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In Christian theology and ecclesiology, the apostles, particularly the Twelve Apostles (also known as the Twelve Disciples or simply the Twelve), were the primary disciples of Jesus according to the New Testament. During the life and ministry of Jesus in the 1st century AD, the apostles were his closest followers and became the primary teachers of the gospel message of Jesus. There is also an Eastern Christian tradition derived from the Gospel of Luke of there having been as many as seventy apostles during the time of Jesus' ministry.
The commissioning of the Twelve Apostles during the ministry of Jesus is described in the Synoptic Gospels. After his resurrection, Jesus sent eleven of them (as Judas Iscariot by then had died) by the Great Commission to spread his teachings to all nations. This event has been called the dispersion of the Apostles.
In the Pauline epistles, Paul, although not one of the original twelve, described himself as an apostle, saying he was called by the resurrected Jesus himself during his road to Damascus event. He later describes himself as "an apostle to the Gentiles".
The term apostle comes from the Greek apóstolos (ἀπόστολος) – formed from the prefix apó- (ἀπό-, 'from') and root stéllō (στέλλω, 'I send, I depart') – originally meaning 'messenger, envoy'. It has, however, a stronger sense than the word messenger, and is closer to a 'delegate'.
Mark 6:7–13 states that Jesus initially sent out these twelve in pairs (cf. Mt 10:5–42, Lk 9:1–6) to towns in Galilee. The text states that their initial instructions were to heal the sick and drive out demons. They are also instructed to "take nothing for their journey, except a staff only: no bread, no wallet, no money in their purse, but to wear sandals, and not put on two tunics," and that if any town rejects them they ought to shake the dust off their feet as they leave, a gesture which some scholars think was meant as a contemptuous threat.
Later in the Gospel narratives, the Twelve Apostles are described as having been commissioned to preach the Gospel to "all the nations," regardless of whether Jew or Gentile. Paul emphasized the important role of the apostles in the church of God when he said that the household of God is "built upon the foundation of apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone."
Calling by Jesus
All four canonical Gospels record the circumstances in which some of the disciples were recruited. According to the Gospel of John, Andrew, who was the disciple of John the Baptist, and another unnamed disciple of John the Baptist, traditionally believed to be John, upon hearing the Baptist point out Jesus as the "Lamb of God", followed Jesus and spent the day with him, thus becoming the first two disciples called by Jesus. For this reason the Eastern Orthodox Church honours Andrew with the name Protokletos, which means "the first called".
Despite Jesus only briefly requesting that they join him, they are all described as immediately consenting and abandoning their nets to do so. The immediacy of their consent has been viewed as an example of divine power, although this is not stated in the text. Another explanation is that some of the disciples may have heard of Jesus beforehand, as implied by the Gospel of John, which states that Andrew was a disciple of John the Baptist, and that he and his brother started following Jesus as soon as Jesus had been baptized.
Matthew describes Jesus meeting James and John, also fishermen and brothers, very shortly after recruiting Simon and Andrew. Matthew and Mark identify James and John as sons of Zebedee. Luke adds to Matthew and Mark that James and John worked as a team with Simon and Andrew. Matthew states that at the time of the encounter, James and John were repairing their nets, but readily joined Jesus without hesitation.
This parallels the accounts of Mark and Luke, but Matthew implies that the men have also abandoned their father (since he is present in the boat they abandon behind them), and Carter feels this should be interpreted to mean that Matthew's view of Jesus is one of a figure rejecting the traditional patriarchal structure of society, where the father had command over his children; most scholars, however, just interpret it to mean that Matthew intended these two to be seen as even more devoted than the other pair, or that Jesus expected the imminent coming of the kingdom.
The Synoptic Gospels go on to describe that later in Jesus' ministry he noticed a tax collector in his booth. The tax collector, called Matthew in Matthew 9:9, and Levi in Mark 2:14 and Luke 5:27, is asked by Jesus to become one of his disciples. Matthew/Levi is stated to have accepted and then invited Jesus for a meal with his friends. Tax collectors were seen as villains in Jewish society, and the Pharisees are described as asking Jesus why he is having a meal with such disreputable people. The reply Jesus gave is now well known: "it is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
Commissioning of the Twelve Apostles
The commissioning of the Twelve Apostles is an episode in the ministry of Jesus that appears in the three Synoptic Gospels. It relates the initial selection of the Twelve Apostles among the disciples of Jesus.
Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness. These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon, also known as Peter, and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed him.— Matthew 10:1–4
He went up the mountain and called to him those whom he wanted, and they came to him. And he appointed twelve, whom he also named apostles, to be with him, and to be sent out to proclaim the message, and to have authority to cast out demons. So he appointed the twelve:[b] Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter); James son of Zebedee and John the brother of James (to whom he gave the name Boanerges, that is, Sons of Thunder); and Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.— Mark 3:13–19
One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God. When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.— Luke 6:12–16
Lists of the Twelve Apostles in the New Testament
Each of the four listings of apostles in the New Testament indicate that all the apostles were men. The canonical gospels and the book of Acts give varying names of the Twelve Apostles. The list in the Gospel of Luke differs from Matthew and Mark on one point. It lists "Judas, the son of James" instead of "Thaddaeus".[a] All listings appear in three groupings, always with the same four apostles in each group. Each group is always led by the same apostle, although the order of the remaining three names within the group varies. Thus, Peter is always listed first, Philip is always listed fifth, and James, son of Alphaeus is always listed ninth. Judas Iscariot is always listed last.
Unlike the Synoptic Gospels, the Gospel of John does not offer a formal list of apostles. Although it refers to "the Twelve", the gospel does not present any elaboration of who these twelve actually were, and the author of the Gospel of John does not mention them all by name. There is also no separation of the terms "apostles" and "disciples" in John.
According to the New Testament there were only two pairs of brothers among the Twelve Apostles: Peter and Andrew, the sons of Jonah, as well as James and John, the sons of Zebedee. Since the father of both James, son of Alphaeus and Matthew is named Alphaeus, according to the tradition of the Eastern Orthodox Church the two were brothers as well. According to the tradition of the Catholic Church based on the writing of the Apostolic Father Papias of Hierapolis the apostles James, son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus were brothers and sons of Alphaeus (named also Clopas) and his wife Mary of Clopas who was the sister of the mother of Jesus. The Golden Legend, compiled by Jacobus de Voragine in the 13th century, adds to the two apostles also Simon the Zealot.
|Gospel of Matthew||Gospel of Mark||Gospel of Luke||Gospel of John||Acts of the Apostles|
|Simon ("also known as Peter")||Simon ("to whom he gave the name Peter")||Simon ("whom he named Peter")||Simon Peter / Cephas "which is translated Peter"||Peter|
|Andrew ("his [Peter's] brother")||Andrew||Andrew ("his [Peter's] brother")||Andrew ("Simon Peter's brother")||Andrew|
|James ("son of Zebedee")||James ("son of Zebedee") / one of the "Boanerges"||James||one of the "sons of Zebedee"||James|
|John ("his [James's] brother")||John ("brother of James") / one of the "Boanerges"||John||one of the "sons of Zebedee" / the "disciple whom Jesus loved"[b]||John|
|Thomas||Thomas||Thomas||Thomas ("also called Didymus")||Thomas|
|Matthew ("the publican")||Matthew / Levi||Matthew / Levi||not mentioned||Matthew|
|James ("son of Alphaeus")||James ("son of Alphaeus")||James ("son of Alphaeus")||not mentioned||James ("son of Alphaeus")|
|Thaddaeus (or "Lebbaeus"); called "Judas the Zealot" in some translations||Thaddaeus||Judas ("son of James," referred to as brother in some translations)||Judas ("not Iscariot")||Judas ("son of James," referred to as brother in some translations)|
|Simon ("the Canaanite")||Simon ("the Cananaean")||Simon ("who was called the Zealot")||not mentioned||Simon ("the Zealot")|
|Judas Iscariot||Judas Iscariot||Judas Iscariot||Judas ("son of Simon Iscariot")||(Judas replaced by Matthias)|
Inner circle among the Twelve Apostles
Peter, James, son of Zebedee, and his brother John formed an informal triumvirate among the Twelve Apostles in the Gospels. Jesus invited them to be the only apostles present on three notable occasions during his public ministry: the Raising of Jairus' daughter, the Transfiguration of Jesus, and the Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane.
At the time of the Early Christian Church as a leading trio among the apostles were recognized Peter, John and James, brother of Jesus, known collectively as the three Pillars of the Church. According to the tradition of the Catholic Church based on the writing of Jerome this James is identified with the apostle James, son of Alphaeus.
Two of the leading triumvirate, Peter and John, were additionally sent by Jesus into the city to make preparation for the final Passover meal (the Last Supper), and were also the only two sent by the collective apostles to visit the newly converted believers in Samaria. If John is to be identified with the disciple whom Jesus loved, then it was also only Peter and John who followed behind Jesus after his capture in the Garden of Gethsemane, and who ran to the empty tomb after Mary Magdalene bore witness to the resurrection of Jesus.
Replacement of Judas Iscariot
After Judas betrayed Jesus (and then in guilt committed suicide before Christ's resurrection, one Gospel recounts), the apostles numbered eleven. The group is referred to as "the eleven" in Mark 16:14 (part of the "longer ending" of Mark) and in Luke 24:9,33. In Acts 1:26 they are "the eleven apostles", in Matthew 28:16 they are "the eleven disciples". When Jesus had been taken up from them, in preparation for the coming of the Holy Spirit that he had promised them, Peter advised the brethren:
Judas, who was guide to those who took Jesus... For he was numbered with us, and received his portion in this ministry... For it is written in the book of Psalms, "Let his habitation be made desolate, Let no one dwell therein", and, "Let another take his office"... So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day he was taken up from us, must become with us a witness to his resurrection.
So, between the Ascension of Jesus and the day of Pentecost, the remaining apostles elected a twelfth apostle by casting lots, a traditional Israelite way to determine the will of God (see Proverbs 16:33). The lot fell upon Matthias.
Paul the Apostle, in his First Epistle to the Corinthians, appears to give the first historical reference to the Twelve Apostles: "For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve" (1 Cor 15:3–5).
Other apostles mentioned in the New Testament
|Person called apostle||Where in Scripture||Notes|
|James the Just, the brother of Jesus||1 Corinthians 15:7, Galatians 1:19||—|
|Andronicus and Junia||Romans 16:7||Paul states that Andronicus and Junia were "of note among the apostles." This has been traditionally interpreted in one of two ways:
If the first view is correct then Paul may be referring to a female apostle – the Greek name (Iounian) is in the accusative and could be either Junia (a woman) or Junias (a man). Later manuscripts add accents to make it unambiguously Junias; however, while "Junia" was a common name, "Junias" was not, and both options are favored by different Bible translations.
In the second view, it is believed that Paul is simply making mention of the outstanding character of these two people which was acknowledged by the apostles.
Historically it has been virtually impossible to tell which of the two views were correct. The second view, in recent years, has been defended from a scholarly perspective by Daniel Wallace and Michael Burer.
The seventy disciples
The "seventy disciples" or "seventy-two disciples" (known in the Eastern Christian traditions as the "Seventy Apostles") were early emissaries of Jesus mentioned in the Gospel of Luke. According to Luke, the only gospel in which they appear, Jesus appointed them and sent them out in pairs on a specific mission which is detailed in the text.
In Western Christianity, they are usually referred to as disciples, whereas in Eastern Christianity they are usually referred to as Apostles. Using the original Greek words, both titles are descriptive, as an apostle is one sent on a mission (the Greek uses the verb form: apesteilen) whereas a disciple is a student, but the two traditions differ on the scope of the words apostle and disciple.
Paul, Apostle of the Gentiles
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|Paul in the Bible|
Although not one of the apostles commissioned during the life of Jesus, Paul, a Jew also named Saul, claimed a special commission from the post-ascension Jesus as "the apostle of the Gentiles", to spread the gospel message after his conversion. In his writings, the epistles to Christian churches throughout the Levant, Paul did not restrict the term "apostle" to the twelve, and often refers to his mentor Barnabas as an apostle.
In his writings, Paul, although not one of the original twelve, described himself as an apostle. He was called by the resurrected Jesus himself during his Road to Damascus event. With Barnabas, he was allotted the role of apostle in the church.
Since Paul claimed to have received a gospel not from teachings of the Twelve Apostles but solely and directly through personal revelations from the post-ascension Jesus, after Jesus's death and resurrection (rather than before like the twelve), Paul was often obliged to defend his apostolic authority (1 Cor. 9:1 "Am I not an apostle?") and proclaim that he had seen and was anointed by Jesus while on the road to Damascus.
Paul considered himself perhaps inferior to the other apostles because he had originally persecuted Christ's followers while thinking he was not in the least inferior to those "super-apostles" and not lacking in "knowledge".
Paul referred to himself as the apostle of the Gentiles. According to Paul's account in his Epistle to the Galatians, James, Peter and John in Jerusalem accepted the "grace" given to Paul and agreed that Paul and Barnabas should go to the Gentiles (specifically those not circumcised) and the three Apostles who "seemed to be pillars" to the circumcised. Despite the Little Commission of Matthew 10, the Twelve Apostles did not limit their mission to solely Jews as Cornelius the Centurion is widely considered the first Gentile convert and he was converted by Peter, and the Great Commission of the resurrected Jesus is specifically to "all nations".
As the Catholic Encyclopedia states, "It is at once evident that in a Christian sense, everyone who had received a mission from God, or Christ, to man could be called 'Apostle'"; thus extending the original sense beyond the twelve.
Of the Twelve Apostles to hold the title after Matthias' selection, Christian tradition has generally passed down that all of the Twelve Apostles except John were martyred. It is traditionally believed that John survived all of them, living to old age and dying of natural causes at Ephesus sometime after AD 98, during the reign of Trajan. However, only the death of his brother James who became the first Apostle to die in c. AD 44 is described in the New Testament. (Acts 12:1–2)
Matthew 27:5 says that Judas Iscariot threw the silver he received for betraying Jesus down in the Temple, then went and hanged himself. Acts 1:18 says that he purchased a field, then "falling headlong he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out".
According to the 18th-century historian Edward Gibbon, early Christians (second half of the second century and first half of the third century) believed that only Peter, Paul, and James, son of Zebedee, were martyred. The remainder, or even all, of the claims of martyred apostles do not rely upon historical or biblical evidence, but only on late legends.
Relics and burial sites
Relics of the apostles are claimed by various churches, many in Europe.
- Andrew: buried in Cathedral of Saint Andrew, Patras, Greece
- Bartholomew: buried in the Basilica of Benevento, Italy, or Basilica of St. Bartholomew on the Island, Rome, Italy
- James the Great: buried in Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain
- James, son of Alphaeus: buried in the Cathedral of St. James in Jerusalem or the Church of the Holy Apostles in Rome.
- John: no relics. The opening of his tomb (in the Basilica of St. John, Ephesus) during Constantine the Great's reign yielded no bones, giving rise to the belief that his body was assumed into heaven.
- Judas Iscariot: buried at Akeldama near Jerusalem (per the Gospel of Matthew and Acts of the Apostles).
- Jude Thaddeus: buried in St. Peter's Basilica under the St. Joseph altar with St. Simon the Zealot; two bones (relics) located at National Shrine of St. Jude in Chicago; other relics claimed by Reims Cathedral and Toulouse Cathedral.
- Matthew: buried in the Salerno Cathedral, Italy.
- Matthias: buried in the St. Matthias' Abbey in Trier, Germany.
- Paul: relics located in the Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls in Rome; the skull located in the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran, alongside the skull of St. Peter.
- Peter: buried in St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, Rome, Italy; the skull located in the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran, alongside the skull of St. Paul.
- Philip: buried in the Church of the Holy Apostles in Rome or possibly Hierapolis, modern Turkey.
- Simon the Zealot: buried in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome under the St. Joseph altar with St. Jude.
- Thomas: buried in the San Thome Basilica in Chennai, India or in the Basilica of St. Thomas the Apostle in Ortona, Italy.
Paul's epistles were accepted as scripture, and two of the four canonical gospels were associated with apostles, as were other New Testament works. Various Christian texts, such as the Didache and the Apostolic Constitutions, were attributed to the apostles. The Apostles' Creed, popular in the West, was alleged to have been composed by the apostles themselves.
Bishops traced their lines of succession back to individual apostles, who were said to have dispersed from Jerusalem and established churches across great territories. Christian bishops have traditionally claimed authority deriving, by apostolic succession, from the Twelve Apostles.
- Apostle (Latter Day Saints)
- Apostles' Fast
- Companions of the Prophet
- Council of Jerusalem
- Council of Twelve Apostles
- Quorum of the Twelve
- Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (LDS Church)
- ""Apostle", Britannica.com". Archived from the original on 3 June 2020. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
- Romans 1:1
- Romans 11:13
- Cross, F.L., ed. (2005). The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-280290-9.
- "Catholic Encyclopedia: Apostles". Archived from the original on 23 January 2018. Retrieved 7 January 2005.
- Miller, Denzil R. (2016). Walking with the Apostles: Forth-Five Days in the Book of Acts. PneumaLife Publications. p. 26.
- Mt 28:19, Mk 13:10, 16:15
- Acts 15:1–31, Galatians 2:7–9, Acts 1:4–8, Acts 10:1–11:18
- Ephesians 2:19–20
- Matthew 4:18–22
- Mark 1:16–20
- Luke 5:1–11
- Jn 1:35–51
- "General Audience of 14 June 2006: Andrew, the "Protoclete" | Benedict XVI". www.vatican.va.
- Jn 1:40–42
- Mt 4:21
- Meier, John P. (1994). Marginal Jew, II. Doubleday. ISBN 978-0385469920.
- Mark 2:17.
- Riley, Harold (1992). The First Gospel. Mercer University Press. p. 47. ISBN 0-86554-409-3.
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- Strauss, David (1860). The Life of Jesus. Calvin Blanchard. p. 340.
- Matthew 10:1–4
- Mark 3:13–19
- Luke 6:12–16
- Mark 3:13–19, Matthew 10:1–4, Luke 6:12–16, and Acts 1:13
- John 6:67–71
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- de Voragine, Jacobus (1275). The Golden Legend or Lives Of The Saints. Retrieved 28 October 2018.
- Stracke, Richard. Golden Legend: Life of SS. Simon and Jude. Retrieved 28 October 2018.
- Matt 10:1–4
- Luke 6:12–16
- Acts 1:13
- John 6:67–71
- John 1:42
- John 11:16John 20:24John 21:2
- Metzger, Bruce M. (2005). A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament (Revised ed.). Hendrickson Publishers. p. 21. ISBN 978-1598561647.
- John 14:22
- Mark 5:37
- Matthew 17:1
- Matthew 26:37
- Galatians 2:9
- "Galatians 2:9 And recognizing the grace that I had been given, James, Cephas, and John--those reputed to be pillars--gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, so that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the Jews". biblehub.com.
- John Saward – Cradle of redeeming love: the theology of the Christmas mystery p18 2002 "St Jerome concludes that St James, son of Alphaeus, and St James, brother of the Lord, are one and the same person.169 But why is James, son of Alphaeus, called our Lord's 'brother'? St Jerome's answer is as follows. In Matthew 13:55 we hear of four 'brothers' of our Lord: James and Joseph, Simon and Jude. Later, in the Passion narrative, St Matthew mentions a Mary who is the mother of James and Joseph (cf Mt 27:56) "
- The brother of Jesus: James the Just and his mission p17 Bruce Chilton, Jacob Neusner – 2001 "Given that James has been identified as the son of Alphaeus, Jerome indicates he cannot explain the connection of Mary the ... Chrysostom (347–407) was first to suggest that James the brother of the Lord is the son of Clopas though ..."
- Lk 22:8
- Acts 8:14
- Jn 18:15–16
- Jn 20:1–10
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- Acts 14:14
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- Luke 10:1–24
- "Disciple". New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on 24 January 2018.
The disciples, in this disciples, in this context, are not the crowds of believers who flocked around Christ, but a smaller body of His followers. They are commonly identified with the seventy-two (seventy, according to the received Greek text, although several Greek manuscripts mention seventy-two, as does the Vulgate) referred to (Luke 10:1) as having been chosen by Jesus. The names of these disciples are given in several lists (Chronicon Paschale, and Pseudo-Dorotheus in Migne, P.G., XCII, 521–24; 543–45; 1061–65); but these lists are unfortunately worthless.
- "Synaxis of the Seventy Apostles". oca.org. Archived from the original on 27 September 2012. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
- Dunn 2003, p. 21.
- Romans 11:13
- Acts 13:2
- cf. Gal 1:12; Acts 9:3–19, 9:26–27, 22:6–21, 26:12–23
- 1 Cor. 15:9
- 2 Cor. 11:5–6
- Rom 11:13
- Gal 2:7–9
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27. In the time of Tertullian and Clemens of Alexandria the glory of martyrdom was confined to St. Peter, St. Paul and St. James. It was gradually bestowed on the rest of the apostles by the more recent Greeks, who prudently selected for the theatre of their preaching and sufferings some remote country beyond the limits of the Roman empire. See Mosheim, p. 81. and Tillemont, Memoires Ecclesiastiques, tom. i. part 3.
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(Candida Moss marshals the historical evidence to prove that "we simply don't know how any of the apostles died, much less whether they were martyred.")6Citing Moss, Candida (5 March 2013). The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom. HarperCollins. p. 136. ISBN 978-0-06-210454-0.
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- Nolland, John (2005). The Gospel of Matthew: A Commentary on the Greek Text. Eerdmans.
- Perkins, Pheme (1998). "The Synoptic Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles: Telling the Christian Story". In Barton, John (ed.). The Cambridge companion to biblical interpretation. Westminster John Knox Press. ISBN 978-0-521-48593-7.
- Perkins, Pheme (2009). Introduction to the Synoptic Gospels. Eerdmans. ISBN 978-0-8028-6553-3.
- Reddish, Mitchell (2011). An Introduction to The Gospels. Abingdon Press. ISBN 978-1426750083.
- Sanders, E.P. (1995). The Historical Figure of Jesus. Penguin UK. ISBN 978-0141928227.
- Theissen, Gerd; Merz, Annette (1998) . The historical Jesus: a comprehensive guide. Translated by Bowden, John. Eerdmans.
- The Navarre Bible. (RSV, Catholic Edition), Dublin: Four Courts Press, 1999.
- Albright, W.F. and C.S. Mann. "Matthew." The Anchor Bible Series. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1971.
- Pope Benedict XVI, The Apostles. Full title is The Origins of the Church – The Apostles and Their Co-Workers. published 2007, in the US: ISBN 978-1-59276-405-1; different edition published in the UK under the title: Christ and His Church – Seeing the face of Jesus in the Church of the Apostles, ISBN 978-1-86082-441-8.
- Carson, D.A. "The Limits of Functional Equivalence in Bible Translation – and other Limits Too." in The Challenge of Bible Translation: Communicating God's Word to the World. edited by Glen G Scorgie, Mark L. Strauss, Steven M. Voth.
- Carter, Warren. "Matthew 4:18–22 and Matthean Discipleship: An Audience-Oriented Perspective." Catholic Bible Quarterly. Vol. 59. No. 1. 1997.
- Clarke, Howard W. The Gospel of Matthew and its Readers: A Historical Introduction to the First Gospel. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2003.
- "Fishers of Men." A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature. David Lyle Jeffrey, general editor. Grand Rapids: W.B. Eerdmans, 1992.
- France, R.T. The Gospel According to Matthew: an Introduction and Commentary. Leicester: Inter-Varsity, 1985.
- Karrer, Martin. "Apostle, Apostolate." In The Encyclopedia of Christianity, edited by Erwin Fahlbusch and Geoffrey William Bromiley, 107–08. Vol. 1. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1999. ISBN 0-8028-2413-7
- Knecht, Friedrich Justus (1910). . A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture. B. Herder.
- Mack, Burton L., The Lost Gospel – The Book of Q & Christian Origins. HarperCollins 1994.
- Manek, Jindrich. "Fishers of Men." Novum Testamentum. 1958, p. 138.
- Schweizer, Eduard. The Good News According to Matthew. Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1975.
- Wuellner, Wilhelm H. The Meaning of "Fishers of Men". Westminster Press, 1967.
- Texts on Wikisource:
- "Apostle". Encyclopedia Americana. 1920.
- "Apostle". Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 2 (11th ed.). 1911. pp. 196–99.
- "Apostles". The New Student's Reference Work. 1914.
- Coppieters, Honoré-Joseph (1913). "Apostles". Catholic Encyclopedia.
- "Apostle". New International Encyclopedia. 1905.
- "Apostle". Easton's Bible Dictionary. 1897.