I have often thought of myself as weak, timid and insignificant. In fact, this is the story of my life.
Do you have a similar story?
Jesus began His public ministry in the year 27 AD. He began by picking twelve men to walk with Him.
One was a despised tax collector. Another was a zealot. Several were fisherman. All were not worthy to be chosen for such a commanding job. Yet, it didn’t matter to Jesus.
As time went on, it’s clear that Jesus singled out three of the twelve for deeper intimacy. Peter, James and John – the three fishermen – were taken into Jesus’ inner-circle. On several different occasions, He invited them to go further with Him.
Yep it’s true. And these three witnessed unbelievable things the other nine did not.
How amazing is that?
They may have felt weak, timid and insignificant. But in Jesus’ eyes, they were perfectly suited to be in His inner-circle. He always chooses carefully!
Being asked to follow Jesus was life-changing. But being invited into Jesus’ inner-circle? Well, that was a WOW experience. And something that surely prepared them for their future kingdom work.
Let’s take a brief look at each inner-circle opportunity and what these three disciples witnessed (you may want to read each story as you follow along with me):
The FIRST is found in Mark 5:21-43 – The raising of Jairus’ daughter.
Imagine standing by Jesus’ side as He raised this little girl from the dead.
Here’s what I envision: Inside the house, victory flourished. Outside the house, defeat was everywhere. Inside the house, hope blossomed. Outside the house, hopelessness abounded. Inside the house, peace flourished. Outside the house, commotion wreaked havoc.
Peter, James and John confronted the full power of God on this day!
The three inner-circle disciples surely experienced an awe moment the other nine only heard about. No doubt, their belief about Jesus only soared.
The SECOND is found in Matthew 17:1-8 – the mountain where Jesus transfigured before them.
The word transfigure is an interesting word. The Greek work is “metamorpho” and it means to transform, literally or figuratively, or to change. The prefix “meta” means to change and the “morphe” means form. In essence, to transfigure would be to change the outward so that it matched the inward reality. Jesus’ true identity, as the Son of God or God Himself, was veiled in His human body. The transfiguration provided the disciples a glimpse into the true nature of Jesus Christ.
Peter, James and John witnessed the lavish display of God’s glory on this day!
No doubt, this mountaintop experience only catapulted their faith. Something tells me that they were never the same. Again, the other nine disciples only heard about it.
The THIRD is found in Mark 14:32-42 – the garden of Gethsemane.
After dinner on His final night before His arrest, Jesus and His disciples made their way to the Garden of Gethsemane, where He would spend the night in prayer.
Peter, James and John were invited to go further into the garden with Jesus. They were tired. They fell asleep several times that night. But it’s pretty clear that they caught pieces of Jesus pouring out His heart to His Father.
They heard Jesus call His Father Abba. The word Abba is the Aramaic word for “dear father.” Some translate it as “Daddy.” Consequently, Jesus is revealing that God is not just a mighty God in control of the universe, but He is our Father who longs for His children to seek a personal relationship with Him.
Peter, James and John absorbed the deep intimacy between Jesus and His Father on this night!
These three unlikely candidates were influential pillars of the early church. The great miracles and revelations they witnessed while being in Jesus’ inner-circle gave them greater ability to carry out the work before them.
So, here’s the answer to our weakness, timidity, and insignificance…
Get in Jesus’ inner circle. And stay there.
The closer we walk with Jesus, the more power, confidence and significance we’ll have. And Jesus will pour out His blessings in abundance, we’ll bring more glory to God, and we’ll have much more fruitful ministries.
The desire of your Savior is that you would walk in deep intimacy with Him.
For more information on this topic, please consider getting our Peter: From Fisherman to Follower Bible study.
Love and blessings,
Upcoming Bible study – January 2016
Joshua – Heaven’s Mighty Warrior