What Is The Difference Between Apostle and Disciple?

What is the difference between apostle and disciple? The main difference between disciple and apostle is that disciple refers to a follower and student of a teacher whereas apostle refers to the messenger and ambassador.

Apostles and disciples are common terms found in the bible. Many people tend to treat and use these terms interchangeably. But this is quite wrong and it needs to be clarified.

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Difference Between Apostle and Disciple


Difference Between Apostle and Disciple

Basic Terms Apostle Disciple
Meaning Refers to the messenger and ambassador of Christ. Refers to the follower and student of a teacher (Messiah)
Reference He is an ambassador of the gospel He is a student of the gospel of Jesus Christ
Origin It is derived from a Greek word apostolos which means an ambassador It is derived from a Greek word mathaytes which means a student
Choice Apostle is chosen to serve the master and sent A disciple is are called and choose to believe
Who Is A person who spread the gospel Is the learner of the teachings and philosophies
Personification All are disciples Not all are apostles
Followers There were originally 12 apostles of Christ There are many followers of Jesus Christ

Who Is an Apostle?

An apostle is a messenger and ambassador of Jesus Christ. These are individuals responsible for the spread of the good gospel during the time of Christ.

Keep in mind that apostles are chosen to serve and sent by their master. Besides that, all apostles were at the time the disciples.

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Who Is a Disciple?

A disciple is a follower and student of the messiah. These are individuals with the zeal to learn the teachings and philosophies about Christ.

However, they are called and allowed to believe about their master. Keep in the mind that not all disciples are apostles. Besides that, there are many followers of Jesus.

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Main Difference between Apostle and Disciple in Point Form

  1. Apostles are chosen whereas disciples are called
  2. Apostles spread the gospel whereas disciples partake the teachings of the gospel
  3. Apostles were originally 12 in number whereas disciples were so many
  4. Apostles are an ambassador of the gospel whereas disciples are the students of the gospel
  5. All apostles were once disciples whereas not all disciples are apostles

Similarities between Apostle and Disciple

  1. Both belief in Jesus Christ
  2. Both are aware of the gospel of peace
  3. Both are followers of the Jesus Christ
  4. Both names are derived from Greek words

Faqs About Apostle And Disciple

Is It the 12 Disciples or Apostles?

According to Christian theology and ecclesiology, apostles were referred to the 12 disciples of Jesus in the New Testament.

Which Disciples Become Apostles?

The disciples who become apostles are Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot.

How Many Apostles Did Jesus Have?

According to the bible, Jesus Christ names 12 apostles to spread his gospel. These are individuals that spearheaded the rapid growth of the early Christian church.

Comparison Video (Apostle Vs Disciple)


According to Christianity, a disciple is a student or follower of Jesus and his teachings. On the other hand, an apostle is an ambassador whose responsibility is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Therefore, these two terms cannot be used interchangeably and taken to mean the same thing. However, both apostles and disciples are terms commonly found in the bible.

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