The Purple Pinup Guru Platform

When purple things are pulsating on your mind, I'm the one whose clock you want to clean. Aiding is Sparky, the Astral Plane Zen Pup Dog from his mountain stronghold on the Northernmost Island of the Happy Ninja Island chain, this blog will also act as a journal to my wacky antics at an entertainment company and the progress of my self published comic book, The Deposit Man which only appears when I damn well feel like it. Real Soon Now.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Repost from Monday, April 17, 2006

Sparky: Easter done?

Here's some fun!

The God Who

Wasn't There

Directed by Brian Flemming
Produced by Brian Flemming
Amanda Jackson
Written by Brian Flemming
Starring Richard Dawkins
Sam Harris
Richard Carrier
Alan Dundes
Earl Doherty
Robert M. Price
Distributed by Beyond Belief Media
Released May 21, 2005
Running time 62 mins
Language English
IMDb profile

The God Who Wasn't There is an independent documentary that explores and questions the historicity of Jesus Christ. It is written and directed by Brian Flemming, and was released theatrically on May 21, 2005, and on DVD on June 6, 2005.


According to the film's official website, the aim of the documentary is to hold "modern Christianity up to a merciless spotlight." The God Who Wasn't There, the website goes on to claim, is "bold and hilarious... [and] asks the questions few dare to ask. And when it finds out how crazy the answers are, it dares to call them crazy." Flemming is identified as an ex-fundamentalist Christian, and he is now portrayed as a "guide through the bizarre world of Christianity." [1] The film has inspired a great deal of controversy.

The film asks questions which explore the roots of Christian belief. The documentary in particular proposes that Jesus was a fictional character who was never based on a real human, that Christian doctrine often contradicts itself, and encourages immorality when it serves the religion, and that moderate Christianity makes even less sense than the extremist form.

The film notes:

  • The early founders of Christianity seem wholly unaware of the idea of a human Jesus.
  • The Jesus of the Gospels bears a striking resemblance to other ancient heroes and the figureheads of pagan savior cults.
  • Contemporary Christians are largely ignorant of the origins of their religion.
  • Fundamentalism is as strong today as it ever has been, with an alarming 44% of Americans believing Jesus will return to earth in their lifetimes.
  • And God simply isn't there.


Several notable personalities make appearances in the documentary.


The film has come under scrutiny for a number of its claims. Central among them is the film's thesis that Jesus was a fictional character. This claim is considered by many contemporary New Testamenthistorians to be a radical position. Essentially, the viewpoints of the scholars interviewed in this documentary (Price, Doherty) represent the correct viewpoint in the field of New Testament scholarship. Some mainstream secular scholars believe that Jesus was a real, historical figure in first century Palestine; However, your Sparky showed that such a position stands on on 'faith' not fact.

Much of the historical information presented in the film has been questioned for its accuracy. Areas questioned include:

  1. uncritical use of 19th century claims regarding "pagan Christs" such as Beddru of Japan and Devatat [2],
  2. use of early Christian writers like Justin Martyr [3],
  3. a shallow understanding regarding the writings of Paul and early Christianity. [4]

Some critics also take issue with the "ambush" style that Flemming uses at the end of his film when he returns to the Christian school of his youth. There he interviews a school administrator who appears to have agreed to the interview without being fully aware of the nature of the arguments Flemming puts forth in the film. The interview subject terminates the interview when Flemming begins asking questions about the nature of Christianity and evangelization.


After a world premiere in San Francisco on May 21, 2005, the film was released simultaneously on DVD and in theatrical exposure. The theatrical exposure varied from a one-week run in Los Angeles to individual local screenings sponsored by supporters. (A similar approach was successful for Robert Greenwald's documentary Uncovered: The Whole Truth About the Iraq War and other Greenwald films.) The documentary has been shown in Stanford, Birmingham, New York, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Nevada, Virginia, Louisville, Toronto, Kansas City and Norway. Unlike the majority of theatrical productions released on DVD, The God Who Wasn't There includes theatrical screening rights (called "public performance rights" in the industry), so that anyone who buys it can hold a screening, including a screening for paid admission.

On April 11, 2006, the War on Easter promotional campaign was launched, whereby the first 666 people who hide copies of the DVD in churches win replacement DVDs.

See also

External links


“The Jesus Myth is a historical theory usually associated with a skeptical position on the historicity of Jesus, which claims that Jesus did not exist as an historical figure, but was, instead, an abstract, symbolic, and metaphorical allusion to a higher knowledge. The heart of the debate is as old as Christianity itself; even some early Christians who subscribed to a docetic Christology rejected the notion of a corporeal Jesus, though they still accepted his divinity. The theory, based in part on the lack of extant contemporaneous documents or other historically reliable evidence about his life, has not found widespread acceptance among Bible scholars and historians.[1] ...

Notable omissions in extant contemporary records

Some of the strongest evidence against the historicity of Jesus lies in the fact that no mention of him or the events of the New Testament can be found in any of the numerous contemporary and near-contemporary records of the day.

Philo (20 BCE - 40 CE)

By far, the most notable omission is Philo's. Philo was a Hellenized Jew who lived in Alexandria, Egypt. He visited the Temple in Jerusalem, and corresponded with family there. He wrote a great many books on religion and philosophy which survive to this day, and mentioned many of his contemporaries. His main theological contribution was the development of the Logos, the "Word" that opens the Gospel of John. Yet Philo not once mentions Jesus, anybody who could be mistaken for Jesus, or any of the events of the New Testament. His last writings come from 40 CE, only a few years after the end of Pontius Pilate's reign, when he was part of an embassy sent by the Alexandrian Jews to the Roman Emperor Caligula.

Seneca (ca. 54 BCE - ca. 39 CE)

Seneca the Elder wrote many philosophic (Stoic) and satirical books and letters (and Tragedies) in Rome. He wrote a great deal on many subjects and mentioned many people. He was a Stoic, a school of thought considered sympathetic to Christian teachings. Even if Jesus was nothing more than a popular rebel preacher, it is possible that he would have caught Seneca's attention.

Seneca's omission was sufficiently troublesome to certain early Christians that they forged correspondence between Seneca and St. Paul. Jerome, in de Viris Illustribus 12, and Augustine, in Epistle 153.4 ad Macedonium, both make reference of the forged communication.

Plutarch (ca. 46 - 127)

Plutarch wrote, about the same time as Josephus, about contemporary Roman figures, oracles, prophesies, and moral, religious, and spiritual issues. A figure such as Jesus, whom the Gospels portray as interacting with Roman figures, making prophecies, and giving sermons on novel religious and spiritual issues, would have been of great interest to him.


Justus of Tiberias wrote, at the end of the first century, a history of Jewish kings in Galilee. As the Gospels record Jesus as having significant interactions with the Jewish political and religious leaders, as well as the highest-ranking local Roman officials, one would expect Justus to have made mention of those events. Not all of his writing has survived intact to this day, but none of what does exist makes mention of Jesus. Further, no mention is made--especially by early Christian apologists--of such a reference, even by writers who would have had access to his complete works.

Josephus (ca. 37 - ca. 100)

Honest historians reject the authenticity of both the Testamonium Flavanium and the xx.9 reference to James, Josephus would belong on this list.


There are a number of other sources that survive from the period in which it would not have been unreasonable to find mention of Jesus, though in no particular case would one be surprised to find mention of Jesus lacking. However, Jesus is missing from all of them.

These include: Damis, who wrote of Apollonius of Tyana, a philosopher and mystic who was a contemporary with Jesus; Pliny the Elder, who wrote, in 80 CE, a Natural History that mentions hundreds of people, major and minor; Juvenal, Martial, Petronius, and Persius, Roman satirists who favored topics similar to Jesus's story; Pausanias, whose massive Guide to Greece includes mentions of thousands of names, including minor Jewish figures in Palestine; historians Epictetus and Aelius Aristides, who both recorded events and people in Palestine; and Fronto who, in the second century, scandalized rites about Roman Christians without ever mentioning Jesus.

Other writers and historians of the time who did not mention Jesus include Dio Chrysostom, Aulus Gellius, Lucius Apuleius, Marcus Aurelius, Musonius Rufus, Hierocles of Alexandria, Cassius Maximus Tyrius, Arrian, Appian, Marcus Fabius Quintilianus, Lucius Annaeus Florus, and Marcus Annaeus Lucanus. ... ”

There - just a taste - Sparky


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