Andrew was an apostle and the brother of Peter. Andrew is the first person in the Gospels listed as a follower of Jesus.
It seems Andrew had a positive outlook on life. And, because of his positive outlook on what might happen, he was a “bringer”:
– Meeting Jesus… John 1:35-39
Andrew was born and raised in the village of Bethsaida, on the Sea of Galilee.
Up to this point, Andrew (and probably John) had been one of John the Baptizer’s students/disciples. But, when John the Baptizer pointed out Jesus as the Messiah, Andrew became a follower of Christ.
– Bringing Peter to Jesus… John 1:40-42
At the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry, Peter & Andrew were said to have occupied the same house at Capernaum; Mark 1:29.
Both he and his brother, Peter, were fishermen by trade; that’s why Jesus later called them by telling them they would become “fishers of men“.
– Called to be an Apostle… Matt. 4:18-20; Mark 1:16-18; Mark 3:18
– Bringing a Boy to Jesus… John 6:4-14
Most of the apostles were initially stumped by the logistics. But, Andrew, maybe in jest, maybe just hoping, said, “Here’s a boy with 5 loaves and 2 fish… but that’s not much for so many.” It turned out to be more than enough!
– Bringing the Future to the Present… Mark 13:1-4ff
– Bringing Some Greeks to Jesus… John 12:20-26
Eusebius, in his church history, quotes Origen as saying Andrew preached in Scythia. The Chronicle of Nestor adds that he preached along the Black Sea, as far as Kiev… and, from there, he traveled to Novgorod. According to Hippolytus of Rome, he preached in Thrace, and his presence in Byzantium is also mentioned in the apocryphal Acts of Andrew, written in the 2nd century. So, he has become the patron saint of Ukraine, Romania, and Russia.
Andrew is believed to have been martyred by crucifixion in Patras (Patrae)in Achaea, on the northern coast of the Peloponnese. Early reports describe Andrew as bound, not nailed, to a Latin cross similar to that of Jesus’… but other traditions report it as being an x-shaped cross, which has become known as “Saint Andrew’s Cross” – supposedly at his own request, as he considered himself unworthy to be crucified on the same type cross as Jesus was crucified upon.
Andrew seized the positive in life with both hands. Even when the positive outlook seemed a long shot, like the bread and fish, Andrew took a chance on it.
As Andrew’s life can attest, one person’s tendency toward hope can become a source of blessing for others. The world needs more Andrews!
If you’re not an Andrew yourself, try to spot the one in your life… and give him/her a little encouragement! Being a hopeful person can sometimes be a lonely job!
* Be… or encourage… a ray of hope whenever you can!
You can read Andrew’s story in John 1:35-42; Mark 1:16-18,29; 3:18; Matthew 4:18-20; John 6:4-14; Mark 13:1-4ff; John 12:20-26.