Skip to comments.Is There New Evidence That Jesus Had a Wife?
Posted on 04/14/2014 9:05:44 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
The internet has been abuzz with intriguing headlines announcing that scholars have determined that the so-called Gospel of Jesus Wife papyrus is authentic and that there is no forgery evidence in the manuscript.
What exactly does this mean? And should Christians be concerned that a new discovery might contradict the biblical account and undermine their faith?
Actually, the report from scholars working with the Harvard Divinity School found that the manuscript is much younger than previously thought in other words, it is even further removed from the time of the New Testament than scholars originally believed meaning that, at most, it is a very late myth without a stitch of historical support.
What the report did say was that there was no evidence that any part of this small manuscript had been forged, so what was written was authentic in terms of not being the work of a modern forger.
But the scholars did not determine that the apparent reference to Jesus having a wife was authentic. How could they?
As New Testament scholar Darrell Bock observed back in September, 2012 when the find was first announced, In the New Testament, the church is presented as the bride of Christ. And then in Gnostic Christianity in particular, theres a ritual - about which we don't know very much - that portrayed the church as the bride of Christ. So we could simply have a metaphorical reference to the church as the bride, or the wife, of Christ.
And what if this text recorded Jesus as saying that one of his disciples would be his wife?
Bock explained that, This would be the first text - out of hundreds of texts that we have about Jesus - that would indicate that he was married, if its even saying that. So to suggest that one text overturns multiple texts, and multiple centuries, of what has been said about Jesus and whats been articulated about him, I think is not a very wise place to go, just simply from a historical point of view.
Initially, when Harvard professor Karen King learned about this papyrus fragment written in the Coptic language, which was used by the ancient, heretical, Gnostic Christians, she thought it might have been a forgery, as did other scholars, especially from the Vatican. But upon further study, she concluded it was not, dating it to the fourth century A.D.
Yet how seriously should we take a fourth century report about Jesus, who was crucified around 30 A.D., especially when it contradicts every other piece of evidence we have about Jesus up to that time? As Prof. Bock said, this is not a very wise place to go, just simply from a historical point of view.
To give you a parallel example, how seriously would future historians take a report written 300 years after Pearl Harbor that contradicted every single report that preceded it, including all reports from all eye witnesses?
But the latest report the one creating such a stir claims that the tiny manuscript should not be dated to the fourth century. Instead, scholars have now dated it to approximately 741 A.D., meaning, more than 700 years after the time of Jesus. What kind of evidence is this?
It would be similar to historians 1,000 years from now finding a letter written in the year 2510 claiming that George Washington, who died in 1799, was actually an alien from Mars. How seriously would it be taken? (Come to think of it, the Ancient Aliens series has probably made a similar claim already!)
There remains no evidence of any kind that Jesus had a wife (note to the reader: Dan Browns fictional The Da Vinci Code is not evidence), and the only thing scholars did was determine that this small papyrus fragment was not a modern forgery, although it was hundreds of years younger than they originally thought.
Of course, it is still not totally clear that the manuscript even claims Jesus had a wife, but we know that within 150 years of the time of Jesus, there were fictional gospels circulating with all kinds of bogus claims. Should it surprise us, then, that many centuries later, another fictitious account with yet another new claim would be written down?
Unfortunately, many casual readers and skeptics now think that some authentic new evidence has been discovered supporting the idea that Jesus was married, and even Christians are asking if they should be concerned about this latest find.
Rest assured that nothing has been discovered that even remotely challenges the biblical account, and if this very late text does imply that Jesus had a wife, what we have is an authentic fabrication and nothing more.
I still believe that knowing his mission involved ultimate Crucifixion, he would not have married. Would be too cruel a thing to put your spouse through.
In either case, it no way diminishes who he was.
Since Jesus was a coo on name, I am sure some one named Jesus had a wife.
My Lord and Savior, Jesus of Nazareth did not
That should have said common not coo
Is there any new evidence the moon landing was faked?
Headline phrased as a question. That is one of the things I hate about MSN.com. Every third article is headlined by a question. If they have to ask a question, they don’t know anything, so it is useless to read. Same as this: After over 2000 years, pretty much every shred of evidence of anything has already been found.
Jesus may have married...In which case, he likely had a herd of kids...I could be one of the decendents...
I think Sam Kinison pretty much nailed why Jesus couldn’t have been married.
Of course the Christian’s deified rabbi had a wife! If he followed the Torah in letter and Spirit he certainly was. Of course, I’ll get flack about it, but here are the commandments.
(Keep in mind that Jewish men are supposed to get married per God, but rabbis doubly so because they set the example.)
Two times God says to go forth and multiply.
Genesis 1:28 and 9:7 (have children)
God officiated Adam and Eves marriage. Genesis 2:24
Then take a look at Deuteronomy, chapter 24:1-5.
Marry childless brothers widow (even if you are already married. This is known as yibum.). Deuteronomy 25:5
If a man (or woman) refuses to marry his brothers widow then he must perform the commandment called chalitzah in order to free her from the required marriage and allow her to marry someone else. Deuteronomy 25:7-10
The rapist must marry the maiden (if she chooses to do so). Deuteronomy 22:29
The slanderer must remain married to the wife he slandered and not allowed to divorce her. Deuteronomy 22:19
Not to marry a woman and her daughter, or her sons daughter, or her daughters daughter. Leviticus 18:17
Not to marry non-Jews. Deuteronomy 7:3
Not to let Moabite and Ammonite males marry into the Jewish people. Deuteronomy 23:4 (Doesnt really apply any more since Moabites and Ammonites dont exist now.)
Dont keep a third generation Egyptian convert from marrying into the Jewish people. Deuteronomy 23:8-9
Not to refrain from marrying a third generation Edomite convert. Deuteronomy 23:8-9 (Doesnt really apply since there are no more third generation Edomites around.)
Not to let a bastard marry into the Jewish people. Deuteronomy 23:3
Not to let a eunuch marry into the Jewish people. Deuteronomy 23:2
The high priest (cohen) must not marry a widow. Leviticus 21:14
The high priest (cohen) must marry a virgin maiden. Leviticus 21:13
A high priest (cohen) must not marry a divorcee. Leviticus 21:7
A cohen must not marry a zonah (a woman who had forbidden relations) or a chalalah Leviticus 21:7
So either the Christian’s defied rabbi and Paul/Saul are either a card-carrying Jews who followed Torah to the letter as well as in Spirit, or what is written in the Christians New Testament is a lie or a mis-translation.
Also, take a look at this article and see what you think.
Was the Apostle Paul Married?
You do have to engage in a temptation to know what it is. His time in the desert was enough and then the offers from Satan to rule in this world.
If you concede He had a wife, you open the door to those who say He had children. That opens up another can of worms
An observant Jew of that day would be likely to follow the instruction to go forth and multiply; to do so without sin would require a wife, wouldn’t it? Yet other than a mysterious reference to a “beloved disciple” there is no mention of a spouse.
If we ask, He will tell us, later.
The absurdity of the idea can be seen when you consider all that is known about (the human) Jesus Christ. Jesus wasn’t just famous after he died. He was a renowned celebrity of sorts (to compare to today). He was considered a divisive figure (mostly by the High Priests and Religious/Political Leaders. Jesus was an activist. He fought for the meek, humble and ostracized. His existence and biography was recorded historically in more than just the bible.
That he intervened in Mary’s (prostitute) stoning was BIG news. I would think that a secret wife of Jesus would have come out.
That said, Jesus had siblings. What happened to them? Where are the distant removed cousins of Christ?
“You do have to engage in a temptation to know what it is.”
Which is the greater temptation? To engage in it as a single man or when married?
He was a rabbi that followed the letter of the Torah as well as in the Spirit of it. He tried to get all of Israel to do the same which resulted in him being described as you have said.
or that the moon landing has caused all the subsequent weather patterns to change.
My cousin truly believe that it did. sigh
Your opinion is interesting but one would have to believe in something other or in addition to The Bible to get there.
It's a freakin' grocery list!
They are equivalent....