Hyam Maccoby. The Myth-Maker, Paul and the Invention of Christianity Maccoby concludes that Paul cannot have been a Pharisee, that his claims are. circles (the later successors of the Nazarenes) from the second to the fourth centuries. * Hyam Maccoby. The Mythmaker: Paul and the Invention of Christianity. Donor challenge: Your generous donation will be matched 2-to-1 right now. Your $5 becomes $15! Dear Internet Archive Supporter,. I ask only.

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Hyram Maccoby, The Myth-Maker

How scholarly he actually is, is revealed in that most chapters have fewer than a dozen footnotes, and in that he feels he can refutek the likes of Davies, Sanders and Klausner with a single chapter of only 10 to 12 pages. His particular Jewish perspective on Jesus, Paul and earliest Christianity was a revelation. The is no debate, excepting, of course, biblical inerrancists who stand outside of any scholarly pale, that Christianity as we think of it bears little resemblance to what Jesus and his brothers and the later Ebionites believed.

His misogynistic teachings and dogmatic approach to the system of philosophy created by Jesus would undoubtedly cause that good man to shudder and be shamed. Still even here, Maccoby is on fairly solid ground among modern academic scholars of early Christianity.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. For a Gnostic to admit that something in this world was beautiful would be the same as saying God had done something right, which yyam have been from their point of view a monstrous sin.

This book helps me better understand the underpinnings of the Christian mytjmaker and the dominance of the Apostle Paul in creation of Christian dogma.

Uyam if Paul says “angels ordained the law” with the meaning “Yahweh ordained the law,” is ham not factual?

The Mythmaker: Paul and the Invention of Christianity

I do not know who wrote this and have been unable to trace it. Jesus was transported to the highest pinnacle of the Temple and invited to jump off, with the assurance that since he had such great faith he could not possibly come to harm. As someone who grew up resenting Paul for his misogynistic views, I was happy to read this. Jewish influences on early Christianity “Some scholars speak of Paul as the second, or sometimes even the only, founder of Christianity.


The Pharisees, as noted, were sympathetic to Jesus and, like him, were religious nationalists. Unfortunately for Jesus, his calculations about himself and God’s performance of a miracle were wrong, and the Romans crucified him as a rebel. Though this is certainly no great challenge to the rabbi’s knowledge, Paul goes on to state the principle once more, to make sure we get it right.

We know this because the gospel he preached was totally different, bearing no relationship whatsoever to the life and teachings of Jesus. Maccoby claims that Paul, in a brilliant, epochal move, fused elements of Gnosticism and the mystery cults with Judaic rationalism and historicism. This he rejects, citing the Torah that God alone is the source of life. Paul invented the doctrine of the Cross, along with the story of the Last Supper and associated doctrine of the Body of Christ. Maccoby cites four examples of this method from Paul; let’s look at them, all from Romans: His works cited list is impressive, but a little digging makes me wonder how much he actually uses his sources at all.

But Paul was not such a person. Other topics of Maccoby’s scholarship include the Talmudic tradition and the history of the Jewish religion. One evidence of Paul’s rabbinic background is that he uses a typical rabbinic exegetical method called qal va-homer – or “light and heavy”.

One of the main focuses I really enjoyed this book, but I think that there are many people who would not.

Mar 03, Shiva Seven rated it liked it. He does this in one instance by noting the story of Jesus healing on the Sabbath. Hmm, looks kinda like the world is in the same shape as someone “under law,” doesn’t it?

He does not want us to be in any way subject to “that which Scripture has locked all up under,” he wants us to be subject to “righteousness” instead.

It is commonly defined as the disobedience of God. What is really happening here is revealed in part by the tribute Maccoby offers to those who funded his work – The Centre for the Study of Anti-Semitism. One suspects that healing was permitted for lifesaving medical treatment; but that was not what Jesus was up to; the man in the story was not in deadly peril. It is a very well-written and accessible book – Maccoby specifically states in the text that he wrote it for the layman and that he jythmaker a more byam work subsequent to this one, which I plan to seek out.


With shades of Fricke on the trial narrative, Maccoby rejects the account of Stephen’s martyrdom, mthmaker that the “Sanhedrin was a dignified body that had rules of procedure, and did not act like a lynch mob. Should be of interest to everyone concerned about the historical reality behind the Bible, Biblical-era Judaism, and Paul’s corruption of the life of Jesus and his relationships with the Pharisees, to birth a corrupted Pauline church macocby destroy the “Jerusalem Church,” which was the original Jewish “church of the apostles” and the utopian political movement for which Jesus was both a prophet and messiah political leader.

It is impossible to read the New Testament and take Paul seriously after finishing this. Paul came to present Jesus as a dying and rising saviour deity similar to those from the Hellenistic mystery cults, fused with the historical pedigree of Judaism, thus giving birth to a powerful new myth whose preaching gained him a large following.

In retirement he moved to Leedswhere he held an academic position at the Centre for Jewish Studies, University of Leeds.

The contradictions are particularly acute with regard to the “law,” or Torah: They were seriously annoyed when the tart Paul began misrepresenting Jesus far and wide in order to build up a personal following and launch a new cult.

None of them were part of the apostles’ notions about Jesus or Jesus’ place in the scheme of things; so it really wasn’t Jesus who was being tempted, but Christendom; and Christendom mostly flunked. Paul, Student of the Rabbis?