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  #1  
Old Mar 25, '11, 3:57 pm
peeteyg peeteyg is offline
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Default Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

I have been wrestling with this issue lately. I think it is important because it is esential in determining the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. I do NOT think that Mary had any other children other than Jesus. Others say differently, I want to know what Scripture, Tradition and Apostolic record show. Is it a translational issue from Greek to Latin to English on Brother Sister issue ? If it was why is Elizabeth specifically named as her Cousin if language did not support this. I really need help from experts here. Thanks
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Old Mar 25, '11, 4:10 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
I have been wrestling with this issue lately. I think it is important because it is esential in determining the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. I do NOT think that Mary had any other children other than Jesus. Others say differently, I want to know what Scripture, Tradition and Apostolic record show. Is it a translational issue from Greek to Latin to English on Brother Sister issue ? If it was why is Elizabeth specifically named as her Cousin if language did not support this. I really need help from experts here. Thanks
Start here:

Articles on Perpetual Virginity
"Brethren of the Lord"
http://www.catholic.com/library/bret...f_the_lord.asp

Mary: Ever Virgin
A Biblical Basis For Mary's Perpetual Virginity?
http://singinginthereign.blogspot.co...perpetual.html

How to Explain the Perpetual Virginity of Mary
By Jason Evert
http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/2000/0007sbs.asp

Was Jesus an Only Child?
By Father Mateo
http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/1990/9001fea2.asp
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Old Mar 25, '11, 4:28 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
I have been wrestling with this issue lately. I think it is important because it is esential in determining the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. I do NOT think that Mary had any other children other than Jesus. Others say differently, I want to know what Scripture, Tradition and Apostolic record show. Is it a translational issue from Greek to Latin to English on Brother Sister issue ? If it was why is Elizabeth specifically named as her Cousin if language did not support this. I really need help from experts here. Thanks
Absolutely not! The notion Mary had other children evolved years after and especially among some Protestants.
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Old Mar 25, '11, 4:32 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
I have been wrestling with this issue lately. I think it is important because it is esential in determining the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. I do NOT think that Mary had any other children other than Jesus. Others say differently, I want to know what Scripture, Tradition and Apostolic record show. Is it a translational issue from Greek to Latin to English on Brother Sister issue ? If it was why is Elizabeth specifically named as her Cousin if language did not support this. I really need help from experts here. Thanks
Early Protestants on the Perpetual Virginity of Mary


Martin Luther (1483-1546)

“Christ, our Savior, was the real and natural fruit of Mary's virginal womb…This was without the cooperation of a man, and she remained a virgin after that.”

“Christ…was the only Son of Mary, and the Virgin Mary bore no children besides Him…I am inclined to agree with those who declare that 'brothers' really mean 'cousins' here, for Holy Writ and the Jews always call cousins brothers.”

“A new lie about me is being circulated. I am supposed to have preached and written that Mary, the mother of God, was not a virgin either before or after the birth of Christ…Scripture does not say or indicate that she later lost her virginity.”

“Scripture does not say or indicate that she later lost her virginity…When Matthew says that Joseph did not know Mary carnally until she had brought forth her son, it does not follow that he knew her subsequently; on the contrary, it means that he never did know her…This babble…is without justification…he has neither noticed nor paid any attention to either Scripture or the common idiom.”

John Calvin (1509-1564)

Helvidius displayed excessive ignorance in concluding that Mary must have had many sons, because Christ's 'brothers' are sometimes mentioned. {Harmony of Matthew, Mark & Luke, sec. 39 (Geneva, 1562), vol. 2 / From Calvin's Commentaries, tr. William Pringle, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1949, p.215; on Matthew 13:55}

[On Matt 1:25:] The inference he [Helvidius] drew from it was, that Mary remained a virgin no longer than till her first birth, and that afterwards she had other children by her husband . . . No just and well-grounded inference can be drawn from these words . . . as to what took place after the birth of Christ. He is called 'first-born'; but it is for the sole purpose of informing us that he was born of a virgin . . . What took place afterwards the historian does not inform us . . . No man will obstinately keep up the argument, except from an extreme fondness for disputation. {Pringle, ibid., vol. I, p. 107}

Under the word 'brethren' the Hebrews include all cousins and other relations, whatever may be the degree of affinity.
{Pringle, ibid., vol. I, p. 283 / Commentary on John, (7:3) }

Huldreich Zwingli (1484-1531)

He turns, in September 1522, to a lyrical defense of the perpetual virginity of the mother of Christ . . . To deny that Mary remained 'inviolata' before, during and after the birth of her Son, was to doubt the omnipotence of God . . . and it was right and profitable to repeat the angelic greeting - not prayer - 'Hail Mary' . . . God esteemed Mary above all creatures, including the saints and angels - it was her purity, innocence and invincible faith that mankind must follow. Prayer, however, must be . . . to God alone . . .
'Fidei expositio,' the last pamphlet from his pen . . . There is a special insistence upon the perpetual virginity of Mary.
{G. R. Potter, Zwingli, London: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1976, pp.88-9,395 / The Perpetual Virginity of Mary . . ., Sep. 17, 1522}

Zwingli had printed in 1524 a sermon on 'Mary, ever virgin, mother of God.'
{Thurian, ibid., p.76}

I have never thought, still less taught, or declared publicly, anything concerning the subject of the ever Virgin Mary, Mother of our salvation, which could be considered dishonourable, impious, unworthy or evil . . . I believe with all my heart according to the word of holy gospel that this pure virgin bore for us the Son of God and that she remained, in the birth and after it, a pure and unsullied virgin, for eternity.{Thurian, ibid., p.76 / same sermon}

Heinrich Bullinger (1504-1575)

“The Virgin Mary…completely sanctified by the grace and blood of her only Son and abundantly endowed by the gift of the Holy Spirit and preferred to all…now lives happily with Christ in heaven and is called and remains ever-Virgin and Mother of God.”

John Wesley (1703-1791)

“I believe...he [Jesus Christ] was born of the blessed Virgin, who, as well after as shebrought him forth, continued a pure and unspotted virgin.”
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  #5  
Old Mar 25, '11, 4:37 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

NO!
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Old Mar 25, '11, 5:07 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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NO!
Ditto.
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Old Mar 25, '11, 5:32 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

At the Annunciation, the solemnity of which we observe today, Mary declared herself to be the handmaiden/servant/bond slave of the Lord (Luke 1:38). A handmaiden/servant/bond slave serves one master, not two. Mary could not, by her own self-dedication to God, serve Him in the raising of His Son, as well as her own interests in the raising of any family she might desire. Mary was with Jesus from Annunciation to Ascension, and we know from the wedding feast at Cana (John 2:1-8) that Jesus was still subject to her at age 30 (Luke 3:23) - thus, she was still the Lord's handmaiden/servant/bond slave.

We know that Jesus had what are translated as "brothers" and "sisters". But, search the term "brother" or "sister" in a bible search engine, and you will find numerous uses of those terms: to indicate siblings, cousins, nephews, neighbors from the same town, followers, disciples, etc. Look at Acts 1:15
Quote:
(New American Standard Bible) At this time Peter stood up in the midst of the brethren (a gathering of about one hundred and twenty persons was there together), and said,
Whose "brothers" were they? Which mother had 120 children? The use of the term "brother" is highly contextual, and must be viewed within the context in which it was offered.

Specifically, the bible nowhere declares that Mary had other children, and none is mentioned.
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Old Mar 25, '11, 5:43 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
I have been wrestling with this issue lately. I think it is important because it is esential in determining the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. I do NOT think that Mary had any other children other than Jesus. Others say differently, I want to know what Scripture, Tradition and Apostolic record.
See Scripture Catholic for numerous quotes from Scripture and the early Church. And do note that these quotes do not include all the times the Fathers referred to Mary simply as "the Virgin". And you should read St. Jerome's classic The Perpetual Virginity of Blessed Mary. The tradition for the perpetual virginity of the Blessed Virgin Mary is overwhelming.

Quote:
Is it a translational issue from Greek to Latin to English on Brother Sister issue ? If it was why is Elizabeth specifically named as her Cousin if language did not support this.
This is probably because St. Elizabeth lived in a different town, while the "brothers and sisters" of Our Lord probably all lived in Nazareth. Relatives would often live in the same village, and often times next door to each other, and sometimes they had adjoining houses or rooms. Just remember:

The LORD said to me, “This gate is to remain shut. It must not be opened; no one may enter through it. It is to remain shut because the LORD, the God of Israel, has entered through it." (Ezekiel 44:2)
God bless.
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  #9  
Old Mar 26, '11, 7:27 am
peeteyg peeteyg is offline
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

What do the Eastern Orthodox think on this subject ? What faith tradition actually believes that jesus has brothers and sisters? Why did the church decalre the Perpetual Virginity of Mary? Are there anyone out there that believes that Jesus did in fact have brothers and sisters and this is a stumbling block to joining the church because of the Dogma proclaiming the Perpetual Virginity of Mary ? I am only asking questions, I firmly believe that she was a Perpetual Virgin myself.
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Old Mar 26, '11, 7:52 am
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
What do the Eastern Orthodox think on this subject ? What faith tradition actually believes that jesus has brothers and sisters? Why did the church decalre the Perpetual Virginity of Mary? Are there anyone out there that believes that Jesus did in fact have brothers and sisters and this is a stumbling block to joining the church because of the Dogma proclaiming the Perpetual Virginity of Mary ? I am only asking questions, I firmly believe that she was a Perpetual Virgin myself.
The Orthodox have the same belief. The belief to the contrary arose among later Protestants; you can see from the earlier post the the "founding fathers' of Protestantism maintained this belief even in their break from the Church. I'm sure there are bigger stumbling blocks for Protestants considering Catholicism, Marian devotion as a whole being one of them. Denying her perpetual virginity, however, displays a diminished understanding of the Incarnation.
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Old Mar 26, '11, 8:08 am
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

It depends. If you truly believe the Bible, then yes, she did have other children. (Luke 14:12 - "And he said to him also that had invited him: When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, nor thy kinsmen, nor thy neighbours who are rich; lest perhaps they also invite thee again, and a recompense be made to thee." (DR emphasis mine). Notice Jesus makes a distinction between brothers and kinsmen (relatives in some translations). Matt 13:55-56 - "Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary, and his brethren James, and Joseph, and Simon, and Jude: And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence therefore hath he all these things?" (DR emphasis mine). Here the same word for brother is used as in Luke 14:12. While "brother" may not always mean a sibling brother (as in the case of Abraham and Lot), it seems to me that the Scriptures make it clear, either by context or explanation (such as telling us clearly that Lot was the son of Abrams brother, therefore we know Abraham was Lot's uncle, not his sibling brother). We do not find this clear explanation in Scripture for the brothers and sisters of Jesus)

On the other hand, if you truly believe what the catholic church tells you to believe about the Bible, then no, she had no other children and was a perpetual virgin.

What it comes down to is this - you have to decide if you're going to believe what the catholic church tells you to believe about the Bible or what the Bible clearly says. Whatever your decision is, it is not an infallible decision.
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Old Mar 26, '11, 8:19 am
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

Thanks Cachonga, that is the opposing viewpoint I was looking for. I would say a casual reader of the bible would believe that jesus did have brothers and sisters. My view is that it is a translational issue from greek to latin to english. This is why i am interested in what a Latin speaker or Greek Speaker says on this issue. I do know what the church teaches on this . I respectfully disagree but welcome your views and information.
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Old Mar 26, '11, 12:40 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

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Originally Posted by peeteyg View Post
Thanks Cachonga, that is the opposing viewpoint I was looking for. I would say a casual reader of the bible would believe that jesus did have brothers and sisters. My view is that it is a translational issue from greek to latin to english. This is why i am interested in what a Latin speaker or Greek Speaker says on this issue. I do know what the church teaches on this . I respectfully disagree but welcome your views and information.
Cachonga has been corrected on this matter before, and his snarky comment about believing the Bible or what the Catholic Church says about the Bible reveals a complete misunderstanding about the nature of Christ's Church which cannot teach error. Further, it is his "personal interpretation" apart from the sure guidance of that Church that has led him astray. But I digress.

The passage he cites as "proof" of his position is easily addressed as follows:

Brothers of Jesus, Not Sons of Mary

Many non-Catholics deny the Perpetual Virginity of Mary by referring to passages of scripture that mention the “brothers” of Jesus. A rigorous analysis of scripture, however, proves their position is false. Consider the following:

1. Jesus had a “brother” named James.

"Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?”(Matthew 13:55)

2. James, the Lord's “brother”, is an apostle.

“Then, after three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas, and remained with him fifteen days. But I saw none of the other apostles except James, the Lord's brother. (Galatians 1:18-19)

3. There are two apostles named James.

“When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.”(Luke 6:13-16)

4. One James (the brother of John) is not the uterine brother of Jesus; his father is Zebedee.

James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means Sons of Thunder)” (Mark 3:17)

5. The other apostle named James is not the uterine brother of Jesus; his father is Alpheus.

“And when it was day, he called his disciples, and chose from them twelve, whom he called apostles: Simon, whom he named Peter and Andrew his brother, and James and John and Philip and Bartholomew, and Matthew and James the son of Alpheus, and Simon who was called the Zealot, and Judas the son of James and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.” (Luke 6:13-16)

6. Therefore, neither apostle named James was a uterine brother of Jesus.

7. The man named Joseph (or Joses) is not the uterine brother of Jesus; his mother is Mary and his brother is James. Therefore, this Mary is the wife of Alphaeus.

“Many women were there, watching from a distance. They had followed Jesus from Galilee to care for his needs. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee's sons.” (Matthew 27:55-56)

8. Judas is not a uterine brother of Jesus because he is the son of James.

“When they arrived, they went upstairs to the room where they were staying. Those present were Peter, John, James and Andrew; Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew; James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James.” (Acts 1:13)

9. While Matthew 15:35 declares James, Joseph and Judas to be the “brothers” of Jesus, it has been demonstrated from scripture that they are NOT uterine brothers of the Lord. From this, it is apparent that scripture must be using the term “brothers” to mean relatives other than sons of Mary.
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  #14  
Old Mar 26, '11, 12:44 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachonga View Post
On the other hand, if you truly believe what the catholic church tells you to believe about the Bible, then no, she had no other children and was a perpetual virgin. What it comes down to is this - you have to decide if you're going to believe what the catholic church tells you to believe about the Bible or what the Bible clearly says. Whatever your decision is, it is not an infallible decision.
How does a "bond slave" of the Lord serve two masters? (Luke 1:38) How could Mary serve both God and mammon? (Matthew 6:24, Luke 16:13) Why would she want to, since she consecrated herself to the Lord at the Annunciation? Why then did she look only amongst her kinfolk, and not among "her children" when seeking Jesus? (Luke 2:44) She did have two sons, however: Jesus, then John (John 19:26-27).

Last edited by po18guy; Mar 26, '11 at 12:56 pm.
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Old Mar 26, '11, 12:46 pm
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Default Re: Did Jesus have Brothers and Sisters?

Explaining the “Brothers” of Jesus

Because neither Hebrew nor Aramaic (the language spoken by Christ and his disciples) had a special word meaning "cousin," speakers of those languages could use either the word for "brother" or a circumlocution, such as "the son of my uncle." But circumlocutions are clumsy, so the Jews often used "brother."

The writers of the New Testament were brought up using the Aramaic equivalent of "brothers" to mean both cousins and sons of the same father—plus other relatives and even non-relatives. When they wrote in Greek, they did the same thing the translators of the Septuagint did. (The Septuagint was the Greek version of the Hebrew Bible; it was translated by Hellenistic Jews a century or two before Christ’s birth and was the version of the Bible from which most of the Old Testament quotations found in the New Testament are taken.)

In the Septuagint the Hebrew word that includes both brothers and cousins was translated as adelphos, which in Greek usually has the narrow meaning that the English "brother" has. Unlike Hebrew or Aramaic, Greek has a separate word for cousin, anepsios, but the translators of the Septuagint used adelphos, even for true cousins.

You might say they transliterated instead of translated, importing the Jewish idiom into the Greek Bible. They took an exact equivalent of the Hebrew word for "brother" and did not use adelphos in one place (for sons of the same parents), and anepsios in another (for cousins). This same usage was employed by the writers of the New Testament and passed into English translations of the Bible. To determine what "brethren" or "brother" or "sister" means in any one verse, we have to look at the context. When we do that, we see that insuperable problems arise if we assume that Mary had children other than Jesus.
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