Most people never give much thought to the question, was Jesus a real person. Unless you get into a Christian versus atheist debate it doesn’t come up much, and seldom even then. Most people kind of assume he was really a guy who lived, whether they believe in all that is said about him or not. But atheists and other non-Christians have questioned or denied he ever existed at all. Claims of a completely made up character to build a controlling religion have been made by many. The variety of stories made up to cast doubt on his human life range from intriguing sounding conspiracies to ridiculous nonsense. Having heard and investigated so many, I have found them long on half truths, giant leaps, and outright lies in at least some of their connections. They never take a whole picture approach to their argument. There is always a huge hole in the possibility of their conjecture they are unwilling to address. Though the point of faith is belief without proof, we have plenty of proof of the earthly life of Christ, and all those who have attempted to disprove his existence have fallen short. The historical man we call Jesus, who was found to be Christ, did exist. He was a Jewish man of mostly Hebrew descent who lived in Roman controlled Israel.
The most reasonable and likely primary source of interfering with the true story of Jesus is from the Flavians. They were in the right place at the right time to take the story of Christ and adapt it into an institutional religion. Roman leadership became involved again 200 years later and I have no doubt there is political influence in the writing and selecting of the books in the Bible. No serious scholar, religious or not, believes the books of the Bible are all written by the people they are credited to traditionally. The choice of what to include in the Bible has shaped our culture, and our understanding of Jesus as the only source of information about him most have ever seen, but the importance of acceptance into Roman culture cannot be overstated for Christ’s message to be spread. Whatever concessions made in assembling the Bible were necessary to carry His message through the ages. But one only needs to look at the Church built by Thomas the apostle which still stands in India today, and the evidentiary history of other apostles to know, interference or not, the story of Jesus is true.
Whether his name is even Jesus or not is a topic of much debate, and completely irrelevant. Much of what Christians and non Christians focus on and debate about him is of no importance at all. It is simply conjecture, endless professing and denouncing of the established narrative of modern western Christianity. While the average person has a rough idea who he was and what he did, even among clergy and faithful Christians, most just know the basics of accepted institutional Christianity. What most everyone does know and is important, is a man of no political or social status completely changed the world.
Everyone has different views and beliefs about who and what Jesus is and was. No matter how perfectly you’ve agreed with or conformed to a particular theology or religious tradition, each individual brings their own perspective into the relationship. The overwhelming majority of Christians no matter what part of the world you are in, hold the same primary beliefs, as described in the Nicene Creed. Those who don’t aren’t considered Christians by those who do. Religions that include things outside or beyond the Bible are likewise not considered Christians by the larger religious groups. The important part to begin with, is there was a man who was Christ and we know him as Jesus.