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DATE: October 31, 2006


In Africa, it is said that church memberships are miles wide but a skin deep in terms of

biblical understanding. In the West, Collinson observes that “the churches are declining

but theology – serious academic and mainstream orthodox in evaluative commitment

shows no sign of withering on the vine.”1 Both have one common need – the need for

discipleship. This paper will look at the way how Jesus went about discipling those who

were his disciples and learn principles for application in our ministries.

Background Information on the Concept of Discipling

In the ancient world children were initially educated at an early age in their homes.

Parents had the responsibility of ensuring that their children grow up to be useful and

responsible citizens. As they transition to adulthood, they would teach them certain trades

in an apprentice-style. In most cases, they ended up in the occupation of their parents,

learning the skills and knowledge from them. Jesus was the carpenter’s son and in his

early days; he learned the skills of carpentry.

Development of Reading and writing skills (before 3000BCE)

Civilization started in the Mesopotamian valley and it spread to other parts of the world.

The reading culture developed around 3000 BCE. There existed in Sumeria a “tablet

Sylvia Wilkey Collinson: Making Disciples – The Significance of Jesus’ Educational Methods for Today’s
Church. Bletcheley: Patternoster Biblical and Theological Monographs, 2004., Page v.
house where reading and writing were taught and a family-like hierarchy of relationship

prevailed.”2 Those of upper class advanced their learning; “There was a house of wisdom

where higher education was given to younger members of the upper class. There,

presumably, the youthful aspirants for a learned career, seated on benches of stone

without backs, studied mathematics and Astrology, medicine, magic arts and theology

and all the varied branches of ‘the learning” 3 The government offices were as well

associated with these early advances of learning. “Ancient Egyptian education began in a

village elementary school followed by a provisional school. For those people proceeding

to higher education, further study was conducted in a government office associated with

the royal court where future courtiers were tutored by senior officials in the real-life

situations which arose … The education process was extended for those who became

physicians, architects or priests by further apprentice-style learning. 4 Communities

embraced this idea and Crenshaw mentions the existence of a royal school about 1900

BCE. Temples were involved in this too; “there were schools associated with the temples

which were not purely for religious purposes, but also for the apprenticing of those who

would be associated with the production of the wisdom literature.” 5 There is agreement

amongst many scholars that the method of teaching was that of apprentice type:

“Scholars speculate that apprentice-style learning functioned in the royal courts of the

important Mesopotamia cities among sons of priestly class to prepare them for leadership

in the society.”6 Within the Greek society, the same pattern applied. “In the world of

classical Greece, Athenian boys were involved in formal schooling from the age of seven

Colinson, page 11.
Ibid. Page 11
Ibid, page 12
Ibid, page 12.
Ibid, page 11

but only the sons of the elite in their twenties and thirties were able to progress to

advanced studies under the great philosophers. It was these learning relationships of

young adults’ males with older philosophers – teacher which began to be designated as

disciple – master relationship.”7 The emphasis in this relationship was that of a teacher

who had all the superior knowledge and passing it on to the student.

The Method of Recruitment Used in These Early Days

Students would identify a teacher and enroll under his tutelage. They would live together

and it was a practical learning. The Greek philosopher Pythagoras used this method to

train his students. “This learning relationship was usually expressed in communal living.

The Greek philosopher, Pythagoras (c.580 BCE) founded learning communities among

aristocrats of Italy. They preferred to use the term ‘brotherhood’ to describe their

relationship, but the concept of discipleship did operate within these communities.” 8

These philosophers would be cared for and paid by their students, a practice which

Socrates condemns. “Many would consider that the relationship between the great

Athenian philosopher, Socrates (c. 470 – 400 BCE) and his students is best described as

that of master to his disciples. His teaching activities attracted young men seeking for

knowledge and truth. However, Rengstorf claims that Socrates refused to be called a

teacher or to allow those under his tuition to be referred to by the term mathetes. He felt it

did not sufficiently encompass the idea of the fellowship experienced by those who were

striving together for a common goal of learning. Socrates taught that persons had to

discover what is the nature of things for themselves and that the master’s role was more

like that of midwife assisting in the bringing forth of truth. He condemned the Sophists

Colinson, page 12.
ibid, page 13

who had paying disciples, because he did not believe that virtue could be taught and

concluded that the Sophist teachers were therefore charlatans.” 9 The Greek philosopher

Epicurus is said to be the first who may have started a school as an institution, “Epicurus

(c. 340 – 270 BCE) may have been the first to found a school as an institution. However

the teacher-disciple concept was still present, even though his followers honored him as a

god and memorized his sayings at his command.”10

There was an unabashed commitment for disciples to follow the precepts of the teacher.

The death of the teacher did not warrant the death of the philosophies held. “Relationship

among the disciples of the great classical, philosophical teachers were so firm that when

the teacher died these groups did not disintegrate. Sometimes the leader would appoint

his successor or at other times one would emerge from among the followers. However,

the members totally identified with the common cause and teaching, doing everything in

their power to communicate them to others. Thus the communities of disciples were

maintained and traditions were developed to preserve the life of the group.” 11 We

therefore conclude that discipleship concepts were available in the ancient days.

Discipleship in the Old Testament

The term does not appear in the Old Testament but there are relationships that are close to

discipling. Appended below, are some of these relationships:

1. Joshua & Moses: In most crucial events, the name of Joshua surfaced within the

people who were close to Moses. “Joshua was a younger man who accompanied Moses

in his national leadership responsibilities as an assistant. (Ex. 33:11, Deut. 1:38).” 12 He is

a young man whom God brought close to Moses and learn from him. “Joshua came under
Collinson, page 13
Ibid, page 14
ibid, page 14
Ibid, Page 15

Moses’ authority. The older man prayed for him, sent him out, heard his reports back and

encouraged him in leadership tasks. (Ex. 17:9, Numb. 13:16-20; 14:36-38)” 13 Joshua

stayed with Moses for a longer period of time. “Moses shared a close personal

relationship with Joshua for almost forty years and during that time the younger man

observed at close quarters the example of the life of the prophet … whom the Lord knew

face to face. (Deut. 34:10). Joshua grew in his leadership skills and his relationship of

faith in the Lord and is described as being “full of the Spirit of wisdom because Moses

had laid his hands on him. (Deut. 34:9) “ 14 This relationship prepared Joshua to take over

leadership of the Israelites after Moses died

2. Samuel and the Prophets Under Him

Samuel had a group of prophets and he was leading them. (1 Sam. 19:18 -20). There was

a degree of leadership he exercised over them

3. Elisha and Elijah

Prophets appear to have organized themselves and living as groups with a kind of

leadership. Terms of company of prophets indicate this kind of arrangement. (1 Kings

18:4, 13:11; 2 Kings 2:1,4-5). Elisha related to Elijah in such a way that we see marks of


4. Scribal Training

The duty of scribes was to commit to writing the text. “Before exile, families of scribes

preserved the art of reading, writing and transcribing the law. A group of Kenite families

lived at Jabez (1 Chron. 2:55). They transmitted their skills to succeeding generations and

to princes, priests and Levites. These in turn were expected to instruct the people. (2

Colinson, page 15
ibid, page 15

Chron. 15:3; 17:7-9) and make legal judgments based upon the law and traditions. The

association of scribes, priests and Levites occurs a number of times in the pre-exilic

period. (Deut. 17:18, 2 Kings 12:10, 1 Chron. 24:6, 2 Chron. 34:13). 15 We as well trace

apprenticeship type relationships in these groupings.

5. The Wisdom Movement

The prophet Jeremiah identifies three categories of people – the priests, the prophets and

the wise (elders) “In (Jer. 18:18, Ezek. 7:26). “Many scholars believe that the wisdom

literature as it occurred in the Ancient Near East was a product of formal, institutional

master – disciple relationships.”16 These as well exchanged notes and ideas and validated

the outcomes.

6. The synagogue and the Rabbinic Movement

After the Babylonian captivity, the synagogue became an important focus in the Jewish

community. They became a centre of learning “so that they acted as popular universities,

a kind of extra-mural department of the main university, which was the newly built

temple at Jerusalem”17 In the rabbinical schools, there are two Hebrew expressions whose

meanings are close to mathetes. Talmidh (taught one) and Limmudh (taught). Manson

points to the following facts: “The talmid of the rabbinical schools is primarily a student.

His chief business was to master the contents of the written law and the oral tradition.” 18

These rabbinical schools were working within the precincts of the synagogue. “Rabbinic

schools formed in a synagogue or in the temple porches for the purpose of studying the

scriptures, especially the Law. Younger men gathered in an attitude of reverence and

Collinson, page 18
Ibid, page 19
Ibid, Page 19
T. W. Manson. The Teaching of Jesus., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 1963., Page 239

respect to learn as disciples. They were known as talmidim (apprentices) … the basic

concept refers to persons training to be rabbis.”19

Their relationship was that of servitude. “Students of the rabbis served them as slaves and

obeyed them totally, even if meant going against the authority of their own fathers. They

came to the Rabbi requesting permission to be his disciples. They often lived in close

community with him and one another looking after the practical needs of the rabbi, while

he expounded the Law as it impinged upon peoples’ lives and relationships with God and

one another. The rabbi lectured and allowed opportunity for questions and some

discussions. Learners were required to listen and learn his rabbinic pronouncements by

rote so that they became bearers of the tradition.” 20 There was a lot of interest in learning.

“At the time of Herod the Great young Jews came from as far away as Babylonia, Media,

Asia Minor and Egypt to study at the feet of rabbis, Josephus describes young men

gathering around the rabbis like an army. Hillel had eighty pupils and Gamaliel ll (100-

130 CE) is said to have had over a thousand at one time. 21” In this period as well, we see

the discipling and apprenticeship model being used.

7. Inter-Testamental and First Century CE Literature

The Qumran has the concept of discipleship: “The strict ascetic community of Qumran

(c. 150-70 CE) although not using the term mathetes for any of the teaching relationships

which developed, did have a disciple concept in their community. Its founder, the Teacher

of Righteousness, attracted people to him who left their employment, homes and families

in order that they might study the Torah and obey God better by living a strictly

communal life isolated from the rest of their nation. He and his successors guided the

Collinson, page 20
Ibid, page 20
Ibid, page 20

community’s study in master-disciple type relationship and led them to discover what

they believed was the true meaning of the Torah.”22

a. Philo (c25-50CE)

Philo used mathetes fourteen times. “He used the teacher-disciple pattern Abraham, Isaac,

Jacob, Moses and Rebecca, referring to their being disciples of God or as teaching others

by their example as recorded in the books of Moses.”23 He gives different shades of

meanings including a learner as one “ who is instructed by a teacher until he advances to

perfection; an advanced learner who teaches others but has not yet fully achieved the

goal; one taught by God himself, not needing human instruction and who is now fully


b. Josephus (c37-110 CE)

He uses the term fifteen times. The meaning he gives includes “learner and imitator of

another person.”25 The student in this case imitates the teacher.

8. Jewish Practices found in the Gospels

It was a common practice among the Jews to have followers. The Pharisees had disciples:

“Josephus says that the Maccabean ruler, John Hyrcanus, was a mathetes of the Pharisees

… Pharisaic disciples were those who were instructed in, and who were assimilating, the

teaching and practices of the Pharisees.”26 John the Baptist “gathered a group of disciples,

who were interested in Jewish matters of purification (possibly baptism), fasting and

prayer (Mk 2:18; John 1:35-37; 3:22-26). They served John by conveying messages from

and to him while in prison (Matt. 11: 2-7; Luke 7:18-19) and burying his body (Mk.

Collinson, page 21
Ibid, page 21
Ibid, page 22
25Ibid, page 22
Ibid, page 22

6:29). They may have assisted him in baptizing, as did Jesus’ disciples (John 4:1-2).” 27

Bruce mentions that those that followed John were some of his converts whom he

baptized. “Of those who were baptized, a select number formed themselves into a circle

of disciples around the person of the Baptist.”28


The word discipling comes from the Greek mathetes which means a follower.

“This term was first used by Herodotus in the 5th Century BCE and appears

frequently in the classical Greek.”29 In Greek literature, mathetes could denote:

“•A man who was engaged in learning specific knowledge or conduct

from another person with whom he had a personal relationship. This

process of education was intentional and according to set plan.

• An apprentice or person who was committed to a relationship in which

he received instruction in technical or academic information or a particular

skill, from another who possessed superior knowledge. The learner was

unable to dissolve the relationship, but did retain his personal dignity and

some independence.

• An intellectual link between two persons considerably removed in time

whereby one seeks to imitate the other. It referred to an inner fellowship

between two persons and the practical effects of such a relationship. It

could also be used in a specialized way to refer to a pupil in a particular

philosophical school, especially the sophists.”30

Collinson, page 22
Alexander Balman Bruce. The training of the twelve. Edinburgh: T & T Clark., 1901., Page 3
Collinson, Page 12
Collinson, page 12

The term has been defined differently. Sylvia Collinson defines discipling as “a

voluntary, personal relationship between two individuals in community or alone in which

the disciple commits him or herself to learn from the other, by imitation, and

communication and sharing in the life and work of the discipler.”. 31 Edmund Chan

defines disciplemaking as “the process of bringing people into right relationship with

God; and developing them to full maturity in Christ through intentional growth strategies,

that they might multiply the entire process in others also.” 32 Discipleship has maturation

process in mind after one receives Jesus as his savior. “It is all about a certain kind of

person who is radically committed to a certain kind of purpose who through a certain

kind of a process reproduces a certain kind of a product.” 33 It refers to a wider group and

not just the twelve, “The word mathetes (disciple) occurs often in the gospels and it is not

always clear who is in view. Some argue that it designates only those who accompanied

Jesus throughout his public ministry. The related word akolouthein strengthen the

probability that a wider group was in view, even in Mark where this has been

contested.”34 The same word is used for the call of Levi (Mark 2:14), the call of a crowd

(Mark 8:34), the call of a rich young ruler (Mark 10:21) and the cost of discipleship

(Mark 10:28).

How did Jesus Recruit His Disciples?

John the Baptist did a lot of advertising for Jesus. He had talked of the one, who is

coming after me whom he is not worthy to untie his shoes; the one who will baptize them

with the Holy Spirit and so people’s appetites were assuaged by John’s preparatory
Ibid, page 4.
Edmund Chan: Built to Last – Towards a Disciplemaking Church. Singapore: Covenant Resource
Centre., 2001., page 10.
Ibid, page 9
Robert Banks. Reenvisioning Theological Education – Exploring a Missional Alternative to Current
Models. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdman’s Publishing Company, 1999., page 95.

messages. Jesus found a ready audience as a result of this. Bruce mentions of the final

word being with Jesus but we need to take note of these preparatory messages of John.

“While some people come to Jesus asking to become his disciples (Mat. 8:19, 21) it is

still Jesus’ call which is decisive (Mk 8:22). Generally He is the one who issues the

invitation. This follows a clear pattern: as he moves around he sees someone, summons

them, and is followed by them.”35 This was not the cultural way of recruiting. “In a

teacher-pupil relationship in early Judaism the pupil himself usually requested permission

to join the school, he would then carefully learn his master’s teaching” 36 The kind of

relationships he built is very different from the rest. He was “a teacher in a different sense

to his contemporaries.”37 Although he was greater than the disciples, he related to them as

friends. “There is no functional distinction between Jesus and his followers, but very little

functional specialization between these followers … the twelve act together as a

homogenous unit …”38 The religious divide of laity and ordained never surfaced in his

training. Jesus called them and they obeyed his calling.

The Process of Selection

Five of the disciples who went to Jesus were disciples of John the Baptist. (Peter, James,

John, Andrew, and Matthew). “They belonged to the select band who waited for the

consolation of Israel, and anxiously looked for Him who would fulfill God’s promises

and realize the hopes of all devout souls … This fact is decisive to their moral

earnestness.”39 They may be chosen out of the synagogue as observed, “Jesus addresses

this call to a wide range of ordinary people as they are going about their daily lives, not

Robert Banks, page 97
Graham N. Stanton. The Gospels and Jesus. Oxford: Oxford University Press., 1992, page 186.
Robert Banks page 108
Ibid, page 110
Alexander Balman Bruce. The Training of the Twelve. Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1901., page 5

while they are in the synagogue or temple. He reaches out beyond the conventional social

and religious boundaries of his day, including social outcasts (e.g., lepers: Mk 14:3 et al),
and marginal groups (e.g., women; cf Luke 8:1-3 et al.).” But the twelve was a

carefully selected group who were very conversant with messianic issues. Apparently,

these were not idle men. “Modern readers of the gospels usually assume that the disciples

were poor and uneducated. In first century Galilee, fishermen were infact the

businessmen of their community … were affluent enough to have hired servants. The

disciples were reasonably well-educated; as well as their Galilean Aramaic dialect, they

probably used some Greek in order to trade.”41

The process started with prayer “Jesus spends a night in prayer alone in an isolated spot

seeking discernment, takes the initiative and calls them perhaps out of the larger
assembled group.” Three stages of their relationship with Jesus are observed. “The

twelve arrived at their final intimate relation to Jesus only by degrees, three stages in the

history of their fellowship with him being distinguishable. In the first stage they were

simply believers in him as the Christ … In the second stage, fellowship with Christ

assumed the form of uninterrupted attendance on His person, involving entire, or at least

habitual abandonment of secular occupations … the last and highest stage of discipleship

when they were chosen by their master from the mass of his followers, and formed into a

select band to be trained for the great work of the apostleship.” 43 Banks notices three

basic elements. “ (i) The call comes from Jesus and means becoming part of a community

with Jesus. Mathetes normally appears in the plural and refers to a community that is

described in familial terms (Mark 3:35; 10:29-30. When Jesus occasionally uses the word
Robert Banks, page 97
Graham Stanton, page 186
Robert Banks, page 98
Alexander Bruce, pages 11-12

for disciple in singular, he does so generically (Matth. 10:24-25, 42; Luke 6:40; 14:26-27,

33). (ii) It is a call to engage in his mission, Jesus does not call people to be his servant

but to join him in working for the kingdom. Since Jesus’ initial call took place after his

first public preaching (Matt. 4:13, 17; Luke 4:43-44; Mark 1:14-15), it seems to involve

assisting him in calling others to repent and believe in light of the coming Kingdom of

God. (iii) Obedience to the call entails forsaking old ties, not necessarily because Jesus

demands everyone itinerate with him, but because giving primary allegiance to him has a

potentially divisive effect on the families of new disciples. It is an implication of

discipleship rather than mission, of the priorities of the new age rather than adopting a

certain lifestyle.”44 The twelve, who were designated as his Apostles had a high calling

and it is evident that. “Jesus appointed them that they might be with him as his regular

companions (Mark 3:15), traveling with him as witnesses to his ministry. Only when he

sends them out to preach, heal, and exorcise (Mark 3:14; cf Luke 6:13; Matt. 10:1, 7-8)

are they not with him.”45 Weber points out that “The first commitment of discipleship is

to be a disciple of Jesus only.”46

The number twelve is unique: “Jesus choice of this number provides an important clue to

his intention; the twelve were chosen by Jesus as a nucleus of the true or restored twelve

tribes of Israel which he sought to establish.” 47 The twelve had special privileges in that

they had “the meaning of some of Jesus’ teaching explained to them, and at times only

they understood what he is saying Mark 4:11,34 c/f Mark 4;9,23,24.” 48 They also had “a

special place for Jesus’ private instruction of his disciples, either when they are alone
Robert Banks, page 99
Ibid, page 100
Robert E. Weber. Ancient – Future Evangelism – Making Your Church a Faith-forming Community.
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 2003., page 70.
Graham Stanton, page 187.
Robert Banks, page 103

(Mark 4:11, 34) or increasingly when they are journeying together (Mark 8:27, 9:31,

34).”49 There appears to be an inner circle in the way how Jesus related to the disciples.

Being the earlier custodians of the vision of discipleship, they were taught the deeper

meanings of his purposes. In the gospels, we “see how Jesus, both literally and

figuratively, leads his disciples into an even deepening understanding of God’s purposes

in and through him and their part in advancing these purposes.”50

The Core Curriculum of Jesus

The disciples were put through a life changing experience of observing the master teacher

in the way he unveiled truth to them. “In the early period of their discipleship hearing and

seeing seem to have been the main occupation of the twelve.” 51 Jesus’ ministry evolved

around preaching, teaching, exorcism using parables and stories that were very

appropriate. “Discipleship as Jesus conceived it was not a theoretical discipline of this

sort, but a practical task to which men were called to give themselves and all their

energies. Their work was not study but practice.” 52 His classroom was the day to day life.

“Jesus relied mostly on dialogue, not presentation. Yet sometimes he taught in a structural

way (e.g. Mark 6:8-11) and seems to have set some of his teaching in an early memorized

form.”53 He merged his teaching with life. “He also encouraged non-formal (Mark 9:33-

37) learning, often when he was eating and drinking with his companions (Mark 14:17-

21)54. Jesus’ main purpose was not to pass on a text; but to pass on a life. He had a legacy

he wanted to leave with them. These twelve were his hope for reaching the world. “The

purpose of all this was to prepare and train the twelve. In other words, Jesus set up series
Ibid, page 103
Ibid, page 103
Alexander Bruce, page 40.
T. W. Manson. Page 239.
Robert Banks, page 106.
Ibid, page 106

of training sessions and immersion experiences for them. On the contrary, it was not

preparation of the twelve for mission that was uppermost in his mind, but engagement of

the twelve in mission.”55 Therefore, he focused on the whole person. “For Jesus,

instructing his disciples in a way that was spiritually and morally formative was not

everything. He brings out vividly the holistic and communal training the disciples

received as they accompanied Jesus.”56

“To what extent does Jesus ask for imitation of what he does and says? There are

different views. Some argue that “Jesus was their Master not so much as a teacher of right

doctrine, but rather as the master-craftsman whom they were to follow and imitate.

Discipleship was not a matriculation in a rabbinical College but apprenticeship to the

work of the Kingdom.”57 Collinson agrees to that: “Given that one of Jesus’ main tasks

was to disciple his followers and his prime directive to his followers was “to make

disciples of all nations.” Then it may be deduced that the discipling methods which he

used provided an example for them and subsequent generation of disciples to imitate.”58

Others are of the view that “following and imitating are closely related and virtually

synonymous. Others regard discipleship and imitation as distinguishable according to

whether the earthly or heavenly Christ is in view, but as conceptually related around the

idea of faith or conduct. Yet, in the gospels imitation seems to play only a small role.

Jesus directs the disciples’ attention more to realizing the royal will of God and imitating

God’s character and actions. (Matt. 5:43 – 47).”59 In other words, “the imitation of Christ

is only a secondary motif in the gospels, and it is not accidental that the call of the twelve

Ibid, page 111
Ibid, page 110
T. W. Manson, page 240
Collinson, page 5
Robert Banks page 107

omits any reference to it.”60 It’s all about making people to be followers of Christ. “The

concept of discipleship Jesus introduced ran counter to the prevailing notion of the

teacher – disciple relationship. Jesus was not making disciples who would learn of him,

become independent of him and then making disciples of their own. His goal was that his

disciples would make disciples not of themselves but that they would go forth to make

disciples of Jesus.61 Bruce looks at the intention of the training and he says: “The great

founder of the faith desired not only to have disciples, but to have about Him men whom

He might train to make disciples of others: to cat the net of divine truth into the sea of the

world, and to land on the shores of the Divine Kingdom a great multitude of believing

souls.”62 Jesus’ view of the ministry was therefore bi-focal; looking at the current needs

as well as looking into the future and his preparation of these men was complete. God

respects gifts that he gives to individuals and the way how Jesus trained was very

practical; but that does not mean mimicking his style of dress, his mannerisms and

imitating he went about ministry. After all, we see that he addressed people differently

according to their needs and this applied even in the way how he was dealing with his

disciples. The forms and functions have to be clearly discerned.

What Lessons can we Learn form the Way Jesus Trained the Twelve?

1. The place of prayer in the selection. Although there is the limitation of distance in the

attraction of students who come to colleges, a day of prayer for those anticipating coming

to college should be set aside.

2. Jesus had control of choice of disciples: Seminaries need to acquaint themselves to

students before they are accepted into the College. The selection processes need to be re-

Ibid, page 108
Robert E. Weber., page71.
Alexander Bruce, page 13

examined to ensure that we are recruiting those who really have a genuine love for the

Lord and for the people.

3. Jesus charged no fees to his disciples: Sometimes, fees have become a prohibiting

factor for one to go for College studies. There must be a way of subsidizing the costs for

college studies. Involve students in farming to meet the food costs whilst at the seminary.

4. The training included practical Ministry: engage students to practical work before

graduation. Attach great importance on practical work. The classroom was by the seaside,

the mountains, on the road and wherever they were.

5. The disciples were not slaves to Jesus. They were thoroughly trained as servant

leaders. Although they helped in some of the services (Thomas keeping the treasury and

some menial jobs), he never treated them as slaves as was the case during his days. The

relationship between faculty and students has to be such that it is conducive to spiritual


6. The training was spontaneous and holistic, formal and informal, addressing physical

and spiritual needs. It was not a fixed time table but responded to issues as they emerged.

Perhaps there is need in times of national crisis to lay aside the schedules and reflect and

pray over the issues.

7. Character formation was emphasized in the training. Jesus was more concerned about

changing the person and he was a model. The characters he called are varied – from an

ardent follower to a traitor, yet he accommodated all of them.

8. He succeeded in passing on a legacy. He never left a monument but a movement with

values that revolutionized the people of his day and the revolution goes on.


Banks, Robert. Reenvisioning Theological Education Exploring a missional Alternative

to Current Models. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdman’s Publishing

Company, 1999.

Bruce, Alexander Balman. The training of the Twelve. Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1901.

Chan, Edmund. Built to Last. Towards a Disciplemaking Church. Singapore: Covenant

Resource Centre, 2001.

Collinson, Sylvia Wilkey. Making Disciples – The Significance of Jesus’ Educational

Methods for Todays’ Church. Bletcheley: Patternoster Biblical Monographs, 2004.

Manson, T. W. the teaching of Jesus. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1963.

Stanton, Graham N. The Gospels and Jesus. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992.

Weber, Robert E. Ancient – Future Evangelism – Making Your Church a Faith-forming

Community. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 2003.