AJ Miller and Mary Luck
Mary Luck and AJ Miller believe they are Mary Magdalene and Jesus (divinetruth.com)

A man in Australia is gaining increasing prominence for his assertions that he is Jesus Christ and that his partner is Mary Magdalene.

Alan John Miller, or AJ Miller as he likes to be known, runs a movement in Queensland called the Divine Truth.

Formally a Jehovah's Witness, Miller, 50, "remembered" he was Jesus in 2004. He said: "My name is Jesus and I'm serious." His partner, real name Mary Luck, said she began remembering her past life from 2,000 years ago in 2008.

Miller says he can remember everything from the last two millennia - but not being able to speak Aramaic.

"Mary, myself, and some other spirits by the late 20th century had found a way to return to earth to demonstrate these truths, along with many more truths obtained over 2000 years of spiritual progression," he says.

In 2007, Miller bought a 16-hectare property near Kingaroy, two hours from Brisbane. Dozens of their followers have since bought properties nearby to be closer to Jesus.

In an interview with Sky News, Miller said he and Mary have "very clear memories" of the crucifixion: "It wasn't as harrowing for me as it was for others like Mary who was present.

"When you are one with God you are not in a state of fear, and you have quite good control over your body's sensations and the level of pain that you absorb from your body."

Miller and Lane say donations are not obligatory but are welcomed - they have no other source of income apart from donations and gifts, and the money is used to put on free services.

Up to 150 people attend Miller's services at a time and some, such as former British neuroscientist Louise Faver, have given up their careers to be closer to the couple.

However, his increasing popularity is causing concern among cult experts. Reverend David Millikan told Sky: "The danger is you'll be drawn closer and closer into his web to a point that you lose access to your social life, you spend all your money, you'll have the curses of all your family ringing in your ears and you may well lose your relationship."

Divine Truth
A Divine Truth seminar in Queensland which is regularly attended by 200 people (divinetruth.com)

A spokeswoman for Cult Awareness and Information Centre had also previously said: "The moment someone becomes God or God's voice on Earth it gives them another level of authority to enforce submission to them."

However, Miller dismisses these concerns, saying people doubted Jesus the first time around: "All we do is present seminars and answer people's questions. I still for the life of me can't quite understand where the cult thing has come from.

"There were lots of people in the first century who didn't believe I was the Messiah and were offended by what I said - and in fact I died at the hands of some of them.

"Unfortunately they didn't learn love either and my suggestion is, even if you don't believe I am Jesus, at least learn how to love."

Many modern Christians believe in the Second Coming, where Jesus comes back to Earth, although views differ on how and when the messiah will return.

People have claimed to be Jesus for hundreds of years. One such person is former MI5 officer and whistle-blower David Shayler, who says he was anointed the messiah in 2007. In 2009 he was living as a transvestite in a squat in Surrey with a group called the Rainbow Movement, which believed the world would end in 2012.

Another man claiming to be Jesus was Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez, who fired shots at the White House in 2011 because he believed the US president was the Antichrist.