Mary Magdalen was said to have been the Bride of Christ. Many of the Gnostic Gospels (revered early on in the Christian Church and later thrown out of the cannon) portray Mary Magdalen as Christ's Most Beloved Disciple, reporting that Jesus often kissed her on the mouth and called her "Woman Who Knows All." Other disciples went to her for Christ's teachings after he died (A). She is portrayed as sitting at Jesus' feet to listen to his teachings (Luke 10:38-42) and also as anointing his feet with oil and drying them with her hair (John 11:2, 12:3). Three of the New Testament Gospels report that Mary Magdalen was at the foot of the cross, and all four Gospels note she was present at the tomb. The Gospel of John notes that after the resurrection, Christ appeared to Mary Magdalen first. Mary Magdalen is mentioned in the New Testament more often by far that Mother Mary.
In The Woman with the Alabaster Jar, Starbird presents a very strong case that Mary Magdalen was perceived by many Christians (up until the 14th or 15th Century) to be the Bride of Christ, who later bore his child. Just as the High Queen Mariamne was known to be a temple priestess, Starbird presents evidence that Mary Magdalen was a princess of Bethany. This Mary of Bethany (sister to Lazarus and Martha) was of the line of Benjamin. She was wedded to Yeshua, of the line of David, in order to fulfill the ancient prophecy that a Son of David would rule Jerusalem and a long period of peace would follow.
Many scholars have documented the fact that Jesus was supported by political zealots who wished to overthrow the Romans and put a Son of David on the throne in Jerusalem. (Numerous Biblical passages also suggest this.) In fact, it is much more likely that Jesus was crucified, not for blasphemy (which was no offense to the Romans), but for sedition. Crucification was the common punishment for insurrectionists, hence the title over his cross, "Jesus Christ, King of the Jews" (B,F *).
If indeed a strong faction of zealots wished to see Yeshua on the throne, he certainly would have been married to a suitable bride. Starbird suggests that the Wedding of Canna, where Jesus turned the water into wine, was actually the symbolic story of his own marriage to Mary of Bethany. "Cana" is the root for "zealot," and the water into wine may represent the new covenant for the people of Jerusalem. (B)
Others believe that Yeshua himself took part in the Sacred Marriage with Mary Magdalen, as the anointing foretold. The Sacred Marriage was a ceremony to renew the land, at times was followed by the death of the redeemer/king who was called upon to sacrifice his blood for the people. (See G) "Mari-Ishtar . . . anointed--or christened--her doomed god when he went into the underworld, whence he would rise again at her bidding. That is, she made him a Christ. Her priestess raised the lament for him when he died. . . . In the Epic of Gilgamesh, victims were told She 'who anointed you with fragrant oil laments for you now' " (D, p. 615).
Anointing the head with oil had Biblical precedent in announcing kingship and was well known to be symbolic of the Sacred Marriage ceremony (B,D *). When Mary anointed Yeshua's head with sacred oil, he foretold his own death: "She has come beforehand to anoint my body for burial. . . . What this woman has done will be told as a memorial to her" (Mark 14:8-9). Immediately afterwards, Judas Iscariot (whose name means "zealot") went out to betray him, for he understood that Jesus was going to sacrifice his life, not rule as king (B).
(A) Pagels, Elaine. The Gnostic Gospels. NY: Random, 1979.
(B) Starbird, Margaret. The Woman with the Alabaster Jar. Santa Fe: Bear & Co., 1993.
(C) Warner, Marina. Alone of All Her Sex: The Myth and Cult of the Virgin Mary. NY: Random, 1976.
(D) Walker, Barbara G. The Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets. Edison, NJ: Castle Books, 1983/1996.
(E) Kinstler, Clysta. The Moon Under Her Feet: The Story of Mari Magdalene in the Service of the Great Mother. SF: Harper, 1989.
(F) Baigent,M., R. Leigh, & H. Lincoln. Holy Blood, Holy Grail. NY: Dell, 1982/1983.
(G) D. Wolkstein, S.N. Kramer. Inanna: Queen of Heaven and Earth. NY: Harper, 1983.
(H) Gadon, Elinor (Ed). The Once and Future Goddess. SF: Harper, 1989.
(I) Lone Jensen. Gifts of Grace. NY: Harper, 1995.