Nothing is known of St. James the Greater's early life, though it has been established that he is the son of Zebedee and Salome and brother of John the disciple. The title "the Greater" was added to St. James' name to help distinguish him from the Apostle James "the Less," who is believed to have been shorter than James "the Greater. Saint James the Greater was one of Jesus' first disciples. James was fishing with his father and John the Apostle when Jesus came to the shores of the Sea of Galilee and called for the fisherman, who were unable to catch any fish that day, to dip their nets in the water once again. When the fishermen followed Jesus' instructions, they found their nets full, and after emptying the fish on board, the boats nearly sank from their weight. Later, James was one of only three called by Jesus to witness his Transfiguration, and when he and his brother wanted to call fire upon a Samaritan town, both were rebuked by Jesus. He traveled and spread the Word for nearly forty years in Spain.
Relation of St. James to Jesus
Please help support the mission of New Advent and get the full contents of this website as an instant download. Hebrew Yakob ; Septuagint Iakob ; N. Greek Iakobos ; a favourite name among the later Jews. The son of Zebedee and Salome Cf. Matthew ; Mark ; Zahn asserts that Salome was the daughter of a priest. James is styled "the Greater" to distinguish him from the Apostle James "the Less", who was probably shorter of stature. We know nothing of St. James's early life. He was the brother of John , the beloved disciple, and probably the elder of the two.
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Saint James is the patron saint of Spain and, according to tradition, his remains are held in Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. The son of Zebedee and Salome , James is styled "the Greater" to distinguish him from the Apostle James "the Less" , with greater meaning older or taller, rather than more important. He was the brother of John the Apostle. James is described as one of the first disciples to join Jesus. The Synoptic Gospels state that James and John were with their father by the seashore when Jesus called them to follow him. Jesus rebuked them, and the other apostles were annoyed with them. James and his brother wanted to call down fire on a Samaritan town, but were rebuked by Jesus. The Acts of the Apostles records that "Herod the king" traditionally identified with Herod Agrippa had James executed by the sword. Nixon suggests that this may have been caused by James's fiery temper,  in which he and his brother earned the nickname Boanerges or "Sons of Thunder". Bruce contrasts this story to that of the Liberation of Saint Peter , and notes that "James should die while Peter should escape" is a "mystery of divine providence ".
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