(Zebʹe·dee) [possibly from a Heb. root meaning “endow”].
Father of Jesus’ apostles James and John. (Mt 4:21, 22; 10:2; 26:37; Mr 3:17; 10:35; Lu 5:10; Joh 21:2) Salome is generally believed to have been Zebedee’s wife and the sister of Jesus’ mother Mary. This would mean that Zebedee was Jesus’ uncle by marriage, and James and John, Jesus’ cousins.—Mt 27:56; Mr 15:40; Joh 19:25; see SALOME No. 1.
Zebedee was in the fishing business on the Sea of Galilee and apparently did quite well with it, for there were hired men working with him. (Mr 1:16, 19, 20) His wife Salome was able to render material services to Jesus. (Mr 15:40, 41) So while there is no indication that Zebedee himself followed Christ, his family freely did so.—Mt 20:20.