Did Jesus Have Any Brothers Sisters Or Siblings
There has been much discussion through the centuries as to the exact relationship of these men to Jesus. So the question remains, did Jesus have siblings? Three principal views have been advanced:
that they were Jesus’ actual siblings/brothers, that is, half-brothers, sons of Joseph and Mary ;
that they were His stepbrothers, that is, children of Joseph by a previous marriage ;
that they were the cousins of Jesus on the mother’s side, according to some, or on Joseph’s side, according to others.
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Did Jesus Have Brothers
Answer: We can begin to find our answer about whether Jesus had literal brothers by looking at the accounts of his family trying to talk to him. The scene in question begins with self-righteous religious leaders demanding that he give them a sign to prove he was the Messiah . Jesus rightfully labels this request as evil and rejects it. He then states that the only sign that will be given to reveal his true identity will be his resurrection from the dead after three days.
After Jesus further chides the request for a sign from a “wicked and adulterous generation” , his mother Mary and his brothers desire to speak with him. Three of the four Gospel accounts record their attempt to get someone near Jesus to get his attention and let him know what they want.
But while He was still speaking to the multitudes, behold, His mother and His brothers were standing outside, seeking to speak with Him .
In a response the multitude could hear, Jesus rhetorically asks who is his mother and brothers . He then answers his own question by stating he does not consider his most close relationships to be limited to only those who have some physical tie to him. In contrast, he states he is willing to have a close spiritual relationship, like a family, with ANYONE who does the will of God the Father .
Jude Simon Joseph And James
Jesus began wise discipline upon his brothers and sisters at such an early age that little or no punishment was ever required to secure their prompt and wholehearted obedience. The only exception was Jude, upon whom on sundry occasions Jesus found it necessary to impose penalties for his infractions of the rules of the home. On three occasions when it was deemed wise to punish Jude for self-confessed and deliberate violations of the family rules of conduct, his punishment was fixed by the unanimous decree of the older children and was assented to by Jude himself before it was inflicted. ~ The Urantia Book,
James and Simon grew up trying to follow Jesus’ plan of placating their bellicose and sometimes irate playmates by persuasion and nonresistance, and they were fairly successful; but Joseph and Jude, while assenting to such teachings at home, made haste to defend themselves when assailed by their comrades; in particular was Jude guilty of violating the spirit of these teachings. But nonresistance was not a rule of the family. No penalty was attached to the violation of personal teachings. ~ The Urantia Book,
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James Just Another Baptized Believer
Heres the nutshell version of the mythicist argument from;the popular atheist YouTuber Godless Engineer:;
No, Jesus did not have a brother named James. This belief comes from Galatians 1:19 where Paul claims to have met James, the brother of the Lord. Paul uses the word adelphos and that can either mean a blood brother or a religious kinsman. Given the context, we cant determine if Paul meant either type of brother. We can look at Pauls theology on brothers of the Lord. Paul considered any baptized Christian to be a brother/sister of the Lord. He even uses the same words to describe this type of brother. Most likely this James was just another Christian.
The mythicists arent wrong when it comes to Pauls use of the word brother. Paul refers to fellow saints as brothers or brethren dozens of times in his letters.
But theres a problem with this view. Paul calls James *the* brother of the Lord in;Galatians 1:19, not *a* brother of the Lord. If Paul was saying James was just;a brother, he likely wouldve left off the definite article. And why wouldnt Paul call Cephas a brother as well?;
Did Jesus Really Have Half
- David A. CroteauAuthor & Professor
- 20204 Dec
Jesus had at least four brothers : James, Joseph , Simon, and Judas . He also had at least two sisters , since the word for sister is plural. Even though the Greek word for brothers and sisters does not require that someone be a blood relative, it is most likely that these six people are children of Joseph and Mary and half-siblings of Jesus.
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Did Jesus Have Blood Brothers And Sisters
This question arises because the gospels refer to the brothers and sisters of our Lord.; In the New American Bibles English translation of the Gospel of St. Mark, we do indeed read about the crowd asking, Isnt this the carpenter, the son of Mary, a brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon?; Arent his sisters our neighbors here? .; A similar reference occurs earlier in Mark 3:31 His mother and brothers arrived.
The problem emerges in understanding the meaning of the word brother.; In the original text of the gospel, we find the Greek word adelphos, meaning brothers, used.; However, adelphos does not just mean blood brothers born of the same parents.; Rather, adelphos was used to describe brothers not born of the same parents, like a half-brother or step-brother.; The word also described other relationships like cousins, nephews, uncles, etc.; For example in Genesis 13:8 and 14:14-16, the word adelphos was used to describe the relationship between Abraham and Lot; however, these two men did not share a blood brother relationship, but one of uncle and nephew.; Another instance is that of Laban, who was an adelphos to Jacob, not as a brother, but as an uncle.;
The same meanings are true for the word sister in Greek.; For example, in I Chronicles 23:21-22, the sons of Kish married their sisters, a literal translation of the text, but in reality they married their cousins.
The Birth Dates Of Jesus’ Siblings
The next important event in the life of this Nazareth family was the birth of the second child, James, in the early morning hours of April 2, 3 B.C. Jesus was thrilled by the thought of having a baby brother, and he would stand around by the hour just to observe the baby’s early activities. ~ The Urantia Book,
In this year, 2 B.C., a little more than one month before his fifth birthday anniversary, Jesus was made very happy by the coming of his sister Miriam, who was born on the night of July 11. During the evening of the following day Jesus had a long talk with his father concerning the manner in which various groups of living things are born into the world as separate individuals.
Since returning to Nazareth, theirs had been a busy household, and Joseph had been unusually occupied building his new shop and getting his business started again. So fully was he occupied that he had found no time to build a cradle for James, but this was corrected long before Miriam came, so that she had a very comfortable crib in which to nestle while the family admired her. And the child Jesus heartily entered into all these natural and normal home experiences. He greatly enjoyed his little brother and his baby sister and was of great help to Mary in their care. ~ The Urantia Book,
The fourth member of the Nazareth family, Joseph, was born Wednesday morning, March 16, A.D. 1. ~ The Urantia Book,
Jesus’ second sister, Martha, was born Thursday night, September 13. ~ The Urantia Book,
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Jesus And Simon In Jerusalem
The situation was such that Jesus stopped work for three weeks to take Simon to Jerusalem for the Passover, and this was the longest period away from daily toil he had enjoyed since the death of his father. ~ The Urantia Book,
At Philadelphia Jesus and Simon became acquainted with a merchant from Damascus who developed such a great liking for the Nazareth couple that he insisted they stop with him at his Jerusalem headquarters. While Simon gave attendance at the temple, Jesus spent much of his time talking with this well-educated and much-traveled man of world affairs.;
Simon greatly enjoyed his visit to Jerusalem. He was duly received into the commonwealth of Israel at the Passover consecration of the new sons of the commandment. While Simon attended the Passover ceremonies, Jesus mingled with the throngs of visitors and engaged in many interesting personal conferences with numerous gentile proselytes. ~ The Urantia Book,
On the Sunday after Passover week Simon and Jesus started on their way back to Nazareth. Simon never forgot what Jesus taught him on this trip. He had always loved Jesus, but now he felt that he had begun to know his father-brother. They had many heart-to-heart talks as they journeyed through the country and prepared their meals by the wayside. They arrived home Thursday noon, and Simon kept the family up late that night relating his experiences.
Jude And The Crucifixion
It was shortly after daylight and just after Peter had been sent to join his brother, that Jude, Jesus’ brother in the flesh, arrived in the camp, almost breathless and in advance of the rest of Jesus’ family, only to learn that the Master had already been placed under arrest; and he hastened back down the Jericho road to carry this information to his mother and to his brothers and sisters. David Zebedee sent word to Jesus’ family, by Jude, to forgather at the house of Martha and Mary in Bethany and there await news which his messengers would regularly bring them. ~ The Urantia Book,
Although it was early in the season for such a phenomenon, shortly after twelve o’clock the sky darkened by reason of the fine sand in the air. The people of Jerusalem knew that this meant the coming of one of those hot-wind sandstorms from the Arabian desert. Before one o’clock the sky was so dark the sun was hid, and the remainder of the crowd hastened back to the city. When the Master gave up his life shortly after this hour, less than thirty people were present, only the thirteen Roman soldiers and a group of about fifteen believers. These believers were all women except two, Jude, Jesus’ brother, and John Zebedee, who returned to the scene just before the Master expired. ~ The Urantia Book,
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Don Stewart : : Did Jesus Have Brothers And Sisters
The birth of Jesus was the result of a supernatural union between God and Mary. She was a virgin at the time Jesus was conceived. There are some who maintain that Mary remained a virgin throughout her life. If this were the case, then Jesus would have been an only child. The Scriptures, however, indicate that Jesus did have brothers and sisters.
The first testimony that Mary did not remain a virgin can be found in the opening chapter of Matthew. When Joseph had discovered that Mary was going to have a child, he decided to secretly divorce her. He had not had sexual relations with her and knew the child was not his. But an angel appeared to Joseph in a dream and told him that his wife’s pregnancy was through God, the Holy Spirit. Later we are told:
And he did not know her until she gave birth to a Son; and he named him Jesus .
Matthew 1:25 strongly suggest that Joseph had normal sexual relations with Mary after the birth of Jesus. Thus this passage provides a strong argument against any idea of the perpetual virginity of Mary. Furthermore, Scripture gives testimony to the fact that Joseph and Mary had other children who were brothers and sisters of Jesus.
On another occasion we are told that the people in His hometown of Nazareth became indignant at His claims.
Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and the brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?’ And they were offended at him .
Jesus Appears To James In The Garden
The third appearance occurred about noon of this Sunday at Bethany. Shortly after noontide, Jesus’ oldest brother, James, was standing in the garden of Lazarus before the empty tomb of the resurrected brother of Martha and Mary, turning over in his mind the news brought to them about one hour previously by the messenger of David. James had always inclined to believe in his eldest brother’s mission on earth, but he had long since lost contact with Jesus’ work and had drifted into grave doubting regarding the later claims of the apostles that Jesus was the Messiah. The whole family was startled and well-nigh confounded by the news brought by the messenger. Even as James stood before Lazarus’s empty tomb, Mary Magdalene arrived on the scene and was excitedly relating to the family her experiences of the early morning hours at the tomb of Joseph. Before she had finished, David Zebedee and his mother arrived. Ruth, of course, believed the report, and so did Jude after he had talked with David and Salome.
When James perceived that Jesus was addressing him, he started to fall to his knees, exclaiming, “My father and my brother,” but Jesus bade him stand while he spoke with him. And they walked through the garden and talked for almost three minutes; talked over experiences of former days and forecast the events of the near future. As they neared the house, Jesus said, “Farewell, James, until I greet you all together.”
Older Stepbrother Son Of Joseph By An Earlier Marriage
The Gospel of James , says that Mary was betrothed to Joseph and that he already had children. In this case, James was one of Joseph’s children from his previous marriage and, therefore, Jesus’ stepbrother.
The bishop of Salamis, Epiphanius, wrote too in his work The Panarion that “…James was Joseph’s son by Joseph’s first wife, not by Mary…” He adds that Joseph became the father of James and his three brothers and two sisters with James being the elder sibling. James and his siblings were not children of Mary but were Joseph’s children from a previous marriage. After Joseph’s first wife died, many years later when he was eighty, “he took Mary “. According to Epiphanius the Scriptures call them “brothers of the Lord” to confound their opponents.
One argument supporting this view is that it would have been against Jewish custom for Jesus to give his mother to the care of John if Mary had other living sons. This is because the eldest son would take responsibility for his mother after the death of her husband; any other sons of Mary should have taken on this responsibility if they existed, therefore arguing against a direct natural brother relationship.
The Meaning Of Brother
The first thing to understand is that the term;brother; has a broader meaning than uterine brothers. It can mean a biological brother, but it can also mean an extended relative, or even a spiritual brother.
Take;Genesis 13:8;for example. Here the word;brother;is being used to describe the relationship between Abraham and Lot, who were not biological brothers but uncle and nephew:
So Abram said to Lot, Lets not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are brothers;.
Because of the Bibles broad semantic range of brother,;we can rest assured that although St. Paul writes, appeared to more than five hundredbrothers at the same time , we need not infer from this verse that Mary gave birth to more than 500 children!
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James And Jude Are Baptized With Jesus
Jesus’ brothers James and Jude had talked about going down to John for baptism; and now that Jude had come over to Capernaum for the Sabbath services, both he and James, after listening to Jesus’ discourse in the synagogue, decided to take counsel with him concerning their plans. This was on Saturday night, January 12, A.D. Jesus requested that they postpone the discussion until the following day, when he would give them his answer. He slept very little that night, being in close communion with the Father in heaven. He had arranged to have noontime lunch with his brothers and to advise them concerning baptism by John. That Sunday morning Jesus was working as usual in the boatshop. James and Jude had arrived with the lunch and were waiting in the lumber room for him, as it was not yet time for the midday recess, and they knew that Jesus was very regular about such matters.
Just before the noon rest, Jesus laid down his tools, removed his work apron, and merely announced to the three workmen in the room with him, “My hour has come.” He went out to his brothers James and Jude, repeating, “My hour has comelet us go to John.” And they started immediately for Pella, eating their lunch as they journeyed. This was on Sunday, January 13. They tarried for the night in the Jordan valley and arrived on the scene of John’s baptizing about noon of the next day.