Berlin (Nov. 14)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
Blasphemy proceedings were instituted by the Berlin authorities against Dr. Werner Hegemann, author and philosopher, a member of the Evangelical Church, for asserting that Jesus of Nazareth was not crucified. Leading liberal newspapers in Germany criticized today the action of the authorities for instituting the suit. In a book recently published, entitled “The Saved Christ,” Hegemann evolves a new theory concerning the origin of Christianity and puts a new interpretation on the scenes recorded in the New Testament as having occurred before the palace of the Roman procurator, Pontius Pilate, when he sat in judgment.
Jesus was not crucified. Barrabas never existed. The crowd of Jews which assembled in front of the palace, according to the Gospels, implored Pilate to free Jesus who was known among the people of Judea as “the son of man.” In the Aramaic vernacular, they shouted “Give us Bar-Nash (the son of man).” Pilate then conceded the request of the people and set the prisoner free. Jesus continued his teachings and died a natural death some time later.
Because of erroneous transliteration in the narratives which sprang up later, the Aramaic cry of the Jerusalem crowd “Give us Bar-Nash,” became “Give us Bar-Abas.” This confusion gave rise to the later narratives that Barabas was granted elemency by the Roman procurator while Jesus was crucified. This is how, Dr. Hegemann asserts, the legend of the crucifixion of Jesus grew.