Biography of Messiahs and Prophets Jesus Christ Part 3

About the famous religious figure Jesus Christ, biography and history of the Christian leader.

MESSIAHS AND PROPHETS

JESUS (c. 7 B.C.-29 A.D.)

Finally, and fatefully, Jesus went to Jerusalem with the disciples for Passover. He was welcomed into the city by tremendous crowds regaling him as a spiritual hero. So great was the popular acclaim that those leaders plotting against Jesus had to postpone arresting him for a week for fear of causing a riot. When the time came, they acted on the advice of Judas, one of Jesus' 12 disciples, who had been bribed into betrayal. They took Jesus quietly while he was praying at night in the Garden of Gethsemane. At the approach of the authorities, the disciples fled. Jesus was tried and found guilty of blasphemy by the Sanhedrin. The penalty of death was agreed upon, but it was not within the power of the religious tribunal to impose such a penalty. It had to be pronounced by a representative of Rome. Jesus was taken to the Roman procurator, Pontius Pilate, who at first did not see any reason for Jesus to be executed. But, at the insistence and verbal manipulations of Jesus' accusers, Pilate agreed to the death sentence. Jesus was taken away by Roman guards, who ridiculed and beat him most of the night. He was crucified the next day, Friday, outside Jerusalem on a hill called Golgotha ("the skull place") in Hebrew, Calvary in English. At approximately three o'clock that afternoon, with Mary Magdalene, a loyal follower, John, one of his disciples, and his mother Mary standing near, Jesus died on the cross.

In order not to violate the laws of the Sabbath, which began at sundown, his body was hurriedly taken from the cross and placed in a tomb provided by Joseph of Arimathea, a sympathetic member of the Sanhedrin. No work could be done on the Sabbath, so the mourners had to wait until Sunday morning to prepare the body of Jesus for burial. But when Mary Magdalene went to the tomb, it was open and empty. What happened to the body is the final and greatest point of contention in the controversial story of Jesus. Was his body stolen by his disciples during the night? Or, one of the fundamental precepts of Christianity, did Jesus rise from the dead to ascend to heaven after appearing in the flesh before his followers (including Mary Magdalene and the disciples) to supplant their initial amazement with faith?

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