According to the New Testament, Jesus' closest friends didn't recognize him after the resurrection. John tells us (in 20:14) that Mary Magdalene, a woman Jesus had a questionable past with, looked right at him but didn't know who he was. In Mark 16:12, two of Jesus' disciples didn't recognize him because he "appeared in another form." And according to Luke 24:16, their eyes were "holden" so they wouldn't know him.
Assuming there was ever a historic Jesus and that the Gospels were even loosely based on actual events (which I greatly doubt), I think there is a much simpler explanation. Maybe it wasn't him at all! Maybe the disciples didn't recognize him because it wasn't the same dude! Maybe they wanted so much to believe that he had risen, that they voted in a new Messiah.
"Sure, he looks different and walks with a limp, but he knows all the scriptures and what a great story this will make! He rose from the dead! Praise the Lord!"
What do you think?
John 20:14 And when she [Mary Magdalene] had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.
Mark 16:12 After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country.
Luke 24:16 But their eyes were holden that they should not know him.
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