Apostle vs Disciple: 7 Major Differences with Comparison Table

What is the difference between apostle and disciple?

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.

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.

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Apostle vs Disciple

Comparison Table (Apostle vs Disciple)

Basic Terms Apostle Disciple
MeaningRefers to the messenger and ambassador of Christ.Refers to the follower and student of a teacher (Messiah)
ReferenceHe is an ambassador of the gospelHe is a student of the gospel of Jesus Christ
OriginIt is derived from a Greek word apostolos which means an ambassadorIt is derived from a Greek word mathaytes which means a student
ChoiceApostle is chosen to serve the master and sentA disciple is are called and choose to believe
Who IsA person who spread the gospelIs the learner of the teachings and philosophies
PersonificationAll are disciplesNot all are apostles
FollowersThere were originally 12 apostles of ChristThere 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.

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Summary

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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