There is not a smooth transition between the Hebrew Testament and the Greek Testament. Caught in the middle, the hapless Yehoshua bin Yusuf is a man without a country. New Dispensation! cry the Christians, who are equally caught between the new and the old. The transfer of power did not go smoothly.
Conversely, one might say that Jesus was a country without a man, since we know nothing of the man but all about the myth. Michael Moorcock wrote a novel of a time-traveler who, upon going back to prove to himself that Jesus was real found a gibbering, drooling, helpless child. The traveler took the role of messiah upon himself, fulfilling the requirements of the story, becoming what he sought. That’s far more information than we have about the “real” Jesus. Did he lisp? Limp? What language did he speak – Aramaic, Greek? Of these things we know nothing.
We call those past religions Pagan, but of course they were the religions of empire, not merely of country folk. The term demeans them, which is suitable for Christian purposes. The putative Jesus seems to take more from them than from his birth religion. Jesus was a Jew, yet Christians have eschewed the Passover, Hanukkah, all Jewish customs. Instead, we have a birth that coincides with several of the gods, a re-birth that coincides with fertility rituals of a goddess, saints who were once gods themselves. Jesus carries the name of a great Hebrew general, but spoken in the Greek form – the new language of the gospels.
Wikipedia says of paganism:
The term pagan is a Christian adaptation of the “gentile” of Judaism, and as such has an inherent Abrahamic bias, and pejorative connotations among monotheists,comparable to heathen and infidel also known as kafir (كافر) and mushrik in Islam.
And yet, in delicious irony, Christianity far more resembles paganism than it does Judaism; it is not a continuation of Judaism but its replacement, with most elements drawn from the polytheistic world. The food purification sacrifices of the Jews become the sacrifice of Jesus, himself, in the Catholic Mass, a celebration of his torture and death as a remedy for fallen man. Could a more perverted method be conceived? Can ritual cannibalism be a palliative device?
Well-meaning scribes concocted this boiler-plated theology in bits and fits well after the founder could stop them. Cathedrals were appropriated for Christian use, with little change in services, and occult devices were in common use, and still remain visible.
For more information about paganism in Christianity, check out the wikipedia page.