‘The Lost Gospel’ Wishful Thinking? Expert Says, ‘Pious Folk Make Things Up’
The Lost Gospel, a book that claims that Jesus Christ was married and had two children, has rocked the Christian community, but is it just wishful thinking? One Church scholar in Oxford says the book’s authors are simply the latest in a long line of people in search of meaning in a place where there is none. Nevertheless, the authors say they knew the push-back would be formidable.
According to ABC News, the authors of The Lost Gospel, Simcha Jacobovici and Barrie Wilson, claim to have made their book by translating a 1,500 year-old version of The Story of Joseph and Aseneth from the original Syriac, along with a letter that went along with the document. They say that the story fills in critical gaps in the new testament, such as the 30-year gap between Jesus’ childhood and adulthood.
According to The Lost Gospel, Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene and fathered two children, drastically altering his identity as a abstinent holy man. Not only that, but Magdalene was the “daughter of god,” holding an essential position in the early church. The authors explained that this version of Jesus’ story was repressed to satisfy Pauline Christianity.
“Our gospel, in contradiction to Paul’s asceticism, talks about the importance of marriage and the intensity that it takes, that’s where the gospel—the element of good news comes in—it enriches the understanding of fulsome sexuality.”
The Lost Gospel is being rejected by wide variety of Christian groups, according to the Daily Beast.
Rev. Andrew Symes, executive secretary of the conservative Anglican Mainstream, said The Lost Gospel is more trend than Bible.
“The arguments they use are purely sort of New Age neo-pagan trendy Californian stuff and a mixture of Eastern esoteric beliefs. It’s got nothing to do with what the Bible says.”
Diarmaid MacCulloch, professor of the History of the Church in the University of Oxford, told the Daily Beast that the new interpretation found in The Lost Gospel is implausible, but explained the book as the work of pious scholars.
“The Bible has never said enough about the lives of its characters to satisfy piety, so pious folk make things up. The difference now is that when such texts are ‘rediscovered,’ they are regarded as texts suppressed through Church conspiracy. We’re pattern-making animals, so we love a conspiracy theory.”
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the text in question, The Story of Joseph and Aseneth, has been studied in depth, calling into question how much of a “new interpretation” the text truly is.
Simcha Jacobovici and Barrie Wilson knew they were in for some skepticism, the question is if their work will still hold up to in-depth analysis, which seems questionable at the moment. Still, they argue that their interpretation can be the Church’s solution to the obstacles they face in the modern world. The call to accept female priests and allow marriage among the clergy has been growing over the years. If The Lost Gospel is true, it means that women were always intended to have equal footing in the church.
What do you think of The Lost Gospel’s claim that Jesus’ was married?
[Image Credit: Juni/Wikimedia Commons]