Skip to comments.'The Beast' movie: Jesus didn't exist; Former Christian director's secretive film
Posted on 10/12/2004 2:54:10 AM PDT by JohnHuang2
A movie whose purpose is to prove that Jesus Christ never existed and that demonizes Christian fundamentalists is scheduled to open on June 6, 2006 that is, 06-06-06, the "666" biblical mark of the Beast.
Directed by Brian Flemming, who is described on the film's website as a "former fundamentalist Christian," "The Beast" promises to spread the theory he claims is "gaining credibility among scholars" that Jesus was made up out of thin air.
"The authors of the Gospels, writing 40 to 90 years after the supposed life of Christ, never intended for their works to be read as biographies. There are no credible non-Christian references to Christ during the period in which he is said to have lived," states the film's site.
Currently in pre-production, the film's cast and crew are "legally sworn to secrecy," the promotional site says.
Here's how the film's promoters describe its plot:
When her father, a biblical scholar, mysteriously disappears, a Christian high-school student named Danielle investigates. She discovers that he had stumbled across a cover-up of Christianity's best-kept secret: that Jesus Christ never existed.
Now that she possesses proof of this dangerous fact, Danielle must confront two strong forces: a band of fundamentalist Christians who will stop at nothing to suppress the truth, and her own desire for Jesus Christ to be real.
Diving into factual territory well-explored by scholars but largely hidden from the view of the public, "The Beast" is an epic story of innocence lost, faith in crisis and the astonishing power of the truth to survive.
On the trailer, which is viewable on the film's site, ominous music plays while these words flash across the screen: "Centuries ago, a legend was invented forgery fraud coercion wealth greed torture murder war gave it the power to dominate the world." The words are displayed on a background of a painting of Christ's face.
The producers offer a newsletter for those interested in following the making of the movie.
Fleming is touted on the film's website as "internationally acclaimed."
States the site: "Flemming's work has been called 'a parallel universe' by the BBC, 'jaggedly imaginative' by the New York Times, and 'immensely satisfying' by USA Today. The Fox News Channel dubbed him 'a young Oliver Stone.' Flemming won the New York Times Claiborne Pell Award for Original Vision for his groundbreaking feature film 'Nothing So Strange,' which was released theatrically in 2003 and is currently distributed on DVD in more than 200 countries."
Supporters of the film have participated in a discussion forum on the site.
Says one excited poster: "I must say, I highly commend this director for his immense courage on putting something like this out!! The fact that he has the courage to put out a movie about the possibility of Christ never existing after all the controversy surrounding a movie about the LIFE of Christ (well death really) is just amazing!!
"Mad Kudos (and thanks) to EVERYONE involved in the making of this movie and good luck in handling all the 'adverse' reactions!!"
Another participant enthused, "I'm so excited! I can't wait until it's released! This is DEFINITELY the age of Aquarius!!"
Greg Koukl is head of Stand to Reason, a Christian apologetics organization. He says this kind of story line is not unusual among books and movies.
"It always turns out that fundamentalist Christians are the bad guys," he told WorldNetDaily.
"The problem with this is the evidence they draw from is always out on the fringes of academic scholarship" evidence, he says, that is not even used by the leaders of the leftist Jesus Seminar.
Koukl noted historians that have no affinity for fundamentalist Christianity certainly write about Jesus and his impact on history.
"Nobody is trying to explain the indelible mark of Jesus of Nazareth on history by saying he never existed," he said. "That's way beyond the pale. No credible historian would make that claim. It's a bizarre statement from an academic perspective."
Koukl wonders what motive anyone would have to invent Jesus and then "fool everybody."
He dismisses "The Beast" promoters' argument that because no non-Christian accounts of Jesus exist from the time of his life, he must be a fictional character.
"It may be the case that only Caesar wrote about the Gaelic wars," he explained, "but just because there are no other writing about the Gaelic wars doesn't mean we can't trust Caesar," mentioning the four Gospels are themselves four separate accounts of Christ's life.
He mentioned there are a "number of historical references to Christ outside Christianity, which buttress the fact he did exist."
Ted Baehr, founder and publisher of MovieGuide and chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission, predicts "The Beast" will bomb with American moviegoers.
"Generally, these movies do very poorly at the box office," he told WND. "'Saved!' which had a lot of publicity, did about $6 million at the box office. That's pitiful."
Baehr said bringing the film's contentions into the light of day in the media works well to expose the agenda of its promoters.
"The way you pull the teeth of a false argument is bring up the argument first and show that it's frivolous and fallacious," he said. "Of course it's frivolous. The original apostles wouldn't have gone to their death for Jesus if they didn't believe he was real."
Baehr said, "There is a small group of teenagers who will see ['The Beast'] who will be convinced it is the truth. It will have an impact on a susceptible few."
One of the film's producers, Amanda Jackson, was contacted for this story but did not respond by press time.
I'm afraid not.
I am a Roman Catholic. My knowledge is faith, I don't need corroboration, that's why it's called faith.
And circular reasoning never convinced anyone. If I were to invent something today, I would include many contemporary events into the narrative, that is hardly proof that the "invented" part is real.
Let's not get silly.
You have a point--ridiculing is a lot more fun than just ignoring. And nobody does that better than the cruelly inventive people who post on this site. Gotta love it. ;)
If the vatican was as evil as Anti Catholics made it to be, then they would have destroyed those documents...
It's like the argument that Bush deliberately "lied" about WMD...if he was as evil as they claimed he was, he would have planted WMD...heck, at the time of the invasion, they were claiming he planned to "plant" WMD...
Catholics have a long varied history...but remember, most of the classical books you read were copied and kept in monasteries. Catholics figure that the truth should be pursued because God is truth, and we have nothing to hide...which is why many anti Christian documents are still in existence in the Vatican libraries.
thinking that a routine execution of a minor troublemaker in a minor province of a large empire would be noted in the archives of Rome is a bit too much.
One emperor actually examined Christianity by importing some distant relations of Jesus, and found them to be mere peasants. If Jesus didn't exist, how could he have done this?
And Many Romans found the laws persecuting Christians absurd... Suetonius (?Sp) remarked on Nero's torturing of Christians ...Pliny the Younger being told that according to law, he has to prosecute loud mouth Christians, but being instructed not to look too vigorously for them, since they rarely caused trouble...
Don't apply to any Ivy League colleges.
Of course an event like that would spread like wildfire... until it got to the edge of town, where it would come to a grinding halt. Forever. Any further and future mention of the event would appear months or years later, as myth.
You got to remember, brainiac, that the TV transmitters of the time didn't exceed a couple of hundred feet.
To quote Bishop Fulton Sheen:
"Socrates had no one to foretell his birth. Buddah had no one to pre-announce him...Confucius did not have the name of his mother and his birthplace recorded, nor were they given to men centuries before they arrived so that when he did come, men would know he was a messenger from God. But with Christ it was different. Because of the Old Testmanet prophecies, His coming was not unexpected. There were no predictions about Buddah, Confucius, Lao-Tze, Mohammad, or anyone else. Others just came and said, "Here I am, believe me." Christ alone stepped out of that line, saying, "Search the writings of the Jewish people, and the related history of the Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans..."
"Turn to pagan testimony. Tacitus, speaking for the ancient Romans, says, 'People were generally persuaded in the faith of the ancient prophecies, the the East was to prevail, and that from Judea was to come the Master and Ruler of the world.' Suetonius, in his account of the life of Vespasian, recounts the Roman tradition thus, 'It was an old and constant belief through the East, that by indubitably certain prophecies, the Jews were to attain the highest power."
"The Greeks expected Him, for Aeschylus in his 'Promytheus' six centuries before His coming wrote, 'Look not for any end, moreover, to this curse until God appears, to accept upon His Head the pangs of thy own sins vicarious.'
"Cicero, after recounting the sayings of the ancient oracles and the Sibyls about a "King whom we must recognize to be saved," asked in expectation, "To what man and what period of time do these predictions point?' The Fourth Ecologue of Virgil recounted the same ancient tradition and spoke of a 'chaste woman, smiling on her infant boy, with whom the iron age would pass away.'"
"Suetonius quoted a contemporary author to the effect that the Romans were so fearful of a king who would rule the world that they ordered all children born that year to be killed - an order that was not fulfilled, except by Herod."
"...Every other person who ever came into this world came into it to live. He came into it to die. Death was a stumblig block to Socrates - it interrupted his teaching. But to Christ, death was the goal and fulfillment of His life, the gold that He was seeking..."
This is going to hurt the stores during Christmas season.
Aaah! They found out!
Now we'll have to kill them all!!!!!
< /sheesh >
I'm not accusing Catholics of being evil.
But I have always believed that if we really knew the truth about all things, it would be quite a different than what we have been taught and normally believe.
Oh, my point wasn't that resurrection proves that Christ was God. The person I was replying to was stating that the lack of records in the works of official historians was proof that Christianity was a hoax. I was merely explaining that rumors did not travel quickly in those times and thus it was not a sign one way or another.
One ought not to believe merely because of miracles, but rather because of who Christ is. The miracles are all window dressing.
Nice post. Good historical detail from non-Jewish sources.
The Roman Historian Suetonius also mentions him.
You don't really believe that epistemological feces, do you?
I grew up under the shadow of The Bomb, when all the "reliable" "Biblical" "teachers" knew for certain that antichrist would rise to power on the shoulders of global soviet communism.
Yet in 1988, the soviet empire fell, without the first H-bomb incinerating Moscow or New York.
Rather than glorifying God for His soveriegn mercies,and His victories over His self-avowed enemies, the contemptible defeatist wimps immediately began looking for another "invincible" foe to cringe before.
I know a Korean pastor who's seeing thousands of Mongolians coming to Christ. Who's in touch with the "back to Jerusalem" movement (Chinese Christians studying Arabic).
You call upon Christians everywhere to boldly tuck their heads between their legs and kiss their sorry butts goodbye. You would be wiser to recall Numbers 14, and the curse of God that rested upon the cowardly, fearful, and unbelieving doomsayers of that generation.
I really would advise against holding God's power, mercies, blessings, and deliverance in contempt the way you just did. The God who took down communism has plans for Islam -- and plans for those who undercut His people with their stupid fear mongering.
Josephus was born in 37 AD, After Jesus
You are the classic example why I avoid the religious threads like the plague!
Juvenile circular reasoning reigns supreme. Ah... ignorance.
The chattering class just love this film even before they see it. It is anti-Jesus (anti-Christ), and that is enough for them to love it. Can you imagine the outrage if there were a movie that said the same thing about Muhammad? The same people who praise the anti-Jesus film as the greatest accomplishment of all time would demand the beheading of whoever was behind the anti-Muhammad film. And yet these are secularists who claim to have outgrown religion. If they were truly religiously agnostic they would approve of the film that tries to debunk the Christ story and they would equally approve of a film that tries to debunk Muhammadism. Instead they are always against Christianity and yet they instinctively side with "fundamentalists" of Islam.
Seriesly! Personally, I'm quite tired after the last batch!
Al-Queda has nothing on us...
(and it is quite telling that they wouldn't DARE make a movie insinuating Muhammad never existed and that a group of fundamentalist Muslims would track down and kill someone who discovered such a "fact"...)
I hate when people beat me to my point by 18 seconds.
They never have a good reason for explaining why the church fathers would allow themselves to be burnt at the stake and fed to lions for a "lie".
These anti-Christian people are creepy, aren't they?
Should I cash in my 401(k)?
Would be interesting to see a list of who actually paid for the "film" to be made. Who would support such hateful bs? Hmmmmmmmmmm.
That's why you should support the space program.
I'm trying to get to Mars, myself. ^^
Hey, I thought the biggest bomb in Hollywood history was that Gigli movie.
Heh, if we can talk them into putting Shaq and J-Lo in it, it'll be a dud for sure. :D
Blimey. Good post Rutles. That's a keeper.
There's nothing that conflicts with the Catholic doctrine. The documents which may be hidden may not be flattering to the administering of the faith in episodes over time, but there is nothing there to contradict what the Church teaches. The biggest hurdle for non-Catholics to clear is the notion that because the Catholic Church declares it bears the totality of Christian faith, it must mean that those who are in power are endowed with infallible judgment outside of matters of the faith. They are not. They are human beings who commit sins and have hurt the flock and betrayed Christ and corrupted their office and politicized their ministries, etc. Welcome to the real world.
However, the fruit of Catholicism embodies in the Apostles, the Church fathers, the holy and benevolent popes throughout history, the heroic sacrifices of the saints and early Catholics in Rome, the countless supernatural miracles, the artistic Renaissance, the evangelization of the New World, and the turning back of Islam from the shores of Europe all point to the goodness that resides in Catholicism. These are the works of God, not men.
Whatever scandals may come, it does not supercede the grace and majesty of the faith. Would certain things disappoint me? Sure. But I guarantee you there's nothing in there that says Mary Magdalene was a soccer mom for the sons and daughters of Christ.
Not to mention that the Latin roots of the words "testament" and "testify" tell what would happen to someone who intentionally lied about something important.
They would be "de-tested".
And that doesn't mean disliked.
...OR that BILL CLINTON never existed!
Bring out the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch!
Oh, NOW you're getting us into real trouble!
Mr. Fleming thinks that he's watching the game, controlling it. But in reality, it's the other way around. He's got a tiger by the tail. God help him.
The Roman Historian Tacitus...in one of the 4 surviving volumes of his18 volume Histories...wrote of the founder of Christianity..."Christos". He describes his as about 5'9" tall and weighing about 175 pounds having long brown hair styled in the way of the Jewish males of the time. His eyes were said to be bluish grey! He was otherwise of ordinary appearance. Tacitus had traveled thru the known world and had gathered much info about all sorts of things including the known religious impulses of the era. He was said to have visited Mary, Jesus' mother! The Histories were published around 70 to 80 AD though Tacitus was a much younger man at the time of his travels!
I would just assume trust Tacitus who at least claimed to have spoken with some witnesses of the times!
As a result, three schools of thought have developed:
1) That the entire passage was invented by later scribes--unlikely, IMHO, since we should have some copies that weren't tainted if this was the case.
2) That the passage is genuine, but Josephus was being sarcastic when he wrote it--distinctly possible, given the man's personality.
3) That the passage is genuine, but later scribes added some interpolations. This seems to me to be the most likely, since the Arabic copies of Josephus' work have the passage, but minus the most questionable material.
In any case, as the other poster pointed out, even if one disputes this passage, there is a second that refers to "James, the brother of the so-called Christ" as the leader of the Church in Jerusalem.
There are also some other references in secular history, including one of the strange darkness that occured at Jesus' death. If you're interested, I'll dig them up when I get home.
I refer to it as religious philosophy because I believe that was their intent. The Gospels were written down to aid in spreading the word, not to give a history lesson.
I can not understand why some get all up in arms when the term philosophy is used in connection to religion. What would Christianity be worth if it contained no guidance on how to live, or the meaning of life? In no way does the term philosophy denigrate religion.
Good Point Aquinas.
+ God bless Mr Fleming, guard him from evil and touch his heart. Amen. +
We know Clintoon existed. We have the dress!
Then who is it that I talk to every morning and who talks to me???? Who is it that has delivered me over and over again? Who made the sun and the moon and stars that show forth their light upon the earth? HOW GREAT IS THEIR DARKNESS.
Very interesting, the war is heating up. A movie cannot change the truth. Amen.
I guess it all depends on what the meaning of "was" is.
You guys ...
...is a waste of good electricity.
If you want on the list, FReepmail me. This IS a high-volume PING list...
2. If Jesus was not the Son of the Living God (not to mention, God himself), then He was the greatest charlatan of all history, a man of deception, cunning, and evil.
How would it imply that The Christ Himself was the greatest charlatan of all history, a man of deception, cunning, and evil? From everything I have read, he was generally a kind and considerate personage. Is He responsible for the actions of those who came later?
Yes, centuries from now when scholarship will have concluded that NOBODY could have been stupid enough voluntarily to elect such a creature to high office TWICE, that dress will be put to carbon testing and DNA, and will...
...I have to stop.
I'd be curious to know where the money funding this abomination is coming from.
"Mr. Fleming thinks that he's watching the game, controlling it. But in reality, it's the other way around. He's got a tiger by the tail. God help him."
God won't help deciples of the beast. He'll allow the beast to devour them whole. As it should be. How else do you think the fire gets fed, with lost and traded(bought) souls. As in nature, life has and will always be about balance.
This is true.
This is false.
Books XII-XX, in which he speaks of the times preceding the coming of Christ and the foundation of Christianity, are our only sources for many historical events. In these the value of the statements is enhanced by the insertion of dates which are otherwise wanting, and by the citation of authentic documents which confirm and supplement the Biblical narrative. The story of Herod the Great is contained in books XV-XVII. Book XVIII contains in chapter iii the celebrated passage in which mention is made of the Redeemer in the following words:
About this time lived Jesus, a man full of wisdom, if indeed one may call Him a man. For He was the doer of incredible things, and the teacher of such as gladly received the truth. He thus attracted to Himself many Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ. On the accusation of the leading men of our people, Pilate condemned Him to death upon the cross; nevertheless those who had previously loved Him still remained faithful to Him. For on the third day He again appeared to them living, just as, in addition to a thousand other marvellous things, prophets sent by God had foretold. And to the present day the race of those who call themselves Christians after Him has not ceased.
You only need to listen to a Kerry rally inside a black church to hear that he's battling against demons (Bush supporters).
That "spurious" chapter in history will be followed by the doubts that the same party that produced one mythical creature produced another with "spurious" claims to medals, a spurious visit to Cambodia at Christmas time, traitorous meetings with enemies in a time of war, and who actively undermined the effectiveness of our troops through protests, all the while claiming THIS candidate was America's best hope for the future.
Looking back, if you can believe THAT happened, you can believe anything. ;-)