Book: Mary of Nazareth by Marek Halter

My first and probably only book review. lol:D

Well, for some strange reason I bought this book today. It’s fictional, of course, based around some lost writings supposely written by Miriam of Nazareth. Let me tell you about the writings that appear in the back of the book.

First of all, the good things:
-They confirm that Mary was the daughter of Anne and Joachim

  • Joseph was indeed older and had seven children prior to becoming Mary’s husband
    -By all accounts Mary remained a virgin her entire life
    -They present Mary as an independent, well educated, heroic woman
    -Jesus is not married to Mary Magdelene for once

However:
-Mary is said to be in love with Barabbas

  • John the Baptist speaks against Jesus, and tells Mary that Jesus should be baptised
    -The wedding at Cana is presented in a more objectable light, and afterwards Mary feels she sinned by insisting Jesus perform a miracle
    -A lot of it is insisting that Jesus perform miricles in order to get the crowds to belive him
    -No mention of Jesus giving Mary to John on the cross
    -The big one: Jesus doesn’t die on the cross, he is taken down and healed before death, Mary plays a big role in keeping her son alive.

The book, which is set in the days before Jesus’s birth, use these writings as the basis behind the story. Mary is trying to free her father, who is to be crucified by the Romans. Mary Magdelene is her best friend, Joseph is her protecter/husband, but Barabbas is the one she loves. Joseph of Arimetha is also a good friend of hers.

Overall: Besides the fact it’s based on a heretical text (which sounds like it came from the Koran), it’s an alright book for the fiction that it is. It’s refreshing to see Mary portrayed as she is, more in the Catholic/Muslim light then the Protestant, but I wish it was more in line with Church teaching.

Overall rating: 5.5 (Would have given it a 6 if Jesus had actually died on the cross in the writings)

Suggestions: Muslims would enjoy it more then Catholics, because it’s more in line with their teachings then ours, but for those of you interested, take it out at the liberary first.:wink:

Well, in regards to the Wedding at Cana - Mary certainly did ponder everything in her heart that happened to her. And remember she and Joseph didn’t understand what Jesus meant in the Temple when He said ‘I must be about my father’s business?’

Being human, her knowledge wasn’t perfect, and she may well have wondered at times whether she was doing or had done the right thing, even if only for a moment. And I imagine after Jesus having told her that his hour had not yet come at Cana, if she was going to wonder about anything that’d probably be near the top of the list.

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