The Da Vinci Code

My mother is one of many that refuses to see The Da Vinci Code for religious reasons because it proposes that Jesus Christ had a child with Mary Magdalene. Keep in mind that the book is a piece of FICTION. It doesn’t claim to be the truth, people!! She’s a fan of Ron Howard films and Tom Hanks and even the author of the book (Dan Brown), so I know she’d see it otherwise. One of my Aunt’s went to a seminar/lecture of some sort about how “evil” the film is, and that is obviously adding fuel to a fire of ignorance. Plus the Catholic Church has recommended to all devoted members to avoid the movie. The film is not evil nor is it even blasphemous. It’s a hypothetical “what if?” take on the life of Christ and the effect it would have on today’s world. It’s a movie that makes you think and ask questions, which naturally the Church is opposed to. A Q&A was posted on a Catholic website (see http://www.catholic.com/library/cracking_da_vinci_code.asp) about the book. Here’s a sample, with the basic core arguments underlined: 


What is one to make of The Da Vinci Code’s specific claim that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene?

It is impossible to take this claim seriously.
The reason that Brown and a handful of others (chiefly New Age authors) have tried to identify Mary Magdalene as the wife of Jesus is obvious: She is one of the few women disciplines of Christ who is prominent, whose name we know, and whom we don’t know was married to someone else. Other female disciples of Jesus are known to be married to others (e.g., Joanna the wife of Chuza [Luke 8:3]) or are too insignificant (“the other Mary” [Matt. 28:1]) or we don’t know their names (the Syro-Phoenecian woman [Matt. 15:28]). If one wants to force Jesus into the role of being married, Mary Magdalene is one of the few prominent and (seemingly) available women to be pushed into the role of being his wife. 

Furthermore, there is nothing in the New Testament that states or implies that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. According to the New Testament, Mary of Magdala was a devout follower of Christ and one of the first witnesses of his Resurrection (cf. Matt. 28:1), but not his wife. There is no evidence in the New Testament or the writings of the Church Fathers that she was married to Jesus. 

Jesus also said things that indicated that he wasn’t married to anyone. He explained that some voluntarily refrain from marrying in order to be fully consecrated to God. He says that they “have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake” (Matt. 19:12). He portrays voluntary abstention from marriage as the highest form of consecration, and as the spiritual leader of the Christian movement, it would be strange for him to hold up such a standard if he himself did not meet it. 

Moreover, the early Church was unanimous in regarding Jesus as unmarried. This is not a later doctrine of the Church Fathers but something found in the New Testament itself. The authors of the New Testament regularly depict the Church as “the bride of Christ” (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:21-33; cf. Rev. 21:9-10). This metaphor would never have developed if a flesh-and-blood “Mrs. Jesus” was living just down the street. Only if Christ was celibate would the Church have come to be depicted metaphorically as his bride.

 
Clearly, the Da Vinci Code suggests Jesus was married and the Church suggests otherwise. What is important to note is that both are simply suggestions. Neither side has proof of their claims. The Church simply uses the Bible as it’s sole source, and Dan Brown used… well, whatever sources. What everyone must realize is that the Bible is a story. The Da Vinci Code is a story.

Catholics: Don’t treat the movie or the book like the plague. The book/movie will bring up questions (and god forbid people step back and question their faith), but it also makes you seek out more answers. After reading the book, I did a bit of research about the Bible and the life of Jesus. I learned more about Christianity. And isn’t that a good thing? Finally, if you fear that the book/film will shake up your faith, then perhaps your faith isn’t as strong as you thought. Something to think about.
 
I myself am going to see the movie because it looks very interesting and well done. And that’s all it is, people. It’s entertainment.

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