Is Christianity Based on Earlier Pagan Myths?

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Was Jesus’ resurrection fabricated?  A story copied from an earlier version of a pagan god rising from the dead?

Short answer:  Nope.

Longer answer: listen to podcast and watch videos below

Episode 1: The Historical Jesus – Thomas Wayment

A prominent NT scholars wrote this: “Why the “Mythical Jesus” claim has no traction with scholars”


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People who believe Jesus didn’t live or that his story was based on myths are referred to as mythicists.  They believe that a dying-and-rising god was a common motif in ancient religious systems with pagan gods.  And that the Jesus figure was simply a Jewish version of this.

Several videos below refute this mythicist claim.  The figure below lists several of their (unsupported, spurious) claims:  Jesus was little different from these other pagan gods.

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Richard Carrier is a leader among those who believe Jesus was mythical.  Bart Ehrman, himself an atheist and perhaps the world’s most famous New Testament scholar, argues Jesus lived.  Ehrman explains that Jesus lived because historians know this from the documents historians have at their disposal.

Bart’s not a believing Christian.  In fact, Bart (falsely, in my view) argues that Jesus wasn’t considered God till a while after his death.  We believe otherwise.  But at least Bart affirms that Jesus lived and his crucifixion and resurrection stories have no connection to earlier pagan myths.

William Lane Craig, a born-again Christian, responds to a question on this topic:


Story of Jesus copied from the Egyptian Horus myth?  Horus was Isis’ mother.

Was Jesus a mythic copy of the Persian God Mythra?

Was Jesus copied from the Greek god Dionysus?

Was Jesus copied from the Egyptian god Serapis?

Was Jesus’ story taken from the myth of Greek god Attis?

Connection to the Hindu god Krishna?

Other religious movements and cults were certainly based on myths.  We believe the life and resurrection of Jesus was based on actual events.

Ehrman and Bauckman debate whether the New Testament was based eyewitnesses. No myths involved. Oral histories from still-living eyewitnesses.