Reuben is the son of a fisherman, living in Magdala around the time of Jesus’ Galilean ministry. Not relishing the idea of marrying the girl his parents have chosen for him, he runs away to Jerusalem, where he is mentored by Simeon, who trains him to be a cutpurse. Simeon is arrested by the Roman authorities. The next time Reuben sees his friend, he is a condemned man, carrying his cross to the crucifixion site in a pathetic procession headed by Jesus of Nazareth. Wanting to support his friend and mentor as much as possible, Reuben follows him to Golgotha and by default has a “ringside” experience of the crucifixion of Jesus and hears Him promise Simeon that he will be with Him in paradise.
Life will never be the same for Reuben after this experience.
In subsequent days, he encounters Mary of Magdala and John the disciple, who mentor and guide him into a faith in Jesus that is clearly evident in a changed lifestyle, attitude, and relationships.
“I have lost count of how many sermons there might be in Reuben.”
- Andy Sieberhagen, former missions pastor at Harvest Christian Church, Westerville, Ohio