The Christ myth - (1911) pdf by Arthur Drews

The Christ myth by Arthur Drews


The Christ myth by Arthur Drews
The Christ myth by Arthur Drews


Content of the book:
The pre-Christian Jesus. - The Christian Jesus. - The religious problem of the present

Since David Frederick Strauss, in his "Life of Jesus," attempted for the first time to trace the Gospel stories and accounts of miracles back to myths and pious fictions, doubts regarding the existence of a historical Jesus have never been lulled to rest. 

Bruno Bauer also in his " Kritik der evangelischen Geschichte und der Synoptiker" (1841-42, 2nd ed. 1846), disputed the historical existence of Jesus; later, in his " Christ und die Casaren, der Ursprung des Christentums aus dem romischen Griechentum" (1877), he attempted to show that the Life of Jesus was a pure invention of the first evangelist, Mark, and to account for the whole Christian religion from the Stoic and Alexandrine culture of the second century, ascribing to Seneca especially a material influence upon the development of the Christian point of view. But it was reserved for the present day, encouraged by the essentially negative results of the so-called critical theology, to take up the subject energetically, and thereby to attain results even bolder and more startling.

The existence of Jesus loses all paradox that hitherto may have attached to it in the eyes of many. So, too, Protestant theology no longer has any grounds for becoming excited if the question is answered in a sense opposed to its own answer.

The author of the present work had hoped until lately that one of the historians of Christianity would himself arise and extract the present results of the criticisms of the Gospel, which today are clear. These hopes have not been fulfilled. On the contrary, in theological circles, religious views continue to be quietly drawn from the "fact" of a historical Jesus, and he is considered as the impassable height in the religious development of the individual, as though nothing has occurred and the existence of such a Jesus was only the more clearly established by the investigations of critical theology in this connection. 

The author has accordingly thought that he should no longer keep back his own views, which he long since arrived at out of the works of specialists, and has taken upon himself the thankless task of bringing together the grounds which tell against the theory of a historical Jesus. Whoever, though not a specialist, invades the province of any science, and ventures to express an opinion opposed to its official representatives must be prepared to be rejected by them with anger, to be accused of a lack of scholarship, "dilettantism," or "want of method," and to be treated as a complete ignoramus. 

This has been the experience of all up to now who, while not theologians, have expressed themselves on the subject of a historical Jesus. The like experience was not spared the author of the present work after the appearance of its first edition. He has been accused of "lack of historical training," "bias," "in- capacity for any real historical way of thinking,"  and it has been held up against him that in his investigations their result was settled beforehand — as if this was not precisely the case with theologians, who write on the subject of a historical Jesus since it is just the task of theology to defend and establish the truth of the New Testament writings. 

Whoever has looked about him in the turmoil of science knows that generally each fellow-worker is accustomed to regard as " method " that only which he himself uses as such, and that the famous conception of " scientific method " is very often ruled by points of view purely casual and personal.


the book details :
  • Author: Arthur Drews
  • Translator: C. Delisle Burns
  • Publication date: 1911
  • Company: Chicago, Open court

  • Download  10.9 MB

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