A fragment written in the Coptic language has been discovered which quotes Jesus using the words “My wife…” This fragment which is supposedly dated from around 400 AD is causing a stir in the news and the internet.
So what about it? Was Jesus married? If so, to whom? Mary Magdalene? If Jesus were married, what would that change about what we believe about Him?
First let’s realize this is a single, partial (about the size of a business card!) fragment of some ancient document. We do not know the context of the statement nor the document from which it was taken. It is suggested it was taken from a non-cannoical “gospel”. In other words, from an ancient account of the life or teachings of Jesus which was judged in the ancient world as not inspired and not worthy to be included in the documents which were worthy of study as scriptures by the Early church.
One source suggested the fragment was likely found in an ancient garbage heap. I think the irony of such a discovery is made clear when we consider someone a thousand years from now doing excavations and coming upon a fragment of a tabloid claiming that we had been invaded by aliens. Can you imagine that discovery then being touted as suggesting that we actually had been invaded by aliens or even that anyone truly believed it back in our day? Let’s remember the fact that this is a single fragment that evidently wasn’t worth being kept and recoreded in the day it was written. Jesus wasn’t married, but He is engaged!
For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. (2 Corinthians 11:2 NASB)
Jesus isn’t against marriage, afterall He invented it! (Mark 10:6-9) The Bible teaches “Marriage is to be held in honor by all” (Heb. 13:4)
The blessing for every believer in Christ is that we know His marital status and His intentions. We know who He has committed Himself to. Jesus said “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:2,3).
Folks, there is no doubt about what Jesus said there, those are “wedding words”!