Earth and dying in order to save fallen man?” The answer to Lewis was obvious. It’s obvious to me as well.
But then, I would never invalidate the life of the literal Christ (a peculiarly MODERN argument if there ever was one), while trusting in the existence of this shadowy, nebulous “Celsus” person. You want to talk about shaky ground? There’s shaky ground for you. Boy are these guys desperate. It shows in the way they recklessly, selectively, illogically pick and choose who they are going to believe in as having really existed. In closing, may I add that the language of these authors is NOT the language of scholars, but the language of polemic tabloid journalists. Which concerns me, because in today’s dumbed-down society, that’s exactly where most people are at, mentally. Moreover, these authors are not above outright disingenuousness: When attempting to discredit the Jewish historian Josephus’s reference to Christ as proof for Christ’s literal existence, these authors imply that they have just discovered some incredible fact about how Josephus himself never referred to Jesus, it was but a later addition after the fact by some or other deceitful Christian scribe; the problem with this is just this: it is widely accepted already among true scholars that a few of these references in Josephus may very well have been faked; however, it is also widely accepted among these same scholars, virtually without exception, scholars on both sides of this issue (including the very scholar that these authors reference!) that most of the references to Jesus in the writings of Josephus appear to be genuinely Josephus. These authors fail to tell the reader that. They make out like they’ve stumbled onto something grand here. Yeah, right. Indeed, the driving method of scholarship evinced by these authors throughout this work appears to be nothing more than rampant speculation. Again: Tabloid, I say.
God help these authors on Judgment Day for leading people astray. It will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah on That Day, than it will be for these guys, unless they repent of what they have done.
I could go on and on. I took notes. Like how they tried to make a case that Paul was a gnostic. Holy smokes. That one was so easy to refute I won’t even comment. Folks, read the works I have cited above. Better yet, read the New Testament, in the KING JAMES VERSION of the Bible. I read this book on a dare from a New Age friend of mine. A friend who is lost. I shall continue to pray for her. Jesus lived. And He’s coming back, maybe in your lifetime, maybe not. But either way, you’ve got an appointment with Him. He died for you; if only you will repent and ask Him into your life now, humbly, sincerely. Jesus Christ did the rest, painfully, and with a lot of singularly innocent Blood. I speak to the unsaved. The saved already know it.
Rating: Don’t Bother