Some two thousand years ago, in a small province of the Roman Empire, an obscure Roman governor ordered the execution of a peasant leader. It went virtually unnoticed at the time. No official report of the event has survived, and we would have no memory at all of it except for the efforts of a handful of followers of the condemned man. Those followers who kept that memory alive changed the course of history, and the results of their efforts continue to reverberate to this day. Conventional interpretation says that the execution of Jesus of Nazareth came on the heels of a series illegal trials before a number of different tribunals, and at the culmination of that series of trials a moral coward by the name of Pontius Pilate ordered Jesus' execution despite being satisfied that he was innocent. Revisionist interpretation says that there was no trial at all, that Pilate simply executed Jesus because he was a nuisance, and that Jesus followers invented the story of his execution as a means of shifting the blame from the Roman government to a group of people whom they despised -- the Jews. Are the Gospels good history or bad propaganda? Does a fair reading of the Gospel accounts support either the conventional or the revisionist interpretation of the trial of Jesus? Who, if anyone, should shoulder the blame for the crucifixion of Jesus? The Case against Christ seeks to answer these questions by treating the matter as a forensic death investigation and answering the questions as they might be answered by a prosecutor attempting to determine who should be held criminally responsible for the death of Jesus.
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