Seth Udinski, FISM News
In a fascinating historical discovery of biblical evidence, archeologists in Israel have uncovered a synagogue believed to be 2,000 years old in the town of Migdal. Based on the evidence of the New Testament, this is the hometown of Mary Magdalene, one of the most famous female followers of Jesus Christ.
Sources indicate that this is the second synagogue discovered from this period in the town of Migdal. Archeologists estimate this synagogue was constructed during the second temple age of Jerusalem, which occurred between the late 6th century B.C. and the destruction of the temple by the Romans in 70 AD.
One of the archaeologists on site said after the discovery:
We can imagine Mary Magdalene and her family coming to the synagogue here, along with other residents of Migdal, to participate in religious and communal events.
This discovery only enhances the credibility of the gospel accounts, providing a piece of physical evidence to the home of one of Jesus’ most faithful followers. The New Testament gives us substantial information about Mary of Migdal, a character who has drawn controversy in the Church. It should be noted that nowhere in scripture do we see any evidence that Mary had any kind of romantic relationship with Jesus or that she was an unrepentant prostitute, as some authors and historians have argued. The Smithsonian Magazine, for example, said in its coverage of the discovery:
Over the centuries, theologians, historians and Christians have floated many theories about Mary Magdalene, including that she was an unrepentant prostitute and that she was married to Jesus.
To know the truth about this fascinating believer, we must draw our conclusions from what the scriptures clearly tell us.
Luke 8 tells us that Jesus rescued Mary from demon possession when he drove seven demons out of her, and several gospel accounts of the Resurrection reveal that she was the first eyewitness of the risen Lord. John 20 reveals that Mary, on the morning of the third day after Jesus’ crucifixion, went to the tomb where he was buried and found it empty.
Thinking that someone had stolen his body, she was distraught. The risen Lord Jesus then approached her, but she did not recognize Him until He said her name. Overjoyed, she told the other disciples, and Jesus validated her testimony by appearing to them in a locked room later that day.