By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
(CNN) - A newly revealed, centuries-old papyrus fragment suggests that some early Christians might have believed Jesus was married. The fragment, written in Coptic, a language used by Egyptian Christians, says in part, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife ..."
Harvard Divinity School Professor Karen King announced the findings of the 1 1/2- by 3-inch honey-colored fragment on Tuesday in Rome at the International Association for Coptic Studies.
King has been quick to add this discovered text "does not, however, provide evidence that the historical Jesus was married," she wrote in a draft of her analysis of the fragment set to appear in the January edition of Harvard Theological Review. The divinity school has posted a draft of King's article to which AnneMarie Luijendijk, an associate professor of religion at Princeton University, contributed.
"This fragment, this new piece of papyrus evidence, does not prove that (Jesus) was married, nor does it prove that he was not married. The earliest reliable historical tradition is completely silent on that. So we're in the same position we were before it was found. We don't know if he was married or not," King said in a conference call with reporters.
"What I'm really quick to say is to cut off people who would say this is proof that Jesus was married because historically speaking, it's much too late to constitute historical evidence," she continued. "I'm not saying he was, I'm not saying he wasn't. I'm saying this doesn't help us with that question," she continued.
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In the accounts of Jesus' life in the Bible, there is no mention of his marital status, while the accounts do mention Jesus' mother, father and siblings. The four Gospels - Matthew, Mark, Luke and John - tell the story of Jesus' birth and early childhood then skip to his short, three-year ministry before detailing his death and resurrection.
The idea that Jesus was married is not a new one.
In other writings about the life of Jesus from antiquity suggest Jesus may have been married to Mary Magdalene, a disciple who was close to Jesus. Author Dan Brown also used the idea of Jesus being married as a jumping off point for the fictional novel "The Da Vinci Code." King dismissed that notion in her call with reporters.
“There’s no indication we have that Jesus was married,” said Darrell Bock, a senior research professor of New Testament studies at Dallas Theological Seminary. “One could say the text is silent on Jesus’ marital status is because there was nothing to say.”
Initial dating for the honey-colored fragment by the team of scholars puts the papyrus piece coming out of the middle of the second century.
King is referring to the fragment as the "The Gospel of Jesus' Wife" or "GosJesWife" as a short hand for reference, and noting that the abbreviation does not mean this scrap has the same historical weight as the canonical Gospels.
Biblical scholars often use the term gospel to refer to a genre of ancient writings featuring dialogue between Jesus and his disciples, King notes in her paper. The Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Mary and the Gospel of Judas are just a few of the ancient accounts about the life of Jesus that Christians do not consider canonical.
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At the conference, King said another professor suggested the fragment could have come from the text of a homily, or sermon, where the writer was using this phrase as a literary device. She told reporters that while she will consider that as a possibility, the fragment is “probably a gospel. Probably from the second century and most close to the Gospels of Mary, Thomas and Philip.”
Bock agreed with the notion that the text fragment shared similarities with those gospels, called the Gnostic Gospels, which were the writings of an early outlier sect of Christians. He said the text could be referring to a "gnostic rite of marriage that is a picture of the church and Jesus, not a real wife."
But he added, "it’s a small text with very little context. We don’t know what’s wrapped around it to know what it’s saying.”
Bock said it’s likely to be a gnostic text if it proves to be authentic. “The whole text needs vetting. She’s doing the right thing to release it and let scholars take a look at,” he said, adding “it’s a little bit like trying to analyze the game in the first quarter.”
“It’s a historical curiosity but doesn’t really tell us who Jesus was,” Bock said. “It’s one small speck of a text in a mountain of texts of about Jesus.”
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The owner of the fragment has been identified by King as a private collector who has asked to stay anonymous. The owner brought the fragment to Harvard have King examine it in December 2011.
King then brought it to the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University. Roger Bagnall, the institute's director and an expert on papyrus, examined it and determined it to be authentic, Bangall confirmed to CNN.
Ariel Shisha-Halevy, professor of linguistics at Hebrew University, Jerusalem, who was asked to examine the authenticity, according to the draft of the article, told King via e-mail, “I believe - on the basis of language and grammar - the text is authentic. That is to say, all its grammatical ‘noteworthy’ features, separately or conjointly, do not warrant condemning it as forgery.”
Little is known about the origin of the text. Because both sides of the fragment have writing on them, King said it could have come out of a book rather than a scroll.
"Just like most of the earliest papyri of the New Testament and other literary and documentary papyri, a fragment this damaged could have come from an ancient garbage heap," the King says building on prior research by Luijendijk.
King writes "the importance of the 'Gospel of Jesus’ Wife' lies in supplying a new voice within the diverse chorus of early Christian traditions about Jesus that documents that some Christians depicted Jesus as married."
The Smithsonian Channel also announced Monday that it will air a special on King's findings on September 30.
What you just said in your broadcast about jesus being married is by far the lowest remark your network has said. I have watched you for over 25 years and today I challenge your network that I can provide you with pictures of the holy spirit, baby jesus and the holy spirit, the holy spirit and baby jesus and mary his mother and many more pictures that the world or catholic church hasn't seen. Being a messenger of god and having to experience watching and taking pictures of biblical figures of the bible are hard to see let alone spread the message.Write me back and tell me where i can send you pictures that are biblical this aren't made by computer or touched up. THIS ARE REAL AND ITS ABOUT TIME YOU AND THE WORLD SEE THE FACE OF JESUS I HAVE HIS PICTURE> amen
Get back to the hospital and on your meds...you are stupid
See here is Jesus picture on my morning toast. And that's Bugs Bunny right next to him on the right with his arm around Elmer Fudd. Jesus is the tall guy in the picture with the big coke rock up his nose.
Just ignore this guy. He is either in need of more medication, or he is just a goof looking for attention like a whiny little child.
um, ok...links please
my e-mail email@example.com this is for elmer fudge coke bottle, ect. e-mail me so you cans see pictures then you can comment
Yesterday, 9/18/12, Harvard Divinity Professor Karen King announced she had found a scrap of papyrus from c. 400 AD written in Egyptian Coptic, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife'". Did Jesus really marry Mary? If only there was a clue...did he marry Mary? Marry Mary?! That seems to be encoded message!!
In 1119 AD the Knights Templar excavated beneath the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and found valuable scrolls of sacred geometry and early writings on Y'shua ben Yosef and Mariamne that stated they were MARRIED. He was a 'prince' from the Tribe of Judah and was born on 17/4/748 AUC (April 17, 6 BC) and crucified on 7/4/783 (Friday April 7, 30 AD). Magdalean was a 'princess' from the Tribe of Benjamin and was born on 8/5/752 (May 8, 2 BC). MM was first married to John the Baptist – Jesus' first cousin – and bore him a son: John (the Apostle). When the Baptist was killed by Herod II, Jesus – in the Jewish tradition of the day – married Mary and adopted John son of John. This is why they were allowed to be present at the Cross during crucifixion since only immediate family was allowed that 'honor' by the Romans.
In Leonardo Di Vinci's 'The Last Supper', St. John the Apostle is to Jesus' immediate right. He is depicted as a woman and many – including author Dan Brown – have speculated that Leonardo encoded his painting with this being Mary Magdalean: his wife. Yes, but Da Vinci was also encoding that John looked alot like his mother! This story was wide-spread among the Gnostics/Freemasons of 15th century Europe.
I have a picture of a guy names Hey Joos banging his wife.
Wanna swap ?
please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
jesus may have been commenting on IF he were married then his wife would be his deciple.
Nope, Jesus chose to Marry Mary.
Of course he was married... He would have looked like a total freak to people back then if he wasn't married at his age.
During the wedding reception, Mary says to Peter,
Is Jesus pulling that Water into wine stunt again.
Peter says, yes Mary, he also told me to pull his finger !
For a believer like me, married or not makes little difference. It's the extremely conservative Christians who will look at this and panic. Even the people examining this fragment admit that #1, it's from the fourth century, hardly eye witness material. #2, it's one tiny fragment. Hardly conclusive proof. So, to all my very conservative brothers and sisters, take a breath, relax, because Jesus is still Lord.
O – I forgot point number 3 – some of them say it's gnostic writing. If you know about gnosticism, you know that means it's incredibly likely to be inaccurate.
gnostic is to be certain but we can't expect a christian to get their definitions correct
No – gnostic is about knowledge. There was a cult of people called gnostics who believed the path to heaven was "secret knowledge." So they had all sorts of "secret books" with secrets about Jesus and other people – books that have been completely rejected by scholars, even athiest scholars, as a bunch of garbage.
The truth is always most important, right? The Christian Church – especially Catholics and Orthodox – has always denied equal rights to women, yet Jesus did Marry Mary and they had a daughter Sarah together. Magdalean after Jesus was the #2 leader and teacher of Judeo-Christianity and this needs to be recognized!
At the moment, coptic means blashemous. The 'fragment' looks reducted, words 'wife' and 'mother' are similar. It must be a 'typo,' a flash in the pan.
As Jesus was dying on the cross,
he look towards the sky, and in a loud voice screamed,
Scotty, beam me up you son of a bytch.
Who would it have served if Jesus (PBUH) wife was kept out of the picture ?, Why would the Son of god need a wife. it is commonsense that she would have divided the faith. St. Peter/Church won this one. Do we still need to hide from this. In this day and age of empowered women. It is my choice and I as a Christian I accept that Mary Magdalene is the wife of Jesus (PBUH). prove me wrong
I do not require any proof that Jesus was married. I do, however, require proof that Jesus was the son of a God. Until that little nugget of information is verified as fact, all the rest of these claims are crap.
Kind of like asking "What kind of music does Bigfoot like to listen to when he is sad?".
Example to followers of proper relations
And why would God have a son ?. Jesus was a son of Marry, an other miracle of God to show to his followers how big an powerful he is.
"Jesus was a son of Marry, an other miracle of God to show to his followers how big an powerful he is."
Rape isn't powerful, it's disgusting.
To Eric.G, to answer your question, It is my point of view that Jesus (PBUH) is the Son of God based on the simple statement that reads "god made man in his own image". Therefore i'm Proud to also be a son of God.
You're right! Jesus(74=J10+E5+S19+U21+S19) and Mariamne(74=M13+A1+R18+I9+A1+M13+N14+E5) did marry(75=M13+A1+R18+R18+Y25)!
Sorry, "your view" is irrelevant. What if "your view" told you that you were a god? Should we all give that view factual relevance?
You will need to satisfy the burden of proof inherent to your claim.
PROOF: Jesus wasn't gay!
Serge, his wife's name was John.
Jewish male mid thirties.
Wore Toga & sandles.
Hung around with 12 "dudes".
Long hair & beard.
Wandered the desert speaking to people.
Stoned gay guy.
This stuff comes and goes. Gnostic "gospels," Gospel of Whoever...no shortage of this stuff floating around.
It's always fascinating that people will scoff at 800 pages of ancient manuscripts now called the Bible, but as soon as any scrap of ancient manuscript comes along that presents a different story, that scrap is revered as more significant than the 800 pages.
Wrong. This "stuff comes" and continues to come because it's true!
If only there was a clue...did he marry Mary? Marry Mary?! That seems to be encoded message!!
Like I said, people rush to believe any ancient manuscripts EXCEPT what we now call the Bible. You make the point nicely.
Thats all those 800 pages are,
a bunch of scraps hobbled together.
Its all garbage.
But i will admit that i would like to see the missing stuff,
you know......the stuff they DONT want us to see.
Of course new material that gives a new angle to an otherwise well known – up to boredom – story creates some amount of interest.
What! This is blasphemy! I shall kill you for such a statement. Oh, sorry, I forgot. I'm not an Islamic. Carry on.....
Why even bring up Islam? You may want to seek help for you obsession.
First, we don't say i am not an islamic. I let u correct your vocabulary. And what has Islam to do with this?. Islam is like any other religion, cristianism, judaism etc ... What makes the difference are the people. And before el qaeda, it was irland terrorism IRA, basque terrorism ETA, and and and so please have a big vision and open mind and stop baming Islam, religion of peace. U can not critic something if you don't read about it, becoz if u do so, u r just saying nosense as a fool
Good(7__4) point(74)! GOD(7_4) wants us to be more tolerant of different views. Have you heard of 'Simple(6,74) English(7,74) Gematria(8,74)'? Google it, it's quite enlightening!
In the Bible, Jesus refers to the corporate Church as his Bride. Anyone think this may be what He is referring to here? Just asking...
Jeebus never says that in the bible. If you think he did, you've been brain washed.
Wrong. The word 'corporate' does NOT appear in the Bible, nor does Jesus talk about "his church". Please do NOT spread misinformation.
The Revelation of Jesus the Christ to St. John does refer to "his bride" in 19:8. We should always interrept the Bible both literally and figuratively. (It's also encoded and we need to know the codes for another interpretation.) Therefore, to fulfill prophecy, the Second Coming of the Christ must marry a literal bride (MM reincarnated?) and must either unite his Church and be recognized as its leader, and/or 'marry' each denomination.
Study Revelation 6:9-11, the fifth seal proclaiming there will be still another great persecution of the church, the death of the wife of Jesus Christ. This will be at the time of the beast (antichrist), the false prophet, and the image and mark of the beast, you will take the mark of the beast, or the image (humanoid) of the beast (antichrist) will have you put to death (Rev. Chapter 13). Mathew 24 Jesus is talking about the same time:
For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. V 8 All these are the beginning of sorrows. V 9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake (Matt.24: 7-9). This is the wife of Jesus Christ, those who will endure great tribulation (the seven trumpets) until the end (telos meaning the end, termination, the limit at which a thing ceases to be (always of the end of some act or state, but not of the end of a period of time, the aim or purpose Strong's # 5056). The aim or the purpose is the mystery (dispensation of grace, Ephesians 1:9-14) of God. But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel (of the great tribulation), when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets (Rev.10:7), and if you go to Revelation 11:15-18 the rapture of the bride as the seventh and last trumpet of the great tribulation begins (Paul's twinkling of an eye 1 Cor.15:50-52) to sound. Jesus Christ's wife are those who endure great tribulation until the end (telos) as the seventh trumpet begins to sound, they will refuse to fall away (2Thess.2:1-4), they will refuse the mark of the beast and will prefure death for their testamony of Jesus Christ fulfilling the prophecy of the fifth seal (Rev.6:9-11). These are the wife of Jesus Christ who will go in the rapture to the marriage supper of the Lamb. Blessed are they that are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb and this is the true sayings of God (Rev.19:7-9).
The Holy Bible : King James Version
Strong, James: Enhanced Strong's Lexicon. Ontario : Woodside Bible Fellowship, 1996, S. G5056
The Holy Bible : King James Version.
And here is where christians are just like their muslim brothers. Dogged devotion to an ancient lie.
Did you know that the first Christian myrter was named Steven?
Y'shua ben Yosef (Jesus son of Joseph) was born on 17/4/748 AUC (April 17, 6 BC) and crucified on Friday 7/4/783 (April 7, 30 AD). He was very real and he was yet another reincarnation of 'God the Creator'. His eternal soul has been reincarnated many times since, recently as Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln, and Albert Einstein who is 'the key'(74) to the reincarnation question. Either Einstein returns with scientific proof of the transmigration of the soul, confirms many other 'direct reincarnations', and provides many 'beyond Einstein theories' that are paradigm-shifting or he doesn't show up. Google: Reincarnation Theory & its 23 Principles.
"the historical Jesus", there was no historical Jesus. You can be historical when all the historians who lived during your supposed life, and mention everyone else, even petty less important people, never mention you.
Actually, there are several non-Christian historical accounts of Jesus' life. See here for references:
Tacitus, Pliny the Younger, Josephus, the Babylonian Talmud, Lucian, and even the Koran all reference Jesus.
AD 034938 & Divdar – You miss Steve's general point. When he says, "when all the historians who lived during your supposed life", he is referring to the fact that Jesus has excactly 0 (ZERO, NIL, NADA) contemporaries that wrote about him. All the writings you refer to occurred 50-100 years or more after his death. Those writings are basically historical hearsay. It's like someone walking into a court of law and saying, I heard from a guy who heard from a guy that Bob killed his wife. Sorry, but that is not evidence.
"To err is human, to repent divine, to persist devilish" – Benjamin Franklin
We are all being judged by GOD(7_4) the 'universal quantum computer'. If God – Father Sol & Mother Earth – determine that your eternal soul inflicts more harm than good(7__4), then you will NOT be reincarnated as human for quite awhile. And when you do return, it will be far from a paradise-setting.
Loving this conversation...keep it coming. America is opening its eyes!
And his apostles asked "Why, Lord, can you not fish with us?"
We, the church, are the bride (wife), of Christ. Amen.
lilyq said – "We the church, are the bride (wife), of Christ"...
Good quote, and it explains why all the church's leaders have interests in boys. Thanks!
You can ask the question but if you're looking for an answer in the Bible, there are several references where Jesus is referred to as the bridegroom and his Church as the bride (=wife). Mark 2:19 [Jesus answered, "How can the friends of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? They cannot, so long as they have him with them. 20 But the time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them, and on that day they will fast.] In John 3:28, John the Baptist says ["You yourselves can testify that I said, "I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him." 29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom's voice. That joy is mine, and is now complete.] Ephesians 5:22-33 compares the relationship and union of a husband and wife to the union of Jesus and his Church.
Very good post, Jimmy Del Rio.
Ha ha ha, I love the posters on here saying the jesus really meant his wife, "the church." We are seeing more history being invented today!
The Talpiot Tomb (or Talpiyot Tomb) is a rock-cut tomb discovered in 1980 in the East Talpiot neighborhood, five kilometers south of the Old City in East Jerusalem. It is believed – at least by some – to be the tomb of Jesus Christ, his wife, his brother, his son and other family members.
Evidence continues to surface that Jesus Christ was a human, was married and had a child.
Yet, such evidence is always contested and attacked by those who will defend the church teachings no matter what.
Very interesting. What's your evidence?
Saw youtube video about this.
Was pretty good.
I always wondered, if Jesus had been "ressurected"
he would still have left his physical body here.
Somebody of that noteriety, i doubt he would have
been dumped in an unmarked grave.
Somebody would have (for good reason) hidden that body.
Imagine actually having the remains of Jesus Christ (If he was real).
There is a monestary in Scotland that claims to have the remains of Mary Magdalene,
But nobody has ever been allowed in to see it.
I can't wait for judgement day when Jesus comes down from his heavenly perch and eats the brains of all the non-believers.
He will gouge out the eyes of those who do not accept his message of love.
"He will gouge out the eyes of those who do not accept his message of love."
Because he is a teacher of love, of course.
Yep, that sounds like a married man!
Jesus Married? That is a good question, and the answer would be (according to the scriptures: Matthew 9:14-16; Mark 2:18-20; Luke 5:33-35) “Yes!” Jesus is the bridegroom to the church. He made this reference when asked about fasting (see below). Now I have a question for those who choose to believe that Jesus had a wife: If he had a wife; why was not Jesus’ wife standing before him, and/or kneeling in agony at his feet when he was on the cross. According to: John 19:24-26, there was no wife of Jesus present. (www.TheTruthBeMadeKnown.com/blog)
14 Then John’s disciples came and asked him, “How is it that we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples do not fast?”
15 Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast.
16 “No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse.
18 Now John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting. Some people came and asked Jesus, “How is it that John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees are fasting, but yours are not?”
19 Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? They cannot, so long as they have him with them. 20 But the time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them, and on that day they will fast.
33 They said to him, “John’s disciples often fast and pray, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours go on eating and drinking.”
34 Jesus answered, “Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? 35 But the time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; in those days they will fast.”
28 Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!”
29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God 30 will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.”
24 “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.”
This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said, “They divided my clothes among them
and cast lots for my garment.”[a] So this is what the soldiers did.
25 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman,[b] here is your son,”
You are joking right?
If he had a wife; why was not Jesus’ wife standing before him, and/or kneeling in agony at his feet when he was on the cross.
Mary Magdalene was not only at the crucifiction,
she was also at the tomb.
She was there to take the living Jesus away.
So if Jesus existed and had a wife, does that make him the tom Cruise of Xtianity?
Yes of course, if he was a Scientologist.
Scientology. Christianity. Potato. Potatoe.
The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.