James & John

Two brothers, James and John, were two more of the top three leaders of Jesus disciples. These two were very vocal and Jesus nicknamed them the “sons of thunder.” (Mk 3:17) Both of these brothers and Peter were with Jesus on the mount of transfiguration.

When Jesus was resurrected, James was one of the first disciples to see Jesus. The ministry of James was cut short when he was killed by King Herod. (Acts 12:2) John on the other hand was able to minister for many years and was the only one of Jesus disciples who was not martyred. He was imprisoned on the isle of Patmos for many years until he was released a short while before his death. John was the author of the Gospel Book of John as well as three church letters and the book of Revelation.

John was the elder and apostle to the churches in Asia Minor and especially the city of Ephesus. John was very instrumental in forming the churches in Asia Minor. John’s Gospel differed from the other three by portraying Jesus in his being The Word. This was the focus of what John wrote about Jesus as being the vocal part of the Trinity. It seems that John was the disciple that was closest to Jesus in his earthly ministry.

Of these three leaders, James was least effective in forming the church because he was killed so early in the formation of the Church. It is interesting that the Apostle Paul after his Damascus Road conversion became a strong influence in forming the church along with Peter and John. These three, Peter, John, and Paul wrote most of the N.T. and had the most impact of forming “The Church.” The other disciples of Jesus had their impact but in different ways.


N.T. Main