Catholicism is the only major religion where it’s commonly believed that Jesus had no brothers and sisters, but this belief is due to TRADITION rather than scripture.
The Bible tells us that Jesus had at least four brothers and at least two sisters. The brothers names were, James, Joses, Simon and Judas, and one of the sister’s names was Salome.
It’s almost like a curse for women to not be able to have children, and especially during Biblical times, so why would Mary of all women have to go through life without any children (apart from Jesus who died) or grandchildren? That would indicate that she certainly was not BLESSED at all. The Bible nowhere says that Mary had no other children, and normally young women are able to bear children so to assume that Mary was out of luck is to start with an answer and trying to find support for this answer in the Bible.
The absolutely most common interpretations of the Greek word “adelphos” (Strong’s 80) are without a doubt either 1) brother through the blood or 2) spiritual brother. It can also mean kin/cousin but that is unusual, and we are of course not allowed to determine which alternative that is best out of personal preferences but based on the context. IF Jesus indeed had real brothers, how could this have been stated more clearly, or is this option ruled out because it doesn’t fit our own desires? Why does “blood brother” seem to be EXCLUDED as a valid option in the Roman Catholic Church? Mary retained her virginity throughout her pregnancy, but how can someone give birth to a baby and still retain her virginity?
Anepsios (Strong’s 431) = cousin (or nephew), as in Col. 4:10
Sygenes/syngeneis (Strong’s 4773) = relative (for instance cousin), as in Luke 1:36 and Luke 1:58
Married couples usually share the same bedroom and start a family
Is there anything wrong with Joseph and Mary having more children? That would be perfectly normal for a husband and a wife, and it’s not a sin for a married couple to share the same bedroom. In fact, it would be abnormal for a married couple to sleep in separate bedrooms for the rest of their lives, and to have no desire to get more children (especially during this time in history). This couple was blessed and not cursed! Paul considered it a good thing to live as a single just like he did, but only if we have the capacity. In all other cases (the majority) he recommend that we get married, and the alternative that we get married and still live in separate bedrooms, is not even considered.
1 Cor 7:2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.—5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.
From the very beginning God ordained the husband and the wife to be fruitful and multiply. Why would Joseph and Mary, of all people, refuse to obey God when it comes to this?
Genesis 1:28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth
Below we can see that Joseph actually “knew” Mary, which means sexual intimacy, but he waited until the first child was born. In this way the prophesy about the virgin birth in Isaiah came true. If someone protests and suggests that “know” doesn’t signify sexual intimacy, he/she will have a hard time explaining Luke 1:34 where we can read about Mary’s puzzlement when she realized she would be having a baby without having “known” a man (same Greek word). Moreover, it wouldn’t make sense for a godly husband to wait with getting to know his wife until after the first child is born. What would be the purpose for this?
Matthew 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:25 And KNEW HER NOT TILL SHE HAD BROUGHT FORTH HER FIRSTBORN SON: and he called his name Jesus.
Luke 1:30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus.—34 Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I KNOW NOT A MAN?35 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
Det word “know” in Matt. 1:25 is translated from the Greek word ginṓskō (Strong’s 1097) – that can mean to know, especially through personal experience, and also (sexual) intimacy. The word “till” is translated from the Greek word heós (Strong’s 2193) and can mean until, as far as and up until). This is also how the translators of the world have translated this word, and there are no reasons to not trust these Greek scholars.
25 and did not know her TILL she brought forth her son — the first-born, and he called his name Jesus. (Young’s literal)
25 Pero no la conoció HASTA que dio a luz a su hijo primogénito; y le puso por nombre JESÚS. (Reina-Valera 1960)
25 Mais il n’eut pas de relations conjugales avec elle AVANT qu’elle ait mis au monde un fils, auquel il donna le nom de Jésus. (La Bible du Semeur)
25 Und er erkannte sie nicht, BIS sie ihren ersten Sohn gebar; und hieß seinen Namen Jesus. (Luther Bibel 1545)
Two of Mary’s sons are James and Joseph – who are the brothers of Jesus
We can read that Mary was the mother of Jesus’ brothers, and that Jesus was the brother of Mary’s children. This should be clear enough. Matthew 27:56 indicates that Mary was actually the mother of James and Joseph – who are the brothers of Jesus.
Matthew 13:54 And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?55 Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?56 And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?57 And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own HOUSE.
Mark 6:2 And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands?3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.4 But Jesus, said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.
Matthew 27:55 And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him:56 “Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children.”
Mark 15:40 “There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome;”
Mark 16:1 “And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the Mother of James, and Salome, had brought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint Him.”
Mark 3:31 There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him.32 And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee.33 And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren?34 And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!
Here we can see that the disciples (the spiritual family) were distinct from his Brethren and Mother (Blood family). We can read about 1) his mother, 2) his brothers, and 3) his disciples. The disciples are listed by name and they are separate from the brothers. The spiritual brothers of Jesus are those who obey him.
John 2:11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.12 “After this He went down to Capernaum, He, and His Mother, and His Brethren, and His disciples: and they continued there not many days.”
Acts 1:13 And 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.14 “These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.”
Galatians 1:19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother.
Matthew 12:46 While he yet talked to the people, behold, his mother and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him.47 Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee.48 But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? and who are my brethren?49 And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!50 For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.
Not even Jesus’ brothers believed on him at first. It doesn’t sound just as dramatic to say that “Not even his cousins believed on him”, because many people have cousins they have hardly even met.
John 7:3 His brethren therefore said unto him, Depart hence, and go into Judaea, that thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest.4 For there is no man that doeth any thing in secret, and he himself seeketh to be known openly. If thou do these things, shew thyself to the world.5 For neither did his brethren believe in him.
Mary was blessed and full of grace, but this doesn’t mean that she lived without a single sin
Mary was not given a free ride to heaven and God is no respecter of persons as in giving aid to certain favored ones to avoid sins. Mary was BLESSED since she was chosen to give birth to Jesus Christ – the Savior of the world, and that is of course a great honor. Below you can find the verses where Mary is considered blessed and with grace, and nowhere will you see that this means that she had always lived a sin free life. She was probably a very godly woman since God chose her for the task of giving birth to Jesus, but it looks like she sinned at least once since she called God her SAVIOR.
Luke 1:48 3106. makarizó bless, pronounce blessed or happy.
Luke 1:42 2127. eulogeó (lit: I speak well of) I bless; pass: I am blessed.
Luke 1:28 5487. charitoó favor, bestow freely on.
Luke 11:27 3107. makarios happy, blessed, to be envied.
Lord,47and my spirit hath rejoiced in God MY SAVIOR. 48For He hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden; for behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
It’s a sin to worship anyone else than GOD, and there is only ONE mediator between God and man – Jesus who alone was free of sins
Luke 1:45 And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord. 46And Mary said, “My soul doth magnify thee
Rom. 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God
Matthew 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but ONE, that is God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
1 Peter 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth
Hebr. 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Hebr. 7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
Hebr. 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
John 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
1 John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin [sin offering] for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
We are to worship and pray to GOD (through Jesus) and to no one else. By praying to Mary, we are rebelling against God. Him only shall we worship and serve! There is ONE mediator between God and man, and no saints, priests or popes can save us. Much has been made of the information that she is “blessed” in all generations, but she is blessed because she was chosen to give birth to our Savior who enables the whole world to be saved through him. To interpret this as though she was in a state of sinlessness, or that she can intercede for us is certainly to add to the Bible.
Luke 4:8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ JesusRomans 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
John 13:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
John 16:23 And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
Isaiah 42:8 I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
Exodus 20:3 hou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God
Matthew 23:9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
1 Timothy 4:1-3 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
Matthew 6:7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
You can read about JESUS as THE ROCK in this blog article.
Is there anything wrong with Joseph having relations with Mary, his wife? Very much so! No man can touch the Ark of the Covenant and live. The Blessed Virgin’s womb is the door by which the Lord has entered; it is to remain shut! Did Joseph have other sons? There is no objection to that, for he could easily have been a widower before marrying Mary, but to assume that a just man like St. Joseph would even think of touching the Ark of the Covenant is absurd.
The problem is that the Bible doesn’t say that Mary is the ark of the covenant, and it’s really not needed to add to the text that she must not be touched. It would certainly not be a sin Joseph and Mary (saints just like all Christians) to be intimate with each other, and it’s a blessing for a woman to have children. The apostle Paul chose to live in celibacy but he was not married, unlike Joseph and Mary.
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