Paul’s Christ is not even human, though he has taken on the likeness of one (Philippians 2:7). He is a cosmic being who existed before time. He is the first of God’s creations, through whom the rest of creation was formed (1 Corinthians 8:6). He is God’s begotten son, God’s physical progeny (Romans 8:3). He is the new Adam, born not of dust but of heaven. Yet while the first Adam became a living being, “the Last Adam,” as Paul calls Christ, has become “a life-giving spirit” (1 Corinthians 15:45–47). Christ is, in short, a comprehensively new being. But he is not unique. He is merely the first of his kind: “the first-born among many brothers” (Romans 8:29). All those who believe in Christ, as Paul does—those who accept Paul’s teachings about him—can become one with him in a mystical union (1 Corinthians 6:17). Through their belief, their bodies will be transformed into the glorious body of Christ (Philippians 3:20–21). They will join him in spirit and share in his likeness, which, as Paul reminds his followers, is the likeness of God (Romans 8:29). Hence, as “heirs of God and fellow heirs of Christ,” believers can also become divine beings (Romans 8:17). They can become like Christ in his death (Philippians 3:10)—that is, divine and eternal—tasked with the responsibility of judging alongside him the whole of humanity, as well as the angels in heaven (1 Corinthians 6:2–3). Paul’s portrayal of Jesus as Christ may sound familiar to contemporary Christians—it has since become the standard doctrine of the church—but it would have been downright bizarre to Jesus’s Jewish followers. The transformation of the Nazarean into a divine, preexistent, literal son of God whose death and resurrection launch a new genus of eternal beings responsible for judging the world has no basis in any writings about Jesus that are even remotely contemporary with Paul’s (a firm indication that Paul’s Christ was likely his own creation). Nothing like what Paul envisions exists in the Q source material, which was compiled around the same time that Paul was writing his letters. Paul’s Christ is certainly not the Son of Man who appears in Mark’s gospel, written just a few years after Paul’s death. Nowhere in the gospels of Matthew and Luke—composed between 90 and 100 C.E.—is Jesus ever considered the literal son of God. Both gospels employ the term “Son of God” exactly as it is used throughout the Hebrew Scriptures: as a royal title, not a description. It is only in the last of the canonized gospels, the gospel of John, written sometime between 100 and 120 C.E., that Paul’s vision of Jesus as Christ—the eternal logos, the only begotten son of God—can be found. Of course, by then, nearly half a century after the destruction of Jerusalem, Christianity was already a thoroughly Romanized religion, and Paul’s Christ had long obliterated any last trace of the Jewish messiah in Jesus. During the decade of the fifties, however, when Paul is writing his letters, his conception of Jesus as Christ would have been shocking and plainly heretical, which is why, around 57 C.E., James and the apostles demand that Paul come to Jerusalem to answer for his deviant teachings.