The 'Son of Man' Prophesy
"[...] during the time of ungodliness until the appearance of the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel [...]"--Damascus document 12.23-13.1. "My children, be obedient to Levi and to Judah. Do not exalt yourselves about these two tribes because from them will arise the Savior from God. For the Lord will raise up from Levi someone as a high-priest and from Judah someone as king. He will save all the gentiles and the tribe of Israel."--Testament of Simeon 7.1-2. "And the star is the seeker of the law, who came to Damascus; as it is written A star has journeyed out of Jacob and a scepter is risen out of Israel. The scepter is the Prince of the whole congregation, and at his coming he will break down all the sons of Seth."--Damascus document 7.18-21
After the death of the Teacher, rumors began to spread among the Essene community that the Teacher would return, in 30-40 years, as the 'Son of Man' to gain revenge against the Jews for his brutal death. But, by 25 CE the arrival of the Essene Messiah was a half century overdue. It was during this time frame that the new Elijah, John the Baptist was active in the vicinity of the Jordan River. It was also during this waiting period that first the Zealots and later the Sicarii rose up probably out of the Essene community who had lost patience waiting for their Messiah. This brings us to the Christian scriptures. Remember, everything that we know about Jesus and Paul, for that matter, come only from religious writings. The only other first century mentions of either Jesus or the Christians come after the first gospels had already been composed. So, Jesus says whatever it is that the authors want him to say and does whatever it is that the authors want him to do. The original gospels were not intended to represent 4 independent eye witness accounts, but different stages in the life of the savior. So, first we will have to establish when the gospels were written.

Lack of historical corroboration of the gospel stories creates an interesting conundrum. If the gospels are accurate then why would the Christians have burnt so many ancient manuscripts. On the other hand, if there were no such individuals as Jesus and Paul then there would have been no manuscripts to burn. Therefore, whatever was written and committed to the flames must have contradicted what is written in the scriptures.

It is commonly agreed that the gospels were written, but not attributed to any author in particular starting with Mark c 70 CE, then Matthew 85-95 CE, then Luke 90-100 CE and finally John 90-120 CE. However, as I will expalin later, only portions of these gospels were actually written during this time frame. The mid second century writings of Justin Martyr support this hypothesis. Justin quotes freely from the Synoptics without attributions, yet he knows nothing of the Gospel of John. This seems to indicate that John was not written until the second century and was not in circulation during the life of Justin. It was Irenaeus, the Bishop of
St. John the Baptist
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Lyon, who was the first to introduce the attributted gospels in 185 CE, in book II, chapter xxii of "Adversus Haereses" stating that: "It is not possible that the Gospels be either more or fewer than they are. For since there are four zones of the world in which we live, and four principal winds, while the Church is scattered throughout the world....and the pillar and ground of the Church is the Gospel. ... it is fitting that we should have four pillars, breathing out immortality on every side and vivifying our flesh. ... The living creatures are quadriform, and the Gospel is quadriform, as is also the course followed by our Lord”!–Catholic Encyclopedia. The placement of the gospels in the book strongly suggest that these gospels were not available at an earlier date.

These gospel accounts went pretty much unchallenged, at least by members of the Orthodox Catholic faith until the middle of the 19th century when German theologian, philosopher, Bruno Bauer suspected the gospels were a Greco-Roman Romance. However, the story actually goes beyond what you find in your Bible. To fully understand the entire plot you also have to go to the source material; the Gnostic literature of the Nazoreans and the writings of Josephus. According to the Synoptics, which are the only gospels which deal with a real live flesh and blood person, Jesus claims to be both the Christ and the Messiah on different ocassions, but only to the Apostles, and the authorities in private and only within a few days of the crucifixion. To better understand the events in the gospels, it is important to realize that there exist other writings from Gnostic sources which when incorporated into the picture do complete a Romantic tale.

Continued Table of Contents