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if it is true that Mary and Joseph had children as claimed by some christians

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/3/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 618 times Debate No: 66325
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)




may i know what are your scriptural proofs to make this claim?


To answer your question-(All quotes are from the NASB.)

Matthew 1:24-25--"And Joseph arose from his sleep, and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took as his wife, and kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he called His name Jesus."
Matthew 12:46-47--"While He was still speaking to the multitudes, behold, His mother and brothers were standing outside, seeking to speak to Him. And someone said to Him, "Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside seeking to speak to You."
Matthew 13:55--"Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not His mother called Mary, and His brothers, James and Joseph and Simon and Judas?"
Mark 6:2-3--"And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue; and the many listeners were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get these things, and what is this wisdom given to Him, and such miracles as these performed by His hands? "Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, and Joses, and Judas, and Simon? Are not His sisters here with us?"
John 2:12--"After this He went down to Capernaum, He and His mother, and His brothers, and His disciples; and there they stayed a few days."
Acts 1:14--"These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers."
1 Cor. 9:4-5--"Do we not have a right to eat and drink? Do we not have a right to take along a believing wife, even as the rest of the apostles, and the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?"
Gal. 1:19--But I did not see any other of the apostles except James, the Lord's brother
I believe these will suffice.
Debate Round No. 1


Mt 1:24-25 is not a proof that they had children because it does say that they had children. It is illogical to conclude that simply because a couple are married they must necessarily have children. I have relatives who are married and they have no children.
Mt 12:46-47 and other verses saying that Jesus had brothers and two sisters are also not conclusive because in Jewish language, the term brothers and sisters can refer to all kinds of relatives. For example, Abraham refers to Lot as a brother but he is his nephew. When Jacob was pursued by Laban, he referred to everyone present as "brothers." "In the presence of our brothers, examine for yourself what I have and take what is yours."
Moreover, it is not the intent of the passage to tell anyone that Jesus has brothers but to bring out the message of Jesus that "Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven, he is my brother and sister and mother."
Mt 13:55. Anything found in scripture is WOG. But we do not have to understand that this is true. We can also read in scripture the words: "There is no God." And again, "He drives away devils by the power of Beelzebul." In reading scripture we sometimes need to determine who is saying what. In this particular verse (and parallels), it is unknowing persons who are speaking. Incidentally, in Mt 27,56, a certain Mary is identified as being the mother of James and Joseph, probably cousins of Jesus. Jude and Simon are names of some apostles and can qualify as brothers of Jesus.
Jn2,12 mentions "his mother and the brothers." But Jn2,1 says "Jesus and his disciples were also invited." Presumably, the disciples and the brothers are the same persons.
Acts 1,14 and 1 Co.4:5, and Ga. 1,19 are covered by the previous arguments.


You asked for me to provide verses from the bible, and I believe I have done so. These are the statements made by several christian websi
"Some Roman Catholics claim that these """brothers” were actually Jesus’ cousins. However, in each instance, the specific Greek word for """brother” is used. While the word can refer to other relatives, its normal and literal meaning is a physical brother. There was a Greek word for """cousin,” and it was not used. Further, if they were Jesus’ cousins, why would they so often be described as being with Mary, Jesus’ mother? There is nothing in the context of His mother and brothers coming to see Him that even hints that they were anyone other than His literal, blood-related, half-brothers."

For your information, the first verse was included to show that Mary was not a perpetual virgin, being that it said "Until she gave birth to a son" which implies that she was not a virgin after the birth.
Also, to your point-
There is a word in Greek that means cousin. When the bible was translated into Greek, why would they use a different word?
Debate Round No. 2


About the word until. We should understand that we are reading approximate translations. How should we understand its meaning? For example the word "until" is also found in Gn 8,7. Are we to understand that the raven continually flew back and forth until the waters dried up, which was for many days, while the dove returned to the ark as it found nowhere to perch?
Now let me present my own arguments.
Joseph was betrothed to Mary but before they came to live together, she was found to be with child. What a shock it must have been for Joseph. If you were in his place, how would you react? But Joseph being a man of honor, instead of exposing Mary's apparent infidelity. decided to divorce her informally. But before he could do so, it was revealed to him that it was by God's design that Mary had conceived by the Holy Spirit and was to give birth to the Jesus, his very own Savior. Therefore he was not to repudiate her, and to protect her integrity, he was to take her home and continue the pretense of being her husband.
Being a God-fearing man, Joseph immediately consented to be a foster father to Jesus, but never a husband to Mary. It is the likes of him that Jesus said: "There are eunuchs born that way from their mother's womb, there are eunuchs made so by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves that way for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. let anyone accept this who can." Joseph was such a man.
Allow me also to cite Leviticus 19,20: "If a man sleeps with a woman as though married to her, she being another's concubine slave not yet purchased or given her freedom, then the man is to be answerable for infringement of rights." Now, if this is the case with human relationships, would it not be a greater sin for Joseph to have a sexual relationship with Mary, who has been claimed by the Holy Spirit to be Its spouse, and mother of the Most High?
Continuing the narration of Matthew, note that he always uses the expression, "TAKE THE CHILD AND HIS MOTHER WITH YOU," but never. "take the child and your wife with you," nor "take your wife and her child with you." And does it not seem strange that there is never a mention of their having a child born to them?
Consider also the following. In John 19,25-27, we read: Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. If it is true that Mary had other sons and daughters, were they not obliged to accompany their mother and condole with their brother?
We continue to read: "Seeing his mother and the disciple he loved standing near her, Jesus said to his mother, 'Woman, this is your son'. Then to the disciple he said, 'This is your mother'. And from that moment the disciple made a place for her in his home.
Did Jesus give any further instruction? NO. So if it is true that Mary had other sons and daughters, what reason would John have to make a place for Mary in his home, and why should Mary live with him? Thus I conclude that Mary was bereft of any other children and this is why John, being told that Mary was now her mother. and he being her son, was constrained to make a place for her in his home.
If it is possible, I appeal to anyone who might know, I once bought a booklet which I have lost, which claims that Joseph was a widower. And if it was so, then he might have had other children which might explain why Jesus allegedly had other brothers and sisters. And perhaps this is why Joseph is pictured as a much older man than Mary.
Concluding my arguments, I appeal to those who believe otherwise to give more importance to my arguments.


Here is the thing. I am using straightforward facts. The Bible is the word of God as you said before. When the Bible says brother, I don't have to make excuses. It is referring to his brothers. The perpetual Virginity of Mary is simply not Biblical.
"Is He not the carpenter's son? Is not his mother named Mary and his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas?"
Sure, the word for brothers can have other meanings, but this meaning is clear. It is clearly talking about his immediate family. What would be more natural to say-
"Isn't that the son of Mary and Joseph? and the brother of James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas?
"Isn't that the son of Mary and Joseph? and the cousin of his male cousins, James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas?"
See, this is a doctrine that is not biblical, and there is no reason for it to be. Sexual pleasure (Within Marriage of course) is a gift from God. There is nothing impure about it.
Think about it-

Would Mary's perpetual virginity glorify God?
No. Mary's virgin birth, however, is a miracle, but there is no reason for abstinence within the their holy union.

Is Mary's perpetual virginity reasonable?

No. There is no reason that Mary would not have wanted to, and would have, had sexual relations with Joseph.

Is Mary's perpetual virginity Biblical?
No. I challenge you to give facts supporting your claim that Mary was a perpetual virgin from scripture.
Debate Round No. 3


I believe I have answered your objections re brothers with my previous arguments with scriptural verses and logical reasoning. Granting that there is mention of persons saying that Jesus had siblings, my question was: Who were saying this? Were they authoritative people? The evangelists were merely reporting what ignorant people were saying, without confirming what they were saying, like those who thought that Jesus was Elijah, John the Baptist brought back to ;life, or some other prophet.
I suppose you also want to question the catholic dogma of Mary's Immaculate Conception. You believe what ignorant people said. Mary is authoritative and she said: My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord for he has done great things for me. What great things, do you know that God did for Mary? If I may venture to say so, the great things that God did for Mary were for her to be conceived without sin, and thus be made worthy to carry our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in her womb. For unless Mary was sinless, how could Jesus be born from her. He would be contaminated by her sin. As for her perpetual virginity, for sure many women, like nuns, have remained virgins all their lives. For God nothing is impossible.


Again, I ask for biblical proof for your claims. I am not making excuses or assumptions like you. I belive what the bible says. Why do you belive that? What proof do you have to say that Jesus had no brothers?
"I suppose you also want to question the catholic dogma of Mary's Immaculate Conception"
You have to realize that this is entirely irrelivant to the topic at hand.
"I believe I have answered your objections re brothers with my previous arguments with scriptural verses and logical reasoning. Granting that there is mention of persons saying that Jesus had siblings, my question was: Who were saying this? Were they authoritative people?"
So, what you are saying is that you are questioning the accuracy of the Word of God, but accepting the word of men that Mary was always a virgin.
"As for her perpetual virginity, for sure many women, like nuns, have remained virgins all their lives."
This is a shame isn't it. These women never were able to be married and feel the benefiets of sexual pleasure, which is a gift from God, and is perfectly acceptable within marriage. And all of it from an innacurate and unbiblical dogma installed later from the words of men, not the words of God.
Did Christ advocate abstinece?
The following is 1 Timothy 4-
"Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.
They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth.
For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving,"
Back to you Con.

Debate Round No. 4


There is a saying: For those who believe, no explanation is necessary. But for those who do not believe, no explanation will suffice. Nevertheless I will try to make a clearer statement.
I have given my reasons based on scripture, why I believe that Joseph never touched Mary as it would be sinful for him (LV. 19, 20) and he remained chaste as Jesus advocated (MT 19,12b), considering the circumstances leading to his being told by the angel to "not be afraid to take Mary home" as if she were his wife and he her husband to preserve the honor of Mary. Otherwise she would continue through life as a divorcee, which would destroy the plan of God because the messiah could never be born of a disgraced woman.
With this consideration in mind, as I have previously said, Joseph, being a God-fearing man, consented to be the protector of Jesus , His own savior, without any thought of having any sexual relationship with Mary, who had been espoused by the Holy Spirit. If he were to sleep with Mary. he would be betraying his mission.
Returning to your citations, while at first glance it appears that scripture is telling us that James and Joseph, Simon and Jude are indeed the brothers of Jesus, we must discern that Matthew and Mark are not confirming that these persons are Jesus' brothers, but they are merely quoting the words of an anonymous "THEY", who used the word "brothers" in relation to Jesus.
However if we look at MT 27,56, Matthew positively identifies James and Joseph as the son of a certain Mary. And in Acts1,13 Simon and Jude appear as apostles of Jesus. Therefore. they are definitely not the brothers of Jesus.
As for the alleged brothers of Jesus in MK 3,21, MT 12,46 and LK 8,19 we should realize that these are parallels and are one and the same event. But in MK 3,1 we read: 'When his RELATIVES heard of this, they set out to take charge of him." So most likely the brothers mentioned therein are the very same RELATIVES looking for Jesus, but not his brothers. And about the brothers mentioned in JN2,12, these are probably the same persons mentioned in JN 2,1 as apostles.
From the foregoing explanations, it is obvious that the scriptural verses that you cite to prove that Jesus had brothers are hardly any proof that Mary had children by Joseph. And who knows if perhaps Joseph was indeed a widower who had children by another wife.
To tackle your question: Did Jesus advocate abstinence? Yes and no. Jesus did not make any specific statement but I believe it is implied in Jn19,12b: "Let anyone accept this (to be a eunuch for the sake of the kingdom) who can." Consider also the words of Paul (1Co,7,1) "Yes, it is a good thing for a man not to touch a woman"; (vs9) "It is a good thing for them to stay as they are, like me"; (vs38) "The man who keeps his daughter unmarried has done something even better."
So, contrary to what you say, it is not a shame for women never to be married, or for nuns to remain virgins, forgoing the benefits of sexual pleasure to consecrate themselves to service, although this may be a gift from God and perfectly acceptable.
As for your reference to "hypocrites whose consciences are hardened as though with a red-hot iron who forbid marriage," Paul did not mean to refer to the rule of the Church for priests to be celibate. For your information, during the time of Paul there were Jewish sects, like the Essenes, who did not marry. You may also be unaware of a heretical sect in the 11th century, the Albigenses, who forbade marriage.
I apologize for including something you consider irrelevant to the topic. But so are your last two issues.


While I have used straightforward arguments, Con has attempted to twist the bible to their own benefit.
Some of the things you say are just wrong-
"I believe that Joseph never touched Mary as it would be sinful for him"
You are saying that it would be sinful for a man to have sexual relations with his wife. This, obviously, is absurd.
" Joseph, being a God-fearing man, consented to be the protector of Jesus , His own savior, without any thought of having any sexual relationship with Mary, who had been espoused by the Holy Spirit. If he were to sleep with Mary. he would be betraying his mission."

a) Jesus doesn't really need protection. (You know, God in the flesh and such)
b) Second, the Holy Spirit did not marry Mary. You have no biblical proof for this.
c) There is no reason that someone would be "betraying his mission" by having sexual relations with his wife.
d) I am fairly sure that Joseph did in fact have thoughts of having sexual relations with Mary, as they were married.

Also, this is from the writings of Josephus,[1] a historian not long after the life of Jesus-
"and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James,"
The name James also matches up with the aforementioned James.

Please, consider the evidence, and vote Pro.

Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by amigodana 2 years ago
Con is definitely catholic, lol!!!

He has the wrong father;

Genesis 3:1 "Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?"

Catholics question and confuse the simplicity of Christ.

John 8:43 "Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word."

John 8:44 "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it."

John 8:45 "And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not."
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
Isn't that just like Catholicism. Something can be in black and white and they still hold onto whatever the pope says is true.
Posted by Ragnar 2 years ago
Please reformat your resolution into a true/false statement. Such as "Mary and Joseph from the bible, most likely had children after Jesus."

Also you may want to read the religious debates subsection of
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
Mark 6:3.And nowhere does it say Mary and Joseph did not have sexual relations.They did not come together till Jesus was born is all.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by FaustianJustice 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Seemed pretty straight forward. From the book it says... Anything else doesn't really matter.