Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers: Series II/Volume I/Church History of Eusebius/Book II/Chapter 23
|←Chapter 22||Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers: Series II/Volume I/Church History of Eusebius/Book II
Chapter XXIII.—The Martyrdom of James, who was called the Brother of the Lord.
1. But after Paul, in consequence of his appeal to Cæsar, had been sent to Rome by Festus, the Jews, being frustrated in their hope of entrapping him by the snares which they had laid for him, turned against James, the brother of the Lord, to whom the episcopal seat at Jerusalem had been entrusted by the apostles. The following daring measures were undertaken by them against him.
2. Leading him into their midst they demanded of him that he should renounce faith in Christ in the presence of all the people. But, contrary to the opinion of all, with a clear voice, and with greater boldness than they had anticipated, he spoke out before the whole multitude and confessed that our Saviour and Lord Jesus is the Son of God. But they were unable to bear longer the testimony of the man who, on account of the excellence of ascetic virtue and of piety which he exhibited in his life, was esteemed by all as the most just of men, and consequently they slew him. Opportunity for this deed of violence was furnished by the prevailing anarchy, which was caused by the fact that Festus had died just at this time in Judea, and that the province was thus without a governor and head.
3. The manner of James’ death has been already indicated by the above-quoted words of Clement, who records that he was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and was beaten to death with a club. But Hegesippus, who lived immediately after the apostles, gives the most accurate account in the fifth book of his Memoirs. He writes as follows:
4. “James, the brother of the Lord, succeeded to the government of the Church in conjunction with the apostles. He has been called the Just by all from the time of our Saviour to the present day; for there were many that bore the name of James.
5. He was holy from his mother’s womb; and he drank no wine nor strong drink, nor did he eat flesh. No razor came upon his head; he did not anoint himself with oil, and he did not use the bath.
6. He alone was permitted to enter into the holy place; for he wore not woolen but linen garments. And he was in the habit of entering alone into the temple, and was frequently found upon his knees begging forgiveness for the people, so that his knees became hard like those of a camel, in consequence of his constantly bending them in his worship of God, and asking forgiveness for the people.
7. Because of his exceeding great justice he was called the Just, and Oblias, which signifies in Greek, ‘Bulwark of the people’ and ‘Justice,’ in accordance with what the prophets declare concerning him.
8. Now some of the seven sects, which existed among the people and which have been mentioned by me in the Memoirs, asked him, ‘What is the gate of Jesus?’ and he replied that he was the Saviour.
9. On account of these words some believed that Jesus is the Christ. But the sects mentioned above did not believe either in a resurrection or in one’s coming to give to every man according to his works. But as many as believed did so on account of James.
10. Therefore when many even of the rulers believed, there was a commotion among the Jews and Scribes and Pharisees, who said that there was danger that the whole people would be looking for Jesus as the Christ. Coming therefore in a body to James they said, ‘We entreat thee, restrain the people; for they are gone astray in regard to Jesus, as if he were the Christ. We entreat thee to persuade all that have come to the feast of the Passover concerning Jesus; for we all have confidence in thee. For we bear thee witness, as do all the people, that thou art just, and dost not respect persons.
11. Do thou therefore persuade the multitude not to be led astray concerning Jesus. For the whole people, and all of us also, have confidence in thee. Stand therefore upon the pinnacle of the temple, that from that high position thou mayest be clearly seen, and that thy words may be readily heard by all the people. For all the tribes, with the Gentiles also, are come together on account of the Passover.’
12. The aforesaid Scribes and Pharisees therefore placed James upon the pinnacle of the temple, and cried out to him and said: ‘Thou just one, in whom we ought all to have confidence, forasmuch as the people are led astray after Jesus, the crucified one, declare to us, what is the gate of Jesus.’
13. And he answered with a loud voice, ‘Why do ye ask me concerning Jesus, the Son of Man? He himself sitteth in heaven at the right hand of the great Power, and is about to come upon the clouds of heaven.’
14. And when many were fully convinced and gloried in the testimony of James, and said, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David,’ these same Scribes and Pharisees said again to one another, ‘We have done badly in supplying such testimony to Jesus. But let us go up and throw him down, in order that they may be afraid to believe him.’
15. And they cried out, saying, ‘Oh! oh! the just man is also in error.’ And they fulfilled the Scripture written in Isaiah, ‘Let us take away the just man, because he is troublesome to us: therefore they shall eat the fruit of their doings.’
16. So they went up and threw down the just man, and said to each other, ‘Let us stone James the Just.’ And they began to stone him, for he was not killed by the fall; but he turned and knelt down and said, ‘I entreat thee, Lord God our Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.’
17. And while they were thus stoning him one of the priests of the sons of Rechab, the son of the Rechabites, who are mentioned by Jeremiah the prophet, cried out, saying, ‘Cease, what do ye? The just one prayeth for you.’
18. And one of them, who was a fuller, took the club with which he beat out clothes and struck the just man on the head. And thus he suffered martyrdom. And they buried him on the spot, by the temple, and his monument still remains by the temple. He became a true witness, both to Jews and Greeks, that Jesus is the Christ. And immediately Vespasian besieged them.”
19. These things are related at length by Hegesippus, who is in agreement with Clement. James was so admirable a man and so celebrated among all for his justice, that the more sensible even of the Jews were of the opinion that this was the cause of the siege of Jerusalem, which happened to them immediately after his martyrdom for no other reason than their daring act against him.
20. Josephus, at least, has not hesitated to testify this in his writings, where he says, “These things happened to the Jews to avenge James the Just, who was a brother of Jesus, that is called the Christ. For the Jews slew him, although he was a most just man.”
21. And the same writer records his death also in the twentieth book of his Antiquities in the following words: “But the emperor, when he learned of the death of Festus, sent Albinus to be procurator of Judea. But the younger Ananus, who, as we have already said, had obtained the high priesthood, was of an exceedingly bold and reckless disposition. He belonged, moreover, to the sect of the Sadducees, who are the most cruel of all the Jews in the execution of judgment, as we have already shown.
22. Ananus, therefore, being of this character, and supposing that he had a favorable opportunity on account of the fact that Festus was dead, and Albinus was still on the way, called together the Sanhedrim, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, the so-called Christ, James by name, together with some others, and accused them of violating the law, and condemned them to be stoned.
23. But those in the city who seemed most moderate and skilled in the law were very angry at this, and sent secretly to the king, requesting him to order Ananus to cease such proceedings. For he had not done right even this first time. And certain of them also went to meet Albinus, who was journeying from Alexandria, and reminded him that it was not lawful for Ananus to summon the Sanhedrim without his knowledge.
24. And Albinus, being persuaded by their representations, wrote in anger to Ananus, threatening him with punishment. And the king, Agrippa, in consequence, deprived him of the high priesthood, which he had held three months, and appointed Jesus, the son of Damnæus.”
25. These things are recorded in regard to James, who is said to be the author of the first of the so-called catholic epistles. But it is to be observed that it is disputed; at least, not many of the ancients have mentioned it, as is the case likewise with the epistle that bears the name of Jude, which is also one of the seven so-called catholic epistles. Nevertheless we know that these also, with the rest, have been read publicly in very many churches.
- See above, Bk. I. chap. 12, note 14.
- See above, chap. 1, note 11.
- φιλοσοφίας. See Bk. VI. chap. 3, note 9.
- See the preceding chapter, note 1, and below, note 40.
- See chap. 1, above.
- On Hegesippus, see Bk. IV. chap. 22.
- As the Memoirs of Hegesippus consisted of but five books, this account of James occurred in the last book, and this shows how entirely lacking the work was in all chronological arrangement (cf. Book IV. chap. 22). This fragment is given by Routh, Rel. Sac. I. p. 208 sqq., with a valuable discussion on p. 228 sqq.
- μετὰ τῶν ἀποστόλων, “with the apostles”; as Rufinus rightly translates, cum apostolis. Jerome, on the contrary, reads post apostolos, “after the apostles,” as if the Greek were μετὰ τοὺς ἀποστόλους. This statement of Hegesippus is correct. James was a leader of the Jerusalem church, in company with Peter and John, as we see from Gal. ii. 9. But that is quite different from saying, as Eusebius does just above, and as Clement (quoted by Eusebius, chap. 1, §3) does, that he was appointed Bishop of Jerusalem by the apostles. See chap. 1, note 11.
- See chap. 1, note 6.
- “The dramatic account of James by Hegesippus is an overdrawn picture from the middle of the second century, colored by Judaizing traits which may have been derived from the Ascents of James, and other Apocryphal sources. He turns James into a Jewish priest and Nazarite saint (cf. his advice to Paul, Acts xxi. 23, 24), who drank no wine, ate no flesh, never shaved nor took a bath, and wore only linen. But the Biblical James is Pharisaic and legalistic, rather than Essenic and ascetic” (Schaff, Ch. Hist. I. p. 268). For Peter’s asceticism, see the Clementine Recognitions, VII. 6; and for Matthew’s, see Clement of Alexandria’s Pædagogus, II. 1.
- ᾽Ωβλίας: probably a corruption of the Heb. אֹפֶל עַם, which signifies “bulwark of the people.” The same name is given to James by Epiphanius, by Dionysius the Areopagite, and others. See Suicer, Thesaurus Ecclesiasticus, s.v.
- περιοχὴ τοῦ λαοῦ καὶ δικαιοσύνη
- To what Hegesippus refers I do not know, as there is no passage in the prophets which can be interpreted in this way. He may have been thinking of the passage from Isaiah quoted in §15, below, but the reference is certainly very much strained.
- See Bk. IV. chap. 22.
- For a discussion of this very difficult question, whose interpretation has puzzled all commentators, see Routh Rel. Sac. I. p. 434 sq., and Heinichen’s Mel. IV., in his edition of Eusebius, Vol. III., p. 654 sqq. The explanation given by Grabe (in his Spic. PP. p. 254), seems to me the best. According to him, the Jews wish to ascertain James’ opinion in regard to Christ, whether he considers him a true guide or an impostor, and therefore they ask, “What (of what sort) is the gate (or the way) of Christ? Is it a gate which opens into life (or a way which leads to life); or is it a gate which opens upon death (or a way which leads to death)?” Cf. Matt. vii. 13, 14, where the two ways and the two gates are compared. The Jews had undoubtedly often heard Christ called “the Way,” and thus they might naturally use the expression in asking James’ opinion about Jesus, “Is he the true or the false way?” or, “Is this way true or false?” The answer of James which follows is then perfectly consistent: “He is the Saviour,” in which words he expresses as decidedly as he can his belief that the way or the gate of Christ led to salvation. And so below, in §12, where he gives a second answer to the question, expressing his belief in Christ still more emphatically. This is somewhat similar to the explanation of Heinichen (ibid. p. 659 sq.), who construes the genitive ᾽Ιησοῦ as in virtual apposition to θύρα: “What is this way, Jesus?” But Grabe seems to bring out most clearly the true meaning of the question.
- Rufinus translates non crediderunt neque surrexisse eum, &c., and he is followed by Fabricius (Cod. Apoc. N. T. II. p. 603). This rendering suits the context excellently, and seems to be the only rendering which gives any meaning to the following sentence. And yet, as our Greek stands, it is impossible to translate thus, as both ἀν€στασιν and ἐρχόμενον are left entirely indefinite. The Greek runs, οὐκ ἐπίστευον ἀν€στασιν, οὐτε ἐρχόμενον ἀποδοῦναι, κ.τ.λ. Cf. the notes of Valesius and of Heinichen on this passage. Of these seven sects, so far as we know, only one, the Sadducees, disbelieved in the resurrection from the dead. If Hegesippus’ words, therefore, be understood of a general resurrection, he is certainly in error.
- This sentence sufficiently reveals the legendary character of Hegesippus’ account. James’ position as a Christian must have been well enough known to prevent such a request being made to him in good faith (and there is no sign that it was made in any other spirit); and at any rate, after his reply to them already recorded, such a repetition of the question in public is absurd. Fabricius, who does not think the account is true, says that, if it is, the Jews seem to have asked him a second time, thinking that they could either flatter or frighten him into denying Christ.
- Cf. Matt. xxii. 16.
- ἐπὶ τὸ πτερύνιον τοῦ ναοῦ. Some mss. read τοῦ ἱεροῦ, and in the preceding paragraph that phrase occurs, which is identical with the phrase used in Matt. iv. 5, where the devil places Christ on a pinnacle of the temple. ἱερός is the general name for the temple buildings as a whole, while ναός is a specific name for the temple proper.
- Some mss., with Rufinus and the editions of Valesius and Heinichen, add σταυρωθέντος, “who was crucified,” and Stroth, Closs, and Crusé follow this reading in their translations. But many of the best mss. omit the words, as do also Nicephorus, Burton, Routh, Schwegler, Laemmer, and Stigloher, and I prefer to follow their example, as the words seem to be an addition from the previous line.
- Cf. Matt. xxvi. 64 and Mark xiv. 62
- Isa. iii. 10. Jess (p. 50) says, “Auch darin ist Hegesipp nur ein Kind seiner Zeit, dass er in ausgedehntem Masse im Alten Testamente Weissagungen auffindet. Aber mit Bezug darauf darf man nicht vergessen,—dass dergleichen mehr oratorische Benutzung als exegetische Erklärungen sein sollen.” Cf. the writer’s Dialogue between a Christian and a Jew (Papiscus and Philo), chap. 1.
- ἄρωμεν. The LXX, as we have it to-day, reads δήσωμεν, but Justin Martyr’s Dial., chap. 136, reads ἄρωμεν (though in chaps. 17 and 133 it reads δήσωμεν). Tertullian also in his Adv. Marc. Bk. III. chap. 22, shows that he read ἄρωμεν, for he translates auferamus.
- Κύριε θεὲ π€τερ.
- Luke xxiii. 34.
- ῾Ραχαβείμ, which is simply the reproduction in Greek letters of the Hebrew plural, and is equivalent to “the Rechabites.” But Hegesippus uses it without any article as if it were the name of an individual, just as he uses the name ῾Ρηχ€β which immediately precedes. The Rechabites were a tribe who took their origin from Jehonadab, the son of Rechab, who appears from 1 Chron. ii. 55 to have belonged to a branch of the Kenites, the Arabian tribe which came into Palestine with the Israelites. Jehonadab enjoined upon his descendants a nomadic and ascetic mode of life, which they observed with great strictness for centuries, and received a blessing from God on account of their steadfastness (Jer. xxxv. 19). That a Rechabite, who did not belong to the tribe of Judah, nor even to the genuine people of Israel, should have been a priest seems at first sight inexplicable. Different solutions have been offered. Some think that Hegesippus was mistaken,—the source from which he took his account having confounded this ascetic Rechabite with a priest,—but this is hardly probable. Plumptre, in Smith’s Bib. Dict. art. Rechabites (which see for a full account of the tribe), thinks that the blessing pronounced upon them by God (Jer. xxxv. 19) included their solemn adoption among the people of Israel, and their incorporation into the tribe of Levi, and therefore into the number of the priests. Others (e.g. Tillemont, H. E. I. p. 633) have supposed that many Jews, including also priests, embraced the practices and the institutions of the Rechabites and were therefore identified with them. The language here, however, seems to imply a native Rechabite, and it is probable that Hegesippus at least believed this person to be such, whether his belief was correct or not. See Routh, I. p. 243 sq.
- See Jer. xxxv
- In Epiphanius, Hær. LXXVIII. 14, these words are put into the mouth of Simeon, the son of Clopas; from which some have concluded that Simeon had joined the order of the Rechabites; but there is no ground for such an assumption. The Simeon of Epiphanius and the Rechabite of Hegesippus are not necessarily identical. They represent simply varieties of the original account, and Epiphanius’, as the more exact, was undoubtedly the later tradition, and an intentional improvement upon the vagueness of the original.
- Clement (in chap. 5, §4, above), who undoubtedly used the account of Hegesippus as his source, describes the death of James as taking place in the same way, but omits the stoning which preceded. Josephus, on the other hand (quoted below), mentions only the stoning. But Hegesippus’ account, which is the fullest that we have gives us the means of reconciling the briefer accounts of Clement and of Josephus, and we have no reason to think either account incorrect.
- Valesius remarks that the monument (στήλη) could not have stood through the destruction of Jerusalem until the time of Hegesippus, nor could James have been buried near the temple, as the Jews always buried their dead without the city walls. Tillemont attempted to meet the difficulty by supposing that James was thrown from a pinnacle of the temple overlooking the Valley of Jehoshaphat, and therefore fell without the walls, where he was stoned and buried, and where his monument could remain undisturbed. Tillemont however, afterward withdrew his explanation, which was beset with difficulties. Others have supposed that the monument mentioned by Hegesippus was erected after the destruction of Jerusalem (cf. Jerome, de vir. ill. 2), while his body was buried in another place. This is quite possible, as Hegesippus must have seen some monument of James which was reported to have been the original one but which must certainly have been of later date. A monument, which is now commonly known as the tomb of St. James, is shown upon the east side of the Valley of Jehoshaphat, and therefore at a considerable distance from the temple. See Routh, Rel. Sac. I. p. 246 sqq.
- See below, note 40.
- See above, chap. I. §4. His agreement with Clement is not very surprising, inasmuch as the latter probably drew his knowledge from the account of the former.
- This passage is not found in our existing mss. of Josephus, but is given by Origen (Contra Celsum, I. 47), which shows at any rate that Eusebius did not invent the words. It is probable therefore, that the copies of Josephus used by Origen and Eusebius contained this interpolation, while the copies from which our existing mss. drew were without it. It is of course possible, especially since he does not mention the reference in Josephus, that Eusebius quoted these words from Origen. But this does not help matters any, as it still remains as difficult to account for the occurrence of the words in Origen, and even if Eusebius did take the passage from Origen instead of from Josephus himself, we still have no right with Jachmann (ib. p. 40) to accuse him of wilful deception. For with his great confidence in Origen, and his unbounded admiration for him, and with his naturally uncritical spirit, he would readily accept as true in all good faith a quotation given by Origen and purporting to be taken from Josephus, even though he could not find it in his own copy of the latter’s works.
- Ant.XX. 9. 1.
- Albinus succeeded Festus in 61 or 62 a.d. He was a very corrupt governor and was in turn succeeded by Gessius Florus in 64 a.d. See Wieseler, Chron. d. Ap. Zeitalters, p. 89.
- Ananus was the fifth son of the high priest Annas mentioned in the N.T. His father and his four brothers had been high priests before him, as Josephus tells us in this same paragraph. He was appointed high priest by Agrippa II. in 61 or 62 a.d., and held the office but three months.
- Ananus’ accession is recorded by Josephus in a sentence immediately preceding, which Eusebius, who abridges Josephus’ account somewhat, has omitted in this quotation.
- I can find no previous mention in Josephus of the hardness of the Sadducees; but see Reland’s note upon this passage in Josephus. It may be that we have lost a part of the account of the Sadducees and Pharisees.
- καὶ παραγαγὼν εἰς αὐτὸ [τὸν ἀδελφὸν ᾽Ιησοῦ τοῦ χριστοῦ λεγομένου, ᾽Ι€κωβος ὄνομα αὐτῷ, καί] τινας [ἑτέρους], κ.τ.λ. Some critics regard the bracketed words as spurious, but Neander, Gesch. der Pflanzung und Leitung der Christlichen Kirche, 5th ed., p. 445, note, contends for their genuineness, and this is now the common opinion of critics. It is in fact very difficult to suppose that a Christian in interpolating the passage, would have referred to James as the brother of the “so-called Christ.” On the other hand, as the words stand there is no good reason to doubt their genuineness.
- The date of the martyrdom of James, given here by Josephus, is 61 or 62 a.d. (at the time of the Passover, according to Hegesippus, §10, above). There is no reason for doubting this date which is given with such exactness by Josephus, and it is further confirmed by Eusebius in his Chron., who puts James’s martyrdom in the seventh year of Nero, i.e. 61 a.d., while Jerome puts it in the eighth year of Nero. The Clementines and the Chronicon Paschale, which state that James survived Peter, and are therefore cited in support of a later date, are too late to be of any weight over against such an exact statement as that of Josephus, especially since Peter and James died at such a distance from one another. Hegesippus has been cited over and over again by historians as assigning the date of the martyrdom to 69 a.d., and as thus being in direct conflict with Josephus; as a consequence some follow his supposed date, others that of Josephus. But I can find no reason for asserting that Hegesippus assigns the martyrdom to 69. Certainly his words in this chapter, which are referred to, by no means necessitate such an assumption. He concludes his account with the words καὶ εὐθὺς Οὐεσπασιανὸς πολιορκεῖ αὐτούς. The πολιορκεῖ αὐτούς is certainly to be referred to the commencement of the war (not to the siege of the city of Jerusalem, which was undertaken by Titus, not by Vespasian), i.e. to the year 67 a.d., and in such an account as this, in which the overthrow of the Jews is designedly presented in connection with the death of James, it is hyper-criticism to insist that the word εὐθύς must indicate a space of time of only a few months’ duration. It is a very indefinite word, and the most we can draw from Hegesippus’ account is that not long before Vespasian’s invasion of Judea, James was slain. The same may be said in regard to Eusebius’ report in Bk. III. chap. 11, §1, which certainly is not definite enough to be cited as a contradiction of his express statement in his Chronicle. But however it may be with this report and that of Hegesippus, the date given by Josephus is undoubtedly to be accepted as correct.
- Agrippa II.
- ὡς οὐκ ἐξὸν ἦν ᾽Αν€νῳ χωρὶς τῆς αὐτοῦ γνώμης καθίσαι συνέδριον. Jost reads ἐκείνου (referring to Agrippa) instead of αὐτοῦ (referring to Albinus), and consequently draws the conclusion that the Sanhedrim could be called only with the consent of Agrippa, and that therefore Ananus had acted contrary to the rights of Agrippa, but not contrary to the rights of Albinus. But the reading αὐτοῦ is supported by overwhelming ms. authority and must be regarded as undoubtedly correct. Jost’s conclusion, therefore, which his acceptance of the ἐκείνου forced upon him, is quite incorrect. The passage appears to imply that the Sanhedrim could be called only with the consent of the procurator, and it has been so interpreted; but as Schürer points out (Gesch. der Juden im Zeitalter Jesu Christi, p. 169 sq.) this conclusion is incorrect and all that the passage implies is that the Sanhedrim could not hold a sovereign process, that is, could not meet for the purpose of passing sentence of death and executing the sentence, during the absence or without the consent of the procurator. For the transaction of ordinary business the consent of the procurator was not necessary. Compare the Commentaries on John xviii. 31, and the remarks of Schürer in the passage referred to above.
- Agrippa, as remarked above, chap. 19, note 4 exercised government over the temple, and enjoyed the power of appointing and removing the high priests.
- Of Jesus, the son of Damnæus, nothing further is known. He was succeeded, while Albinus was still procurator, by Jesus, the son of Gamaliel (Ant. XX. 9. 4).
- This term was applied to all or a part of these seven epistles by the Alexandrian Clement, Origen, and Dionysius, and since the time of Eusebius has been the common designation. The word is used in the sense of “general,” to denote that the epistles are encyclical letters addressed to no particular persons or congregations, though this is not true of II. and III. John, which, however, are classed with the others on account of their supposed Johannine authorship, and consequent close connection with his first epistle. The word was not first used, as some have held, in the sense of “canonical,” to denote the catholic or general acceptance of the epistle,—a meaning which Eusebius contradicts in this very passage, and which the history of the epistles themselves (five of the seven being among the antilegomena) sufficiently refutes. See Holtzmann’s Einleitung, p. 472 sqq., and Weiss, ibid. p. 89 sqq.
- νοθεύεται. It is common to translate the word νόθος, “spurious” (and the kindred verb, “to be spurious”); but it is plain enough from this passage, as also from others that Eusebius did not employ the word in that sense. He commonly used it in fact, in a loose way, to mean “disputed,” in the same sense in which he often employed the word ἀντιλεγόμενος. Lücke, indeed, maintained that Eusebius always used the words νόθος and ἀντιλεγόμενος as synonymous; but in Bk. III. chap. 25, as pointed out in note 1 on that chapter, he employed the words as respective designations of two distinct classes of books. The Epistle of James is classed by Eusebius (in Bk. III. chap. 25) among the antilegomena. The ancient testimonies for its authenticity are very few. It was used by no one, except Hermas, down to the end of the second century. Irenæus seems to have known the epistle (his works exhibit some apparent reminiscences of it), but he nowhere directly cites it. The Muratorian Fragment omits it, but the Syriac Peshito contains it, and Clement of Alexandria shows a few faint reminiscences of it in his extant works, and according to Eusebius VI. 14, wrote commentaries upon “Jude and the other catholic epistles.” It is quoted frequently by Origen, who first connects it with the “Brother of the Lord,” but does not express himself with decision as to its authenticity. From his time on it was commonly accepted as the work of “James, the Lord’s brother.” Eusebius throws it among the antilegomena; not necessarily because he considered it unauthentic, but because the early testimonies for it are too few to raise it to the dignity of one of the homologoumena (see Bk. III. chap. 25, note 1). Luther rejected the epistle upon purely dogmatic grounds. The advanced critical school are unanimous in considering it a post-apostolic work, and many conservative scholars agree with them. See Holtzmann’s Einleitung, p. 475 sqq. and Weiss’ Einleitung, p. 396 sqq. The latter defends its authenticity (i.e. the authorship of James, the brother of the Lord), and, in agreement with many other scholars of conservative tendencies, throws its origin back into the early part of the fifties.
- The authenticity of the Epistle of Jude (also classed among the antilegomena by Eusebius in Bk. III. chap. 25) is about as well supported as that of the Epistle of James. The Peshito does not contain it, and the Syrian Church in general rejected it for a number of centuries. The Muratorian Fragment accepts it, and Tertullian evidently considered it a work of Jude, the apostle (see De Cultu Fem. I. 3). The first to quote from it is Clement of Alexandria who wrote a commentary upon it in connection with the other catholic epistles according to Eusebius, VI. 14. 1. Origen looked upon it much as he looked upon the Epistle of James, but did not make the “Jude, the brother of James,” one of the twelve apostles. Eusebius treats it as he does James, and Luther, followed by many modern conservative scholars (among them Neander), rejects it. Its defenders commonly ascribe it to Jude, the brother of the Lord, in distinction from Jude the apostle, and put its composition before the destruction of Jerusalem. The advanced critical school unanimously deny its authenticity, and most of them throw its composition into the second century, although some put it back into the latter part of the first. See Holtzmann, p. 501.
- On the Epistles of Peter, see Bk. III. chap. 3, notes 1 and 2. On the Epistles of John, see ibid. chap. 44, notes 18 and 19.
- ἐν πλείσταις ἐκκλησίαις