Bible Studies

A Study of the Apostles
James & John

Matt 10:2-4 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

Simon the Canaanite -fanatical political group of the Zealots

Matthew the publican-A tax collector

The names of the twelve apostles are listed three other places. Mark 3:16; Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13).

Thaddaeus, also called Lebbaeus is apparently the same as Judas the brother of James in Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13

Acts 1:13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.

Zelotes - a Zealot, i.e. (specially) fanatic for Jewish political independence:

Luke 6:14-16 Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew, Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes, And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor.

NOTE: The two James' named as apostles are James the son of Zebedee and his brother John. The other James is the son of Alphaeus. No brother of "this" James is mentioned. Notice it doesn't say James the son of Alphaeus and Judas his brother, like it says of James & John in Matt 10:2-4.

So we wonder who could this third James be, that is the brother of the apostle Judas.

Matt 13:55-56 Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?

Could the apostle Judas the brother of James' be Jesus' brother? We KNOW that later James the brother of Jesus was an apostle.

In each of the three places the order of the twelve differs. The apostle that in Mark was called Thaddeus, in Matthew Lebbeus, whose surname was Thaddeus, is here in Luke 14 called Judas the brother of James. He is claimed to be the same that wrote the epistle of Jude. Simon, who in Matthew and Mark was called the Canaanite, is here called Simon Zelotes,

Jude 1:1 Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

Mark 3:16-19 And Simon he surnamed Peter; And James the son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James; and he surnamed them Boanerges, which is, The sons of thunder: And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Canaanite, And Judas Iscariot, which also betrayed him: and they went into an house.

Boanerges (bo-an-erg-es'); sons of commotion. (uproar-agitation-disturbance)
Thunder-to roar (noisy display-discord-friction)

Mark 10:35-38 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come unto him, saying, Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us whatsoever we shall desire. And he said unto them, What would ye that I should do for you? They said unto him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory. But Jesus said unto them, Ye know not what ye ask: can ye drink of the cup that I drink of? and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?

Mark 10:41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be much displeased with James and John.

Jesus told these two nervy-rude-impolite apostles of His, "Ye know not what ye ask". You don't know what you're talking about".

Luke 9:52-55 And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of.

Face- Arrival. Jesus sent messengers before he arrived at villages on the way to Jerusalem, to acquire provisions and maybe a place to stay the night .The Samaritans could tell his face (direction ) was Jerusalem, and Jews had no dealings with Samaritans.

John 4:9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.

Anyway-Jesus answers these hotheaded loudmouths, James & John. He says. "Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of". You don't know what you're talking about.

When Jesus asked James and John,"can ye drink of the cup that I drink of? and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?", they answered and said "We can" and Jesus said indeed you will (Mark 10:39) . In Gethsemane, Jesus spoke of his death as a "cup"

Mark 14:36 And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt.

The term "baptism" is a figure for suffering and death.

Luke 12:50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened (afflicted- constrained- endangered) till it be accomplished!

Acts 12:1-2 Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. And he killed James the brother of John with the sword.

The apostle James said he could drink of the cup and he was the first to die, as is recorded in the Bible.

The apostle John wrote the Gospel of John and three Epistles. I John, II John and III John, AND the book of Revelation. It is of John that the Bible says.

John 13:23 Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.

John 20:2 Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.

John 21:7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

John 21:20 Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?

John 21:21-24 Peter seeing him saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do?

Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me. Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true.

Christ's reply to this inquiry is "if I choose that he remain till I come, and do not suffer as you must, what is that to you. Mind thou thy own duty, or responsibility. As I told you in the beginning when I first chose you. "Follow Me".

This seems to be a reference of Christ's purpose concerning John. That he should not die a violent death, like Peter, (history has it that Peter died by crucifixion-head down) [maybe this was in part for denying Him three times] but should tarry till Christ himself come for him by a natural death.. Historians tell us that John was the only one of all the twelve that did not actually die a martyr. He was often in danger, in captivity and exile; but he died in his bed in a good old age. Christ calls out some of his disciples to resist unto blood, but not all. Though the crown of martyrdom is bright and glorious, yet the beloved disciple did not have to endure it.

Some understand that Jesus willed that John should not die till after Christ's coming to destroy Jerusalem in 70 A.D .All the other apostles died before that time; but John survived it by many years. It could be that God willed it that one of the apostles should live so long as to close up the canon (writing) of the New Testament, which John did by writing the last verse in Rev., 22:21.

What happened when Jesus was arrested in the garden?

Mark 14:50 And they all forsook him, and fled.

EXCEPT for Peter and John.

John 18:15-18 And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple: that disciple was known unto the high priest, and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest. But Peter stood at the door without. Then went out that other disciple, which was known unto the high priest, and spake unto her that kept the door, and brought in Peter. Then saith the damsel that kept the door unto Peter, Art not thou also one of this man's disciples? He saith, I am not. And the servants and officers stood there, who had made a fire of coals; for it was cold: and they warmed themselves: and Peter stood with them, and warmed himself.

Peter followed afar off, that is, WAY BEHIND.

Matt 26:58 But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end.

Peter was watching from the outside and the apostle John had him brought inside.

Peter was afraid to go inside but John was not. The high priest knew who Jesus' followers were. He knew who John was. OR it could be that Peter tried to go inside but because the leaders didn't know him, he was not allowed in.

But at the cross

Luke 23:49 And all his acquaintance, and the women that followed him from Galilee, stood afar off, beholding these things.

Acquaintance-Those well known to Christ, which surely would be the apostles, were not NEAR the cross, EXCEPT a few.

John 19:25-27 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home

Only five people are named that stood by, or near the cross. This is Jesus' mother Mary and His Aunt, and two other women named Mary, AND the apostle John.

Why did Jesus give the apostle John the charge of caring for His mother, and not his brothers, his mothers’ "real sons"? It could be that it was because His brothers did not believe in Him at the time.

John 7:5 For neither did his brethren believe in him.

You may say that John is bragging on himself as the only gospels mentioning these things about John IS the apostle John. But we can be sure God wants us to know these things because the Holy Spirit of God inspired these writings.

You will notice the name of John, as the Disciple that Jesus loved is not mentioned. He is writing about himself, but he doesn't name himself until the next to the last verse he wrote in the gospel of John

John 21:24 This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true.

All these things written about John that are not included in the other three gospels is explained in the above verse.

This is the disciple, or I am the disciple that wrote these things concerning the apostle that Jesus loved. Even here he refers to himself as a third person. He doesn’t say we know that my testimony is true, he says that his testimony is true.