Patrick’s Classic on the Historical James

William Patrick, James the Lord’s Brother. Edinburgh:T&T Clark, 1906.

This classic work on the historical James the Just is available at the Internet Archive as a 35MB PDF! I’ve only had time to peruse this work in the past. I’ve had other pressing matters to deal with, but I have planned to scan this work post-thesis, but now I don’t have to. I hope to OCR the text and make it a part of the Old in the New site in html.

Update: A rough OCR version is now available HERE.

Patrick’s James the Lord’s Brother – rough draft in HTML

Previously I posted on finding a PDF scan of William Patrick’s James the Lord’s Brother (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1906) on the Internet Archive (see previous post). The work is still available as a 35MB PDF, but I have done a rough scan and edit of the work into HTML (AVAILABLE HERE).

This is a very rough scan. I have not proofread it, and the formatting of verse references used in the original text did not scan well (as of now there is no dividing punctuation between all chapter and verse numbers). This draft has other formatting issues with italics, etc. So, be sure to check this scan against the PDF. Also, the Scripture and subject indexes are neither formatted nor proofread.

I’ve assigned “anchors” to all page numbers, so if you’re interested in citing a particular page in this document, just add # followed immediately by the page number in the document url. Example: will take you to pg. 98 (Ch. 5 on “The Epistle of James”).

Again, for the sake of any Luddites, here are a few links for obtaining a paper copy of Patrick’s work: Open WorldCat / Amazon / / Bookfinder

*After looking around a bit, I also found F. J. A. Hort’s Judaistic Christianity (London: Macmillan, 1894) on the internet archives. Perhaps I will be able to OCR scan this and make it available as well.

J. B. Lightfoot’s essay, “The Brethren of the Lord”

J. B. Lightfoot wrote a seminal essay titled “The Brethren of the Lord” in his 19th c. commentary on Galatians. The text of this valuable writing is available at This essay contains an excellent summary of the various options regarding the familial relationship between Jesus and his brothers (including James). It discusses the early evidence, including the opinions of the Church Fathers. For the most part, the scanned text looks great, but the Greek text does not display correctly. Check it out here:

“James the Just in History and Tradition” in Currents in Biblical Research

The latest edition of Currents in Biblical Research contains the first of a two part article on James the Just:

Matti Myllykoski, “James the Just in History and Tradition: Perspectives of Past and Present Scholarship (Part I)” Currents in Biblical Research 5 (2006): 73-122.

The article is available online with a subscription. I look forward to reading it. The abstract is as follows:

James the Just, the brother of Jesus, is known from the New Testament as the chief apostle of the Torah-obedient Christians. Up to the last quarter of the twentieth century, Jewish Christianity was regarded as an unimportant branch of the early Christian movement. Correspondingly, there was remarkably little interest in James. However, in the past two decades, while early Christianity has been studied as a form of Judaism, the literature on James has grown considerably. Now some scholars tend to assume that James was a loyal follower of his brother right from the beginning, and that his leadership in the church was stronger than traditionally has been assumed. Fresh studies on Acts 15 and Galatians 2 have opened new questions about the Christian Judaism of James and social formation of the community which he led. Part II of this article, to be published in a later issue of Currents, will treat the rest of the James tradition—James’s ritual purity, martyrdom and succession, and his role in the Gnostic writings and later Christian evidence. It will conclude with reflections concerning James and earliest Jewish-Christian theology.

The Testamonium Flavianum at

Ben C. Smith of TextExcavation has a helpful presentation of the Testimonium Flavianum, the account of Josephus that mentions Jesus and James the Just. The page has the pertinent texts with translation (see below) along with the parallel texts and translations from Eusebius, Origen, Jerome and others. Here’s a sample – Josephus’ description of James’ martyrdom (Antiquities 20.9.1 §200-203):

Ατε δη ουν τοιουτος ων ο Ανανος, νομισας εχειν καιρον επιτηδειον δια το τεθναναι μεν Φηστον, Αλβινον δ ετι κατα την οδον υπαρχειν, καθιζει συνεδριον κριτων και παραγαγων εις αυτο τον αδελφον Ιησου του λεγομενου Χριστου, Ιακωβος ονομα αυτω, και τινας ετερους, ως παρανομησαντων κατηγοριαν ποιησαμενος παρκεστατοι των κατα την πολιν ειναι και περι τους νομους ακριβεις βαρεως ηνεγκαν επι τουτω και πεμπουσιν προς τον βασιλεα κρυφα παρακαλουντες αυτον επιστειλαι τω Ανανω μηκετι τοιαυτα πρασσειν· μηδε γαρ το πρωτον ορθως αυτον πεποιηκεναι. τινες δ αυτων και τον Αλβινον υπαντιαζουσιν απο της Αλεξανδρειας οδοιπορουντα και διδασκουσιν, ως ουκ εξον ην Ανανω χωρις της εκεινου γνωμης καθισαι συνεδριον. Αλβινος δε πεισθεις τοις λεγομενοις γραφει μετ οργης τω Ανανω ληψεσθαι παρ αυτου δικας απειλων. και ο βασιλευς Αγριππας δια τουτο την αρχιερωσυνην αφελομενος αυτον αρξαντα μηνας τρεις Ιησουν τον του Δαμναιου κατεστησεν. When, therefore, Ananus was of this disposition, he thought he had now a proper opportunity. Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the Sanhedrin of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others. And, when he had formed an accusation against them as breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned. But as for those who seemed the most equitable of the citizens, and such as were the most uneasy at the breach of the laws, they disliked what was done; they also sent to the king, desiring him to send to Ananus that he should act so no more, for that what he had already done was not to be justified; nay, some of them went also to meet Albinus, as he was upon his journey from Alexandria, and informed him that it was not lawful for Ananus to assemble a Sanhedrin without his consent. Whereupon Albinus complied with what they said, and wrote in anger to Ananus, and threatened that he would bring him to punishment for what he had done; on which king Agrippa took the high priesthood from him when he had ruled but three months, and made Jesus, the son of Damneus, high priest.

TextExcavation also has helpful information on the Jewish gospels, including the gospel according to the Hebrews. This is a great site.

Epiphanius, Panarion, Heresies 78.14.1

Epiphanius characterizes James as a high priest. On one occasion, he describes James’ prayer for rain in a way that evokes James 5:17-18, and James’ description of Elijah’s prayer for drought and for rain.

Οὗτος ὁ Ἰάκωβος καὶ πέταλον ἐπὶ τῆς κεφαλῆς ἐφόρεσε· καὶ ποτὲ ἀβροχίας γενομένης ἐπῆρε τὰς χεῖρας εἰς οὐρανὸν καὶ προσηύξατο, καὶ εὐθὺς ὁ οὐρανὸς ἔδωκεν ὑετόν.

See his Panarion, Heresies 78.14.1.

See Theodor Zahn (p. 265), who notes that the passage is reminiscent of Jas 5:17 ff., and compares the incident briefly to Nakdimon’s prayer for rain in b.Taanith 19b-20a:

Mitten in der in allem Wesentlichen nach Heg. Wiedererzählten Geschichte des Jk findet sich auch die Erzählung von einem Gebet des Jk um lange ersehnten Regen, das Erhörung gefunden habe. 2) Die kurze Geschichte trägt Lokalfarbe. Sie paßt vorzüglich zu der Schilderung des beständig für sein ganzes Volk betenden Jakobus bei Heg. (oben S. 230). Daß sie ein jüngerer, etwa aus Jk 5,17f. erwachsener Mythus sein sollte, ist weniger wahrscheinlich, als daß sie zu den alten Traditionen von Jerusalem gehört, deren heg.

2) Haer. 78,14 καὶ ποτὲ ἀβροχίας γενομένης ἐπῆρε τὰς χεῖρας εἰς οὐρανὸν καὶ προσηύξατο, καὶ εὐθὺς ὁ οὐρανὸς ἔδωκεν ὑετόν. Der letzte Satz erinnert stark an Jk 5,18; auch ist zu bedenken, daß Jk 5,16 von δέησις δικαίου die Rede ist, und daß Jk ὁ δίκαιος hieß. — Im Talmud Thaanith 20 wird Ähnliches von Nakdimon = Nikodemus (Jo 3, 1) erzählt.

Theodor Zahn, “Brüder und Vettern Jesu.” Forschungen zur Geschichte des neutestamentlichen Kanons und der altkirchlichen Literatur 4 (1900): 225–364.

See also Pratscher, Herrenbruder, 1994.

Die große Frömmigkeit des Jakobus zeigt sich auch bei seinem Tod: er habe das ihm zugefügte Unrecht nicht als Beleidigung empfunden, sondern noch in der letzten Stunde deines Lebens für seine Peiniger gebetet (); seine Frömmigkeit ist so groß, daß es bei einer Dürre auf sein Gebet hin sofort zu regnen began (Pan LXXVIII 14,1). Es wird sich kaum entscheiden lassen, ob dieses letzte Motiv alter Tradition entstammt [n33] oder aus Jak 5,17f. herausgesponnen ist. Selbst wenn ersteres der Fall sein sollte, so identifiziert sich Epiphanius auf jeden Fall mit dieser Aussage und sagt dennoch nichts, was vom großkirchlichen Standpunkt aus nicht über Jakobus gesagt werden könnte.

Note that n33 refers to Zahn, Theodor: “Brüder und Vettern Jesu,” pg 265 in particular.

Attention should be paid to the tradition surrounding Honi the Circle Drawer & his prayers for rain (described by Josephus [Ant. §14, 2.1.22] and in Rabbinic Literature). See in particular Adolph Büchler, “Ḥoni the Ḥasid and his prayer for rain” Types of Jewish-Palestinian Piety from 70 B.C.E. to 70 C.E.: The Ancient Pious Men (New York: KTAV, 1968), 196-264.

See Josephus’ account below:

Now there was one, whose name was Onias, a righteous man be was, and beloved of God, who, in a certain drought, had prayed to God to put an end to the intense heat, and whose prayers God had heard, and had sent them rain. This man had hid himself, because he saw that this sedition would last a great while. However, they brought him to the Jewish camp, and desired, that as by his prayers he had once put an end to the drought, so he would in like manner make imprecations on Aristobulus and those of his faction. ᾽Ονίαν δέ τινα ὄνομα δίκαιον ὄντα καὶ θεοφιλῆ ὃς ἀνομβρίας ποτὲ οὔσης ηὔξατο τῷ θεῷ λῦσαι τὸν αὐχμὸν καὶ γενόμενος ἐπήκοος ὁ θεὸς ὗσεν κρύψαντα ἑαυτὸν διὰ τὸ τὴν στάσιν ὁρᾶν ἰσχυρὰν ἐπιμένουσαν ἀναχθέντα εἰς τὸ στρατόπεδον τῶν ᾽Ιουδαίων ἠξίουν ὡς ἔπαυσε τὴν ἀνομβρίαν εὐξάμενος ἵν᾽ οὕτως ἀρὰς θῇ κατὰ ᾽Αριστοβούλου καὶ τῶν συστασιαστῶν αὐτοῦ