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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Knights of Columbus Bible Study – Acts of the Apostles: Week 5: The Apostolic Age – Acts 1:13-26

Presenter:  Fr. Antonio O. Moreno

Opening Prayer and Psalm 5: Prayer for Divine Help

The Apostolic Age

The Apostolic age is the history of Christianity and the growth of the Church that is traditionally the period of the Twelve Apostles.  The dating from the Crucifixion of Jesus (c. 30-33 A.D.) and the Great Commission in Jerusalem until the death of John the apostle  (c. 100 A. D.).  The major source for the “Apostolic Age” is the Acts of the Apostles.  During the time period many writings were produced and attributed to the direct followers of Jesus Christ.

-The Catholic Church was built on the foundation of the Apostles as a community of faith, hope, and charity in Jesus Christ. (Rev 21: 9-14)

-Through the Apostles, we come to Jesus himself (MK 1: 17 – “Jesus said to them, Come after me and I will make you fishers of men.”)

-Pope John Paul II in his letter “Novo Millinnio” invites the Church to contemplate the Face of Christ.  “The light of the face of Jesus is reflected on the face of the Church through the Apostles, through their words and witness we receive the truth of Jesus Christ.

Acts 1: 12             “…Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount call Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day’s journey away”.

-Pope Benedict XVI in his book The Apostles states that “the number Twelve refers to the Twelve Tribes of Israel – the re-establish Holy People of God (Ezekiel 37: 15-19; 39: 23-29; 40-48) – the hope of Israel waited their restoration as a sign of the eschatological time. 

-Pope Benedict writes, “On the site of the revelation, “the mount”, taking initiative that demonstrated absolute awareness and determination, Jesus established the Twelve so that, together with him, they are witness and heralds of the coming of the Kingdom of God. 

-“In choosing the Twelve, introducing them into communion of life with himself and involving them in word and works, Jesus wants to say that the definitive time has arrived in which to constitute the new People of God, the people of the Twelve-tribes, which now become the Universal People of God.”

The Twelve –Acts 1: 13-26

What is an Apostle?  = One who is sent out in mission? What is a Disciple?   = refers to a learner or follower (student).

1.       During Jesus’ time on earth, His Twelve followers were called disciples.  They learned from Jesus and were trained by Him.

2.       After the Resurrection and Ascension, Jesus sent the disciples out to be His witnesses now call Apostles.

3.       The term Apostle and Disciple is used interchangeably for the Twelve.

4.       The Twelve Apostles were ordinary men that God used to do extraordinary things.

5.       The Holy Spirit transformed the Apostles into powerful men of God who turned the world upside down through their witness to Jesus Christ.

Who are the Twelve?

1.       Simon Peter =     renamed by Jesus to Peter (meaning rock), his original name is Simon Bar Jonah.  He was a fisherman from Galilee.  He was also known as “Cephas”  (Aramaic)

2.       Andrew = brother of Simon Peter, a fisherman, a former disciple of John the Baptist

3.       James, son of Zebedee = the brother of John the Apostle

4.       John, son of Zebedee = the brother of James, Jesus names them Bo-anergas, “sons of Thunder”

5.       Philip = from Bethsaida of Galilee

6.       Bartholomew = also known as Nathaniel

7.       Matthew = tax collector, also known as Levi

8.       Thomas = Known Judas Thomas Didymus

9.       James, son of Alphaeus = James the Just

10.   Thaddeus = identified with Jude

11.   Simon the Zealot = identified with Simon of Jerusalem

12.   Judas Iscariot = betrayed Jesus *Matthias = replace Judas Iscariot

End of Apostolic Age through the death of the Apostles

1.       Peter = crucified upside-down, Rome AD 64

2.       James, son of Zebedee = beheaded in AD 44, first of the twelve to die

3.       John, son of Zebedee = died of old age AD 100

4.       Andrew = crucified upon a diagonal or X shape cross

5.       Philip = crucified in AD 54

6.       Bartholomew/Nathaniel = flayed alive (skinned) and then beheaded, Derbend on the Caspian Sea

7.       Matthew = killed by an axe in AD 60

8.       Thomas = killed by a spear, India AD 72

9.       James, son of Alphaeus = beaten to death with a club after being crucified and stoned

10.   Jude = crucified

11.   Simon the Zealot = crucified AD 74

12.   Judas Iscariot = hanged himself after betraying Jesus (St. Matthew), falling in a field and bursting open (Acts)

13.   Matthias = stoned and behead

Tombs of the Apostles, the Catholic Church has six of the twelve apostle’s bodies

1.       Peter = St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, Rome, Italy

2.       Andrew = St. Andrew Basilica, Patras, Greece

3.       John, son of Zebedee = Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, Spain

4.       Thomas = Chennai, India

5.       Philip = Denizaliur, Turkey

6.       Bartholomew/Andrew = Baskale monastery, Turkey