Omar could not believe it. And just then another man who was tied to another pole and had been tortured for one month continually, shouted, “Omar! Don’t believe in this man, he’s absolutely lying. I did not send him as my last messenger,” because one month before this man had been caught declaring himself God!
These people are megalomaniacs. It is a certain mind disease. You want to be superior, higher than everybody else. You would like to be a president of a country, a prime minister of a country, a king, a queen, but it is difficult – there is so much competition. And in the whole country only one man can become a president, and the whole country is burning: deep down, everybody desires to be higher, above everybody else’s head, to be somebody special, unique. Now these kinds of people can find very easy ways: to declare oneself a messiah. There is no election for it, you don’t need anybody’s sanction for it. You can write a book in which you can declare that you are the messiah. This is a circular argument: the book is true because it is written by a messiah, and you are the messiah because it is written in a true book.
What other evidence has Jesus for being a messiah, except his own statements? What do Christians have to prove that Jesus is a messiah? – because it is written in the New Testament, and the New Testament is nothing but this man’s statements. Do you see the circular argument? They are true because they are from the messiah, and he is a messiah because it is written in the true book.
Jesus was not such a bad man that he should have been crucified – his only crime was that he declared himself to be a messiah. That too is nothing to be bothered about. If somebody thinks he is a messiah, he’s doing no harm to anybody; let him enjoy. But the Jews could not tolerate it. So I will have to go deep into the whole concept and its history.
Moses is responsible for Jesus’ crucifixion. Nobody has said it before because the distance between Moses and Jesus is three thousand years. But I say to you, Moses is responsible for Jesus’ crucifixion – for two reasons. First, he declares that a messiah is going to come and he will solve all your problems, all your difficulties. This is pure politics.
Jews were slaves in Egypt. Moses was a great charismatic leader, certainly one of the greatest leaders the world has known. He convinced these slaves that they could be free – not only that, but that they were the chosen people of God. These slaves were, in a way, perfectly satisfied the way they were there, although it was not a very comfortable situation. They were poor, their humanity was almost crushed. They were not treated like human beings, they were treated worse than animals. And continual labor, a futile kind of labor.