How much do you really know about the historical Jesus?

This short quiz is based on supposed facts about Jesus’s life and person rather than his teachings and other activities.
(Answers at bottom of the page.)


1/ In what year (approximately) was Jesus born?
2/ What town or village was he born in?
3/ What religion were his parents?
4/ What name was he given at birth?
5/ Who baptized him?
6/ Which tribe did he belong to?
7/ Which province of the Roman Empire did he grow up in?
8/ What surgical procedure did he undergo as a small boy?
9/ What prayer did he recite twice a day?
10/ Could Jesus read and write?
11/ Apart from Aramaic, what other language did Jesus probably have a smattering of?
12/ What did Jesus do for a living?
13/ A couple of miles from his birthplace was a very large city where he may have worked. It is not mentioned in the bible. What was its name?
14/ What does ‘Christ’ mean?
15/ How many years did Jesus preach for?
16/ How many times did Jesus meet Paul?
17/ Which new gospel of the  sayings of Jesus was unearthed in Nag Hammadi in Egypt in the middle of the 20th century?
18/ Which 2 of Jesus’ siblings wrote books of the bible?
19/ Who was the first woman apostle?
20/ What king was Jesus said to be descended from?



1/ 6-4 B.C.E.
2/ Nazareth (not Bethlehem!)
3/ Jewish
4/ In his native tongue of Aramaic his name was Yeshua, or Yeshu for short
5/ John the Baptist, or Baptizer
6/ Judah, one of the twelve tribes of Israel
7/ Galilee
8/ Circumcision
9/ The She’ma  (Deuteronomy 6:4-9)
10/ No, he was almost certainly illiterate
11/ Greek
12/ The Greek word ‘tekton’ probably means not so much a carpenter as a day labourer in the building trade
13/ Sepphoris
14/ The title means ‘anointed’. In Hebrew that’s ‘Messiah’.
15/ Three
16/ They never met, though Paul claimed that having a vision of Jesus was as good as meeting him in the flesh
17/ The gospel of Thomas
18/ James and Jude
19/ Junia. There’s more than one list. Paul mentions her in Romans 16:7
20/ King David



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