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The Gospel According to Brian


This book has been revised, particularly chapters 8 and 9, and is available in volume form from the publisher, see www.earlofseacliff.co.nz/GospelOfBrian.htm however copies are limited and a reprint will be delayed while further revisions are initiated. The downloads below are now out of date.

This book is essentially research notes for a novel or play, which may never be written. I have been working on this project for about eight years, off and on. I have somewhat reluctantly decided to publish. I am hoping it might promote some discussion and, in a field where strong opinions are the norm, a new look at age old beliefs. The problem is that I am not committed to the Christian religion and have never made an in depth study of it. It is a mass of speculation made in an attempt to make sense of the Passion story that has been received in the gospels.  My assumption is that there was a lot going on that has not been revealed and, by utilising the principles of Dramatic Unity, have attempted to deduce the real story. 

There are several problems with the story of the Passion of Jesus Christ. Many writers have made the comment that it doesn't make sense. The following is a list of questions which the book attempts to answer:

The book is a PDF file in 'readers spread' format. It can be printed on A4, landscape, one side of the paper to give an easy read. (There are 80 sheets and occasionally blank pages between chapters.) While I retain copyright it is permissible to download and and read on the computer or to print out a single copy, but not to distribute or sell.

Click here for the complete book (0.73 MB) or download individual chapters below.

If you have any comments you can email me.

1 Introduction  Outlines my motivations in writing the book, my association with Christianity (or lack of it), and presents the central thesis in general terms.

2  Sources  Describes the gospel and historical sources of our knowledge of Jesus and his times.            

3 History and society Gives a general description of the society in which Jesus lived

4 The characters   Describes the people involved in the story (apart from those in 5,6 and 7.)

5 The Jerusalem Connection   Describes a group of followers resident in Jerusalem who played a crucial part in the story and whose activities appear not to have been fully recorded.

6 Judas Iscariot   A special chapter on this character who is not presented as a traitor.

7 Jesus     Some incomplete notes on a person who means anything and everything.     

8 Barabbas and the two thieves.   A theory as to the involvement of these three characters and the implications regarding the veracity of certain gospel reports.

9 The Gospel According to Brian  The central thesis.

10 Appendices  Notes on some problems involved with the study.