Jesus Disciples – What is a Disciples
Jesus’ disciples were an important part of His early ministry. A disciple is someone who follows and learns. Often a disciple is being mentored by another. Thus, a disciple of Jesus is a follower and a learner, someone who both follows Jesus and continues learning about Him and from Him.
When we refer to the twelve disciples, we are referring to those whom Jesus chose at the beginning of His ministry. Jesus had twelve specific disciples when He was on earth as a man. These men were witnesses of His earthly ministry.
However, in a sense, all who follow Him obediently are also His disciples.
Jesus Disciples – Who were they?
Jesus disciples are listed in Matthew 10:2-4: “He called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every disease and sickness. These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.”
Mark 3:16-19: “These are the twelve he appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter), James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means Sons of Thunder); Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.”
Luke 6:13-16: “When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.”
Jesus Disciples – What were their occupations?
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Jesus’ disciples were ordinary men whom God used in an extraordinary manner. He chose fishermen, a tax collector, a political zealot, and other ordinary men. The Bible presents these men’s failings, doubts, and struggles. They were prone to faults, mistakes, misstatements, bad attitudes, and lapses in faith. But, the Bible also presents that the disciples were radically changed following the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Acts 4:13-14 says, “When they [the authorities] saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. But since they could see the man who had been healed standing there with them, there was nothing they could say.”
Jesus’ disciples were not unintelligent, but they had not received high training from the rabbinical schools. They did receive “training” directly from Jesus. They heard His prayers, listened to His message, and watching His living example. They knew Jesus personally!
It is from these men that we learn who Jesus is! They recorded His words, His actions, His interactions, and His ultimate sacrifice for humanity.
Jesus Disciples: Key References to Explore
- Matthew 10:2-4
- Mark 3:16-19
- Luke 6:13-16
- Acts 4:13-14