In traditional Christian theology, Jesus’ closest associates are a little remote: the Father and the Holy Ghost. Recently, however, revisionist scholars have been claiming more significance for such figures as Mary Magdalene (Jesus’ wife?), Thomas (Jesus’ twin?), and James (Jesus’ political-radical brother?). Robert Eisenman, one of the researchers who broke the scholarly stranglehold over the Dead Sea Scrolls, explores the latter’s significance in his new book, which he discusses in a Smithsonian Associates lecture, “James the Brother of Jesus: Unlocking the Secrets of Early Christianity.” Eisenman is not the first to claim that James was Jesus’ true heir and the leader of Jewish political opposition to the Romans, but his 1,100-page book may be the most extensive inquiry into the subject. At 8 p.m. at the Department of Agriculture’s Jefferson Auditorium, 12th & Independence Ave. SW. $13. For reservations call (202) 357-3030. (Mark Jenkins)