17(A) James the son of Zebedee and John the brother of James (to whom he gave the name Boanerges, that is, Sons of Thunder);
As far as incredibly awesome nicknames go, Sons of Thunder wins. If you need a name for your brutal Men's Ministry or Christian Motorcycle gang, I think I've found one for you.
Actually, I was listening to the worship band, called Sons of Thunder and it made me search the scripture and look up in Mark 3 where Jesus calls James & John by this nickname. I went to my giant commentary that makes me look super intelligent and Holy to read what it had to say about the nickname. It led me to this commentary by James E. Stewart about the youth of Jesus' apostles.
Christianity began as a young people's movement... Unfortunately, it is a fact which Christian art and Christian preaching have too often obscured. But it is quite certain that the original disciple band was a young men's group. It is not surprising then, that Christianity entered the world as a young people's movement. Most of the apostles were probably still in their twenties when they went out after Jesus... Jesus himself, we should never forget went out to his earthly ministry with the "dew of [his] youth" upon him (Ps. 110:3- this psalm was applied to Jesus first by himself and then by the apostolic Church). It was a true instinct that led the Christians of a later day, when they drew the likeness of their master on the walls of the catacombs, to portray Him, not old and weary and broken with pain, but as a young shepherd out on the hills of the morning. The original version of Isaac Watts' great hymn was true to fact:
When I survey the wondrous cross
Where the young Prince of Glory died.
And no one has ever understood the heart of youth in its gaiety and gallantry and generosity and hope, it's sudden loneliness and haunting dream and hidden conflicts and strong temptations, no one has understood it nearly so well as Jesus. And no one ever realized more clearly than Jesus did that the adolescent years of life, when strange dormant thoughts are stirring and the whole world begins to unfold, are God's best chance with the soul... When we study the story of the first Twelve, it is a young men's adventure we are studying. We see them following their leader out into the unknown, not knowing very clearly who he is or why they are doing it or where he is likely to lead them; but just magnetized by him, fascinated and gripped and held by something irresistible in the soul of him, laughed at by friends, plotted against foes, with doubts sometimes growing clamorous in their own hearts, until they almost wished they were well out of the whole business; but still clinging to him, coming through the ruin of their hopes to a better loyalty and earning triumphantly at last the great name the Te Deum gives them, "The glorious company of the apostles." IT is worth watching them, for we too may catch the infection of their spirit and fall into step with Jesus."
Never in my experience a Sunday School goer did I see a flannel graph representation of the apostles as young men. I still don't see that- I had never imagined them as young. Young like my husband. Young like me.
That's just my thought for the day. Wouldn't this bit of a revelation change the face of Christianity in America- gone are the slick, polished images of pastors trying to "connect". Gone is the false teacher that is TBN. Gone is the out-of-touch. We are young and at the forefront of the ministry. Just like the Sons of Thunder.
P.S. Here's what started the whole Sons of Thunder search: