Christians go to church, read the bible, but mistakenly believe this religion was founded by Jesus Christ. Our church religion is called “Roman” Christianity” because it has to be distinguished from the original “Jewish” Christianity Jesus founded 300 years before Roman Christianity was created by the Romans. These two religions are theologically unrelated.
This is why anthropologists say modern Christians wouldn’t recognize original Christianity. Roman Christianity was founded by Paul, but as the Catholic Encyclopedia acknowledges, “Paul was indifferent to the earthly life and teaching of Jesus Christ.”
Christ had no idea his faith would ever be separated from Judaism or that the Romans would take it over and merge his message with their pagan religion.
If you’re a Christian, wouldn’t you want to know what the original religion of Jesus Christ was?
His faith was so simple, we hardly can recognize it as organized religion today. His commandments were simply that “God is love” and that we “should love and help those who are less fortunate than ourselves.” So for 300 years, Christianity was just a religion of brotherhood and charity. Followers fed the poor and nursed the sick. In our culture it’s difficult to believe the facts about Jewish Christianity when Christ was not the “son of god,” was not virgin born, that there was no Dec. 25th or Easter crucifixion/resurrection, no judgment, Satan or brimstone hell. Just the same, this was all pagan religion added to the faith by the Romans 300 years after Christ. The truth is Christ never had anything to do with all this dogma that we believe as central to our “Roman” Church Christianity today.
The Jewish Encyclopedia says original Christianity had 15 bishops, remained a sect of Judaism, obeyed Jewish law and that Christ remained loyal to Judaism until he died. ”Roman Christianity” was founded by Paul, but was radically altered by Emperor Constantine and his Nicene Council in the 4th century. That was when Roman Christianity was defined, established and consummated. But there’s a fundamental dichotomy between the two Christianities because according to the Catholic Encyclopedia, “Paul was indifferent to the teaching of Christ and the opponent of the religion of love Christ came to announce to the world.”
325 AD was the threshold date between Jewish and Roman Christianities. Historians agree that this date marks the demarcation between the two faiths since before that date, Christianity was a pacifist, oppressed religion, but afterward became the oppressor… oppressive because it condemned all other religions as abominable heresy, forced conversions, inflicted inquisitions of torture, crusader conquest and endless religious wars for Roman Church domination. There simply couldn’t be a more stark contrast than between the two “Christianities.” As we know, the Romans burnt, crucified or threw all Jewish Christians to the lions for 300 years. And untold millions, like Joan of Arc were later burnt alive for another 1000 years as “heretics.” The greatest hypocrisy is that after Rome destroyed Jewish Christianity, they claimed Christ founded “Roman Christianity.”
History tells that Emperor Constantine converted himself and his Roman empire to Christianity in 325 AD and had the church leaders “standardize the dogma and theology.” It’s an expeditious account, but a gross misrepresentation of the facts. The truth is they rubber stamped “Christianity” on their pagan religion that had nothing to do with the teaching of Christ. As evidenced by his statues and monuments, Constantine remained as loyal to his beloved paganism, as Christ did to Judaism.
Constantine’s pagan Mithraism and empire were dying, so he theatrically converted to end chaotic pagan infighting by developing a new, “Christian” state religion. Much of the emperor’s pagan religion was transferred into what became “Roman Christianity.”
Thirty years after Christ, Paul, a Roman orthodox Jew who persecuted and executed Jewish Christians was “thunder struck” on the road to Damascus to become a Christian himself, but by changing it to the context of his orthodox “wrathful god” Judaism. Thus, he established the “justification of faith,” or judgment foundation of Roman Christianity. That became the brimstone motivational “rock upon which the ‘Roman Church’ was built.” Paul “converted,” but his brimstone theology was utterly opposed to the religion of love Christ came to announce to the world.
According to the Jewish Encyclopedia, “Pauline Christianity greatly aided in the Romanizing of the Church. Emperor Constantine completed what Paul had begun—a world hostile to the faith in which Jesus had lived and died.”
The Roman bishops were challenged to create a new religion that included their preferences while respecting the demands of their tyrannical pagan emperor. Touchy, because some voting prelates were assassinated for disagreeing with Constantine. Standardizing the religion was paramount, because there had been no agreement among the churches as to whether or not Christ was just a prophet or the son of god, if he was born of virgin birth, if there was to be a trinity, if they should borrow the Dec. 25 sun god birthday and Easter fertility rites for the resurrection, and if they would adopt Paul’s justification of faith theology with its judgment, Satan/hell scenario.
Ministers preach that Christianity is 2000 years old, but seminary trained clergy know that Christ was not worshipped as the “son of god” the first 300 years. Was that really the same religion? The Nicene Creed summarized the transformed religion according to the Council and they proceeded to publish the bible accordingly.
Early empires and religions typically controlled the masses with an effective culture of fear…The Romans published the bible to reinforce and codify that Roman culture in the religion…
“Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” Matthew 10:34
“I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled! Luke 12:49
“All must come before the judgment seat of Christ.” Corinthians 5:10
Thomas Jefferson said, “The church perverted the purest religion ever preached (by Christ) terrifing the masses for the purpose of gaining wealth and control…” and that “Paul was the first corrupter of the teaching of Christ.” Lincoln agreed saying, “It was inconceivable that a god of love could commit his own children to eternal hell, as the Christians would say.”
How could any of this be “the religion of love Christ came to announce to the world?”
“Seemingly there are two forms of Christianity. One that the historical Christ is said to have taught (love and forgiveness) and one that the Church teaches (guilt, shame and blame)…Roman Christianity has taught that hope and solace are only possible through the redemption from sin by the vicarious sacrificial death of Jesus Christ, for all those who acknowledge His teaching, but it is precisely this form of the doctrine of salvation that rests almost exclusively on the work of Paul, and was never taught by Jesus. (On Guilt, Shame and Blame in Christianity, by the White Robed Monks of Saint Benedict, Catholic)
Jewish Christianity was simply a religion professing that God was unconditional love and that we should love and help those less fortunate than ourselves. Accordingly, early Christians simply lived lives helping the poor and sick, without fearing death because they utterly believed their “god of love” would be waiting with open arms at the end.
Tertullian, a second century historian, said the first 200 years was the most loving era of Christianity. The Romans marveled that Jewish Christians didn’t fear their executions. “When Constantine became Emperor of Rome, he nominally became a Christian…but being a sagacious politician, he sought to blend pagan practices with ‘Christian’ beliefs, to merge paganism with the Roman Church. Roman Christianity was the last great creation of the ancient pagan world.” (www.hope-of-israel.org/cmas1.htm)
A vignette of Christ’s religion of love…
“A Love Without Conditions”
“At no other time in the history of Christianity did love so characterize the entire church as it did in the first three centuries… Tertullian wrote that the Romans would exclaim, ‘See how they love one another!’
Clement, describing the Christians said…‘He impoverishes himself out of love, so that he is certain he may never overlook a brother in need, especially if he knows he can bear poverty better than his brother.’
When a devastating plague swept across the ancient world in the third century … pagans were throwing infected family members into the streets… to protect themselves… while the Christians cared for the sick, at the risk of contracting the plague themselves.”(www.earlychurch.com/unconditio…
This was all that Christianity was. It’s all that Christ intended it to be. Early Christians didn’t risk their lives out of brimstone fear. They were convinced if they gave love, they’d receive love in return. There was no judgment, Satan, hell, “son of god” theology, virgin birth, Easter fertility or Dec. 25 sun god birthday in original Christianity. None of this was the teaching of Christ. Truly, the Jewish Christianity of Jesus was only about love, compassion, charity and brotherhood…Simpler than we can understand…nothing more, nothing less.
Very truly, Brad O’Donnell