The Sun God
by From Christianity Unadorned
Why was the only true god born on a Pagan date—25 December?
The Christian world had no chronology. There is no clue in the gospels to the time of the year when Jesus was born except that it cannot have been the rainy season, winter, for shepherds would not have been out at night. Mary forgot the date of a uniquely wonderful day or forgot to mention it in the story. Early Christians found themselves having to tell the world of the most tremendous birth there ever was on this planet not knowing when it happened. No event of their history was marked by justifiable dates for nearly four hundred years. Centuries later the year of Christ's birth was determined but was determined wrongly. Nobody now holds that Jesus was born in the year 1 AD.
For several hundred years various Churches celebrated the birthday of Jesus on different dates. The eastern Churches kept it on January 6th, now the Epiphany. Other Churches chose April 24th or 25th and some placed it in May. Only in 354 AD did the Church choose December 25th as the birth date of Christ. Rome was then the leading Church but Romans had celebrated this festival for centuries as Pagans.
Considering that an omnipotent God descended from heaven and performed astounding miracles to proof that people could now be saved in everlasting life, it seems odd that no one noted the year of his birth, even though many beings from shepherds to angels knew about it. This itself should be sufficient to banish all faith in Christianity.
The birth date of Jesus was unknown. Admittedly, poor and illiterate parents in undeveloped societies do not remember the dates when their children were born and often do not even remember the year—simple people are not ruled by clocks and calendars as we are. If, as Acts claims, Mary, Jesus's mother, lived with the disciples after the crucifixion, evidently she had forgotten when her son was born. But this is surprising even for a poor person considering the interest shown by kings, shepherds and angels at the time. Mary could not have experienced any of this because the gospels indicate that she had no recollection of it.
Nor had the first Christians ever heard of it, scholars of the first two centuries even differing over the year he was born, some believing that he was born fully twenty years before the currently accepted date. Most believed that Jesus's birth date was irrelevant—only his divine life was relevant and that began at his baptism. Sadly they did not know the date of the baptism either and arbitrarily chose 6 January.
Why? Because that date had long been associated with people bathing in blessed water. Followers of the god Osiris, the deity of the Nile, had held a festival, the "Festival of the Immersion", on the river on 6 January from time immemorial. Christian Copts celebrate it still. The Hierophant poured holy water into the river and blessed it, then people bathed in it. The Greeks identified Dionysos with Osiris and so on 6 January the sacred waters were blessed in both the religions of Osiris and Dionysos! Epiphany is a continuation of these Pagan rites.
The Egyptian Gnostics known as Basilidians, seeing the immersion ceremonies as a symbol of the baptism of Jesus, celebrated it on 6 January and gradually Christians elsewhere adopted this date as the anniversary of the Jesus's baptism. By 386 AD the two great Christian festivals were Easter, the festival of the crucifixion, and Epiphany when rivers and springs were blessed and water was drawn and saved for baptisms throughout the year. Aristides Rhetor in about 160 AD tells us that water drawn from the Nile at the "Festival of the Immersion" is at its purest. Stored in wine jars, he says, it improves with time just like wine. And so does the myth! Two centuries later Epiphanius writes that the stored water actually changes into wine! In Dionysos worship water turns to wine on 6 January. The miracle at Cana when Jesus turned water into wine is celebrated in the Christian calendar on 6 January!
Today the Epiphany celebration is most closely associated with the visit of the Magi at Jesus's birth and has been since the fourth century AD. Magi were Persian priests so it seems likely that the legend was introduced from Mithras worship, originally a Persian religion. The babe Mithras was adored by shepherds who brought gifts as in the Luke version of Jesus's birth. Rather than merely equalling a rival, the editor who inserted the birth narrative into Matthew took a more positive tack. He aimed to show the superiority of Christianity over the other eastern religions: the divine baby Jesus is superior to the divine baby Mithras whose priests bring gifts to the new god. So the three Zadokites who officiated at Jesus's rebirth were adapted into Magi from Persia appearing at his actual birth to prove that even the priests of Mithras worshipped the Christian God.
Cassian at about the beginning of the fifth century says the Egyptian provinces regarded Epiphany as being the birth date of Jesus. This was because Jesus was thought to be exactly 30 years old on his baptism. Note also that the Persian law-giver Zoroaster was exactly thirty when the spirit of god descended on him, and the Egyptian Pharaoh's held a celebration called Sed exactly 30 years after the day they had been chosen by their father as his successor, their spiritual birthday.
Toward the end of the fourth century, hoping to counteract the Manichaean heresy—that Jesus was never born at all but was a phantasm—church leaders decided to move the date of Jesus's birth "after the flesh" from 6 January to 25 December, which since 274 AD under the emperor Aurelian, Rome had celebrated as Natalis Solis Invicti, the Birthday of the Unconquerable Sun. During the third and fourth centuries Mithraism had become the most important solar religion in the Empire, Mithras being called, "the Unconquerable Sun". Thus 25 December was celebrated as the "Birthday of the Unconquerable Sun" in the calendar of Philocalus in 336 AD, only a year before Constantine dies and a quarter of a century after he had supposedly made the empire Christian.
The solar celebration was so widespread and popular that the church could neither stop it, nor stop it being identified in the popular mind with Jesus's birth anyway. The importance of 25 December to Pagans made Christian converts think it must also be important to their newly adopted religion. They easily supposed it must have been the birthday of their messiah.
Every Roman was familiar from childhood with the great midwinter festival, and in the earliest days of the Christian era the religions of Persia and Egypt, with similar festivals, had spread over the Empire. The Romans later presided over the council of Nicea (325 AD) which lead to the official Christian recognition of the Trinity as the true nature of God. Since his birth date had been forgotten, when Jesus was made a god by Constantine, 25 December was selected as his birthday, because it was the birthday of other gods, and particularly that of the chief rivals to Christianity in the Roman Empire, Sol Invictus and Mithras. The Pagan emperor Constantine, who presided over the council of Nicea, was popularly considered the embodiment or incarnation of the this supreme Roman sun god. The bishops were typically opportunistic. By celebrating at the same time as Pagan religions they hoped to offer the same benefits and pull in some Pagan punters. Christmas remained the start of a new year up to the tenth century.
The Emperor Honorius (395 to 423) speaks of 25 December as being a "new" festival, and a text of about the same time says it is one of the three great Christian festivals so holy that theatres had to close by law. The churches of the Eastern Empire accused the Western Church of idolatry and sun worship. Jesus was identified with the sun by both Cyprian and Ambrose. Jesus and Mithras had become almost identical in the minds of the western populace. Saint Augustine was one who did not approve of this particular concession to Paganism.
Christmas festivals today incorporate many other Pagan customs, such as the use of holly, mistletoe, Yule logs, and wassail bowls. The Christmas tree itself is the most obvious aspect of ancient Pagan celebrations which were later incorporated into church rites. Scholars believe that the Christian celebration was originally derived in part from rites held by pre-Christian Germanic and Celtic peoples to celebrate the winter solstice. The Christmas tree, an evergreen trimmed with lights and other decorations, because it keeps its green needles throughout the winter months, was believed by pre-Christian Pagans to have special powers of protection against the forces of nature and evil spirits. The Christmas tree is derived from the so-called paradise tree, symbolizing Eden, of German mystery plays. The use of a Christmas tree began early in the 17th century, in Strasbourg, France, spreading from there through Germany, into northern Europe and Great Britain, and then on to the United States.
Christmas is not the only Christian festival which was borrowed from ancient Paganism and adapted to the Essenism of Jesus. There is also Easter, the Feast of St John, the Holy communion, the Annunciation of the virgin, the assumption of the virgin, and many others have their roots in ancient Pagan worship. Midsummer Day is the Feast of St John the Baptist and is dedicated also to Saints Philip and James. Saints Peter, James, Andrew and Paul were given unimportant days even though we are told they were Christ's Apostles.
Christians were never too keen on following the instructions of their holy texts though they usually made a great show of studying them. Had they taken notice they could not have taken these Pagan practices into the divine religion of Essenism. The scriptures warned against it quite explicitly:
Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou inquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. (Deut 12:30)
It was hard for the gentile Christian converts though. They had lately been celebrating these festivals and all their friends still were. So they thought: "What does it matter?" That has often been the enduring strength of Christianity. Its ministers have been so flexible in the face of serious rivalry as to be unprincipled. Yet in the face of weak or isolated rivals, it has applied the devil's own punishments as if they were the guardians of hell not heaven.
Christmas Before Christ
Long before Christianity, as mid-winter approached, Rome was lit up with joy. It was the festival of the old vegetation-god Saturn who, as a god, died or was displaced by Jupiter, the sky-god, but had a fine temple on the Capitol. His festival lasted seven days, from December 17th to 24th, and was the most joyous time of the joyous Roman year. For the whole week, no work was done, the one law being good cheer and good nature, but the 25th was the culmination of it all, the greatest festival in the Roman calendar—the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun…
There was great rejoicing, illuminations and public games, and all shops were closed. Presents were exchanged, and the slaves were indulged in special liberties—on this one day they were free. They donned the conical cap of the freedman—as frolickers continue at Christmas, and on other festive occasions today, to don caps of paper—and sit at table while masters wait on them.
On 25 December, crowds filled the streets and raised festive cries, and the women of Rome paraded, singing in a loud voice, Unto us a child is born this day. Stalls laden with presents lined the streets near the Forum, but the great present of the season was a doll, of wax or terracotta. Hundreds of thousands of these dolls were on sale on the stalls and held in the arms of passers by. Once human beings were sacrificed to Saturn, and, as human life grew more important than religion, the god or his priests had to be content with effigies of men or maids—dolls! It was a time of peace on earth, for by Roman law no war could begin during the Saturnalia, and of good-will toward all men.
The festival went back far into the mists of prehistoric times. It had been earlier a one-day festival, the feast of Saturn, an important magico-religious festival for insuring the harvest of the next year, rejoicing that the year's work was over, and helping and propitiating the god of fecundity by generous indulgence in wine and love. The mysterious winter dying of the sun was also arrested. When it was on the turn, it seemed to hover at the same altitude in the sky for three days, from the solstice, before observably beginning to rise on the 25th, the great day of the sun's rebirth.
Christians never think it strange that the birth date of Jesus is also the birth date of many of the incarnated gods of antiquity. They never think it curious that it was for ancient astronomers the last day of the year—when the year was re-born and a new sun began to climb again in the heavens. That Pagans venerated the birthday of Christ as the birthday of their gods is beyond coincidence .
At the first moment after midnight of 24 December the nations of the East would rise at midnight to celebrate the arrival of 25 December, the birthday of their gods. At midnight on the twenty-fifth of the month Savarana, which is our December, millions of Krishna's disciples celebrated his birthday by decorating their houses with garlands and gilt paper, and giving presents to friends. The people of China also traditionally celebrated this day, closing their shops. Buddha is said to have been born on this day after the Holy Ghost had descended on his virgin mother Maya. The god of the Persians, Mithras, was born on the 25th of December long before the coming of Jesus.
The Egyptians celebrated this day as the birth day of their great saviour Horus, the Egyptian god of light and son of a virgin mother, the queen of the heaven, Isis. Osiris, god of the dead and the underworld in Egypt, another son of a holy virgin, was born on the 25th of December. Adonis, revered as a dying and rising god among the Phrygians then the Greeks, was born on the 25th of December. His worshipers held him a yearly festival representing his death and resurrection, in midsummer. Even the temple at Jerusalem was used to celebrate the birthday of the god Adonis in the years when Jesus might have been born, Herod being no Jew by conviction. The cave in Bethlehem which is said to have been the birth place of Jesus was also previously a place in which the birthday of Adonis was celebrated.
The Greeks celebrated the 25th of December as the birthday of Hercules, the son of their supreme god, Zeus, through the mortal woman Alcmene. Bacchus, the god of wine and revelry among the Romans, known among the Greeks as Dionysos, was born on this day.
The nations of the north also had their greatest festival of the year in midwinter. To these northern barbarians, shuddering in the snow laden forests beyond the Danube, the return of the sun was the most desired event of the year, and they soon learned the time—the winter solstice—when the "wheel" turned. The sun was figured as a fiery wheel, and as late as the nineteenth century there were parts of France where a straw wheel was set on fire and rolled down a hill, to give an augury of the next harvest.
Hence "Yule" (from the Teutonic word "hoel" or "wheel") was the outstanding festival of the ancestors of the French and Germans, the English and Scandinavians. The sun was born, and fires ("Yule logs," still traditionally symbols of Christmas, though usually in the form of a chocolate cake) flamed in the forest villages, the huts were decorated with holly and evergreens, Yule trees were laden with presents, and stores of solid food and strong drink were lavishly opened. This lasted until Twelfth Day, now Epiphany. The Scandinavians celebrated the 25th of December as the birth day of their god Freyr, the son of their supreme god of the heavens, Odin.
The entire known world of two thousand years ago had its "Christmas without Christ." The figure of Christ was drawn in all its chief features before a line of the gospels was written, unarguably in the details relevant to Christmas. The first symbol of the Christian religion, the manger or basket cradle of the divine child, the supposed unique exhortation to humility, was one of the most familiar religious emblems of the Pagan world. Had it been exhibited to a crowd in one of the cosmopolitan cities of the Empire, it would have been strange or new to few. One might pronounce it Horus, another Mithras, another Hermes, another Dionysos, but all would have shrugged their shoulders nonchalantly at the news that it was just another divine sun child in the great family of gods. The world flowed on. The names only were changed.
For Christians, Christ was the real sun that had risen upon the world. Why not boldly pinch the birthday of the unconquered sun? The masses could then be told they were celebrating Jesus—but the ribaldry, license and fooling were contrary to Essenic, now Christian, prudery, and despite attempts to stop it all, it thankfully persists until today.
A prosperous Asiatic sun religion was housed on the Vatican hill before the Popes commandeered it for Christianity. Mithraism spread rapidly, was respected, and was strikingly like Christianity.
Mithras was an old Aryan sun god. The reform of the Persian religion by Zoroaster (Zarathrustra) had put the ethical deity Ormuzd so high above the old nature gods that he was practically the one god. But Mithras stole upward, as gods do, and Persian kings of the fifth century BC put him on a level with Ormuzd.
The Persians conquered and blended with Babylon, and Mithras rose to the supreme position and became an intensely ethical deity. He was, like Aten and Christ, the sun of the world. He sacrificed the pleasures of life, like Christ but unlike Zeus. Drastic asceticism and purity were demanded of his worshippers. They were baptized in blood. They practiced the most severe austerities and fasts. They had a communion supper of bread and wine. They worshiped Mithras in underground temples, artificial caves called grottos, which blazed with the light of candles and reeked with incense.
Every year they celebrated the birthday of this god, who had come to take away the sins of the world, and the day was December 25th. As that day approached, near midnight of the 24th, Christians might see the stern devotees of Mithras going to their temple on the Vatican, and at midnight it would shine with joy and light. The Saviour of the world was born. He had been born in a cave, like so many other sun-gods, and some of the apocryphal gospels put the birth of Christ in a cave. He had had no earthly father. He was born to free men from sin, to redeem them.
F Cumont, the great authority on Mithras, who it is now fashionable to disparage, has laboriously collected for us all these details about the Persian religion, and more than one of the Christian Fathers refers nervously to the close parallel of the two religions. The Saviour Mithras was in possession, had been in possession for ages, of December 25th as his birthday. He was the real "unconquered sun", a sun god transformed into a spiritual god, with light as his emblem and purity his supreme command. What could the Christians do? Nothing, until they had the ear of the emperors. Then they appropriated December 25th, and even bits of the Mithraic ritual, and they so zealously destroyed the traces of the Mithraic religion that one has to be a scholar to know anything about it.
There is more. A Roman writer of the fourth century, Macrobius, in a work called "Saturnalia" (1:18) discusses the practice of representing the gods in the temples as of different ages. He says:
These differences of age refer to the sun, which seems to be a babe at the winter solstice, as the Egyptians represent him in their temples on a certain day, that being the shortest day, he is then supposed to be small and an infant.
This is confirmed and elaborated by a Christian writer, the author of the "Paschal Chronicle," who says:
Jeremiah gave a sign to the Egyptian priests, saying that their idols would be destroyed by a child-Saviour, born of a virgin and lying in a manger. That is why they still worship as a goddess a virgin-mother, and adore an infant in a manger.
He wants to explain age old customs to which their god is indebted as imitations of their own much later god. Horus, the god in question, was an old sun god of the Egyptians. In the adjustment of the rival Egyptian gods, when the tribes were amalgamated in one kingdom, about 3000 years before Jesus was born, Horus was made the son of Osiris and Isis. The latter goddess was the sister and the spouse or lover of Osiris, but whether we should speak of her as "a virgin mother" is a matter of words. In one Egyptian myth she was fecundated by Osiris in their mother's womb, in another and more popular, she was miraculously impregnated by contact with the false phallus of the dead Osiris. Virginity in goddesses is a relative matter.
Whatever we make of the myths, Isis seems to have been originally a virgin goddess, and in the later period of Egyptian religion she was again considered a virgin goddess, demanding strict abstinence from her devotees. At this period, apparently the birthday of Horus was annually celebrated, about December 25th, in the temples. As both Macrobius and the Christian writer say, a figure of Horus as a baby was laid in a manger, in a scenic reconstruction of a stable, and a statue of Isis was placed beside it. Horus was, in a sense, the Saviour of mankind. He was their avenger against the powers of darkness, he was the light of the world. His birth festival was Christmas without Christ.
This spectacle is presented in every church in the world on December 25th. Catholic priests have taught their flocks to believe St Francis of Assisi invented this touching scene of the humble birth of the redeemer. Francis of Assisi will never have read the obscure "Paschal Chronicle," but some other Christian writer had seen and reproduced it, and it had come to the knowledge of Francis. Christ's crib is an exact reproduction of the scene exhibited in Egyptian temples centuries before Christ, and the Egyptian legend itself is thousands of years older than Jeremiah. On the analogy of the Christian practice, the Egyptian legend must have described Isis as having given birth to her divine son in a stable. In Alexandria, there was a similar Greek celebration on December 25th of the birth of a divine son to Kore (the "virgin").
And this is not the end. The Greeks had a similar celebration. The idea of a divine son being born in a cave was common, or there were actually several scenic representations of the birth of these gods in their festivals. J M Robertson gives three in Christianity and Mythology. Hermes, the Logos (like Jesus in John), the messenger of the gods, son of Zeus and the virgin Maia, was born in a cave, and he performed extraordinary prodigies a few hours after birth. He was represented as a "child wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger." Dionysos (or Bacchus) was similarly represented. The image of him as a babe was laid in a basket cradle in the cave in which he was born. There is good reason to think that Mithras was figured in the same way.
From end to end of the Roman Empire December 25th was the birthday of the unconquered sun, of the Saviour Mithras, and of the divine Horus and they and the others, whose festivals were in other seasons, were represented almost exactly as the birth of Christ was described in the gospels and is depicted in Catholic churches today.
The tradition of divine saviours being born of undeflowered women has an astronomical aspect. It has been said, "the adventures of Jesus Christ are all depicted among the stars," and this is why the Romans saw him as a sun god like Mithras with whom he eventually became identified.
The myth of the Star of Bethlehem comes from the prophecy of Numbers 24:17:
There shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Seth.
This is a text often quoted by Christian writers as having a prophetic reference to the Christian Messiah. The same text goes on to say, "It shall destroy the children of Seth," a prophecy which is plainly false if it is meant, like the rest of it, to apply to Jesus Christ. This prophecy is obviously a prophecy of a traditional victorious messiah of Israel, modelled on king David.
The star of Jacob or Judah, both being the same, is shown on astronomical maps as prominent in the constellation Virgo, the Virgin, called by the Hebrews, Ephraim. It was known in the Syrian, Arabian and Persian Systems of astronomy as Messaeil and was considered the ruling genius of the constellation. Messaeil is Messiah El (Son of God)—apparently the star, Spica. The star of Jacob was evidently a figure from astrology, in which the virgin is shown rising with an infant son of God in her arms.
The virgin, with her god-begotten child, the bright star, Spica, represented as an ear of corn (the meaning of the name of the star), was pictured in the heavens from time immemorial. They are present in the Hindu zodiac, at least three thousand years old, and in the ancient Egyptian one. Virgo commences rising at midnight, on the 25th of December, with this star in the east in her arms—the star which piloted the wise men.
According to Albertus Magnus, in his Book on the Universe:
The sign of the celestial virgin rises above the horizon, at the moment we find fixed for the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Sir William Drummond adds in Œdipus Judaicus:
The anointed of El, the male infant, who rises in the arms of Virgo, was called Jesus by the Hebrews… and was hailed as the anointed king or Messiah.
Now though the sun is annually reborn on the date chosen for Christ's birth, 25th of December, the midwinter solstice, for a period the sun was also born at the autumnal equinox as the infant son of God, the bread of life. This is the time of the original Jewish New Year, Rosh ha Shanah, 1 Tishri, the religious new year as opposed to the civil new year which began on 1 Nisan. Rosh ha Shanah was designated in Jewish religious law as a festival and a time of great rejoicing. Paradoxically it was also the Day of Judgement because it was an anniversary of the creation. This is the real date of the birth of Christ, if Christians want to celebrate it.
The reason is that in the centuries ending the first millenium BC the precession of the equinoxes led to a curious celestial event. The child of the cosmic virgin, Spica, rose on the Eastern horizon at the autumnal equinox at the same time as the sun. So after the constellation of the virgin had risen just before dawn in the east, the sun rose just when the bright star Spica was expected to rise. It seemed as if the son of the virgin, the ear of corn symbolising the bread of life (Rosh ha Shanah celebrated the beginning of the agricultural year), had risen as the glorious sun. The virgin had given birth to a god.
What was even more spectacular on some of these occasions was that the morning star, Venus, the Queen of Heaven, rose in the constellation of Virgo before the sun! So the sun rises as the child of the virgin Queen of Heaven over the eastern horizon, appearing out of the sea in many countries. In Latin sea is Mare whence Maria or Mary. The infant god arises as the light of the East in the arms of his mother, Mary or Venus, the morning star, which rises minutes before the child.
Also interesting is the fact that the Virgin in ancient zodiacs is associated with a tree, in which case the son would be an offshoot, a shoot or a branch, all of which were messianic names, and the word Nazarene comes from the word Neser meaning a branch. The messianic name, Shiloh, which puzzled scholars for a long time also means branch and therefore means the star Spica. When the branch or son of the virgin appears as the light of the east in all his glory then the messiah has been born. Whence:
We have seen his star in the east, and have come to worship him (Mt 2:8).
This phenomenon occurred in 11 BC and 3 BC and either might have been associated with Jesus, though the earlier one is the favourite. The Essenes who were astrologers trained in Babylonian exile would have seen all this. It later escaped into the empire as literal truth instead of the astrological signs it originally was.
The story of the slaughter of the innocents is also widespread because originally it was again part of the allegory of the sun's journey through the heavens. When the sun passed through the constellation of Gemini in May, he was imagined to have destroyed them. The Greek word to destroy is anaireo which literally means to pass through or withdraw from as well as to take away. The sun takes on the characteristics of each constellation it proceeds through so here Hercules is an infant twin. In myth that is, of course, what he was, his brother being Iphicles. So Hercules was a sun god who in his journey through the heavens threatens to kill himself as an infant of the constellation, Gemini. His earthly, adopted father had to flee with him and his mother to Galem for protection from threatening danger. Herod's name suggested a link with Hercules so he fitted appropriately into the legend. Jesus was, of course, supposed to have had a twin brother, Thomas.
Pharaoh's slaughter of the children, Christians believe, is referred to in the Bible when Rachel weeps for her children, a passage introduced by: "In Rama there was a voice heard."
Note that Rama is the Indian and Phoenican name for the zodiac, and that Rachel had two children only—Joseph and Benjamin—equivalent to Castor and Pollux. Rachel then was the queen of heaven, Venus, because for the Assyrians and the Phoenicians she wept when the sun passed through the astronomical twins, the constellation of Gemini, doubtless fearing their destruction.
The stories of gods cohabiting with virgins, and begetting other gods, are of astronomical origin. Astronomy and religion were interwoven at an early period of time.
Jesus as a Sun God
The idea of a Son of God is amongst the oldest cults of the patriarchal god worshippers. The sun is the son of heaven in all primitive faiths. The firmament is personified as the Father on High and the sun becomes the Son of God. Then, because no wrongdoing is missed by the sun in its travels around the heavens, it becomes the Son of Righteousness. The sun in its annual course around the zodiac and its regular daily periodicity typified the ever present, everlasting, ever faithful qualities that reassured people.
For Christian clergy who are always scared that one of these days their flocks will catch on and be outraged at the confidence trick they have been subject to, the Jesus of the New Testament bears an uncomfortable resemblance to other mythical figures like Bacchus, the Phoenician Ies, the Hindu Krishna, the Persian Mithras, the Egyptian Horus and other sun gods.
Many of the patriarchs, prophets, priests and kings of the Bible are sun gods allegoricized as men by ancient poets. They can be recognized because there is negligible historical evidence for them. Many scholars agree that the patriarchs of the Bible and even Saul, David, Solomon and Samson are ancient gods whose myths have been ludicrously accepted as history even by the most scholarly of men.