My husband is an atheist and I am a Christian so we have a lot of interesting discussions. One of the things that we have discussed is was Jesus just a magician like David Copperfield?
I don’t think he possibly could have been a simple magician.
1) The priest of most religions in that day did know some magic that is how they fooled many of their followers.
They would have seen a trickster, and figured out how he did at least some of his tricks, and since many of the miracles Jesus did were an insult to the other deities, (turning water into wine was an insult to the wine goddess) these priest would not have kept quiet! Jesus was costing them followers so they had a big incentive to blow his cover! So the magicians of his day were not able to call him out.
2) Magicians need tons of props, David Copperfield travels with two semi-trucks with of supplies. Jesus was a carpenter not only could he not afford to haul a big load of props, he could not even afford a wagon to carry himself and his followers, they had to walk everywhere they went.
3) Magicians need constant practice of their art, Jesus on the other hand was always walking, with his disciples. They had to of seen at least some of his practicing. Maybe they could have been convinced to stay quiet for a little while , but ten of his followers died and one of them went to prison, when they could have simply confessed that Jesus was a trickster and saved themselves that fate, in fact they could have been financially well rewarded for blowing Christ cover, yet none of them did.
4)Lazarus died when Jesus was out of town, by the time Jesus got anywhere near Lazarus, he had been dead for four days. The entire town was convinced he was dead, and he had been wrapped up like a mummy in a cave with a stone covering the exit so big that one man could not have slipped in and out unnoticed. Lazarus was most certainly dead, his own sister warned Jesus that Lazarus that he had probably decomposed to the point that he smelled. If it was a trick Jesus would have had to fool the entire town, including Lazarus sisters that he was dead when he wasn’t even in town when it happened.
There are other examples, but they can wait till a later date.