Tuesday 22nd September 2020 Devotion
Scripture:- Matthew 19:3-12
Topic:- Did Jesus Have A Wife 
Text:- Revelation 21:9
E. A More Recent Find:
- The so-called “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife,” was a business-card-sized scrap of papyrus with Coptic writing presented in 2012 by historian Dr. Karen L. King. King put forth that the fragment was most likely from the fourth century A.D. On this fragment is the phrase, “Jesus said to them, ‘my wife.”
- The authenticity of this fragment has been called into question, and it is not unlikely to be fraudulent, as laid out in this detailed piece of investigative journalism from The Atlantic. However, even if the fragment is authentic, it faces the following issues:
a. It was not written until the fourth century, at least three hundred years after Jesus was walking the earth.
b. It is a fragment. The only passages read: Front: “not [to] me. My mother gave to me li . . .” The disciples said to Jesus, “. . . deny. Mary is worthy of it… [or “Mary is n[ot] worthy of it.”] . . .” Jesus said to them, “my wife . . . she will be able to be my disciple.
c. There is no context for why Jesus is saying “my wife.” He could just as easily be telling a parable, quoting someone else, or even referring to the Church in the common metaphor as the bride of Christ.
d. The fragment is in Coptic, indicating that if legitimate, it would likely be associated with the other Coptic Gnostic texts.
e. Despite These Largely Obscure Sources. It’s difficult to pinpoint where the idea of Jesus’ wife comes from theologically or scholastically; much of public interest has probably been roused from the 2003 mystery thriller novel, The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown, in which a secret society has guarded the secret of Jesus’ marriage and His descendants for years.
f. The novel is rife with historical inaccuracies and has been criticized by experts in art, history, and architecture as well as in Christianity.
g. Even though The Da Vinci Code is a fictional tale and not a historical treatise, it has sparked great public imagination.
F. Who Was Mary Magdalene:
- Many “Jesus’ wife” theories revolve around Jesus’ relationship with Mary Magdalene. Let’s take a closer look at what we know about her.
- Mary Magdalene isn’t mentioned very often in the Gospels and seems to disappear from the narrative entirely in Acts. See Luke 8:1-3.
- After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.
- As Jesus was a wandering rabbi with no steady income, it appears that certain patrons helped finance His ministry, including the women listed above, of which Mary Magdalene was one.
- The moniker “Magdalene” suggests that she was from the town of Magdala on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, explains Marcela Zapata-Meza for the Bible Archaeology Society.
- As for other tales that have grown up around Mary, such as the suggestion that she was a prostitute, there is no biblical indication that this was the case.
- These stories come from centuries later, according to expert Dr. Birger A. Pearson, when speakers such as Pope Gregory the Great in the 6th century, who identified the unnamed woman who anointed Jesus’ feet as Mary Magdalene in a homily, began to postulate whether other women in the Bible were in fact Mary.
- Mary Magdalene is most prominently featured in the accounts of Jesus’ death and resurrection. Matthew 27:55-56 records that at Jesus’ crucifixion, “Many women were there, watching from a distance. They had followed Jesus from Galilee to care for his needs.
- Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.” She was also there for Jesus’ burial. See Matthew 27:61.
- Mary Magdalene was one of the first to see the empty tomb, along with one or more other women (Matthew 28:1-8; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-10).
Prayer Point:- Oh Lord God, help me to understand You better and be intimate with You henceforth by fire, in the name of Jesus Christ.
Have A Wonderful Tuesday!