On the unoriginality of Christian writings


Many people maybe unaware of the criticisms against Christianity in its infancy especially because most of these did not get to us and even what we have came to us in fragments. I am always grateful to my friend arch for referring me to Celsus. Here are a few gems from his writings. I don’t know what the whole book would have looked liked but it is one of those I would have devoured.

He writes

“Many of the ideas of the Christians have been expressed better– and earlier– by the Greeks, who were however modest enough to refrain from saying that their ideas came from a god or a son of god. The ancients in their wisdom revealed certain truths to those able to understand: Plato, son of Ariston, points to the truth about the highest good when he says that it cannot be expressed in words, but rather comes from familiarity– like a flash from the blue, imprinting itself upon the soul… But Plato, having said this, does not go on to record some myth to make his point (as do so many others), nor does he silence the inquirer who questions some of the truths he professes; Plato does not ask people to stop questioning, or to accept that god id like such and such…Rather, he tells us where his doctrines come from; there is, in short, a history to what he says, and he is happy to point to the sources of his knowledge, instead of asking us to believe that he speaks on his own authority..

he continues

Not only do they misunderstand the words of the philosophers; they even stoop to assigning words of the philosophers to their Jesus. For example, we are told that Jesus judged the rich with the saying ‘It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of god.’ Yet we know that Plato expressed this very idea in a purer form when he said, ‘It is impossible for an exceptionally good man to be exceptionally rich.’* Is one utterance more inspired than the other?”

and then the best line

Christians, needless to say, utterly detest one another; they slander each other constantly with the vilest forms of abuse, and cannot come to any sort of agreement in their teaching. Each sect brands its own, fills the head of its own with deceitful nonsense…

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

19 thoughts on “On the unoriginality of Christian writings

  1. archaeopteryx1 says:

    I knew you and Celsus would get along nicely.

    Like

  2. john zande says:

    β€˜It is impossible for an exceptionally good man to be exceptionally rich.’

    Ooooh, another act of plagiarism!

    Like

  3. themodernidiot says:

    Two points I have issue with:
    1) the claim that Christians detest one another. They detest each other no more than they detest anyone else, no more than atheists detest Christians. It’s quite a bold generalization to make. I’ve met plenty of Christians, who don’t detest anybody. They also work very well together on curriculums and sermons, and boy howdy can they fundraisers and do potlucks.
    I do agree there are SOME Christians who fit this description. A qualifier would go a long way in getting people to listen.
    2) It is not impossible for an exceptionally rich man or good to be crazy rich. Happens every day. Good dudes with an without cash are everywhere. My brother in law is one of the most wonderful men I’ve ever known in my life–completely loaded. Again, be sure you’ve covered all the exceptions before handing out blanket statements. It weakens atheist argument, and there’s a good chance it will be dismissed as judgmental tripe.

    In support of this post however, and of course its fantastic author, heck yeah, the Christians Totally ripped everybody off. Thanks for the examples, new stuff I didn’t know. Love the learning I get when I come here πŸ™‚

    Like

    • makagutu says:

      Hey friend,

      #1. Celsus is writing at the infancy of Christianity and there are all this supremacy battles between the different sects. Those arguing for divinity of Jesus and those against and so many other issues. In such a context, I don’t think it is bold generalization rather a record of what he observed and this still happens today among various christian sects.

      #2. Here is quoting Plato’s Laws saying Jesus is not original and does not acknowledge his sources. On whether an exceptionally good man can be exceptionally rich is one that would require a long discussion.

      Am always happy to see you and the challenges you pose

      Like

  4. themodernidiot says:

    And as always, thank you for your patience πŸ™‚

    Like

  5. emmylgant says:

    Is one utterance better than another?
    Love it.
    It’s questioning “rebranding”…

    Like

  6. Alice says:

    Very interesting.

    Like

  7. aguywithoutboxers says:

    Thank you for sharing this, my friend! Nice job exposing the truth! Much love and naked hugs! πŸ™‚

    Like

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