History of the Church by Eusebius

I am currently in the process of reading the History of the Church by Eusebius. So far it has been extremely interesting and I can’t seem to put it down. However, there are some confusing elements in it. Such as Eusebius constantly talks about James the Righteous being the brother of the Lord, and Jesus writing a letter to a king in Edessa, I believe. He also makes it seem like no one believed St. Peter to be the first Bishop of Rome and claims that Linus was the first.

If anyone could clear some of this stuff up, it would be most helpful. I’m certainly taking what he says with a grain of salt because he was considered by some to be infected with Arianism.

Comments, opinions, etc. are welcome and encouraged.

In Pax Christi

Good for you. A good friend and mentor once said that if every Catholic read Eusebius, there would be a lot more Orthodox…

Although Eusebius says:After the martyrdom of Paul and Peter the first man to be appointed Bishop of Rome was Linus. (Book 3, Chapter 1)

elsewhere he says:Linus, who is mentioned in the Second Epistle to Timothy as being with Paul in Rome, as stated above was the first after Peter to be appointed Bishop of Rome. (Book 3, Chapter 4)

Eusebius says,Next, he [Paul] says, He [Jesus] was seen by James - one of the reputed brothers of the Lord; (Book 1, Chapter 12)

Then there was James, who was known as the brother of the Lord; for he, too, was called Joseph’s son, (Book 2, Chapter 1)

Eusebius, along with most early tradition, such as Protoevangelium of James, regards James as the son of Joseph, Jesus’ foster-father, by a previous marriage, and therefore really our Lord’s step-brother.

I am confused. Which is the correct Tradition? That the brothers referred to in the Bible are step-brothers or cousins?

Sacred Tradition does not have a conclusive answer to that. All it knows for sure is that she never had relations with Joseph. While that would SEEM like a rather strange detail to be passed on orally and not the answer to your very good question…
The Magisterium does not know.

They are both traditions (small t) and neither is necessarily “correct”. Either or neither can be believed by Catholics. The big “T” Tradition that both refer to is that Mary gave birth to no other children than Jesus.

=Corki;2388880]They are both traditions (small t) and neither is necessarily “correct”.

Really? So you know for sure she remained a virgin but you do not know for sure who these men were? If they are not biological brothers, and they are :smiley: , but IF they were not, one has got to be correct and it is a VERY strange thing to not know.

There is no tradition that they are cousins. That is simple the recognition that, in Aramaic and Hebrew of the time, cousins, nephews, step-brothers or even people from the same tribe were often referred to as brothers. There are many instances of this. For example, Lot refers to his nephew Lot as his own brother.

The tradition that has been handed down is that James may have been the son of Joseph from a prior marriage.

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