The Modern Day Apostles: Threat or Treat?

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There is much confusion in the contemporary sphere on the subject of apostles. This is mainly due to the climate of deep disagreement and resentment over some Christian leaders who are acknowledged by many to be modern-day apostles.

Paul mentions in Ephesians 4:11-13:
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:Till we all come inthe unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

Although most Pentecostals refer to these as “five-fold,” others see them as “fourfold,” combining the ministries of pastor and teacher into one. These “ascension gifts”-as they are called in traditional churches-were given to the Church after Jesus ascended to the Father to extend, guide, and mature the Church. We can assume that, at the time Paul wrote, the New Testament church had a clear understanding of what these offices required, how they operated, and who filled them. However, with the passing of time, the role and operation of these ministries in the everyday life of the church became less clear.

When considering the five-fold ministries, the average believer can understand that pastors care for their flock, evangelists preach to the unconverted, teachers instruct their students, and prophets prophesy the Word of God. But what do apostles do to show they are apostles? Are there apostles today? The nature of the apostolic office as revealed in the scripture. It also examines the biblical foundation and contemporary teaching on the nature and ministry of these modern-day apostles. In so doing, it seeks to provide an answer as to the basis for affirming the existence of apostles today.



Categories: Theology

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