Pretty much everyone knows that Jesus had 12 original disciples. All three synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) provide a list of the original 12. John’s gospel offers no list, but still refers to many of the disciples by name. The lists of the 12 are highly consistent within the gospels. However, there is one apparent contradiction that some critics like to highlight.
The Apparent Contradiction and Its Solution
The lists in Matthew (10:2-4) and Mark (3:16-19) each include a disciple named Thaddeus. In Luke (6:13-16), no Thaddeus is listed. A disciple named Judas, son of James is listed instead. The book of Acts (1:13) also omits Thaddeus and includes this person, Judas son of James. What’s going on, here? Continue reading