Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Mary Magdale Wife of Chrish

Some modern writers have come forward with claims that Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus. These writers cite Gnostic writings to support their argument. Sources like the Gospel of Philip depict Mary Magdalene as being closer to Jesus than any other disciple. However, there is no known ancient document that claims she was his wife; rather, the Gospel of Philip depicts Mary as Jesus' koinonos, a Greek term indicating a "close friend", "companion" or, potentially, a lover. The closeness described in these writings depicts Mary Magdalene, representing the Gnostics, as understanding Jesus and his teaching while the other disciples, representing the Church, did not. Kripal writes that "the historical sources are simply too contradictory and simultaneously too silent" to make absolute declarations regarding Jesus' sexuality.[17]
Mary Magdalene appears with more frequency than other women in the canonical Gospels and is shown as being a close follower of Jesus. Mary's presence at the Crucifixion and Jesus' tomb, while hardly conclusive, is at least consistent with the role of grieving wife and widow, although if that were the case Jesus might have been expected to make provision for her care, as well as for his mother Mary. It also seems to contradict Jesus refusing physical contact in John 20:17 (see Noli me tangere).
Proponents of a married status of Jesus argue that bachelorhood was very rare for Jewish males of Jesus' time, being generally regarded as a transgression of the first divine commandment: "Be fruitful and multiply". According to this reasoning, it would have been unthinkable for an adult, unmarried Jew to travel about teaching as a rabbi.
A counter-argument to this is that in Jesus' time the Jewish religion was very diverse and the role of the rabbi was not yet well defined. It was really not until after the Roman destruction of the Second Temple in A.D. 70 that Rabbinic Judaism became dominant and the role of the rabbi made uniform in Jewish communities. Before Jesus, celibate teachers were known in the communities of the Essenes, and John the Baptist also was celibate. Later, Paul of Tarsus was an example of an unmarried itinerant teacher among Christians. Jesus himself approved of voluntary celibacy for religious reasons and explicitly rejected a duty to marry: "There are eunuchs, who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven. He that can take, let him take it." (Matthew 19:12).
The idea that Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus was popularized by books like The Jesus Scroll (1972), Holy Blood, Holy Grail (1982), The Gospel According to Jesus Christ (1991), The Woman with the Alabaster Jar (1993), Bloodline of the Holy Grail: The Hidden Lineage of Jesus Revealed (1996), and The Da Vinci Code (2003). It has been further popularised by the documentary The Lost Tomb of Jesus, which discusses the Talpiot tomb. Supposedly, this is the tomb of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and Judah, their "son".
The Medieval "Golden Legend" says "Some say that S. Mary Magdalene was wedded to S. John the Evangelist".
The Australian scholar Barbara Thiering claims that a full account of the marriage and children of Jesus and Mary Magdalene can be derived from the New Testament by use of the pesher technique.


Anonymous said...

Presented in a fair manner.

somashekhar said...

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