Urantia Book 27. The life of Jesus of Nazareth, Joshua ben Joseph, Christ Michael, Sovereign God of the Universe of Nebadon. Jesus started a program of intense training, pairing the new apostles with those who had chosen them. The old apostles were to tell the new apostles all they had learned. Jesus also established Wednesday as a day of rest and relaxation. Evenings would be spent in the Zebedee garden receiving instruction from Jesus. Jesus was the Master; his apostles were his pupils. Jesus tried to make clear to them the difference between his teachings about the kingdom and the teachings that would inevitably spring up ABOUT him . Jesus said: “My kingdom and the gospel related thereto shall be the burden of your message. Be not sidetracked into preaching ABOUT me…Proclaim the gospel of the kingdom and portray my revelation of the Father in heaven, but do not be misled into bypaths of creating legends and building up a cult having to do with beliefs and teachings about my beliefs and teachings” (138.6.3). They again didn’t understand him and were afraid to ask for clarification. Jesus had one motive and that was a better and truer revelation of his Paradise Father; he was a pioneer of a new and better way to God, the way of love. Ever his exhortation to his apostles was: “Go seek for the sinners; find the downhearted and comfort the anxious” (138.6.3). Comment: Jesus chose inadequate men, he started preaching with a very low profile among rural villages, he stripped himself of all his power, he must have realized that these men would preach about him the very day he ascended, and what did he do about any of it? We’ll never really know why Jesus did or didn’t do the things we see happening–we just have to take it all on faith.******************************* On the first morning of the first campaign, James Z., Judas I., and Peter came to Jesus and wanted to know if the time was right to enter the kingdom. And, also, was Jesus going to proclaim the kingdom at Capernaum or Jerusalem? Jesus gathered all of them together and admonished them: “My little children, how long must I bear with you! Have I not made it plain to you that my kingdom is not of this world? I have told you many times that I have not come to sit on David’s throne. And now, how is it that you are inquiring which place you will occupy in the Father’s kingdom? Can you not perceive that I have called you as ambassadors of a spiritual kingdom?… Banish from your minds this idea that my kingdom is a rule of power or a reign of glory…In another age you will indeed sit with me in power and glory, but it behooves us now to submit to the will of the Father and to go forth in humble obedience to execute his bidding on earth”(138.7.1).************************* Jesus sent them out in pairs to pray and when they returned, he told them all his recent history, starting with his baptism. When he was finished, the men, under Peter’s leadership, swore undying devotion to their Master and unswerving loyalty to the kingdom. Next, Jesus had them pool their money, and found that there wasn’t enough to maintain the 12 and their families. Jesus therefore decided that they would fish for two weeks and preach for two weeks, and they alternated thus until the end of AD 26. Jesus taught his apostles to preach the forgiveness of sins through faith in God without penance or sacrifice, and that the Father in heaven loves all his children with the same eternal love. He told his apostles to refrain from discussing the following: 1. The work and imprisonment of John the Baptist. 2. The voice of the TA at Jesus’ baptism. 3. The turning of water into wine at Cana. Jesus was very serious about these three items. Fishing alternately with preaching brought plenty of money in for the families and the expenses of itinerant preaching. “Jesus made plain to his apostles the difference between the repentance of so-called good works as taught by the Jews and the change of mind by faith–the new birth–which he required as the price of admission to the kingdom. He taught: “Faith is the open door for entering into the present, perfect and eternal love of God”…Jesus sought to divert their minds from miracle seeking to the finding of a real and personal experience in the satisfaction and assurance of the indwelling of God’s spirit of love and saving grace” (138.8.8). Jesus also told them that women are equal to men.****** The apostles came to love Jesus, no matter how they were tested by boredom or impatience. He was a lively companion at fishing or on the long walks between villages. Their loyalty to Jesus and to each other held until the crucifixion and resurrection. His family, however, all but deserted him, thinking he was insane. They would plead with him to come home. Not a chance–Jesus was on a mission. He and his apostles worked in the towns of Capernaum, Bethsaida-Julias, Chorazin, Gerasa, Hippos, Magdala, Cana, Bethlehem, Jotapata, Raman, Safad, Gischala, Gadara and Abila. In addition, they visited the villages in the countryside. Some of the apostles had several children, but they were able to make satisfactory arrangements for the care of their families. Thus, they were able to devote their energies to the work of the Master without worrying about the financial welfare of their families.*************** The apostles organized themselves in the following manner: 1. Andrew, the first chosen apostle, was designated chairman and director general of the 12. 2. Peter, James and John were appointed personal companions of Jesus. They were to attend him day and night, to minister to his physical and sundry needs, and to accompany him on those night vigils of prayer and mysterious communion with the Father in heaven. 3. Philip was made steward of the group. It was his duty to provide food and see that visitors had something to eat. 4. Nathaniel watched over the needs of the families of the 12. He received regular reports as to the requirements of each apostle’s family, and, making requisition from the treasurer, would send funds each week to those in need. 5. Matthew was the fiscal agent of the apostolic corps. It was his duty to see that the budget was balanced, and the treasury replenished. If funds were not sufficient for support of the 12 or their families, he was empowered to order the 12 back to fishing. But this wasn’t necessary. 6. Thomas was manager of the itinerary. It devolved upon him to arrange lodgings and in a general way select places for teaching and preaching, ensuring a smooth and expeditious travel schedule. 7. James and Judas, the Alpheus twins, were assigned to the management of the crowds. It was their job to deputize a sufficient number of assistant ushers to maintain order among the crowds during the preaching. 8. Simon Zelotes was given charge of recreation and play. He managed the Wednesday programs and also sought to provide a few hours of relaxation each day. 9. Judas Iscariot carried the bag of money as treasurer. He paid all expenses and kept the books. He made budget estimates for Matthew from week to week, and also made weekly reports to Andrew. The apostles were organized this way until Judas dropped out and betrayed Jesus.