Is Jesus of Nazareth A Literary Creation
Drawing on the histories of Josephus, Tacitus, Suetonius, and Pliny as well as the Dead Sea Scrolls, Daniel Unterbrink contends that the “Jesus” of the Bible was actually a composite figure, a clever blend of the Jewish freedom-fighter Judas the Galilean and Paul’s divine-human Christ figure created in the middle of the first century CE. Revealing why Paul was known as a liar, enemy, and traitor in other Jewish literature, he shows that the New Testament Gospels are not transcripts of actual history but creative works of historical fiction designed to promote Paul’s Christianity and serve the interests of the fledgling Gentile Christian communities. He demonstrates how each Gospel is written in light of the success of Paul’s religion and dependent upon his later perspective.
Matching the events depicted in the New Testament with the historically verifiable events in Josephus’ history, Unterbrink pushes the dating of Jesus’ life back nearly a generation to a revolutionary time in ancient Judea. He shows that the real historical Jesus–the physical man behind the fictional stories in Paul’s Gospels–was Judas the Galilean: a messianic pretender and Torah-observant revolutionary bent on overthrowing the Roman government and galvanizing the Jewish people behind his vision of the coming Kingdom of God. In the greatest cover-up of history, this teacher of first-century Israel was replaced by the literary creation known as Jesus of Nazareth.
About Daniel Unterbrink
Daniel T. Unterbrink has dual degrees (Accounting and Education) from the Ohio State University. He spent over twenty years in Medicare Auditing and retired four years ago. His educational background and work experience in Medicare auditing gives him a unique advantage over most scholars. He does not believe anything without solid proof: a good auditor does not make snap judgments but rather is guided by the data. That is why he rejects the modern scholarship approach of interpreting history through secondary sources such as the Gospels and the Book of Acts. These secondary sources must be interpreted through the lens of primary sources, such as Josephus, Tacitus, Suetonius, Pliny and the authentic letters of Paul. His method raises many questions that cannot be answered by the traditional interpretation championed by scholars. As such, Unterbrink has attempted to steer clear from any one interpretation of Christian origins, and has followed the actual historical data in developing his own unique narrative.
In 2004, Unterbrink published his first book, entitled Judas the Galilean. This book set forth the theory that the historical “Jesus” was not the Gospel Jesus of Nazareth but rather a man of history: Judas the Galilean. He followed that up with two other books, New Testament Lies and The Three Messiahs, which strengthened his argument based upon more historical data.
His new book, Judas of Nazareth, summarizes the findings set forth in the previous books and adds significant insights into the formation of the Gospel story as well as the life of Paul. With the help of Barrie Wilson, author of How Jesus Became Christian, Unterbrink hopes to shed new light upon three main questions: Who was the historical Jesus?, Who was the historical Paul?, And, who wrote the Gospel of Mark?