There have been numerous heresies since the time of Jesus of Nazareth, including those contemporaneous to His life on Earth. Pilate, the Roman governor who allowed His crucifixion, agreed to a conspiracy that allowed the Roman guards to claim his body was stolen. That way they wouldn’t have to confront the observable (by scores of witnesses who never denied what they had seen despite pain of death) that He had, indeed, risen.
In the ensuing 2,000 years, there have been denials of His divinity, the most famous being the Gnostic gospels; there have been denials of His existence, despite the record of the historian, Josephus. Again, many witnesses who might have enjoyed a much easier, not to mention longer life, had they simply denied the Christ, testified to what they had seen and heard.
The late Charles Colson wrote about why Watergate proved the resurrection. He said the men around Richard Nixon were men of power, yet they couldn’t hold together a conspiracy for very long.
The disciples of Jesus, on the other hand, had no power. They were persecuted by the occupying Roman authorities, as well as the Jewish leaders of those days (and they, themselves, were Jews). Human nature, wrote Colson, dictates that at least one of them would have cracked. But all went to their deaths, or to exile (the Apostle John) declaring that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God and that He had risen from the dead. They had seen him. Why would they lie?
The “Mrs. Jesus” papyrus will go the way of these other heresies. Isn’t it peculiar that some people so quickly rush to embrace a falsehood while simultaneously rejecting parts, or all, of the historic and inspired record that is contained in what men and women have called “the Bible”? Harvard Divinity School is not my source for Truth. I’m sticking with the “original cast” rather than the road show.
Cal Thomas is America's most widely syndicated op-ed columnist. His latest book is "What Works: Common Sense Solutions for a Stronger America". Readers may email Cal Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.