Jesus' Cousins

Question:

Ever since my Baptist cousin read me a passage in the NT about the Virgin Mary having more than one child I've been struggling looking for passages contradicting so. I should actually thank her because by doing so she stregnthen my faith on the Church. One of the problems with her argument was that the Bible that she used mistranslated words the passage title read something like this "Mary and Jesus' brother came to see him." Sorry I don't have a Bible in English nor I can recall passages well. The other problem was that she tried to convert me. Sorry for making this long.....

The problem that I still have with this is that in another passage the bible mentions the name of some of the disciples (Jesus' brothers) as it relates to the more or less the the "MORE THAN ONE CHILD" issue. And in another the Bible mentions different names. Can you help me?

I'll be grateful. Since for me the Virgin Mary means alot. Specially when you grow up in a Salesian Catholic school....




Answer:

In the Bible it does mention that Jesus' mother and his brothers came to see him.... At another place the people say, "we know where he is from, we know his brothers and his sisters." The thing is, that when we read Sacred Scripture we often tend to look at it from our understanding of words. This can and does get us into trouble at times. To us 'brother' and 'sister' mean from the same mother and father. In Jesus' day and age.... people called their cousins brothers and sisters.... the blood-family is what was celebrated, not the individual family.

Living in Central America you may have experienced similar situations. I know that even today in many Mexican homes many people share the same house.... brothers and sisters will still live together even after marriage and raise their children together, even the grandparents often live in the same location. They are all one family, in their eyes.

When the Bible uses the term Jesus' brothers and sister, it is in fact Jesus' cousins that are being referred to.

Thanks for your question.... I hope this helps.

God Bless,