Chapter Eight Was Jesus Married?
ONE OF THE BIGGEST QUESTIONS RAISED IN THE DA VINCI CODE IS WHETHER OR NOT JESUS CHRIST WAS MARRIED. HIS MARRIAGE, IN FACT, FORMS THE BASIS OF THE WHOLE MEROVINGIAN THEORY, SO IT IS CRUCIAL TO FORM AN OPINION ONE WAY OR THE OTHER.
As Dan Brown stated on the ABC News show Primetime Monday, nowhere in the Bible does it say that Mary Magdalene was-a prostitute. The confusion has arisen through her being mentioned immediately after a story of a prostitute. The story was given credence in 591 when Pope Gregory the Great stated in his Easter sermon that Mary Magdalene and the prostitute were the same woman. This was corrected by the Vatican in 1969. Gregory the Great also stated that Mary Bethany and Mary Magdalene were the same woman.
It does not state in the Bible that Jesus was married. However, it would have almost certainly have stated the fact if he was not, if that were the case. It was as much a duty for a father to ensure that his son married when he reached a certain age as it was for him to ensure that he was circumcised when a baby. Furthermore there was a legal requirement for the heir to the Davidic throne to marry.
The rules that governed dynastic marriages, such as Jesus would have taken part in, differed greatly from those followed by ordinary Jewish people. The only reason that a sexual relationship was permitted to take place was to procreate. The whole marriage/sex custom was strictly regulated. Laurence Gardner goes into the subject in detail in Bloodline of the Holy Grail. There was a period of betrothal of three months and a First Marriage with anointing took place in September. This marked the beginning of the espousal period. However, it was not until the first half of December of the same year that a sexual relationship was allowed. This was to ensure that a baby would be born in September, the month of Atonement. If this liaison resulted in conception, the marriage was legalized by a Second Marriage which took place in the following March. If there was no conception, the sexual relationship could only resume in the following December. Until the Second Marriage, the woman was considered to be an almah. This meant “young woman,” which had no sexual connotation. It is also interpreted as “virgin,” meaning, obviously incorrectly in this case, “virgo intacto.” At the time of the Second Marriage in March, the bride would therefore be three months pregnant. The reason for this three month delay was to allow for a possible miscarriage. It also meant that the husband could withdraw from the marriage if the woman proved herself to be infertile. Apart from the time in December when sexual relations were allowed, husbands and wives lived apart.
At the point at which they separated, the wife was referred to as a widow which was one rank below an almah. She was required to weep for her husband, described in Luke 7:38 when she “stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears.” If Christ had been conceived during this “widow” period (and it does seem that he was conceived at some point before Mary and Joseph’s wedding was complete) that would make Christ the “son of a Widow.”This, of course, is how Hiram Abiff is referred to in Freemasonry; what Perceval is referred to as in the Grail legends; and what Horus is referred to as in Egyptian mythology.
One of the aromatic ointments used in the marriage rites was spikenard, which is used by Mary of Bethany, otherwise known as Mary Magdalene, to anoint Jesus. She anointed his head at the house of Simon Zelotes, better know as Lazarus. In June, 30 AD, she anointed his feet with spikenard at the wedding feast at Cana.
John does not mention the actual wedding at Cana -only the feast. Among the guests were the disciples and “unclean” Gentiles. It seems clear that it was Jesus who was the bridegroom on this occasion. When the incident concerning the lack of Communion wine arose, Jesus’ mother told the servants to do whatever he told them to do. It would be out of the question for a guest at a wedding to be allowed this right. The actual ceremony would take place the following September. Mary Magdalene anointed Jesus’ feet again in March, 33 AD, and wiped them dry with her hair. The only person who was allowed to anoint with spikenard was a Messianic bride and the only times that it was permitted were at the First and Second Marriage ceremonies.
It was the custom of the Egyptian kings to marry their sisters. The Kings of Judah did not follow this practice but considered that the regal succession went down the female line. John the Baptist was of the Zadok male line and the wives of this line always took the title Elisheba (Elizabeth) . The wives of the Davidic line, which Jesus belonged to, took the title Mary. This explains why both Jesus’ mother and wife are called Mary.
In one of the Gnostic Gospels, the Gospel of Philip, which the Christian Church repressed and which The Da Vinci Code’s Sir Leigh Teabing (whose name is a play on Holy Blood, Holy Grail authors Leigh and Baigent, of which Teabing is an anagram) considers to be “always a good place to start,” the affection between Mary Magdalene and Jesus is described, as Dan Brown tells us:
And the companion of the Savior is Mary Magdalene. But Christ loved her more than all the disciples, and used to kiss her often on the mouth.The rest of the disciples were offended by it and expressed disapproval. They said unto him, “why do you love her more than all of us?” The Savior answered and said to them, “Why do I not love you like her?… Great is the mystery of marriage -for without it the world would not have existed. Now the existence of the world depends on man, and the existence of man on marriage:•
Kissing on the mouth was a practice reserved exclusively for those who were married. What Mr. Brown does not mention is that in the Gospel of Thomas, when Peter says “women are not worthy of life,” Jesus responds, “I myself shall lead her in order to make her male … For every woman who will make herself male will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”
The Church has done everything in its power to suppress information about Christ’s marriage. In 1958 a manuscript of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople was found in a monastery near Jerusalem by Morton Smith, Professor of Ancient History at Columbia University.
He discovered a letter from Bishop Clement of Alexandria ( 150 AD to 215 AD) to his colleague Theodore in a book of the works of St. Ignatius of Antioch. Included was part of the Gospel of Mark which had previously been unknown. He stated that this part of the Gospel should be omitted as it did not conform to the teachings of the Church. The Gospel of Mark was significant as it was the first to be written and formed the basis of all the other gospels!
The part that was repressed has Lazarus, whom Christ is said to have miraculously raised from the dead, crying out from the tomb, indicating that he was not dead when Jesus saw him. Lazarus had, in fact, been excommunicated and this was considered as being on a par with death. The period that excommunication took to complete was four days. On the third day Martha and Mary sent a message to Jesus that Lazarus was about to lose his soul to eternal damnation. Jesus was there to reinstate him even though it was technically out of his power to help. In addition, the part that was suppressed did not mention the resurrection and ends with the women running out of the empty cave. The last twelve verses of the version of Mark 16 that we have today were added at a later date.
When the arrival of Jesus at the house where Martha and Mary live is described in John, it gives the impression that Mary is hesitant to leave the house. However in the part of the Gospel of Mark that was cut out, it explains that Mary came out of the house with Martha to greet Jesus, but the disciples told her to return indoors. The reason was that as Jesus’ wife, she was only permitted to leave the house with his permission.
Roman Catholics claim that St. Peter was the founder of the Catholic Church. The name Peter comes from the Greek petros, meaning stone, which was the name Christ gave to him. He had a reputation as a misogynist, or as Dan Brown would say, “a sexist,” and if that is true we can understand why the Church that he was instrumental in founding has disregarded women throughout history. However, if we are to believe that Mary Magdalene was good enough not only to be Jesus’ most faithful disciple, but also his wife, we have to ask ourselves such questions as why women are not allowed to be Roman Catholic priests? Furthermore, we must ask ourselves why the Church is unwilling to admit to the marriage of Christ? Given the evidence, we can only conclude, as Dan Brown does through the character of Sir Leigh Teabing, that the Christian Church wished to “declare itself the sole vessel through which humanity could access the divine and gain entrance to the kingdom of heaven.”