The Jesus mystery
The gospels state that Jesus believed that God was his ‘Father’, that he had eternal life and already existed at the beginning of creation, and that he was the Bridegroom and being the Bridegroom was part of his mission. Biblical scholars have difficulty explaining these unusual beliefs many Christians accept without questioning. Is it possible to shed some more light on these peculiar dogmas of Christianity?
That may be possible. The mystery can be explained by assuming that the earliest Christians believed that Jesus was a reincarnation of Adam, that Mary Magdalene was a reincarnation of Eve and that Eve is a Mother Goddess who gave birth to Adam, and by doing so became the Mother of the rest of humanity. In this way Jesus was the Bridegroom as well as the Son of God, while Christians can be called children of God.
Born of God the Father
The Gospel of John is remarkably different from the other gospels. For instance, it states that Christians are born of God the Father.1 Similar statements can be found in the first letter of John.2 Men cannot give birth so it would seem that the gender of God has been obfuscated and God is a Mother. A question that may arise is that if the early Christian leaders have removed all the evidence of God being a Mother then how could they have overlooked this? The answer is that they probably didn’t.
The Gospels were written in Greek or translated into Greek. Greek mythology allows for such a peculiarity. In Greek mythology the goddess Athena was born from the head of the male god Zeus. Perhaps for that reason Jesus is referred to as ‘godhead’ in some of the letters of the Church Fathers. In modern translations this word is replaced by terms like ‘divinity’, ‘divine nature’ and ‘divine being’.3 Christians now believe that being born of God is meant in a spiritual sense. That may not have been the original meaning.
If the original sources from which the Gospel of John was compiled were oral stories or written texts in Hebrew or Aramaic, this phrase might reveal the gender of God, as being born from a male deity comes from Greek mythology and not from the Jewish tradition and religion, and such a peculiarity is unlikely to be inserted during translation. The next question might be why? Such a construct could have made a great compromise at a time when many Christians still believed that God is a Mother.
The Jewish deity Yahweh is male so for Jewish Christians it may have been easy to accept the change. For others this may have been different. Syria was one of the first gentile areas where Christianity had spread. The acts of the apostles discuss the church in Antioch as early as 42 AD.4 As there were a substantial number of Christians in Syria already, it would have taken time to erase an established idea like God being a Mother.
The Gospel of John may have been written to cater this particular need, and to bridge the gap between the Pauline doctrine of God being a Father, the Jewish doctrine that God is unobservable and unknowable by humans, and the belief that God is a Mother which may have existed with the gentile Christians. The letters of Ignatius of Antioch indicate that this gospel was widely used in the early Syrian Christian community.5
The Gospel of John depicts Jesus as being in an eternal union with God. The nature of this union may have been marriage as Jesus said that he and ‘The Father’ are one. Marriage is the way to become one with another person. This makes sense when Mary Magdalene and Jesus were believed to be Eve and Adam reincarnate. And so the stage may have been set for Jesus becoming divine in Christian theology. To Jews this may have been offensive so Christianity may have separated itself from Judaism.
In this Gospel Jesus called his mother ‘woman’ and not ‘mother’.6 Calling her ‘mother’ would have caused confusion if Jesus referred to God as Mother too. More evidence can be found in the Odes Of Solomon. Ode 19 stands out. It has the following lines:
A cup of milk was offered to me: and I drank it in the sweetness of the delight of the Lord.
The Son is the cup, and He who was milked is the Father.
And the Holy Spirit milked Him: because His breasts were full, and it was necessary for Him that His milk should be sufficiently released.
And the Holy Spirit opened His bosom and mingled the milk from the two breasts of the Father; and gave the mixture to the world without their knowing.5
This clue may be important for a few reasons. It is an old text that may date from before 100 AD. It circulated amongst the earliest Christians in Syria. There are no other ancient Christian texts mentioning any gender related attributes of God. Here God is definitely depicted as having female physical characteristics despite being called Father. It supports the argument that the phrase being born of God originally related to the gender of God.
Jesus referred to himself as the Bridegroom7 and the Kingdom of God is represented as a wedding banquet.8 Hence, the wedding mentioned in the Gospel of John could have been Jesus’ marriage. This might explain why his mother was occupied with the lack of wine at the party.9 If Jesus had been married to God, this marriage may have turned him into the Christ.10 This might explain why Jesus started doing miracles at the wedding.11
Another question may be why the early Christian leaders have altered the gender of God? It is written that Paul experienced a psychosis in which Jesus appeared to him and called him.12 Paul joined Jesus’ followers shortly after Jesus allegedly died. According to the Gospels Jesus attracted all the attention, for instance by doing miracles, and perhaps Jesus was the only person who experienced evidence of Mary Magdalene being God. Paul may not have believed it and the other disciples may have had their doubts too. They were Jews who were taught to believe in the existence of an invisible male deity.
The idea of Eve taking Her son Adam as Her husband is lewd. It may have made the relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus problematic. It might give people the impression that incest is permitted or even recommended. In the First Epistle to the Corinthians Paul had to deal with a situation where a man was sleeping with his father’s wife. Apparently the Christian community approved of it.13 Such acts may have provided a moral ground for the modifications Paul invented.
Some of the Gnostic Gospels portray a close relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus. One names her as Jesus’ companion.14 Another mentions that Jesus loves her more than the other disciples and kisses her often.15 A third notes that Jesus loved her more than the other women.16 The Gnostic gospels don’t suggest that Mary Magdalene was God nor do they portray a marriage between her and Jesus.
The Gnostics were mystics who claimed to have secret knowledge about Jesus’ teachings and the nature of reality. Jesus claimed that his kingdom is of another world and can’t be observed.17 Gnostics believed that physical reality is a trap forged by an evil creator that keeps us separated from the Highest God. The idea of physical reality being separate from the immaterial world of ideas comes from Greek philosophers like Plato. Gnosticism also stressed the importance of individual experience. Gnosticism was banned after Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire.
Gnosticism developed gradually from the second century onwards. The Gnostics and the Church may have started out using the same sources when the evidence of God being a Mother was already erased, but not the evidence of Jesus’ close relationship with Mary Magdalene. The different agendas brought about different redactions. To the Gnostics the close relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus probably wasn’t an issue. For the Church this may have been different as Christian theology made Jesus divine. An intimate relationship with Mary Magdalene didn’t fit into this picture.
The Gnostic Gospels suggest that Jesus loved Mary Magdalene more than the other disciples. Hence, the Beloved Disciple in the Gospel of John may have been Mary Magdalene. One verse mentions Mary Magdalene and the Beloved Disciple separately.18 It may have been a falsification to obfuscate their intimate relationship. Another verse lists three women, namely Jesus’ aunt, the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene, and then implies that the Beloved Disciple was one of them.19 There apparently had been rumours that the Beloved Disciple was immortal.20 This makes sense if the Beloved Disciple was the avatar of God.
The contradictions in the accounts of the life of Jesus inspired a number of books like the Da Vinci Code. The Da Vinci Code is about an alleged conspiracy in the Roman Catholic Church to hide the relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus. The book depends on the idea that the person at the right hand of Jesus in Leonardo da Vinci’s painting of The Last Supper is not the apostle John, but Mary Magdalene. Mary Magdalene having been the most important person in Jesus’ life is modern knowledge that was not available to Leonardo da Vinci. It is therefore a peculiar coincidence that the Beloved Disciple is believed to have been John while John has a female appearance on many renaissance paintings.
Featured image: Bible: Only God Knows What Jesus Really Said. Loesje.org.
1. John 1:12-13 [link], 1 John 4:7 [link]
2. 1 John 5:1 [link], 1 John 2:29 [link], 1 John 3:9 [link], 1 John 4:7 [link], 1 John 5:4 [link], 1 John 5:18 [link]
3. Acts 17:29 [link], Romans 1:20 [link], Colossians 2:9 [link]
4. Acts 11:19-26 [link]
5. The Lost Bible: Forgotten Scriptures Revealed. J.R. Porter (2001).
6. John 2:4 [link], John 19:25 [link]
7. Luke 5:34 [link], Mark 2:19-20 [link], Matthew 9:15 [link]
8. Matthew 22:2 [link]
9. John 2:3 [link]
10. John 3:27-29 [link]
11. John 2:9 [link]
12. Acts 9:3-5 [link]
13. 1 Corinthians 5:1-2 [link]
14. Gospel of Philip: There were three who always walked with the Lord: Mary, his mother, and her sister, and Magdalene, who was called his companion. His sister, his mother and his companion were each a Mary.
15. Gospel of Philip: And the companion of the saviour was Mary Magdalene. Christ loved Mary more than all the disciples, and used to kiss her often. The rest of the disciples were offended by it and expressed disapproval. They said to him, “Why do you love her more than all of us?” The Saviour answered and said to them, “Why do I not love you like her?”
16. Gospel of Mary: Peter said to Mary, “Sister we know that the Saviour loved you more than the rest of woman. Tell us the words of the Saviour which you remember which you know, but we do not, nor have we heard them”. Mary answered and said, “What is hidden from you I will proclaim to you”. And she began to speak to them these words: “I”, she said, “I saw the Lord in a vision and I said to Him, Lord I saw you today in a vision”.
17. Luke 17:20-21 [link]
18. John 20:1-2 [link]
19. John 19:25-27 [link]
20. John 21:21-23 [link]