by Acharya S
16 May 2011
Some 80 years after lawyer
Wheless wrote his classic
Forgery in Christianity, it
seems some - or at least one - mainstream scholars are catching up
to the fact that the New Testament is not what it appears to be and
what hundreds of millions have been taught around the world for the
past 2,000 or so years.
Published in 1930, Wheless's work - which was a major influence on
my own after I found it on a bookshelf some 20 years ago -
essentially consists of quoting the authoritative Catholic
Encyclopedia's admissions against interest about the New Testament
books and epistles, as well as the writings of the early Church
Although the Catholic Encyclopedia
("CE") does not go so far as to admit that Christianity itself is
forged, its editors were fairly honest in their scholarly analyses
of some of the individual texts.
Forgery: Writing in the Name of God
Obviously, in order to maintain the
party line and their vocations, CE editors couldn't go so far as New
Testament scholar Dr. Bart Ehrman has done in his new book
Forged - Writing in the Name of God, but even he doesn't go as
far as Wheless did, which was to call the entire gospel tale into
question, including the very historicity of its main character,
Yet, Ehrman's hat in the ring of scholarship basically proving
textual forgery is a step in the right direction. If one truly
studies the literature from
the Mythicist School beginning at the
latest in the 18th century, one will find as much merit in it as in
this "new" analysis of many New Testament texts as forged.
It's just a very small step, really,
when one realizes how much of the NT is bogus and how little
credible, scientific evidence exists that the gospel tale actually
took place when and where claimed or that its main characters were
Conspiracy was published, detailing the same research, which, again,
actually dates back several centuries, the reason the CE wrote about
In Christ Conspiracy - which has been read by
tens of thousands over the past decade+ since its release - I
included a chapter entitled, "The Holy Forgery Mill," in which I
From the very beginning of our quest
to unravel the Christ conspiracy, we encounter suspicious
territory, as we look back in time and discover that the real
foundation of Christianity appears nothing like the image
provided by the clergy and mainstream authorities.
I went on to describe the atmosphere of
fraud that pervaded the founding of the Christian religion,
including wholesale forgery of numerous texts, such as not only the
"apocryphal" or noncanonical writings but also many of the canonical
New Testament books themselves.
I quoted Wheless thus:
The gospels are all priestly
forgeries over a century after their pretended dates.
I then proceeded to provide numerous
proofs of this statement, as well as evidence showing that other
canonical texts such as several "Pauline" epistles were known not to
have emanated from the apostle's own hand, such as the three
"Pastorals" or epistles to Timothy and Titus, as well as Hebrews.
The supposed authorship of the books of
Acts and Revelation is likewise highly questionable, despite claims
to the contrary, as these texts also do not appear in the literary
record until the last half of the second century, neither quoted nor
noticed at all by any Christian or other writer before that time.
I further included the opinion that the
epistles of James, John and Peter were likewise bogus, appearing in
the literary/historical record decades after their purported dates
and so patently forged in the name of the apostles in order to give
authority to doctrines and positions that did not even exist until
the second century.
To reiterate, none of this scholarship is new; it's just the typical
catch-up game being played by somewhat mainstream academics
following on the heels of "radicals" and laymen, although many of
the pioneers in this field of Bible criticism have been professional
theologians and New Testament scholars, as my copious quoting
Since the publication of The Christ Conspiracy, I have written
several more books with expanded scholarship demonstrating this
contention concerning the forged books of the New Testament,
Needless to say, none of the points made
by Ehrman is new to me and, while his details may differ, all of
them can be found in my books, published years ago.
"There were a lot of people in the
ancient world who thought that lying could serve a greater
good," says Ehrman
Ehrman's contention of rampant lying in
antiquity is precisely correct, especially as concerns Christianity,
a fact I demonstrate repeatedly in The Christ Conspiracy.
Indeed, such fraud is the Christ
conspiracy, extending not just to the Christian texts but also to
the gospel tale itself, which is clearly based largely upon the
myths and sayings of pre-Christian cultures such as the Greek,
Roman, Egyptian, European and Indian. This latter contention I also
demonstrate in my books and articles revealing numerous mythical
motifs that were worked into the gospel story, along with Old
Testament "messianic prophecies" that were used as blueprints in the
creation of the Christ myth.
Needless to say, with all the heat I've taken over the past 15+
years online since I began publishing my mythicist articles,
including and especially "The Origins of Christianity," which began
this entire endeavor, it's good to see mainstream scholarship
finally catching up and exposing the truth.
Now, if professional scholars can just
take that last little step onto the solid ground of recognizing the
gospel story as fiction rather than history, we will all be better
Half of New Testament forged - Bible
A frail man sits in
chains inside a dank, cold prison cell. He has escaped death
before but now realizes that his execution is drawing near.
“I am already being poured out
like a drink offering, and the time of my departure has
come,” the man – the Apostle Paul - says in the Bible's 2
Timothy. “I have fought the good fight. I have finished the
race. I have kept the faith.”
The passage is one of the most
dramatic scenes in the New Testament. Paul, the most prolific
New Testament author, is saying goodbye from a Roman prison cell
before being beheaded. His goodbye veers from loneliness to
defiance and, finally, to joy.
There's one just one problem - Paul didn't write those words. In
fact, virtually half the New Testament was written by impostors
taking on the names of apostles like Paul.
At least according to Bart D. Ehrman,
a renowned biblical scholar, who makes the charges in his new
“There were a lot of people in
the ancient world who thought that lying could serve a
greater good,” says Ehrman, an expert on ancient biblical
In “Forged,” Ehrman claims that:
At least 11 of the 27 New
Testament books are forgeries.
The New Testament books
attributed to Jesus' disciples could not have been
written by them because they were illiterate.
Many of the New Testament's
forgeries were manufactured by early Christian leaders
trying to settle theological feuds.
Were Jesus' disciples 'illiterate
peasants?' Ehrman's book, like many of his previous ones, is already
Ben Witherington, a New Testament scholar,
has written a lengthy online critique of “Forged.”...
Will the real Paul stand up? Ehrman reserves most of his
scrutiny for the writings of Paul, which make up the bulk of the
New Testament. He says that only about half of the New Testament
letters attributed to Paul - 7 of 13 - were actually written by
Paul's remaining books are forgeries, Ehrman says. His proof:
inconsistencies in the language, choice of words and blatant
contradiction in doctrine.
For example, Ehrman says the book of Ephesians doesn't conform
to Paul's distinctive Greek writing style.
He says Paul wrote in short, pointed
sentences while Ephesians is full of long Greek sentences (the
opening sentence of thanksgiving in Ephesians unfurls a sentence
that winds through 12 verses, he says).
“There's nothing wrong with
extremely long sentences in Greek; it just isn't the way
Paul wrote. It's like Mark Twain and William Faulkner; they
both wrote correctly, but you would never mistake the one
for the other,” Ehrman writes.
The scholar also points to a famous
passage in 1 Corinthians in which Paul is recorded as saying
that women should be “silent” in churches and that,
“if they wish to learn anything,
let them ask their own husbands at home.”
Only three chapters earlier, in the
same book, Paul is urging women who pray and prophesy in church
to cover their heads with veils, Ehrman says:
“If they were allowed to speak
in chapter 11, how could they be told not to speak in
Why people forged
Forgers often did their work
because they were trying to settle early church disputes, Ehrman
The early church was embroiled in
conflict - people argued over the treatment of women, leadership
and relations between masters and slaves, he says.
“There was competition among
different groups of Christians about what to believe and
each of these groups wanted to have authority to back up
their views,” he says. “If you were a nobody, you wouldn't
sign your own name to your treatise. You would sign Peter or
So people claiming to be Peter and
John - and all sorts of people who claimed to know Jesus - went
into publishing overdrive. Ehrman estimates that there were
about 100 forgeries created in the name of Jesus' inner-circle
during the first four centuries of the church.
Witherington concedes that fabrications and forgeries floated
around the earliest Christian communities...
Ehrman, of course, has another point of view. “Forged” will help
people accept something that it took him a long time to accept,
says the author, a former fundamentalist who is now an agnostic.
The New Testament wasn't written by the finger of God, he says -
it has human fingerprints all over its pages.
“I'm not saying people should
throw it out or it's not theologically fruitful,” Ehrman
says. “I'm saying that by realizing it contains so many
forgeries, it shows that it's a very human book, down to the
fact that some authors lied about who they were.”