The book is written by Barrie Wilson and Simcha Jacobovici; the title is The Lost Gospel. Should we not ask if something “lost” has been found and is it a “gospel”?
In Jacobovici’s video, I stressed that his alleged “lost gospel,” Joseph and Aseneth, is a Jewish pseudepigraphon (a work written in honor of a biblical hero) composed by a Jew in the first century CE (or about then). The document was expanded by Christians who edited it and transmitted it to us in Greek, Syriac, Armenian, Latin (2 versions), Serbian Slavonic, Modern Greek, Rumanian, and Ethiopic. There is evidence that an Arabic version once existed. Clearly, the Romance found many homes and libraries; but no one has claimed or imagined it was a romance between Jesus and the Magdalene. The claim is novel. When I was interviewed, twice (once in Jaffa and once in the Old City of Jerusalem), I said that I totally disagreed with the claim that the composition,
Joseph and Aseneth, could conceivably be a cryptic story of Jesus’ alleged marriage to Mary of Migdal. My resistance has to do only with the narrative of Joseph and Aseneth.
You can find the entire paper here:
Charlesworth has previously defended Jacobovici’s claims, so this break is important. One thing Charlesworth mentions is he believes it is clear Jesus and Mary were “intimate.” His position is not because he doesn’t like to think of Jesus as married. He even goes on to say this present novel is more researched than Dan Brown’s book of similar storyline.
Rather, Charlesworth is clear. He echoes well-known scholar, Dr. Robert Cargill, in essentially saying The Lost Gospel is neither lost nor a gospel.
Charlesworth also answers (his own) the question about whether or not The Lost Gospel is indeed an allegory of the marriage of Jesus.
NO. Despite the claims in The Lost Gospel, and the misleading notes to the Syriac translation, Joseph is not a cipher for Jesus. Aseneth is not a veiled Mary Magdalene.
I cannot help but notice the adjective “misleading.”
Personally, I don’t think the canonical gospels, nor the earliest non-canonical (Thomas, specifically), reveal any such marriage of Jesus and Mary. Yet, as some who studies this particular portion of the past, I would find it stranger to believe Jesus lived and died a 33-year-old virgin than to accept his marriage.
To be honest, I sort of picture it as an early death of his wife, in childbirth.
But, if I were to wax romantically, I would suggest Jesus was married to a woman who was later killed by a Roman soldier, Pantera, who raped her and left her for dead. I would then suggest this is what drove Jesus into the desert, where in his insanity, he heard a voice from the heavens telling him he was the messiah, the one to free Israel from Rome.
I mean, the only that separates my fiction from Wilson, et al.’s, is that I will plainly tell you I’m pulling it out of thin air.