Matthew 10:2 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 10:2, NIV: These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John;

Matthew 10:2, ESV: The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;

Matthew 10:2, KJV: Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;

Matthew 10:2, NASB: Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew; and James the son of Zebedee, and his brother John;

Matthew 10:2, NLT: Here are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (also called Peter), then Andrew (Peter's brother), James (son of Zebedee), John (James's brother),

Matthew 10:2, CSB: These are the names of the twelve apostles: First, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;

What does Matthew 10:2 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

For the first time in his book, Matthew is listing the twelve men Jesus has called out to be His special disciples. Jesus has given them authority, as His representatives, to operate with His power in casting out demons and healing every kind of disease and affliction (Matthew 10:1).

Now Matthew uses a different word to identity this group. He calls them "apostles," translated from the Greek word apolstolōn, which means a delegate or messenger. The term specifically implies someone "sent out" on behalf of their master. In the business world of the time, an apostolos might be given the authority to buy and sell on behalf of an owner or to give specific orders in his name. These apostles will do the same, casting out demons, healing the sick, and teaching about the kingdom of heaven—all in the name of Jesus. Their relationship to Jesus goes beyond that of mere disciples, or students, of the Master. Jesus has elevated this group as His official "sent ones."

Matthew lists each of the apostles by name. Similar lists are found in Mark 3:16–19, Luke 6:13–16, and Acts 1:13. The gospel of John describes Jesus calling many of these men, but he does not compile them into a list.

Matthew's list (Matthew 10:2–4) presents the Twelve in sets of two, probably because these were the pairs that were sent out by Jesus to the towns and cities of Israel. Matthew begins with the two sets of brothers: Simon, named Peter by Jesus (John 1:42), and his brother Andrew, followed by James and John, two sons of Zebedee.

Peter and Andrew were fishermen. They were in the act of fishing when Jesus called them (Mark 1:18–20). Peter would become the most vocal leader of the Twelve. Andrew had previously served as a disciple of John the Baptist before being called by Jesus (John 1:40).

Jesus called James and John to follow Him on the very same day as Peter and Andrew while they were in a fishing boat with their father Zebedee. They also followed immediately (Matthew 4:21–22). Peter, James, and John became Jesus' most-trusted inner circle, which might be why they are mentioned first in most lists of disciples.