XM. Bretton has requested I back up my claims for the mundane-ness of the real story of Jesus’ life and works.
This post is my effort to do so. If your faith is something you depend on but isn’t very strong, I suggest you stop reading about… here.
Let’s start with a simple lesson…
Was Jesus Married?
Quick answer, yes, the bible says so.
Many people have the idea the Mary Magdalene was a prostitute. Nowhere in the bible does it say this. The confusion arises through her being mentioned in the bible immediately after a story about a prostitute. In 591AD, Pope Gregory the Great (idiot) stated in his Easter sermon that Magdalene was the prostitute from the preceding story. However, the Vatican corrected this in 1969. She is officially NOT a prostitute. It is also recognised by the Catholic church that Mary Magdalene and Mary Bethany are the same woman.
It also doesn’t state, directly, in the bible that Jesus was married. It does, however, state that he was of the seed of David. Did you know that it was a legal requirement for descendants of the Davidic line to marry? AND to have children?
This alone doesn’t prove his marriage, though…
In marriage rites, one of the oils used to anoint is called Spikenard. This is what Mary Magdalene anointed Jesus with. (read your bible, it’s there)
At Simon Zelotes’ (Lazarus’) house, she anointed Jesus’ head. In June 30AD, She anointed his feet with spikenard at the wedding feast at Cana. She anointed them again in March, 33AD, and wiped them dry with her hair.
The ONLY person allowed to do this to a Davidic line descendent was his bride, and ONLY at the first and second wedding ceremonies.
First and second wedding ceremonies I hear you ask? Knowledge of Jewish customs which do NOT come ready-written in the bible would let you know that a Davidic descendent has very strict rules regarding marriage and procreation. This brings us to our next question therefore…
Was Mary a Virgin?
Well, the law regarding marriage had to be altered for kings because it was forbidden to divorce, but essential to have children… with no sex before marriage, if the bride turned out to be infertile then the royal line would end there and then. So there was a first marriage, after a betrothal period of three months, beginning, as it did for Jesus, in June.
Now, it was not until the first half of December of that year that sexual relations were allowed. This was to ensure that the baby would be born in September, the month of Atonement. If a baby was indeed born, the marriage was then legalised by a second marriage which would take place in the following March, again as it did for Jesus.
If there was no baby, there was no sex until the following December. Now, until that second marriage had actually taken place, the ‘bride’ was given the status of being an “almah”, which means ‘young woman’, and has no sexual connotations whatsoever.
At the time of the second marriage in March, the bride would be three months pregnant. Why wait three months if the woman is pregnant? They were smart people; they allowed time for the risk of a miscarriage.
Now, when they were not supposed to be baby-making, the husband and wife always lived apart. There were, of course, to be NO sexual relations except when it was allowed. So what happened? It is clear that Jesus was born ‘out of wedlock’ – at a time when he should not have been if Mary and Joseph had been behaving correctly.
This is why it is such a significant point, that Jesus was the son of an ‘almah’, which was deliberately played on to suggest that she was in fact a physical virgin. (as an almah should be)
I do not blame the church fathers for this, since it would have been deliberate right from the start. When Joseph discovered his wife to be pregnant there would have been a dilemma. The custom in these circumstances would be for him to ‘put his wife away’, whereupon the subsequent child would be taken and raised by priests as an orphan.
But they decided to keep him, evidently. And later it would be beneficial in an evangelical sense. The world around them was essentially pagan, and many of the cults involved stories of virgin births. It was thus much easier for those spreading the Christian faith to keep the play on words and imply the virgin birth of Jesus.
The ever present question of Jesus’ kingship was actually a reference to the question of his legitimacy. Many preferred to view his brother James as the legitimate heir.
Jesus had a brother? Yes. The bible says it perfectly plainly, yet still the church denies it. Why? Because if there were descendents of Jesus they would have a greater right to the Christian ‘throne’ than any of the popes.
So you see, the bible alone says many things that can only be understood with contextual knowledge which is not present within the bible. You have to read other books if you hope to understand the it.
This post just describes the marriage of Jesus and his virgin birth. There are simple explanations (that is, explanations not requiring the suspension of disbelief) for every single miraculous event of Jesus’ life. Ask me for one, and I’ll write that up for you too. How about the feeding of the 5000? Healing the blind? Water into wine?
Before I go, let’s have one more… did you know that Jesus was not born in Nazareth? The town of Nazareth didn’t even exist at the time of Jesus’ birth! It was actually Jesus the Nazarene, in reference to his belonging to the sect called the Nazarites.
For those who are really fascinated by this, the majority of this information comes from the collective works of Sir Laurence Gardner and Barbara Thiering. Both write fully referenced, scholarly books rather than ‘popular’ books that make outrageous statements without a hint of supporting info.