When we think of Jesus and his disciples, we often picture them traveling together, preaching the gospel to crowds, and performing miracles. But have you ever wondered how long Jesus taught his disciples before he sent them out to do these things on their own?
The answer can be found in the book of Mark. In Mark 3:13-19, we read that Jesus called his disciples and appointed twelve of them to be apostles.
Then in verse 14, it says that he “appointed them to be with him.” This means that Jesus spent time teaching and training his disciples before sending them out to do ministry on their own.
But how long did this training period last? The Bible doesn’t give us an exact timeframe, but we can make some educated guesses based on what we know about Jewish culture at the time.
In Jewish culture, it was common for rabbis (teachers) to have disciples who would follow them and learn from them. The length of time a disciple spent with a rabbi varied depending on the rabbi’s teaching style and the disciple’s progress. Some disciples only spent a few months with their rabbi, while others could spend several years.
Based on this cultural context, it’s likely that Jesus spent at least several months teaching his disciples before sending them out. We also know from other passages in the Gospels that Jesus continued to teach his disciples throughout their time together.
One example of this is found in Matthew 16:13-20. In this passage, Jesus asks his disciples who they believe he is.
Peter responds by saying “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus then commends Peter for this confession and says that he will build his church on this rock (meaning Peter’s confession). This conversation shows us that even after spending time with Jesus and hearing him teach, his disciples were still learning more about who he was and what he came to do.
Overall, we can conclude that Jesus likely spent several months teaching his disciples before sending them out to do ministry on their own. During this time, he would have taught them about the kingdom of God, how to preach the gospel, and how to perform miracles. But even after they were sent out, the disciples continued to learn from Jesus and grow in their understanding of who he was.
In conclusion, while we may not know exactly how long Jesus taught his disciples before sending them out, we can be sure that he took the time to train them and equip them for ministry. As modern-day followers of Jesus, we can learn from his example and strive to also train and equip those around us for God’s work.