History Channel – Check Your Jesus

There’s been a hashtag game going around on Twitter called #checkyourjesus and it would be fitting to tell The History Channel and the creators of “The Bible” miniseries to check theirs. Last night’s episode introduced Jesus and as someone who worships Jesus as Lord I was quite disturbed by what I saw and heard.

Since part one I’ve been troubled by the lack of faithfulness to the text, the historical inaccuracies and the fact that what some Bible figures say seems incongruous with who they were (Abraham arguing with God instead of fearing him? Moses exclaiming, “You’re real!”). But those issues pale in comparison to what I perceive as minimizing the deity of Jesus in part 3. Last night showed the birth of Jesus and then skipped to his baptism, temptation and then the calling of Peter.

Let’s start with the birth. This is the only section that seemed to indicate Jesus was more than a man. Mary is told that she will be with child and that it will be God’s doing. The Magi told Herod they were searching for one who would be born King of the Jews. And some people turn up to look at the baby Jesus after he’s born. But I didn’t really see much worship. There is no angelic announcement or anything. Like a Christmas without presents, their telling of the first Christmas was a total letdown.

What gets skipped over is his presentation at the temple when both Simeon and Anna are overjoyed because they’ve been waiting for Messiah and they recognize Jesus as the promised one. Then there was time He stayed behind at the temple and Mary and Joseph had to return for him. When chastised Jesus tells his parents,  “Why were you searching for me? Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” Both are clear indicators that Jesus is not just a prophet or some great “leader,” He is the Son of God and the Messiah.

Baptism. The baptism of Jesus was what really upset me because in Scripture John says of the coming Messiah “He will baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Instead on the TV version, the Holy Spirit gets axed and John says “He will baptize with fire.” There is probably no clearer support for the Trinity (One God in three persons, coequal and coeternal) than in the baptism of Jesus by John.

Matthew 3:11-17 says:

11 “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. 14 John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” 15 But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented. 16 And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him,b and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; 17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son,c with whom I am well pleased.”

Sadly, The History Channel version is scrubbed of the Trinity since Jesus is baptized and neither the Spirit descends, nor does God speak from heaven. This is a very significant omission!

Later the episode botches both John’s beheading by Herod (portraying it as politics rather than Herod’s wife’s hatred for John who told them they were sinning) and the call of Peter in which Jesus states his mission to “change the world.” Jesus’ actual mission according to Scripture was to defeat Satan, die on the cross to provide a means of salvation from sin and death to anyone who believes and to be raised from the dead glorifying God.

This miniseries is a wreck theologically. Chris Rosebrough has a done a great job with his Fighting for the Faith podcast exposing the miniseries as being all about “leaders” and “leadership,” while ignoring or failing to explain “redemptive history.” Stand Up for the Truth also has a warning about next week’s episode and what is missing from the last supper. I’ll give you a hint: It’s about Jesus’ claim to exclusivity!

About Julia

Here's what you might like to know about me. My name is Julia and I'm a Christian. I love the Bible and, much less importantly, a good steak. My goal with this site is to share the truth of scripture with believer and non-believer alike, and to specifically encourage believers to study and know the Bible, and warn them of false teachings in and around the church. Romans 1:16-17 "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, the just shall live by faith."
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13 Responses to History Channel – Check Your Jesus

  1. Ben Kilen says:

    The facts are not perfect I agree, remember they are trying to fit the whole bible into 10 episodes I believe. I realize it is no perfect but I’ll take the positives and run.

    1 they are putting the Bible on prime time
    2 twitter and Facebook have lit up over it
    3 people are talking about it outsidevof church
    4 its a better option than_________ (fill in the blank with almost anything else on )
    5 did I mention they are putting the Bible on prime time

    • Julia says:

      If it leads people to a false Jesus or a false gospel it is not good for anyone. It’s emphasis is not on honoring God, showing people they are sinners in need of a savior and pointing them to the savior: Jesus Christ.

  2. Dawna says:

    Julia,

    I was raised in an evangelical home so your take on Jesus is very familiar but also very sad to me. If God is real and powerful, the History Channel doesn’t stand a chance in disrupting the transmission of his message. The groups referenced here have diminished God to some extremely fragile being who needs the support of techno-Christians to get every fact correct in order for the message to come through. Nothing about that is Divine to me. If you take a step back at how these folks are spending their time and energy, ask yourself – is this really what Jesus would be doing?? I don’t see anything in his example that would support these activities and this obsession with how certain groups think the story ought to be told.

    You are a beautiful spirit who cares deeply, and I tell you the truth: There is absolutely no detail in a miniseries that matters in the face of overwhelming love. Jesus taught ALL of us (not just certain groups of evangelicals) to love the Lord God with all our heart , our soul and our mind. And then he told us to love others as He loves us. My suggestion, based on my own experience of caring deeply and wanting others to understand, is to focus on being effective….not being right. It is “Christians” like these groups referenced in your posts that drove me away from Jesus, not toward him.

  3. I would rather not watch it just based on the violation of the Second Commandment, and making images of Christ. But I realize my convictions are quite rare. I didn’t watch the Passion of Christ for the same reason. The Jesus I know is the One found in Scripture, not from the imaginations of someone like Mel Gibson, or the folks putting on the Bible series.

    • Ben Kilen says:

      I did not watch The Last Temptation of Christ because of the blatant bias that was pushing the blasphemy side. I have only watched bits and pieces of The History Channels account of the Bible. What I appreciate about it whether it is 50%, 80% or 0% accurate is the fact that it has bwwn a conversation starter. I haven’t had to bring up or work myself into a conversation, people who would never talk about God unless it was in a swearing rant have started the conversation.

      That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. ..

  4. Why did they say that Jesus worships God, when Jesus rebuked satan

    • Julia says:

      I thought I saw that too, but couldn’t rewatch it to make sure so I didn’t point it out. That absolutely tears down’s Jesus’ divinity.

  5. marcusmaxis says:

    Son Of God

    Who is Jesus of Nazareth? When He walked upon this earth over nineteen hundred years ago He asked His disciples: “Whom do men say that I, the Son of man am?” They answered that some declared Him to be John the Baptist, while others claimed that He was Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He said to His disciples, “But whom say ye that I am?” (Matt. 16:15). Here we find the correct answer as to whom Jesus is. The man who knows and believes this and can give this answer from the depth of his heart in spirit and in truth is blessed. He has had revelation from heaven through the Word of truth. Hear the answer of truth! “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt. 16:16). Unless we come without any strings attached, without any wresting or twisting of these words, and believe them just as they are stated, we cannot know the living God. Neither do we understand His plan of salvation.

    “Thou art the Christ,” means, “Thou art the Anointed One.” Now those who contend that Jesus was God Himself or the High God can never believe that Jesus was the Anointed One. Why? Those who advocate that Jesus is God Himself claim there is a triune God and therefore is equal to and co-existent with God the Father.

    In Acts 10:38 we find these words: “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power.” Let us think honestly and clearly before God. If Jesus were God Himself or part of a trinity Godhead, equal and co-existent with two other parts in a God head of three, it would be impossible for Him to be anointed by any one of the other two. That would make one of them greater than He. The Bible clearly states that “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power.” If God had not anointed Jesus with the Holy Ghost and with power, could He ever have accomplished anything worthy of mention? How many sins could He have forgiven? How many sick could He have healed? Could He have raised the dead? You see, Jesus was not God, but was the Son of God and was dependent upon His Father. (John 5:19-21)

    Now hear the Word of the Lord. It may change your theology; it may destroy what you have believed for years; but it is the truth. John 5:19 states, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do.” Look closely at this for a moment. If Jesus were God Himself, or even equal with God, then Jesus could do nothing of Himself and neither could God. Someone will say that He can do what He sees the Father do. That is true. Jesus can do what He sees His Father do, but if they are equal, God must also see His father act before He is able to do His wonderful acts. God has no father. Even a child prejudiced to the teachings of men can see the error in this line of thought.

    John 5:20 states, “The Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.” Now if Jesus were God Himself, or equal with God, and had been with God from all eternity, would God have to show Him the works that He did? Friends, the doctrines of the trinity and of the pre-existence are doctrines of the devils that are to destroy men’s faith in the true God and in Jesus His Son.

    In John 5:26 and 27, we read, “As the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.” Now you either believe this or you deny it. Notice, the Father has life in Himself. God only has immortality, but how did Jesus get life? The Father gave it to Him, both natural life through birth, and immortality through a resurrection. If Jesus were God Himself or equal with God, God could not give Him life, for He would already have it even as the Father has it . Then again, how did Jesus get His authority to execute judgment? Hear again the Word of God. God gave it to Him. Could Jesus be as great as the Father, if the Father is the one who anointed Him with power and gave Him life and gave Him His authority? The only reason Jesus has the authority He now has is because God gave it to Him.

    In John 5:30 Jesus repeats again, “I can of mine own self do nothing.” Could Jesus do anything of Himself alone? He said He could of His own self do nothing. Did God ever do anything by Himself? In Isaiah 44:24 it is said of God, “I am the Lord that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by myself.” Many say that Jesus helped to create the earth or that He was the Creator, but here the speaker said, “I stretched forth the heavens alone and spread abroad the earth by myself.” Jesus said, “I can of mine own self do nothing.” The disciples of Christ knew full well that Jesus was not God, neither any part of a trinity Godhead, but was the Son of God, begotten by the Spirit and power of God according to the Word of God born of the virgin Mary. Born – really born – not incarnated, but born!

    I would like to say here that the words “God the Son”, “pre-existent” , “trinity” , and “incarnate” are nowhere found in the Bible. They are terms put to use by the satanic host to deceive ministers and churchgoers and to rob them of ever knowing the real Son of God. This is what Peter had reference to in 2 Peter 2:1 when he said, “There shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.”

    Friends, do you deny the Lord that bought you? Do you know which Lord bought you? It could not be God Himself, for God cannot die. It cannot be a trinity Christ, for He would be equal with God. Since God cannot die, neither could a trinity Christ. The Scriptures declare that Christ died for our sins. (1 Cor. 15:3) According to the Scriptures, the Son of God, born of a virgin, brought into existence by the power of God, being anointed with life from God, power and authority from God, died for our sins, thus giving His entire life for us. But, thanks be to God, He raised Him up from the dead.

    The world, by accepting the pre-existent theory and the doctrine of the trinity, deny the flesh and bones that God caused to be born to be our Savior. Dear friends, if you deny the flesh and bones that God caused to come forth to life from Mary’s womb, you deny the Lord that bought you. This is what Jesus had reference to when He said that many false Christs would arise and deceive, not a few, but many. Today more people believe and pay tribute to and glorify and pray to a false Christ, who never did die for them, than they that accept a flesh-and-bones Savior who died on a tree for our sins. The false Christ is the pre-existent Christ, the trinity Christ, the Christ that is said to be God Himself. The true Christ is the Son of the living God and the anointed of Him.

    In John 6:57 we find, “As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father.” Notice that the living Father sent the Son. Could one God be equal with another when one was sent of the other? Notice also Jesus said, “I live by [and through] the Father.” Without the Father, Jesus never would have existed and had life.

    In John 7:16 Jesus said, “My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.” If Jesus were God Himself or a part of a trinity God, how could He say, “My doctrine is not mine” ? If Jesus were equal to the Father and the doctrine He was giving was not His, does Jesus have a doctrine just as equal and powerful and strong as the doctrine of His Father? And does the Holy Spirit also have another doctrine? Would their doctrines be the same or different?

    Jesus gave us to know that He had nothing to do with the origin of the doctrines which He spoke. They originated with the Father, and the Son spoke the doctrines of the Father. In John 7:28 Jesus said, “Ye both know me, and ye know whence I am: and I am not come of myself, but he that sent me is true, whom ye know not.” If Jesus were God Himself, would He not have had to send Himself? He said, “I am not come of myself.” Friend, did you or I come of ourself? We had nothing to do with it. We did not come into existence by our will, for we had no will, no life, no intellect, until we were born. The same is true of Christ. Jesus did not come of Himself, but God sent Him. If there were three equal Gods, why would one God send another one of the other two to die? If one could send one of the other two to die, would not the one that had power to send be greater? When God spoke of Jesus in the old testament he said: Deuteronomy 18:18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee (Moses), and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. Deuteronomy 18:19 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him. Jesus spoke Gods words that he himself gave to him. 1 Chronicles 22:10 He shall build an house for my name; and he shall be my son, and I will be his father; and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel for ever. Hebrews 1:5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?

    In John 8:28 Jesus said, “I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.” When one God has to be taught of another God, the God that does the teaching would be the greater. If Jesus were co-equal with God and co-existent with Him, He would not have to be taught from the Father.

    Again, Jesus said in John 8:42, “I proceed forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.” Jesus told us in John 10:18, “I have power to lay it [my life] down, and I have power to take it again. ” Where did He get this power? He said, “This commandment have I received of my Father.” When one person gives another person commandments, one is supreme to the other. Jesus said in John 10:29, “My Father … is greater than all. “1 Corinthians 11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

    Friends, do you not understand that Jesus is the anointed flesh and bones which God brought forth to life by His Holy Spirit, His own power, and that there is no other Savior of truth who could die for us? First John 2:22 says, “Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Anointed One?” Friend, if you contend that Jesus is God Himself, or a part of a trinity God, or a pre-existent Jesus, with power to create before He was born, then He could never be anointed by the Father.

    Understand this, “He is antichrist that denieth the Father and Son.” The Father is God and Jesus Christ is His Son, born of the virgin by the power of God. They are two separate and different beings. Anyone who denies this is antichrist. Which side are you on?

    May God help you to believe in His Son, even as the Ethiopian eunuch, who said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”

    1JN 4:15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.

    1JN 5:5 Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

    1JN 5:10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

    1JN 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

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