The Ordination of the Twelve






JUST before noon on Sunday, January 12, A.D. 27, Jesus called the apostles together for their ordination as public preachers of the gospel of the kingdom. The twelve were expecting to be called almost any day; so this morning they did not go out far from the shore to fish. Several of them were lingering near the shore repairing their nets and tinkering with their fishing paraphernalia.

As Jesus started down the seashore calling the apostles, he first hailed Andrew and Peter, who were fishing near the shore; next he signaled to James and John, who were in a boat near by, visiting with their father, Zebedee, and mending their nets. Two by two he gathered up the other apostles, and when he had assembled all twelve, he journeyed with them to the highlands north of Capernaum, where he proceeded to instruct them in preparation for their formal ordination.

For once all twelve of the apostles were silent; even Peter was in a reflective mood. At last the long-waited-for hour had come! They were going apart with the Master to participate in some sort of solemn ceremony of personal consecration and collective dedication to the sacred work of representing their Master in the proclamation of the coming of his Father’s kingdom.





--Presented by the Midwayer Commission, from the Urantia Papers.





Preliminary Instructions
Before the formal ordination service Jesus spoke to the twelve as they were seated about him:


The Ordination
Jesus now instructed the twelve mortals who had just listened to his declaration concerning the kingdom to kneel in a circle about him.


The Ordination Sermon
You are not now as men among men but as the enlightened citizens of another and heavenly country among the ignorant creatures of this dark world.


You Are the Salt of the Earth
In Jesus’ time salt was precious. It was even used for money.


Fatherly and Brotherly Love
From the Sermon on the Mount to the discourse of the Last Supper, Jesus taught his followers to manifest fatherly love rather than brotherly love.


The Evening of the Ordination
Sunday evening, on reaching the home of Zebedee from the highlands north of Capernaum, Jesus and the twelve partook of a simple meal.


The Week Following the Ordination
During this week of rehearsing, Jesus many times repeated to his apostles the two great motives of his postbaptismal mission on earth:


Thursday Afternoon on the Lake
Thursday afternoon Jesus went out from the shore in a boat with Peter, James, and John to talk over the affairs of the kingdom.


The Day of Consecration
The Master’s consecration charge was: “Go into all the world and preach the glad tidings of the kingdom. Liberate spiritual captives, comfort the oppressed, and minister to the afflicted."


The Evenng after the Consecration
That evening while teaching in the house, for it had begun to rain, Jesus talked at great length, trying to show the twelve what they must be, not what they must do.


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