Was Jesus Rude to His Mother in the Bible?
One example they use to assert this is Jesus' response to Mary His mother when she appeals to Him to help the wedding party in Cana. Muslims call Jesus rude and disrespectful of His mother because He calls her "woman."
4 “What has this concern of yours to do with Me, woman?” Jesus asked. “My hour has not yet come.”
But in Matthew 15 we see Jesus using the same term to address a Canaanite woman who pleaded with Him to heal her child:
28 Then Jesus replied to her, “Woman, your faith is great. Let it be done for you as you want.” And from that moment her daughter was cured.
Now here is Jesus defending the woman who had anointed His body for burial:
10 But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a noble thing for Me."
He then prophesies this about her:
13 "I assure you: Wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told in memory of her.”
Now here is the angel Gabriel as he visits Mary, the mother of Jesus, to give her the good news of the Lord's coming:
28 And the angel came to her and said, “Rejoice, favored woman! The Lord is with you.”
Here is Jesus addressing a woman He had healed:
12 When Jesus saw her, He called out to her, “Woman, you are free of your disability.”
Now here is Jesus speaking to the woman caught in adultery whom He had just rescued from the death penalty:
10 When Jesus stood up, He said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
11 “No one, Lord,” she answered.
“Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.”
But most notably, Jesus addresses Mary in the very same way, even as He is laboring to breathe on the cross. In the midst of His agony, He speaks to her and entrusts her into the care of His beloved Apostle John, as He is about to depart this earth:
26 When Jesus saw His mother and the disciple He loved standing there, He said to His mother, “Woman, here is your son.”
27 Then He said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.
As we can see, in 1st century Israel it was neither rude nor disrespectful to call a female person "woman." And this is where the Muslim problem lies. Muslims have trouble understanding that the Bible was written 2,000 years ago, not 2 years ago or 20, and that it comes from a historical context that they are unfamiliar with.
The Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary tells us,
"Woman—no term of disrespect in the language of that day..."
As The Expositor's Greek Testament explains:
"His complete reply is, τί ἐμοὶ καὶ σοί, γύναι; οὔπω ἥκει ἡ ὥρα μου. γύναι is a term of respect, not equivalent to our “woman”. See chap. John 19:26, John 20:13, Luke 13:12. In the Greek tragedians it is constantly used in addressing queens and persons of distinction. Augustus addresses Cleopatra as γύναι (Dio, quoted by Wetstein)."
"Calling her 'woman...' was no mark of disrespect; it being an usual way of speaking with the Jews, when they showed the greatest respect to the person spoken to; and was used by our Lord when he addressed his mother with the greatest tenderness, and strongest affection, John 19:26."
Will you pray with us that the Lord will enlighten them?