jeudi 28 mai 2015

An alternative essay on Jesus, Flavius Josephus, the Essenes and the origins of Christianity: A synopsis of the book Jesus: a Myth with Multiple Sources (in French)

Bannous is a disciple of John the Baptist and the master of Flavius Josephus; he is mentioned as such in his life (3 lines)

Certain verses are incomprehensible; among those, the following one which can be found in Matthew, 3, 8-9 and Luke, 3, 8:
Ποιήσατε οὖν καρπὸν ἄξιον τῆς μετανοίας· καὶ μὴ δόξητε λέγειν ἐν ἑαυτοῖς, Πατέρα ἔχομεν τὸν Ἀβραάμ· λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν, ὅτι δύναται ὁ θεὸς ἐκ τῶν λίθων τούτων ἐγεῖραι τέκνα τῷ Ἀβραάμ. (Matthew 3, 8–9) 
8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. 9 And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham.
Ποιήσατε οὖν καρποὺς ἀξίους τῆς μετανοίας· καὶ μὴ ἄρξησθε λέγειν ἐν ἑαυτοῖς, Πατέρα ἔχομεν τὸν Ἀβραάμ· λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι δύναται ὁ θεὸς ἐκ τῶν λίθων τούτων ἐγεῖραι τέκνα τῷ Ἀβραάμ. (Luke 3, 8)
8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. (common translation)
The problematic words are obviously ‘these stones.’
‘These stones’ says into Aramaic ‘abanayya’  אבניא 
We think that the translator will have read bannayâ בניא and he will not have understood it. He will then have thought of abanayâ ‘these stones’.
But Bannayâ is a name, the name of the master of Flavius Josephus, Bannous. Bannous is not a Jewish name; one can thus suppose that Bannous was a proselyte. Only then does the sentence make sense.

8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. 9 And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of BANNAYÂ God can raise up children for Abraham.

We believe that in a debate with the Pharisees or others, John the Baptist affirms that the descendant of the convert is like the descendant of Abraham. Today, it is the opinion of the synagogue.

This mention is tiny, but it completely changes what one knows about the writing of the Gospels: Flavius Josephus must have taken part in their writing.


In Mark 3, 20–21 and 3, 31–35, Jesus’ family is described as impious; This makes no sense. We believe that this passage could refer to Bannous’ conversion to Judaism, and to his family trying to stop him. What Jesus says is now the profession of faith of a convert.


- The proximity between Bannaya and abnayyâ (these stones) made us understand that the nickname of Bannayâ may have been Peter. It is not possible that two disciples respectively of John the Baptist and of Jesus are called Peter. Bannous is Peter, Simon Kefa was invented to clear Bannous.
- The Clementine literature mentions a Peter who was an Essene and who was not a Christian; we believe he is Bannous.
- The Toldoth Yeshu also mentions a Peter who was not a Christian, we believe it is a memory of Bannous.
- There are other allusions to Bannous: The Ascension of Isaiah could have represented King Herod Agrippa I (who prepared war against Rome) under the name of Hezekiah the Just and his son and successor Herod Agrippa II (who worked with Rome) under the name of Manasseh, who subdued the forces of evil.
- Bannous resided in Alexandria between 38 and 55. He and his followers translated into Greek the Book of Enoch, the Book of Jubilees, the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs and probably other works that are lost to us. He may also have written the Book of Wisdom.
- Bannous is the one called the Egyptian by Flavius Josephus, who led the anti-Roman revolt in the year 55.
- The allusion to the tree branches people welcome Jesus with as he enters Jerusalem prove that this event took place during Sukkot and not during Pesach; James / Bannous was executed during Sukkot 62.
- Judah Iscariot is a fictional character invented by Flavius Josephus to exonerate Bannous of the charge of having been a Sicarius. Judah Iscariot is the son of Simon the Sicarius, who was the son of Judas the Galilean.


Joseph of Arimathea, in Greek Ἰωσὴφ Ἀριμαθαίας
Ἰωσὴφ Ἀριμαθαίας, may be a nickname for Flavius Josephus: Joseph the Lion (ari in hebrew) ben Mathias (Mathaias). Mathias is the name of Flavius Josephus’ father.
But then who was buried by Flavius Josephus? The man must have been executed. The first answer would be James, the brother of Jesus, but the relationships between James and Flavius Josephus are unknown. We believe that the man Flavius Josephus buried is Bannous, and that Bannous (and not James, brother of Christ) was executed by Hanan Ben Hanan in 62.


Jesus was executed a year after John the Baptist. But according to Flavius Josephus, John the Baptist was executed during the second quarter of 36. So Jesus was executed in 37. This is not possible because Caiaphas was removed from the high priesthood in the year 35 (Theophilos ben Hanan became high priest); and Pontius Pilate was dismissed from his functions as prefect of Judea in the year 36 (for not supporting Herod Antipas against Aretas IV of Petra?). Pontius Pilate was not replaced due to the death of Emperor Tiberius.

The Synoptic Gospels and the Gospel of John do not agree on the date of the death of Jesus. For John, he was executed on the day of the Pessach sacrifice, and according to the Synoptic Gospels, on the day after the Pessach sacrifice.


The many problems in the Gospels lead us to believe that they were composed between 130 and 140, and that Jesus is a literary myth. But why?

  • No Jesus, no Christians. 
  • My hypothesis is that Christians are Judaizing disciples of Philo of Alexandria (Logos and bitheism) who wanted to break away from the Sanhedrin of Yavneh, because of their loyalty to the Roman Empire.
  • Jesus is a simplification of the doctrine of the Logos of Philo of Alexandria (Jesus has two natures, as the Logos has two natures; Jesus is the mediator, as the Logos is the mediator; Jesus saves, as the Logos saves). Jesus is the Logos represented in the form of a man (see Daniel)
  • The Jesus Christians believe in is not the Jesus of the Gospels.
  • The real reasons for the break-up between Jews and Christians:
    • Greek Judaizing conversions are invalid in the eyes of the Sanhedrin in Yavneh
    • Hellenistic Judaism was probably patrilineal, while the rabbis are matrilineal. The Sanhedrin of Yavneh rejected numerous people of mixed Judeo-Greek heritage as non-Jews, whereas they were Jews for the Alexandrian Judaism.
  • Tensions between Rabban Gamaliel and Eliezer ben Hyrcanus are probably allusions to tensions within the Sanhedrin in relation to the Judaizers and Judeo-Greeks. Those who supported the break-up followed Rabban Gamaliel and those who called for conciliation followed Eliezer ben Hyrcanus
  • Tensions also existed in the Greek world, but in the other direction: the Paulians represent those who wanted to break away from Yavneh, the Nazarenes or Petrians those who believed that even in spite of the break-up with Yavneh, Christians must remain Jews.
  • Among Judaizers, there also was a trend calling for a complete break-up with Judaism; they were the future Gnostics and followers of Marcion.
  • Menahem cursed by Hillel could be an allusion to Josephus or to his unknown successor. 
  • The Theodore who tried to re-establish the sacrificial cult in Rome is probably Josephus, and his sect is likely to have developed into Christianity.
  • The Testament of Job may have been composed by Bannous or composed in his honour (Bannous may have been from Idumea)
  • The Therapeutae, who Philo of Alexandria said are the Essenes, and therefore the Sicarii. Their master Bannous of Alexandria was probably sent by Agrippa to protect Jewish communities in anticipation of the war against the Romans. 


Flavius Josephus told many lies in his works.
  • He was not a Pharisee, but he claimed the Pharisees (his enemies) were responsible for the Jewish war, thus exonerating the Essenes.
  • The Essenes were Sadducees who left Temple service around 75 BC.
  • Essenes and Sicarii are two names for the same organization.
  • Hezekiah, Judas of Galilee, Sadok, John the Baptist, Bannous and Flavius Josephus were all Essenes and Sicarii, not Pharisee extremists.
  • Flavius Josephus lied to his Roman audience, by saying that the Essenes were peaceful Jewish Pythagoreans, killed by mistake by the Romans.
  • The father of Flavius Josephus must have been the high priest Mattathias ben Theophilos II; Mattathias ben Theophilos I was thus his great-grandfather. The ancestors of Flavius Josephus must be the general of Judas Maccabeus, named Mattathias; his other hidden ancestor is probably Diogenes, the executioner of the Pharisees (the friend of king Alexander Jannaeus, in his works and in the Hymn of Self-Glorification). In the works of Flavius Josephus, all the illustrious men are still priests (qohanim).
  • The names of his ancestors (in his autobiography) are false:
    • “Our patriarch was Simon, who was named Psellus.” (Life) ‘The Stutterer’ is not correct; the translator confused the Hebrew illem (אלם) meaning ‘dumb’, ‘unable to speak’ and by extension ‘stutterer’, not attested in ancient Hebrew, and the word ‘alam (אלם) meaning ‘to be strong’.
    • “Matthias, known as ‘of Epheus’.” Epheus is not correct; it is probably an error from Thî’ôphîlos (תיאופילוס), i.e. “friends of God” (see Hymn, the friends of the king).
    • “Matthias, surnamed Curtus.” Curtus, ‘the Swollen’ (or Hump-Back), etc. is not correct; the translator confused the Hebrew given (גבן), ‘the hump-back’, and the word gibor (גבר), ‘the strong one’ or ‘the mighty one’.
    • In Jewish Antiquities 13, 9, 2, he mentions Simon, son of Dositheus, who was sent on a mission to Rome; this must be Simon ha’alam (Fort). Dositheus is the Greek translation of Mathithiyahû. He was probably the general of Judas Maccabee. (2 Maccabees, 12, 15–26)
    • In Jewish Antiquities 17, 6, 4, he mentions the dream that caused a pollutio nocturna, which prevented high priest Mattathias ben Theophilos the Elder to worship one day. He was replaced by one of his family, Joseph son of Ellemos. Ellemos has no meaning. We think it is a transcription Alam (Strong), the nickname in use in his family. Joseph son of Ellemos must be the grandfather of Flavius Josephus.
    • Diogenos is probably a false name for Mathathias or Josephus… 


The Gospels include several parts:
  • A life of Bannous was recycled into a life of Jesus (including some episodes: The Sermon on the Mountain; The Curse of the Pharisees; The eschatological discourse, etc.; The resurrection of the daughter / son of Jairus (Eleazar the Sicarius); The exorcism of Legion; The Simon announcing the destiny of Jesus in Luke probably should match the Essene Simon mentioned in the works of Flavius Josephus; The quest for disciples by Jesus in Galilee could match the quest for disciples by Bannous to escape John the Baptist; The life of Bannous written by Josephus must have contained speeches, overly warlike aspects of Bannous were avoided by Flavius Josephus to conceal his revolutionary tendencies. 
  • The mysterious man whom John the Baptist feels unworthy of is Herod Agrippa I. We say this because of the similarity between the dove descending on Jesus and the owl alighting on the head of Herod Agrippa during his imprisonment in Rome. We believe that Herod Agrippa I was murdered by Rome for his military preparations against Rome. Flavius Josephus could not defend him in his official works.
  • Most of the miracles by Jesus are performed on the Sabbath, so they do not come from Flavius Josephus, but from Christians who wanted to suppress the Sabbath.
  • The sentences said by Jesus could come from a book found by Hermas (Rev. 8: 1-3) and given to Clement of Rome. They may be the logia translated by Papias of Hierapolis.
  • Jesus’ parables present similarities with the parables of Hermas (The Shepherd); these parables were composed by Hermas, and recycled in Jesus’ parables.
  • Jesus’ discourse in the Gospel of John presents similarities with the Instructions on the Two Spirits found at Qumran (Jesus = the spirit of truth and Satan = the spirit of perversion)
  • Jesus’ conviction relates to the narrative of Flavius Josephus on the destruction of the Temple (Pontius Pilate wants to save Jesus as Titus wants to save the Temple. Jesus will be killed despite Pontius Pilate as the Temple will be destroyed despite Titus).
  • The claim that the Jews killed Jesus (or are responsible for his death) aims to exonerate Titus from the destruction of the Temple (in the Talmud, referring to the conflict between Yavneh and Greek Judaizers who are accused of having abandoned Jerusalem to the fury of the Roman Legions).
  • The intervention of Pilate’s wife to save Jesus is an allusion to Berenice of Judaea, who was the mistress of the Emperor Titus and who certainly intervened to save the Temple.
  • The Eucharist, the multiplication of the bread and the transformation of water into wine, and the Logos that manifests as life and light are allusions to the Hermetic Teachings of Alexandria. This helps explain the similarities between the Gospels and the Corpus Hermeticum. (The nine charisms are another allusion to Hermeticism: the seven planets, the ogdoad and the ennead which is attainment).
  • The prologue to John's gospel (1, 1–5 and 1, 10, 11) are hermetic: manifestation of the LOGOS as LIFE and as LIGHT (see Corpus Hermeticum I §9, §12 and §17)
  • The need to believe in Jesus could come from Simon Magus; episodes on the adulterous woman and the prostitute in the house of the Pharisee are allusions to Helen of Tyre, the wife of Simon Magus. 
  • The successful resurrection of Jesus is to combat the failed resurrection of Simon Magus, but that his disciples could present as successful.
  • The claim that Jesus descended from King David aims at fighting the Rabbis of Yavneh who claimed descent from King David.
  • The claim that Jesus is the Messiah is to prevent people from following other false messiahs like Simon Bar Kochba.
  • Several passages in the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles aim to ridicule or belittle Peter (Bannous) and John the Baptist while exalting Jesus.
  • Some of Jesus’ miracles were also performed by Emperor Vespasian (To compare Suetonius The twelve caesars §7 and Tacitus, Histories, Book 4, §81; with Mark 8, 22–27 / 3, 1–6 / 2, 1–12, Matthew 9, 27–31 and 9, 1–8; Luke 5, 17–26 and John 9, 1–41.)
  • The anointing of Bethany is similar at chapter 111–112 of Satyricon by Petronius, etc.


Jesus did not exist as he is a theological concept represented in human form.
If Jesus existed, the Gospels do not tell his life. His life and his speeches are from Bannous, his parables from Hermas, his logia from the Essenes, his death refers to the destruction of the Temple, his resurrection alludes to Henoch, etc.
Christianity must be defined as a neo-Judaism which abolished the commandments that the Greeks did not like (Sabbath, circumcision, kashrut, etc.) and which is faithful to the Roman Empire.
The primitive tendencies that were used to create Christianity are:
  1. The Logos worship that comes from the philosophy of Philo of Alexandria;
  2. Fear of Gnosticism and especially of the teachings of Simon Magus;
  3. Hermeticist Jews or the primitive Sethian Gnosis (we think they did not long remain Christian and eventually returned to Judaism; the Merkabah meditations must be attributed to their successors);
  4. Romans essenians with Flavius Josephus and Hermas;
  5. Note that in the Gospels, we feel a tension between Philonians who believe in the FATHER and the LOGOS and Essenes who believe in the FATHER and the HOLY SPIRIT. This tension was solved when the dogma of the Trinity was established, after 170. 

— Stephan HOEBEECK
author of 

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