If you click on the image to the left and then make it larger you can read an explanation of the relationships of Jesus’ brothers.
Steve: never are His siblings referred to as anything else to lend credence to them being cousins, like “sister’s son” for example. Or, children from Joseph’s previous marriage, which has no standing in Scripture whatsoever. How is it possible to at the same time justify a belief in Joseph having a previous marriage without historical evidence, or even a single Bible verse to back it up? It is an indefensible argument.
BFHU:In the semitic languages there is no word for aunt, uncle, cousin etc b/c in the small communities in which language developed everyone knew what you meant when you called a particular person your brother or sister. They knew they were a sibling or other relative and they knew the relationship. To be precise they could certainly have used “sister’s son” but that is cumbersome and required more analysis than saying “brother” Please see this post–>Who Were the Brothers & Sisters of Jesus?
Brothers and Sisters of Jesus
The Protoevangelium of James
has Joseph being widowed and older; having children from a previous marriage.
This is one possibility: that the brothers and sisters were step-brothers and step-sisters. The other possibility is that the words brothers and sisters refer to kinsman rather than siblings. Just like it does elsewhere in Scripture.
Steve: Whereas, believing what the Bible says offers all of the knowledge and understanding we need on the subject.
BFHU: We believe what the Bible says but we interpret it differently based on historical information from the ancient Church and history.Protestants pretty much ignore Christian History after the Book of Acts until the Protestant Reformation era.
Steve: This dogma has done nothing more than cause countless people to worship Mary
BFHU: We do not worship Mary. Adam and Eve were also created immaculate. Sinlessness does not equal deity.
Steve: Claiming it as a “tradition” is not proof, and it does not lend historical evidence.
BFHU: When we talk about tradition we can mean two things. First of all there is what we call TRADITION which is not folksy or something that evolved over time to be a practice of the Catholic Faith. When we talk about Scripture and TRADITION with a capital “T” for instance, we mean nothing less than the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES.
Scripture is the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES and
Tradition is the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES.
That is why we hold both of them sacred. We have other traditions of our Faith that are not Apostolic teaching. The Immaculate Conception and Perpetual Virginity of Mary are TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES or what we call, for short, TRADITION. The Traditions that are also TEACHINGS OF THE APOSTLES are also called DOGMA. So if you come across a tradition that is not a dogma, it is NOT Apostolic teaching but tradition with a lower case “t”.
Steve: I won’t bother quoting Scripture from Exodus 20 about idols and bowing before them.
BFHU: Regarding the worship of idols please see this post—>Protestant Tradition of Men: Catholics worship Idols.
Regarding Mary Co-Redemptrix
Steve: Many Catholics wish to see her raised to the status of co-redeemer. As if to say, “the job was just too much for Jesus alone, Mary had to have helped him.”
BFHU: First, we are not “raising” her status. She already is a cooperator or coredemptrix. There is simply debate about whether to officially give her this title. Secondly, are you aware that Muslims vehemently reject that God begot a son because that would mean He needed help and it takes away from the sovereignty and power of Allah!
We both believe no such thing about Jesus, Son of God. And Catholics believe no such thing about Mary being needed by Jesus. He certainly did NOT need Mary. But, throughout Biblical history God has chosen to accomplish His purposes through faithful men and women. God could have just zapped a Man-God baby or man to earth and carried on from there but He chose to be incarnate with the help and seed of Mary. I don’t pretend to know why God insists on having people help Him. But it is undeniable that He has people help Him throughout history.
Steve: But it seems strange to me, that we should both claim the Bible as our base for a foundation,
BFHU: Yes. And this is true of all the Protestant denominations as well. Despite using the same Bible, people interpret scriptures differently when their faith is unhinged from 1500 years of Christian history. The Catholic Faith however, is the Church founded by Jesus Christ Himself and has existed continuously for nearly 2000 years.
Steve: …..yet one of these beliefs has no grounds to stand on in the Bible to even begin to prove it.
BFHU: Neither view of the “brothers of Jesus” can be proved from Scripture alone. We must therefore, look to historical evidence to settle the question.
Steve: Nor Biblical wording to account for such behavior and thinking.
BFHU: And yet, nothing we believe contradicts Scripture. It only contradicts Protestant interpretations, which is not the same thing.