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Just James: The Brother of Jesus in History and Tradition

Author: 
John Painter (Author) D. Moody Smith (Editor)
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Description

Just James provides a fascinating treatment of Jesus' brother based on all the ancient sources: New Testament, early church fathers, Nag Hammadi codices, and other early Christian writings. Painter evaluates the importance of this towering figure of the early church whose contributions have been obscured from the consciousness of modern Christianity. The author explores James' relationship to Jesus, Mary's perpetual virginity, James' receipt of special revelations from the risen Lord, and his status as one of the first martyrs of the church.
ISBN: 
9780800631697
Price: 
$25.00
Release date: 
September 8, 1999
Pages: 
352
Width: 
6
Height: 
9

Endorsements

"This is a book for which we have been waiting. James was obviously such an important figure in the beginnings of Christianity, and yet for the most part he remains in the shadows, playing at best an ambiguous role in comparison with Peter and Paul. Painter brings him out of these shadows, scrutinizing with great care each piece of information and building up a picture which is much more positive than most have recognized. Thanks to Painter our appreciation of the tensions behind and within the New Testament will be much better informed. We are in his debt."
– James D. G. Dunn, University of Durham

"John Painter has brought to bear his considerable skills as historian, literary critic, and interpreter of ancient Christian documents to draw out of the mists a crucial figure from the beginnings of Christianity. Painter's ability to approach biblical, Christian, Gnostic, and other sectarian documents in a fresh, and sometimes surprising, fashioning has produced a significant contribution to the understanding of Christianity's earliest days, and the ways in which early traditions interpreted the Christian church's foundations. A stimulating and important book."
– Francis J. Moloney, S.D.B., Catholic University of America

Press Releases

Painter's Book Sheds Light on Brother of Jesus

Ossuary Linked to Brother of Jesus Renews Interest in James

With the recent find in Jerusalem of an ossuary, or bone box, proposed to be of James, the brother of Jesus, the recent work of John Painter can be seen as the authoritative and reliable source on this early-church figure.

Just James: The Brother of Jesus in History and Tradition (Fortress Press, 1999) provides a fascinating treatment of Jesus' brother based on all the ancient sources: New Testament, early church fathers, Nag Hammadi codices, and other early Christian writings. Painter evaluates the importance of this towering figure of the early church whose contributions have been obscured from the consciousness of modern Christianity. The author explores James' relationship to Jesus, Mary's perpetual virginity, James' receipt of special revelations from the risen Lord, and his status as one of the first martyrs of the church.

Just James is a volume in the Personalities of the New Testament series, edited by D. Moody Smith.

"This is a book for which we have been waiting. James was obviously such an important figure in the beginnings of Christianity, and yet for the most part he remains in the shadows, playing at best an ambiguous role in comparison with Peter and Paul. Painter brings him out of these shadows, scrutinizing with great care each piece of information and building up a picture which is much more positive than most have recognized. Thanks to Painter our appreciation of the tensions behind and within the New Testament will be much better informed. We are in his debt."
– JAMES D. G. DUNN, University of Durham

"John Painter has brought to bear his considerable skills as historian, literary critic, and interpreter of ancient Christian documents to draw out of the mists a crucial figure from the beginnings of Christianity. Painter's ability to approach biblical, Christian, Gnostic, and other sectarian documents in a fresh, and sometimes surprising, fashioning has produced a significant contribution to the understanding of Christianity's earliest days, and the ways in which early traditions interpreted the Christian church's foundations. A stimulating and important book."
– FRANCIS J. MOLONEY, S.D.B., Catholic University of America

Table of Contents

    Preface
    Abbreviations
    Just James: The Death of a Legend

    Part I: The Gospels, Acts, and the Letters of Paul

  1. The Gospels: James and the Family of Jesus
  2. Acts: James as Convert or Foundation Leader?
  3. The Letters of Paul: Paul and James
  4. James, Peter, Matthew, and Paul: Diversity and Conflict in the Two Missions

    Part II: Images of James in the Early Church

  5. Tradition in Eusebius: James the Just, Brother of the Lord, First Biship and Martyr
  6. The Nag Hammadi Library: James as a Successor to Jesus and Repository of Secret Tradition
  7. The Apocrypha and Later Christian Evidence: Bishop of Bishops and Bulwark of Truth
  8. Jewish Christianity, the Righteous Sufferer, and the Epistle of James

    Excursus: Robert Eisenman's James the Brother of Jesus
    Bibliography
    Index of Biblical and Ancient Sources
    Index of Modern Authors
    Index of Subjects