Who Framed Jesus?

I can tell that Easter is near.  Every year about this time, several television specials and news magazines focus on the fact that Christians still believe in Jesus even though they should not.  In about a week, expect Time Magazine (or its equivalent) to run a cover story on how/why the resurrection could not have possibly taken place.  Predictably, they will claim Jesus either 1) did not die  2) stayed dead, or 3) was never alive in the first place.  Each year, several media outlets predict an end to Christian faith, despite the fact that each year there are still billions of Christians around the world.

Tonight Discovery will ask Who Framed Jesus?  Here is their own synopsis:

Who Framed Jesus?

TV-PG (V)

For two thousand years, blame for the murder of Jesus has rested squarely on the shoulders of Judas Iscariot and the Jewish High Priest. This gritty crime thriller exposes all-new suspects and asks whether we have condemned the wrong men?

First notice that Jesus was murdered.  They carefully did not use the word crucified, nor did they say he died or was killed.  I can’t even imagine who their all-new suspects are going to be, but the t.v. spots have been asking who else (besides Judas and the Sanhedrin) had a motive.  Then finally, have we condemned the wrong men?

So exactly what is my problem?  There’s an old saying that’s no such thing as bad publicity.  It is true that the reason t.v. and news mags cover this story each year is that billions of people in the world still profess Christian faith after 2,000 years.  Drawing attention to that fact gets the name and face (tongue in check) of Jesus in front of people, forcing them to make a decision of some type.  But the intent is always to undermine.  The goal of each story, expose and investigation is always to turn us away from placing faith in the Gospel story.  The goal is always to convince us: Jesus was not the Son of God, there was no resurrection, the crucifixion did not mean anything, Jesus never claimed to be the Messiah, the disciples made the whole thing up, the Romans created Christianity in order to spread their empire and so on.  There are multiple conspiracy theories, many of which conflict with the others, but it doesn’t matter.  The end result is meant to be that no one believes this scriptural truth:  GOD FRAMED JESUS.

In his sermon on Pentecost (Acts 2) Peter points out that while Jesus died at the hands of evil men, they were simply fulfilling God’s plan.  Compare the following passage from Acts 2 to Isaiah 53:

Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men.  God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.  -Acts 2: 22-24

Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him;
he has put him to grief;  -Isaiah 53:10

The entire chapter 53 is a detailed description of the crucifixion, written down a thousand years beforehand.  Crucifixion was the Roman method of execution; recall that the Jews stoned offenders to death.  Isaiah wrote this account before Roman power had taken over the Mediterranean world.  Inspired by God to write, he might not have even understood what he was talking about.

The crucifixion of Jesus was according to God’s will, and fulfilled God’s plan of salvation.  For further study, try Hebrews 9. When Peter drew his sword at Gethsemane,  Jesus himself told him to put it away.  He delivered himself into the hands of  his captors.  Pilate did not wish to crucify Jesus, and tried to talk the Jewish mob out of it.  He prodded Jesus to say something in defense of himself.  Herod only wanted to see some sign or magic trick, and sent the crowd away.  Judas relented of the evil he had done, and tried to give the money back to the priests.  The same Jews who cried Hosanna a week earlier now called for the death of Jesus; and there was nothing anyone could have done differently to stop it. The Bible tells us clearly who framed Jesus:  God framed Jesus.


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23 thoughts on “Who Framed Jesus?

  1. Jesus is eternally the only begotten Son of God, so says the Nicene Creed, predating the revisionist history taught by the movie Constantine. All 4 Gospels, the Book of Acts, and several letters of Paul proclaim that Jesus is the Son of God. It wasn’t just John. Finally, the authority of the Bible as the inerrant word of God is not an issue we will debate on this blog.

  2. I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
    the Maker of heaven and earth,
    and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:

    From the Apostles Creed, even older than the Nicene, possibly 2nd Century.

  3. I know that Jesus is the Son of God and my Saviour, and that no one can come to the Father except through Jesus.

    Dan’s comment has been edited by the moderator. Commenting is encouraged, but play nice. -The Master’s Table

  4. Jesus drew the lot – passing the bread to the disiple he chose to be the one to do the job. Jesus passed the lot to Judas
    It could have been another…..Go do that….
    Judas was obediant to the death as the traitor.

  5. Nice article! I agree. I respect Bart Ehrman as a scholar, but he’s not exactly mainstream. The documentary didn’t really hold my interest. It was basically the same thing repeated by skeptics everywhere. It would be nice to see a follow-up to this article as a more thorough refutation of some of the claims.

  6. I have never been so repulsed by a television show. The show ‘Who Framed Jesus’, was not even “fair and balanced”. It was clearly everything you said it would be! It was a hate filled attempt at belittling Christians who have placed their faith in Christ.

    I noticed that all through the show it kept telling us that this show was being presented by ‘TARGET’. If this is true then shouldn’t Bible believing Christians boycott such a company that would intentionally offend in such a bold and ugly way? I would love to know more about this!!!

  7. @ K: Jesus did not choose Judas to betrey him. Jesus knew that it was going to happen, and was answering the question who would it be that did it. Judas relented of the evil he had done, and tried to return the money to the priests. Unable to cope, he later went out and hung himself.

  8. interesting time discussing possibilities especially Herrod Antipas desire….but Jesus knew before he came to earth the role he would play…..Judas simply was chosen as the role of traitor when Jesus passed the bread to him, as the lot chosen to go and do that…….Judas obeyed. God framed the thing from the beginning of time for salvation of human race. But human intrigue and intervention reveals our human desire to control and blame anyone but …..God….which takes belief on our parts and admission that God is soverign .

  9. The commenter K and I disagree about the betrayal of Jesus by Judas, which is fine. It seems that K is insisting Judas was chosen at the last supper to be the traitor. On the other hand, I contend that Judas was going to betray Jesus, and that Jesus simply pointed out the he was aware. He even revealed who the traitor was. Consider verses 2 and 3 from John 13:

    “During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper.”

    Betrayal was in the heart of Judas, but it was not Jesus that put it there.

  10. “‘This is what has come true: in this very city Herod and Pontius Pilate plotted together with the gentile nations and the peoples of Israel, against your holy servant Jesus whom you anointed, “- Acts of Apostles 4:27 This is what I believe: God did not frame jesus. God sent Jesus to deliver the message of salvation through him. But God (Jesus) knew the hearts of men, just like he does now. So Jesus could sense people’s hearts and what was there, or lack of it. That’s how he knew the plan God had would get derailed by evil men. Jesus kept saying “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” He came to establish the Kingdom. Had it not been for the evil in the hearts of men, he would have succeeded, the Jews would have recognized him as the Messiah, and the kingdom of heaven would have been fullfilled.

  11. One more thing. I had a revelation when I was watching this documentary.

    The “two Pontius Pilots” they refer to. are one and the same.

    It is possible that Herod and Pilot did plot together to crucify Jesus, and Judas, tempted by the devil got in on it. However, once in the actual presence of God himself, when it came down to do the actual act during the trial, when God is looking at you in the eye and says those historic words “I AM” as God said to the prophet Moses himself, they probably got weak in their knees. Pilot realizing this REALLY is God, found himself in a very precarious position.

  12. JZK said “Had it not been for the evil in the hearts of men, he would have succeeded…”

    This implies that at some level God is a failure. Or perhaps that God’s plan failed, indicating he had not planned well or that man is more evil than God realized. All of these options are problematic. No, God’s plan of salvation was for Jesus to be offered as a sacrifice.

    The Passover in the book of Exodus; Abraham offering his only son Isaac; the brass serpent lifted up by Moses in the wilderness; the prophesies of Isaiah, namely chp. 53. All of these Old Testament passages make sense in light of Jesus’s crucifixion. Think back to his birth. The wise men brought gold, frankincense and myrrh. Offering myrrh to a newborn baby doesn’t make any sense at all, unless we recognize that his death is being foreshadowed. He came into the world to die on the cross. The wrath of God was poured out on Jesus when he became sin for us on the cross. This was the plan of God for salvation before the foundation of the world.

  13. I’m not arguing with you jzk. Just think about how much better this way works out.

    God knew that his son Jesus would be offered up as a sacrifice, and he sent him anyway. That’s how much he loves you and I. Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin. Jesus is a better sacrifice than the blood of bulls and turtledoves, and is a better high priest than those of the Old Testament. God’s plan didn’t fail; the plotting of those men against Jesus brought about God’s plan.

    Why did God choose such a plan of salvation? “The preaching of the cross is foolishness to those that perish, but to those of us being saved it is the power of God.” He chose what seems like foolishness to confound the wisdom of this world. (1 Corinthians chp 1).

  14. I was flipping through the channels late Tuesday night, and I came across an episode of Nightline entitled “Does God Have a Future?” The show posed this question due to mankind’s growth in science and technology. Basically, do we need God when we can accomplish so much on our own?

    The episode took the form of a debate between an atheist scholar, I forget his name, and renowned spiritual quack, Deepok Chopra, who was the inspiration for Mike Myer’s “The Love Guru.” Needless to say, whenever God was mentioned in the debate, He was framed as this cosmic catch-all who in any “spiritual” person could believe. At no point was the true Christian God ever discussed.

    What I found funny was the notion that God was somebody that we as a culture and society could phase out. Like God is worried about what we can do to Him. Anyway, I’m sure video of the debate can be found on hulu or abc.com. I thought this programming fell in line with the above “Who Framed Jesus?” I, personally, would rather watch “Who Framed Roger Rabbit.” At least Roger Rabbit seems to be grounded in reality.

  15. Abraham sons…jjudith sold hes brother joseph as a slave…whoever they are they always blame Judith…so the crusadors came out to kill the jews even though they are not allowed to kill…Christians are the only that knew about the false messiah…jews belive they deal with God…i personally believe Jesus did not die on the cross rather it was the person who tried to snitch on Jesus…right before the very eyes…God took Jesus and will return him again to destroy what the Roman left in this world…the royal bloodline goes back to the Romans plus cleopatra the last pheroah shagd julios cesor so the evil remains

  16. I have allowed Ragsta’s comment, but that does not mean I agree with everything he says.

    1) Who is Judith? That’s a woman’s name. And those aren’t Abraham’s sons, they’re Jacob’s. 2) The Crusaders did not come to kill the Jews, they came to kill the Muslims. The Jews had been driven out of Jerusalem in 70 a.d. by the Romans. 3) Jesus died on the cross. Jesus died on the cross, your personal beliefs notwithstanding. That point is not up for contention on this blog.

  17. its obviously alot of fake things going on about everything for instance you are half of what your father and your mother was right? so if jesus was the true son of god in a paternal sense then he would be half god half man or demi god since god says there are no other gods or demi gods and the 1st commandment tells us the same then those that profess jesus as gods son do not believe in the true god nor follow his commandments its a fallacy in itself i just wish people with common sense would take a step back and realize like i did how illogical and blasphemous it is to say jesus was his only son ( in a paternal sense). god planned even the twists and turns and the evil around us so that we may be tested to prove our worth and devotion to god before he rewards us. he gave us everything and gave everything us now to follow suite and obay his commands

  18. For 33 1/2 years Jesus was a man. He was, is and always shall be God. Jesus is not half anything.

    He said in John 8:58 “Before Abraham was, I am.” I am is almost a play on words; on the one hand it is almost the name of God, as in when he told Moses to say to Pharaoh “I AM has sent you.” It also indicates his existing before, during, and after time. I Am indicates present tense during every time period. Don’t rely on common sense to steer you in the right direction. The preaching of the cross is foolishness… to them that perish.

  19. American culture is as bad or worse. People copy and paste messages in Facebook without knowing or caring if the information is true.

    Thanks for commenting!

  20. Guys do you want to say that Jesus was God him self who came to earth, if he was just a son of God, then there’s a lot of questions to answer .

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