In his best-seller, The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown attempts to prove his key idea that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. He quotes the Gnostic Gospel of Phillip as authentication. Here are excerpts from the Gospel of Phillip:
1. Before Christ came, there was no bread in the world, just as Paradise, the place were Adam was, had many trees to nourish the animals but no wheat to sustain man. Man used to feed like the animals, but when Christ came, the perfect man, he brought bread from heaven in order that man might be nourished with the food of man. The rulers thought that it was by their own power and will that they were doing what they did, but the Holy Spirit in secret was accomplishing everything through them as it wished. Truth, which existed since the beginning, is sown everywhere. And many see it being sown, but few are they who see it being reaped.
2. Some said, "Mary conceived by the Holy Spirit." They are in error. They do not know what they are saying. When did a woman ever conceive by a woman?
3. The saints are served by evil powers, for they are blinded by the Holy Spirit into thinking that they are serving an (ordinary) man whenever they do so for the saints.
4. It is not possible for anyone to see anything of the things that actually exist unless he becomes like them. This is not the way with man in the world: he sees the sun without being a sun; and he sees the heaven and the earth and all other things, but he is not these things. This is quite in keeping with the truth. But you saw something of that place, and you became those things. You saw the Spirit, you became spirit. You saw Christ, you became Christ. You saw the Father, you shall become Father. So in this place you see everything and do not see yourself, but in that place you do see yourself - and what you see you shall become.
5. God is a man-eater. For this reason, men are sacrificed to him. Before men were sacrificed, animals were being sacrificed, since those to whom they were sacrificed were not gods.
6. The eucharist is Jesus. For he is called in Syriac "Pharisatha," which is "the one who is spread out," for Jesus came to crucify the world.
7. There are two trees growing in Paradise. The one bears animals, the other bears men. Adam ate from the tree which bore animals. He became an animal and he brought forth animals. For this reason the children of Adam worship animals. The tree [...] fruit is [...] increased. [...] ate the [...] fruit of the [...] bears men, [...] man. [...] God created man. [...] men create God. That is the way it is in the world - men make gods and worship their creation. It would be fitting for the gods to worship men!
8. In the place where I will eat all things is the Tree of Knowledge. That one killed Adam, but here the Tree of Knowledge made men alive.
9. The world came about through a mistake. For he who created it wanted to create it imperishable and immortal. He fell short of attaining his desire. For the world never was imperishable, nor, for that matter, was he who made the world.
10. The children a woman bears resemble the man who loves her. If her husband loves her, then they resemble her husband. If it is an adulterer, then they resemble the adulterer. Frequently, if a woman sleeps with her husband out of necessity, while her heart is with the adulterer with whim she usually has intercourse, the child she will bear is born resembling the adulterer.
11. There are many animals in the world which are in a human form.
WHOEVER THIS 'PHILLIP' WAS, HE DIFINITELY DID NOT KNOW JESUS AND HIS TEACHINGS.
He did not understand the story of creation (see 1 above); He was ingorant of Jesus' origin (see 2 above); Never understood Jesus' teachings about the Hagios Parakletos (see 3 above); Is at odds with the theology of the scriptures (see 4 & 8 above); He must have mixed-up his concept of a Father-Creator with a fiction story on cannibalism (see 5 above); Probably never read or heard the message of John 3:16 (see 6 above); He went completely psychotic when describing the reproductive capacities of man and vegetation (see 7 above); Contradicts every other biblical writer on the issue of the origin of our cosmos (see 9 above); Knows absolutely nothing about human reproduction (see 10 above); Either listened to too many mythologies on Mars Hill or had too many scary dreams or suffered a severe case of mental breakdown or, as it most likely appears, is a nom-de-plume for an agent of evil.
HAVE THE BONES OF JESUS REALLY BEEN FOUND?
Have James Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici actually tracked down the bones of Jesus Christ and his family? Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up—if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! —1 Corinthians 15:12-17
In a move almost certainly designed to garner attention, director James Cameron, who directed box office hits like Titanic, made a public announcement that archaeologists had discovered the actual body of Jesus. And they claimed they could back it up with DNA evidence.
Now here’s how it all played out. According to TIME magazine, back in 1980, a construction crew accidentally uncovered a tomb in suburban Jerusalem that had a bunch of bone boxes—or ossuaries—inside. And inscribed in the sides of those boxes were names like Jesus and Mary and Joseph and Judas and Jose—which of course, are some of the names associated with Jesus’ family in the New Testament. And the point they’re trying to make, of course, is that Jesus must still be dead because in essence, they found His coffin.
Now, before anybody gets their tail in a knot one way or the other, this isn’t the first time somebody has claimed to prove that Jesus didn’t rise from the dead. From the Passover Plot to The Da Vinci Code, people have been trying for years to prove that Jesus never rose from the grave. And right away, there are a number of questions I must ask about this:
First of all, there have been some claims that they used DNA evidence to prove that it is Jesus. And what I want to know is how in the world you check a body’s DNA to prove it’s Jesus. For that to happen, you must have a DNA sample you know is Jesus’ to compare it with—so just about the only thing they can prove is whether or not the bodies in that grave were related to each other. And given they were buried together, a common practice for families even today, that’s a no-brainer. The DNA tests also proved the “Jesus” in the tomb wasn’t related to a second “Mary” who was also in the tomb, which they claim is evidence that Jesus married Mary Magdalene. But of course, her name on the tomb wasn’t Magdalene it was Mariamene. And that makes it all a bit of a wishful stretch.
Then consider what New Testament expert Richard Bauckham from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland says: These names are so common that the odds of it actually being the family of the Jesus of the Bible are actually really, really low. In essence, they just haven’t proved anything.
Now here’s the question I really want to ask. Why is it that so many people actually want Jesus dead? I mean, if you take God out of the picture, what do you have left? When the philosopher Nietzsche tried to figure that out, he lost his mind. So why would people be eager to put Jesus back in a grave? Maybe for the same reason they wanted Him dead almost 2,000 years ago—they’re afraid He might have something to say that actually will require them to face the sinful issues in their own hearts head on.
You know, frankly, it’s going to take a lot more than a publicity stunt to pull down the Christian faith. Far too many people saw Jesus to explain this away as a conspiracy or a stunt pulled by the disciples. Frankly, you must ask why His followers would secretly bury His body and then publicly preach that He had risen from the dead. Don’t forget, with the exception of John, they all lost their lives for it. And if Jesus of Nazareth was actually buried in a family tomb in the city of Jerusalem, then why didn’t the enemies of the early Christian church just go and pull His body out to be done with it?
The answer is simple: Jesus isn’t dead. Because of that, you have hope. And judging by the despair of those who think that life really ends at the grave, knowing better is just a better way to live. By Shawn Boonstra