Biblical Archaeology Review 40:3, May/June 2014

Strata: “Jesus Married Mary Magdalene”—Gospel of Philip

Harvard’s Karen King has become famous to the general public because of the fourth-century papyrus that she wrote about for the Harvard Theological Review (HTR) in which Jesus refers to “my wife.”a King was careful to point out that this is not evidence that Jesus was in fact married—only that some Christians in the centuries after his crucifixion thought he was. Nevertheless HTR changed its mind and withdrew King’s paper from its January 2013 issue pending more (secret) tests relating to the authenticity of the fragment, despite King’s careful consideration of the authenticity question, including the judgment of two other eminent experts vouching for the fragment’s very likely authenticity. As of this writing, nothing more is known about the supposed tests or when they will be completed.

More recently, Professor King has written about another ancient document. In this case, Jesus’ wife is named—none other than Mary Magdalene! Professor King’s new study has recently been published in the highly respected scholarly journal New Testament Studies (NTS).1

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