top of page

The Jesus Myth: No One Asked Me!

“And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them,

‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’

“I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents

than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance." Luke 15:6-7


A billboard on Times Square by American Atheists, a couple of years ago, recommended that we "dump the Jesus myth." I've seen others expressing similar sentiments. I wish I could speak to everyone who feels compelled to make such a declaration. Had I the opportunity to meet over coffee, I'd offer my rebuttal. But I wasn't asked! If atheists took the time to really listen to me, or to other Christians of today or the past, they'd hear true accounts to at least spark curiosity, if not inspire faith.

Since I do not have the means to rent a billboard on Times Square, I'm resorting to what I do have—this blog—for whoever might stumble upon it when seeking truth.

Abstract ink drawing with the name of Jesus.
Jesus, Ink, Sara Joseph

A myth is an invented story, idea or concept, an imaginary or fictitious thing, an unproven false or collective belief—according to the dictionary.

It stands to reason then that a myth is without power since everyone knows that it's not true. So why worry if someone might actually believe it and work so strenuously to discredit it?

Why fight for attention with a giant billboard on Times Square about something which should really pose no threat to anyone? There are no billboards screaming that we dump Santa's reindeer, Zeus, Superman or Batman. Why only Jesus?

Rather than argue about the "Jesus myth," I'd like to be a witness to a dynamic reality— the reality of the living Jesus. He is no more a myth to me, than my husband and sons are. I know Him. To suggest I "dump the Jesus myth" would only make me laugh. Here are a few reasons why:

  • He changed my life, when I was powerless to do so.

  • He validates His power by honoring His promises to me.

  • He is knowable; I know Him in degrees, just as surely as I know others who are dear to me. Like all precious human relationships, I'll get to know Him more over time!

The persuasiveness of any argument can change a long held opinion because of the power of words. But when I'm encouraged to simply "dump the Jesus myth," you come against something that's not easy to tamper with—the enduring power of personal experience.

No argument can stand in the face of what I and countless Christians for millennia have experienced. You may have words, but I have experience that you cannot negate.

Christians will never go away. Our "Jesus myth" is our greatest treasure—cherished, guarded and passed on to the next generation. The world's largest billboard, emblazoned with lights, will never convince us otherwise. Besides, nothing you suggest is innovative or new. Generations have come and gone, attempting to do this very thing—to write Him off as insignificant, or as you so crudely recommend—to "dump" Him.

Generations of fiercely powerful kings, by edicts and brutality, have failed to do what you hope to accomplish with a billboard! The "Jesus Myth" has survived for centuries. Just a cursory glance at history will demonstrate that you're battling a force that's invincible, because it's divine.

Madalyn Murray O'Hair, the founder of American Atheists, said "An atheist believes that he can get no help through prayer but that he must find in himself the inner conviction and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it, and enjoy it."

It's because we HAVE found help, strength and power from Jesus when we were utterly helpless, that we believe as we do! "Dumping" Jesus then becomes utter folly! Attempting to strip us of our confidence in Him becomes an exercise in futility.

Christianity is not a trap that society must escape from, but an exquisite choice hingeing on an invitation to accept, or decline, faith in God. It is a unique privilege leading to the enjoyment of life in a manner that's otherwise incomprehensible and impossible!

It is living fully, enjoying love, laughter, joy, growth, peace, hope and far more than I can articulate here—all infused with His presence.

We love to share the reality of Jesus in our precious experiences with whoever will listen and eventually carry those stories to our graves. But until then, they are foundation upon which we build our hopes and dreams—a foundation has served us well—for generations!

Our experience of Jesus is not static, (the stuff of doctrine, ritual, history books or other people's accounts) but rather an organic reality of His very presence in our lives, growing more beloved and familiar with each passing day.

That knowledge compels us to talk about Him, write about Him, give in His name, help others with His strength—or as I do, create art as an expression of our love for Him…

We may not appear to be too influential, but our quiet witness will outlast every billboard ever raised in Times Square or elsewhere. It has for centuries!

Below is one such witness, using her talents to not "dump the Jesus myth", but rather exalt Him as He so deserves, in her unique style!

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page