what does the bible say?

Who is the author or the book of James?

There are three men named James in the New Testament.  James the son of Zebedee and James the son of Alphaeus were two of the original twelve disciples (Matthew 10:2-3).  Another James called the Lord’s brother (Galatians 1:18-19), was the son of Joseph and Mary. Christ had physical brothers and sisters (Matthew 13:55).  One of his brothers was named James, his other brothers were named Joses, Simon, and Jude, or Judas.

The fact that James, the brother of Jesus, was the author of The Epistle of James is held with almost complete unanimity by Biblical scholars.  Notice the Biblical proof: James the son of Zebedee (and brother of John) was beheaded by Herod Agrippa I (Acts 12:1-2) in the early 40s A.D. James the son of Alphaeus is not mentioned in Scripture after Acts 1:13. Where did he go?  Jesus sent the twelve apostles to the lost sheep of Israel (Matthew 10:5-6).  James the son of Alphaeus planted true Christianity in Spain and “these western parts,” (see William Cave’s Antiquities Apostolicae) with some authorities adding Ireland and Britain. Fulfilling Jesus’ command to go to the lost sheep of the House of Israel, he carried the Gospel into Western and Northwestern Europe.

Only one James remained behind in Judea: James, the Lord’s brother.  This James was in Jerusalem (Galatians 1:18-19; Acts 15:13-21). The Epistle of James was written by James, the brother of Christ, son of Joseph and Mary.  He was the one who wrote “to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad” (James 1:1). Jude, another brother of Jesus, wrote The Epistle of Jude after the death of his older brother James in A.D. 62.

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