James A Nazarite In The Womb

James-the-Just

John The Baptist PaintingIn the Gospel of Thomas, early Christians are bid to go to the brother of Jesus for guidance. Paul negates the last wishes of Jesus, claiming he got the message he is spreading from no man, but from Jesus in heaven while on the road to Damascus to destroy the church that James the Just in charge of. Surely James challenged Paul’s claims, and bid him to perform a ritual of purification, or, take the Nazarite vow. Paul failed the test and was arrested.

“We are aware that you will depart from us. Who will be our leader?”
Jesus answered: “No matter where you come from, it is to James the Just that you shall go, for whose sake heaven and earth have come to exist.”

Like John the Baptist, the brother of Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit while in his mother’s womb, and was an unborn Nazarite. Surely Jesus was aware of his brother’s kinship to John, and knew that he stirred in his mother’s womb when his mother visited her pregnant cousin, Elizabeth. If John the Nazarite pointed to Jesus, then Jesus pointed to James the Nazarite. That Jesus stirred in the womb suggests John passed on the Holy Nazarite Spirit on to his cousin.

The mission of John and James was this…….

“He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God”

Paul’s mission is just the opposite……..

“Paul will lead many away from God and make many Gentiles followers of Paul.”

Paul makes Jesus his own personal god who is giving only Paul instructions from beyond the grave. Paul ignores the God of the Jews and the Judaic Kingdom of God. Indeed, Paul invents anti-Semitism, and bids his Gentile followers to ignore the teaching of Moses – THE GREAT LIBERATOR FROM SLAVERY. Hmmm! Was Moses a great threat to Roman leaders who owned slaves?

Nazarites appear to be Super Patriots and Nationalists, who took a vow to be obedient to God – and be the slave of no man! Nazarites are everything millions of evangelical claim they are, but, they are sheepish believers in Paul, the Roman god. They are also Chicken Little followers of the End Times, invented John Darby in 1840.

Evangelical leaders in Congress say Jesus elected them to take care of our Nation’s Secular Wallet so we can be returned to Fiscal Responsibility by elected Big Daddies of the Holy Wallet that speak for God-Jesus.

“Jesus wants me to balance the budget while not raising taxes on the rich.”

Note the long face of James in several paintings. Is this a genetic trait? If so, the shroud of Turin might hold the image of a man who descends from James who was married.

Hey! Just one more thing…..You don’t think James baptized his brother, instead of John? And the Dove of the Holy Spirit descend and came into Jesus…….who was now a Nazarite!

By all means, you Christian leaders follow Paul – straight to hell!

“”No matter where you come from, it is to James the Just that you shall go, for whose sake heaven and earth have come to exist.”

James was greater than any Pope!

Oh! Just one more thing, why didn’t the resurrected Jesus give the message he allegedly later gave to Paul, to Cleopas and Emmaus to spread all over the world, so as not to create a schism over circumcision, and drive those who survived Paul’s persecutions from the Church of Jesus and God? I mean, why appoint a Serial Killer over these nice Christian folks who invited Jesus to dinner, and not a Torture Fest?

Did Cleopas and Emmaus later have to run and hide from the mad-killer they later were forced to follow?

“I don’t know about you, Cleopas, but, I’m done being nice to Christians. You can’t trust them!”
“As far as I’m concerned there was only one true Christian, and he ate at our table. Remember him?”

“The Gospel of Luke 24:13-32 describes the encounter on the road and the supper, and states that while a disciple named Cleopas was walking towards Emmaus with another disciple, they met Jesus. They did not recognise him, and discussed their sadness at recent events with him. They persuaded him to come and eat with them, and in the course of the meal they recognised him.”

Jon Presco

Copyright 2013

The most complete description of James the Just is found in Saint Jerome’s De Viris Illustribus, which quotes from the fifth book of Hegesippus’ lost Commentaries:

After the apostles, James the brother of the Lord surnamed the Just was made head of the Church at Jerusalem. Many indeed are called James. This one was holy from his mother’s womb. He drank neither wine nor strong drink, ate no flesh, never shaved or anointed himself with ointment or bathed. He alone had the privilege of entering the Holy of Holies, since indeed he did not use woolen vestments but linen and went alone into the temple and prayed in behalf of the people, insomuch that his knees were reputed to have acquired the hardness of camels’ knees. James the Just

Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. 16 He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

The Pauline letters – our earliest primary record of the new Jesus tradition – evidence the crucial role played by “revelation” and “spiritual manifestations” during the tradition’s formation. Paul claimed knowledge of Jesus granted to him in its entirety through revelation. The story of Paul’s vision of Jesus on the road to Damascus is well known. In his letter to the Galician’s, dated between 48 and 58 CE, Paul boldly declares the exclusive revelatory source of his knowledge:

“I must make it clear to you, my friends, that the gospel you heard me preach is no human invention. I did not take it over from any man; no man taught it me; I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. …When that happened, without consulting any human being, without going up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before me, I went off at once to Arabia, and afterwards returned to Damascus. Three years later I did go up to Jerusalem to get to know Cephas. I stayed with him a fortnight, without seeing any other of the apostles, except James the Lord’s brother.” (Gal 1:11-12, 16-19. The point is restated in the pseudepigraphic Pauline letter to the Ephesians, 3:3-5.)

Acts of the Apostles is also attributed to Luke (see Luke-Acts) and in Acts 18:18, Paul cut off his hair because of a vow he had taken,[35] we learn that the early Jewish Christians occasionally took the temporary Nazarite vow, and it is probable that the vow of St. Paul mentioned in Acts 18:18, was of a similar nature, although the shaving of his head in Cenchræ, outside of Palestine, was not in conformity with the rules laid down in the sixth chapter of Numbers, nor with the interpretation of them by the Rabbinical schools of that period.[36] If we are to believe the legend of Hegesippus quoted by Eusebius,[37] St. James the Less, Bishop of Jerusalem, was a Nazarite, and performed with rigorous exactness all the practices enjoined by that rule of life. and in Acts 21:20–24 Paul was advised to counter the claims made by some Judaizers (that he encouraged a revolt against the Mosaic Law). He showed the “believers there” (believers in Jesus, i.e. the Jewish Christians) in Jerusalem otherwise by purifying himself and accompanying four men to the temple who had taken nazaritic vows[38] (so as to refute the naysayers[39]).

James the Just was the oldest brother of Jesus and one of the leaders of the early Christian community in Jerusalem. He was also known as James the Righteous. Both words, “just” and “righteous”, refer to his honesty, piety and strict ascetic practices. Because of his importance in the early church, a letter attributed to him was included in the New Testament as the Epistle of James. But his leadership role put him in jeopardy during periods of persecution, and he was eventually put to death in Jerusalem in 62 AD.

The gospels first mention James in Matthew 13:55 and Mark 6:3, where he is listed along with three other brothers of Jesus and some un-named sisters. According to John 7:5, James and the other brothers initially didn’t approve of Jesus’ ministry. But they did become followers later, and were members of the early community of believers who lived in Jerusalem after Jesus departed.

James and the other early believers in Jerusalem still regarded themselves as Jews. They worshiped regularly in the main Jewish Temple, and they continued to adhere to the old Jewish religious laws. Outsiders regarded them as a new Jewish sect and called them Nazarenes, a name of uncertain origin.

After Paul began to convert non-Jews to the faith, a dispute arose over whether these new converts had to follow the old Jewish religious laws, and in particular whether the males needed to be circumcised. At some point, possibly in 48 AD, Paul traveled to Jerusalem to try to resolve the issue. According to Acts 15:19, it was James who made the final decision. This was a compromise that allowed new male converts to remain uncircumcised, but required them to adhere to certain other traditional Jewish laws. The fact that James made the final decision indicates that at this time he was the highest authority in the existing Christian community.

Further evidence for the importance of his role is found in the Gospel of Thomas. According to Saying 12 of this gospel, the disciples said to Jesus:

“We are aware that you will depart from us. Who will be our leader?”

Jesus answered: “No matter where you come from, it is to James the Just that you shall go, for whose sake heaven and earth have come to exist.”

This passage indicates that Jesus designated James to take over the leadership of the community after he departed. Although the Gospel of Thomas isn’t part of the New Testament, many scholars believe that it contains some authentic sayings of Jesus.

But the overall leadership gradually shifted from James to Paul. This happened because the number of converts in other cities grew rapidly, and soon far outnumbered the members of the original group in Jerusalem. Paul founded many of the new churches and remained in contact with their members, whereas James stayed in Jerusalem and had little communication with converts in other areas. Naturally these new converts tended to look to Paul, not James, for leadership. Even so, James was still regarded as an important leader at the time of his death in 62 AD.

Some biblical scholars suspect that later Christians intentionally downplayed the role of James in the early Christian movement. Wanting to emphasize their independence from Judaism, and aware that he adhered to the old Jewish religious practices, they may have tried to minimize his importance.

The most complete description of James the Just is found in Saint Jerome’s De Viris Illustribus, which quotes from the fifth book of Hegesippus’ lost Commentaries:

After the apostles, James the brother of the Lord surnamed the Just was made head of the Church at Jerusalem. Many indeed are called James. This one was holy from his mother’s womb. He drank neither wine nor strong drink, ate no flesh, never shaved or anointed himself with ointment or bathed. He alone had the privilege of entering the Holy of Holies, since indeed he did not use woolen vestments but linen and went alone into the temple and prayed in behalf of the people, insomuch that his knees were reputed to have acquired the hardness of camels’ knees.

Although some parts of this passage may not be accurate, it does confirm the idea that James was called the Just because of his piety and ascetic lifestyle.

James died in 62 AD, apparently as a result of conflicts with the Jewish authorities in Jerusalem. According to the historian Josephus, a Jewish council condemned him “on the charge of breaking the law,” then had him executed by stoning. Josephus says that this action was very unpopular with many of the citizens of Jerusalem, and that many of them viewed it as a political murder.

Another account of James’ death was reported by Eusebius. It says that the Pharisees, upset by his teachings, threw him from the summit of the Temple, stoned him, then broke his skull with a fuller’s club.

According to church tradition, James was the author of the New Testament Epistle of James. But because this letter is written in fluent Greek, some scholars doubt that a native Aramaic speaker like James could have written it. However, other scholars contend that someone else could have helped James write it, or that it could be a translation of what he said. Supporting this opinion is the fact that the letter seems to reveal an authoritative leader based in Palestine, and many of the views expressed in it appear to differ from those of Paul. If this letter does come directly from James, it could be one of the earliest known Christian writings, and possibly the only one written by someone who knew Jesus personally.

Another ancient writing associated with James is the Secret Gospel of James, which is also called the Apocryphon of James (“apocryphon” is Greek for “secret book”). This work is called a secret gospel because it claims to contain secret revelations which Jesus made to James after the resurrection. Most scholars believe that it is a mostly fictional work written by an unknown person who used James’ name to try to give it legitimacy. Because ancient church officials doubted its authenticity, it was excluded from the New Testament.

Some Christians think that James was actually a step-brother of Jesus, or possibly only a cousin, because they believe that Mary remained a virgin throughout her life and therefore couldn’t have given birth to any children except Jesus. But Matthew, Mark, Paul, Josephus, and Hegesippus all appear to say that James was a full brother, and most modern scholars have reached the same conclusion.

In 2002 Andre Lemaire of the Sorbonne University in Paris reported that an ancient ossuary bearing the inscription Ya aqov bar Yosef akhui Yeshua (“James son of Joseph brother of Jesus”) had been discovered in Israel. An ossuary is a stone box which Jews of the New Testament period used as a storage vessel for the bones of dead relatives. Although James, Joseph, and Jesus were all common names of the period, some people believed that the inscription on this ossuary indicated that it had held the bones of James the Just. But the Israeli Antiquities Authority soon concluded that the inscription is a modern forgery. Several people were arrested, and some forgery equipment and partially completed forgeries were recovered.

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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1 Response to James A Nazarite In The Womb

  1. Reblogged this on Rosamond Press and commented:

    What if God wants another John the Bpatist to prepare the way for the secon coming of the Son of God? Paul took the vow of the Nazarite.

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