In my viewpoints, a system of destroying the data makes it hard for scholars to back up logical thinking. For the beginning of Christianity, I use the Jewish change in burial methods. The ossuary boxes seem to have appeared around the same time as Christianity. And ended about the same time as Christianity left the Jewish area. That would have made Christianity showing up 60-65 years before Jesus.
Paul’s religion didn’t do much until after famine, war, and a plague. And took off in the early fourth century. The top Roman religious college was located at Alexandria and was teaching gnostic Christianity until shut down and covered up by Rome. Four times the Roman Empire considered making gnostic the main Roman religion before Paul’s Christianity was chosen. And it may have been more of fear that the Roman capital would have been moved to Alexandria Egypt if gnostic was chosen.
As far as the history of religion being burnt, buried, and destroyed. I suggest reading the book written by Henry Lincoln, Michael Baigent, and Richard Leigh called The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail.
As far as Jesus being progressive, his understanding of morals for civilization are the reason that he ended up in so many religions. Rules of Laws are only as good as the morals of the civilization. And the morals are degraded by scribes who interpret the Rules of Laws from there own viewpoint. The Supreme Court was what Jesus wanted. And what Jefferson was finally able to provide. That to me is progressive and effects our daily lives.
There are 8K – 12K gods who have been worshiped according to internet search. So, what is worshiping? At its root. Etymologized as “worthiness or worth-ship”—to give, at its simplest, worth to something. Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops. Giving has always been a form of worship in the Bible.
Religions have for the most of times been about civilizations. You can see that in Germany. The church has always taxed (kirchensteuer) the people. Reason is the Church ran parts of the civilization like schools, housing, and hospitals. Today members of a recognized confession pay an additional 8 or 9 percent of their annual income tax to that church. And by “member” the authorities mean anyone who has been christened or baptized. The money is automatically deducted just like payroll taxes or social insurance. The church tax (Kirchensteuer), also called worship tax (Kultussteuer).
You see where I am trying to go here with the connection of religion and civilizations using the tax systems. In America we separated the church from civilization, but we kept religion in the civilization. Example, in God we Trust is printed on our money and “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. Our burial methods I would consider part of our civilization. What would an atheist religion look like? Would a church be needed? Or would it sort of operate in the background like our government? Would worship be a taxing process to pay for the atheist structed government. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion. Is our government which uses a Supreme Court a form of Jesus’ Christian religion? If so, then Christianity cam be progressive.