In the Bible there was a very important group of men called the Disciples. Disciple means “learner” and they were probably given this name because Jesus had called them to follow him and during this time they learned many things from him. There were twelve men in the group and their names were Simon Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, Simon, Judas Iscariot, James, and Judas. There were also men called Apostles which means “one who is sent out”. They were given this name because after Jesus left they were to continue the work of spreading the gospel of Christ.
Looking at a few of the Apostles we see that Simon Peter was known for the time during Pentecost when he was preaching to the people with many languages and they could all understand what he was saying. This symbolized the unity of the different peoples because at the time the Jews believed they were the only chosen. Peter wrote two books of the Bible before his death sometime around 64-67 AD.
James and John were brothers. They were known as “the sons of thunder” because of their fiery tempers. James was martyred and John died of old age sometime after 98 AD.
Philip spread the Word of God to Ethiopia by teaching an Ethiopian Eunuch. After he taught this man, he sent him back to Ethiopia to preach God’s Word in his country.
Paul (whose name had been changed from Saul) started out as an man who persecuted Christians. God changed his heart and he wrote many books of the Bible and spread God’s Word greatly. Paul was a prisoner in Rome and was probably martyred by Nero.
Even though all of the persecution hurt God’s church he used these men to spread the Word. People found it much more preferable to the Roman religion and it flourished. God used these men to show his grace and spread his Word and this still applies today when we read about them.