You may have seen on the news lately that there’s a new book that has been published called The Lost Gospel, which is supposedly based on the discovery of an ancient manuscript. It adds fuel to the fire which resulted from the discovery in 2012 of The Gospel of Jesus’ Wife. In both cases, the premise is that Jesus had a wife. If true, that would certainly be a big problem for Christianity. While these two works certainly don’t come close to proving that Jesus was married, I believe that the Bible, itself, said that he did. Here’s why.
The prevailing Jewish culture and custom (at that time), dictated that all men had to marry. Jesus would have been no exception. Marriages were actually arranged by the parents. Besides, the New Testament doesn’t say that Jesus never had a wife. Since it would have been extremely unusual if he wasn’t married, the Bible certainly would have mentioned it if that were the case. Perhaps more to the point, the Church controlled which scriptures would be included in the Bible and which ones wouldn’t. That’s why works like the Gospel of Philip were left out of the Bible since it implied an intimate relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. As the Gospel of Philip says, “The companion of the Saviour is Mary Magdalene. Christ loved her more than all the disciples, and used to kiss her often on her mouth”.
Mary Magdalene is one of most maligned and misunderstood figures in history so you may be surprised to know that:
- St. Augustine, one of the greatest figures of the Christian church, called her the “Apostle to the apostles”.
- Mary Magdalene is one of the most painted and sculpted of all classical figures.
- The Gospel of Philip declared that she was the consort of Jesus: “There were three who always walked with the Lord: Mary his mother and her sister and Magdalene, the one who was called his companion.”
- According to Luke (Gospel of Luke 24:9-10) and John (Gospel of John 20:2,18), the apostles were first informed of the resurrection of Jesus by none other than Mary Magdalene herself.
- According to Mark (Gospel of Mark 16:9) and John (Gospel of John 20:11-17), Mary Magdalene is the first witness to see Jesus after the resurrection.
- Mary Magdalene was also there at the foot of the cross, was there at the burial of Jesus and the first to visit the tomb after his death (according to the Gospel of John).
- Mary Magdalene is considered to be the author of the Gospel of Mary.
Whoever Mary Magdalene was, she obviously was a person of great importance in the story of Jesus and the Christian movement (e.g. in the Gospel of Philip she is referred to as the symbol of divine wisdom). It’s just as obvious that the Church has gone to great lengths to discredit her. What could they be hiding?
The bride and the groom
So if Jesus was married, why isn’t his marriage recorded in the Bible? Well, the Church has done its best to edit out of the Bible anything that does not conform with its dogma. However, it may have missed a thing or two (e.g. the wedding in Cana in the Gospel of John). At that wedding, Mary, the mother of Jesus, came to him asking for more wine. This would only have happened if she were the hostess. By custom then, she would have asked the person responsible for the wine, in this case the groom/Jesus, to fulfill the request – which she did (see John 2:3).
The Holy Grail
“And that child of Jesus and Mary Magdalene is known today as The Holy Grail.” – Gospel of Philip
So if Jesus was married he would have to have had children because it was Jewish custom that marriages produce children. Further, being a descendant of King David, it was mandatory that Jesus continue the royal Davidic bloodline by having at least two sons. So then, why aren’t they mentioned in the Bible you might ask? Keep in mind that the Christian movement of the disciples was considered heretical by the establishment (by both Jews and Romans). So, the gospels were sometimes written so as to disguise the names of places and people that were being written about.
The New Testament mentions that “the Word of God has increased” (Acts 6:4) and that “the Word of God grew and multiplied” (Acts 12:24). Since Jesus was referred to as the Word of God (for example, see the Gospel of John), I think the only reasonable conclusion is that these are references to the birth of a child of Jesus (actually two different children). I believe that one of his children was a son named Jesus Justus (see Colossians 4:10-11) with Justus being a title given to the Davidic crown prince. I also believe that there was a second son because custom would require that the heir to the Davidic line have at least two sons (for succession purposes).
So if Jesus survived the crucifixion, married and had a family with Mary Magdalene, how does one explain the Resurrection?
To begin with, the New Testament does not include an actual account of the resurrection (i.e. the exact moment thereof). In addition, an empty tomb proves nothing other than the body was missing. Actually, there is nothing mysterious about the body being missing. When Mary Magdalene arrived at the tomb, the tomb was open and soon thereafter she found Jesus standing outside of the tomb. So of course the body was not inside the cave as he was already outside of it.
Brian McLaren, a Christian theologian, said that, “One of the problems is that the average Christian in the average church who listens to the average Christian broadcasting has such an oversimplified understanding of both the Bible and of church history – it would be deeply disturbing for them to really learn church history.” A couple of examples of what he was talking about are as follows:
- Early Christian theologian Origen of Alexandria (in On First Principles) said that the resurrection related to the spirit, not the mortal body. He considered the concept of a resurrection to be for those that did not have eyes to see and ears to hear.
- The Gospel of Mark in Christian bibles is a forgery! That is, everything after verse 16:8 of that gospel does not exist in the oldest versions of the Bible. This means that everything after verse 16:8 was added at a later date. So the original Gospel of Mark ended simply with an empty tomb and there was no resurrection story and there were no appearances; that would only come as the legend grew. By the time that the Gospel of Luke was written, there were competing versions of the story of Jesus (see Luke 1:1-4).
As for Paul, he did not believe in the resurrection of the physical body, but rather the spiritual body alone (i.e. he never mentions Jesus having been resurrected in the flesh). Given Paul’s concept of a Christ risen into a new, spiritual body, the resurrection becomes simply an article of faith – a path to inner spiritual knowledge. Some biblical passages from Paul on this matter are as follows:
- Paul tells us that he first came in contact with Jesus on the road to Damascus, not in the flesh you understand, but only a light and a voice. (Acts 9). Paul never met Jesus in the flesh.
- Paul describes how the body that dies is not the body that rises. The body that rises, according to Paul, is “a spiritual body” (1 Corinthians 15:44).
- Finally, Paul states that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 15:50).
So there you have it from Origen, Mark and Paul. None of them believed that the Resurrection was a central tenet of Christianity. As for the epistles of James and Jude, the brothers of Jesus (see Mark 6:3), they did not mention a resurrection at all.
However, a retelling of the resurrection story would not be complete without mentioning one of the greatest inconsistencies of the Bible. In the Gospel of Mark 16:6, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb (which is empty) and an unidentified young man dressed in white says: “…You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.” Of course, the young man said that he was risen because Jesus was presumably dead and the body was missing. Since the tomb was open, though, the body of Jesus, be he dead or alive, could have been anywhere.
The Gospel of Luke is interesting because it refutes itself. We learn in Luke 24:4-6 that Mary Magdalene, among other women, sees two men in shining garments and the men tell them that Jesus has risen. However, in a retelling of the story in Luke 24:23, the two men are angels who tell the women that Jesus is alive. Obviously, then he is not yet risen.
However in the Gospel of John 20:12-13, there is no young man dressed in white but rather two angels dressed similarly in white (as in Luke’s story). There is a discussion between Mary and the angels but they don’t say that Jesus is risen. In fact as we find out later in the Gospel of John, Jesus, himself, says that he has not yet risen (John 20:17). Obviously, then he is alive! That’s consistent with Luke 24:23.
It’s obvious that both Mark and Luke are wrong about Jesus being risen at the tomb. Among other things, Jesus was not supposed to rise until the third day (according to scripture – see Luke 24:46). However, John has it’s own problem in that regards. For example, in John 21:14 it says that Jesus is risen from the dead but in John 20:26 it is obvious that this all occurred more than eight days after the crucifixion. Again, this hardly conforms to Jesus rising on the third day.
While the stories are inconsistent, the best evidence is that Jesus did not rise either directly or indirectly as a result of an empty tomb. This is because Jesus presumably said that he was not risen (John 20:17) which is consistent with the angels saying that Jesus was alive (Luke 24:23). Anyway, it was too early for him to have risen from the tomb (it was not yet the third day). Besides, according to the Gospel of John, Jesus was still alive outside the tomb at the time that his body went missing, at which time he conversed with Mary Magdalene (John 20:14-17).
The Book of Revelation and the divine right to rule
Down through history, kings were selected by the passing of the dynastic torch from father to son (i.e. from king to crown prince). “For example, the Bible speaks of a time when the sons of the gods married the daughters of men. From those unions, then, kings were born. From that time forward, royal bloodlines were firmly established. Therefore, kingly authority was based on blood or, more to the point, on DNA. Kingship was deemed to be a matter of genetic right” (A Dirty Little Secret – The Ethical Warrior). It’s therefore a question of who has a divine right to rule.
In Western Civilization, this divine right to rule has been the main factor in the rise and fall of ruling families and kingdoms. Political intrigue has often centered around assassination of royal figures, especially those who might be in line to succeed to the throne. Sometimes, the same thing was accomplished through one royal family marrying into another and eventually succeeding to the throne. A case-in-point is the British monarchy which is ruled by Germans, with the royal family actually composed of people from the German royal line of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.
What’s so important about the divine right to rule, you might ask? Because, all of these royal families trace their lineage back to the Bible! They actually trace their bloodline back to King David and beyond –arguably all the way back to the Fallen Angels. The implications are staggering.
This has a direct tie-in to the Book of Revelation. The Book of Revelation is a highly encoded book which has been totally misunderstood by Christianity. It’s not about the Apocalypse and the End of Days – not at all. It’s actually about the bloodline which extends down from Jesus and Mary Magdalene. The legacy of Jesus was his children (and their descendants). In the generations that followed, the legends grew in the search for the Holy Grail, the bloodline of Jesus.
In terms of religion, they were the rightful inheritors of the Kingdom of God, not the Church. Politically, they had the divine right to rule, to be king; and some actually were. Some of the biggest events in history (e.g. the Crusades and the Inquisition) were related to this drama which played out behind the scenes. It’s one of the biggest secrets in the history of mankind – a secret that many people don’t want you to know about…but, of course, now you know.
“ Those who say that the Lord died first and then rose up are in error, for he rose up first and then died.”
– Gospel of Philip
The question for the ages is: Why is the Bible the Word of God? The answer is because the people who believe in the Bible say it is. Okay, so where exactly is the proof then? Well as Stuart Chase so aptly put it, “ For those who believe, no proof is necessary….”
No proof is necessary, you say? Why not? The answer is that when you’ve been indoctrinated with a belief system, your mind doesn’t require it; and doesn’t want it either! Proof is irrelevant when it comes to belief. So that if a person comes face to face with an indication that their belief system may be wrong, they simply ignore it or rationalize it away. One does not dare question their belief systems because to do so would be to undermine their own state of mind. Psychologically, you believe in a religious belief system not because it is correct but rather because you have a need to believe (in something, indeed in just about anything). Ludwig Feuerbach best explained it thusly, “Religion is the dream of the human mind.”
However, I have good reason to believe that there is a lot more to the Bible than what meets the eye. Sure, it has lots of inaccuracies and inconsistencies, as well as translation errors, and yes the interpretation of the actual words leave much to be desired. There’s that word – interpretation. It pops up every time one talks about religion. In Judaism for example, their faith is based on the Talmud, which is an interpretation of the Torah. The Torah, the first five books of the Old Testament, is accepted at face value by most Christians but in Judaism it needs “interpretation”. Maybe, the question should be that if Judaism says the Torah needs to be reinterpreted, why don’t the Christians agree with them. After all, Jewish people wrote it!
Aside: No doubt that’s what George Bernard Shaw was referring to when he said that, “No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says – he is always convinced that it says what he means.”
The Israelites didn’t believe that Jesus qualified as the messiah based on their own definition of a messiah; that in turn was based on their own tradition of prophecy. However, Christianity reinterpreted the Old Testament prophecies in order to have Jesus as their messiah. I say reinterpreted because Judaism would never have accepted a divine messiah since it has no basis in the Old Testament or in their culture, historically speaking.
Interpretation is the key. Holy books seemingly always have to be interpreted, and later reinterpreted to agree with the ideology du jour. Just go and talk to a Christian fundamentalist to see what I mean. That said, I’m going to try a little interpretation of my own.
The origins of the Israelites
The Old Testament wasn’t written down until the first century BC. That’s roughly 3,000 years after Adam and Eve, according to the chronology given in the Bible. Prior to that, the Old Testament stories were passed on orally from one generation to the next. So the oral traditions of the Israelites would have been handed down from their ancestors. According to the Bible, the patriarch of the Israelites/Hebrews was Abraham. Therefore, their culture, their history and their belief systems were handed down from or through him. Abraham, himself, was a Sumerian meaning that his family was from the area now generally known as Iraq (southern Iraq to be precise). We know that because the Bible said that he came originally from Ur (which was a city/state in what was then called Sumer). Therefore, the oral tradition of the Israelites had to have come from Sumerian history/mythology. The point to all of this is that the Genesis story is of Sumerian origin.
Here’s what people fail to understand and, if they understand it, they don’t realize the implications. That is, the Israelites were descendants of the Sumerians. To be more precise, they were Sumerians!
The Sumerians were the first advanced civilization on the planet (that we know of) and their writings are the oldest ever found. The Sumerians were far more advanced than even the great Greek civilization which came over 1,000 years later. The Sumerians wrote the very first creation story, the title of which was Enuma Elish (sometimes referred to as The Seven Tablets of Creation). Their creation story was written on six clay tablets with the seventh tablet devoted to honoring the Creator. That, of course, is exactly how the writer(s) of Genesis described the six days of creation with the Sabbath falling on the seventh day. The Sumerians also wrote the very first Flood story which was entitled the Epic of Gilgamesh. Both the Enuma Elish and the Epic of Gilgamesh are closely paralleled by the accounts of the Bible, which were written much later than their Sumerian counterparts.
It was the very same Sumerian gods mentioned in the Enuma Elish who brought with them this advanced civilization (wholly intact). By wholly intact, I mean that the Sumerian civilization appeared suddenly out of nowhere, with no antecedent whatsoever. History and civilization literally began in Sumer and the Sumerian knowledge and traditions would eventually be passed down to the Israelites. Keep in mind, the term Israelites came into being after Abraham. Before that they were known as Hebrews and in Abraham’s early days they lived in Sumer and were known as Sumerians. Yes, the Israelites were Sumerians.
Reinterpreting the Word of God
So when Judaism became a formal religion in the first century BC, the Levite priests reinterpreted the creation story to suit their new ideology (monotheism). At that time, Jehovah/Yahweh was converted from a tribal god (one of many) to the one and only god. However, if one understands that the Old Testament creation story is a retelling of Sumerian writings then it gives you a totally different picture of the genesis of man. Later, when Christianity subsequently adopted the Old Testament as gospel, they also accepted (unbeknownst to them) the old Sumerian gods which had been morphed into a single monotheistic god by Judaism. Oh, the strange twist and turns of biblical reinterpretation!
To complicate matters further, the Sumerian gods were not actually gods at all, but rather actual flesh and blood beings who looked very similar to us (homo sapiens). We know that because we have pictures which the Sumerians drew of their gods, along side of humans. The Sumerian writings clearly reflect that it was the Sumerian gods who created mankind, and not some divine Creator. All of which means that we really were created in the image and likeness of the “gods”.
Aside: It’s no wonder that that part of the story had to be suppressed because how could you have possibly built a religion around it.
However, that’s just the beginning of the story. Christianity became a formal religion in the 4th century AD. Some of the basis for their belief system comes from the New Testament. Here’s where things get very interesting. During that time, it was traditional for religious works to be written in what is referred to as a midrashic style of storytelling (e.g. see 2 Chronicles 24:27, International Standard Version). Midrash was a style of writing in which an old story is retold using contemporary figures. As such, it was never intended to be a history lesson. Actually, just the opposite was true as the writer would use a reconstructed story to drive home a point about morality. Therefore, these stories could not be read verbatim and were never intended to be taken literally. The true story was hidden beneath the surface and could only be understood by a handful of people who were spiritually advanced. Even Jesus’ disciples were unable to understand his parables.
Aside: Parables is a good example of midrashic writing and it was used extensively in both the New Testament and the teachings of Jesus.
Yet, despite this, a whole religion (Christianity) grew up around these gospel stories. One has to ask how was it possible for this to have happened. The answer is remarkably very simple – very few people understood the real message of the gospels and those that did intentionally left the masses in the dark. Further, the teachings of Jesus are, for the most part, not even included in the Bible. Actually, many of the writings about Jesus, for example the Gospel of Thomas, were intentionally left out of the Bible. After all, we wouldn’t want everyone to know about a mystical Jesus who taught about matters of the spirit (rather than the physical world), would we?
In the final analysis, neither Jesus nor the disciples ever taught Christianity. They were Jews and they followed the Torah. So the Old Testament was never about salvation but rather about the Law (the Torah). As for Christianity itself, it began as Roman Catholicism after the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, under the auspices of Emperor Constantine. It was conceived as a pagan-type religion so it could become the Roman imperial theology, a religion which would appeal to most Roman citizens (i.e. gentiles). As for modern-day Christianity, it has been about Christ in name only (i.e. accept Christ as your personal savior and be saved). Therefore, since you are already assured of salvation, there is no need for you to live your life based upon the teachings of Jesus.
Down through the ages, esoteric wisdom has always been reserved for the select few and therefore hidden from those who were not spiritually prepared to receive it. I refer to it as the “secret religion”. This secret wisdom, whether taught by Krishna, Buddha, Plato or Jesus was always conveyed behind a veil of allegory and symbolism. So, of course, it had to be withheld from the masses (see Ephesians 3:3,5; Romans 16:25; Corinthians 2:6-8 and Matthew 13:11). By definition then, the mysteries of the Kingdom of God could never have been included in the Bible. The Bible was intended solely for the masses, whereas this secret wisdom was taught, as church father Clement of Alexandria said, “to those who are being initiated into the great mysteries.”
Like Adam and Eve, before they ate from the Tree of Knowledge, the vast majority of people today are spiritually naked. Their understanding of God is based solely on church dogma and a holy book. Those who know better would like to keep it that way. They prefer that the masses never learn about any secret religion. But, of course… now you know.
“ If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him.”
It seems that Voltaire got it half right. To be more precise, though, God does exist but man invented him anyway. Isn’t reinterpretation a wonderful thing?