Remember all the fuss about Jesus having married surrounding the publication of The Da Vinci Code nearly a decade ago? Well now Harvard University Divinity professor Karen L. King has found an ancient papyrus fragment that actually refers to his having a wife. Professor King has published a paper in which she explains,
This is the only extant ancient text which explicitly portrays Jesus as referring to a wife. It does not, however, provide evidence that the historical Jesus was married, given the late date of the fragment and the probable date of original composition only in the second half of the second century. Nevertheless, if the second century date of composition is correct, the fragment does provide direct evidence that claims about Jesus’s marital status first arose over a century after the death of Jesus in the context of intra-Christian controversies over sexuality, marriage, and discipleship.
Harvard Divinity School has a Q&A page in which it provides answers to some of the obvious questions, such as:
1. Does the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife prove that Jesus was married?
2. How do we know this fragment is not a forgery?
3. What is the significance of the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife?
4. Who wrote the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife?
5. Why is the fragment called the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife?
6. What is the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife?
7. Where is the fragment from?