September 23, 2020
Jesus summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness (Matthew 10:1).
There were many disciples who followed Jesus from the beginning of His ministry, but He specifically chose 12 men to be with Him, to be taught and trained by Him, empowered by Him, and sent by Him to spread the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. Why 12?
The number 12 is a significant number in the Bible. It is found 187 times in Scripture. The Jews believed it signified the most perfect number, symbolizing God’s power and authority. Numerologists believe it signifies God’s government in the earth. The people of God were formed into 12 tribes in the Old Testament and the ministry of the Kingdom was given to 12 apostles in the New Testament. There were:
• 12 princes were born to Ishmael, the father of the Arab nation
• 12 sons were born to Jacob, forming the 12 tribes of Israel
• 12 spies sent by Moses into the land of Canaan
• 12 stones were included in Aaron's breast plate
• 12 fountains of water were found in the wilderness
• 12 bronze oxen formed the base of the molten sea in Solomon's temple
• 12 large stones were taken from the Jordan River to form an altar
• 12 gates were in Ezekiel's temple
• 12 disciples were called by Jesus from the crowds
• 12 years a woman was plagued by an issue of blood that Jesus healed
Myron Augsburger makes a profound statement, “The King’s ministry is the creation of a people of God.” That was true with the 12 Tribes of Israel in the Old Testament, and the 12 Apostles in the New Testament. From the masses who were interested, curious, or captivated by Jesus, He chose 12 who would be taught the Gospel, trained in ministry, and sent out into the world to bring in the harvest of souls into the Kingdom of God.
Through the years those 12 men have grown into a spiritual army numbering in the millions. The harvest was, and is still plentiful. Continue to pray the Lord of the harvest that He will send workers into the harvest today!
“Lord Jesus, continue to increase Your Kingdom by calling, equipping, and sending men, women, boys, and girls out into the highways and hedges, compelling people to come into Your Kingdom by grace through faith in You as Lord and Savior. May we never retire from Your harvest, but continue on in faith until You return. To Your honor and glory I ask, Amen.”