The Da Vinci Code

The Da Vinci Code, Part Nine: "The Mission of Jesus"

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Dan Brown, author of The Da Vinci Code, assumes that Jesus was married. He also assumes that a married Jesus is incompatible with a biblical view of Christ. We have seen that no credible evidence exists to show that Jesus ever married. We have also seen that the Jesus of the Bible could have married if He had wished. Brown’s case is so thin that it has to be measured in angstroms.

A question remains to be answered, however. If Jesus could have married, why would He choose to remain single? A biblical understanding of Jesus provides an answer to this question.

The Jesus of the Bible was not simply a great teacher, a moral leader, or a religious example. In Jesus Christ, deity and humanity are united in one person. This joining of two natures is absolutely essential to the mission of Jesus. In His own words, that mission was “to give his life a ransom for many” (Matt 20:28; Mark 10:45). He was announced as “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

The apostle Paul explains the meaning of the Christian gospel by stating that “Christ died for our sins,” and that “he rose again the third day” (1 Cor 15:1‐4). Jesus’ death and resurrection are news—they are events that occurred in space and time. Those events mean something, and Paulsummarizes their meaning in the phrase “for our sins.”

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The Da Vinci Code, Part Eight: "Could Jesus Have Married?"

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Author Dan Brown uses The Da Vinci Code to present a theory that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene and that the two of them had children together. The premise of The Da Vinci Code is that this theory, if true, would overthrow the New Testament view of Jesus. According to Brown, the Christian church has carefully suppressed the evidence for Jesus’ marriage and children.

As we have already seen, no ancient evidence supports the theory of a married Jesus. Brown says that all of his descriptions of ancient documents are accurate, but wherever his claims can be tested, they are found to be mistaken. Frankly, Brown’s claims leave responsible scholars of all stripes shaking their heads in disbelief.

Suppose Brown’s claims were true, however. Suppose the evidence showed convincingly that Jesus really was married and that He really did have children. Would this claim damage the Christian view of Jesus? Granted that Jesus did not marry; the question remains, could He?

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The Da Vinci Code, Part Six: "Did Jesus Marry?"

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The real core of The Da Vinci Code is the notion that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married and had children together. According to author Dan Brown, this notion is so shocking that Christianity since Constantine has carefully suppressed the evidence that proves it. He seems convinced that the whole Christian faith would collapse if Jesus had a wedding.

This theory forces us to answer two questions: first, could Jesus have married and had children, and second, did He? Each question deserves an answer, and if either question is answered contrary to Brown’s assumptions, his whole theory will deflate like a punctured tire. If Jesus could have married, then Christianity does not depend upon the question of whether He did. If Jesus did not marry, then Christianity does not depend upon the question of whether He could.

Brown seems to assume that the Jesus who is worshipped by the Christian churches could not have married. He seems to think that the marriage of Jesus would unravel the whole fabric of Christianity. He never attempts to substantiate or even examine this assumption. He simply advances evidence that he considers adequate to show that Jesus did actually marry and have children. What is his evidence?

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The Da Vinci Code, Part Five: "The Apostle Mary"

The early Christian community had to invent an entirely new vocabulary. In order to develop new terminology, the followers of Jesus took old words and invested them with new, technical meanings. The word for shepherd became the title of a church office (pastor), as did the word for old man (elder) and a word for servant (deacon). The word for the evening meal became the name of a Christian ritual (the supper). Christians actually used the general term for an assembly to designate the church itself.

Christians adapted these words into technical terms, but they also continued to use them in their older, more general sense. Technical and non‐technical uses are intermingled in Christian literature. Sometimes this intermingling can create confusion: occasionally a usage is not clear.

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