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Stephaniemiller

Stephanie's books and other things

I like books. I like art. I have opinions.....you've been warned.

Currently reading

A Clash of Kings
George R.R. Martin
The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto
Tavis Smiley, Cornel West
The Wind Through the Keyhole (The Dark Tower, #4.5)
Stephen King, Jae Lee
Master Strokes: Watercolor: A Step-By-Step Guide to Using the Techniques of the Masters
Hazel Harrison
The Mad Art of Caricature!: A Serious Guide to Drawing Funny Faces
Tom Richmond (Illustrator)
Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth - Reza Aslan "Hello there! Jesus of Nazareth.....Right?"

"Um, yes that's me, and you are?"

"Stephanie, nice to meet you."

"How did you know my name?" Said Jesus "And what the devil is that contraption you're sitting on?"

"This is a time machine, a lawn mower/laptop, freak lightning strike.....and ta da! Time machine. A friend of mine let me borrow it so that I could come to your time and talk with you. See, I read this book about you and I decided to stop by here because there's some stuff we need to get straight."

"That was nice of your friend to lend his machine to you."

"Oh, nice isn't the word I would use. It came at a hefty price."

"Wait a minute, a book about me? Why? I'm just a working class Joe. What could possibly be so interesting about me that could result in an entire book?"

"Well, there have been many books written about you. One is a really big book, called the bible, that was turned into a religion with you as the head of it. It's called Christianity."

"Really? I don't understand. 'When' are you from Stephanie?"

"I'm from the year 2013, which is roughly 2013 years after your birth. See, we started keeping track of the years by using your miraculous birth as a starting point."

"Miraculous? What was so miraculous about my birth?"

"Well, in the bible there is a story that you were born to a virgin, Mary, and your papa is God Himself.....making you the son of God....and a virgin. Don't ask me how THAT happened exactly, but that's the story many believe as literal, even though it was entirely made up to make you fit the description of the Messiah according to Jewish prophecy."

"My mother is a great person, but she wasn't a virgin, I've got siblings! Look, see the tall guy with the long hair and wearing sandals over by the camel?"

"Yeah."

"That's my brother James." We all wave.

"Oh, I read about him in the book I mentioned, Zealot, he played a big part in early Christianity but then was downplayed because of the whole virgin Mary story." I said.

"That's odd. I know about the Messiah that your talking about, many other guys have been 'The Messiah' with many disciples of their own. Can't swing a sheep around here without hitting a Messiah. Whether or not we are 'The Messiah', we all want the same thing....to kick some Roman ass! Those bastards have occupied us for long enough!!" Said Jesus.

"I read about how you go into the Temple and wreck the money changers tables, good for you! You are quite the political revolutionary. In the bible, you are portrayed as a peace loving, hippie type."

"Really? Man, I can't stand those rich Roman bastards....taking everything for themselves and leaving so little for my people. I like peace and all, but that's not going get these Romans the hell out of here. Uh, what's a hippie?"

"Never mind that. The important thing that you should know is that the Romans are going to arrest you for that stunt. Your Governor, Pontius Pilate, is out to get you." I said.

"I know. I'm sure that the murderous jerk will crucify me along side the rest of the Messiahs." *sigh*

"Sorry, but that is what is going to happen. When the Romans adopt Christianity as their Religion they make Pilot a sympathetic character who calls for you to be saved from the cross. They make it appear as if your fellow Jews are the ones who call for your death instead, cause the Romans can't appear as the bad guy in this after turning Christian."

"What?? That's just nuts!! Why would my people want me to die? No one will ever believe that.....will they?" Asked Jesus.

"Saddly, they do Jesus. Some Christians believe the Bible is THE word of God and not a book of parables, This resulted in a lot of ugly anti-semitetism over the years. Many were persecuted and killed because it was believed that it was they who killed you."

"That makes me so sad." Said Jesus

"Me too."


I liked this book. Aslan obviously knows what he's talking about, as he pointed out in that unfortunate interview on Fox, he has a few degrees on the subject of religion. I think anyone would find this book fascinating. I did.

I particularly like how he ended this book....as I quote here.

"2000 years later, the Christ of Paul's creation has utterly subsumed the Jesus of history. The memory of the revolutionary zealot who walked across Galilee, gathering an army of disciples with the goal of establishing the kingdom of God on earth. The Magnetic preacher who defied the authority of the Temple priesthood in Jerusalem, the radical Jewish nationalist who challenged the Roman occupation and lost, has been almost completely lost to history. That is a shame. Because the one thing any comprehensive study of the historical Jesus should hopefully reveal is that Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus the man, is every bit as compelling, charismatic and praiseworthy as Jesus the Christ. He is, in short, someone worth believing in."

I agree.