David Joel Hamilton

In many ways it [the 12 disciples] was an unlikely team. Among them was Judas Iscariot. Not only was Judas known to be a thief (Joh 12:6), but we are told that he indignantly chastised his team leader – Jesus! – in public (Joh 12:4-5). That must have created some interesting team dynamics! But that was not all. Jesus had picked both Matthew (who, as a tax-collector, was a pro-Roman collaborator) and Simon (who, as a zealot, was an anti-Roman revolutionary) to be on his team. They must have had some heated arguments coming from opposite sides of the political spectrum! Even so, Jesus opted to minister with a team, rather than go it alone. He saw diversity not as a liability but as an asset, providing a unique opportunity for “sandpaper discipleship,” as one rubbed against another, smoothing off the rough edges. The unlikely love between natural enemies would be a powerful witness to the transforming power of the gospel. He taught his team, “Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples” (Joh 13:35).