The Jesus Papers: Exposing the Greatest Cover-Up in History
is a book by author Michael Baigent published in 2006. Providing his detailed history of Jesus’ life and crucifixion; using papers that, according to the author, were covered up. The book documents the political context of Jesus’ birth, and then goes on to examine the history of the migration of the family of Jesus, the chronicles of his teachings, and his death.
In The Jesus Papers, author Michael Baigent claims that after having been taken down alive from the Cross, Jesus was removed from the tomb at night by Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, then smuggled away to Egypt along with his wife, Mary Magdalene. They moved to Narbonne in the south of France in AD 38, following unrest in Cairo, close to where they had settled (in or near the Temple of Onias). Other Jewish families had settled in Narbonne claiming descent from King David.
Michael Baigent claims the source of Bérenger Saunière’s wealth was derived from his knowledge and discovery that this was all historically factual, after the priest had found hidden documents (also taking for granted that the source of the priest’s wealth was mysterious). Baigent argues that Station XIV of the Cross in the church of Rennes-le-Château, showing a Full Moon, indicates that the Sabbath/Passover had begun, and showing Joseph of Arimathea carrying the live body of Jesus out of the tomb.
Michael Baigent claims to have seen two papyrus documents – the “Jesus papers” – written in Aramaic, discovered in the Old City of Jerusalem during the 1960s. Baigent claimed these documents dated to AD 45 and were letters to the Sanhedrin from bani meshiha (“the Messiah of the Children of Israel”), defending himself against the allegation that he claimed to be the Son of God.
Baigent claims these two papyrus documents were authenticated by the Israeli archaeologists Yigael Yadin and Naham Avigad, which distressed Pope John XXIII. The Pope asked Baigent’s friend to destroy these two papyrus documents, but he refused and said he would release them after 25 years. However, the documents have not been released because of the rift this information would create between Israel and the Vatican, also creating a revivalism of Antisemitism.
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