. . (but) the question again arises as to 'how things really were'" (8). Is it possible to adequately investigate the seeming detachment from society; would the itinerant nature of Jesus' ministry permit a large following of those who were "without a fixed abode, without possessions, dependent upon alms and provisions" (Heine, 1987, 8).
Kraemer (1992) maintains that when Celsus criticized Christianity in the second century C.E., characterizing it as appealing to "the foolish, dishonourable and stupid, and only slaves, women and little children," there was established "a connection between women and early Christianity that has only recently received serious and critical attention" (128). Maloney (1984) presents an analysis of the Gospels which tends to demonstrate that "It is remarkable just how much material there is . . . of how Jesus related to women" (8). He describes five distinct groupings of Scripture: 1. Women as the main protagonists in miracle stories; 2. Two passages in which women characters are used in a polemical situation; 3. A series of exclusively Matthean parables; 4. The anointing of Jesus at Bethany; and, 5. The presence of women at the cross, the burial, and the empty tomb (8-9).
As Kraemer (1992) asserts, the absence of "an accurate demographic survey of any early Christian community" makes it impossible to determine whether there were more men or women involved in the early church. Kraemer continues:
subsequent Christian debates about women's roles and authority distort not only the broad portrait of women in the early movement around Jesus, but the specific details as well. Feminist scholarship has demonstrated irrefutably that women constituted a significant presence in the Jesus movement, despite all the attempts by both ancient writers and subsequent transmitters and translators to obscure that presence. Yet the exact nature of women's involvement in the movement is debatable (1...
Faith is for Everyone. (2000, January 01). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 07:19, October 31, 2014, from http://www.collegetermpapers.com/viewpaper/1303513981.html