Index Page
How Jesus Became Christian - by Barrie Wilson
(Course Archive)
"What Christianity achieved in the post-Constantine fourth-century era represented the marketing victory of all times. It is especially ironic that a movement that started off as a radical challenge to the Pax Romana succeeded in becoming the official religion of the Roman Empire. ... But the victory came at a tremendous price. Simply put, the teachings of Jesus himself were smothered by the religion of Paul." ... p255

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  Course Outline and Links to the 10 Session Pages 
Material is added steadily through the course.   As it is found and presented and written, blue links will appear below.
Session Theme Chapter Readings Presenter
1 Introductory Evening. Introductions.
Introducing the author's thesis - how the religion of Jesus became instead, a religion about Jesus.
Prologue - A Personal Note
Ch 1 - The Cover Up
2 The Times - How empire, culture and "globalization" shaped the world of Jesus. Ch 2 - Cultures in Conflict
Ch 3 - Being Jewish in a Cosmopolitan World
Ch 4 - The Secrets of History
3 Jesus - Who was he, and what did he do and say? Ch 5 - The Challenge of Jesus
Ch 6 - The Promises of Jesus
4 The Jesus Movement and the Jerusalem Church
The Didache and how it tells us of these matters.
Ch 7 - Jesus's Earliest Followers: The Jesus Movement
Ch 8 - What Happened To Jesus?
5 Paul - His Revelation and Mission
Luke - How Acts bridged Jerusalem to Rome
Ch 9 - The Trouble With Paul
Ch 10 - The Big Switch: Christ for Jesus
6 The Jesus Movement - isolated from Christian and Jew
Paul - Replacing Torah Practice with Christ Belief
Ch 11 - The Jesus Movement Fades Away
Ch 12 - Paul the Radical
7 The Ancient Roots of Anti-Semitism in the Church Ch 13 - Demonizing Jewish Leadership and the Jewish People
Ch 14 - Confiscating Judaism's Heritage
Ch 15 - Attacking the Jewish Concept of God
Ch 16 - Anti-Semitism
8 The Cover-Up Thesis. What it means Now. Ch 17 - The Cover-Up Revealed
The Epilogue - The Way Forward
and Deb
9 Other Scholarly Voices - The history of the church has been one of constant change. Different understanding have come about our most ancient traditions and our most current obligations in faith and community. Marcus Borg and John D Crossan have just co-authored a book First Paul that looks at this early figure in church history. Some video and textual introduction to this is given in preparation to the teleconference with Dr. Borg next week. Wayne
and Jock
10 Transcription of Teleconference with Special Guest, Marcus Borg on the subject of Paul. and the early church. Tele- Conference
11 Guest Speaker. Dr. Eliezer Segal "The Jewish Festivals and How They Help Us to Live Our Faith" Dr. Segal teaches at the U of C in the Faculty of Religious Studies. Dr. Segal
12 Guest Speaker. Mr Kamal Botros "The Coptic Church: History, Culture and Contributions" or PPTorig
Mr Botros will be introduced by Amin Ghali.
Mr. Botros

Links to purchase this book:,, or
Holy Manners The background on the phrase and why we have adopted it. The guidelines for our studies.
Click to visit the St. David's Adult Ed Forum  Internet Discussion Group at Yahoo - the St. David's Forum. The archive is public and readable. Participation is by invitation. Click HERE if you would like to join. You will then be able to post your own responses to the list and will be emailed the notices and contributions of the others. Click left to visit the archives of the site (read only). There are presently 88 persons.
Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge. ... Proverbs 23:12 (NIV)
Group Facilitator. Wayne Holst              EMAIL WAYNE

I spent most of my life thinking like a church professional, rather than as a regular congregational member. My training as a pastor always had me asking myself 'how can I apply this discovery, insight, new information to a regular church setting?'

Often, clergy have been hesitant to share the discoveries they have made through a 'critical' approach to the Bible with their parishoners because they wonder how laypeople might accept it. I have found that many thinking laity are professionals in their own fields of endeavour and understand a critical approach very readily. What they seek are ways of relating faith to daily living.

I am grateful for the journey I have been taking through ordained ministry to teaching at the university and serving as a fellow layperson at St.David's United Church. Here we find that questioning and honest expression of our faith and doubt is readily accepted and supported.
Group Facilitator. Jock McTavish           EMAIL JOCK

I am a student and a poet, a democrat and a techocrat, an eclectic eccentric. I grew up in a loving Baptist community, so in my heart I'm still a Bible loving evangelical. As I grew in learning I found a new home in the United Church whose tolerance embraces the broadest range of Christian understanding. I most enjoy the illumination of our ancient traditions by modern scholarship. For they show in clear novel ways that the perspectives of the Special Ones were seldom the understandings of those that followed. They show all knowledge to be in relationship .

There seems a lack of understanding in our secular world for religious practices. The reasons why I still gladly - even necessarily - attend church are difficult to voice to those unfamiliar with church, or those injured by church. Elliott got it right. We find our way back to the place we started from. But with new understanding.