Monday, April 7, 2008

Genealogies of Biblical Proportions

There's a fun article in the Tampa Tribune on a Genealogy of Biblical Proportions. The article is about a genealogy discovered on Ancestry (in their Family Trees section)

If ever there was a tangled web, this was it. I got lost just looking at one line of it, but sure enough, it did go back to what someone has entered as "Joseph, father of Jesus" and "Mary the Virgin." This genealogy showed only one child of that union: Joseph Arimathea. Jesus was not mentioned, but perhaps the compiler of this lineage thought that went without saying.

This compiler did give a date of birth for Joseph as the year 100 in Bethlehem. The date alone makes the relationship questionable: How could Jesus have a brother born 100 years after he was? I am not a scholar of the Bible, but this was the first time I had seen Joseph Arimathea linked as the son of Joseph and Mary, although some have speculated that he might have been related to Jesus. According to medieval legend, Joseph took the Holy Grail containing the blood of Jesus to England.

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