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True Apostles

 

 Ephesians 4: 11,12   

11And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  12For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

 

 

 

 

 

The True Apostle !

By Apostle Ernest O Turner

The meaning of the word apostles are the sent forth ones. It comes from the Greek I send and from and is essentially the same word apostolos as we use in English. The twelve disciples of the Gospels are the foundation apostles that stand as the pillars of the church. They were to “be with Jesus” and called to cast out demons. There are pillars of the church called to be  apostles today with the definite higher calling of the apostolic gift but the word apostle also includes anyone who has been sent by God for a special calling like missionaries or special emissaries. Paul, Barnabas and Silas all held the office of apostles “sent” by the Lord, as well as the disciples and many other New Testament persons. An apostle in any age is one that has been sent by God to help bring the church to maturity.

Today’s apostles are still being sent out from Jesus to carry His message. Apostles are numbered with the five-fold ministry of Ephesians 4 with the prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers until “we all come in the unity of the faith.” When you are sent, you go in the name of the One who sent you. When Jesus said to His disciples, “As my Father has sent me, even so I send you,” in Matthew 10:16, He was using the Greek word apostle. He used the same word apostle when He sent out the seventy in Luke 10.

Apostles break new ground, this is why they are listed first in I Corinthians 12: 28. The false five-fold will not see this as sent first but as ranked first in authority. The example of Paul is in I Corinthians 4: 9 and 10, “For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ; we are weak, but you are strong; you are honorable, but we are despised.”

An apostle will set standards for the church according to divine mandate. This will include ground breaking ministries for sure but most commonly, God uses us as His special envoys. An apostolic calling today should be given to bring churches together more than establishing new ones. We don’t have to know that we are apostles to be sent.

Since the recognition of true apostles is found in the prophetic spirit, many fundamentalists and cults deny the existence of modern day apostles. True apostolic authority lies in the collective consciousness of true Holy Ghost ministries, establishing unity through us, as we all submit to the Lord. It is not subject to the heirarchy of church leadership.

The Jewish Sanhedrin had its apostles, and sent messengers with information to the various outlining communities. Paul was at first an emissary of the Sanhedrin, an apostolos, he later became an apostle for Jesus. The disciples that Jesus sent out door to door were apostles. In the everyday life of Greco-Roman world, an apostle was one sent to arrange a marriage or divorce or to deliver a legal decision.

Billy Graham uses the word apostle in three senses. First, apostleship is used in a general sense that all of us are sent into the world by Christ. The second uses are the messengers sent on particular errands. The third is the gift of apostleship.

Jesus is the One gathering His people together in these last days, to a unity that cannot be of any one ministry in any way except in the sense that we are the Body of Christ with Jesus as the Head and with us as members of His body. Jesus as the true shepherd is gathering us to Him by His spirit, no titles, no delineation, just obedience.

Some apostles mentioned in the New Testament are:

  • The Seventy (Luke 10:1, 3) Matthias (Acts 1:26)
  • James, the Lord’s brother (Gal. 1:19)
  • Paul (Acts 14:14)
  • Barnabas (Acts 14:4, 14; 1 Cor. 9:5 & 6)
  • Apollos (1 Cor. 4:6-9)
  • Andronicus (Rom. 16:7)
  • Junia (Rom. 16:7)
  • Epaphroditus (Phil. 2:25, {messenger is apostle in the Greek}
  • Titus (2 Cor. 8:23 {also messenger)
  • Unamed brother with Titus (2 Cor. 8:18, 23)
  • Timothy (1 Thess. 1:1, 2:6)
  • Silas/Silvanus (1 Thess. 1:1, 2:6)
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