Will the real James please stand up?

James 1:1, James. This name is the English form of the Old French variation of James from the Late Latin name Iacomus, which was derived from the Greek New Testament name Iakobos (Iakobos), which in turn derives from the Hebrew name Ya’aqov (Heb. ceGH). This was the name of five men in the recorded in the Testimony of Yeshua. It is speculated that the development Iacobus to Iacomus is a result of nasalization in the French language of the o and assimilation to the following b followed by simplification of the cluster mb through loss of the b.

The notion that the name James derives from King James of England who ordered the translation of the Bible version that bears (published in 1611) his name is erroneous. This is because earlier English versions of the Bible (the Geneva Bible published in 1557 and the Wycliffe Bible published 1382 top 1395) used the name James (the English equivalent name Jacob) long before King James was born.

James. The Testimony of Yeshua records five men with the name James/Jacob/Ya’acov. They are:

  • James the Greater (Elder), the brother of John and one of the twelve apostles. He was a son of Zebedee and Salome. James was killed by King Herod Agrippa (Acts 12:1–2).
  • James the Less was the son of Alphaeus. He was one of the twelve apostles (Matt 10:1–3, Mark 3:14–19; Luke 6:13–16; Acts 1:13).
  • James is also the name of one of the half-brothers of Jesus, and probably the author of the book of the Bible that bears his name. He was most likely the apostolic leader of the Messianic community in Jerusalem (Matt 13:55; Acts 1:14 [i.e., Yeshua’s “brothers”]; 15:13; 21:18; Gal 1:19) whom history calls James the Just and whom the Jews the martyred in Jerusalem in 62 AD (see Josephus’ Ant. 20:9). (Galatians 1:19).
  • James, the father of the Apostle Judas (not Iscariot, Acts 1:13).
  • James who was the brother of Joses and the son of Mary (Matt 27:56).

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