The Masculinity of Jesus Part 4 (Marriage at Cana)

Edit: Chad has written his interpretation of this passage here with slightly alternative views. 

Edit 2: I’ve done some extensive thinking on this topic and I actually believe Chad’s version is closer to correct now. I will leave this up as the lessons this post teaches are still applicable even though my analysis of the Scripture may be slightly off.

http://depthstowilderness.com/marys-request-and-leadership-of-christ/


The marriage at Cana is the first miracle of Jesus per the testimony of John, and another interaction between Jesus and his mother.

If we remember back to Jesus in the temple, this is his interaction between his mother, Mary, and himself:

Mary: “[s]Son, why have You treated us this way? Behold, Your father and I [t]have been anxiously looking for You.
Jesus: “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s [u]house?”

Instead of getting sucked into his mother’s opinion of what He was doing, Jesus reframes the issue into one of what God wanted him to be doing. This is one example of where answering a question with a question allows Jesus to redirect the conversation towards spiritual things rather than earthly things. Away from his mother’s concerns, and towards the Father’s concerns.

However, even in this situation, Jesus submits to his parents — His earthly authorities — so as to be in full obedience to the law of Moses and to His Father in heaven.

Now, let’s move on to the marriage at Cana in John 2 (NASB)

On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there; 2 and both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus *said to Him, “They have no wine.” 4 And Jesus *said to her, “Woman, [a]what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother *said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.” 6 Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing [b]twenty or thirty gallons each. 7 Jesus *said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” So they filled them up to the brim. 8 And He *said to them, “Draw some out now and take it to the [c]headwaiter.” So they took it to him. 9 When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter *called the bridegroom, 10 and *said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have [d]drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now.” 11 This beginning of His [e]signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him. 12 After this He went down to Capernaum, He and His mother and His brothers and His disciples; and they stayed there a few days.

The first concept we see in this passage at the wedding is that there is a problem. What does Mary do when they find out there’s a problem?

3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus *said to Him, “They have no wine.”

She indirectly asks Jesus to fix the problem.

Now, I don’t know if she asked politely with good manners, but telling a man about a problem which implies that He fix the problem tends to be disrespectful in most cultures. However, I won’t say that it was sinful or disrespectfully because I don’t know, and I don’t want to call good evil or evil good.

Thus, Jesus replies curtly:

4 And Jesus *said to her, “Woman, [a]what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.”

Jesus addresses other women by the term “woman” in the gospels, and this was not uncommon in the culture. However, it seems that most commentaries agree that it would be disrespectful for a man to address his mother as such.[1]

[1]Analysis from Wiki — Mary told Jesus the wine was in short supply. Today his reply may seem curt: “Woman, what have I to do with you? My hour is not yet come.”[Jn. 2:4] Neither here nor elsewhere does Jesus renounce the mother-son relationship as such, but here, as in Luke 2:49, he declares his vocational (ministerial) independence of his mother.

He has an “hour” to meet, and Mary, though his mother, can neither hasten nor hinder its coming.[4]:pp.103–104, 236 Most scholars believe that in Jesus’ reply to his mother there was no disrespect. According to Matthew Henry’s Commentary, he used the same word when speaking to Mary with affection from the cross.[15] Scholar Lyn M. Bechtel disagrees with this reading. She writes that the use of the word “woman” in reference to Jesus’ mother is “startling. Although it would not be improper or disrespectful to address an ordinary woman in this way (as he often does: see John 4:21, 8:10, 20:13-15), it is inappropriate to call his mother ‘woman'” (Bechtel 1997, p. 249). Bechtel further argues that this is a device Jesus uses to distance himself from Judaism.

However, Bishop William Temple says there is no English phrase that represents the original “Woman, leave me to myself.” “In the Greek it is perfectly respectful and can even be tender—as in John 19:27…. We have no corresponding term; ‘lady’ is precious, and ‘madam’ is formal. So we must translate simply and let the context give the tone.”[16] Some versions of the Bible translate it as “Dear woman”. [17]

The commentaries, unfortunately, do not look at Jesus’ actions in light of male-female relationships or even mention Mary’s prior comment which prompted the curt reply from Jesus.

The curt reply of Jesus was to address Mary’s incomplete picture of the situation at hand.

Looking in the context of male-female relationships and conversation this could have two different meanings:

“Woman, [a]what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.”

  1. An exasperated Jesus replying as to a child that was testing his patience, “Come on, what does that have to do with us?” or “Why are you telling me to fix someone else’s problem?”
  2. An amused Jesus replying perhaps with a raised eyebrow, “So what? What does that have to do with us?”

When Jesus was at the temple, Mary was concerned about Him but Jesus redirected the attention off of her worry onto the fact that He had to go about His Father’s business. It was an excellent redirection of the situation with another question, yet He still obeyed His parents and returned with them.

In this case, whether Jesus was exasperated or amused or something else, He was still in control of the situation by responding to Mary’s assertion with another question. The type of reply Jesus made addresses Mary’s incomplete picture of the entire situation which was twofold: (1) taking an issue that wasn’t their problem and potentially making it their problem, and (2) not thinking about the consequences of said actions.

In other words, Jesus redirected Mary’s statement from concern over the present into Spiritual matters again. Otherwise He would have just said “Okay mother, I’ll turn some water into wine”.

Likewise, this is a great lesson for husbands, as wives and women often bring problems up to husbands to fix. This is neither good or bad in itself, but sometimes the problems focus merely on the physical and ignore the spiritual. Or they didn’t consider the consequences of said actions.

However, after Jesus redirected Mary’s statement from earthly things to heavenly things, He does acquiesce and perform a miracle:

5 His mother *said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.” 6 Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing [b]twenty or thirty gallons each. 7 Jesus *said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” So they filled them up to the brim. 8 And He *said to them, “Draw some out now and take it to the [c]headwaiter.” So they took it to him. 9 When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter *called the bridegroom, 10 and *said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have [d]drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now.” 11 This beginning of His [e]signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him. 12 After this He went down to Capernaum, He and His mother and His brothers and His disciples; and they stayed there a few days.

edit: Thanks to Chad for pointing it out some of the corrections above, and prayer about changing parts of this post were Spirit inspired.

Conclusions

The key point in this passage is Jesus’ immaculate concern of the Spiritual over the physical. He doesn’t fall into the trap of pleasing those at the marriage or women, even his mother, but rather addresses her concern over a problem by curtly telling her the long term implications of such actions. We should be reminded to focus on spiritual as opposed to earthly things, and that all actions have consequences.

In terms of male-female relationships, winnowing out intentions is important as well as consideration of the Spiritual over the physical. These are both characteristics of masculinity in interacting with women: to reveal the intentions or truth behind women requests and to evaluate them in light of the Spirit and consequences that may result.

Mark 4:21 And He was saying to them, “A lamp is not brought to be put under a [e]basket, is it, or under a bed? Is it not brought to be put on the lampstand? 22 For nothing is hidden, except to be revealed; nor has anything been secret, but that it would come to light. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”

Luke 8:16 “Now no one after lighting a lamp covers it over with a container, or puts it under a bed; but he puts it on a lampstand, so that those who come in may see the light. 17 For nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light. 18 So take care how you listen; for whoever has, to him more shall be given; and whoever does not have, even what he [e]thinks he has shall be taken away from him.”

Likewise, one of the other lessons men can learn from this is that women, even your mother, are going to demand or tell men do things all the time to fix their problems or to fix someone else’s problem. Mary was essentially volunteered Jesus’ time and energy to fix a problem that was not His problem.

As you may recall, this is the same concept behind which I wrote Christian nice guys are abused [for their time].

Husbands and men should call out women for volunteering or telling them to do things. These are things that should be discussed by the husband before a decision is made. A wife volunteering time without asking her husband is not respectful behavior.

Key point for wives/women: Ask politely, don’t tell men to do things. Don’t abuse men to do things for you.

Key point for husbands/men: If women don’t respect you and your time then call them out on it. It may be good to do the things that wives/women are bringing up to you as Jesus acquiesced and performed a miracle, but you must ensure that women are respectful of your boundaries as men by calling them out on disrespectful behavior.

Key point for all: Focus not just on the physical or earthly things but the Spiritual ramifications of actions. Indeed, consider both the action and the consequences of said action in light of the Spirit and not the flesh.

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31 Responses to The Masculinity of Jesus Part 4 (Marriage at Cana)

  1. padre98 says:

    Another interesting take away is the scholars are using a “don’t show a hint of disrespect towards women” line of thought.

    My take is, Mary was not behaving like his mother, she was more interested in keeping the party going, which is why Jesus said “woman” not “mother”. She was moving outside of her role and he called her on it.

    Still made the wine though, which is a lesson in itself.

  2. God still works his Power, when asked, even when we aren’t worthy of it. There’s also a good lesson in “God isn’t a Wishlist”, a way in which too many Christians treat the Lord.

    And mothers definitely do like to give away your time, which is why it’s important to make sure they “ask” you for it, not command, after you’ve gotten older. It also makes the relationship with a mother a lot easier when you have firmly established boundaries.

  3. @ Padre

    Yep, it looks like they don’t even understand the context of the situation and just see Jesus saying something perceived as “mean.” Because the feelings of women are more important than anything else.

  4. It’s probably important to remember that, by the time of Cana, Jesus was the head of the family, as Joseph was dead. That actually made him King of Israel via the line of David.

    Who orders a King around?

  5. padre98 says:

    LookingGlass makes a great point, Christians are a bit jaded over “name it, claim it” however if one looks at this passage from that pov, Mary demanded of Jesus, he was not happy with such a demand, yet fulfilled it b/c of his nature.

    Real question is, did he do so b/c his Mother dunned him, or did he do so b/c the situation demanded it

  6. Chad says:

    You’re dangerously reducing the interaction to a ‘game’ standpoint instead of a theological one.

    Jesus’s response was complex not because of the request of Mary, but of what it meant. It is the start of Jesus’s public ministry, and thus the first step towards the cross.

    Mary does not know this when she makes the request the first time. She asks in ignorance of what it means for him to do as she asks – which is to depart from living with her, from living as a man unknown to the world during his mysterious life within the home, and start that public ministry. To start his persecution by those that John says were his own, but did not receive him.

    Thus, his curt reply. He informed her of the depth of consequences for her ‘simple’ request by reminding her of what his destiny was of the cross.

    And she, through her actions, agreed that those consequences were alright with her. That she would live with what he choses. She didnt command him to do it anyways; she commanded servants to listen to him. She reinforced him as an authority and trusted him.

    You’re jumping to the male/female interactions here too quickly, and missing the depth of rhe situation which informed their choices.

  7. Looking Glass says:

    All narrative interactions in the Bible start with the Physical, then bridge into the Theological. Western Christianity has spent much of the last 200 years being far too impractical on Theology anyway.

    Further, the point is to see what “Christ-like” interactions are. This a pretty good one. He’s dealing with his mother, Mary, would go on to be the most well-known Woman in history. And he checked an attempt to make him a busybody for others. That wasn’t his point for being here. But, she had Faith in his Power and the servants showed faith as well. (There’s a really important point about Faith being the actor by which the Power of the Spirit is expressed. See: Roman Centurion & Syro-Phoenican Woman)

    There’s also the fun question: did Jesus perform Miracles in the home on a regular basis? I always love that implication behind the wedding at Cana story.

  8. @ Chad

    I think you’re also correct. That’s the one good thing about the Scriptures. There’s many things to be learned from the passages.

    In terms of Jesus/Mary it is the start of acceptance (and therefore responsibility) of His ministry and so that is an important point to note.

    Though I do disagree with your point about commanding him. Mary told Jesus with a certain expectation that He would do something about it. Women often don’t tell you anything unless they have the expectation of doing something. That’s one of the major issues in the headship/submission aspect of marriage, and also the authority/submission aspect of parents/children.

    Point taken though.

  9. padre98 says:

    Hmm, disagree w/Chad, think the danger arises when attempting to twist Scriptures to fit a point. For example for centuries the “we have two swords, that is enough” was used to say the RCC is one “sword” the Crown the other “sword” and all manner of perversions of Christ’s words were foisted upon citizens.

    DS is merely highlighting Christ’s words and teachings vis a vis interpersonal relationships which is one of the major themes of Jesus’s earthly ministry

  10. @ Chad

    Busy day for me.

    Ending up editing in some other points near the end of the passage which are useful in terms of overall masculinity.

  11. Chad says:

    @ Padre
    “think the danger arises when attempting to twist Scriptures to fit a point.”

    If you have an agenda of analyzing scripture based on the interactions of men and women, and specifically start writing about such things before you even examine the scripture, how does this not fit into what you’re discussing?

    If you’re trying to analyze how men and women should interact from scripture, first you have to determine what the scripture itself -means- and then you draw conclusions on what it means to human behavior. If you have a conclusion of what you think human behavior should be, and then find scripture verses to match, you’re doing exactly what you say should be avoided, only you’re doing it by selection bias of holy text rather than looking at the whole picture.

    My disagreements with DS’s analysis are minor, I know. Yet they’re there. What’s more, is I’m legitimately concerned because he’s approaching scripture with a conclusion in mind. He states above,

    “She directly asks Jesus to fix the problem.”

    And she did no such thing. What she did was state a fact, which may or may not be interpreted as an indirect way of asking Jesus to fix the problem, but certainly is not direct. Yet I would venture a guess that this misapplication of direct vs indirect is because he went into the text looking for specific outcomes; namely “How did Jesus hold frame?” so he looks for frame that must be held. In doing so he makes that first assumption, but his post is also assuming that her commanding the servants is a shit test to Jesus, when it need not be any such thing. As I pointed out, it could legitimately be her supporting Jesus’s authority as head of house after the death of Joseph because she does not ever command him to do a miracle, does not command the servants to do anything special, but merely tells them to follow his leadership, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

    If a mother said that to children in accordance to listening to their father, we would call that remarkably in line with head of household. If a pastor said that to women, we would call that head of household. DS has made no case at all as to why that would not be the case for Mary in this passage. Instead, he comes to the conclusion:

    “Women, even your mother, are going to demand that men do things all the time to fix their problems or to fix someone else’s problem. Mary essentially volunteered Jesus’ time and energy to fix a problem that was not His problem.”

    This is a conclusion that, as far as I can see, he has not made. Not at all. In fact, all he’s done is subscribe to the modern game definition of how women must be against men. That they must shit test. That men must hold frame at all times. He has found no depth to this passage in which Mary might have held any of the values of the Old Testament commandments to women as feminine, of value, of wives, of mothers. There’s a great deal of scriptural evidence that Mary, as the mother of God, understood a great many of those things:

    “And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them,. But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart.” – Luke 2:17-20

    “And he said to them, ‘How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?’ And they did not understand they sayings which he spoke to them. And he went down with them ad came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart.” – Luke 2:29-51

    He subscribes no layers to the conversation, because he’s completely disregarding the situation, hasn’t considered the state of Mary’s own holiness, and hasn’t considered the lessons she learned that we are directly told of (in addition to those in the 30 years we weren’t). What’s more, is that we’re SPECIFICALLY TOLD that Mary went above and beyond what most men or women would do. As such, we must take that into account of any scriptural verses regarding her.

    I think he needs to sort through those first, and then re-approach the situation he he would like to achieve the greatest amount of clarity regarding this passage.

  12. @ Chad

    1. I agree with you here:
    “She directly asks Jesus to fix the problem.”

    So I’ll change it to:
    “She indirectly asks Jesus to fix the problem.”

    2. I disagree with the rest of your argument though. I think you’re attributing too much credit to Mary here.

    The Scripture says specifically that when the wedding ran out of wine and they wanted (hustereō) more, Mary told Jesus about it.

    G5302 — ὑστερέω — hustereō — hoos-ter-eh’-o
    From G5306; to be later, that is, (by implication) to be inferior; genitively to fall short (be deficient): – come behind (short), be destitute, fall, lack, suffer need, (be in) want, be the worse.

    Basically, they ran out of wine and need/wanted more.

    Why exactly would Mary tell Jesus this unless she knew He could do something about it?

    I would argue that she did know He could do something about it as her reply to the servants in context to His answer to her statement shows that she knew: “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

    This tells me that Mary comes to Jesus and tells Him about the wine, and that by His reply we can tell that she expects Him to do something about it. Whether it is done respectfully or not I don’t know, but the context of the situation tells me that it’s probably not given the social commentary which I included which notes that Jesus’ reply is curt.

    However, let me suspend that reasoning for a second.

    If the Mary’s assertion to Jesus was performed in a respectful manner, it’s still a woman commenting to a man in expectation to do something about a problem. This is something that needs to be replied to in a careful manner by the man/husband because as seen by the OT Patriarchs that either that doing something that a woman wants/expects often leads to sin. Like I said in the above article, I highly doubt that He would’ve chosen to say nothing in this context. This is why Jesus’ reply is curt to remind her of the consequences of the actions.

  13. Chad says:

    @ DS
    “I disagree with the rest of your argument though. I think you’re attributing too much credit to Mary here.”

    That’s fine. I’m enjoying the discussion. My main thing is that I think you originally glossed over some of what was going on because you were looking at the interaction through the wrong lens.

    In fact, I absolutely agree with you that Mary had an expectation of Jesus to do something to amend the situation. I fully believe that she knew she was requesting such. However, as stated, I think she did so indirectly and without fully knowing the consequences.

    This interpretation is born out by Jesus’s reply; which is not a yes or no, but a curt explanation of what the consequences of her request are. He is all powerful, and knows what is in her heart. Thus why he does give some reproach, but that the reproach is underwritten with the fact that she does not know that of what she speaks.

    In response, she corrects herself and submits to his will. She acts as a First Mate and submits to what he wills. Yes, she does not withdraw her request, but she does refrain from a demand of Christ.

    Christ thus responds by doing God’s will and his own; by performing a miracle.

    Thus I see the whole interaction that is loaded with great lessons. On Mary showing what not to do; which is make initial demands (especially in an indirect manner which most men find rude and resent) when they know not any of that on which they request.

    The second, as you pointed out, is Christ wonderfully and lovingly reproving her – not the request in itself but in her lack of knowledge on it meaning it will begin his public ministry and long walk towards the Cross. That it will take him away from the world and give her to the arms of those that will reject and kill him.

    The third is that, when faced with such information, Mary does not dishonestly take away her request, nor demand it of him, but submits.

    I find the whole passage beautiful.

  14. @ Chad

    At a fundamental this may also be an overall disagreement over whether Mary was with or without sin (for her entire life) in terms of how the Catholic Church views her as opposed to Protestants.

    I take it that we may not agree in the end on this issue, even though I think my argument has a lot of logical merit.

    However, if you want to write rebuttal on what you believe is happening at the marriage at Cana I will link it if you post it on your site or post it below my argument in the original OP.

    I believe that people would be interested in hearing both sides on a controversial topic.

  15. Chad says:

    “At a fundamental this may also be an overall disagreement over whether Mary was with or without sin (for her entire life) in terms of how the Catholic Church views her as opposed to Protestants.”

    Most likely, this is the case.

    All of my thoughts have already been stated on this particular instance; any further posting would be crafting the multiple comments together into a post instead of spread over multiple comments.

    If you’re interested in posting that as a guest post, I’d be open to that. I’m unsure if it would fit on my blog at this juncture, though I could be wrong.

  16. @ Chad

    I understand that.

    Perhaps the thing that is most troubling to me in the context of masculinity is that we know that Jesus is going to respond perfectly and does, but we know that most modern husbands and men (that are feminized) are going to respond correctly to something like this either respectfully or disrespectully.

    I should be more clear in my wording that we don’t know whether Mary was being disrespectful or not, but I think my overall conclusion stands at the end in terms of lesson(s) to husbands/men in either case.

    Also, if you want to do a write up I’ll add it to the end of this post, unless you want it as a separate guest post which I would accomodate as well.

  17. @ Chad

    OK, I prayed about it and re-edited a lot of this article to match what I prayed about.

    I don’t want to insinuate Mary disrespected Jesus or not because I don’t know. And I don’t want to unknowingly call good evil and evil good. That would not be good.

    Thanks for the critique on this.

    If you still want to write a rebuttal post after rereading let me know.

  18. Chad says:

    I’ve got a post started, we’ll see if I have time to finish it. I just moved into a new apartment on Saturday so my free time is limited

  19. ray says:

    He put her in her place, publically and calmly, as a lesson to those there then, and here now.

    Note that the servants obeyed, and looked to, her. The Lord of Hosts is in the same room, and yet . . . a mere mortal woman is in charge.

    Christ was irritated bc she presumed so readily, so blithely, on His grace and divinity. Oh look, hm, there’s the Son of God yonder. Hey, yo! Can we get some vino over here, bro!?

    lol

    Seriously, Mary wasn’t being rude, or pushy, but Jeshua was well-known by this time, and she was presuming, and social-status posturing, albeit mildly. So he reminded her that he is the Son of our Father, the Creator of Heaven and Earth . . . not of her.

    To her credit, she took his meaning quick, obeyed, reaffirmed the proper hierarchical order, and Jeshua, typically generous, rewarded them with gladness.

  20. Pingback: Mary’s Request and Leadership of Christ at Cana | From the Depths To the Wilderness

  21. Chad says:

    Post is up. If you want to see a discussion of it between our readerships, you’ll probably need to link it in a new post announcing it – I don’t think we have a great deal of cross over in our readership

  22. @ Chad

    Read through it. Good arguments.

    I’ll include a link in my own post now.

  23. Chad says:

    Sounds good.

    I’ll acknowledge that I agree with most of what you say of how to act; simply that I believe the lesson here is different than what you found. I think that lesson is found elsewhere.

    Which kind of amazes me, that despite the differences I do think we’re both being led towards wisdom.

  24. @ Chad

    The convergence of actions really shouldn’t be so surprising considering the fact that the Scriptures are consistent on what is good and what is not. Faith is actions.

    Though as you noted, perspective on different passages can differ.

  25. mdavid says:

    You should read early Church fathers on this; disciples of John and bishops of the early church were writing about this passage many years ago; the “Woman” was referring to Gen 3:15 (same Greek word in the LXX). And used again at the cross; Mary his mother is never referred to with her name, merely the title Woman. Jesus is addressing Mary as the New Eve, who was called Woman by Adam. Of course Jesus is the new Adam.

  26. mdavid says:

    John starts Jesus’ ministry at the wedding, since Eve “divorced” Adam by sinning against his command (God told Adam, Adam told Eve, God addresses Adam first for Eve’s sin, and only then Eve). The first marriage was Eve’s rib out of Adam (one flesh) and that marriage was broken with sin. Jesus returns marriage to it’s true state at the wedding, and Eve is reborn in Christ.

  27. infowarrior1 says:

    @mdavid
    “Jesus is addressing Mary as the New Eve, who was called Woman by Adam. Of course Jesus is the new Adam.”

    Jesus did not only use “Woman” with Mary:

    Luke 13:10-13
    “10 Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. 11 And there was a woman who had had a spirit of infirmity for eighteen years; she was bent over and could not fully straighten herself. 12 And when Jesus saw her, he called her and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your infirmity.” 13 And he laid his hands upon her, and immediately she was made straight, and she praised God. ”

    John 8:1-1
    8 1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2 Early in the morning he came again to the temple; all the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. 3 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst 4 they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. 5 Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such. What do you say about her?” 6 This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 7 And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 And once more he bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 9 But when they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the eldest, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. 10 Jesus looked up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and do not sin again.”[a]

    Its his ordinary title when dealing with women in general and has nothing to do with the 2nd eve.

  28. infowarrior1 says:

    @Deep Strength

    There is no action without faith and no faith without action:
    The Semitic Totality Concept

    Behind much of the thought in the Bible lies a “peculiarly Semitic” idea of a “unitive notion of human personality.” [Dahl, Resurrection of the Body, 59] This notion combined aspects of the human person that we, in modern times, often speak of as separate entities: Nausea is thought of as a condition of the soul and not the stomach (Num. 21:5); companionship is said to be refreshing to the bowels (Philemon 7); and the fear of God is health to the navel (Prov. 3:8).

    This line of thinking can be traced through the Old Testament and into the New Testament (in particular, the concept of the “body of Christ”) and rabbinic literature.

    Applied to the individual, the Semitic Totality Concept means that “a man’s thoughts form one totality, with their results in action, so that ‘thoughts’ that result in no action are ‘vain’.” [ibid, 60] To put it another way, man does not have a body; man is a body, and what we regard as constituent elements of spirit and body were looked upon by the Hebrews as a fundamental unity. Man was not made from dust, but is dust that has, “by the in-breathing of God, acquired the characteristics of self-conscious being.”

    Thus, Paul regards being an un-bodied spirit as a form of nakedness (2 Cor. 5). Man is not whole without a body. A man is a totality which embraces “all that a man is and ever shall be.”

    Applied to the role of works following faith, this means that there can be no decision without corresponding action, for the total person will inevitably reflect a choice that is made. Thought and action are so linked under the Semitic Totality paradigm that Clark warns us [An Approach to the Theology of the Sacraments, 10]:

    The Hebraic view of man as an animated body and its refusal to make any clear-cut division into soul and body militates against the making of so radical a distinction between material and spiritual, ceremonial and ethical effects.
    Thus, what we would consider separate actions of conversion, confession and obedience in the form of works would be considered by the Hebrews to be an act in totality. “Both the act and the meaning of the act mattered — the two formed for the first Christians an indivisible unity.” [Flemington, New Testament Doctrine of Baptism, 111]

    Source:http://www.tektonics.org/af/baptismneed.php

  29. @ mdavid

    Thanks for some of the background information!

  30. @ info

    Thanks for more background information.

    I’m glad there’s the Semetic totality concept because it’s often difficult to explain the intertwining of faith and works.

  31. Looking Glass says:

    It’s also an anti-Platonic idea, which caused no end to troubles in the early church. It would eventually end up in the first major Church split with the Oriental Orthodox post Council of Chalcedon.

    Or, when in doubt, just blame Origen, as he seems to be the origination point of most Theological stupidity that has stuck around for the past 1800 years.

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