No matter the holiday, at least the Christian ones, our ‘educational’ channels which we pay for as consumers, like to pick apart those believes that we hold dear. Granted, it’s almost expected now. It’s like the Christmas lights – you just have to have them. This year, there is a move to undermine the ‘historical Jesus.’ Suddenly, everyone got it wrong, and history is a grand conspiracy by men in white hats.
Biblical scholar Rachel Havrelock is a MythBuster in her own right, dispelling popular beliefs about Christianity. The University of Illinois at Chicago professor traveled to the Holy Land to co-host the Discovery Channel documentary “Who Was Jesus?” which premiers April 5, Palm Sunday.
Havrelock recently sat down to speak with Discovery News’ Jennifer Viegas about the historical Jesus, what she feels are some common misconceptions, and the role women played during Christianity’s earliest years.
Discovery News: What do you think is the most common misconception today about the Bible and its teachings?
Rachel Havrelock: That it was meant to present a very conservative, traditional viewpoint. You must remember that the concept of God was, and perhaps still is, a radical social idea. Rather than being beholden to an oligarchy, an individual can now answer to a deity. It created the possibility of an egalitarian society.
The core of Jesus’ message was directed to the economically downtrodden, the poor farmers, laborers and others who had little power in their own lives. Jesus presented a radical social proposition that meant society could be reconfigured to allow for less inequity and more sharing.