Jesus was Shapeshifter and Invisible, Newly Deciphered Ancient Egyptian Text Claims
An ancient Egyptian text was newly deciphered, revealing a rather eyebrow-raising interpretation of the event of Jesus' crucifixion.
The 1,200-year-old text also claims that Jesus was a shapeshifter , sometimes invisible.
Roelof van den Broek, a researcher from the Utrecht University in the Netherlands, published the translation of the text in the book "Pseudo-Cyril of Jerusalem on the Life and the Passion of Christ."
The text written in the Coptic language, which was reportedly written by Cyril of Jerusalem, a saint from 4th century, tells story of Jesus' crucifixion with apocryphal twists, some of them completely unprecedented.
In an attempt to explain why why Judas used a kiss to betray Jesus, the text claims that Jesus possessed the ability to change shape, and that Judas kissed Jesus in order to prevent the Son of God from performing any shapeshifting trick.
"Then the Jews said to Judas: How shall we arrest him [Jesus], for he does not have a single shape but his appearance changes. Sometimes he is ruddy, sometimes he is white, sometimes he is red, sometimes he is wheat coloured, sometimes he is pallid like ascetics, sometimes he is a youth, sometimes an old man…" the translation reads.
In another part, it alleges that Pontius Pilate had dinner with Jesus before his crucifixion and offered to sacrifice his own son instead of Jesus.
"Without further ado, Pilate prepared a table and he ate with Jesus on the fifth day of the week. And Jesus blessed Pilate and his whole house," the text reads in part, according to Live Science.
Pilate tells Jesus, "well then, behold, the night has come, rise and withdraw, and when the morning comes and they accuse me because of you, I shall give them the only son I have so that they can kill him in your place."
Despite the incredible generosity of Pilate, Jesus declined the offer, telling the secular judge that he could run away if he chose to.
"Oh Pilate, you have been deemed worthy of a great grace because you have shown a good disposition to me," says Jesus in the translation.
"Pilate, then, looked at Jesus and, behold, he became incorporeal: He did not see him for a long time," it says, leaving the readers' imagination to soar as to whether Jesus revealed his miraculous power to Pilate.
As Jesus was crucified, Pilate and his wife allegedly saw visions of an eagle that died, representing Jesus.
The Egyptian text also claims that the day of the arrest of Jesus was Tuesday evening instead of Thursday evening, which would alter the date of Easter, one of most important events in Christian calendar.
In the face of all the unbelievable claims the text makes, van der Broek said that the text could be merely a reflection of what people believed back then.
Whole some in the monastery may have believed it, "in particular the more simple monks," the researcher is doubtful if the writer of the text did.
"I find it difficult to believe that he really did, but some details, for instance the meal with Jesus, he may have believed to have really happened," says van den Broek, according to Live Science.
"The people of that time, even if they were well-educated, did not have a critical historical attitude. Miracles were quite possible, and why should an old story not be true?"
The text was stored in the library of the Monestary of St Michael, until JP Morgan bought it in 1911 later gifted it to the Morgan Library and Museum in New York, where van den Broek encountered it.