Make sure and read part I of this article first!
I recommend reading the actual story of Horus and other gods in the link below and deciding for yourself if Christianity and they are connected.
My own opinion, as I have studied these “best examples” of the connections is that this is complete rubbish. I have honestly been very disappointed.
I have great respect for many atheists who are also scientists and researchers, but this topic has actually called my confidence in them into question. It is nearly universal for those debating Christianity to bring these links up even though any link that exists is either obviously cultural (one of a god’s many names is similar to other names of that era or location) or not a connection at all, or common to many religious figures – like some version of defeating the realms of the dead – but even those are very different from one another.
An example of this last idea is “Resurrections.” Resurrections take various forms in religious stories. The most typical by far is the cyclical dying-and-raising that many of the gods did… they represented the way that the sun died (or at least spent the night in the underworld) every day (like in Egyptians mythology) and was reborn every morning… or the way that some of the fertility gods die each fall only to be reborn (like the plants) in the spring. This is the “Corn King model” which is very common in ancient pagan religions.
However, these strolls through the realms of the dead to return in the morning or in the spring or in order to find a dear lost friend and get wisdom from them, etc… are still not very similar to the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who died to atone for the sins of the fallen race of mankind in order to create a right relationship between Almighty God and His fallen creation.
My point here is that even if they were, it would prove no necessary link of any meaning. It is a common human issue to face death. If there were a God, that God would need to create a solution to that issue regardless… so, of course, many faiths include that kind of thing. This would have no bearing on whether they were accurate or not.
So, what I decided to do for myself, to start, was to re-tell the stories of these characters as they appear in as unbiased (as to this particular issue) accounts as I could find… like the Egyptian tourism sites.
(Even other atheists ridicule this continued legend of these connections… and when this one does, based on actual research, others still in denial within the atheist movement lash out at him. See http://stupidevilbastard.com/2005/01/ending_the_myth_of_horus/)
Maybe Mark, as a Greek, did follow some of the literary patterns of the Greeks; I am not expert enough to make a claim on that. However, I would not see that as even vaguely problematic, any more than it bothers me that Solomon would have written Hebrew style poetry rather than English Western poetry.
However, the claim has been made that the account of Mark is merely “an obvious” retelling of the account of the Odyssey. Again, I thought this claim would be fairly easy to establish, if accurate…