Lately some of my fellow Masons and I have been having online conversations with a Southern Baptist minister from Kentucky who maintains the Bible should be taken literally in all matters. Even when presented obvious Biblical contradictions, Pastor Josh Buice cannot see them.
The conversations can be found on Pastor Josh's blog, and also at this link on The Burning Taper.
One of the more recent questions asked him to explain why most of the "gods" that pre-dated Jesus — Osiris/Horus, Krishna, Mithra, Tammuz, Zoroaster, et al — were so similar in their characteristics to Jesus. They were born of virgins, some on December 25, had disciples, worked miracles, and were killed by being hung from trees. They were all resurrected.
Pastor Josh's only response was to ask if there were any eyewitnesses to these accounts, not realizing that no one was claiming these early gods existed, only that the stories had existed. Josh appears to be somewhat of a literalist.
Another fundamentalist Christian was faced with the same questions. Brian Fleming went looking for Jesus, he said, and the result was his film, The God Who Wasn't There.
A promotional page for the film, which was released in 2005, says:
The movie that has been astounding audiences in theaters around the world is now available on a high-quality, feature-packed DVD.
In this provocative, critically acclaimed documentary, you will discover:
- The early founders of Christianity seem wholly unaware of the idea of a human Jesus
- The Jesus of the Gospels bears a striking resemblance to other ancient heroes and the figureheads of pagan savior cults
- Contemporary Christians are largely ignorant of the origins of their religion
- Fundamentalism is as strong today as it ever has been, with an alarming 44% of Americans believing Jesus will return to earth in their lifetimes
- And God simply isn't there
Dazzling motion graphics and a sweeping soundtrack propel this uncompromising and taboo-shattering documentary that Newsweek says "irreverently lays out the case that Jesus Christ never existed."
The God Who Wasn't There includes provocative interviews with:
- Sam Harris, PEN Award-winning author of The End of Faith
- Robert M. Price, Jesus Seminar fellow and author of The Incredible Shrinking Son of Man
- Alan Dundes, Professor of Folklore at the University of California at Berkeley
- Richard Carrier, historian and author of Sense and Goodness Without God
- Barbara & David P. Mikkelson, authors of the Urban Legends Reference Pages at snopes.com
- And many others
Mary and I have not yet seen this film, but have ordered it and eagerly await its arrival.
View the trailer and clips of The God Who Wasn't There.
View the original press release.
Jesus Christ | The God Who Wasn't There | Religious Movies