Interview with Ralph William Ausman, author of Saving Jesus

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Inside the Book:

Saving Jesus

Title: Saving Jesus 
Author: Ralph William Ausman 
Publisher: iUniverse 
Genre: Alternative History 
Format: Ebook/Paperback

The canvas of history provides a complex pattern of culture, change, and conflict. Colorful individuals were often the driving forces behind the progression of history. Was there a grander purpose behind these developments, beyond the individual people, locations, and events? History often turns on a simple thought or decision by those in a position to have a significant impact on the ultimate course for humankind. What influence did some of the most significant personages in human history unknowingly contribute on the world stage, even beyond their own individual stories and experiences? Was his story truly the driving force of history, the basic thread that ties the global human experience together? Author Ralph William Ausman's novel, Saving Jesus: Resurrecting John the Baptist takes us on a journey through history, from the Holy Land, to China, India, Greece, and ancient Persia. It follows the origins of religious thought as world empires play out across the globe in preparation for the defining moment in world history: the birth of Jesus and the subsequent emergence of Christianity that would define world growth and development for the next two thousand years. Ausman looks at such questions as what would have happened had the wise men followed Jesus and his family or if John the Baptist had become Jesus's first disciple. Saving Jesus: Resurrecting John the Baptist is not intended as a refutation of the Bible. Instead, it invites you to take an interesting-and different-look at the most important events and people of history.

The Interview:

Can you tell us what your latest book is about?

Essentially it is a book about new ideas and how God prepared the world for the coming of Jesus and Christianity. It starts with a broad look at some of the most influential religious/thought reformers in history, who appeared roughly at the same time: Confucius, Buddha, Zoroaster, Socrates, then picks up where their  ideas and beliefs were established through empire builders in China (Emperor Wu - Confucius) , India (Ashoka the Great - Buddha), and Greece (Alexander the Great - Socrates). The second half of the book looks at the lives of John the Baptist and Jesus, the relationship between them, and what might have happened had John become Jesus’ first   disciple. My sincere hope is that people would take a second look at history and see how ideas and events would come together, focusing on a small area of the Middle East and how the traditions and cultures of the world would help the growth and expansion of Christianity.

How did you come up with the idea?

          So many historical events seemed to focus on the time of Jesus / John the Baptist (and the return of Elijah) that provided the environment for new ideas (Christianity) to grow and Travel throughout the world. It seemed like the Jewish world was focused on Elijah’s return (John the Baptist) while the events surrounding John’s birth seemed to focus John on Jesus himself.

What kind of research did you do before and during the writing of this book?

I studied the lives of Confucius, Emperor Wu, Buddha, Ashoka the Great, Zoroaster, Cyrus, Socrates, Alexander the Great. These were striking individuals and the similarities were quite amazing the closer I looked into their stories.

Can you give us a short excerpt?

 “ The man turned to the boys and said, ”Do not forget this day when you here to see the
Lord’s entry into Jerusalem as it was prophesied so long ago. Many have waited and prayed for this moment to come and you are the ones fortunate enough to see and experience this. Do not forget this moment: what you have seen and what you have heard.” The boys looked at each other and giggled at the peculiar pronouncement from this crazy unknown person. They were watching a rabbi -- apparently a very popular rabbi – enter Jerusalem in an unusual manner. However, this could not possibly be a “King” Was he even a prophet? He looked ordinary. The Baptist was leading Jesus and his colt like a common servant. The whole event seemed so strange and surreal – like it was not really happening – yet they could not figure out what made the occasion so special.”

Meet the Author:
Ralph William Ausman earned a degree in computer science from California State University, Northridge. He then lived and worked in Europe and Singapore with his wife and daughter before returning to the United States. Ausman has always had an interest in different religions and their effects on culture and history.