Women and the 1st Century Jesus Movement Essay

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There are no known writings that chronicle the life of Jesus or his teachings during his lifetime; rather there is an accumulation of written sources that arose decades after his death (Seat 8/25). Originally, Jesus’ teachings were passed down orally, but eventually, Christians began to write down the oral traditions decades later after his death, specifically after the destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70CE (Seat 8/25). As a result, it is important to note that there is a time discrepancy. Jesus died in 30 CE, but it was not until 70CE that Christians began to write down his teachings; therefore, this time difference has led to different interpretations of his teachings (Seat 9/1). As highlighted by Barbara MacHaffe it is …show more content…
These women “followed him, and ministered to him” in Galilee (NRSV, Mark 15: 40-41). Thurston explains that “’to follow’ is a technical term for discipleship throughout the Gospel” and she also explains that “ministered” is best translated to “provided” or “served” (Thurston 69). Therefore, Jesus’ male disciples followed him and were expected to minister, actions which were also carried out by the women as depicted in the Gospel of Mark (i.e. Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, etc). From this explanation, one can conclude that women in the 1st century Jesus movement assisted Jesus in his mission to spread Christianity.
It is also important to note, that the women in the Gospel of Mark, unlike Jesus’ male disciples, understand Jesus’ significance. For instance, in Mark 14:3-9, an anonymous woman anoints Jesus’ head with an expensive oil, and in response the people at the dinner table criticize her action. In this case, Thurston contends that the anointment foreshadows Jesus’ death and that more importantly the anonymous woman comprehends that Jesus is the “crucified Messiah” (Thurston 75). This demonstrates that women in the 1st century Jesus movement understood who Jesus was, which explains why they displayed unyielding faith. The males on the other hand are
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