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How many people were part of the twelve apostles?

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Actaris
910495.  Sun May 20, 2012 2:04 pm Reply with quote

Klaxon answer: 12
Correct answer: 13

After the suicide of Judas a new apostle Matthias was chosen by the remaining apostles by the process of casting lots. On top of this could be asked how many disciples does Jesus have with the answer being about 2 billion as disciple means any follower of the faith.

 
Jenny
910498.  Sun May 20, 2012 2:12 pm Reply with quote

Watch the forthcoming J series to find out if this topic actually makes it into the programme. And in the meantime, welcome to QI :-)

 
exnihilo
910506.  Sun May 20, 2012 2:23 pm Reply with quote

There were 12, and Judas killed himself so they chose a replacement. That's still 12.

Of course the Bible then goes on to name various others as apostles who were not of the original 12 (Paul, Barnabas, James, Andronicus etc.), indeed any number from 12 to 19 is arguable from scriptural evidence.

 
Alfred E Neuman
910652.  Mon May 21, 2012 5:54 am Reply with quote

exnihilo wrote:
There were 12, and Judas killed himself so they chose a replacement. That's still 12.


That's a bit like saying that there's only one American president.

 
Neotenic
910707.  Mon May 21, 2012 9:28 am Reply with quote

I think it's worth pointing out that they only became apostles in Acts - and in the last chapter of all four gospels, they are still referred to as disciples.

The very last paragraph of Matthew is the most instructive, though;

Quote:
Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”


So, the disciples did not become apostles until after Judas and Jesus had popped their respective clogs. Judas was a disciple, but never an apostle.

 
exnihilo
910708.  Mon May 21, 2012 9:30 am Reply with quote

Apologies, that post was deeply unclear! By still 12 I meant that a group designated as the Apostles still contained 12 people. I did go on to say the number could be as high as 19 if you allow for ones who were made later, the point being that if you acknowledge 12 as being wrong then 13 is not right either. 12 is arguable as the number at any one time, whereas many other numbers are arguable as the number ever. However, there's an argument that Christ himself was an Apostle so you'd need to add one to whatever total you settle on.

 
Norman Castle
911785.  Sat May 26, 2012 8:40 am Reply with quote

Neotenic wrote:
I think it's worth pointing out that they only became apostles in Acts - and in the last chapter of all four gospels, they are still referred to as disciples.


From Luke 6

12 One day soon afterward Jesus went up on a mountain to pray, and he prayed to God all night.
13 At daybreak he called together all of his disciples and chose twelve of them to be apostles. Here are their names:
14 Simon (whom he named Peter),Andrew (Peter’s brother), James, John, Philip, Bartholomew,
15 Matthew, Thomas, James (son of Alphaeus), Simon (who was called the zealot),
16 Judas (son of James), Judas Iscariot (who later betrayed him).


So, they WERE called 'apostles' during the ministry, and Iscariot WAS an apostle.


The gospels differ on the names of the twelve.

- Matthew and Mark list Thaddeus instead of Judas son of James.

- John lists a Nathanael among the twelve.

- Luke lists Simon the Cananean, while Matthew and Mark list Simon the Zealot. They are possibly the same person, but it isn't clear.

So, at least 15, maybe 16 apostles named in the Bible.

 
djgordy
911803.  Sat May 26, 2012 10:23 am Reply with quote

St. Paul is regarded as an Apostle even though he wasn't one of the original disciples.

 
mckeonj
911832.  Sat May 26, 2012 1:01 pm Reply with quote

And there's 12 spoons in the set.

 

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