What does the Bible tell us about Andrew?

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Andrew (Greek Andreas) means “manly” or “a man.” Andrew was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples (Matthew 10:2) but he did not become one of the inner circle. Matthew and Luke list him as the second of the Twelve disciples. He was the brother of Peter and both were from the city of Bethsaida (John 1:44) and working as fishermen (Matthew 4:18,19) when Jesus called them.

Most of what we know of Andrew comes from the book of John (ch. 1:40, 41, 44; 6:8; 12:22). He was one of the disciples of John the Baptist and he witnessed the Baptist declaring that Jesus was Lamb of God (John 1:35–36). Jesus called him to stay that day with Him (verses 38–39). After that day, he declared to his brother Simon, “We have found the Messiah’ (that is, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus” (vs. 40–42).

Later on, by the Sea of Galilee, Jesus told Andrew and Peter who were fishing: “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19). So, they immediately left their nets and followed Him (verse 20). Henceforth, Peter and Andrew were to make it their full-time business to be learners in the school of Jesus (Luke 5:11).

In John 6, Andrew appears in the narrative of the Feeding of the Five Thousand “One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to Him, “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?” (John 6:1–14). In this story, this disciple is shown as a practical person that is finding a way to help His Master.

In John 12:20–22, again we read about him in regard to some Greeks who were inquiring about the Lord (John 12:20–21). Philip told Andrew what the Greeks wanted, and together they brought the matter to Jesus (verse 22).

According to tradition, this disciple was martyred in Greece on a cross in the shape of the letter X—as a result of which a cross shaped thus is commonly known as St. Andrew’s cross. This disciple lived a life of a diligent worker and evangelist for Christ and died as a faithful disciple that honored His Master.

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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