Somewhere a can of Planters is missing one of its nuts. I know because he wrote me with this:
As an alternative / complimentary explanation to the Piso theory, the new book 'King Jesus' explains that Saul-Paul was Josephus Flavius the historian, and therefore Jesus was Jesus of Gamala, the leader of 600 'rebel fishermen'.
This does, of course, place the NT events in the late AD 60s, much like the Piso theory. And surprisingly, the NT and Talmud fully support that chronology. This book maintains that Jesus wanted to become Emperor of Rome, but was defeated by Vespasian and exiled to roman England - to the fortress Vespasian built at Chester.
Actually, that can seems to be missing several nuts, because a check of reviews of this book on Amazon shows that there must be more on the loose:
The latest book by author Ralph Ellis, "King Jesus", is nothing less than a tour de force. Ralph marshals a compelling case that the New Testament Saul and the Jewish historian Josephus are one and the same person. The claim may sound preposterous, but the reasoning behind the claim is what is important (one reviewer seems not to have understood this simple fact). In fact the author could have rested his case on the Saul-Josephus connection after the second chapter, but he continues to build the case throughout the book.
Other claims are made as well (which I won't go into as others have already mentioned them), but the author painstakingly and methodically builds his case for each claim--he works for his conclusions, he doesn't just assert them. The claim that Jesus cum King Arthur was exiled to the Deva Victrix fortress (which relies mainly on the author's analysis of the anomalous Zodiac arcurate found at that site) is mainly speculation--as the author admits. However, this is a setup for Ralph's next book and a La Brea tar pit for unsuspecting critics (he knows more than he lets on). Ralph likes to play his cards close to the vest as he did when introducing the Saul-Josephus connection in "Jesus, Last of the Pharaohs".
While connecting the dots and decoding the New Testament, the author displays brilliant scholarship and a very engaging writing style. He is a bona fide writer--and a very talented one at that.
Basically, Ellis states how his thinking was in his Acknowledgments page. "[This book] was intended as a joint effort on the subject of Saul-Josephus, but no agent or publisher was forthcoming and the project stalled. However, the concept still looked worthwhile, so I built it into an investigation into the entire New Testament."
With apologies to Ellis for 'reading him', this is probably what happened: Ellis did his usual excellent work, this time extending his earlier material on Saul-Josephus. The results clearly exposed some major inconsistencies in Biblical history. Various 'agents or publishers' took a look at his material, said "Oh, my God!", and either backed away slowly or ran screaming into the woods. They knew what a can of worms he was presenting them with. (Assuming no Orthodoxy freezeout.)
Ellis was then presented with either canning the project or making it acceptable in some way. I presume that he chose to 'water it down' or 'disguise it' by wrapping it in the Jesus and Grail materials (which DO provide much to think on). But, the really explosive and provable content remains the Saul-Josephus 'core'.
For anyone who allows themselves to think deeply about this, the Saul-Josephus identity should be both highly enlightening and troubling. This one man, who may have been a Roman agent since early in his career, has been responsible for much of the shaping and 'information flow' of his version of Christianity (or what Ellis calls 'Simple Judaism'). With the near-extermination of the original Jesus/James side (at the hands of the Roman legions), Saul-Josephus had a near free hand.
By the way, the publisher of this travesty is Adventures Unlimited Press. That’s right, the same bunch that put out Acharya S’ Christ Conspiracy.
If you think we don’t need more help with apologetics out there, you’re just not paying attention.