The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Did Jesus die a Virgin- Serious Question

I’d say with 98% conviction that he never engaged in intercourse or sexual expression of any kind. In other words; yes, he died a virgin. As for the other two percent of my conviction, it is heavily leaning towards the same conclusion.

Serious answer: we don’t have much information about that one way or another. For various thematic and practical reasons, I expect the answer is yes. But if otherwise, then He must have kept it private in order to protect the wife and we should respect that.

Are you saying that Jesus might have sinned? By knowing that He never sinned, can we not know that…well, that He never sinned? That would be plenty of information. I’m puzzled by your reply…

since when is sex inside marriage a sin?

it explicity says that He without sin, so i’d say He either kept a legal marriage quiet as Jason says, or simply didn’t do it.
that does assume that sex outside of marriage is sin, however, which is debated. but personally i don’t think He would’ve done this.

so…yes, i think He died a virgin. however, there’s a wedding on a cosmic scale coming, so i wouldn’t worry about it much!

Ok, so the premise is that He may have been secretly married. I’ll ponder that one…

that’s my premise, and Jason’s, not the OP.
i think he’s trying to work out how/if Jesus stayed a virgin til 33

i think it’d have been largely expected from a respectable Jewish man at the time…but i could be wrong. our modern culture is very different.

tbh i don’t think He was secretly married. it doesn’t really work with the symbolism of the church being the bride

Right, although I somewhat suspect Garf’s premise was “trolling”. :wink:

I don’t think it’s impossible, and there are a few things in the Gospels that might hint in that direction; but on the balance I doubt it.

MaryBeth (and MaryMag if they are the same woman which for various reasons I strongly expect they are) pledging herself to Him as His wife, yes. Jesus actually accepting this in that sense and consummating the relationship, doubtful. But not impossible.

Had this not been a sinful world in need of the cross, though, I totally believe (though I might still be wrong) that there would have been a marriage.

Actually, what would have been strongly expected, and especially from a rabbi, was marriage as soon as feasibly possible.

However, someone having taken a Nazarite vow might be considered exempt from that expectation.

That’s one strike against it, yes; however, after thinking that way for several years I realized that since we’re talking about symbolism, Christ Himself as the one Mediator symbolically represents us in our relationship to the Father, and Israel was elected by God to symbolically represent all fallen humanity, etc.–so really there would be no problem along this line with one woman being chosen to represent redeemed humanity as the unique bride of Christ.

If Christ withers a tree as an enacted parable, and if marriage between man and woman is an enacted transposition of the relationship between God and Creation (and especially but not limited to rational creation, especially but not limited to those who believe :wink: ), then Christ could marry as an enacted parable.

Heck, if anything, the OT would lead us to expect God Incarnate to elect a woman of low repute to save and to marry (and to be betrayed by and to reconcile with)–the scriptures are not only crawling with exactly that analogy, God outright orders the prophet Hosea to embarrass himself choosing that kind of wife for purposes of enacting a parable about God’s relationship to Israel!!

(Hosea being, of course, a variant of the name Joshua!)

:open_mouth: I’m both impressed and scandalized by everyone’s humble openness to this possibility. Wow.

Jason, if you have the time, could you elaborate on this? In my simple readings, I have never found such things.

Is Sin defined as something that was unlawful?
Is Sin defined as breaking the Law?
Is Sin defined as not following traditions of the Law?

If this is the definition of Sin, then Jesus is a sinner because He did what was unlawful, He broke the Law many times in favour of helping others and he definitely deviated from the traditions of the Law for the purposes of helping others.

The definition of Sin is what makes answer if Jesus sinned, a reality or not.

i think we’re allowed to question everything…God gave us minds to use, afterall! :slight_smile:

Yeah sure, I encourage you to think. I mean, I’m happy to reconsider the deity of the Christ, the personality of the Holy Spirit, the inerrancy and primacy of Scripture, faith alone for salvation, even ECT and almost every other doctrinal stance I grew up with… but Yeshua’s celibacy?! That’s just going too far! :smiley:

This is both a serious and an important question, in my opinion. I too have a firm conviction that Jesus Christ did not engage in sexual intercourse during his lifetime, but I also believe that he should have gotten married and started a family, contrary to mainstream Christian belief. As I’ve explained in my other posts, I am a Unificationist, and we believe that Jesus actually came to establish a true family here on earth. But due to the unfaithfulness of Israel, they rejected and crucified the perfected Adam against the original will of God the Father (Isaiah 9:6-7; Matt. 2:5-6, 23:37; Luke 1:32-33, 19:44; Acts 7:51-53; 1 Cor. 2:8).

But do these facts nullify the Gospel preached by Saint Paul? Did the sacrifice of Christ Jesus on the cross come to naught? In the words of the Divine Principle (1973, p. 142), “Not at all (John 3:16).” Our faith in Jesus’ cross and His resurrection certainly brings about spiritual redemption. Christ established the “basis for spiritual salvation by forming a triumphant foundation for resurrection through the redemption by the blood of the cross” (HSA-UWC, 1973, p. 148).

However, it is obvious that humanity still struggles with the sin of Adam and Eve; we await eagerly for the redemption of our bodies and our adoption as true sons and daughters of God (Romans 8:18-25). Christ came to earth in order to restore the fallen lineage of Adam and become the True Parent of all humankind, but was inhibited by several factors, which I describe in my response to Pog’s post here: [Conditional Open Preterist Universalist).

If, according to the Unificationist understanding, Christ was to become the True Father of humankind, how much more would He have needed a spouse to truly become that True Parent? Indeed, we acknowledge that the Second Advent of the Christ must be to fulfill what had been postponed during the Last Days of the first century of the Common Era. Saint Mary Magdalene would certainly have been in the position to be betrothed to the Lord had He not been crucified. Logically, through marriage to the Son of God, she would have became the True Mother of humankind in place of Eve. Through the holy marital and sexual union of the Son and Daughter of God, Jesus and Mary Magdalene would have begotten children untainted by the sin of the first Adam and Eve.

The Christian Era has been a history of persecution and prosperity. The first 400 years was a time of severe persecution under the Roman Empire, until Constantine I made Christianity the state religion of the Byzantine Empire. Christ spiritually reigned after the destruction of the Jewish temple in 70 AD, but founded a substantial kingdom under Constantine I. However, Christ’s lineage has yet to be passed on to the whole world, and the original sin has yet to be fully liquidated. This is why a substantial “Second Coming” of Christ must be accomplished in these contemporary “Last Days”. The Lord of the Second Advent must be born on the earth through a woman to accomplish the true mission of the Messiah.

Extra-Canonical References:

The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity. (1973). Divine principle. New York:HSA-UWC.

This is one to which I have never found an answer. If Jesus had been married, or had some other sort of sexual relationship, we’d expect to know about it. Similarly if a Jewish man in the period had got to age 33 without being married that would have been remarkable enough to note as well.

I think I can only say definitively that we don’t, and possibly can’t, know.

It would have been remarkable but not necessarily a negative stigma; it could be considered a strength of zealous dedication to God. St. Paul doesn’t seem to have ever married and he was a Pharisee of the Pharisees! John the Baptist never seems to have married and he was highly regarded even outside Christianity.

If the Shroud of Turin turns out to be real, Jesus’ hairstyle would mark Him as having taken Nazarite vows and those could preclude marriage.

So, not really a problem.

Wouldn’t the cup that Jesus shared at the last supper have been a cup of wine? If so then He couldn’t have been a nazarite, unless he also would have shaved his head, which then the shroud would show a bald man.

Nazarite vows could go different ways, giving up alcohol wouldn’t have to be one of them. Nazarites normally didn’t go bald, but rather didn’t cut all or some part of their hair–the root of the word itself comes from the description of an unshorn vine, and the first institution of Nazarite vows (in Numbers 6) primarily involves this. (The Turin Shroud shows a bit of a well-kept tail haircut.)

It’s just a visibly enacted self-disciplinary faithfulness as a witness to other people that God is worth making sacrifices for. A vow of chastity would serve the same purpose, only moreso.

Notably, while Jesus made water into wine at Cana, I don’t recall that we actually see Him drink wine until the Lord’s Supper, at which time He takes a vow not to drink it again until He can drink it anew with them in the kingdom of God to come. And it’s kind of fuzzy whether He Himself actually drank the wine even then! ("‘Take this, and share it among yourselves; for I am telling you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine from now on–until the day I drink it anew, when the kingdom of God arrives.’ And all of them drank from the cup.") I doubt a vow about this was supposed to exclude a Jew from partaking in the Passover ritual, though, and that required wine. Strictly speaking we only see Jesus drink wine once: the sour wine offered on the cross shortly before He died, finishing His sacrifice.

If a Nazarite broke his vow or became unclean in any way, He was required to offer a special sacrifice and start the vow over again. The hair was originally grown long (in the original criteria established in Numbers), but was intended to be cut off eventually to be offered as a burnt sacrifice to God, when the vow expired. (For this reason King Agrippa and his brother-in-law King Jannai each sponsored half of a group of poor Nazarites who had come to complete their vow by shaving their heads.) If the vow involved all the hair on their heads, then all the hair would be shorn at the completion of the vow, and that may be where you’re getting the idea of bald heads.

The duration by the day of Jesus was voluntary and could range from an hour to a lifetime, set to end under various conditions specified during the oath. In the days of the Mishna compilation, Nazarite law filled a whole tractate, and the standard length was 30 days, but two or three oaths were usually made at once each regarded as separate to be fulfilled one after the other.

While the original version of Nazarite vows required that they not touch corpses, Samson Nazarites were allowed to do so in honor of the heroic Nazarite judge. (On the other hand they weren’t allowed to cut their hair for any reason, while normally perpetual Nazarites were allowed to cut and sacrifice their hair once a year to keep it from being unruly. Note that Samson engaged in drinking bouts and certainly had an active sex life!–though this was not necessarily a good thing. :wink: ) In the case of Jesus, He brought corpses back to life by touching them!–so it is debatable whether He would have been rendered unclean by them. (Worth noting though is that after healing His first leper, whom He had warned not to tell anyone about but who went out telling anyway, angering Jesus, He was required to stay outside towns until such time as they would expect Him to perform cleansing rituals! (Mark 1:45 & par) That He’s later easily shown entering and leaving cities despite His increasing popularity indicates the problem wasn’t popularity but perceived contamination from touching the leper.)

Note: some of the preceding information is borrowed from the Nazarite entry of the 1908 Jewish Encyclopedia, which can be found here. The information is admittedly not inerrant, as the editor mistakes John the Baptist for Jesus once. :wink:

I have heard that Paul was a member of the sanhedrin, and that that one of the requirements to become a member is to be married. Does anyone know for sure whether marriage was required in order to be a member of the sanhedrin?

I’ve heard that some people think Paul was married (which would have been typical) but that on his conversion he lost his wife and any children. Speculation, of course, but not altogether unbelievable, all things considered.

I’ve never heard he was a member of the Sanhedrin, only that he was a disciple of Gamaliel 1 and so had contact with Sanhedrin information (and was brought in by the Sanhedrin as prosecutor.)

He’d have been awfully young to be a Sanhedrin member, too. But then that Jonathan guy mentioned in Acts (one of the sons of Annas) was really young when he was high priest, so…

(In fact, he only served a couple of years before being deposed or replaced for unknown reasons, which has led to some occasional speculation that he converted to Christianity and became Papias’ “John the Elder” who composed some or all of the NT Johannine material, thus was also the beloved disciple of GosJohn, since Papias describes John as one who has worn the official high priestly garb.)