Mark 3:14

He appointed twelve (epoihsen dwdeka). This was a second selection out of those invited to the hills and after the night of prayer and after day came ( Luke 6:13 ). Why he chose twelve we are not told, probably because there were twelve tribes in Israel. It was a good round number at any rate. They were to be princes in the new Israel (cf. Matthew 19:28 ; Luke 22:30 ; Luke 21:14 Luke 21:15 ). Luke ( Luke 6:13-16 ) also gives the list of the twelve at this point while Matthew ( Matthew 10:1-4 ) postpones giving the names till they are sent out in Galilee. There is a fourth list in Acts 1:13 . See discussion of the names of the apostles on "Mt 10:1" and pp. 271-3 of my Harmony of the Gospels for Students of the Life of Christ. The three groups of four begin alike (Simon, Philip, James). There are some difficulties. Whom he also named apostles (ou kai apostolou wnomasen). Margin of Revised Version, the text of Westcott and Hort after Aleph, B, C, etc. Genuine in Luke 6:13 and probably so here. The meaning is that Jesus himself gave the name apostle or missionary (apostellw, to send) to this group of twelve. The word is applied in the New Testament to others besides as delegates or messengers of churches ( 2 Corinthians 8:23 ; Philippians 2:25 ), and messenger ( John 13:16 ). It is applied also to Paul on a par with the twelve ( Galatians 1:1 Galatians 1:11 , etc.) and also to Barnabas ( Acts 14:14 ), and perhaps also to Timothy and Silas ( 1 Timothy 2:6 ff.). Two purposes of Jesus are mentioned by Mark in the choice of these twelve, that they might be with him (ina wsin met autou), and that he might send them forth (kai ina apostellh autou). They were not ready to be sent forth till they had been with Jesus for some time. This is one of the chief tasks of Christ to train this group of men. See Bruce's The Training of the Twelve. The very word apostolo is from apostellw. There were two purposes in sending them forth expressed by two infinitives, one to preach (khrussein, from khrux, herald), the other to have power to cast out demons (ecein exousian ekballein ta daimonia). This double ministry of preaching and healing was to mark their work. The two things are, however, different, and one does not necessarily involve the other.