The Apostles – Becoming Unified Through Diversity

Lesson 4: “Andrew - A Prominent Man Who Was Willing to Put Others First”


“We have found the Messiah!” John 1:41


Big brother's shadow

·        Andrew was often known as "Peter's brother" (John 6:8; Matt. 4:18, 10:2; Luke 6:14). I wonder how Andrew felt, always being in Peter's shadow (see Acts 5:15) John had to contend with that with James, but unlike the "Sons of Thunder", Andrew was quieter and more spiritual

·        We first meet Andrew near Bethany (John 1:28) a ways from his hometown of Bethsaida (1:44) Andrew was there because he had already become a disciple of John the Baptist (1:35,40) Many people had heard of John (Mark 1:5), and Andrew was drawn to John's message (Mark 1:14)

·        John spoke of one to come (1:15,23) Andrew must have wondered whom John was talking about. Andrew soon found out (1:35,36) At this point, Andrew started to follow Jesus (1:37), and eventually spent the day with Jesus (1:39)

·        After this experience, the first thing Andrew did was to go tell his brother Peter that they had found the Messiah! (1:41) From the beginning, we see Andrew spiritually tuned to the Lord


A traumatic experience

·        Andrew's spiritual fervor is a contrast to Peter, James and John. Andrew traveled a ways from his home to follow John, and then was interested enough to follow Jesus and spend time with him. However, Andrew would soon face a painful experience.

·        Because John confronted Herod about his adulterous affair with Herodius, King Herod and John imprisoned (Matt. 4:12; 14:3-5) After John was imprisoned, his disciples seemed to scatter. Andrew returned to Galilee. Even Jesus went to Galilee (Mark 1:14). There, Peter, James, John and Andrew probably had many chances to hear Jesus teach and preach. It was there in Galilee that Jesus called these four as disciples (Matt. 4:18-19) Again, think of the motivations that each of these four men had when they decided to follow Jesus


A gradual demotion

·        In Mark 1:21-39, Jesus was staying in Andrew's home. There Jesus healed Peter's mother-in-law. From there Jesus slipped away to pray, and it was Peter who led a search for him (Mark 1:35) From this point, Peter begins to take the reigns of leadership with the disciples.

·        Consider what Andrew had to struggle with. He was the first to become convinced that Jesus was the Messiah. He seemed to be the most spiritual. He was the one who brought Peter to Jesus. Andrew started out being listed second in the list of apostles (Matt. 10:2, Luke 6:14) But as we've seen, Jesus chose Peter, James and John as his inner circle. From second to fourth…

·        Yet, we never see Andrew complain about his position. Instead, we see evidence of his faith growing. (See John 6:7-9) Another time, we see Andrew bringing others to Christ (John 12:20-22)

·        Sometimes, Andrew was with the inner circle (Mark 13:2-4) Andrew was a good example of what Jesus was referring to in Matthew 20:25-28


2 Principles


#1) Jesus needs many people like Andrew, true servant leaders who will build His church

#2) Some of the strongest and most effective people in Christian ministry are behind the scenes


For next week read John 1:43-45; John 6:1-13; John 14:1-11