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"And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established forever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever." — 2 Samuel 7:16
Latter-day Saints have no problem accepting the idea that Jesus was married, piloted as they are by continuing revelation. If Heavenly Father is married, then why not Heavenly Son? Given our theology, it all makes logical sense, even if it has not congealed into official doctrine.
The concept of the Savior having sexual coitus with his wife is difficult for Latter-day Saints and impossible for other Christians to accept. Christian philosopher Justin Martyr in the mid-second century promoted an abstinent and continent Savior. He reckoned that since Jesus was even holier than the Virgin Mary, who did not have sexual relations, then certainly He did not either. This Neoplatonic ethic of a virgin Jesus, as the paradigm of virtue, became the axiomatic position of the primitive Church as it descended into apostasy.
Because of this “tradition of the fathers,” some Latter-day Saints think that Jesus had a celibate marriage, as a number of prominent early Christian fathers practiced. About 15 percent of the LDS people interviewed by the author on the subject objected to Christ having progeny. Whatever kind of marriage He had, in their minds, it neither did, nor could, produce children. Still, the notion that Jesus and his wives had progeny, who would be of His royal lineage, is intriguing to the Mormon mind.
A number of Mormons struggle with the concept of Christ’s immortality passing on to the next generation. Because Christ is half-immortal, the skeptics conclude, his children would either remain half or a quarter divine, with “special powers.” One former BYU religion professor, Dr. Richard Lloyd Anderson, sees this as “all wrong,” for it “couldn’t or wouldn’t happen.” Dr. Anderson believes it beneath the dignity of Christ to sexually beget children. He objects to Jesus as a semi-immortal mating with a mortal.
The famous biological scientist, Dr. James Jensen of Brigham Young University, sees it theologically, if not genetically, impossible that Christ had children.10 Non-LDS professor Paul L. Maier sees only problems with the idea: “But one of the principal purposes of marriage is to have children and an enormous—even cosmic—problem would have arisen if Jesus and the Magdalene had produced offspring. Theologians would have argued for centuries as to whether such children did or did not participate in Jesus’ divinity. And what of their children and grandchildren in turn? It would have caused no less than theological bedlam. That Christ remained parsimoniously celibate was very wise indeed!”
Since a celibate Christ was easier for the theologians, the historical fact of a sacred marriage was, because Okam’s Razor required it, necessarily scuttled. Following this line of reasoning, one might then also question that Heavenly Father as a fully immortal being could not conceive through the mortal Virgin Mary, a half-immortal child. Of course, contrary to the Jews’ objection, Mary of Nazareth did in fact conceive a child from Heavenly Father. Is it to the very uniqueness of these children that people object? Did it make them too much like the Savior or the Savior too much like them?
Was there a physiological purpose behind the distinctive genetic inheritance of these children? Christ had to be able to live under the direst of circumstances in order to complete the atonement on earth. So did His children have to live long enough to fulfill their mission, that is, pass on their lineage. Any special powers they might have possessed ensured their health and well being long enough to rear future generations.
They were not sickly but rather robust to resist disease and exposure in an age when the mortality rate for children was extremely high. Christ’s offspring, then, had the physical wherewithal to live and be fruitful.
This theory might be true, for Doctrine and Covenants 113:4 says that upon “them” (a descendant of Jesse and Joseph) “there is laid much power.” This “much power” was not of a magical but of a genetic kind. Like Christ’s own power, it enabled His children to live under adverse conditions. This may have been the special purpose in the powers bestowed on these Grail children, especially in the first three generations—three because legend has it that Joseph of Arimathea had three successors or generations to hide the Grail ‘children’. At the third generation the children would only be 1/16th immortal which means they would be 15/16th mortal and hardly less susceptible to death than the rest of us. Of course this also allowed the lineage to spread out broadly enough and to sink deep enough to ensure the sacred bloodline’s continued existence.
** The following was taken from Dynasty of the Holy Grail. The opinions and views expressed herein belong solely to Vern Swanson and do not necessarily represent the opinions or views of Cedar Fort, Inc.