Too Strange to be a Coincidence?

by DevonMcBride 11 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • DevonMcBride

    According to the Biblical account, Pilate offerend the Jews the release of just one prisoner and they chose Barabbas rather than Jesus. (Matthew 27:16-26)

    But in the original text studied by Origen (and in some recent ones) the chosen criminal was Jesus Barabbas - and Bar Abba in Hebrew means "Son of the Father."

    Are we to believe that Pilate had a Jesus, Son of God and a Jesus, Son of Father at the same time?

  • Euphemism

    Interesting! To my understanding, the name Yeshua was common enough that it would not have actually been that great a coincidence. However, the name 'Son of the Father' does sound more like an allegorical than an actual historical name; anyone know any more about this?

  • DevonMcBride
    To my understanding, the name Yeshua was common enough that it would not have actually been that great a coincidence.

    There were other Yeshua's crucified also.

    Jesus ben Stada was a Judean agitator who gave the Romans a headache in the early years of the second century. He met his end in the town of Lydda (twenty five miles from Jerusalem) at the hands of a Roman crucifixion crew. And given the scale that Roman retribution could reach ? at the height of the siege of Jerusalem the Romans were crucifying upwards of five hundred captives a day before the city walls ? dead heroes called Jesus would (quite literally) have been thick on the ground. Not one merits a full-stop in the great universal history.

  • gumby
    gumby's some more info from that site.

    The archetypal Jewish hero was Joshua (the successor of Moses) otherwise known as Yeshua ben Nun (?Jesus of the fish?). Since the name Jesus (Yeshua or Yeshu in Hebrew, Ioshu in Greek, source of the English spelling) originally was a title (meaning ?saviour?, derived from ?Yahweh Saves?) probably every band in the Jewish resistance had its own hero figure sporting this moniker, among others.

    Josephus, the first century Jewish historian mentions no fewer than nineteen different Yeshuas/Jesii, about half of them contemporaries of the supposed Christ! In his Antiquities, of the twenty-eight high priests who held office from the reign of Herod the Great to the fall of the Temple, no fewer than four bore the name Jesus.


  • Balsam

    Josephus mentions these rebellious Jesus's being put to death because they were trouble makers for the Romans. With the Jesus of the bible overturning tables in the temple he certainly fell in that catagory. He was a rebel and put to death for it.

  • Narkissos

    There is an impressive concentration of doubt-generating (at least for modern readers) details in Matthew's Passion and Resurrection narratives and I often wondered why (I really have no answer).

    In addition to Jesus (special to some manuscripts of Matthew) Barabbas, one could mention the role of Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross (27:32ff, from Mark, with some ambiguity on the subject of the crucifixion in the next verses), the incredible general resurrection story at the moment of Jesus' death (v. 52f, special to Matthew), the suggestion that Jesus' body was stolen (v. 62ff; 28:11-15, special to Matthew) and the mention that "some doubted" at Jesus' apparition in Galilee (28:17, special to Matthew). Strange, isn't it?

  • Terry

    Jesus had a twin brother. One died and the other took his place as the resurrected one.

    Hear that Hollywood?


  • peacefulpete

    I've read a few theories about jesus barabbas. It seems reasonable that the sources and legends Mark has drawn from included those traditions wherein Jesus was not hated by the Jewish authorites but was arrested and killed for insurrection, however Mark and later Matt and Luke had agendas that involved villifying the various Jewish sectarian leaders. If this was the case then possibly the trial scene has been formulated to include some of these traditions yet use them in a bastardized way. Perhaps the Jews admired the Jesus character for his political ambitions in now lost sources and called for his release, hence the Jesus Barabbas detail and the charges Pilate accused him of. Thus the stories as we have them are composites of diverse legends sewn piecemeal by a clever writer (who may have been drafting a script for theatrical performance).

    Maccoby suggests that Mark or Matt used the scene of TWO men involved, one released, one killed, to parallel the Attonement day ritual of two goats one killed for sins the other released.

  • Leolaia

    Narkissos....Don't forget about Matthew's unique reference to Pilate's wife's dream (27:19; cf. kat' onar "in a dream" elsewhere in Matthew 1:20, 2:12, 13, 19, 22), and Judas Iscariot's repentence and suicide (Matthew 27:3-10; the Lukan story in Acts 1:15-20 is independent and highly divergent).

  • peacefulpete

    I should have made it more clear that both Jesuses were charged with insurrection (mark 15:2-4) and (15:7)

    Also the idea that there existed a tradition that the militant Romans would release an insurrectionist on the Passover is complete fiction to accomodate the story.

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