8.1 A Counterfeit’s Beginning
“And the crowds, when they saw what Paul had done,
lifted up their voices, shouting in the Lycanonian language,
The gods have come down to us in HUMAN FORM!
They called Barnabus ZEUS,
and they called Paul, because He led in the discourse, HERMES [god of speech.]
And the priest of Zeus, whose [temple] was at the entrance of the town,
brought bulls and garlands to the [city’s] gates
and wanted to join the people in offering sacrifice.” Acts 14:11-13
8.2 ZEUS IS ALL TO GREEK WORSHIPPERS
Hard as it may seem to Bible believers today, the early Greek people thought Yahshua and His Disciples were gods of the Greek pantheon. It is this inability to see the “mystery of iniquity” already at work that keeps people from turning to Yahshua. They firmly believed there is no connection to Zeus and Jesus.
In past chapters we have shown you how the Hebrew word “Yeshu” or “Yahshu” came about. And, you know what it means.
You have also seen how the Greek word for Yeshu is Iesou(s). You also know how the Greeks “heard” the sound of the name as sounding like Iezeu(s). You also know that the believer is told to READ to understand. Plus, you have been shown how the first records were destroyed. Yet, many still will believe there is no connection to Zeus and Jesus. Remember the name Jesus represents the curse from the Old Testament to blot out the Messiah’s real Name.
In this chapter, then we want to go further and show how the Greeks carried their belief in Zeus to the point of actually worshipping him, under the guise of worshipping the Messiah of the New Testament. In fact Jesus Christ is the false “image” of Yahshua the Messiah. It is for this reason that “Christianity” was so easily led into paganism under the guise of New Testament worship.
8.3 GOD OF MANY NAMES?
The Bible says there is ONE name under heaven whereby we may be saved. Those who do not wish to believe this simple statement say it doesn’t matter. They will also tell you their “god” has many names and that they are worshipping the “god” of the Bible. Are they?
First, what do the Scriptures say about His Name? If you have a concordance, look up the word name. Now go through each scripture mentioned and count the times YHWH talks about His “nameS”, plural. Let me know how many times He does that, will you?
The point is, the Creator of the Bible has only ONE NAME and many titles. Some people don’t seem to see, or know, the difference between a title and a name. That probably comes from stubbornness of the heart, and sight.
Since there are so many occurrences of the word “name” in the concordance, I am not going to quote any here, you do that for yourself if you are interested in the truth.
I have, over the years, had countless people tell me that it does not matter what name we use for the Father or His Son and that no one knows their Names anyway. And they have MANY names. Is that so?
We know this much for sure, YHWH is at least the WRITTEN form of the Name in the OLD TESTAMENT. It is at least, the equivalent English letters to the Hebrew. Therefore, there should be no problem in writing it, correct? (Let the READER understand.) This means we could at least write it in all cases instead of Lord. Wouldn’t that be a good idea? We could do like the ancient Jews — at least, have it written in properly, and then we could SAY out loud something like “the Creator.” Right? That wouldn’t be too difficult, would it?
We could do the same in the New Testament, just like the early Apostles did. We could read “Iesous” and say out loud what we KNOW the correct translation to be, Yahshua. Not too difficult, right? (Let him who READS understand.)
Do you know who the god of MANY names IS? There is only one who has many names, just as there is only one who has ONE Name. Read this and you will also read all of what Paul quoted on Mars (a god of war) Hill.
8.4 HYMN OF CLEANTHES
(Preserved for us in one manuscript of Stobaeus’s Ecloques:)
“Most glorious of the immortals, THOU OF MANY NAMES, almighty forever, O ZEUS, author of nature, directing all things with law, all hail! It is right for all mortals to address thee. For we are thy offspring, having been allotted the likeness of thy divinity — we alone, of all mortal things that live and move on earth. Therefore I will hymn thee and always sing of thy might.
“To thee this whole world, circling round the earth, renders obedience wherever thou dost lead, and is willingly ruled by thee; such a servant dost thou hold in thine invincible hands, THE TWO-EDGED, fiery, EVER-LIVING THUNDERBOLTS! Under its strokes all the works of nature are brought to fulfillment. With it thou directest universal Reason, which moves through all things, mingling with the great and the lesser lights.
“… So great a king art thou, supreme throughout all.
“Nor does any deed take place apart from thee, O LORD, on earth or throughout the divine vault of the sky or in the sea save what wicked men do by their folly. Nay, thou knowest also how to make the odd even, and the things that lack order orderly; and things that are unlovely are loved by thee. So hast thou fitted all things together into one, the good with the bad, so that they become one universal Reason, existing for ever.
“As many of mortals as are wicked flee this Reason and bid it begone — ill fated wretches, who always yearn for the possession of good things, but neither see nor hear the common law of GOD, through obedience to which they might have a good life in company with reason. But they for their part rush on unreasoning now to this end, now to that; some cherishing contentious zeal for glory, some turning inordinately towards gain, and others towards indulgence and the pleasurable deeds of the body … and they are borne on now here, now there, eagerly striving for the exact opposite of these things which they attain.
“But, O ZEUS, giver of all, shrouded in dark clouds, LORD of the THUNDERBOLT, rescue men from baneful ignorance. Scatter it, O FATHER, from their souls, and grant that they may attain sound judgement, trusting in which thou dost direct all things with justice; so that honored by thee we may requite thee with honour, hymning thy works continually, as is fitting for one who is mortal. For neither for mortals nor for gods is there any greater privilege than justly to hymn UNIVERSAL law forevermore.
“Lead me, O ZEUS, and thou, my destiny. Whate’er the path that ye ordain for me, Fearless I’ll follow, but if I refuse, still must I follow, howsoe’er I choose.”
(Cleanthes, also preserved by the Stoic writer Epictetus, C.A.D. 55-135).
If you would like a picture of “The THUNDERING Jupiter” (Zeus), check Bell’s New Pantheon.
Now you know who is the god of MANY names.
8.5 HOW DID GREEKS SEE MESSIAH?
Put yourself in the frame of mind of a Greek during the time of the Messiah. If you really were a Greek, who would you normally be worshipping? Why, Zeus, of course.
What did Zeus do? Well, he healed, he had “just” laws. He “rose from the dead and was alive”. And on and on. Can you disagree with this so far? What was one of Zeus’s titles in relation to weather? “THUNDER.” Was it not? He was also called “lord of the thunderbolt.” Keep all this in mind. Let’s pretend we are Greeks in Jerusalem and we hear about the Messiah, want to see Him, we do, and hear a voice from heaven at the moment we see Him. What would we say and think HE WAS? Do you think this is too far-fetched? Guess again. It’s IN YOUR BIBLE!!!
Get a Bible and open it to John 12. I hope you are ready for this. Verse 20.
“Now among those who went up to worship at the feast were some GREEKS. THESE [GREEKS] came to Phillip, … and THEY [THE GREEKS] made this request, SIR [check your Greek interlinear here. They just used a title for a Greek god, Kurie (Lord)] we desire to SEE IESOUS.”
Did they perhaps ask to see Iesius (the son of Zeus)? Finally the Disciples told Yahshua of this. He then told of wheat dying and then producing a rich harvest.
Think now. If you were Greeks who believed in ancient stories of Zeus, and you saw and heard this Man, who would you – a Greek – think He was? Remember, the Jews who worshipped differently, said He was John, a prophet, etc. So, why would a Greek be any different? He wouldn’t. He would see Yahshua as representing Zeus. With this in mind, let’s go on.
“[Rather, I will say] ‘Father, glorify — honor and extol — YOUR OWN NAME!” THEN there came a voice out of heaven saying, ‘I have already glorified it and I will glorify it again.’”
OK, Greek, you in the crowd hearing this loud voice in the sky (heaven), who was this? Here is their actual answer. Verse
“The crowd of BYSTANDERS [who was up close?] heard the sound and SAID that it had THUNDERED! Others [probably the Jews] said, ‘An angel has spoken to Him!’”
Do you need more to see the connection? You will find that what the Apostle John is battling in his epistles starts right here. It ends up with the Gentile Greek “converts” kicking the “Jewish” members out of the assemblies. When this happened, the assembly became the “church.” Total paganism took over. The Assembly was no longer following the teaching of the Bible, nor of Yahshua.
The church began spawning the religion and teaching of the followers of Zeus! Don’t believe this? Okay. Who in 3 John kicked the believers out? Was it not Diotrephes? Do you know what his name means? It means, “Nursed of Z E U S!!!”
3 John 9-10, “I have written briefly to the church; but DIOTREPHES, who likes to take the lead among them and put himself first, does not acknowledge my authority [John was the last living Apostle] and refuses to accept my suggestions or to listen to me … And not satisfied with that, he refuses to receive and welcome the brethren himself, and also interferes with and forbids those who would welcome them and tries to expel them from the assembly.”
Friend, read 2 John and if you will understand the chapters that preceded this, you will now KNOW what John and the early Apostles were struggling against. You will understand who the anti-messiah is. With study and effort, the pieces should begin to fall in place for you.
8.6 THE 350 B.C.E. DISCOVERY
Earlier, we mentioned a discovery that tied in with this book. That discovery is a coin that called a “youthful, bearded Zeus enthroned with sceptre, thunderbolt, and eagle … Iao Sabao(th).” Here is another quote. “The Phoenician quarter-shekel — to judge from its weight, style and fabric — was struck about 350 B.C., and therefore furnishes our earliest evidence of [Yahweh] conceived BY GENTILES AS ZEUS.” p. 235, Zeus.
The point we are making is the Jews hid the true Name of the Messiah, as explained. Then when the Greeks finally got authority in the assembly, they continued worshipping in the way of Zeus, as that is exactly who they thought Yahshua was. To them He was the fulfillment of their god Zeus.
Friends, open your mind and open your Scriptures. You will be amazed at what will now open up to your understanding!