Summary: Here is the mysterious person who leaned on Jesus at the last supper, the only one of the 12 to die a natural death, and who was vouchsafed with the greatest prophetic insight of any person in Scripture.
THE 12 APOSTLES:
JOHN SON OF ZEBEDEE
1. Rabbi Levy was walking home from synagogue one Sabbath when he saw Issy, a leader in his congregation, going into ‘The Chinese Crab’ restaurant.
2. As he looked through the window, Rabbi Levy saw Issy order a plate of shrimp, lobsters and crabs (all of which are forbidden). Issy picked up his chopsticks and started eating. 3. Rabbi Levy burst into the restaurant and confronted him. "Issy, just what do you think you are doing, coming in here and ordering this non-kosher food? You’re not only violating all the dietary laws, but you also seem to be enjoying this food!"
4. "Rabbi," says Issy, "did you see me enter this establishment?" "Yes."
5. "And did you see me order this food?" "Yes."
6. "And did you see the waiter bring the food to me?"
"Yes." "And did you then see me eat the food?" "Yes."
7. "Then I don't see a problem, rabbi. Everything was done under full Rabbinical Supervision!"
B. TEXT & THESIS
1. Mark 3:13-17; “13 Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him. 14 He appointed twelve that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach 15 and to have authority to drive out demons. 16 These are the twelve he appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter), 17 James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means “sons of thunder”).”
2. We’re going to look at an enigma, a person who is the most mysterious of all the 12 Apostles: the Apostle John.
3. He is the mysterious person who leaned on Jesus at the last supper, the only one of the 12 to die a natural death, and who was vouchsafed with the greatest prophetic insight of any person in Scripture.
4. The title of this message is “The 12 Apostles of Jesus: John the Son of Zebedee.”
I. GENERAL INFORMATION
1. John (Heb. Yohanan- ‘Jehovah is gracious’), son of Zebedee and Salome, brother of James, the Apostle. He was a fisherman who lived in Bethsaida, Capernaum and Jerusalem.
2. He came from a wealthy family because 1). his father had hired servants in his fishing business (Mark 1:20), 2). his mother Salome was a main financial contributor to Jesus (Lk. 8:3), and 3). John was personally known to the high-priest Caiaphas (John 18:15-16).
B. MINISTRY HISTORY
2. He was a man of action – ambitious (Mk. 10:37), fiery (Lk. 9:54) and a man with an explosive temper, hence the name “Boanerges, which means ‘son of Thunder’ (Mk. 3:17). John, however, mellowed with time. In the latter part of his life, he became known as the “Apostle of love.”
3. John followed Jesus, after His arrest, to Caiaphas’ house, entered and stayed during the trial there. He was the only one of the apostles present at the crucifixion.
II. THE DISCIPLE WHOM JESUS LOVED
John never mentions himself in his gospel except as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” In his epistles he calls himself “The Elder;” 2 Jn. 1 & 3 Jn. 1. It’s apparent that he was very close to Jesus.
A. MORE LIKELY TO GET AN ANSWER THAN PETER
John 13:23 One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him. (Q – Who would betray Jesus.)
B. JESUS COMMITTED HIS MOTHER TO JOHN
John 19:26, “When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son.” It’s thought that John never left Jerusalem until after the death of Mary.
C. FIRST TO RECOGNIZE JESUS, 2ND MIRACULOUS CATCH
John 21:7 “Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’” Peter then jumped into the water.
D. RUMORED THAT HE WOULD NEVER DIE
John 21:20 Peter turned and saw that the disciple whom Jesus loved was following them….23 Jesus did not say that he(I) would not die; he only said, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?”
III. THE DYNAMIC DUO OF ACTS
Mentioned in combination with Peter 13X in Acts.
A. EXPERIENCED PENTECOSTAL FIRE
Acts 1:13 When they arrived, they went upstairs to the room where they were staying. Those present were Peter, John, James and Andrew; Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew; James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James.
B. WHO HEALED THE LAME MAN AT BEAUTIFUL GATE? PETER & JOHN!
Acts 3:1 [ Peter Heals a Lame Beggar ] One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer—at three in the afternoon.