Triadic Deity

In ancient mythology, the "triple deity" is a common motif. 
John 19:25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the [wife] of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. (NKJV)
Here, there are three Marys by the cross. Mary, Jesus' mother (Matthew 1:18), her sister "Mary", and Mary magdalene. Although this may seem odd to some, it actually fits the frequent triad pattern. Here, the three are grouped as "Mary", where in Genesis 18 the three men are grouped as "Yahweh" (Genesis 18:1-3). Further, as two of the three men go to Sodom, while the other stays behind in the scene (Genesis 18:21-22; 19:1, 13), two of these three Marys are seen going to the tomb, while the other stays out of the picture. 
Matthew 28:1 Now after the Sabbath, as the first [day] of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. (NKJV)
And additionally, this triad also seems to parallel the Greek Charites (or the Graces), the daughters of Zeus.You can also compare Hecate, a virgin moon goddess understood as "three-formed," often associated with witchcraft.2 The Graces are not only said to be linked to the underworld, but also are seen using oil upon Aphrodite in The Oddysey (Book 8). Yet, "Mary" is associated with the tomb, the dead, and oil in the Gospels. Notice, "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb" (Matthew 28:1; Mark 15:47); Mary Magdalene went to the tomb (John 20:1). In John 11:31, another Mary is "going to the tomb" (of Lazarus). You have all of these Mary "tomb" correlations. As for the oil, see John 11:2; 12:3; Mark 16:1; Luke 23:56; it's interesting, because in witchcraft, you have the utilization of oil for the purpose of magic.3 As can be seen in the Metamorphoses of Apuleius, a witch rubs ointment on her body, and changes into a bird (ch. 16).This is fascinating in light of Mark 16:12, since "He appeared in another form to two of them as they walked and went into the country." Keep in mind, a "Mary" had already anointed him with oil5 before the tomb (John 12:3, 7). Going with the "longer ending" of Mark (16:9-20), this form changing is in the context of after his burial (which ties into oil according to John 12:7).

More than this, in the Old Testament, witchcraft and necromancy (which are the same) are both condemned (see Deuteronomy 18:10-14). What is interesting is that the custom of calling up the dead is exactly what Jesus practiced (John 11:43-44), and you have this connection in the Gospels between "Mary" and the dead. Mary, the sister of Lazarus is in the context of Lazarus' resurrection. The two Marys are seen at the tomb with oils. Really, the Hebrew term for "Mary" מִרְיָם (miryâm) is defined as rebelliously. It is related to the Hebrew word for rebellion (מְרִי) used in 1 Samuel 15:23.
1 Samuel 15:23 For rebellion [is as] the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness [is as] iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He also has rejected you from [being] king. (NKJV)
That is, "rebellion [is] the sin of witchcraft." Thus, "Mary" is a witch. As would be expected in a fiction novel, the name fits the character. For instance, notice Moses' sister Mary (Miriam) is seen as a rebel against Yahweh in Numbers chapter 12; she is even called the prophetess (הַנְּבִיאָה) in Exodus 15:20, which has to do with divination Biblically (e.g. Micah 3:6-7). More than this, these empty tomb stories might have initially read different. For instance, the Marys in Matthew 28:1 may have originally been headed to the tomb in order to conduct a seance, calling Jesus up from the dead (as in 1 Samuel 28). There is clearly evidence of "tampering" in the Gospel texts; John 5:4 is a classic example (the angel in the pool not found in all manuscripts). Were "angels" perhaps added into the tomb stories (Matthew 28:2-5; Luke 24:23; John 20:12)? And what about Mark 16? Passages 9-20 are not in all Greek manuscripts. Has anything else been tampered with in chapter 16 (regarding the tomb)? 

Additionally, John 20 records only Mary Magdalene going to the tomb, and not the other Mary. But this recording of a single Mary may further fit the triadic deity idea, "Mary" (one) being all three, similar to Hecate, the goddess of witchcraft. You can also see the "virgin" parallel between Hecate and Jesus' mother "Mary" (Matthew 1:18, 23-24). There is also the connection between Hecate and Selene, the goddess of the moon. Notice:
Revelation 12:1 Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. (NKJV)
This woman here is identified as the mother of Christ (Revelation 2:27; 12:4-5, 13), and clearly is connected with the moon ("under her feet" cf. Genesis 37:9-10). This comes across as similar to "the queen of heaven" (Jeremiah 7:18; 44:17-19, 25) who also appears to fit a "lunar goddess" (cf. 2 Kings 23:5; Jeremiah 8:2). And as pointed out with Apuleius, his ancient novel describes a witch who turns into a bird and flies away. The woman in Revelation 12:14 "was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place."6

Robert Anthony

____________________________________

Footnotes:

1. Although there is differences. They are also noted as daughters of Apollo, or daughters of Dionysus.

2. The Black Arts, Richard Cavendish, p. 289

3. ibid., p. 290

4. In this tale, the character Lucius is transformed into a donkey. Compare this fiction story to 2 Peter 2:16 ("a dumb donkey speaking with a man’s voice"). Also, notice Numbers 22:28-30, a satanic story (in 22:22 the angel is called "satan" [לְשָׂטָן]) involving a talking donkey.

5. Someone might argue that the oils were simply for covering up the "dead body smell." However, in John 11:39, "Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, 'Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been [dead] four days.'" Did they forget to put it on Lazarus? Also, notice that in John 12:3, Mary anointed Jesus with oil, and He says "she has kept this for the day of My burial" (John 12:7; also see Matthew 26:7-13; Mark 14:3-9). She put it on him while he was still alive. The purpose appears spiritual (as it is in witchcraft). It may have initially been believed that the oil would bring him up from the dead (as in 1 Samuel 28).

6. Ruth 3:9 says: "Take your maidservant under your wing, for you are a close relative." Someone might argue that this "under your wing" is merely a figure of speech, but based on it's usage in 1 Kings 8:6; 2 Chronicles 5:7; Ezekiel 1:8, 23; 10:8, 21, it fits that Boaz had an actual wing in the story (Ruth 3:9). Mythologically, such is not a problem (e.g. Thanatos). Further, Isaiah 40:31 speaks of the people saying: "They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint." The Septuagint has "they shall grow wings" (πτεροφυήσουσιν). Also see Psalm 55:6-7.

No comments:

Post a Comment