The 12 Apostles of Jesus, or disciples as they were more often referred to, were a collection of plain, common, everyday folks. They were not of the rich or famous, they were not from the teachers of the law or of the Pharisees. No, they were selected, hand-picked by Jesus to let the world know of God’s love. To eventually carry on and grow the Christian religion, spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ.
The training period for this lifelong missionary work was a short three years. Jesus knew the timetable and that He only had a short time to show and instruct these twelve. When the time came for Jesus to depart He did assure them that once He was with the Father, that He would send to his disciples the Holy Spirit to guide them and provide them with gifts to help them carry out their work in spreading the Good News.
After that short training period with Jesus and with the help and guidance of the Holy Spirit, this group of twelve Disciples was sent out, by Jesus just prior to His ascension, “to be My witnesses, telling people about Me everywhere, in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth”. (Acts 1:8) Judas Iscariot was replaced by Matthias.
Although these 12 Apostles were huge when it comes to spreading the Good News, the Apostles Paul was equally effective in spreading the Word to the Gentiles. Paul is also the author of a majority of the New Testament. All this from someone who was previously persecuting and killing Christians. It just goes to show that when God has a plan for your life He will redirect you, so don’t fight it.
Besides Paul, there were many followers of Jesus to carry on the message. Evangelists, Apostles, teachers, missionaries and church leaders. The growth and conversions were enormous, with the guiding force of the Holy Spirit.
Visit the Disciples Page.