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4.0 out of 5 stars Augustus the wicked priest, April 19, 2011
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This review is from: Jesus and Gospel (Hardcover)
I have read the book with rapt attention and have found it extremely thought-provoking. In the preface the author states that he became dissatisfied with the standard answers. This is what I have always felt and I admire the author for not beating the trodden path. However, I think it may be useful to other readers to briefly pose some questions of a historical nature.

The oldest Christian establishments mentioned by St. Paul were at Lystra, Derbe, Antioch in Pisidia etc. But surprisingly there is a haunting presence of one Amyntas or Amen in all these places. Who was this Amyntas or Amen, whose palace was at Isauria? Rev. iii. 14 clearly hints that Amen was a name of Jesus. Prof. Stanton states that in the early post-Easter period, the Gospel of Jesus was heard against the backdrop of a rival set of `gospels' concerning the imperial cult of Augustus. This agrees with my general perception on the subject. I see Augustus as Jesus' main enemy. The point of contention was the title `son of god' which Augustus wanted to be reserved for himself. Prof. Stanton is wrong in assuming that Augustus (63 B.C.-19AD) is far older than Jesus. I have proposed that Jesus' true name was 'Amen' and that King Amyntas of Galatia was Jesus. This makes Jesus (born 58 B.C.) an younger contemporary of Augustus. He may have been crucified in 26/25 B.C. The author writes about the temple of Augustus in Antioch (Pisidian) but ignores Amyntas. This is shallow scholarship. Most interestingly, Prof. Stanton places Paul in Antiochia Pisidia but Stephen Mitchell writes that Augustus destroyed the temple of MÁn AskaÁnos at Antiochia Pisidia which was linked to king Amyntas of Galatia. Mitchell also writes that the people of the temple cannot be seen to have done anything to deserve such punishment. Curiously another Amyntas is known from India whose coins belong almost to the same time-slot. Amyntas may also have been seen as an enemy by Augustus. Moreover Amyntas was the son of the chief priest of the famous Pessinus temple. Mitchell accepts that Amyntas had bequeathed his kingdom to Rome in a will but most others, including Syme say that Augustus annexed Amyntas' kingdom. Prof. Stanton also examines the earliest criticisms of Jesus and claims concerning his resurrection. Was Augustus behind that too? Prof. Stanton follows Mitchell in linking Sergeius Paullus with Paul. I tend to disagree. In my scheme Paul was Gaius Asinius Pollio (76 B.C.- 4 AD). The Encyclopedia Britannica states that there is no evidence for Paul outside the gospels but this appears to be false if Asinius Pollio is seen as Paul. I could go on and on but I must admit Prof. Stanton has opened the doors to many interesting questions.
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Jesus and Gospel
Jesus and Gospel by Graham Stanton (Paperback - August 2, 2004)
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