Questions About Jesus


Was Mary Magdalene and Mary of Bethany the same person? Also I know that they were not married. But would it actually have made any different if Jesus was married to either Mary of Magdalene or Mary of Bethany?

—J, World


Dear J,

Most Bible scholars agree that Mary Magdalene and Mary, sister of Martha and Lazarus, of Bethany were two different women. They were both close disciples of Jesus.

If you are asking if Jesus’s spiritual greatness would have been lessened by being married, the answer is no. Marriage simply was not a part of what God asked him to do in that particular lifetime, and doing the “…will of my Father in Heaven,” was obviously all-important to Jesus.

Marriage, in and of itself, need not be detrimental to one’s spiritual progress. Many self-realized Masters have been married. Among the great Avatars of our path, Lahiri Mahasaya and Sri Yukteswar were married and had children. Sri Yukteswar later became a Swami (monk), after his wife died.