1 Thessalonians 5:21: “Test everything. Hold on to the good.”
Dear reader, This will be the only verse quoted from the Bible for this entire argument, The reason is clear whether you are a believer an agnostic or a non-believer this is indeed very sound advice. There have recently been a slew of articles posted on the news24 forum that are factually incorrect. I would like to believe that it was only done so by people ignorant of the facts and I hold onto the hope that they did not do it to deliberately deceive anyone that might not be knowledgeable to all the facts, background and history.
I firstly want to make it clear that I did not type up any of the responses; Cut and paste is just too cool not to use. I can however assure you the answers match what the original sources say and I invite you dear reader to confirm so yourself. The article is lengthy but so were the original claims.
I have decided to put forward a counter argument against Russki’s recent article Bible Mistakes - Part 4 - The Pagan traditions of Christians. I will deal with part 3 & 4 in this article and will then pursue and argue against Part 1 & 2. Let us examine Russki’s claims;
Mithra (Iran & Roman)
1) Hundreds of years before Jesus, according to the Mithraism religion, three Wise Men of Persia came to visit the baby saviour-god Mithra, bring him gifts of gold, myrrh and frankincense.
Response: In Mithraism Studies it stated that Mithras was born as an adult from solid rock, "wearing his Phrygian cap, issues forth from the rocky mass. As yet only his bare torso is visible. In each hand he raises aloft a lighted torch and, as an unusual detail, red flames shoot out all around him.
2) Mithra was born on December 25 as told in the “Great Religions of the World”, page 330; “…it was the winter solstice celebrated by ancients as the birthday of Mithraism’s sun god”.
Response: Many religious festivals were consolidated into one holiday to coincide with the winter solstice. Christmas is only celebrated on December 25th due to this tradition. This argument already proves to be insignificant as there is nothing in the Scriptures which mentions this date.
3) According to Mithraism, before Mithra died on a cross, he celebrated a “Last Supper with his twelve disciples, who represented the twelve signs of the zodiac.
Response: Mithras did not have twelve disciples, but I can relate a far-fetched similarity to this allegation. In two of the reliefs to the left, Mithras is surrounded by the twelve signs of the zodiac. Claiming Mithras had twelve disciples because there are twelve signs of the zodiac is the connection critics try to make. The critics simply see twelve beings and claim the figures are disciples. Some go as far to defend their position by mimicking Franz Dumont’s theory, claiming the figures were actually Mithras' twelve disciples dressed up in zodiac costumes! How they can make this connection is unknown as no inscriptions accompany the original reliefs.
4) After the death of Mithra, his body was laid to rest in a rock tomb.
Response: Tough critics claim Mithras was crucified; there is no mention of this in the reliefs or texts. In fact no death is associated with Mithras, nevertheless crucifixion. We are told he completes his earthly mission then is taken to paradise in a chariot- alive and well.
5) Mithra had a celibate priesthood.
Response: I can find no mention in any text or relief showing Mithras to be a traveling teacher. Regardless, it would hardly seem significant as many legends speak of mankind receiving wisdom from their gods.
6) Mithra ascended into heaven during the spring (Passover) equinox (the time when the sun crosses the equator making night and day of equal length).
Response: There is just nothing on this point other than Mithra sites claiming
Let us move onto Part 3 then;
Horus - Egypt (3000 BC)
1) Both Horus and Jesus existed before their incarnations. Horus was born of the virgin Isis on December 25th, in a cave. (Also a humble beginning, like a manger.)
Response: Horus’s mother is Isis. Isis was married to Osiris. We do not know for what length of time, but presumably the marriage was consummated. Whether it was or wasn’t doesn’t matter though. After Osiris is killed, Isis puts him back together again (he was hacked into 14 pieces) except for his penis which was tossed in a river or a lake. Iris fashions a substitute penis for him, humps him and here comes Horus. There is nothing virginal about that.
2) Horus' birth was announced by a star in the East and was attended by three wise men.
Response: Nowhere in the Bible does it say that 3 Weise men visited Jesus. It was also very common in the ancient days to associate a star with a new king.
3) Horus was carried out of Egypt to escape the wrath of Typhon. Jesus was carried into Egypt to escape the wrath of Herod.
Response: Try as I might I can find nothing of this claim, I did however find that Isis fled to the Nile-Delta when she found out that she was pregnant with Horus
4) Horus was a child teacher in the temple and was baptised by Anup the Baptizer when he was 30 years old.
Response: There is nothing in the Book of the dead to indicate that Horus taught when he was a child. There is also not a single mention about him being baptized.
5) Horus had twelve disciples, and performed miracles such as feeding bread to the multitude and walking on water.
Response: According to the Horus accounts, Horus had four semi-gods that were followers. There is some indication of 16 human followers and an unknown number of blacksmiths that went into battle with him. Horus did not have 12 disciples. In in the Book of Hades in which there are twelve reapers. Horus is not present in this scene. There is not a single record that Horus walked on water. It is true both did miracles but certainly not the same ones.
6) Horus raised a man called El-Azar-Us (Lazarus?)
from the dead.
Response: The actual claim is that Horus raised Osiris from the dead and that the name Osiris morphed to Lazarus. It doesn’t matter because Horus did not bring Osiris back to life. There is no mention of this in any document regarding the story. Horus did avenge Osiris’s death, but that did not raise Osiris from the dead.
7) Horus transfigured on a mount.
Response: No transfiguration
8) Horus also had titles like "way, the truth, the light, the Messiah, God's anointed Son, the Son of Man, the good shepherd, the lamb of God, the Word, the Morning Star, the light of the world."
Response: I cannot find any evidence that he was referred to as "The Truth", "The Light", Lamb of God", "the Good Shepherd", etc.
9) Horus was also known as "the Fisher" and was associated with the lamb, lion, and fish.
Response: Some of the conspiracy theorists try to show an association with fish (by virtue of the fact that Horus WAS a fish, very unlike Jesus), but there is no evidence that Horus was ever called a “fisher” or was ever associated with the Lion or the Lamb.
10) Horus's personal epithet was "Iusa," the "ever-becoming son" of "Ptah," the "Father."
Response: He is never referred to as this. Please provide evidence
11) Horus was called "KRST," or "Anointed One".
Response: None of these titles are in Egyptian history, but Horus IS called by several names you might expect for any god in mythology: “Great God”, “Chief of the Powers”, “Master of Heaven”, and “Avenger of His Father”. Horus was also not called “the Krst” because this word in Egyptian means "burial" (it wasn't a title at all).
12) He was crucified, buried in a tomb and resurrected.
Response: Horus never ever died he actually merged with RA, There is no crucifixion no tomb….
13) The adversary of Horus is Set. The adversary of Jesus is Satan.
Response: Try as I might I cannot see what the relevance is about adversaries? Set was the god of the desert…. Horus has to protect Egypt against him.
14) An interesting thing to note is how similar the Ankh of Horus is compared to the cross Christians so gladly wear.
Response: Interesting indeed I have an Egyptian ankh tattoo, however how many different cross styles are there in the world? The Ankh is however not associated to Horus but is the Egyptian symbol of life.
Attis - Greece (1200 BC, Summarised)
1) Born of a virgin. Born on Dec 25th. Crucified. Resurrected after a death of 3 days
Response: DECEMBER 25TH: We've already shown the insignificance of this argument as it relates to Christianity. Furthermore, there is no mention of this date having any relation to Attis- he is associated with the annual return of spring.
VIRGIN BIRTH: According to the legend, Agdistis, a hermaphroditic monster, arises from the earth as a descendant of Zeus. Agdistis gives birth to the Sangarius River which brings forth the nymph, Nana, who either holds an almond to her breast and becomes impregnated by the almond or sits beneath a tree where an almond falls into her lap and impregnates her. Nana later abandons the child who is raised by a goat. We are left to assume Attis was conceived from an almond seed which fell from a tree as a result of Zeus' spilled semen.
CRUCIFIXION: This similarity is completely false. Attis castrates himself beneath a pine tree after he is made to go insane before his wedding by Agdistis when the he-she becomes enamoured with him. His blood flows onto the ground from his severed organ and brings forth a patch of violets. Critics try to associate Attis' death beneath a tree with Jesus' death on a "tree." They also try to connect Jesus' blood pouring from his wounds with Attis' blood flow caused by his auto-castration.
RESURRECTION: In one version, Agdistis is overcome with remorse for her actions and requests Zeus to preserve the beautiful corpse of Attis so it never decomposes. No resurrection occurs for Attis. In another account, Agdistis and The Great Mother (or Cybele) carries the pine tree back to a cave where they both mourn the death of Attis. The resurrection story doesn't surface until much later when Attis is transformed into a pine tree.
Krishna - India (900 BC, Summarised)
1) Born of a virgin. Star present in the east. Performed miracles. Resurrected after death.
Response: A VIRGIN BIRTH: A virgin birth is never attributed to Krishna as his parents bore seven previous children. Furthermore, the virgin birth was not a new concept invented by Christians. The book of Isaiah (written about700 B.C.) spoke of a Messiah who would be born of a virgin. This prophecy was in circulation 700 years before Jesus and at least 100 years before Krishna. (Isaiah 7:14) Critics claim Krishna was born to the virgin Maia but according to Hindu texts; he was the eighth son of Princess Devaki and her husband Vasudeva: "You have been born of the divine Devaki and Vasudeva for the protection of Brahma on earth."
SHEPHERDS, WISEMEN, A STAR, AND A MANGER: No mention of shepherds or wise men appear at Krishna’s birth. Krishna was born in a prison (not a stable as critics suggest) where his parents bore him in secret. It is unlikely such visitors would arrive only to alert Kamsa to Krishna's presence!
THE CRUCIFIXION: Though critics claim Krishna was crucified, this is mentioned nowhere within the Hindu texts. Instead, we are told exactly how he dies: Krishna is mediating in the woods when he is accidentally shot in the foot by a hunter's arrow. Sceptics really try to stretch this one by claiming the arrow that shot Krishna impaled him to a tree, thus crucifying him. They also point out the similarity between his wound being in the foot and Jesus' pierced hands and feet. However, if I was carving my initials into a tree and accidentally impaled my wrist, the idea of saying I was crucified would be absurd. This story relates more to the death of Greek mythology’s Achilles than anything else: "A fierce hunter of the name of Jara then came there, desirous of deer. The hunter, mistaking [Krishna], who was stretched on the earth in high Yoga, for a deer, pierced him at the heel with a shaft and quickly came to that spot for capturing his prey."
THE RESURRECTION: although critics claim Krishna descended into the grave for three days and appeared to many witnesses, no evidence of this exists whatsoever. Instead, the actual account says Krishna immediately returns to life and speaks only to the hunter by forgiving him of his actions: "He [the hunter] touched the feet of [Krishna]. The high-souled one comforted him and then ascended upwards, filling the entire welkin with splendour... [Krishna] reached his own inconceivable region." Some obvious differences between the resurrections of Jesus and Krishna are as follows: Jesus' resurrection defeated the power of sin and death. Krishna's resurrection had no real effect on mankind. Jesus appeared to approximately 500 eye witnesses in the New Testament. Krishna appeared only to the hunter. Jesus rose from the dead three days later. Krishna immediately returned to life. Jesus did not ascend into Heaven until after the Great Commission. Krishna immediately "ascended" into the afterlife. Jesus was aware of what was to take place. Krishna had no foreknowledge concerning his death. Jesus ascended into a physical realm (Heaven). Krishna transcended into a mental state (or inconceivable region). The concepts between Heaven (Christianity) and Nirvana (Hinduism) differ greatly.
Dionysus - Greece (500 BC, Summarised)
1) Born of a virgin. Born on Dec 25th. Performed miracles such as healing the sick and turning water into wine. Was called "the King of Kings" and the "Alpha and Omega". Was resurrected after death.
Response: VIRGIN BIRTH: There are two birth accounts concerning Dionysus (neither implies a virgin birth): Zeus impregnates a mortal woman, Semele, much to the jealously of Hera. Hera convinces Semele to ask Zeus to reveal his glory to her but because no mortal can look upon the gods and live, Semele is instantly incinerated. Zeus then takes the foetal Dionysus and sews him into his own thigh until his birth. Source Dionysus is the product of Zeus and Persephone. Hera becomes insanely jealous and tries to destroy the infant by sending the Titans to kill him. Zeus comes to the rescue but it's too late- the Titans had eaten everything but Dionysus' heart. Zeus then takes the heart and implants it into the womb of Semele. As we can see, no virgin birth takes place but this is how Dionysus is said to have become a rebirth deity as he is twice born in the womb.
WATER INTO WINE: Dionysus was the god of mythology who gave King Midas the power to turn whatever he touched into gold. Likewise, he gave the daughters of King Anius the power to turn whatever they touched into wine, corn, or oil. Considering Dionysus was the god of wine, this should come as no surprise. Regardless, though there are tales where Dionysus supernaturally fills empty vessels with wine, the act of turning water into wine does not occur.
RESURRECTION: The "resurrection" account of Dionysus stems from the tale of him being reborn after his attack by the Titans. As we can see, this has nothing to do with the resurrection story of Jesus. Furthermore, we are told after Dionysus completes teaching his followers his religious rites, he ascends to Mount Olympus to be with the other deities- alive and well. His infant rebirth, like Attis, is symbolic of the vegetation cycle- not the atoning of sin.
SIMILAR TITLES: The following is a list of alleged titles Dionysus is claimed to share with Jesus. Though in the past we have been able to show some obscure similarities, this list is an obvious fabrication: King of Kings. Dionysus was only a semi-deity. Zeus was the head god according to the mythology. Only Begotten Son. Zeus had many relationships with women where he fathered several other children. Alpha and Omega. Dionysus had a distinct beginning to his existence. Lamb of God. Dionysus is associated with a bull, serpent, wine, and ivy, but never as a lamb.
It has been fun, All I ask for in return from sceptics is refute the points with real evidence.
The Egyptian book of the dead - http://www.sacred-texts.com/egy/ebod/index.htm
Mahabharata Bk 12, XLVIII
Mahabharata, Book 16, 4
Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.