Mary Magdalene along with other women visited the tomb of Jesus on Easter Sunday morning to apply fresh spices to the body of Jesus who was crucified on Friday. The agony and pain carried by Mary Magdalene for Jesus has lead to visit Jesus early before the sun rise. As a matter of fact, for all believers of Christianity, this moment of Mary Magdalene witnessing an empty tomb the absence of Jesus physical body provides a strength to the faith of believers with the fact that Mary Magdalene carried the message of resurrection of Jesus first to the disciples and to the entire world.
On the other side, if Mary Magdalene would not visit the tomb of Jesus on Easter Sunday morning, how the world would view the death and resurrection of Jesus, and how the gospel and missionary work of Jesus would be carried on, such as these questions would arise whereas by witnessing an empty tomb, Mary Magdalene has brought a message to the world that Jesus has risen from the dead. This amazing fact and for this purpose, Jesus may have chosen Mary Magdalene in spite of the fact that, Jesus had 12 ardent and strong followers as disciples who knew and witnessed the Lord’s miracle work and missionary work.
In Matthew 28:1-2 angels declare that Jesus has risen and Jesus cannot be found among the dead and this message was first disclosed to women who visited the tomb. In Mark 16:4-5 it was stated that stone on the tomb was rolled away, and an angel was seated in side the tomb to tell that Jesus has risen from the dead and this resurrection message must be carried to all. Among all women who visited the tomb of Jesus, Mary Magdalene was the first to meet Jesus after the resurrection and also as the first person to disclose the message of resurrection of Jesus to the disciples of Jesus.
The life of Mary Magdalene was one part, wherein on several occasions, was pointed out as a rich woman who led a luxurious and lavish life, who lived a family life along with brother Lazarus and sister Martha, and who possessed demons and was also viewed by people as a sinner. The second part of Mary Magdalene life began with the association of Jesus gospel work , and there was a great transformation and change in the life of life of Mary Magdalene.
Mary witnessed the life of brother Lazarus which was brought back by Jesus, Jesus participation with Pharisees and Sadducees along with disciples in feast and how Jesus motivated and preached the teachings. Mary Magdalene was present on several occasions with Jesus which provide an understanding that Mary Magdalene after choosing to follow Jesus did not go back to the old life and remained with Jesus until the resurrection and Jesus accepted the presence of Mary Magdalene every where.
Many scholars also state that Mary Magdalene was the best female disciple of Jesus and men disciples disliked this fact. Jesus did not permit Mary Magdalene to touch Jesus, after the resurrection, and this is quite notable as “noli me tangere” which means “Don’t touch me, for I have not ascended to my father as stated in St. John 20:17. Just after this episode, a week later Jesus visits doubting Thomas along with other disciples and asks to touch Jesus hands and side as stated in John 20:24-28.
With the above facts, it is a very strong and evidential fact that Mary Magdalene was the closest disciple of Jesus who maintained well tuned relation with Jesus in all respects and Jesus did not deny this. Mary Magdalene life after Jesus is another interesting point of view as Jesus and Mary Magdalene were lead to the birth and inception of The Holy Grail and it is also interesting to take note how this has been achieved. 2. Gospels of New Testament about Mary Magdalene All the four gospels of New Testament speak about Mary as Mary Magdalene.
It can be stated here that if Jesus showed much appreciation for Peter among men disciples Mary Magdalene was the most appreciative among women disciples of Jesus and Peter disliked this and as per Gospel of Thomas, Peter on several occasions asked Mary to leave Jesus and disciples and also stated that “for women are not worthy of life” (Bart D. Ehrman, Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene, page. 254). There is also a question whether it was Mary Magdalene who laid the foundation for the birth of Christianity, and that Mary was the first apostle of Jesus who lead to the church movement.
Mary Magdalene was cured from seven demons when Jesus was journeying from one place to another preaching the good news about kingdom of god. (Luke 8:1-3) This was the first inspiration that has drawn Mary towards Jesus. In the second instance, during crucifixion Mark 15:40 along with other women viz. , Mary the mother of James, Joses and Salome, Mary Magdalene was also present for visiting the tomb of Jesus. Again in Math 27:56 Mary Magdalene with other women Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of sons of Zebedee.
In John 19:25 Mary Magdalene was standing at the cross along with Mary the mother of Jesus, mother’s sister and Mary the wife of Clopas. After the crucifixion of Jesus, Mark 15:47 states that Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses were looking where Jesus was laid. Matt 27:61 states that Mary Magdalene and other Mary were sitting opposite the sepulcher. Mat 28:1 states that after the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the grave. Mark 16:1 states that after the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Salome brought spices to anoint the body of Jesus.
On the occasion of resurrection of Jesus, it is stated in John 20:1, Marg Magdalene came to the tomb on the first day of the week and it was still dark and Mary Magdalene saw that the stone was already taken from the tomb. Mark 16:9 states that Jesus after the resurrection, the first day of the week, first appeared to Mary Magdalene from whom Jesus casted out seven demons. In John 20:18, Mary Magdalene announced to the disciples as “I have seen the Lord”. Luke 24 states that women took the spices and went to the tomb of Jesus on the first day of the week and found that the stone was rolled away from the tomb.
Women when entered the tomb, did not find the body of Lord Jesus and saw two men in dazzling garments who said “why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but he has been raised. Remember what he said to you while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners and be crucified, and rise on the third day”. Immediately women among whom was Mary Magdalene was present along with Joanna, and Mary the mother of James and others who visited disciples and unfolded the message of resurrection of Jesus.
This fact was first not accepted by disciples who did not believe the fact that Jesus would definitely rise from the dead on the third day after the crucifixion. This discussion clearly indicates that the presence of Mary Magdalene is constant from the time of crucifixion, during the burial of Jesus and most importantly the resurrection of Jesus. In all the three phases of Jesus crucifixion and resurrection Mary Magdalene was persistent and faithful to meet Lord Jesus Christ.
This strongly communicates that Mary Magdalene was truly the first apostle of women who longed for the presence of Jesus and did not look back to the old life which was filled with luxuries and riches whereas Mary Magdalene was pursuing Jesus taking note of every good news of gospel work performed by Jesus. 3. Character analysis of Mary Magdalene Some people identify Mary Magdalene as “sinner” who anointed Jesus feet in the home of Simon, the Pharisee as stated in St. Luke 7:36-50 whereas there is no concrete evidence for this.
Mary Magdalene is portrayed as an ardent follower of Jesus as it is revealed in the scriptures of New Testament in several places of gospels which describe about the association of Mary Magdalene with Jesus viz. , St. Mat 27:56, 61: 28:1, Mark 15:40,47. 16:1-19; 8:2, 24:10, John 19:25, 20:1-18. Magdala means “tower or castle” is a prosperous town on the coast of Galilee, three miles away from Capernaum, wherein there are many dye work factories and Mary is from this city which is why Mary is called as Mary Magdalene.
The perfume/oil Mary uses to anoint the feet of Jesus was very expensive to an amount of $ 17,000 worth which was approximate wage of 300 days ($7 per hour x 8hrs per day) which strongly confirm the fact that Mary had great respect for Jesus and the fact that Jesus could forgive the sins of Mary Magdalene. Jesus clearly understood this fact and developed deep sympathy for Mary Magdalene and condemns the words of disciples against Mary Magdalene. St. Mark 14:3-9, St. Mat 26:6-13.
The Gospel of John also identifies Mary Magdalene is also identified as a sister of Martha and Lazarus who was raised from the dead John 11:1-44 and the fact that Mary was at the feet of Jesus when a dinner was arranged in Martha and Mary’s home and did not participate in the domestic help for Martha. Mary as Magdalene is first introduced in St. Luke 8:2, and Jesus had driven seven demons out of Mary, who is called Magdalene as stated in St. Luke. As per New Testament, Mary Magdalene presence is quite evident at the time of crucifixion and after the resurrection of Jesus.
In fact, Mary Magdalene was the first person to meet visit after the resurrection of Jesus. Luke 23:27 says “ a large number of people followed him, including women mourned and wailed for him”. Mat 27:55 ”She was there at the cross” . It gives an understanding to the people that Mary Magdalene after meeting Jesus, never looked back to the old way of life, and continued to life with God. Mary was faithful, steadfast and strong follower of Jesus until crucifixion and after the resurrection of Jesus.
At the time when Jesus was carrying cross to the calvary Mary was present among those women who wept for Jesus and also as a witness for the death of Jesus on the cross as stated in Mark 15:40, Luk 23:48 and John 19:25. Particularly, when Jesus body was wrapped in linen clothes and was kept in tomb as per Jewish customs, Mary Magdalene spends lot of amount for purchase of dry spices and liquid spices as stated in Mar 16:1 to be applied for the body of Jesus on the Sabbath day.
Mary visits the tomb early before the sun rise and finds that the body of Jesus was not present in the tomb, and talks to two angels who question “Woman, why are you crying? ” John 20:13 and Mary answered “They have taken my Lord away, and I don’t know where they have put him”. The message of Jesus resurrection was first unfolded to the world by Mary Magdalene and Jesus first spoke to Mary Magdalene after the resurrection by saying “Greetings” (Mat 28:9) and Mary proclaims this message to the disciples as “I have seen the Lord” John 20:18. 4. Holy Grail
The Holy Grail is a cup which was used by Jesus Christ at the time of Last Supper to drink wine and this was the same cup used by Joseph of Arimethea (12th Century) to hold the blood of Jesus while on the cross. The term “grail” is derived from Latin word gradale which means a dish brought to the table in various stages during the course of a meal. According to the Christian mythology, the Holy Grail is deemed to be possessed with miraculous powers and Joseph d’Arimathie late 12th century passed Holy Grail to Great Britain. The description of Holy Grail is 17cm high, in the form of a cup having a body and a base.
The cup finely carved and carries 28 pea-sized pearls, two balaxes and two emeralds. An inscription is also ingraved on the back which was first read and publicized by the archaelogist Antonio Beltran. According to some documents, the Holy Grail stood at Saint Juan de la Pena Monastery at least in 1399 and in the same year, King Martin brought it to the chapel of Royal Palace at the Alfajeria in Zaragoa. After the death of King Martin, in September 1410, it was taken as a property of Barcelona. In 1424, The Holy Grail was transferred to Valencia Royal Palace and in 1437 Dan Juan, King of Navarran presented Holy Grail to Valencia Cathedral.
From here, Holy Grail was moved to Alicante and to the towns of Ibiza and Palma de Mallorca. As on today, The Holy Grail is preserved in Valencia Cathedral. The Holy Grail was first discovered in The Last Supper, the painting by Leonardo Da Vinci who painted Last Supper on the wall for church community and there are questions whether the Holy Grail or the Holy cup was present in the painting. Leonardo drawn the sketch of painting from the Gospels as stated and there were many hypotheses to declare Holy Grail as a literary invention and also to decide whether it is a cup?
, platter, stone or religuary. Many other writers also claim the Holy Grail as a fictitious device and there are many arguments about this. In Mat 26:27 it is stated “And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;” and a similar verse in repeated in all other gospels, which indicates that in the Passover feast, Jesus did use cup which later took the form as The Holy Grail predicted to be used by Joseph Arimathea and Mary Magdalene. This vessel used by Jesus is presumed to be the Holy Eucharist as described in the Synoptic Gospels of the New Testament.
There are also other arguments that Mary Magdalene, travelled along with brother Lazarus and Joseph Arimathea and brought the Holy Grail to the coast of France. Further there are arguments whether in the Last Supper painting, Mary Magdalene was present amidst of Jesus and disciples and to this Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code states that the person sitting next to Jesus in the Last Supper was not Mary Magdalene and it was John, the disciple of Jesus. Here John appears as a woman in the painting made by Leonardo and it depicts the art work and the imagination in that era.
The Holy Grail is the preserver of Jesus missionary work and the service delivered by Jesus to the humanity. The comparison of the sacred vessel or Holy Grail with Mary Magdalene is made here that both the sacred vessel and Mary Magdalene had the presence of Jesus who performed respective jobs in the missionary work of Jesus while on earth. Sacred vessel indicates that Jesus did participate in the Last Supper along with disciples before the crucifixion and Mary Magdalene represents as the first woman apostle who lead to the movement of christian church.
5. Analysis from Old Testament about the word “Rabbi” In the gospel of John 20:13, Mary Magdalene says “They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him”. Even in spite of the fact that Jesus stood by the side, Mary Magdalene did not recognize and mistakes Jesus for a gardener and says “Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away” (John 20:15) In John 20:16 Jesus says “ Mary” and immediately Magdalene recognizes Jesus and says “Rabbouni” which means “teacher”.
In John 1:38 “Then Jesus turned and saw them following, and said unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master) The original language of Old Testament is Hebrew and Rabbis are fluent in Hebrew. Jesus was a Jewish Rabbi. Teachers of Jesus were Jewish Rabbis and the main book Jesus studied was the Bible – the Old Testament. Hebrew language is considered to be a holy language and God when created the universe, God used Hebrew Alphabets and each of these letters have a shape and a special meaning.
In Hebrew language the Old Testament is called as Torah which means law. Therefore Rabbis according to Old Testament are the teachers of law and Jesus was a descendant from Jewish community and was also participating in the teaching and preaching about the kingdom of God and also about the laws of social issues as well political issues. In this manner, Mary Magdalene addressed Jesus as Rabbi calling Jesus as teacher. This clearly states that Mary Magdalene learnt many facts about spiritual living and how the kingdom of God should be practiced on earth.
6. Dan Brown “Da Vinci Code” Dan Brown’s “Da Vinci Code” states that Mary Magdalene was the Holy Grail, as the vessel that carried Sangreal (Holy Grail in the Medieval French). The French word for blood is sang, which indicates a fact that Mary Magdalene was carrying the royal blood or the holy blood of Jesus as stated in the books Holy Blood, Holy Grail and The Da Vinci Code. As per this source, Dan Brown in the novel, depicts a fact that Mary Magdalene with at least one child secretly trying to enter France and seeking a refuge in Jewish community.
According to this fiction, Jesus and Mary’s child called Sarah, is presumed to be an ancestress for Merovingian royals. At this period of 12th century, the popularity of Mary Magdalene was placed at greater heights and it was also one of the darkest period of civilization. It is stated that the wedding of Cana took place between Jesus and Mary Magdalene and mother of Jesus who was present instructed all the servants to carryout the instructions of Jesus when there was not enough wine.
In the Jewish custom, bachelorhood was not acceptable and marriage was honored. In Matt 19:4-5 it is stated “ Have ye’ not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said for this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh”. In weddings, mostly it is mother of bride or groom spend time and organize in the matters of food and drink and take interest to see that guests are satisfied.
In the wedding of Cana, Mary the mother of Jesus was worried about the arrangements made at the wedding in spite of the fact being a guest as stated in John 2:3-10. There are many questions for a common man understanding whether was this acceptable to Mary Magdalene and whether disciples accepted this arrangement. This is one part of an argument whether did Jesus truly part of this fiction or was this a fact? And there is no end for such as these doubts who worship Jesus as Lord and Savior of the world.
Some writers have truly suggested that the wedding at Cana was none other than Mary Magdalene’s own wedding with Jesus who was present with disciples. (Meera Lester, Mary Magdalene, page. 38) Another argument is that whether Mary Magadalene was present in Last Supper along with Jesus. The Da Vinci Code believes that Mary Magdalene was present in Last Supper and the novelists asks the readers to look for “V” created by the positions of disciples to the right of Jesus. The letter “V” stands for Sacred Feminine. “The symbol of hieros gamos, sacred marriage, is a six pointed star.
One half of the star is made by a “V”. The other half of the star is a pyramid, a male symbol of power. The Da Vinci’s The Last Supper could reflect the artist’s beliefs regarding the importance of Mary in Jesus’ inner circle – that she was the wife of Jesus and also the Holy Grail, a human chalice to contain the savior’s blood line” (Meera Lester, Mary Magdalene, page 40) 7. Mary Magdalene bearer of the Holy Grail What is the significance of Holy Grail and what is it? These are some of the questions that interest the common man.
According to the scholars, the sacred vessel that was used to hold the blood of Jesus while on the cross which was held by Joseph of Arimathea is termed as Holy Grail and another belief is that the sacred vessel that was used by Jesus to drink wine at the Last Supper is also termed as Holy Grail. Holy Grail is precious and is a historical evidence that Jesus did live and die on the cross. Another legend also states that a jar was held at the foot of cross to hold the blood of Jesus on the cross, which was held by Mary Magdalene. Vessel has become sacred because the vessel carried the holy blood of Jesus.
(Margaret Starbird, Mary Magdalene: Bearer of the Holy Grail) The Holy Grail is a powerful symbol for Christianity for it is a sacred evidence of Jesus blood and chastity it carries to the entire world of christianity. The echoes of Grail promise many truths for Christian believers that precious blood of Jesus who died on the cross for bringing salvation to the entire world that whoever believes in Jesus and confesses sins, such people would be forgiven and are permitted to live a born-again life. Jesus emphasized on life of faith as the prime most important aspect in a Christian life.
Why the Holy Grail is carried by Mary Magdalene and why not disciples or why not others? The answer to this question would be explained as, a story in Southern Coast of France states that Mary Magdalene was the bearer of the “sangraal”, the French word translated as “holy grail” as Magdalene was a devoted follower of Jesus and most prominently, the first person who met Jesus on Easter Sunday morning, Mary took note of all the events after the crucifixion of Jesus and silently decided to proclaim the gospel of Christianity which is why, Holy Grail is held as a sacred vessel by Mary Magdalene.
In other words, the seed that was preserved by Jesus and Mary Magdalene is known as The Holy Grail which presumably carries mystical powers and also the presence of Christ. Here it can stated that Jesus has chosen Mary Magdalene to be the bearer of Holy Grail, or Mary Magdalene all by self, has consecrated the whole life to preserve the Holy Grail after the ascension of Jesus.
According to the New Testament, all through the Gospels, there are no texts cited about either Holy Grail or about the life of Mary Magdalene after the ascension of Jesus. There are no evidences, how old are the gospels written in New Testament whereas going by the each scripture portion, it depicts the sanctity and power of Jesus on earth. Even in the letters written by Apostle Paul, there are no citations or discussion about Mary Magdalene as the bearer of Holy Grail.
In the garden of Gethsmane, before the arrest of Jesus while Jesus was praying (John 17:1-26) (Mark 14:35-39, Mat 26:36-44). Therefore, historical evidence prove that Mary Magdalene as the bearer of Holy Grail whereas Holy Bible New Testament does not carry or state any scripture in this regard neither by Gospel writers nor essentially by Apostle Paul who has written 22 letters on the gospel of Jesus Christ which indicate that it was St.
Paul who has brought a daylight to Christianity. 8. Conclusion Whether a fiction or a fact that is based on Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, according to the New Testament, Jesus came into the world as Messiah, “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us (Mat 1:23).
The teachings of Jesus especially sermon on the mount Mat 5:1-19, miracles, parables and teachings are closely relevant to this day and the application and implementation of these theories have always given perfect results which is why Christianity is considered to be a fruitful and life giving religion in the world and any contradictory theories to this effect would disappear through the time whereas the teachings of Jesus, the works of Holy Spirit would continue to lead believers.
Bart D. Ehrman, Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene http://books.google. co. in/books? id=WsQpdzzC7oMC&dq=Mary+Magdalene&pg=PP1&ots=FFCegubqjv&source=in&sig=isSozHQC45SGH8zIg–m9Q3UUlM&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=11&ct=result Meera Lester (2005), Mary Magdalene Accessed 5 December, 2008 http://books. google. co. in/books? id=LIMBrOJ0zGgC&pg=PA31&lpg=PA31&dq=Mary+Magdalene+and+Holy+Grail&source=bl&ots=YJoq3ZwQ4s&sig=JKSjW0tdg73-fsxgOVsO-LDoc_s&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=8&ct=result Mary Magdalene and The Holy Grail Accessed 5 December, 2008 http://www. newconnexion. net/article/05-05/mary_magdalene. html
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 1 December 2016
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