James: The Half-Brother of Jesus:
Faith in Focus Column – from the Clipper Newspaper
By Pastor Chris Jordan
Many people know that Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary. But what few people realize is that after Mary and Joseph were married, she had many more children – four sons and at least two daughters:
“Then Jesus went out from there and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him. And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, “Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” And they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.” (Mark 6:1-4).
James was one of those half-brothers of Jesus. He had a unique insight into the life of Christ, having grown up in the same household with Him as His younger brother. They played together, went to school together, and probably worked alongside of their father Joseph in his carpenter’s shop.
While Jesus was alive, James did not believe that Jesus was the Christ (see John 7:5). However, after Jesus died on the Cross and three days later rose from the dead, James became one of the greatest leaders in the Church. In the New Testament, we have twenty-one letters that were written by the apostles, including ones penned by Paul, Peter, John and Jude (another one of Jesus’ brothers). And one of those letters was written by James, who was nick-named James the Just.
In May and June, we are going on a journey through the book of James at Beausejour Community Church, to glean wisdom from the little half-brother of Jesus. He said many profound things like: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights” and “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” and “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results.”
You can read his story in the Bible, too!