Back in July, someone asked whether Jesus had
a brother. (( Did Jesus have siblings? ))Cecil’s response quoted the New Testament and mentioned some beliefs of the Catholic Church. Sorry, Cecil, but looking to
standard translations of the Bible or to the Catholic church for historical information is kind of like looking to Aesop’s fables for zoological facts. For one thing, most current biblical translations are from Greek or Latin, which are themselves translations of more ancient languages. Jesus himself spoke Aramaic, which, like ancient Hebrew, is rich in metaphor, lending itself to multiple interpretations of any given phrase. For more on this, see the work of Neil-Douglas Klotz. Beyond the translation problem, we have to remember that the Catholic Church and translators of the Bible were and are, for the most part, more concerned with standardizing belief than with historical truth.
I entered the names Jesus and James into a search engine and found a new site called “Mysteries of the Bible” at www.biblemysteries.com/lectures/james and “James the Brother of Jesus” at www.insmkt.com/jbj.htm. I also found a ton of commentary on Robert Eisenman’s controversial book by the same name as the latter site. The people responsible for these two sites are scholars who study the Dead Sea Scrolls, which are of course much older and closer to the “original” scriptures than any Greek or Latin translations. The current controversy isn’t even about whether James was really Jesus’ brother; it’s about whether James, and not Jesus, was really the founder of what became Christianity. So I think we’re safe to say they were brothers. It’s not that I have tons of faith in everything I read on the internet, it’s just that I have more faith in the Dead Sea Scrolls than the KJV or church doctrines.
I have edited in the link to the column – CKDextHavn
[Note: This message has been edited by CKDextHavn]