The number twelve often signifies a complete divine arrangement or organization. Upon hearing the call from the rabbi Jesus, all four men readily dropped their nets to become His mathetai, His talmidim. How might you more fully devote your entire life to follow the Lord? Article Images Copyright © 2020 Getty Images unless otherwise indicated. How to Find Hope, Joy, Peace, and Love This Advent. God’s chosen people, the Israelites, were divided into twelve tribes. Clarify • Share • Report • Asked May 18 2014 • Anonymous Answers (2) Discuss; Community answers are sorted based on votes. The accounts of the calling of the disciples are also found in Mark 1:16–20, Luke 5:2–11, and John 1:40–42. Since the multitudes had turned away from their promised Messiah, Jesus began a six-month period of private instruction with the Twelve, those He would prepare for the time of this death, resurrection, and departure. Christ established the pattern for all of His disciples with His initial choosing of the Twelve. All rights reserved. After a night of prayer on a mountain, Jesus called His followers together and formally chose twelve from them to serve as apostles: 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 (also known as Thaddaeus, the name that is used in Matthew and Mark), and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.” (Luke 6:13–16). And through the power of the Holy Spirit, Jesus promises to be with His followers “to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:19–20). The apostle Matthew was chosen later (Matthew 9:9). He wished these men to be with him all the time. Instead, the twelve men He chose came from various professions and walks of life. While we know from scripture that Jesus had many more than 12 disciples, why did he choose the 12 to be his inner circle? This is one of the ‘most known’ of Jesus’ 12 disciples, John. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is. Learn More, Delight in God’s Presence in the New Year. Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him. Article edited from study features in the NIV Storyline Bible. Adapted from the lecture notes of Dr. Doug Bookman, professor of New Testament Exposition at Shepherds Theological Seminary (used by permission). The NIV Storyline Bible features over 200 articles that illuminate the interconnected nature of God’s Word and the complete story that spans the Old and New Testaments. The rest of the apostles were chosen by Jesus Christ for a total of twelve (Matthew 10:1-4; Mark 3:16-19; Luke 6:14-16). The timing of the Jesus choosing the 12 disciples. The twelve disciples represent the new covenant just as the twelve tribes of Israel represented the old covenant (Luke 22:29-30). At the end of Jesus’ life, one of these disciples betrayed him (see John 6:64, 6:71). In Judaism, dedicated apprentices followed a rabbi. As Jesus made clear throughout the Gospels and as His apostles made clear throughout their New Testament writings, not everyone who calls Jesus “Savior” can be counted as a disciple. Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He “graduated” His disciples, as was the custom of the rabbi. Therefore he chose 12 for a particularly cultural reason. The norm was for someone to approach a rabbi and ask to be taught by him, but Jesus did the reverse by choosing the men He wanted and calling them to follow Him. Who Was Doubting Thomas? Seeking seclusion to instruct the Twelve, Jesus retreated to what would then be known as "heathen lands." His instruction during this time culminated in the Transfiguration, witnessed by the three members of the "inner circle," Peter, James, and John, an event that fortified their faith and left an indelible impression on their later ministry (see 2 Peter 1:16-21). The twelve disciples were chosen by Jesus for the great commission, which is spreading the message of salvation through Christ. It was significant for Jesus to choose twelve disciples instead of another number. But it wasn’t until the summer of 31AD or 18 months into Jesus ministry that he actually choose the 12. From the many who followed Him, Jesus of Nazareth formed a special teacher-student relationship with twelve particular men. And very soon after he had gathered together a large company of disciples, he made choice of twelve, out of this number, who were to be his apostles. This is what I've heard from some people. California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information. Eventually, the disciple will be able to do everything his Master has called him to do (Philippians 4:13). Just as the Jewish leaders had done, the people sought a sign to prove Jesus was who He claims to be: the promised Messiah. But why did Jesus choose exactly twelve men? Here is a Possible Answer for Why There Were 12 Disciples According to Matthew 19:28, the number 12 is very significant as it relates to the twelve tribes of Israel. Notice that these men did not volunteer to serve Jesus as disciples and apostles. With this vision of the Kingdom of God, Jesus chose 12 disciples to be part of his Inner circle of followers. The 12 Disciples. Rather, under the tutelage of Jesus, they would become men who would “fish for people” (Matthew 4:18–22).1. I hope you are enjoying this series of the disciples who were “Chosen, but not Perfect.” Later these five men were chosen by Christ to be disciples or apostles. This could mean that one person approaches spiritual truth in the Andrew way, while another approaches it in the Phillip way. And, it shows the relationship between the newness of Jesus’ message and the old religious system under Jewish law. The Twelve Apostles would serve as the core of the future church, and this time would prepare them for—from their vantage point—the catastrophe of His death. Why did Jesus have 12 men as His disciples, but no women? Many who claimed to be His disciples rejected Him and left. Later on, we read how the other eleven apostles elected a new person to fill Judas’ place, so that there were twelve apostles again (Acts 1:21-26). Who were the "Sons of Thunder" in the Bible? The number twelve has significant meaning in the Bible. Peter, whose nickname meant “the rock,” was the first of the disciples to express faith in Jesus as the Messiah and Son of God (Matthew 16:16). Christianity.com is a member of the Salem Web Network of sites including: Copyright © 2020, Christianity.com. Journey through the interwoven story of the gospel from Genesis to Revelation. Does this mean He was sexist or unfair? No longer would they be conventional fishermen. He put it in very stark terms when He said that anyone who wanted to follow Him must take up his cross (Luke 9:23) and follow Him. In addition to the 12 and the 72 of course, Jesus chose 3 specially close disciples (3 is a quarter of 12) peter, James and John. John wrote the books of the Gospel of John, 1-3 John and the book of Revelation. After a night of prayer on a mountain, Jesus called His followers together and formally chose twelve from them to serve as apostles: 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 … This man was called Judas Iscariot. But it was only as Jesus neared the end of His earthly life that He explained to them the real cost of discipleship. To follow Jesus means today what it has always meant. The amazing thing that we read in the Gospel accounts is that when Jesus called these men, they left whatever it was that they had previously been doing and followed Him. Ultimately, what Jesus required of His followers was the willingness to give up everything for Him. The 12 Apostles were known for their closeness to Jesus, as He chose them to be makers of disciples across the nations. Many of the Jewish leaders had rejected Him and claimed His power came from Satan (Matthew 12), but the people—for the most part—flocked after Him. Jesus found Peter and his brother Andrew casting nets into the sea since they were fishermen. And the group He chose was a diverse bunch—they weren’t from the Jewish religious establishment. Why Did Jesus Ask Three Times if Peter Loved Him? Since the multitudes had turned away from their promised Messiah, Jesus began a six-month period of private instruction with the Twelve, those He would prepare for the time of this death, resurrection, and departure. No doubt many others were led to become his disciples from simply hearing him preach; and from listening to the gracious words that he spoke. For some, their allegiance to Christ resulted in their being killed. What Transformed Them? These 12 disciples had the privilege of sitting at the feet of the Messiah and participating in the expansion of God’s Kingdom on earth. 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