How Many Siblings Does Jesus Have

How Many Brothers and Sisters Did Jesus Have?

When it came to Joseph and Mary’s household in Nazareth, who was there? Are we to believe that Jesus was an only child in the family, or if there were brothers and sisters, what was their status in regard to Him? His siblings and sisters are frequently mentioned by the gospel authors. What were the names of Jesus’ siblings? This is a matter that has been debated since the beginning of time, and many lengthy writings have been published on the subject. Due to theological reasons related to the perpetual virginity of the Lord’s mother, denominational difficulties, and the canonicity of non-apostolic epistles, it has been difficult to have an objective discussion on the subject.

Bible Verses about Jesus’ Brother and Sisters

Let us begin by summarizing what we know about the brothers and sisters of the Lord from the Scriptures of the New Testament. Their names are found in Matthew 12:46-50, 13:55-56, Mark 3:31, 6:3, and Luke 8:19, as well as John 2:12, 7:3, Acts 1:14, and 1 Corinthians 9:5, and Paul refers to a James the Lord’s brother (Galatians 1:19). There appear to have been four brothers who are listed in Matthew 13:55: James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas, according to the evidence (seeMark 6:3). The sisters are mentioned in Matthew and Mark, although neither the number nor the names of the sisters are recorded.

They were reportedly married and living in Nazareth at the time of Christ’s death.

They are first described as traveling to Capernaum with His mother and Himself (John 2:12).

Most claim that they were converted to Christianity as a result of His resurrection, since they appear in the company of the Apostles (Acts 1:14).

The following is an adaptation of The Life of Our Lord on the Earth by Samuel James Andrews.

How many siblings did Jesus have?

QuestionAnswer Two verses in the Bible provide us with information on Jesus’ brothers and sisters. “When he returned to his hometown, he began teaching the people in their synagogue, and they were astounded.” Matthew 13:54–57 states that the people were amazed. What they wanted to know was, “Where did this man receive this intelligence and these incredible powers?” ‘Isn’t this the son of the carpenter? What if his mother’s name is Mary, and his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas aren’t named the same as him?

  • ‘So, where did this man obtain all of these things?’ I wondered.
  • ‘The brother of James,’ according to Jude 1:1, is the epistle’s author and subject.
  • It is likely that both James and Jude (Judas) were among the group of siblings who were initially humiliated by their elder brother’s bold notoriety and then came to take Him home to their parents (Matthew 12:46).
  • However, after seeing Jesus’ resurrection, His siblings became devout followers of the Lord.
  • Another school of thought holds that the allusions to Jesus’ siblings merely relate to the fact that Joseph had children of his own prior to his marriage to Mary.
  • Both theories, on the other hand, lack scriptural foundation, and there is no logical reason to assume that the siblings identified by name in Scripture were not the biological children of both Mary and Joseph.

Questions about Matthew (return to top of page) How many brothers and sisters did Jesus have?

How many siblings did Jesus have?

Although there is no Bible scripture that specifically lists the names of all of Jesus’ siblings, we may conclude from the book of Mark that He had at least six of them: “What do you mean, the carpenter who is also the son of Mary, as well as a brother of James and Joses and a brother of Judas and Simon? What’s more, aren’t his sisters present with us?” (See also Mark 6:3; Matthew 12:46; and Matthew 13:53–58). Based on this text, we know that Jesus had at least four brothers, and the term “sisters” is plural, indicating that He had at least two sisters, if not more, according to the Bible.

  • Each author contributed to a book of the Bible.
  • (Galatians 1:19).
  • It has been hypothesized that the Greek terms adelphos (“brothers”) and adelphai (“sisters”), which we see referenced in Mark 6:3 and Matthew 13:54–56 to describe Jesus’ siblings, are also used in a spiritual sense to refer to brothers and sisters in general.
  • Joseph may have had more children from a prior marriage, according to this hypothesis.
  • On the basis of reasoning, Jesus’ actual siblings, who were described in the Gospels of Mark 6:3 and Matthew 13:54–55, were also Mary and Joseph’s biological offspring.
  • What happened to Joseph during Jesus’ adolescence?
  • Who exactly is Jesus?
  • What is the identity of Jesus Christ?

Did Jesus have any brothers, sisters or siblings?

Throughout history, there has been great debate about the precise nature of their link to Jesus and his apostles. Consequently, the issue remains: Did Jesus have siblings? There have been three main points of view put forward: They have been identified as (1) Jesus’ actual siblings/brothers, that is, half-brothers, sons of Joseph and Mary (and therefore younger than Jesus); (2) His stepbrothers, that is, children of Joseph by a previous marriage (and thus all older than Jesus and not His blood relatives at all); (3) Jesus’ cousins, either on the mother’s side or on the father’s side, depending on who you believe.

Where exactly was Jesus’ birthplace?

Three views about Jesus’ siblings

Some adhere to the first viewpoint, arguing that it is the most natural way to interpret the multiple allusions to these brothers, as well as the most evident intention of Matthew 1:25 and Luke 2:7. Second, those who believe in family ethics claim that younger siblings should not be permitted to mock or otherwise interfere with an older brother in the same way that Jesus’ brothers ridiculed Him (see Mark 3:31; John 7:3-4). Moreover, they argue, Jesus’ decision to entrust His mother’s care to the apostle John (John 19:26-27), rather than to one of His brothers, clearly shows that Mary did not have any other children.

Their relationship as cousins on Mary’s side is predicated on the unconfirmed identification of “Mary, the wife of Cleophus” with Mary’s sister (John 19:25; Mark 15:40), as well as the unsubstantiated relationship between “Clopas” and Alphaeus (John 19:25; Mark 15:40). (Mark 3:18).

Jesus’ brothers, sistersmother

Several of Jesus’ siblings are reported as joining him and his mother to Capernaum following their marriage at Cana (Matthew 19:9). (John 2:12). The next year, Mary and these brothers are mentioned as attempting to have an audience with Jesus (Matthew 12:46-50; Mark 3:31-35; Luke 8:19-21). A few chapters before the conclusion of Jesus’ public career, His brethren are recorded as asking Jesus to demonstrate His Messiahship, which they themselves had questioned (John 7:3-5). Their conversion is obvious from the fact that they are portrayed in Acts as joining with the disciples and others in “prayer and supplication” before to the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1–3).

Paul makes the implication that they were all married (1 Corinthians 9:5).

Also widely held to be the case is that James the brother of Jesus was the spiritual leader of the early church in Jerusalem (see Acts 12:17; 15:13).

Did Jesus Really Have Half-Siblings?

Jesus had at least four brothers, according to Matthew 13:55: James, Joseph (sometimes referred to as Joses), Simon, and Judas. James was the oldest of the brothers (also referred to as Jude). Matthew 13:56 indicates that he had at least two sisters, which is consistent with the plural form of the word “sister.” Despite the fact that the Greek term for “brothers” and “sisters” does not necessitate that someone be a blood related, it is most likely that these six persons are the offspring of Joseph and Mary and half-siblings of Jesus, according to tradition.

Why Is This Question So Controversial Among Christians?

Mary’s eternal virginity is at the heart of this debate, which has raged for more than two centuries. It is possible that Mary is eternally a virgin, in which case Jesus would have no biological relations. This offers the potential of Jesus having half-brothers and sisters if Mary remained a virgin until the birth of Jesus, but then began having sexual intercourse with her husband Joseph afterward. Because of Jesus’ virgin birth, Joseph was not his biological father, therefore they would act on his behalf as step-siblings.

In the first place, it is important to note that Jesus’ siblings were offspring of Mary and Joseph after Jesus was born (referred to as the Helvidian view).

Third, they were first cousins of Jesus, which was a great honor (the traditional Roman Catholic view).

It is true that the Greek terms for “brothers” and “sisters” can be difficult to distinguish from one another, but there existed a word for “cousin” in the Bible.

It is interesting to note that they are never referred to as Jesus’ cousins throughout the New Testament or the first two centuries of Christian history, which is surprising.

Why Are There Objections to Jesus Having Half-Brothers?

The dogma of Mary’s permanent virginity is the primary source of opposition to Jesus having half-siblings in the first place. From the early church through the Reformation, this idea was embraced by a large number of people. It is Matthew 1:25 that is important since it says, “but (Joseph) did not have sexual contact with her until she gave birth to a son.” “And he gave him the name Jesus” (CSB). In this case, the term “until” is at the core of the debate. This term signifies the conclusion of a span of time in a chronological sense.

Matthew 2:15 states that they remained in Egypt “until Herod’s death” (CSB), which is the identical term that is used in Matthew 1:25 and Matthew 2:13 as well.

The New Testament states that Mary remained a virgin until the birth of Jesus, but it makes no mention of whether or not she continued to be a virgin beyond this time.

Early Christian writings such as the Gospel of Peter (which was not actually written by Peter), the Protoevangelium of James (which was not actually written by any James in the New Testament), and the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (which was not actually written by the Apostle Thomas), all of which date from the second century, appear to support this point of view.

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There isn’t enough information to make a definitive determination on whether or not these youngsters are Mary’s biological offspring.

In the passage cited above, Matthew 1:25, it appears to indicate that Mary only remained a virgin until the birth of Jesus.

The way this line is written establishes a stronger connection between Mary and Jesus’ half-brothers than it does with Joseph.

In fact, Joseph (Mary’s husband) isn’t even mentioned by name in the text. As a result, these are most likely Mary’s offspring, as well as Jesus’ half-brothers and half-sisters.

What Do We Know about the Half-Siblings?

James was the most well-known of Jesus’ half-brothers and sisters. James the son of Zebedee, the brother of John, is not to be confused with the person named James here (seeMatthew 4:21). According to Acts 12:2, James the son of Zebedee was killed at a young age in the history of Christianity. A number of times in the New Testament, Jesus’ half-brother James is mentioned by name. Besides the passage from Matthew 13:55, we know that Mary and Jesus’ brothers (most likely included James) went to Jesus when he was ministering to the people (Matthew 12:46;Mark 3:31;Luke 8:19-20).

  • Because the terms “brothers” and “disciples” are distinct, it is most likely that these are the sons of Mary, half-brothers of Jesus, and most likely include James as well.
  • Clearly, the term “brothers” does not apply to persons who are members of Jesus’ society but are connected biologically, as the passage above indicates.
  • According to the evidence, James turned to Christianity sometime after the events of John 7 and before the events of Acts 12.
  • In Galatians 1:19, the apostle Paul refers to James as Jesus’ brother.
  • Most evangelical academics think that the Letter of James was written by Jesus’ half-brother, James (seeJames 1:1).
  • There is less information available concerning Jesus’ other half-siblings.
  • They are mentioned in 1Corinthians 9:5 in the context of traveling gospel ministers: “Don’t we have the right to be accompanied by a believing woman, just as the other apostles, the Lord’s brothers, and Cephas did?” (CSB).

James’ brother, Jude, asserts himself to be the author of the book, who is most likely the half-brother of Jesus.

While several hypotheses for the identification of Jude have been advanced, none of them appear to be more plausible than the possibility that he is Jesus’ half-brother.

Even though they claimed to be farmers in the vicinity of Rome, the veracity of their narrative has been put into question.

The controversy over whether or not Jesus had half-siblings is inextricably linked to the dogma of Mary’s eternal virginity, which is discussed below.

Joseph and Mary had at least six children following the birth of Jesus, according to the most logical interpretation of the biblical narrative, including at least four males and at least two girls.

Photograph courtesy of Getty Images/MichaelTruelove.

Croteau (Ph.D., Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary) is Professor of New Testament at Columbia International University, as well as Associate Dean and Director of the Ph.D.

The following books are among his many publications: Urban Legends of the Old Testament (co-authored with Gary Yates, B H, 2019), Urban Legends of the New Testament (B H, 2015),Tithing After the Cross (Energion, 2013), and You Mean I Don’t Have to Tithe (Energion, 2013). (Pickwick, 2010).

How many brothers and sisters did Jesus have?

What was the total number of brothers and sisters that Jesus had? I’m aware that James was His younger brother.

Bible Answer:

Despite the fact that the New Testament informs us that Jesus had four brothers, it does not provide information on how many sisters He had. Isn’t this the carpenter’s son, or something? Isn’t His mother, Mary, and his brothers, James and Joseph, as well as Simon and Judas, all named Mary? And His sisters, aren’t they all here with us as well? (NASB) The Bible says in Matthew 13:55-56:

James

James was Jesus’ first sibling, and he was born in Bethlehem. According to the apostle Paul, he was a member of the apostles’ group. I did not, however, see any of the apostles other than James, the Lord’s brother, and that was a disappointment. The church in Jerusalem was led by him, and he was its spiritual leader (Acts 12:17; 15:13). We also think that this brother was the author of the book of James in the New Testament.

Joseph

This sibling was given the name of Jesus’ paternal grandfather. Normally, we would expect Jesus to be called after his father, but Joseph was instructed by an angel to name Him Jesus. “In a dream, an angel of the Lord came to him and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be frightened to take Mary as your wife, for that which has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.” As a result, she will get pregnant and give birth to a son, whom you will name Jesus, because it is He who will redeem His people from their sins.” (NASB) Matthew 1:20–21 (NASB) This brother went by two different names.

Jesus also goes by the name Joses, which may be found in Mark 6:3).

Simon

We don’t know anything about this sibling of Jesus’s background.

Judas

This brother goes by the name of Jude as well. He was not the betrayer Judas Iscariot. We assume this brother is the author of the book of Jude because he refers to himself as James’ brother in the book. A bond-servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, Jude is a man of faith who. (NASB) Jude 1The heart of this guy is revealed in the book of Jude. He was making an effort to maintain his religion. He was a devout Christian who devoted his life to God.

Conclusion:

It is revealed in Scripture that His brothers did not believe in Him in the outset. not even His brothers were believing in Him at the time of His death. (NASB) 7:5 (John 7:5) Did they all come to trust in Jesus in the end? We don’t know what to say. However, the Bible does disclose that at least two of Jesus’ brothers were Christians: James, who was an apostle, and Jude, who was a disciple. Scripture doesn’t provide us with any further information on His other brothers and sisters, either.

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I’m curious when the notion in Mary’s everlasting virginity first gained traction. God is being sought after.

Did Jesus Have Brothers and Sisters?

The marriage of God and Mary that resulted in the birth of Jesus was the outcome of a supernatural union. At the time of Jesus’ conception, she was still a virgin. Some believe that Mary was a virgin during her whole life, and that this is correct. According to this interpretation, Jesus would have been an only child. The Scriptures, on the other hand, reveal that Jesus had siblings and sisters of his own. Matthew’s Statements Earliest and foremost, the first chapter of Matthew provides the first evidence that Mary was not a virgin after the birth of Jesus.

  1. He had never had sexual intercourse with her and was well aware that the child was not his biological child.
  2. And he didn’t know her until she gave birth to a son, whom he called Jesus, according to what we’re told later (Matthew 1:25).
  3. As a result, this verse presents a compelling case against any notion of Mary’s permanent virginity.
  4. While he was still speaking to the throngs of people,.
  5. His assertions caused the people in His hometown of Nazareth to get enraged, we are informed on yet another occasion.

“And aren’t his sisters here with us?” I inquire. And they were displeased with him (Mark 6:3). There are three possible solutions to the mystery of who Jesus’ brothers and sisters are. Who were these Jesus-following brothers and sisters? There are three possible outcomes to consider.

  1. As a result of a prior marriage, there were children born to Mary and Joseph after Jesus was born, resulting in His younger brothers and sisters (natural half-brothers and sisters)
  2. These were the offspring of Joseph from that previous marriage (step-brothers and sisters). This was the point of view of Epiphanius, a fourth-century supporter of Mary’s everlasting virginity who held this belief. It was also the point of view of the classical scholar Jerome at the time. The famous scholar Joseph Barber Lightfoot, among others, has defended this point of view in modern times, stating that they were cousins of Jesus rather than genuine brothers and sisters. They were the sons of Cleopas, who was purportedly Joseph’s brother or brother-in-law
  3. They were the sons of Cleopas
  4. And they were the sons of Joseph.

The manner in which they are labeled is one of the reasons why some people feel they were not the offspring of Joseph and Mary. According to Mark 6:3, Jesus is referred to as the “Son of Mary,” and he is distinguished from the other named brothers as well as the other female siblings. In the Upper Room, There Was a Dispute Among those present in the upper chamber were “Mary, Jesus’ mother, and. his brothers” (Acts 1:14). They were referred to as Hisbrothers rather than her sons in this context.

  • SummaryJesus had four brothers and at least two sisters, according to the gospels.
  • Though no one can be certain of the facts, it is reasonable to assume that the allusions to his younger brothers and sisters were made by him in the context of his genuine younger brothers and sisters.
  • Later on, however, they rose to prominence as church leaders, with two of them (James and Jude) penning letters that were eventually included in the New Testament as a result of their efforts.
  • However, there is no way to know for definite.

Did Jesus have brothers and sisters?

The lone kid is frequently given a negative reputation. People who grow up without siblings are often stereotyped as entitled and self-important, and this is especially true among those of us who have at least one sibling or two of our own to compare them to. Even though Jesus appears to have behaved as if he were an only child at times in the gospels, all four of the gospel writers make some mention of his brothers and sisters. As recorded in Mark, a large group of people confronted Jesus and said, “Isn’t this the carpenter?

  • Isn’t he the brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon?
  • When a throng assembled to hear Jesus speak is informed that “your mother and your brothers are standing outside, yearning to see you,” Jesus famously dismisses them, saying, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it” (8:19-21).
  • (2:12).
  • After the virgin birth of Jesus, another fourth-century theologian, Helvidius, wrote that Mary had additional children with her husband, Joseph, which sparked the first documented debate between St.
  • However, according to St.
  • These children of Mary, according to Jerome, were descended from Mary of Clopas, Jesus’ aunt and his mother’s sister, thereby making them cousins of the Savior himself.
  • Advertisement In addition, Epiphanius, bishop of Salamis and a contemporary of Jerome and Helvidius, drew attention to another alternative.
  • When it comes to the birth of Jesus, Joseph is never mentioned, leading some to conclude that he was considerably older than Mary and that he died before Jesus began his public career.
  • This is not the first time that this has been suggested.
  • In their writings, the New Testament writers did not provide a clear picture of what first-century Christians believed about Mary’s virginity following the birth of Jesus, assuming they provided any information at all.
  • This article is also accessible in Spanish for those who prefer to read it that way.

This story first published in the December 2013 issue of United States Catholic (Vol. 78, No. 12, page 46). Do you have a question you’d like to have addressed? Inquire with us at [email protected]! Image courtesy of Flickr user Nicole O’Neil Photography.

Did Jesus have siblings?

What is the Catholic Church’s reasoning for declaring Jesus to be a “only child” though the Bible states he had “brothers and sisters”? An important point to note about ancient languages such as Hebrew and Greek is that they did not always clearly distinguish between different types or degrees of relationship. The terms “brother” and “sister” were frequently used to refer to all members of the same family or clan. For example, in Genesis 14:16, the Hebrew language refers to Lot as Abraham’s “brother,” despite the fact that Lot is actually Abraham’s nephew.

  1. Therefore, some translations translate the term “kin” as a more appropriate translation here.
  2. Despite the fact that he is referred to as King Herod’s “brother” in three of the Gospels (Matthew 14:3, Mark 6:17, and Luke 3:19), we know from other historical sources that he was really Herod’s half-brother, rather than his brother.
  3. In Matthew 13:55–56, the names of certain “brothers” of Jesus are mentioned: James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas, to name a few.
  4. It’s likely that their brothers Simon and Judas were not also offspring of the Virgin, either.
  5. We must rely on the teaching of the Church, which produced the Scriptures as a compilation of her tradition, in order to have an accurate understanding.
  6. Another point to consider: If Mary had other children, why would Jesus, as He was dying, place her into the care of someone who was not a member of their family?
  7. John in those circumstances.
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Did Jesus have brothers and sisters (siblings)?

Yes! Both brothers and sisters are mentioned by name in the Bible as belonging to Jesus. Because Joseph was younger than Jesus, they would all have been younger than Jesus “had no sexual relations with her (Mary) until she became the mother of a son And he gave Him the name Jesus as a result ” (Matthew 1:25). They were born after Jesus, as a result of the marriage of Mary and Joseph, who were both Jesus’ mother and earthly father at the time of His birth. As a result, they were legally his half-blood siblings, as they had a common mother, but Jesus’ actual Father is God in Heaven (Luke 2:29).

Biblical Evidence of BrothersSisters

It is recorded in the Scriptures that Jesus’ mother and brothers came to visit Him while He was teaching (Matthew 12:46; Luke 8:19; Mark 3:31). The identities of his four brothers are revealed in Matthew 13:55: James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas, to mention a few. James is also identified as a sibling of Jesus in Galatians 1:19. In Acts 1:14, the mother and brothers of Jesus are mentioned as being among those who prayed with the disciples. Jesus’ sisters are mentioned in Matthew 13:56, albeit they aren’t given a number or a name.

He was well aware that the Jews desired to have Him killed, but the moment had not yet arrived for this to occur, so Jesus remained in Galilee.

The Controversy of Cousins

Several scholars argue that Jesus’ brothers were actually His cousins, based on the fact that the Greek term for “brother” may refer to other relatives in specific cases. However, while there is a distinct Greek term for “cousin,” that word was never employed in any of the allusions to Jesus’ siblings in the New Testament. Aside from that, if Mary wasn’t their mother, it wouldn’t make logical that they would be placed in attenance with her on a regular basis. In the biblical context, there is nothing that suggests that they were anything other than Jesus’ real, blood-related half-brothers.

In contrast to this, the Bible does not present any proof to support this claim.

(Matthew 2:20-23).

ALSO SEE:

  • What is the identity of Jesus Christ? Is Jesus the Son of God? Is Jesus our brother or sister? When did Jesus realize that He was the Son of God?
TL;DR

Both brothers and sisters are mentioned by name in the Bible as belonging to Jesus. Because Joseph was younger than Jesus, they would all have been younger than Jesus “had no sexual relations with her (Mary) until she became the mother of a son And he gave Him the name Jesus as a result ” (Matthew 1:25). They were born after Jesus, as a result of the marriage of Mary and Joseph, who were both Jesus’ mother and earthly father at the time of His birth. As a result, they were legally his half-blood siblings because they had a common mother, but Jesus’ actual Father is God in Heaven.

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The Brothers of Jesus: Loving the Unbelieving Relative

“The Brothers of Jesus: Loving the Unbelieving Relative,” a publication from the Society of Jesus. The Ensign, March 1987, page 50 For many of us, we have a father or mother, a husband or wife, a brother or sister, a son or daughter who does not believe in the faith that we hold so dear. However, despite the fact that many sympathetic and useful lectures have been delivered on how to best manage this issue, I have never heard one that sought to explore how the Savior dealt with it in his own family.

  1. But even from the few instances that have been recorded, as well as from the end consequence of Jesus’ labors with his family, we may gain a great deal of insight.
  2. The names of the sisters have not been recorded, but the brothers were known by the names James (in Hebrew, Jacob), Joses (in Hebrew, Joseph, after his father), Simon, and Judas or Juda (in Hebrew, Juda) (also known as Jude).
  3. 13:55; see also Matthew 13:55).
  4. Although there is no biblical proof for this, it is widely believed.
  5. (SeeMatt.
  6. Immediately following the wedding at Cana (which, based on the roles played by Mary and Jesus at the feast, was almost certainly a close relative’s wedding), the entire family traveled with Jesus and his early followers to neighboring Capernaum, where they resided for a short period of time.
  7. “Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee,” writes the gospel writer Luke, describing the Savior’s first missionary journey: “And there went out a reputation of him throughout all the surrounding region.
  8. When he made his accusations, the crowd grew so enraged that they attempted to throw him from the cliff.
  9. (See Luke 4:16–30 for further information.) In spite of their exposure to his words and acts, “neither his brethren believed in him,” according to the sad fact of the situation.
  10. He screamed, “A prophet is not without respect in his own nation, and among his own kin, and in his own house,” despite the fact that he had established himself as a prophet and healer whose reputation had become well known across the area because of the Nazarenes’ sarcastic attitude.
  11. On one occasion, his mother and brothers interrupted a gathering in which he was preaching the gospel, and we may have caught a glimpse of it.

“Then his mother and brothers came to him, but they were prevented from approaching him because of the press.” And he was informed by a source who stated, “Thy mother and brethren are waiting outside, yearning to meet thee.” And he responded by saying, “My mother and my brethren are those who hear the word of God and put it into practice.” (See also Luke 8:19–21.) Some people have interpreted Jesus’ remarks as being harsh.

Although his family did not fully comprehend it at the time, the Savior knew what they did not: that the bonds of faith and covenant are stronger than the bonds of blood, and that his role as eldest son in the family, which they respected, was insignificant when compared to his role as Savior and Redeemer.

Speaking of the Christ who should come, Abinadi taught:“When his soul has been offered a sacrifice for sin he shall behold his seed.

And who shall be his seed?“Behold I say unto you, that whosoever has heard the words of the prophets, … all those who have hearkened unto their words, and believed that the Lord would redeem his people, and have looked forward to that day for a remission of their sins, I say unto you, that these are his seed.” (Mosiah 15:10–11.) The Savior’s disappointment and pain at the faithlessness of his earthly brothers were much more poignantly revealed at Calvary.

  1. From the cross, Jesus looked down at his distraught mother weeping together with a small cluster of disciples.
  2. Evidently none were disciples, committed to love God and one another and to follow the way he had taught.
  3. What mixed feelings Jesus must have had when he declared to his mother: “Woman, behold thy son!“ Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother!
  4. Before considering what we might learn from the Savior’s experience, we need to follow the course of his brothers’ lives after the Crucifixion.
  5. (See1 Cor.
  6. James and his brothers responded as did Saul of Tarsus and Alma the Younger and the four sons of Mosiah.
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Immediately following the ascension of Christ, the Apostles returned to Jerusalem to the home of John Mark’s mother: “When they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.” Then Luke makes this revealing observation: “These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.” (Acts 1:13–14.) At last, the brothers of the Lord had taken upon themselves his name and become, in very truth, members of his family!

  • James quickly rose to a position of leadership.
  • Three years after his conversion, aboutA.D.38, Paul traveled to Jerusalem to meet with a few church leaders.
  • 1:18–19.) At another time during a period of intense persecution, Herod killed James the brother of John and imprisoned Peter.
  • After describing his escape, Peter instructed them to “go shew these things unto James, and to the brethren.” (Acts 12:7–17.) A few years later, Paul and Barnabus attended a council at Jerusalem concerning Jewish requirements for gentile Christians.
  • (SeeActs 15:6–31.) Paul, in referring to that event, wrote of “James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars.” (Gal.
  • Whatever his exact position in the early church government, we treasure James’s general epistle to the church.
  • In a similar vein, another of the four brothers opens his epistle with “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James.” (Jude 1:1.) We know little about Jude except what we learn from his epistle.

(SeeJude 1:5, 7, 14–15.) From his denunciation of certain kinds of apostasy, we also know that his letter was one of the later epistles in the New Testament.

All four brothers, family members who had once looked at Jesus as their elder brother only, were able to accept him as the Lord and the Son of God.

It is true that the Savior’s family was unique.

But in another sense, every converted person who deeply loves his or her unbelieving spouse or relative suffers as Jesus suffered over his faithless brothers.

We must never lose sight of the eternal realities—the worth of each soul, the inviolability of each soul’s agency, and the universality of the plan of salvation.

It is well to remember that those of whom it was once written “Neither did his brethren believe in him” ended by designating themselves servants “of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.” So it may be for our Jameses and our Judes, our Sauls and our Almas, and all of their female counterparts.

In a personal, intimate way, Jesus himself suffered so that he is able to succor them that also suffer. (SeeHeb. 2:18;Alma 7:12.)

How to Respond When People Say Jesus Had Brothers and Sisters

From the early days following the Resurrection, the Church has held that Mary was a perpetual virgin and that Jesus did not have any biological brothers or sisters, as was traditionally thought. The carpenter, son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, is this not the carpenter, and are his sisters with us?” “Are his sisters among us?” —Matthew 6:3 Is it possible that Jesus had siblings and sisters? Some people believe that the Gospel of Mark appears to support their claim.

  1. The subject is brought up once more in Luke 8:19-21.
  2. “Your mother and brothers are gathered outside, waiting to meet you,” the mob exclaims loudly.
  3. “Can you tell me who my mother and brothers are?” he inquires.
  4. On his blog, biblical historian James Tabor provides the names of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon, as well as Mary and Salome, according to some sources.
  5. So where did Catholics obtain the concept that Mary never had sexual relations or had any other children of her own?
  6. What is your brother’s name?
  7. We Christians are all “brothers in Christ,” as the phrase goes.
  8. The same is true in the Scriptures as well.

Consider the following verse from Genesis 13:8: For this reason, Abram replied to Lot, “Let us not have any quarrels among ourselves or between your herders and mine, for we are brothers.” Despite the fact that Abraham and Lot are not biological siblings, the title “brother” is used to describe them since they are uncle and nephew.

  • Without a doubt, Paul was not attempting to make the assertion that Mary had given birth to more than 500 children!
  • What occurred to the Twelve following the Resurrection of Christ is known to us from the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles, as well as from historical documents.
  • We know how they died, and we know where they are laid to rest.
  • Nope, not a thing, zilch.
  • As he lay dying, Jesus handed Mary over to John the Baptist.
  • And then he turned to face John and said, “Behold your mother.” And it was at that point that the disciple welcomed her into his house (John 19:26-27).
  • And wouldn’t they have taken on the task of caring for their mother by welcoming her into their own homes?

Another clue: The “brothers” of Jesus mentioned in John 2:1 and Acts 1:14 are never referred to as Mary’s offspring, despite the fact that Jesus himself is.

There is yet more reason, though, to conclude that Mary did not have any further children after Joseph and Mary.

Consider the promise made by Jesus, who said that he would send the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete, to lead his Church and keep her safe from error.

However, we do have Christ’s promise that he would be with us forever, until the end of time.

Mary was thought to be a perpetual virgin from the very beginning of the Church’s belief in the Resurrection, and Jesus was believed to have no biological brothers or sisters from his birth.

Saint Joseph was an elderly widower with children, according to the Protoevangelium, and he had been selected by the angel Gabriel to be Mary’s spouse in order to care and protect Mary while also observing her vow of virginity.

Many people in the Orthodox Church now consider this to be true as well.

360.

383 wrote: “You assert that Mary did not continue a virgin: I claim even more than Joseph himself, on account of Mary being a virgin, so that from a virgin marriage a virgin son was born.” And in the following century, Pope St.

Did Jesus have “blood” brothers and sisters?

This concern arises because the gospels make frequent references to our Lord’s “brothers” and “sisters.” According to the English version of the Gospel of St. Mark provided by the New American Bible, the throng does indeed inquire: “Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James and Joses, as well as Judas and Simon?” “Aren’t his sisters our next-door neighbors?” (Matthew 6:3). A similar passage may be seen earlier in Mark 3:31 — “His mother and brothers came to see him.” The difficulty arises while attempting to comprehend the meaning of the wordbrother.

Adelphos, on the other hand, does not just refer to blood brothers who were born to the same parents.

Other types of connections, such as cousins, nephews, and uncles, were also described by the term.

Another example is Laban, who was anadelphosto Jacob, but not as a brother, but as an uncle, according to the Torah.

The same is true for the wordister in Greek, which has the same meaning.

Actually, the misconception stems from the languages of Hebrew and Aramaic, which were the languages of most of the original Old Testament manuscripts as well as the language of Christ.

When the Old Testament was translated into Greek and the New Testament was written in Greek, the wordadelphoswas employed to capture all of these connotations for male relations in the Old Testament and the New Testament, respectively.

On the whole, there is a misunderstanding in English because of the lack of specific terminology for relatives in both Hebrew and Aramaic, as well as because the Greek adelphos is used to refer to all of these relationships.

Mary of Cleophas had two sons, James and Joses, who were named after her (Mark 15:40).

Judas was the son of James (not one of the apostles), and he was a traitor (Luke 6:16).

The sons of Zebedee, James the greater and John, had a mother other than our Blessed Mother Mary, who was their grandmother (Matthew 20:20ff).

Matthew 1:18-25, Luke 1:26-38).

Always, and only, does it allude to the “sons of Mary” or “a son of Mary,” but always to the “son of Mary.” This argument is reinforced once again during the crucifixion scene, when our Lord says to Mary, “Woman, there is your son,” and then to St.

” According to Jewish law, the oldest son was responsible for caring for his widowed mother, and if something occurred to the first born son, the burden would be passed on to the next oldest son.

Joseph had passed away by this point.

John, the Beloved Disciple.

Joseph was a widower who had other children before he met and married Mary.

Perhaps it is because of this belief that St.

Actually, this entire state of misunderstanding is nothing new.

“A unique, evil, and audacious assault on the religion of the entire globe,” according to St.

Jerome utilized Scripture as well as the writings of the fathers such as Saints Ignatius, Polycarp, Irenaeus, and Justin Martyr to oppose Helvidius in his work On the Perpetual Virginity of the Blessed Virgin.

This belief is founded on Sacred Scripture and Tradition.

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