Monday, February 26, 2007

Jesus' tomb found (allegedly)

We can all admire the Christian church, like other religions, when it's doing its ethical thing: encapsulating all that's best in social solidarity, compassion and altruism. But occasionally the church is thrust back to its magical core and we collectively cringe in embarrassment.

Jesus' tomb has been found, it is claimed, with his bones (and those of his wife and child) inside. So did he die on the cross and was then resurrected three days later? Maybe.

But if his mother was a virgin and his father the holy ghost, what about his DNA? His Y chromosome?

So we see pearls like the following, from the New York Times today (here).

"If DNA research were to link Jesus and “his brother” Yose with Mary, the newspaper noted, it would undermine the concept of the virgin birth."

Glorious isn't it: scriptural exegesis from 2,000 year-old Jewish peasant mythology meets modern genetics (conceptually even if not literally).