NOTE: Actual size of the ossuray is 20 inches by 11 inches wide
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Not too long ago, something happened in the global arena that put the Vatican once again in the spotlight as a lying entity. Of course I am speaking of the Ossuary, or burial box of James the brother of Jesus Christ. When the story first broke, I purposely remained silent on the issue because I wanted to see what the Vatican would do about it. The only comment they made to the press at first was a feeble attempt to blow off the discovery. Anyone that has been watching the Vatican long enough knows, this happens to be the norm for Rome. They always skirt the issue and dance around it when it places a spotlight upon them and their spurious doctrines. They later solicited the help of a questionable source so as to help them appear vindicated. We will get into that a bit later.
In an interview by the Associate Press, Roman Catholic scholar Joseph Fitzmeyer, acknowledges the writing style on the ossuary 'fits perfectly' with other first century examples and admits the joint appearance of these three famous names is 'striking,' he nevertheless concludes, "But the big problem is, you have to show me the Jesus in this text is Jesus of Nazareth, and nobody can show that." Ignoring the obvious is an infamous technique of Babylon that is designed to permeate the hearts of their congregation. Sadly, this is the case, as many devoted Catholics are now echoing Fitzmeyer's strange testimonial.
Intense curiosity and controversy I might add has been at the forefront globally as far as I can tell since the announcement of the discovery of an ancient limestone bone box dated 63AD, called an ossuary, (pronounced alternatively, "osh-oo-ary" or "os-yoo-ary") inscribed in Aramaic, which was the language of the Jews in Jesus day. The inscription reads, "Ya'akov bar Ysef a khui Yeshua" which translated is, "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus." Historical fact is, boxes like this were commonly used by Jewish families between 20BC and 70AD to store the bones of their loved ones. James is known to have been martyred in 62 AD, and the box has been dated 63AD. Tradition of that day was to place the body in a tomb until the flesh disintegrated, (1 year) and then move the bones to a ossuary to await resurrection.
Another interesting fact is that out of the hundreds of such boxes that were found, only TWO mention a "brother" in the inscriptions upon the burial box. Some scholars have confirmed that this alludes to the fact that the brother must have been famous or extremely important at the time so as to be mentioned upon a burial box of a sibling. The names James, Joseph, and even Jesus were considered common names in Jerusalem for that day.
Professor Lemaire, who teaches at the Sorbonne in Paris, wrote in a recent issue of the Biblical Archaeology Review that it was "very probable" that the box belonged to Jesus Christ's brother James. In a city as large as Jerusalem was in that day (about 40,000) Lemaire estimates that as many as 20 men who were named James, would have had brothers named Jesus, and fathers named Joseph. However, he also concludes that the odds would be stacked greatly against the probability that there would be more than one person named James who had a brother that was as important or well known as Jesus was at that time. Looking back, one can see plainly that historic fact actually confirms it. All one needs do is research this and you will find that there is no mention recorded in history of a man named "Jesus" for that period of time that had anywhere near the life changing fame of Jesus the Messiah. In fact, the Biblical Archaeology Review has researched an inventory of 900 ossuaries. Out of the 900, 19 of them have the name Joseph inscribed on them, and 10 have the name Jesus on them and only ONE had the name Jesus as the son of Joseph and brother of James inscribed on it. ONLY ONE! (For more info see,"Evidence Of Jesus Written In Stone," Biblical Archaeological Review, http://www.bib-arch.org/bswb_BAR/bswbbar2806f1.html )
I have been watching this story with particular interest to see if Rome will once again ADMIT to lying before the world for the last 149 years since Pope Pius IX proclaimed, "The Immaculate Conception" of Mary was dogmatic fact. This Roman Catholic doctrine stipulates that Mary was a virgin till death, and Jesus never had any siblings. We all saw in the "Mea Culpa" of John Paul II back in March of 2000 a bevy of admissions that proved the Roman Catholic church is no stranger to fabricating lies to further its agenda. We now have concrete historic fact they admitted it in writing. Will they do right on this issue? The blunt defiance in Fitzmeyer's earlier statement paints an obvious picture of what Rome plans to do. They seek to take the defensive stance proclaiming "Your going to have to show me proof before I believe it! And as far as I can tell no one can." You would think that Fitzmeyer would use his "credentials" a bit more wisely then just shouting like a spoiled child and then stomping his feet as he flees the scene. A normal response I am sure for one caught red handed. Seriously, what other course does he have? He MUST openly deny the now concrete evidence before him so as to keep the Roman lie afloat. To do otherwise would be disasterous!
History proves that once the agenda of the Vatican is threatened, they will go to absolutely ANY lengths to assure they can keep doing business as usual. Even if it means millions must die. The world saw dozens of Bishops and Cardinals stepping forward back in March of 2000, not only agreeing with the Pope's list of admissions, but also speaking of numerous vile and disgusting acts they themselves have done as well! (for more on this, )
They did this to save face because certain facts were no longer easy to hide for the Vatican, especially since it's possible now for even some of the poorest families in the World to access the historic facts online. Families in the poorest nations have access to the Internet in libraries or Internet cafés the world over. The Vatican’s only demonically "wise" course at that time is to admit they killed millions and ask for forgiveness so as to appear to be genuinely concerned about what history so graphically records. Regardless of the fact that the Vatican is still in the business of threatening and even killing those that deny their doctrines to this day. (for more on this, ) However, with the discovery of the Ossuary of James, this is in no way an easy admission for Rome to proclaim as we saw by the knee jerking response, and hastened exit of Fitzmeyer. Their counterfeit doctrinal statements regarding Mary depend completely on them keeping that lie going. This is Babylon, and Babylon worships the "Queen of Heaven" as Scriptures so openly proclaims. To deny their Pagan god, is to deny their way of life.
For a Biblical expose' of the "Queen of Heaven" start your study with these verses...
Imagine if you will that Rome ADMITTED the Ossuary of James to be authentic. This would mean they LIED to literally billions upon billions of Catholics as well as non-Catholics since the lie was fabricated regarding the perpetual virginity of Mary. Rome knows that this is not just some face saving lie that can be shrugged off as "mere sins of the flesh" as we saw paraded before us in all it's graphic decadence on March 12, 2000 when Rome admitted to killing over 500 million souls. Rome can easily afford to admit the sins of the flesh because it affords them the natural ability to play "the priest, cardinal, bishop, or pope is only a man" card, and get away with it by asking forgiveness from their church members and the world. Asking forgiveness from those that believe, is the Christ-like thing to do. It is also a very powerful tool in the art of this ongoing religious deception. Because if you don't forgive them, you can be tagged a NON-believer, and then they again stand supreme above you even though they ADMITTED they are the ones that killed millions. It's a win win situation for Rome to admit to the mass murders. However, to admit to lying about the perpetual virginity of Mary, as well as her "immaculate conception," would cause a MASSIVE upset in the halls of Rome that anyone with an ounce of sense can tell Rome is simply not prepared to do!
Think of it!
If Rome admits the Ossuary of James is authentic, and Jesus did in fact have siblings as Matthew chapter 13 already truthfully proclaims He did, that would mean a BEVY of doctrinal issues would have to be scrapped by the Roman Church.
On more obvious note to ponder... As blessed and loved as Mary was of God. Do you honestly believe that the Almighty and ever living God of all creation would punish her with a barren womb after submitting to His perfect will without question and having His only begotten Son? Remember that it was considered a blessing to have children back then, unlike today's society with their millions of self centered flesh pleasing abortions. Some women actually murder their children to avoid getting stretch marks! Can you imagine how cold a heart must wax to do such a thing? The massive number of abortions alone prove the prophetic statement of Matthew 24:12 an absolute confirmed fulfillment! Mary in her day would never seek a barren womb like many women today. PLUS, would it not be considered sin on Mary's part to DENY Joseph's carnal desires towards his wife, in that pre-birth control pill era? Is it not written plainly in.. 1 Corinthians 7:3-5, "Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. Defraud ye not one the other, …”
Yes, it appears Rome knows it will have to admit a LOT MORE than just murdering 500 million Christians as they did on March 12, 2000. If they admit the Ossuary of James is authentic, they will have to give up quite a few doctrines of demons and traditions of men. And I don't think they are prepared to do that. A few of these spurious doctrines in a list might look like this...
They will have to admit they lied about…
If I was a betting man, AND I AM NOT, I would have to ask, who wants to lay odds on the final response of the Vatican? Will they jump at the chance to now lie again and say Joseph had children from a previous marriage? Virtually no Christian church holds to that view today. However, that never stopped Rome before has it?
By the way... To claim Joseph had a previous marriage, would mean yet another a re-write of Scripture for the church of Rome. For it is NOT written that Joseph had a previous marriage in the Word. "YET"
ROMAN CATHOLIC "EXPECTED" RESPONSE... (Found on "Catholic Answers" website) Notice how Jimmy Akin does exactly as expected. As usual the Roman Church seeks to cloud the issue regarding the word "brother" or "brethren." On my “Jesus had Siblings?” page in the RCC Doctrines section of the website I share ample proof regarding the so called perpetual virginity of Mary, as well as the smoking gun passage in Matthew 13:55,56 that proves Rome lied. (my brief comments are in BLUE below)
Bad Aramaic Made Easy
It is possible the inscription on the ossuary--"James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus"--provides us with a challenge in regard to some basic Christian assumptions about James. The Roman Catholic tradition is that Jesus' brothers and sisters actually were cousins; Orthodox Christians believe they were Joseph's children by a previous marriage. The inscription conflicts with both of those Christian traditions, in fact, for there certainly was an Aramaic word for "cousin" that could have been used in this inscription but was not. If Jesus was the son of only Mary, and James was the son of only Joseph, then Jesus and James would not literally have been brothers, as this inscription states. --"In the Name of the Brother," USA Weekend, April 13, 2003
Witherington's statement proved highly controversial. Though his characterization of Catholic teaching is not without problem, his assertion that there is an Aramaic word for cousin was egregious. (A GREE JUS) (Conspicuously bad or offensive)
The Source of the Controversy
The New Testament is explicit that Mary was a virgin at the time she conceived Jesus by the Holy Spirit. Christian tradition--later infallibly affirmed by the Church--acknowledges that she remained a virgin afterwards. The great majority of Christians acknowledges this. Only the Protestant community dissents.
The better way to explain that is to say that "Catholic tradition" is what acknowledges Mary as a virgin for life. Nowhere in the Bible does to say that. Not one solitary verse. There is not as single Christian denomination that claims she was a perpetual virgin either. Only in Catholicism do you see this. On my Mary Worship page in the RCC Exposed section of the website you can see why they teach this.
But there are certain questions to be answered, such as who the "brethren" or "brothers" of Christ mentioned in Scripture are. In English when we say "brother" we usually mean full brother--a male sibling sharing both biological parents.
Jimmy Akin uses the word "usually" to confirm his opinion? Fact is, I "usually" don't believe anyone that has no confidence in their own message. Do you? Think about it. He seeks to convince us by his lack of factual evidence. That “usually” means they have no evidence, or confidence in what they speak. I take that back, it ALWAYS means they have no evidence or confidence.
But the term has a broader range of meanings. It can include half-brother (male sibling sharing one biological parent), step-brother (male sibling sharing one parent by marriage), and adoptive brother (male sibling adopted into the family). It can be given figurative meanings, such as "comrade," as when military men are described as "a band of brothers."
No solid, or researchable proof. Just "opinions" of Jimmy Akin are used here. Nowhere does the Word or even the Ossuary intimate that any of these opinions apply.
Which applies to the brethren of Christ in Scripture?
It is unlikely that the term "brother" is being used figuratively or mystically because all Christians are Christ's brothers in that sense, making it pointless to single out certain individuals for this description. Full brother is impossible, as Protestants also acknowledge, since Jesus was not the biological child of Joseph. Half-brother is ruled out by the fact that Mary remained a virgin.
Again, a lack of confidence in his own theory is intimated when words like, “unlikely” come into play. Still, here Jimmy assumes we as Protesting Christians BELIEVE Mary remained a virgin for life, and therefore we must throw out the "half brother" assumption? That statement alone proves he is grasping at straws in a desperate manner. One would think that if Jimmy Akin had Biblical proof of that statement he would use it. As is always the case, they merely use assumptions to preach as if they have concrete evidence.
I ask Jimmy Akin... Show me one verse that says Mary was a virgin for life. Or show me one verse that shows me Joseph did NOT consummate his marriage to Mary. Or show me one verse that shows me Mary denied her husbands carnal desires for his WIFE. I know Jimmy cannot do this, however a babe in Christ would have no trouble finding the verses that do prove Mary was not a virgin for life, Joseph did consummate that marriage, and Mary did not refuse her husband’s carnal desires.
It is possible they were adoptive brothers, but there does not seem to be any evidence for this in the biblical or patristic record. More plausibly, they were step-brothers: children of Joseph who were Jesus' brothers by marriage.
Plausibly? “Possible? Jimmy Akin is still "suggesting" an opinion here, nothing more nothing less. I have yet to see any Scriptural or historic proof denying that which I laid out previously. Nor do I see Jimmy sharing any Biblical verses proving his perpetual virgin theory. Friends... NEVER accept an "opinion" when there are FACTS laid out for inspection. This is an unwise act for anyone to embrace. Would you walk into a burning building that you see totally engulfed in flame after a friend suggests it appears to them to be safe? The facts never lie. This is why Jimmy and Rome itself avoids them repeatedly.
There is some evidence for this in the writings of early Christians. The earliest discussion of the matter that we have--in a document known as the Protoevangelium of James (c. A.D. 120)--states that Joseph was a widower who already had a family and thus was willing to become the guardian of a consecrated virgin. Though not inspired, the document was written within living memory of Mary, when Christ's family was still well known, as other sources attest (e.g., second century historian Hegisippus). It may contain accurate traditions regarding the family structure.
This is all Catholic documentation (notice the LATIN title) and therefore 100% untrustworthy. Rome lied in the past, and Rome lies today. In fact, Rome admitted they lied for all its history in the pope’s Mea Culpa of March 2000. So, should we trust Roman documentation that Jimmy himself admits is uninspired? This is another tactic of Rome. If they cannot find proof in the Bible to back their doctrines, they will look for it in MAN’S WORD. According to Scripture that is an unwise act. Babylon is the house of Antichrist. For proof, for a FLASH animation, or for a hardcopy of NUMEROUS facts.
The step-brother hypothesis was the most common until St. Jerome (the turn of the fifth century), who popularized the idea that the brethren were cousins. One would not guess this from a casual reading of the New Testament, but many have tried to deduce it from statements in the New Testament.
Jimmy admits here that for 5 CENTURIES most people did not agree with his church's theory UNTIL it was "popularized." And it was a Hypothesis that was popularized. In other words, and educated GUESS was accepted as proof, and now we are expected to believe this to be the final say? Still, just because an idea is "popular" it doesn't make it right. Truth is, sex, drugs, and rock and roll are "popular."
Part of the issue turns on the meaning of the word "brother." Thus far we have been discussing the English word brother for simplicity. The Greek equivalent (adelphos) includes the same concepts in its range of meaning. But Greek also has a word for "cousin" (anepsios), which seems to have been the normal word used when referring to cousins. An advocate of the cousin hypothesis would need to explain why it wasn't used if Christ’s brethren were cousins.
Again, Jimmy is displaying no confidence at all in his own assumptions. This is well noted when he states, "which seems to have been the normal word used" in the above excerpt. My friends, when they have no proof they always use "assumptions" to try and get you to believe them. Why should we believe them when they themselves don’t believe what they say themselves? Plus, if in fact James was a cousin as Rome proclaims, and since both Aramaic and Greek do in fact have a word for cousin, I ask why wasn’t it used if in fact James was only a cousin? The bible uses the word cousin as well as the word BROTHER...
Luke 1:36, "And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren."
Mark 6:3, "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."
The standard explanation is that the New Testament isn't ordinary Greek. Some have suggested that parts of it may be translations from Aramaic. It is unknown if or how much of the New Testament had an Aramaic original, but even if none did, Aramaic had a strong influence on it. Probably all the New Testament authors except Luke were native Aramaic-speakers, and much of the dialogue in the Gospels originally occurred in Aramaic. Sometimes the Gospels even tell us the original words (e.g., “Talitha cumi” in Mark 5:41).
In the above paragraph we see Jimmy Akin using the following words...
None of which are strong words of confidence by any stretch of the imagination. ALL these words are used in the context of someone who is UNSURE of what he is surmising
This is important because the meaning of the Aramaic word for "brother" (aha) not only includes the meanings already mentioned but also includes other close relations, including cousins.
In fact, there was no word for "cousin" in Aramaic.
Here we see Jimmy speaking untruthfully. Professor Witherinton who was quoted in "USA Today" stated there is in fact an Aramaic word for cousin.
If one wanted to refer to the cousin relationship, one has to use a circumlocution such as “the son of his uncle” (brona d-`ammeh). This often is too much trouble, so broader kinship terms are used that don’t mean “cousin” in particular; e.g., ahyana ("kinsman"), qariwa ("close relation"), or nasha ("relative"). One such term is aha, which literally means “brother” but is also frequently used in the sense of “relative, kinsman.”
Again, here he is expecting his readers to believe him on mere "opinion" or "circumstantial evidence." Not one shred of provable evidence either Scriptural or historic has yet to have been used to confidently portray his message as being authentic. Not one. In my book, this is the message of a liar who seeks to hide something. Please forgive the blunt manner of which I speak. But when lie sof this magnitude are shared, one needs to address them accordingly.
Christians in Palestine, not having a word for cousin, would normally have
referred to whatever cousins Jesus had with such a general term and, in
translating their writing or speech into Greek, it is quite likely that the
Aramaic word aha would have been rendered literally with the Greek
word for brother (adelphos).
There may be as many as seven men named James mentioned in the New Testament. For our purposes the most important are:
It is the first whose ossuary may have been found. He often was called “James the Just” and was martyred in the A.D. 60s (Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 20:9). He is not the same as James son of Zebedee, who was martyred earlier (Acts 12:2). Advocates of the cousin interpretation commonly seek to identify him with James son of Alphaeus.
Here Jimmy Akin is trying to "confuse" the issue further so as to prevent truth from cutting the heart. Did you know the definition of the word "Babylon" is "to mix" truth with error? Jimmy is doing exactly as Rome has always done. Pray for him people. It is sad when it is so obvious to those of us with eyes that see what is actually being done here. He may not be able to see what he is doing. If he did, he may choose not to do it.
Engaging the Argument
In the USA Weekend piece, Witherington criticized both the step-brother and the cousin hypotheses. Regarding the former, he wrote, "If Jesus was the son of only Mary, and James was the son of only Joseph, then Jesus and James would not literally have been brothers, as this inscription states."
This argument seems flatly erroneous. The inscription does not state that Jesus and James were "literally" brothers. It says that they were brothers, period. It doesn't say "James, son of Joseph, literal brother of Jesus."
This is a common technique of Rome. They use a lie as truth. They do the same with Scriptures at every turn. When the Word of God is bluntly stating Truth, Rome will always seek a way to place a "twist" on what the Lord said so as to confuse the issue. This is actually how the method called "spin-doctoring" was invented. Seeing how they felt they were so efficient in spinning lies around truth so as to push Rome forward politically, they decided they could do the same thing with anything they needed to hide in the media of today.
Those of us that are God's children understand easily what's being said in His Word. For His children do hear His voice. Those that aren't His children, seek to look for ways around what's being said by the Lord. Case in point. Study up on how Satan has always used "what God said" in a way to make it appear He is saying something else. He has done this since the Garden of Eden.
So, since Jimmy Akin seeks a "literal" proof here. (even though it's already there for those with eyes that see) I ask. Jimmy Akin, where is the one verse that LITERALLY proves Mary was a virgin until death? Or how about the verse that LITERALLY proves Joseph never consummated the marriage? Or the one verse that LITERALLY states Mary denied Joseph's carnal desires towards his God given wife? What’s good for the goose is good for the gander I always say. So Jimmy, I ask, where is your LITERAL proof?
And what does Witherington mean by "literally"? To most ears, the most literal meaning of “brother” is full brother, all the other senses being in some sense accommodated to this primary sense. But we know that James can't be a full brother because Joseph was not Jesus' biological father. (A point that Witherington, who has written a book critical of liberal reinterpretations of Jesus, presumably acknowledges.)
Did you catch that? Jimmy Akin is now using the exact same method Bill Clinton used to define sex so as to get away with an evil act. He takes an obvious fact and twists it to generate some question in the mid of those listening to him. No matter how vague the twist may be, it’s effective for those that have no faith.
Witherington is trying to get too much out of the single word "brother" in the inscription. It's range of meaning is simply too broad to rule out James being a step-brother.
Truth is folks, Jimmy is trying to do the exact same thing with the word "cousin" here. Yet we are expected to believe him over documented facts? A man that uses words like "maybe, perhaps, could be, and possibly" to proclaim his message? We have God's Word to rely on. I say that's enough.
Even in English, which has a gigantic vocabulary that includes a term for step-brother, we tend to use just "brother." Someone making introductions is more likely to say "This is my brother" than "This is my step-brother," unless family relations are unusually icy.
Again, Jimmy Akin is using "assumptions" to preach this error. More lack of confidence from Jimmy Akin leads to one thing, and one thing only. A lack of confidence in those that hear him and his message. I praise the Lord for His Word and the factual evidence He supplies for His followers. It’s amazing how this God of ours never leaves us without evidence of His truth as does Rome leave its preachers fumbling about in the dark looking for ways to explain their doctrines.
What I truly find amazing is how Jimmy thinks he can compare a flippant statement with an etched epilog. How can anyone assume calling a step-brother “brother” in a casual manner as most people do is comparable to etching “brother” instead of “step-brother” on a bone box? Like today’s tombstones, one doesn’t find it a good idea to be inaccurate when etching in stone the final, and permanent last statement of a person’s life and or title. Epilogs are not "usually" fiction. Still, Jimmy uses this method to try and pull the onus off the fact that he has yet to share one solitary speck of viable evidence to support his vaporous theories.
Witherington dismissed the cousin hypothesis by simply asserting, "there certainly was an Aramaic word for 'cousin' that could have been used in this inscription but was not." For this argument to work, several premises have to be granted:
Fact is, the word "BROTHER" was used on the ossuary, and Jimmy Akin is trying to make us all believe it should have been "COUSIN." The easy and blunt thing to notice here is. THE WORD COUSIN IS NOT ON THAT BOX.
If you want to see the rest of the article, click the URL below. But understand this. Jimmy Akin merely repeats assumptions, lies, and twists facts as he has done here. I believe I made that crystal clear by simply using common sense. Plus, nowhere does Jimmy Akin prove his side of the story as did the actual Scientists that authenticated the box, or the historians that verified the words, or the preachers that shared the Scriptures that tied the two together.
I will share one more tidbit from Jimmy Akin's article. He said, regarding Witherington's facts...
"Witherington behaved irresponsibly by asserting in popular print that there is such a word. In so doing he misled people of multiple religious persuasions, disturbed the faith of some, confused others, and sparked a round of needless arguments."
Jimmy... You just did exactly what you accused Witherington of doing with the word "cousin." And we now have it in POPULAR PRINT as well.