Recent works like “The Passion of the Christ” and “The Da Vinci Code” seek to illuminate the life of Jesus. Not long ago, an additional text was discovered in an ancient linen backpack found in a cave outside Jerusalem, surrounded by what appeared to be early-Roman candy wrappers and covered with stickers reading “I [heart] All Faiths” and “Ask Me About Hell.” A parchment diary found inside the backpack appears to contain the musings of one Debbie of Galilee. Many of the pages are still being translated from high-school Aramaic; here are some persuasive excerpts:
I saw him in the marketplace! Everyone says that he’s the son of God, but I don’t care one way or the other because he’s just so cute!!! O.K., he’s not hot like a gladiator or a centurion, but he’s really sensitive and you can tell that he thinks about things and then goes, “Be nice to people,” and I’m like, that is so true, and I wonder if he’s seeing anyone!
Everyone says that he’s just totally good and devoted to all humanity and that he was sent to save us and that’s why he doesn’t have time for a girlfriend, although I swear I saw Mary Magdalene doodling in the sand with a stick, writing “Mrs. Jesus Christ” and “Merry Xmas from Mary and Jesus Christ and All the Apostles,” with little holly leaves all around it. And I’m like, Mary, are you dating Jesus? and she says, no, he’s just helping me, and I’m like, you mean with math? and she’s like, not, to not be such a whore. And I said, but that is so incredibly sweet, and we both screamed and talked about whether we like him better when he’s healing the lame or with a ponytail.
I wanted to get him the perfect thing for his birthday, so I asked Matthew and he said, well, myrrh is good, but then John said, oh please, everyone always gives him myrrh, I bet he wishes those wise men had brought scented candles, some imported marmalade, and a nice box of notecards. So I go, O.K., what about accessories, like a new rope belt or clogs or like I could make him a necklace with his name spelled out in little clay letters? and Mark said, I love that, but John rolled his eyes and said, Mark, you are just such an Assyrian. So I go to see Mary, Jesus’ mom, and she said that Jesus doesn’t need gifts, that he just wants all of us to love God and be better people, but I asked, what about a sweater? and she said medium.
Oh my God, oh my God, I couldn’t believe it, but I was right there, and Jesus used only five loaves of bread and two fish to feed thousands of people, and it was so beautiful and miraculous, and my brother Ezekiel said, whoa, Jesus has invented canapés and I said shut up! And then my best friend Rachel asked, I wonder if he could make my hair really shiny, and I said, you are so disgusting, Jesus shouldn’t waste his time on your vanity, and then Jesus smiled at me and I’m telling you, those last seven pounds, the stubborn ones, they were totally gone! And I spoke unto the angry Roman mob and I said, behold these thighs! Jesus has made me feel better about me!
Everyone is just getting so mean. They’re all going, Debbie, he is so not divine, Debbie, you’ll believe anything, Debbie, what about last year when you were worshipping ponchos? And I so don’t trust that Judas Iscariot, who’s always staring at me when I walk to the well and he’s saying, hey, Deb, nice jugs, and I’m like, oh ha ha ha, get some oxen.
So Mary Magdalene tells me that Jesus and all the apostles had this big party and that it got really intense and Jesus drank from this golden goblet and now it’s missing and the restaurant is like, this is why there’s a surcharge.
It’s all over. And it’s been terrible and amazing and I don’t know what any of it means or who’s right and who’s wrong but maybe I’ll figure it out later. Anyway, I’ll always remember what Jesus said to me. He said, Debbie, I can foresee that someday you’ll meet someone, someone wonderful, but for right now let’s at least think about college.