James, who is he?


#1

I have a question that is really bothering me. In Luke 24:10, it says “The women were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James”. I thought Mary did not have any other children? Who is this James? Is it James who wrote James in the Bible? Its been stated that there are 3 James mentioned in the Bible. I am confused!


#2

That is Mary the wife of Cleopas, not the Blessed Mother. I believe the two were sister-in-laws. The Blessed Mother did not go to the tomb on Easter morning. It is believed by the Eastern Rites that the risen Lord appeared to the Blessed Mother first on Easter Morning.


#3

[quote=CatMan]Who is this James? Is it James who wrote James in the Bible? Its been stated that there are 3 James mentioned in the Bible. I am confused!
[/quote]

This is James the less I think.


#4

I have a Protestant Study Bible because when I started to doubt the Church I wanted a Bible without the Catholic bias ;). This version assures me that the Book of James was written by Jesus’ brother James. There are also many study notes in the Bible which talk of Mary and Joseph’s other children. However the Church says that Mary remained a virgin all her life. This Church compiled the Scriptures (with some extra ones my Bible doesn’t have :o ) and so if it thought this Scripture contradicted its own teachings it would not have been approved as the Word of God and would have been discarded. Therefore either the Mary in the instance is not the Mother of Jesus, or there is a misinterpretation of her being another child’s mother. Unfortunately I do not have the answers to this, but there are more knowledgeable people than I here who will happily help.


#5

There are three James’ mentioned in the New Testament.

James the Greater and James the Less, both of whom were Apostles, and James, the Brother of Jesus (referred to by Eusebius as James the Just).

James the Just was the leader of the first “Christian” community at Jerusalem composed of Jesus’ original disciples.

Jerome, I believe, tried to argue that James the Just was really James the Less, but Acts of the Apostles seems to contradict this view.:wink:

LittleLes


#6

[size=2]The Catholic Church has held from apostolic times the perpetual virginity of Mary to be believed by all who wish to remain members of the Church.

Hundreds of pages were written on the virginity of Mary in the first centuries and a man named Papis in the year 120 AD refutes the error of interpretation that is often made with Matthew 13. He goes on to show that they were children of other Mary’s. If we look at Matthew 27:56 it says that there was present two other Mary‘s, the mother of James and Joseph and Mary the mother of the sons of Zebedee named James and John. (Matthew 4:21) Then in Mark 15:40-41 we find another Mary the mother of James, Joseph and Salome, the one called His sister. Then in John 19:25 we find mentioned Mary the mother of Jesus-The Blessed Virgin and Mary of Cleophas who is the mother of Simon and Jude. St. Jerome was not wrong. John 19:25 indicates that Mary the wife of Zebedee, the mother of James and John is the Blessed Virgins sister, which would make John and James the cousins of Jesus. The Early Christian writers explain what the first Christians understood as the meaning of the Sacred Scriptures. In Mk 3:331-35, Jesus clearly say’s”…For whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.” I don’t think he’s talking about blood relations.

The Helvidius and Jovinian heresies of the 5th century are simply restated today! Pope St. Siricius, in a letter to the Bishop of Thessalonica in 392said , “For if they accept the doctrine… that Mary had a number of children,…” The Lateran council of 649 declared her perpetual virginity again. In 1555, Pope Paul IV restated this and also the council of Trent. Vatican II also uses the title “Ever virgin”

The encyclical letter of Pope Pius X on the doctrine of modernists clearly warns us of these protestant scholars and their attempt to confuse and cloud Church teachings. A solemn declaration of the First Vatican Council say’s “The doctrine of the faith which God has revealed has not been proposed to human intelligence to be perfected by them as if it were a philosophical system, but as Divine Deposit entrusted to the (Church) to be faithfully guarded and infallibly interpreted.”

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#7

As I understand things, there’s no specific word for ‘cousin’ in Hebrew or in Aramaic so the word for ‘brother’ is often used. The James and Joses mentioned in Mark 6:3 were the sons of Mary, the wife of Clopas (Matthew 27:56). In John 19:25, we find that Mary of Clopas was the Blessed Mother’s sister, that means she was Jesus’ aunt and her sons were Jesus’ cousins. I hope this helps in some way.


#8

Sorry Brother Rich SFO,

The “perpetual virginity” of Mary is a teaching that began in the fourth century. If you disagree, please cite a writing earlier than this which claims the perpetual virginity of Mary. Not the ante partum virginal conception, not the in partu virgin birth, but the post partum perpetual virginity of Mary.:wink:

LittleLes


#9

[quote=FightingFat]As I understand things, there’s no specific word for ‘cousin’ in Hebrew or in Aramaic so the word for ‘brother’ is often used. The James and Joses mentioned in Mark 6:3 were the sons of Mary, the wife of Clopas (Matthew 27:56). In John 19:25, we find that Mary of Clopas was the Blessed Mother’s sister, that means she was Jesus’ aunt and her sons were Jesus’ cousins. I hope this helps in some way.
[/quote]

Hi Fighting Fat,

There may be no one word in Aramic or Hebrew for “cousin” but there is a phrase.

However, this is beside the point since all the Gospels, Epistles, Acts of the Apostles (and even the writings of the contemporary Jewish historian, Josephus) were all written in koine Greek, and not in Hebrew or Aramaic, and koine Greek has a very specific words for brother, sister, and cousin.

In referring to the brothers of Jesus the specific Greek word for brother, “adelphos,” is used.

The “brothers” into “cousins” ploy was originated by Jerome in the fourth century to support his argument about the perpetual virginity of Mary.

LittleLes


#10

[quote=LittleLes]Hi Fighting Fat,

There may be no one word in Aramic or Hebrew for “cousin” but there is a phrase.

However, this is beside the point since all the Gospels, Epistles, Acts of the Apostles (and even the writings of the contemporary Jewish historian, Josephus) were all written in koine Greek, and not in Hebrew or Aramaic, and koine Greek has a very specific words for brother, sister, and cousin.

In referring to the brothers of Jesus the specific Greek word for brother, “adelphos,” is used.

The “brothers” into “cousins” ploy was originated by Jerome in the fourth century to support his argument about the perpetual virginity of Mary.

LittleLes
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Given your explanation, would that rule out stepbrothers?


#11

[quote=LittleLes]Hi Fighting Fat,

There may be no one word in Aramic or Hebrew for “cousin” but there is a phrase.
[/quote]

Perhaps, but why would one use the cicumlocution “the son of my father’s brother” when “brother” is a perfectly acceptable alternative?

[quote=LittleLes]However, this is beside the point since all the Gospels, Epistles, Acts of the Apostles (and even the writings of the contemporary Jewish historian, Josephus) were all written in koine Greek, and not in Hebrew or Aramaic, and koine Greek has a very specific words for brother, sister, and cousin.

In referring to the brothers of Jesus the specific Greek word for brother, “adelphos,” is used.
[/quote]

Then perhaps you could explain why the word “adelphos” is used in the Septuagint translation of Gen 14:14:

(LXX)ἀκούσας δὲ Αβραμ ὅτι ᾐχμαλώτευται Λωτ ὁ ἀδελφὸς αὐτοῦ, ἠρίθμησεν τοὺς ἰδίους οἰκογενεῖς αὐτοῦ, τριακοσίους δέκα καὶ ὀκτώ, καὶ κατεδίωξεν ὀπίσω αὐτῶν ἕως Δαν. [size=2][/size]

[size=2][/size]
[size=2]Obviously, the translators were aware of Lot and Abraham’s true relationship, and the Greek had the proper word, so why use “adelphos”? Perhaps they were staying true to the use of the word in the original language. Patristic evidence also suggests that Matthew’s Gospel was originally written in Hebrew or Aramaic, so the same could be said there as well. Fact is, the weight of evidence does not support your assertion.
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[quote=LittleLes]The “brothers” into “cousins” ploy was originated by Jerome in the fourth century to support his argument about the perpetual virginity of Mary.

LittleLes
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Your argument falls short again, as the argument from silence is extremely unconvincing. It is well known that the Church has never been in the practice of defining issues unless there is a specific threat to a traditionally held belief. Fact is, no one questioned the perpetual virginity of Mary until Helvidius (unless you can prove otherwise), therefore the Church had no reason to defend the belief. It is no wonder then, that we start to see writings defending Mary’s perpetual virginity during Jerome’s time, as a response to Helvidius’ writings.

Les, I hope for your sake that you have been playing devil’s advocate on this thread (and also recently on the thread concerning infallibility). It is one thing to take a position for the sake of argument. It is quite another to believe in the positions that you have been posting. If the latter is the case, then in all Chrisitan charity I have to point out that you are guilty of obstinately denying truths as declared by the Church. As a result you have excommunicated yourself *latae sententiae, *and are no longer in communion with the Catholic Church. If you are not willing to repent of your views, then I would ask you to update your profile to reflect your status lest you scandalize others on this forum, or even lead them astray.

Thank you.


#12

[quote=Genesis315]Given your explanation, would that rule out stepbrothers?
[/quote]

Hi Genesis315,

I’m told that the koine Greek word “adelphos” literally means from the same womb. Still, if used more generally, I know of nothing strictly speaking which would preclude a stepbrother from being termed an adelphos too.

The “stepbrother” of Jesus story comes from that old Protoevangelium of James, the one that has a dove flying out of Joseph’s staff, a mountain swallowing up Elizabeth and John the Baptist to protect them from Herod, and the story of Ann turning Mary over to the Temple at age three, child abondonment by any reasonable standards.

Jerome wrote that Joseph too was a perpetual virgin since he would not be a fit husband for Mary unless he was. Hence the lilly in his hands.

Still, if there were other brothers, the term firstborn son, with firstborn son’s rights wouldn’t apply to Jesus.

LittleLes


#13

[quote=LittleLes]Sorry Brother Rich SFO,

The “perpetual virginity” of Mary is a teaching that began in the fourth century. If you disagree, please cite a writing earlier than this which claims the perpetual virginity of Mary. Not the ante partum virginal conception, not the in partu virgin birth, but the post partum perpetual virginity of Mary.:wink:

LittleLes
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From the Catholic Answers tract Mary. Ever Virgin:

Most Protestants claim that Mary bore children other than Jesus. To support their claim, these Protestants refer to the biblical passages which mention the “brethren of the Lord.” As explained in the Catholic Answers tract Brethren of the Lord, neither the Gospel accounts nor the early Christians attest to the notion that Mary bore other children besides Jesus. The faithful knew, through the witness of Scripture and Tradition, that Jesus was Mary’s only child and that she remained a lifelong virgin.

An important historical document which supports the teaching of Mary’s perpetual virginity is the Protoevangelium of James, which was written probably less than sixty years after the conclusion of Mary’s earthly life (around A.D. 120), when memories of her life were still vivid in the minds of many.

According to the world-renowned patristics scholar, Johannes Quasten: “The principal aim of the whole writing [Protoevangelium of James] is to prove the perpetual and inviolate virginity of Mary before, in, and after the birth of Christ” (Patrology, 1:120–1).

To begin with, the Protoevangelium records that when Mary’s birth was prophesied, her mother, St. Anne, vowed that she would devote the child to the service of the Lord, as Samuel had been by his mother (1 Sam. 1:11). Mary would thus serve the Lord at the Temple, as women had for centuries (1 Sam. 2:22), and as Anna the prophetess did at the time of Jesus’ birth (Luke 2:36–37). A life of continual, devoted service to the Lord at the Temple meant that Mary would not be able to live the ordinary life of a child-rearing mother. Rather, she was vowed to a life of perpetual virginity.

However, due to considerations of ceremonial cleanliness, it was eventually necessary for Mary, a consecrated “virgin of the Lord,” to have a guardian or protector who would respect her vow of virginity. Thus, according to the Protoevangelium, Joseph, an elderly widower who already had children, was chosen to be her spouse. (This would also explain why Joseph was apparently dead by the time of Jesus’ adult ministry, since he does not appear during it in the gospels, and since Mary is entrusted to John, rather than to her husband Joseph, at the crucifixion).

According to the Protoevangelium, Joseph was required to regard Mary’s vow of virginity with the utmost respect. The gravity of his responsibility as the guardian of a virgin was indicated by the fact that, when she was discovered to be with child, he had to answer to the Temple authorities, who thought him guilty of defiling a virgin of the Lord. Mary was also accused of having forsaken the Lord by breaking her vow. Keeping this in mind, it is an incredible insult to the Blessed Virgin to say that she broke her vow by bearing children other than her Lord and God, who was conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit.

The perpetual virginity of Mary has always been reconciled with the biblical references to Christ’s brethren through a proper understanding of the meaning of the term “brethren.” The understanding that the brethren of the Lord were Jesus’ stepbrothers (children of Joseph) rather than half-brothers (children of Mary) was the most common one until the time of Jerome (fourth century). It was Jerome who introduced the possibility that Christ’s brethren were actually his cousins, since in Jewish idiom cousins were also referred to as “brethren.” The Catholic Church allows the faithful to hold either view, since both are compatible with the reality of Mary’s perpetual virginity.

Today most Protestants are unaware of these early beliefs regarding Mary’s virginity and the proper interpretation of “the brethren of the Lord.” And yet, the Protestant Reformers themselves—Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Ulrich Zwingli—honored the perpetual virginity of Mary and recognized it as the teaching of the Bible, as have other, more modern Protestants.

Entire article can be found at catholic.com/library/Mary_Ever_Virgin.asp


#14

Firstborn son is a jewish term that would apply to any son who was the first boy born from a woman. It wouldn’t matter if the boy was an only child or the brother of older sisters. I am quoting from the Junior Judaica that my husband got for our children.

first born is the term referring to a male offspring who is the first issue of his mother’s womb. According to the Torah, the fistborn, known in Hebrew as bekhor, has special sanctity. Therefore, he is subject to specific Torah laws which apply to all first born human beings and animals of the following types: cattle, sheep, goats and donkeys. The purpose of these laws is to teach us that everything in the world belongs to God and man owns ony what God has given to him…The ceremony of the redemption of the first born is of great significance. In the case of a human bekhor the ceremony is held on the 31st day after the child’s birth and is known as pidyon ha-ben. The ceremony consists of redeeming the child from a priest by giving him five silver coins.”

Notice that the ceremony takes place only 31 days after the child’s birth. No one is waiting to see if the mother has more children before they call the child first born.


#15

QUOTE=deb1]Firstborn son is a jewish term that would apply to any son who was the first boy born from a woman. It wouldn’t matter if the boy was an only child or the brother of older sisters. I am quoting from the Junior Judaica that my husband got for our children.

.

Okay, I just discovered that I made a mistake and it is too late for me to use the edit button. If the child had older sisters he couldnn’t be redeemed. The first child has to be a male. Everything else is correct though. Here is an interesting link about redeeming the first born.

www.beingjewish.com/cycle/pidyan.html


#16

Hi Deb,

Thanks for the input which I’ll reread.

The problem with Joseph having children form a first wife (before Mary) is with Jesus’ Davidic lineage. As I understand it, Jossph’s first born son, not Jesus, would succeed to the throne of David.

In short, as long as earlier born sons of Joseph were alive, Jesus would not be in the lineage to the throne of David.

LittleLes


#17

[quote=Fidelis]From the Catholic Answers tract Mary. Ever Virgin:

Entire article can be found at catholic.com/library/Mary_Ever_Virgin.asp
[/quote]

Hi Fidelis,

There are a number of problems with the largely fictional Protoevangelium of James which is probably why if was never taken into the canon of scripture.

We’d be getting off topic here, but if you like we can analyze them on a separate thread.

LittleLes


#18

Hi Fidelis,

I already replied to your post on the Protoevangelium of James offering to examine it is some detail on a separate thread if you really want to.

But I can’t overlook asking you one question about it.:wink:

Do you really think that if Mary made a vow of perpetual virginity when entering the Temple at the age of three it was a valid vow?:smiley:

Incredibly funny things have made their way into Catholicism over the ages. But the really strange part is that some Catholics still believe such things.:stuck_out_tongue:

LittleLes


#19

[quote=mtr01]Perhaps, but why would one use the cicumlocution “the son of my father’s brother” when “brother” is a perfectly acceptable alternative?

Then perhaps you could explain why the word “adelphos” is used in the Septuagint translation of Gen 14:14:

[/quote]

[size=2][/size]
[size=2]Obviously, the translators were aware of Lot and Abraham’s true relationship, and the Greek had the proper word, so why use “adelphos”? Perhaps they were staying true to the use of the word in the original language. Patristic evidence also suggests that Matthew’s Gospel was originally written in Hebrew or Aramaic, so the same could be said there as well. Fact is, the weight of evidence does not support your assertion.
[/size]

Your argument falls short again, as the argument from silence is extremely unconvincing. It is well known that the Church has never been in the practice of defining issues unless there is a specific threat to a traditionally held belief. Fact is, no one questioned the perpetual virginity of Mary until Helvidius (unless you can prove otherwise), therefore the Church had no reason to defend the belief. It is no wonder then, that we start to see writings defending Mary’s perpetual virginity during Jerome’s time, as a response to Helvidius’ writings.

Les, I hope for your sake that you have been playing devil’s advocate on this thread (and also recently on the thread concerning infallibility). It is one thing to take a position for the sake of argument. It is quite another to believe in the positions that you have been posting. If the latter is the case, then in all Chrisitan charity I have to point out that you are guilty of obstinately denying truths as declared by the Church. As a result you have excommunicated yourself *latae sententiae, *and are no longer in communion with the Catholic Church. If you are not willing to repent of your views, then I would ask you to update your profile to reflect your status lest you scandalize others on this forum, or even lead them astray.

Thank you.

Perhaps for the same reason that the Hebrew word “almah” or young woman was incorrectly translated as the Greek “parthanos” or “virgin” leading to Matthew’s misinterpretation of Is 7:14 and his claim of a virgin birth?:smiley:

In Timothy, Paul referes to him as “adelphos.” While this word can rarely refer to someone not an actual brother, is it really to be supposed that Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Josephus ALWAYS meant a non-brother when using the term “adelphos?”:wink: Of course not!

And until the third century, no one had any need to defend a belief that had yet to be created.:slight_smile: Do you see any reference to Mary’s perpetual virginity in scripture, or do you only read of Jesus brothers and sisters?:wink:

LittleLes


#20

Acts 1:12-15 - the gathering of Jesus’ “brothers” amounts to about 120. That is a lot of “brothers.” Brother means kinsmen in Hebrew.

Acts 7:26; 11:1; 13:15,38; 15:3,23,32; 28:17,21 - these are some of many other examples where “brethren” does not mean blood relations.

Rom. 9:3 - Paul uses “brethren” and “kinsmen” interchangeably. “Brothers” of Jesus does not prove Mary had other children.

Gen. 11:26-28 - Lot is Abraham’s nephew (“anepsios”) / Gen. 13:8; 14:14,16 - Lot is still called Abraham’s brother (adelphos") . This proves that, although a Greek word for cousin is “anepsios,” Scripture also uses “adelphos” to describe a cousin.

Gen. 29:15 - Laban calls Jacob is “brother” even though Jacob is his nephew. Again, this proves that brother means kinsmen or cousin.

Deut. 23:7; 1 Chron. 15:5-18; Jer. 34:9; Neh. 5:7 -“brethren” means kinsmen. Hebrew and Aramaic have no word for “cousin.”

2 Sam. 1:26; 1 Kings 9:13, 20:32 - here we see that “brethren” can even be one who is unrelated (no bloodline), such as a friend.

2 Kings 10:13-14 - King Ahaziah’s 42 “brethren” were really his kinsmen. :blessyou:


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