Tuesday, February 04, 2003

The Choosing and Training of the Twelve -- Kingdom Leadership Training

This is part 7 of a series covering the choosing and training of the twelve disciples. To start at the beginning, click here.

Core Curriculum

The core curriculum of the twelve disciples was that which was open to all the disciples. What an extraordinary opportunity the men and women who followed Jesus had. The one thing they had, which we will never have is His physical presence. We have His words, but they had His body language. They had His tone of voice. They saw the full context of His words. We have the writings, they had the speaker. What a great gift.

They had His teaching and marveled at the authority that He had. Jesus did not quote the Rabbis. He was bold, "You have heard that it was said ..., but I say to you." You had to trust that Jesus was for real, and let us not think that was easy. To trust Him then was to hear His wisdom and watch Him live it out. By word and model, He taught the people who would hear.

When the Jewish leadership rejected Him, Jesus began to speak in parables to hide His message. To be one of His disciples meant having the inside scoop. Both of these notions are described by Mark.

When he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parables. He said to them, “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those outside, everything is in parables, so that although they look they may look but not see,and although they hear they may hear but not understand,so they may not repent and be forgiven.” (Mark 4:10-12, The Net Bible)

The disciples had the secrets of the Kingdom given to them by trusting Jesus enough to be with Him. They got to hear the parables explained.

The disciples also had ministry internships. First the twelve were sent out two-by-two. At a later time seventy-two were sent out. They heard Jesus teach, heal the sick, and cast out demons. Jesus taught the teachers and now they went forth on their practice runs.

For all this, and it must have been extraordinary, the twelve had more. Over the next days, I will cover the training unique to the twelve. I will show their training as Servant Leaders, take you through the lessons of Advanced Faith, and finally cover the unique intimacy that they had with Jesus.

Wednesday : Servant Leadership


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