Church of Christ
Locks Cross Roads
1) Matthew 10 - Jesus calls twelve disciples
Matthew 10:1 - And He called unto Him His twelve disciples. In order to better understand this call (invitation) it
would be helpful to see the various "calls" of Jesus, to which the Apostles had responded.
1) Their first invitation to become disciples (John 1:35-2:2)
2) His call to be companions in travel with Him with more specific purpose to learn evangelism (Matthew 4:18-22
and Matthew 9:9).
3) Their election to Apostleship (Mark 3:13-19; Luke 6:12-17)
4) Now, this first specific mission as Apostles (Matthew 10)
He gave them authority: this is a declaration of deity. Jesus can share the very authority and power of God without
any apparent relationship to the Holy Spirit. How Jesus did this is not part of the text, but the unquestionable fact is
that He did.
"Authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of disease and all manner of sickness."
This summary of the work of the Apostles introduces the chapter.
Notice the difference between authority (here) and power (Luke 9:1). The former word gives the right to the
Apostles to command that demons obey them, while the latter provides the miraculous supernatural force to enforce
The Jewish exorcists had neither power nor authority. They made elaborate efforts, which usually failed. The
possession and use of power and authority would be the obvious signal to all Galilee that the Apostles were not
magicians or common exorcists, but men from God.
By making this statement, Matthew tells that the Apostles had not worked any miracles before this moment, they
were assistants to Jesus.
Matthew 10:2-4 Mark 3:13-19 Luke 6:12-16 Acts 1:13
Andrews his brother
James of Zebedee
John his brother
James of Alphaeus
Simon the Cananaean
James the son of Zebedee. Although his brother John is better known in the Gospels, as well as in the Acts, James
is mentioned first here, since, it is thought, he was the older. John is described as James' brother.
Matthew 10:3 - Philip of Bethsaida (John 1:44), an early disciple of John the Baptist, brought Nathanael to the Lord
Bartholomew is possibly the surname (Bar Tolmai = "son of Tolmai") for Nathanael of Cana in Galilee. The
arguments backing this identification of two names with one man are:
1) Nathanael is never mentioned by the Synoptic Gospels, while Bartholomew is never mentioned by John, who
implies that Nathanael was one of the twelve (John 21:2)
2) In the Synoptic, Philip is closely connected with Bartholomew (see lists of the Apostles), and in John with
Nathanael (see John 1:45 and following). It was Philip who brought him to Christ.
3) Most of the other Apostles have two names; why not Nathanael Bar - Tolmai?
James the son of Alphaeus. Arguments for Alphaeus and Clopas are the same.
1) This James of Alphaeus is thought to be identifiable with James the Little (Mark 15:40).
2) We see four women at the cross and identify Mary, the mother of James the Little and Joses (Mark 15:40)
with Mary of Clopas (John 19:25).
3) the name "Clopas" is linguistically and personally to be identified with Alphaeus.
4) and if Clopas be admitted to be Joseph's brother, Jesus had relative in His followers, according to the
testimony of Hegesippus cited by Eusebius, a first century writer.
Thaddeus is the same as Judas of James, as a comparison of the lists of the Apolstles shows, Matthew and Mark
always using the former name; Luke consistently adopting the latter. So it is "Judas Thaddaeus of James."
Matthew 10:4 - Simon the Cananaean is just Hellenized Hebrew for Simon the Zealot.
This group assembled by Jesus was a diverse group. Simon the Cananaean was a former guerrilla fighter, sworn to
kill on sight any Jew who had dealings with the despised Romans. One Jew whom Simon would have killed on sight
was our author, Matthew! Matthew quietly inserts his own name in the roster of the Twelve which includes the name
of Simon the Cananaean, his one-time, would-have-been assassin! Matthew reminds his readers, that the disciples
had nothing in common with each other except their common loyalty to Jesus Christ.