The book first introduces James as a little boy, exhibiting his curiosity and eagerness to learn more about Jesus. As the story progresses, readers get a glimpse into James’ journey of faith, as he witnesses Jesus’ miracles, listens to his teachings, and becomes one of his closest followers. James’ character is portrayed with authenticity, emphasizing his innocence
James’ Character in The Bible and The Chosen
James in the Bible
Little James has a significant counterpart in the Bible, namely the Apostle James. The nicknames “James the Less” may have been given due to his younger or smaller stature, but one thing is for certain; he lacked no faith or resolve in following Jesus and contributing to His ministry. In fact, James’ service as an apostle is one of the only things we truly know about him.
About this sturdy biblical disciple, not much is known. Most people agree that James the Less was born in Galilee, Israel, and resided there until he began serving as a disciple of Jesus. Although James was a tax collector, according to Matthew 9:9, there is also a common belief that he was a fisherman and net-mender. James may have pursued both of these professions, but when it came time to join Jesus’ ministry and spread His good news throughout the world, he gave up everything—his books and his net. Although there is a lot of conjecture regarding James’s upbringing and relationships, it is generally agreed that he was Alphaeus’ son.
It’s likely that this biblical James experienced many of the events of Jesus’ life that are recorded in scripture. It’s likely that he was there to witness the Crucifixion. We do know for sure; however, we read in 1 Corinthians 15:7 that James the Less was one of the first to witness and serve Jesus after He had been resurrected.
After Jesus’ final ascension, when the church was left in the hands of the apostles, James the Less was a firm example and a key instrument in continuing the ministry Jesus had built. It’s likely that James led the apostles in deciding to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles—which had not been done before—and bring the teachings of Jesus to people in every corner of the world. Acts 15:13 tells us that James the Less served as a missionary for the rest of his days, acting as a chief spokesman for the Jerusalem Church. It’s theorized that he traveled to Persia and Egypt, possibly to share the Gospel with the people there. It’s most commonly believed that James died a martyr—most likely stoned to death—in Jerusalem in 62 A.D.
James in The Chosen
When we first meet The Chosen’s Little James in the show’s second episode, he meets Jesus while at a Shabbat dinner. He later accepts Jesus’ invitation to be an apostle and learns the gospel from Him. James is present for the significant miracles and events depicted in the show and works with the other apostles to serve and bless many people as part of Jesus’ ministry.
Little James’s character lives with a physical disability. While the disability is not explicitly specified in the show, it appears to inhibit James’ ability to walk quickly and without a cane. Viewers may question, did Little James have a disability in the Bible? If he did, it’s not recorded in the New Testament. This element to James’s story was added by the creators of The Chosen, possibly to add a deeper dimension to his character in the show.