The article consists of five argumentative sections. The first deals with the textual evidence with regard to the expressions "disciples", "the Twelve" and "apostles". In the second section it is argued that Jesus did not create the idea of "the Twelve". Firstly, the argument focuses on a discussion of the differences and similarities in the lists of twelve names found in the synoptic gospels, Acts and the Sayings Gospel Q and, secondly, of the so-called "minor agreement" between Matthew (19:18) and Luke (11:30) with regard to the expressions the "twelve thrones" and the "twelve tribes of Israel". The investigation concludes that all roads lead to Jerusalem with regard to the historicity of the circle of the Twelve. Section three discusses the situation in pre-70 CE Jerusalem where the earliest Jesus faction linked the idea of "the Twelve" with the resurrection of Jesus and the appearances tradition. It is argued that the appearances tradition coincides negatively with an endeavour among leaders of the Jesus movement to seek positions of power and, positively, with the spread of the gospel to people who were previously considered to be excluded from being children of God.
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