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Resume for an Apostle
One thing every business or church looks at is the schooling that an applicant has had. They look to see, how prestigious the university or college the applicant attended was and what kind of classes they took.
The Apostles were taught under one teacher, Jesus Christ. Jesus was teacher, Rabbi, and friend, to the Apostles. They traveled together, lived together, ate together, there were numerous opportunities every day, to study at Jesus feet.
Jesus hand picked these twelve, including Judas, the betrayer. Jesus, God's Son, saw something in these twelve, that nobody else could see. We realize for the prophesies to be fulfilled, there had to be a Judas Iscariot, to betray Jesus, but what of the others. Jesus looked at the heart of each individual follower and picked these men above everyone else that traveled with Him.
Peter and Andrew
Peter and Andrew were brothers, and fishermen by trade. Jesus called them to be fishers of men and they immediately threw down their nets and followed Jesus. Andrew is spoken of as a disciple of John the Baptist, and always mentioned as part of The Twelve. Andrew and Philip are the ones that found the lad with five loaves and two fish, that fed the five thousand. Andrew, as with all the Apostles, preached the gospel in various areas, tradition has him dying on a X shaped cross in the city Patras in the region of Achaea.
Peter, Petros, The Rock
Peter, is definitely, the most famous of these two brothers. Peter would not be chosen as minister material in any church I have ever attended. Peter is quick tempered, as seen in Christ's betrayal in the Garden of Gethsemane, when Peter pulls his sword and cuts off someones ear.
Peter is also boisterous, he says some of the most profound things in the New Testament, then turns around and says things that have Jesus, at one point say, get behind me Satan, to Peter. With Peter, you never have to wonder what he is thinking, he will tell you, most of the time before you even ask.
Peter says, " Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God." Then Peter turns around and, as prophesied by Christ, denies Jesus three times before the "cock crows" in the crowd at Jesus trial. And yet Jesus says, "Upon this Rock (Petros) I will build My Church.
I can't imagine any church, of any size, hiring Peter or a minister like him, to be their minister. He is to straight forward, to blunt, definitely going to offend people, and yet, Jesus Christ, chose him to be the spokesman for the early church.
Peter and James, the brother of Jesus, were looked at as the two leaders of the early church. In a modern day church setting, Peter would be the Pulpit Minister, James would be the Associate Minister. James took care of all the behind the scenes working of the early church, so that Peter was free to preach and witness to others.
Tradition has Peter dying upside down on a cross, because Peter didn't think himself worthy to die on a cross like Jesus. Tradition has Peter dying in Rome at the hands of Nero.
James And John, The Sons Of Thunder
James and John, the sons of Zebedee, also called the sons of Thunder. These two are the classic example of sibling rivalry. They argued about many things, including who was going to be the greatest in Jesus' Kingdom.
Peter, Andrew, James and John all worked together fishing. I am sure with these four, there was a lot of yelling between brothers and boats. James and John were loud and boisterous just as Peter was.
When the Samaritans rejected Jesus and the disciples, James and John wanted Jesus to call down fire from heaven to rain down on the Samaritans. Of these two, John became the greater recognized Apostles.
James was the first of the Apostles to be killed. James was beheaded by Herod. John, on the other hand, was the last of the Apostles to die. John is often referred to as, the disciple that Jesus loved.
John, not only wrote the Gospel of John, but first,second, and third John. John also wrote, what is described as the most read book in all the Bible, Revelation. John wrote this last book while in exile on the Island of Patmos. This Book of Revelation, is a book of prophecy. It tells us of the end times, and gives us signs to look for. John was released from Patmos in 96 AD and lived into the next century. John was the only Apostle to die of old age.
Like a lot of readers, that like to read the last chapter first, Revelation tends to be one of the first books read out of the Bible, but also one of the least understood, because a lot of the explanations for Revelation are found in both The Old and New Testament.
Matthew, also called Levi
Matthew was called by Jesus, not long after, Peter, James, John, and Andrew. Matthew was a tax collector, also call a publican, at the time of Christ. Tax collectors were a well educated group of people, though not much is written about Matthews education, he was most likely fluent in writing and speaking both Greek and Aramaic, as well as mathematics.
Tax collectors of the first century, were looked down on by people, much like the I.R.S. is looked down on today. They paid a certain tribute of money to Rome, but also got to keep anything over and above that they could collect. Tax collectors, may have been looked down on, but were wealthy people.
I can imagine the astonishment of the other Apostles, when Jesus said to Matthew, follow me. I would imagine they were even more astonished, that this wealthy tax collector, left it all to follow Jesus.
There is not much recorded about Matthew, except that he was chosen as one of the twelve Apostles. Matthew was a witness to both the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. It is believed the book attributed to him was originally written in Hebrew to the Jewish people, then translated into the Greek. There is not much known about Matthews ministry or death, but in the Book of Martyrs, Matthew is traditionally recorded as being beheaded in India
The Masters Work
Jesus, chose men of various backgrounds and educations to be Apostles, including His betrayer. Of the eleven original Apostles, only John died of natural causes. Most of these men would not have interviewed well as ministers and teachers in their own time, much less modern times. A lot of them probably couldn't write a resume, and had to have others write for them. Yet, the church grew and flourished, under their leadership.
I wonder how many of the Apostles, would even be considered for a pastorship, if they were alive now. I wonder is that a reflection on them or us, as a church.
These men were specifically chosen by Jesus Christ. Would they be hired as Ministers today, you tell me?