Salome, Mother of the Zebedees

Key Scriptures: Matthew 20:20-24, 27:56; Mark 15:40-41, 16:1-2

Points for Bible Study February 27,2016

  1.  Her name, the Feminine form of “Solomon,” means “Peace.” (4., pg. 201.)
  2. She was the wife of Zebedee, a prosperous fisherman on Sea of Galilee.  The only glimpse we have of him is in his boat mending the nets when Jesus came and called his two sons to follow him. There was no action on Zebedee’s part to detain them.  (1., pg. 285.)
  3. Zebedee – The father of the apostles James and John (Mark 1:19-20) by Salome (Mark 15:40; Matt. 27:56). Zebedee and his sons were associated with Simon and Andrew in a fishing business at Capernaum (Mark 1:16-20, Luke 5:10).  The fact that he had servants (Mark 1:20) and that his wife seems to have contributed toward  Jesus’ support (Mark 15:40-41; Luke 8:2-3) makes it appear that he was a man of  some means.  The gospels offer no evidence that he actively followed Jesus, though he seems not to have hindered the activity of the wife and the sons (2., pg. 940.)
  4. Her character:  Salome, one of the saintly women who followed and ministered to Jesus, appears to have been one of His disciples from the outset of His ministry.  She had no doubt as to His Messiahship. (1., pg. 285)
  5. A faithful disciple – She remained a faithful disciple of Jesus’ up to the very end.  She was present at the crucifixion, when her sons had withdrawn.  She was also among the women who went to the tomb and found Jesus had risen from the dead. (1., pg.285-286.)
  6. Salome, Aunt of Jesus – (John 19:25) Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene (NIV – John 19:25).Some women were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome.  (Ft.nt. Mark 15:40 – Mary Magdalene. From Lk. 8:2 we learn that Jesus had driven seven demons out of her.  Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses. See v. 47; 16:1,   Salome, Probably the wife of Zebedee and mother of James and John (See Mt.27:56.) In John 19:25 “his mother’s sister” probably is to be distinguished from “Mary the wife of Clopas,” and Salome may be meant. This would make Salome and Zebedee aunt and uncle, and James and John cousins of Jesus. (2., pg. 167)
  7. Salome – Mother of James – James left his father Zebedee and the family fishing business to follow Jesus with other Apostles.  Along with his brother John and their, partner Peter, James became one of Jesus’ favored followers.  The ambitious, short-tempered  James was the church’s first martyr, he was executed at the hands of Herod Agrippa I, 15 years after Jesus died.
  8. Salome – Mother of John, the Apostle.  Matt 4:21-22 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother, John.  They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets.  Jesus called to them,  (v22) and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.
  9. Salome – She, misunderstood the meaning of the Kingdom of God. As a very ambitious  mother, she asked for her sons to be placed at His right and left hand, when the earthly kingdom she expected came into being, Jesus explained that these positions weren’t His to give. He also questioned her as to whether she and her sons would be able to endure the suffering that would be required. In effect, Jesus asked if her sons were prepared to drink the cup of martyrdom, which in the end, they did. James was the first apostle to be martyred, and John, the last. The mother sought instant positions for her sons. But, by losing their lives for Christ’s sake, they gained greater honor in heaven. (1., pg. 286)

Sources:

  1. Charles, Sylvia, Women in the Bible, 1988, Virgil Hensley Publishing.
  2. The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, Volume R-Z, 1962, Abingdon Press.
  3. Scriptures taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society, Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
  4. Syswerda, Jean E., Women of the Bible, 1999, Zondervan.

 

 

 

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One thought on “Salome, Mother of the Zebedees

  1. Interesting learning of the relative relationship between Mary mother of Jesus and Salome, sisters. Therefore, James and John, sons of Zebeedee, were cousins of Jesus. New highlight on Jesus’ selection of these two disciples. Thanks Reverend Glenda.

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