The gospels, written in Greek-to propagate a religion-are the only source for the life and ministry of Jesus. Christ and his Jewish fishermen followers spoke Aramaic. There is no trustworthy evidence to show that any of these books were in existence before 100 years after the death of Christ. Even Christian scholars, admit that Mark was written sometime around 70 AD, Luke by about 110AD, Matthew by about 130AD, and John by around 140 AD. Hence they could not have been written by Christ’s disciples. As layers and layers were added to the oral stories with elaborations, distortions, additions, interpretations borrowing from here and there we cannot get the faintest outline of who Christ was and what he did or said.
How can something written more than a century after the person they describe lived and died, without any historical document to base what is written, become true? The original gospels no longer exist; they have been lost or destroyed. The oldest existing manuscripts belong to the 6th century which are copies of copies of copies. We do not know who, when and how they were copied.
There were many Gospels in circulation in the early centuries: the "Gospel of Paul," the Gospel of Bartholomew," the "Gospel of Judas Iscariot," the "Gospel of the Egyptians," the "Gospel or Recollections of Peter," the "Oracles or Sayings of Christ," and many others. It is even argued that works were forged in the names of the apostles, and even in the name of Christ. They had many contradictory stories and they were all burnt after the Synod of Trent that accepted the four as canonical. There is absolutely no certainty or reliability about anything found in the Gospels.
There lived many men who bore the name, "Jesus" and many political leaders who had the title "Christ." All the materials necessary for the manufacture of the story of Christ existed too. In all the pagan cultures there were gods born of virgins who performed miracles, gave new teachings, got killed or crucified and who ascended into heaven after resurrection. One could easily fabricate a story like Jesus’ from the literature of the time. The story of Christ was not a new idea.
First or second century historians have not written about Jesus. There are some vague references here and there. Philo who elaborate on even little-known Jewish people do not mention Jesus. Flavius Josephus' writings document John the Baptist, James the Just, and mentions Christ. The Roman historian and senator Tacitus seems to have referred to his execution and the early Christians in Rome in his final work, Annals (written AD 116). Suetonius says there occurred in Rome, during the reign of Emperor Claudius, "persistent disturbances ... at the instigation of ‘Chrestus.’
Matthew says Jesus was born when Herod was the King of Judea. Luke says he was born when Cyrenius was Governor of Syria. Herod died in the year 4 B.C. and Cyrenius,(Quirinius)did not become Governor until ten years later. Herod and Quirinius are separated by the reign of Archelaus, Herod's son. Between Matthew and Luke, there is, thus a gap of ten years, as to the time of Christ's birth. No early Christian knew when Christ was born. X’mas (Dec.25th) was a pagan festival adopted as such. Christians have contrary opinions concerning the year the Messiah appeared on earth. Nobody knew when the Almighty god was born! Was he born at all?
The story of the Immaculate Conception was invented to picture Jesus as a god like Mithras, Attis, Osiris, Horus, Apollonius Dionysus and others. Matthew and Luke give a genealogy of Jesus, the names, and even the number of generations differs between the two-obviously added to show that Jesus is the heir of the promise made to Abraham. But if he was born of a virgin what is the use of giving the genealogy extending to Joseph? What purpose a maternal genealogy would serve in a Jewish (patriarchal) setting? Imaginary works won’t reflect the truth.
Matthew and Luke say Jesus was born in Bethlehem-the city of David- by making Joseph and Mary travel from Nazareth to it, two provinces away for registering in a Roman census.(there is no historical evidence) Even if there was one, only the head of the family had to go and not his fully pregnant wife. His birth is made to happen here to fulfill a prophesy of Micah. The stories of the shepherds and wise men who recognized the child as the son of god are preserved in Mathew and Luke. Remember David himself was a shepherd in the fields of Bethlehem. The narration could have been inserted to show the coming of the Messianic Shepherd from David’s line.
Mathew describes the attempt of Herod to destroy the child and hence Joseph and Mary took flight to Egypt and returned back to Nazareth where they then settled down. If Jesus was recognized as the promised King by the shepherds and Herod, why did he emerge a stranger from Nazareth to begin his ministry? Why didn’t any one recognize him during his public life? Why are the four gospels silent on the thirty years of the life of Jesus? Gospels speak only about his ministry which lasted just one year according to the synoptic gospels and more than two according to John.
John says Jesus was very much in Judea and went to the Temple of Jerusalem often. But other gospels say his ministry was in Galilee and he went to Jerusalem towards the end. Why should one betray Jesus who appeared daily in the streets and preached often in the Temple? The priests would not have bribed a man to betray a teacher whom everybody knew. If the accounts of Christ's betrayal are true, what John writes about his public appearances in Jerusalem must be false.
There are many scholars who doubt the story of Christ's crucifixion. Roman civilization was one of the highest orders in the world. Their courts were models of order and fairness. None was condemned without a trial nor handed to the executioner before being found guilty. The judge Pontius Pilate found him innocent and no charge of wrong doing was brought before him. It looks improbable that a man found innocent could be punished, tortured and crucified. Why did Jews a civilized people of the time want to crucify a man who were working so many miracles and doing only good?