Re: Vatican

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Thu Nov 10 2005 - 08:47:16 EST

Neither the Nag Hammadi texts nor Jewish concepts of the Messiah carry much weight for anything approximating orthodox Christian theology. There are good reasons why the church did not include the former in the canon - primarily because of the gnostic ideas which they convey. & it's clear that the sense in which Jesus is the Messiah is very different from the predominant popular Jewish messianic concept at the time, the leader who would throw out the Romans and establish Jewish domination.

Luke 2:21, if nothing else, shows that Jesus was biologically male.

Having said that, 2 further points should be made.

1) The human nature assumed by the Logos was anhypostatic - "not personal" is a literal translation but one misleading to modern ears. It does not mean that Jesus "had no personality" in the modern sense but that his personal centering is in the divine hypostasis of the Logos. This means, among other things, that the human nature assumed in the Incarnation includes everything essential for, and proper to, all humans, male and female. (If this were not the case then woman could not be saved through the Incarnation, in accord with the principle "What has not been assumed has not been healed.) & this is why - if one follows out its implications - claims that woman can't be ordained because they can't represent Christ collapse.

2) One objection to belief in the virginal conception of Jesus has been that parthenogenesis of a human being would have to result in a female. (Where would the Y chromosome come from?) In a 1983 article in PSCF (at that time JASA) titled "A proposed Biological Interpretation of the Virgin Birth," available at, Edward Kessel suggested a mechanism by which a certain genetic mechanism could have been combined with parthenogenesis to result in a human being whose genotype was female but whose phenotype was male. (This is probably a clumsy way of stating his thesis - I haven't read the article for a long time.)

  ----- Original Message -----
  To: ;
  Sent: Thursday, November 10, 2005 7:44 AM
  Subject: Re: Vatican

  In a message dated 11/9/2005 11:50:06 PM Eastern Standard Time, writes:
    So I guess your answer to both of my questions is "no, we cannot agree".

    And my questions were completely serious.

    So please clarify if I'm misunderstanding - you don't believe Jesus was a man, but rather both a man and woman - ??

    Regarding the quoted Jewish scholars - the entire NT states very clearly that many Jewish scholars at the time had gotten many things wrong about what the coming Messiah would be like. What makes you so sure that these particular one's have it right?

  No, the idea is that Jesus was complete in himself and had no desire. I suggest that this is why his celibacy was assumed, from both the Nag Hammadi and Jewish conception of the messiah. Not at any time was Jesus both man and woman as in a hemaphrodite, nor did I say anything about his masculinity, a secondary sexual characteristic.
  Nag Hammadi AND Jewish scholars. It is absolutely clear from the Nag Hammadi texts which explicitly state you must be male and female to enter the kingdom. Jesus said to her: "I am He who exists from the undivided."
  gospel of thomas 61
  It is Adam who was divided into male and female. Before that he was undivided.

  The ontology of the self sacrifice and one of its principal characteristics, the end of desire, is present in the theology of the Rig Veda, Buddhism, Jewish mysticism, and Gnosticism. For the ontology of the self sacrifice NOT to include the self's "end of desire" and to have "skipped over" Christianity while being expressed in Jesus' celibacy is highly unlikely. In fact, since the Jews expected a redeemer who would throw off the yoke of their enemies and Jesus was a spiritual redeemer, then it is even more likely he reflected this aspect of ontology that is manifest in all the great religions. I would appreciate a quote from the NT supporting your argument.

Received on Thu Nov 10 08:49:20 2005

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