Do Similarities Between Christianity And Paganism Prove That Christianity Borrowed Its’ Teachings From The Pagans?  Part Two

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

While many hold that Christianity borrowed its’ main doctrines from the pagan religions of the day, the simple fact of the matter is that Christianity could not have done such; for the dating of the ancient documents of paganism clearly shows that Christianity and its’ doctrines actually predated the pagan doctrines that Christianity was said to have stolen!

This, indeed, was one of the reasons why the whole “copycat” theory was thoroughly discarded and discredited generations ago.

Indeed, the evidence is pretty clear that the pagans actually borrowed many of their teachings from the Christians!

John Machen, writing of this, declared:

“The hypothesis is faced by one obvious difficulty. The difficulty appears in the late date of most of the sources of information…Every step is uncertain. In the first place, it is often by no means clear that the pagan usage has not been influenced by Christianity. The Church did not long remain obscure; even early in the second century, according to the testimony of Pliny, it was causing the heathen temples to be deserted. What is more likely than that in an age of syncretism the adherents of pagan religion should borrow weapons from so successful a rival? It must be remembered that the paganism of the Hellenistic age had elevated syncretism to a system; it had absolutely no objection of principle against receiving elements from every source. In the Christian Church, on the other hand, there was a strong objection to such procedure; Christianity from the beginning was like Judaism in being exclusive. It regarded with the utmost abhorrence anything that was tainted by a pagan origin. This abhorrence, at least in the early period, more than overbalanced the fact that the Christians for the most part had formerly been pagans, so that it might be thought natural for them to retain something of pagan belief. Conversion involved a passionate renunciation of former beliefs. Such, at any rate, was clearly the kind of conversion that was required by Paul.” (John Machen, The Origin Of Paul’s Religion, 3715-3740 (Kindle Edition).

Please notice my friends that the evidence is pretty strong that the pagans borrowed their ideas from the Christians, and not visa versa.

Another researcher, carefully examining the claims of a popular Internet video which is full of historical inaccuracies, tells us:

“The best known example of a resurrection claim is the Horus/Osiris myth, but Osiris did not rise from the dead and return to this world as did Jesus. Instead, he was made king of the underworld. 28 After his death, Attis eventually turns into a pine tree. Many sources claiming resurrections were written long after the first- century sources for Christianity and therefore could not have influenced the Gospel accounts or Paul’s teaching in letters such as 1 Corinthians. A second- century source tells us of the resurrection of Adonis. Claims of Krishna’s resurrection do not emerge until the sixth or seventh century. 29…A third fallacy is the chronological fallacy . In order for the copycat charge of borrowing to succeed, one needs to provide evidence that the parallel preceded the writing of the Gospel accounts and the letters of Paul— all written in the first century. However, this simply is not the case. First, as mentioned above, there is no evidence that there was any pagan mystery influence in first- century Palestine. 31 Second, the mystery religions evolved over time, and as they did, their beliefs and narratives changed. This results in several versions of the various pagan myths. Most of the evidence we have of their narratives comes from sources dated in the second and third centuries, a time when they were experiencing the peak of their influence in the Mediterranean world. We have little evidence of the beliefs of these religions from the first century.” (Mark W. Foreman, ‘Challenging The Zeitgeist Movie: Parallelomania On Steroids,’ in Paul Copan & William Lane Craig, Come Let Us Reason: New Essays In Christian Apologetics, 3544-3562 (Kindle Edition); Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group)

The claim that Christianity borrowed its’ teachings from the pagan religions of the first century is simply false.

Indeed, time after time, the historicity of the New Testament has been continually confirmed by numerous archaeological discoveries and secular references.

The teaching of the New Testament revolves around the Son of God Who died for the sins of humanity, was buried, and rose again on the third day, as attested by over five hundred witnesses (1 Corinthians 15:1-8).

Why not today place your complete faith in Jesus Christ, repenting of your sins, confessing Him before men, and being baptized into Him to have your sins forgiven (Acts 2:37-38; 8:37)?

If you are a child of God who turned your back on Jesus through sin, why not repent of that today and return to Him in prayer (1 John 1:9)?

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.

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