Jude and the Relatives of Jesus in the Early Church (1989 Bauckham), book
From 4 Enoch: The Online Encyclopedia of Second Temple Judaism
Jude and the Relatives of Jesus in the Early Church (1989) is a book by Richard Bauckham.
In this interesting study, Bauckham devotes his attention to the role and importance of the family of Jesus in the early church. He purposefully leaves James out of the picture, since many have focused on his figure. Bauckham first sets out to identify the relatives of Jesus within the surviving literature and comes to some interesting conclusions. For example, Bauckham claims that both Mary and Salome were Jesus’ sisters, and though not widely known at a later date, they probably played a role in the early Christian movement, at least in one branch of Christianity (pp.44). Bauckham also suggest that the brothers of Jesus, like Peter, must have been engaged in traveling missionary work from the early days of the church and that their status as apostles was as well-known as Peter’s (pp.58). Concerning the list of fifteen Jewish bishops of Jerusalem (preserved by Eusebius and Epiphanius), Bauckham maintains that the last twelve names of Jewish bishops were coworkers with James, rather than later bishops. Bauckham bases his findings on the Letter of James to Quadratus where six of the latter names of Jewish bishops are described as "scribes of the Jews" (pp.72-73). Thus, Justus was the third and last Jewish bishop of Jerusalem up to the Bar Kokhba Revolt, and may have also been a relative of Jesus. Concerning the identity of the mysterious figure of Jacob of Sikhnin, found in rabbinic literature, Bauckham raises the possibility that he was James the grandson of Jude, who must have been a fairly close contemporary of R. Eliezer (pp.116).
A major part of Bauckham's book includes some of his previous research on the Letter of Jude, in his opinion, the most neglected and misunderstood epistle of the New Testament. Bauckham makes heavy use of Second Temple Jewish sources in order to illuminate the interpretation and setting of Jude's Letter, comparing Jude with 1 Enoch, the Testament of Moses, and Qumranic literature. Bauckham goes against a common understanding of Jude which views it as dependent on 2 Peter and reflecting "early catholicism." In contrast to this view, Bauckham argues that Jude and 2 Peter reflect very different historical situations and that Jude derives from a Palestinian Apocalyptic circle.
In the final section of his book, Bauckham investigates the Lukan genealogy of Jesus by comparing it with 1 Enoch. He finds that like 1 En 10:12ff (where world history from Adam to the last judgment comprises seventy-seven generations, seven up to and including Enoch, followed by seventy generations), the Lukan genealogy of Jesus includes a similar genealogical distribution with seventy-seven generations from from Adam to Jesus--Jesus standing at the last generation of history before the end. Bauckham thinks that this Lukan genealogy must have been composed in this form during the generation of Jesus’ contemporaries and that it ultimately derives from the family circle of Jesus, since it conveys the apocalyptic message that Jesus belongs to the last generation of humanity (pp.325-26). Furthermore, Bauckham compares Luke's genealogy with the Letter of Jude. He argues that Jude's pairing of the two prophecies of "Enoch the seventh from Adam" (Jude 14) and "the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Jude 17) corresponds to the Enochic seventh and the seventy-seventh generations of world history, the end of the first week and the end of the last week of world history. For Jude, these prophecies of judgment come from a prophet (Enoch) who saw the first eruption of evil and the final judgment in the binding of the Watchers, and from the prophets (from Jude's time) who will live to see the final judgment of all evil. Thus, the Letter of Jude (which Bauckham views as an authentic work of the brother of Jesus)provides the link for locating the origin of the Lukan genealogy: Jude incorporates the family of Jesus (basing himself on Enoch literature) within an apocalyptic world-historical scheme. "If the genealogy is not the work of Jude himself, it must certainly come from his circle” (pp.364).--Isaac W. Oliver, University of Michigan
Editions and translations
Published in 1989.