Read by the Author
Take a few minutes to listen to four brief excerpts from MY BROTHER’S KEEPER that give some of the book’s flavor. Looking back 2,000 years and having the Scriptures, we know how things turned out. But imagine what Gospel events would have looked like as they unfolded before people at the time.
EXCERPT #1: Joachim, father of Mary, visits the home of Joseph with the priest Zacharias. They recount Mary’s experience as a servant in the temple, and prepare to ask a big favor…
EXCERPT #2: Mary tells Joseph how she had been visited by a messenger of God while Joseph was away obtaining materials for a construction project…
EXCERPT #3: James, now training to become a rabbi, speaks with a beautiful girl named Avigail, and they discover feelings each had never before experienced…
EXCERPT #4: Behind the scenes at Jesus’ trial before Pilate, James is defending his brother, as the high priest, Caiaphas, attempts to persuade the Roman prefect that Jesus is guilty of disrupting the peace…
Click Here to Order the Print Edition:
Click Below to Order the eBook Edition:
Or Visit Your Favorite Bookstore
or Online Book Vendor.
Bill Kassel’s Novel about
the Family of Jesus
My Brother’s Keeper
What if your brother was the most controversial figure in the history of the world and your job was to protect him?
That’s the challenge faced by Rabbi James of Jerusalem — whom the Bible identifies as “the brother of the Lord” — in MY BROTHER’S KEEPER, an inspired retelling of the Christian story by author Bill Kassel.
What can James do to fulfill a deathbed promise to his father, Joseph, and save Jesus, the Nazarene prophet who is stirring contention among the Jewish religious leadership and the Roman occupiers?
The only hope of keeping his brother from a gruesome death is James’ cordial relationship with the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate, who turns to him for guidance in matters of Jewish law and custom. Indeed, Pilate views James with the utmost respect, even seeing him as a possible successor to the corrupt high priest, Caiaphas.
Protecting Jesus becomes the consuming focus of James’ life as his brother runs afoul of the temple authorities, and Zealot rebels attempt to exploit his popularity — their goal to foment a revolution against the hated Romans. But can even such a widely admired man of honor and learning as James calm the fears of change stirred by Jesus and his movement? Who can counter the forces of politics, greed and corruption that loom over a First-Century Palestine ready to explode?
Inspired by writings handed down from the earliest days of Christianity, MY BROTHER’S KEEPER tracks the lives of individuals instantly recognizable as religious / cultural icons. But it presents new insights into who those people were, how they lived, and what was going on around them.
The book paints a rich portrait of James, youngest son of the widowed carpenter and builder, Joseph of Nazareth. It reveals how the teenage Mary is placed into Joseph’s care, and relates the perilous circumstances under which Joseph and Mary flee to Egypt with her newborn son to escape the murderous King Herod.
As the story unfolds, we follow James’ adventures through the intrigues of Jerusalem. We watch him train under the great sage, Hillel, to become a rabbi; play a key role in reform efforts within the Sanhedrin; and fall in love with the beautiful Avigail who shares his passion for knowledge and Jewish tradition.
Years later — now a famous scholar and counselor known as James the Just — James attempts to forge a link with Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, in anticipation of having to intercede for his brother. But controversy continues to build around the spiritual mission Jesus has launched. And despite James’ desperate struggle, the political maneuvering by religious and civil leaders puts intense pressure on Pilate, making Jesus’ crucifixion inevitable.
MY BROTHER’S KEEPER is an imaginative and riveting historical / religious novel in the tradition of such bible-based classics as Ben Hur, The Robe, and The Silver Chalice. It offers a sweeping vision of a nation at its tipping point — a proud and ancient people facing economic stress, political division, and the specter of radicalism and violence, conditions not unlike those of our own time. This is a sprawling tale with a fresh and compelling perspective on Jesus and his family that will make you reconsider the story that’s at the very heart of Western Civilization.