Zombies, Matthew 27:52-53, Southern Baptists and reality

Zombies (the “living dead”) have always been a part of the world’s sacred and profane literature.  Legends abound about zombies and other ghouls.  Each tale was created to keep the people passive: to oppress them with religious dogma that would put their food and wealth onto the tables and into the pockets of the priests, pastors, rabbis, mullahs and imams, and similar soothsayers. Religion has long been the yoke to harness the poor to do the bidding unquestioningly of those who would speaker for god. The quickest path to wealth is through the ministry, requiring next to no labor or thinking.

Easter Island statues memorialize a prehistoric zombie outbreak

Zombies and their depiction go back at least

Shaft of the dead man - Lascaux Cave

to 35,000 – 23,000 BCE in Romanian caves, 25,000 – 15,000 BCE, as seen in the famed caves of  Lascaux, France, and of course the more famous statues on Easter Island.  There are depictions of similar living dead that date to 60,000 BCE in Katanda, Central Africa.  There is evidence of zombiphobia in Egypt as early as 3500 BCE (Maish, A., and R. Friedman. Pondering Paddy: Unwrapping the Mysteries of HK43. Nekhen News 11: 6-7; and, Murray, M.A., 1956. “Burial customs and beliefs in the hereafter in Predynastic Egypt”. Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 42: 86-96.).

There is commentary on a purported zombie attacks in ancient Egypt as early as 3200 BC.   However, most of the tales were maintained to keep the people satisfied, and there is little hard evidence that zombies existed except in the minds of local citizens.  Most of the alleged evidence for zombies is from and Hierakonpolis where some workers were stricken when their brain had been infected with the virus Solanum that was claimed to turn people into zombies: they walk upright but in a near catatonic state, have halting speech, etc. (the virus does not exist; it was made up by Max Brooks to support his book on zombies and zombification).

Solanum seaforthianum (Brasilian Nightshade)

The plant solanum was cited by Pliny the Elder (23-79 CE) in a botanical essay. What is known is that only green parts and unripe fruit are poisonous to people; however, there are many edible varietals including the potato, tomato, and eggplant.

 While Solanum, as a plant, is poisonous and has been fatal, it is also used by native people as medicine but in low amounts.  This plant is known as Giant Devil’s-fig (Solanum chrysotrichum) has been shown to be an effective treatment for seborrhoeic dermatitis in a scientific study. It is most commonly found in Australia.

Solanum. chrysotrichum

 The Assyrians were among the most ferocious. Ashurbanipal, king from 668 to 627 BCE, was recorded as having exalted: “I will hack up the flesh [of my enemies] and then carry it with me to show off in other countries”.  His heirs were equal to every move of the king, cutting open the bellies of their opponents “as though they were young rams” and demanding that the people see “the living dead walk among them.”

Mesopotamia was a haven for many zombie stories, including those that prelude the single reference in the Gospel of Matthew.  The issue of zombies raising from the dead, stepping out of their tombs, waiting to hear the Judgment Call (Apocalypse) is as old as recorded time, and in Sumerian and Akaddian records matches the Biblical account added to Matthew 27 (verses 52-53: καὶ τὰ μνημεῖα ἀνεῴχθησαν καὶ πολλὰ σώματα τῶν κεκοιμημένων  ἁγίων ἠγέρθησαν, καὶ ἐξελθόντες ἐκ τῶν μνημείων μετὰ τὴν ἔγερσιν αὐτοῦ  εἰσῆλθον εἰς τὴν ἁγίαν πόλιν καὶ ἐνεφανίσθησαν πολλοῖς, compare it to 2 Kings 13:21 for a similar resurrection; cf. Isaiah 26:19, and the far older Babylonian lore in Job 42:17 that was fully plagiarized by the early Hebrews). It is found in the Decent of Ishtar to the Netherworld a goddess who goes to the Netherworld to see her sister Ereshkigal. Ishtar is the goddess of sex and war, and her sister is goddess of the underworld; male deities are not yet supreme.

Ishtar (Goddess of sex and war; storms Hell's Gate and wins)

The Mesopotamian Biblical account of the Decent of Ishtar to the Netherworld, preserved on sanctified clay tablets (the best known is the first

Gilgamesh Tablet XI recounting the Great Flood

two-thirds of Tablet XI (created c. 2700 BCE; cf. Tigay, Jeffrey H. (1982), The Evolution of the Gilgamesh Epic, Philadelphia, PA, USA: University of Pennsylvania Press, p. 217 f.) which is the earliest record of the myth of the Great Flood, at least one thousand years older than the account in Genesis), gives the scholar two of the prime focus points for zombies that would make an appearance in the New Testament: 1) animated dead people who 2) feed on the living. The latter is not found in Matthew but in all other contemporary accounts; what is unique in the Biblical account is that the Jesus of the New

Fragment of Tablet VI (Epic of the Gilgamesh) Zombies rise up

Testament tells his followers to “eat of my flesh” and “drink of my blood”—typical zombie theology: Matthew 26:26, a self-idealized cannibalism common in all Mesopotamian cults and is found on twelve clay tablets of the Epic of the Gilgamesh; cp. Tablet VI and Ishtar’s rage:

I will knock down the Gates of the Netherworld,
I will smash the door posts, and leave the doors flat down,
and will let the dead go up to eat the living!
And the dead will outnumber the living!

Perillos being forced into the brazen bull that he built for Phalaris

In ancient Greece and Italy, giving antecedent to the myth of a blood thirsty Babylonian god, saw regular brutality during the reign of Phalaris (Φάλαρις) tyrant of Acragas (Agrigentum) in Sicily, from approximately 570 to 554 BC.  He had hollow a bronze oven made in the shape of a bull (always a symbol of a god, and nearly universally known as Yah {or Jehovah}) in which he would roast his enemies alive (Pindar, Pythian 1), and fed on suckling babies (Tatian. Oratio ad Graecos (“Tatian’s Address to the Greeks“), Chap. XXXIV; it is considered a heretical work written by a student of Justin Martyr who turned to Gnosticism as being more in keeping with the Sayings of Jesus than the emerging state controlled church), giving birth to the legend of the slaughter of infants in Egypt and Israel.  In the end he was overthrown in a general uprising headed by Telemachus, the ancestor of Theron (tyrant c. 488-472 BC), and burned in his brazen bull. Both the story and the symbolism became incorporated into Hebrew lore with the invention of the myth of Moloch and the Biblical Gold Calf (עֵגֶּל הַזָהָב) in Exodus 32:4—the Egyptian god Apis—but the Hebrews would have two golden calves unlike the Egyptians (1 Kings 12:26–30; cf. Nehemiah 9:18–19).

In most cases the dead would eventually rise up to greet their sadistic saviour who commanded them to walk among mortals as testimony to the power of the demigod. In most cases the zombies were foretellers of impending doom and the destruction of the planet in a great apocalypse.  The prophet Ezekiel had his own Zombie army: Ezekiel 37: 1-14 (1) The hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley, it was full of bones. (2) He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry.  (3) He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said,”O sovereign Lord, you alone know.” (4)  Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, “Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! (5) This is what the sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. (6) I will attach tendons to you and make flesh upon you and cover you with skin. I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord”:  הָיְתָה עָלַי יַד־יְהוָה וַיֹּוצִאֵנִי בְרוּחַ יְהוָה וַיְנִיחֵנִי בְּתֹוךְ הַבִּקְעָה וְהִיא מְלֵאָה עֲצָמֹות׃  וְהֶעֱבִירַנִי עֲלֵיהֶם סָבִיב סָבִיב וְהִנֵּה רַבֹּות מְאֹד עַל־פְּנֵי הַבִּקְעָה וְהִנֵּה יְבֵשֹׁות מְאֹד׃  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי בֶּן־אָדָם הֲתִחְיֶינָה הָעֲצָמֹות הָאֵלֶּה וָאֹמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה אַתָּה יָדָעְתָּ׃  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הִנָּבֵא עַל־הָעֲצָמֹות הָאֵלֶּה וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵיהֶם הָעֲצָמֹות הַיְבֵשֹׁות שִׁמְעוּ דְּבַר־יְהוָה׃  כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה לָעֲצָמֹות הָאֵלֶּה הִנֵּה אֲנִי מֵבִיא בָכֶם רוּחַ וִחְיִיתֶם׃  וְנָתַתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם גִּדִים וְהַעֲלֵתִי עֲלֵיכֶם בָּשָׂר וְקָרַמְתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם עֹור וְנָתַתִּי בָכֶם רוּחַ וִחְיִיתֶם וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה׃ וְנִבֵּאתִי כַּאֲשֶׁר צֻוֵּיתִי וַיְהִי־קֹול כְּהִנָּבְאִי וְהִנֵּה־רַעַשׁ וַתִּקְרְבוּ עֲצָמֹות עֶצֶם אֶל־עַצְמֹו׃  וְרָאִיתִי וְהִנֵּה־עֲלֵיהֶם גִּדִים וּבָשָׂר עָלָה וַיִּקְרַם עֲלֵיהֶם עֹור מִלְמָעְלָה וְרוּחַ אֵין בָּהֶם׃  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הִנָּבֵא אֶל־הָרוּחַ הִנָּבֵא בֶן־אָדָם וְאָמַרְתָּ אֶל־הָרוּחַ כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה מֵאַרְבַּע רוּחֹות בֹּאִי הָרוּחַ וּפְחִי בַּהֲרוּגִים הָאֵלֶּה וְיִחְיוּ׃  וְהִנַּבֵּאתִי כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּנִי וַתָּבֹוא בָהֶם הָרוּחַ וַיִּחְיוּ וַיַּעַמְדוּ עַל־רַגְלֵיהֶם חַיִל גָּדֹול מְאֹד־מְאֹד׃ ס וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי בֶּן־אָדָם הָעֲצָמֹות הָאֵלֶּה כָּל־בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל הֵמָּה הִנֵּה אֹמְרִים יָבְשׁוּ עַצְמֹותֵינוּ וְאָבְדָה תִקְוָתֵנוּ נִגְזַרְנוּ לָנוּ׃  לָכֵן הִנָּבֵא וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵיהֶם כֹּה־אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי פֹתֵחַ אֶת־קִבְרֹותֵיכֶם וְהַעֲלֵיתִי אֶתְכֶם מִקִּבְרֹותֵיכֶם עַמִּי וְהֵבֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם אֶל־אַדְמַת יִשְׂרָאֵל׃ ס  וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה בְּפִתְחִי אֶת־קִבְרֹותֵיכֶם וּבְהַעֲלֹותִי אֶתְכֶם מִקִּבְרֹותֵיכֶם עַמִּי׃  וְנָתַתִּי רוּחִי בָכֶם וִחְיִיתֶם וְהִנַּחְתִּי אֶתְכֶם עַל־אַדְמַתְכֶם וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי יְהוָה דִּבַּרְתִּי וְעָשִׂיתִי נְאֻם־יְהוָה׃ ף.  The entire story is plagiarized from ancient Egyptian military history and theology that was repeated in the records of numerous growing states including that of Persia and the Hyksos.  This may be the source for the legend of the lost army of Cambyses II. Cambyses II led a Persian army of 50,000 soldiers into Egypt and supposedly perished in a sandstorm in ancient Egypt 2500 years ago, long before any Hebrews were known or Habiru mercenaries serving the Hyksos.  It continues to this day with fantasies from New York to Albania and beyond.

Zombies are introduced in the Old Testament, in Zechariah 14:12 And the Lord will send a plague on all the nations that fought against Jerusalem. Their people will become like walking corpses, their flesh rotting away: וְזֹאת תִּהְיֶה הַמַּגֵּפָה אֲשֶׁר יִגֹּף יְהוָה אֶת־כָּל־הָעַמִּים אֲשֶׁר צָבְאוּ עַל־יְרוּשָׁלִָם הָמֵק בְּשָׂרֹו וְהוּא עֹמֵד עַל־רַגְלָיו וְעֵינָיו תִּמַּקְנָה בְחֹרֵיהֶן וּלְשֹׁונֹו תִּמַּק בְּפִיהֶם׃ (cp. the gentleness of a loving god in Leviticus 26:16, Deuteronomy 28:21-22, Job 18:13, Zechariah 14:15, 18).

This is the foundation for Matthew 27:52-53: 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and[a] went into the holy city and appeared to many people. (καὶ τὰ μνημεῖα ἀνεῴχθησαν καὶ πολλὰ σώματα τῶν κεκοιμημένων ἁγίων ἠγέρθησαν, καὶ ἐξελθόντες ἐκ τῶν μνημείων μετὰ  τὴν ἔγερσιν αὐτοῦ εἰσῆλθον εἰς τὴν ἁγίαν πόλιν καὶ ἐνεφανίσθησαν πολλοῖς.)

These two lines give cause for pausing in reflection on the warrior Jesus of the New Testament.  It is in error to even consider that such a ghoulish event happened.  Josephus, the chronicler of the time, does not mention it—nor do any of the apologists for what became Christianity, nor do its detractors.  It is a unique mentioning.  The tone and word choice of these two lines indicates a later addition to the text; but it has greater value.  It repeats what ancient Babylonians and Hyksos and their mercenary troops (Habiru: Hebrew) saw in the tale of the ambulant dead a promise of eternal life or immortality.  But to give full credit to those who would eventually call themselves Hebrews is a disservice to fact, as such tales appear universally. 

The ancient Scandinavians, before the intrusion of Paulanity, were an advanced people with a theology similar to what would become Christianity. Among those who were sought out for advice was the zombie Völuspá (“Prophecy [spá] of the völva”).  The Great God Odin, the chief god of the Norse pantheon, has conjured up the spirit of a dead völva and commanded this spirit to reveal the past and the future. She was reluctant, crying out, “What do you ask of me? Why tempt me?” Since she is already dead, she shows no fear of Odin, and continually taunts him.  Odin was seeking information on the war of the zombies that would come when his favorite son, the God Thor, would set out to battle evil in the universal war of Ragnarök (Armageddon).  This predicted battle foretold the ultimate death of a number of major figures (including the gods Odin, Thor, Freyr, Heimdall, and the jötunn (trickster) Loki), as gods would disappear when people gained sufficient intelligence to stop believing in them; it would also lead to the occurrence of various natural disasters, and the subsequent submersion of the world in water (a second Great Flood). Afterwards, the world resurfaces anew and fertile, the surviving gods meet, and the world is repopulated by two human survivors (gender is not spelled out).
The Ragnarök (Armageddon) would be fought, in part, by zombies, which in Scandinanvian Viking culture are known as draugr (draug in Icelandic; draugen in Norwegian, Swedish and Danish).  Ancient to medieval Scandinavians saw zombies as an exemplar of a continuation of a tumultuous life: carousing, drinking, fighting, wenching and generally making a nuisance of oneself (e.g. Harald Halt-foot).  A similar phenomena is found in Japanese culture where Japanese zombies reflected extreme piety such as the living mummies on Mount Yodono. Zombies even appear in Mexico, both in the past and today where it is known as the Day of the Dead.  The Day of the Dead is a celebration for the returning revenants who are welcomed and treated as guests, just as they would be if they were still alive and had returned briefly from living somewhere else, which in the eyes of ancient cultures they were.

With the invention of Christianity and the elevation of Paulinity (the writings of the legendary St. Paul) by the pagan Emperor Constantine I (Christianity tries to claim that Constantine converted to Christianity on his death-bed, but there is no proof of this happening; at the most he became an Arian Christian as his “confessor” was the Arian bishop Eusebius) at his Council of Nicaea in 325 CE.  Constantine’s one major contribution to Christianity was ordering all books and writings that disagreed with his church were to be burned in a manner that popes and prelates of the Middle Ages and later Adolf Hitler would follow, leading the psychotic Coptic Theophilus of Alexandria to torch the great Library of Alexandria and commission the murder of the world’s greatest mathematician and philosopher on orders of the Christian Emperor Theodosius who took, energetically, all measures including torture and murder in converting all his subjects to Christianity,with most of this coming from fourth century writers that were used by Edward Gibbons (there is a sound argument that it was destroyed earlier, by Julius Cesar).  The most illustrious of the victims was the virgin (unmarried) Hypatia whose flesh was torn off of her body while she lived by enraged Christian monks. Hypatia had served as the librarian but was singled out for martyrdom by the fatuous followers of the  phantasmagorical Theophilus because of her comments against Christianity that she equated with fantasies of small children.  Personally, I find more evidence for Theodosius as the prime instigator given his sordid record of forcing everyone to convert to a bastardized religion that had nothing in common with the original scrolls and the Sayings of Jesus, but were invented by later church councils that would even elevate the Egyptian Trinity to being a Christian concept, transmogrifying the original Isis-Ra-Horus into the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost to remove the significant stature of a woman as being the primary mother of all things (the ancient Hebrews would transmogrify this by removing Horus in favor of the sun-god Ra and substituting the word lord (El) to complete their trinity.  They would ultimately abbreviate the Egyptian Trinity into Is-Ra-El: Israel). 

I do not agree with the Greek testament by Rufinus Tyrannius who continued Eusebius Historia Ecclesia (Books X and XI) as he claims that the local pagans “incited the Christian mobs” with their refusal to convert to the pagan faith out of Jerusalem.  The “local pagans” had been heavily taxed, were beaten, denied jobs, and forced to attend the “love feasts” of the early Christians and were victimized daily, having no say in their own destiny.  This is supported by  the pagan writer Eunapius of Antioch (died after 400 CE) who wrote about the sack of the Serapeum in his Life of Antonius, and, before he died in 390 CE, prophesied that all the pagan temples in Alexandria would be destroyed (not a desperately surprising contingency at the time) out of “religious fanaticism” and an effort to make the scrolls of Christianity into a god that he termed as bibliolatry: worship of the bible, predating the rise and evolving intolerance of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Constantine’s Christian Church (originally known as the catholic [universal] Church taught that the dead might return from the grave to take vengeance on the living for not saying Masses for them, and paying the priest for each Mass said.  This had little to do with piety, but was ecclesiastical extortion, one of the many ways that the Church raised revenue, and on the Night before All Souls Day (Halloween; on All Souls Day read the Bollandist Ada Sanctorum (Saec. VI., pt. i. p. 585) which requires “sacrifice”) the Church said special masses for the dead always at inflated prices—the offerings being put into gourds (similar to pumpkins) that were crafted with faces and had a candle within to illuminate the scowl or smile depending on the nature of the carver.  At each Mass the priest would remind parishioners that the faithful would soon come near a walking dead in testimony of the resurrection of Jesus and the need that the fearful faithful had to put coins in the gourd to keep the candle stable so that its light would lead the New Testament Jesus to the church where the central figure would enter the host that would be displayed upon a table or altar where the sacrifice (similar to Abram’s near-slaughter of his son Isaac) of the “Son of God” was to be executed.  Halloween, like all Christian celebrations, borrowed heavily from incorporates traditions from pagan harvest festivals and festivals honouring the dead, particularly the Celtic Samhain, especially in votives and prayers for the dead and the payment to priest to pray for the dead to stay away from the living (Nicholas Rogers (2002). Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night. Oxford UK and New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press, pp. 11-21 sqq).  Today, Celtic Reconstructionists, pagans, and others who maintain ancestral customs, make offerings to the gods and the ancestors in keeping with their original heritage before missionaries arrived swinging battle axes and swords while preaching from Bibles (Hörandner, Editha (ed.; 2005), Halloween in der Steiermark und anderswo, Volkskunde (Münster in Westfalen), Wien (Vienna), Austria: LIT Verlag Münster; and, Santino, Jack (ed.;  1994), Halloween and Other Festivals of Death and Life.  Knoxville, TN, USA: University of Tennessee Press).

The ever-intolerant world of evangelical Christianity that demands that believers accept every word of the Bible as literally true has had numerous casualties in its battle for conformity especially within the Southern Baptist Convention where literacy is an article of faith and the Bible considered inerrant: Article XX of the Chicago Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics states, 

We affirm that since God is the author of all truth, all truths, biblical and extra biblical, are consistent and cohere [sic: coherent], and that the Bible speaks truth when it touches on matters pertaining to nature, history, or anything else. We further affirm that in some cases extra biblical data have value for clarifying what scripture teaches and for prompting correction of faulty interpretations. We deny that extra biblical [sic: extra biblical or extra-biblical] views ever disprove the teaching of Scripture or hold priority over it.

This is matched by the in the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy:

We affirm that canonical Scripture should always be interpreted on the basis that it is infallible and inerrant. However, in determining what the God-taught writer is asserting in each passage, we must pay the most careful attention to its claims and character as a human production. In inspiration, God utilized the culture and conventions of His [sic] penman’s milieu.  A milieu that God controls in His sovereign providence; it is misinterpretation to imagine otherwise.

So history must be treated as history, poetry as poetry, hyperbole and metaphor as hyperbole and metaphor, generalization and approximation as what they are, and so forth. Differences between literary conventions in Bible times and in ours must also be observed”.

Michael Licona (Facebook)

Michael Licona (Facebook)

While the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy asserts that an inattention to the culture and literary conventions in Bible times could lead to a misinterpretation of the biblical text, professors have been fired from teaching appointments for not conforming their interpretations according to erroneous English translations and codified canons, as has been the case with Professor Michael Liconawho was denounced by the twenty-first Grand

R. Albert Mohler, Jr.

Inquisitor R. Albert Mohler, Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary — the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world who wrote: The affirmation of biblical inerrancy is nothing more, and nothing less, than the affirmation of the Bible’s total truthfulness and trustworthiness. The assertion of the Bible’s inerrancy — that the Bible is “free from all falsehood or mistake” — is an essential safeguard for the Bible’s authority as the very Word of God in written form. The reason for this should be clear: to affirm anything short of inerrancy is to allow that the Bible does contain falsehoods or mistakes. The intolerance of the Southern Baptist Convention has exceeded even the corrupt Councils of the Roman Catholic Church in the Middle Ages, when “evangelical philosopher” Norman Geisler,  a Christian apologist and the co-founder of Southern Evangelical Seminary outside Charlotte, North Carolina with a PhD from Jesuit Loyola University.  

Norman Geisler

Norman Geisler has argued that creationism be taught in public schools, affirms the existence of UFOs but claims that they are “a satanic manifestation in the world for the purpose of deception” (San Francisco Chronicle, Saturday, December 12, 1981), and has publicly been accused of plagiarism (Danel W. Bachman, “The Other Side of the Coin: A Source Review of Norman Geisler’s Chapter,” FARMS Review of Books, 12/1 (2000): 175-213).  Geisler , who argues for an early dating of the New Testament going against every other learned scholar and advocating certain actions are absolutely right or wrong regardless of other contexts such as their consequences or the intentions behind them thus destroying free will, addressed two open letters to Michael Licona, charging him with violating the inerrancy of Scripture in making his argument about Matthew 27:52-53. Geisler is the problem, for he has little comprehension of interpretation in the first century.

Licona, Geisler argued, had “dehistoricized” the biblical text. As Geisler made clear, this was a direct violation of biblical inerrancy. Licona’s approach to this text, Geisler argued, “would undermine orthodoxy by dehistoricizing many crucial passages of the Bible.”  This is the approach of all tyrants who will stifle dissent: from Martin Luther to Pius IX, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI and Opus Dei cardinals and bishops such as Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne of Lima, Perú, destroy the freedom of inquiry, and rule as theocrats without a conscience.  No one should ever accept any word, any document, any message sola fide (on faith alone) as it degrades the individual, destroys education, and makes a mockery of free will. Geisler is more like the Dominican monk and

Tomás de Torquemada

Spain’s Grand Inquisitor Tomás de Torquema (the son of a Jewish rabbi), than he is a Christian on the order of the New Testament Jesus.  It is most likely that this pulpit parasite is totally unfamiliar with Matthew 7:1 or Acts 10:24, for he, like the member congregations of the Southern Baptist Convention, has placed his Bible before god and made himself and other theocrats into gods as exposed by his own words, using the cryptic psychology of unwavering obedience to authority. To accept such a command and obey with unwavering obedience can lead to catatonic withdrawal, suicide, and self-doubting of actuality and personal work completed or in-progress (Zisselman, Marc H, and Jaffe, Richard L. (2010). “ECT in the Treatment of a Patient With Catatonia: Consent and Complications” American Journal of Psychiatry. 167:127-132; cf. “Replicating Milgram: Researcher Finds Most Will Administer Shocks to Others When Prodded by ‘Authority Figure’,” December 19, 2008; American Psychological Journal; the same demand for acceptance infallibility of anyone or in anything was used successfully by Nazi Germany in containing and eliminating dissent and questioning: Joyce, Nick (2009). “In search of the Nazi personality; The Nazi Rorschach responses have captured psychologists’ imaginations for decades.” Journal of the American Psychological Association Vol 40, No. 3; cp. Gilbert, G.M. (1950). The psychology of dictatorship; based on an examination of the leaders of Nazi Germany. New York, NY, USA: Ronald Press Company). Geisel has done himself, the Southern Baptist community, and Liconia an unparalleled disservice. Geisel has put the Southern Baptist Convention, its churches, and its members, directly in line with Nazi thinking and actions, as the churches (Roman Catholic and Protestant/Lutheran) and their adherents and ministers directly supported what Hitler did (with a few minor opponents: read Ericksen, Robert P. (1985). Theologians Under Hitler: Gerhard Kittel, Paul Althaus, and Emanuel Hirsch. (New Haven, CT, USA and London, UK: Yale University Press; for unpublished material, consult the Landeskirchlichesarchiv in Hanover).

Geisler called upon Michael Licona to change his position on this text and to affirm it as historical fact without reservation. But Geisler, a member of the Evangelical Theological Society [ETS] for many years, made another very important point. He reminded Licona that such arguments had been encountered before within the ETS, and it had led to the expulsion of a member.”  This matches, identically, the heresy trials of Arius before the Emperor Constantine I leading to the bonfire of burning Arian books.”

St. Paul overseeing the burning of scrolls at Ephesus

This evolved from the mythical St. Paul (there is no record of a Saul or Tarsus or a St. Paul outside of the New Testament; he is not named nor discussed by Josephus, Tacitus, or other contemporaries, not even among the early church presbyters) and his order for the burning of books in Ephesus (Acts 19:19: A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly: ἱκανοὶ δὲ τῶν τὰ περίεργα πραξάντων συνενέγκαντες τὰς βίβλους κατέκαιον ἐνώπιον πάντων, καὶ συνεψήφισαν τὰς τιμὰς αὐτῶν καὶ εὗρον ἀργυρίου μυριάδας πέντε.) and elsewhere as “instruments of evil”.  I am surprised that Geisler has not called for an auto-de-fé to rid the world of Licona, for his overt public psychology shows him to be dictatorial with illusions of grandeur.  The same intolerance for dissenting opinion, for revision of corrupt writings, and for the clarification of texts that led to the burning of books throughout history became a furnace of hate by the Roman Catholic confessing Adolf Hitler, testified:

My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God’s truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice… And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows. For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people.

-Adolf Hitler, in a speech on 12 April 1922 (Norman H. Baynes, ed. The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939, Vol. 1 of 2, pp. 19-20, Oxford University Press, 1942)

To say that the biblical literalists are misguided is most generous of their own insanity demanding absolute obedience to a work of fiction. Albert Mohler, Jr., is totally incorrect—as there is no non-biblical historical proof for a Jesus, nor any of the mythology surrounding the Jesus of the New Testament: the birth (born in a rock similar to the god Mithras, of a virgin), found by wise men seeking the star of the apocalypse (magi), to the death by crucifixion on a pillar (not a cross tree as the gods Odin and Thor were crucified, nor any common thief on a crux).  The alleged proof in Tacitus (the “proof of Jesus” is allegedly in Annals xv.44, but the original was “lost” (burned?) and there is no existing “copy” until the eleventh century CE; Tacitus was born 25 years after the alleged death of Jesus, and was age 7 at the time of the Great Fire of Rome—he was no eye-witness; on the insertion being a “pious fraud” see: Henry Furneaux, ed., Cornelii Taciti Annalium ab excessu divi augusti libri. The annals of Tacitus with introduction and notes, 2nd ed., vol. ii, books xi-xvi. Oxford, UK: Clarendon, 1907. Appendix II, p. 416f., 418; the most that can be said for Tacitus’ account of Jesus of the New Testament is that he was merely repeating what he heard as he had no eyewitness accounts and did not do what today is considered investigative reporting: France, Richard Thomas (1986). Evidence for Jesus. London, UK: Trafalgar Square Publishing. pp. 19–20, also released by London, UK: Hodder and Stoughton, and Downers Grove, IL, USA : InterVarsity Press) and Josephus (Guignebert, Charles Albert Honoré (1914). Le problem de Jesus. Paris, France: Ernest Flammarion, 1914; reissued under the title Jesus, New York, NY, USA: University Books, 1956, p. 17; cp. Mitchell, Logan (1842?) Christian Mythologies unveiled: a series of lectures…. London, UK: Cousins, who noted:

“Mattathias, the father of Josephus, must have been a witness to the miracles which are said to have been performed by Jesus, and Josephus was born within two years after the crucifixion, yet in all the works he says nothing whatever about the life or death of Jesus Christ; as for the interpolated passage it is now universally acknowledged to be a forgery. The arguments of the ‘Christian Ajax,’ even Lardner himself, against it are these: ‘It was never quoted by any of our Christian ancestors before Eusebius. It disturbs the narrative. The language is quite Christian. It is not quoted by Chrysostom, though he often refers to Josephus, and could not have omitted quoting it had it been then in the text. It is not quoted by Photius [9th century], though he has three articles concerning Josephus; and this author expressly states that this historian has not taken the least notice of Christ. Neither Justin Martyr, in his dialogue with Trypho the Jew; nor Clemens Alexandrinus, who made so many extracts from ancient authors; nor Origen against Celsus, have ever mentioned this testimony. But, on the contrary, in chap. 25th of the first book of that work, Origen openly affirms that Josephus, who had mentioned John the Baptist, did not acknowledge Christ. That this passage is a false fabrication is admitted by Ittigius, Blondel, Le Clerc, Vandale, Bishop Warburton, and Tanaquil Faber.'”

p. 47; and, as the Rev. S. Baring-Gould remarked:

This passage is first quoted by Eusebius (fl. A.D. 315) in two places (Historia Ecclesiae, lib. I, c. xi; Demonst. Evang., lib. iii); but it was unknown to Justin Martyr (fl. A.D. 140), Clement of Alexandria (fl. A.D. 192), Tertullian (fl. A.D. 193), and Origen (fl. A.D. 230). Such a testimony would certainly have been produced by Justin in his apology or in his controversy with Trypho the Jew, had it existed in the copies of Josephus at his time. The silence of Origen is still more significant. Celsus, in his book against Christianity, introduces a Jew. Origen attacks the argument of Celsus and his Jew. He could not have failed to quote the words of Josephus, whose writings he knew, had the passage existed in the genuine text. He, indeed, distinctly affirms that Josephus did not believe in Christ (Contra Celsus I).

The absurdity of turning to Josephus or Tacitus has long been disproven, and the New Testament not only found saturated with errors but statements that contradict (or “enhance/explain”) Old Testament fantasies from the gods (elohim) “creating” the world in six days (Genesis 1, 2) to Peter’s notation that a mortal day may be equal to one thousand years (2 Peter 3:8). 

Mohler fulfills page 13 of the Southern Baptist affirmation of the literal infallibility and correctness of the texts:

“Since God has nowhere promised an inerrant transmission of Scripture, it is necessary to affirm that only the autographic text of the original documents was inspired and to maintain the need of textual criticism as a means of detecting any slips that may have crept into the text in the course of its transmission. The verdict of this science, however, is that the Hebrew and Greek text appears to be amazingly well-preserved, so that we are amply justified in affirming, with the Westminster Confession, a singular providence of God in this matter and in declaring that the authority of Scripture is in no way jeopardized by the fact that the copies we possess are not entirely error-free.

“Similarly, no translation is or can be perfect, and all translations are an additional step away from the autograph. Yet the verdict of linguistic science is that English-speaking Christians, at least, are exceedingly well served in these days with a host of excellent [sic] translations and have no cause for hesitating to conclude that the true Word of God is within their reach. Indeed, in view of the frequent repetition in Scripture of the main matters with which it deals and also of the Holy Spirit’s constant witness to and through the Word, no serious translation of Holy Scripture will so destroy its meaning as to render it unable to make its reader “wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 3:15)” [emphasis mine in bold italics]

The Southern Baptists of today have nothing in common with the eighteenth century Danbury Baptists who petitioned Thomas Jefferson to help them maintain a separation of state of church.  Today, the Southern Baptists openly endorse candidates, contribute to “tearing down the wall” separating church and state (an invocation by Roman Catholic Rick Santorum), and to creating a theocracy of their own making.  The people will become the zombies in their army as witnessed by the generation of the New Apostolic Reformation.

2 comments to Zombies, Matthew 27:52-53, Southern Baptists and reality

  • Tuomo  says:

    Hmmm…interesting., thanks!

  • Jim Thompson  says:

    I thought I had posted my comment on the 16th when I first read the article. Anyway, as I read this, I developed the wryest of smiles. I’ve been a fan of films featuring the walking cannibal dead since the 1968′s Night of the Living Dead and have yet to see a treatment where the walking dead are depicted as the resurrected brethren. There have been reverent folk who believe that their prayers will prevent their loved ones from becoming a hungry revenant, but no film maker has tested the blasphemy that the cannibal dead are the risen followers of Jesus. Brilliant!

Leave a reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.