26th August 2017

Sons of Thunder? 

“James the son of Zebedee and John the brother of James, to whom He gave the name Boanerges, that is, ‘Sons of Thunder;’”
Mark 3:17 (NKJV)

You don’t get a nickname without good reason, but this is how disciples James and John were known. So why did Jesus nickname James and John the ‘Sons of thunder’?

Thunder ‘speaks’ loudly, and forcefully. James and John were men like thunder, who often spoke loudly, angrily, and forcefully. On one occasion, when the people of Samaria were not prepared to receive the message of Jesus, it was James and John who wanted to call down fire from heaven to consume them (Luke 9:54).

When Jesus spoke about how He would be betrayed, mocked, spit upon, scourged, and ultimately killed, it was James and John who blurted out, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask…Grant us that we may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on Your left, in Your glory” (Mark 10:35-37).

James and John just said what they thought. And they were just like us, just human. But God transformed them and at the end of their lives these men, who were known as the ‘sons of thunder,’ became known as something else. James was the first Apostle to be martyred, and John became known as the Apostle of love. He was the author of the Gospel of John as well as the Epistles of 1, 2, and 3 John. James and John became different people than they were previously.

It was God who changed them, and God can do the same for us, as it says in 2 Corinthians 3:18, “we all…are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 

Dear Father, thank You that You will not only change our name, but You are changing our character to be like Your Son Jesus Christ. In His name we pray.

Study by Dennis Payne


About the Author:
Dennis Payne attends the North London Congregation of the Worldwide Church of God UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God London
Indian YMCA
Mahatma Gandhi Hall
41 Fitzroy Square

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2:30pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Martin Ryan
Phone: 07958 386944
Email:   martin_ryan@wcg.org.uk

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