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Thread: Do we have Apostles today?

  1. #1

    Do we have Apostles today?

    "Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection" (Acts 1:22-23).

    From what I read, there are two requirements:

    1) company with Christ during His earthly ministry until His ascension, and

    2) witness of the resurrected Lord. These were the qualifications which had to be met by the new twelfth apostle, who, as it turned out, was Matthias. Clearly, this eliminates any present day apostleship.
    Even though Paul was not in the original 12, or probably not even present when they chose Matthias, Paul cited it in defense of his own apostleship: "Have I not seen Jesus Christ?" (I Corinthians 9:1).

    My understanding from these verses is that no man can be an apostle who has not been a witness to the risen Lord.

    I have met people who claim that they are Apostles. If you go according to the greek word (apostolos), with the word meaning.."an ambassador; one who is sent;." I can see where a person can claim they are "sent out", but I don't see where anyone in the present day church can fulfill any of the other qualifications of being an apostle.

    I realize that others than the 12, such as Barnabas in Acts 14 were referred to Apostles, but even then, it may be possible/probable that he was a witness of the risen Lord.

    Additionally, I had an interesting discussion with someone I met yesterday. She indicated that she has a friend, who is a woman, who is an Apostle. I have some serious questions about this. She referenced Junia in Romans 16:7, but from researching this verse, that seems to be a serious and unreasonable stretch of scripture.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Junia was certainly an apostle. Nothing in the text would hold otherwise.

    Why would we believe there are no longer apostles? We still have pastors, teachers, evangelists....We still have prophets. Why would one gift that Christ said was necessary be eliminated from the mix?

    There is nothing special or better about being an apostle than having the gift of helps, if that is what God called you to have or be.

    True apostles never brag about their apostleship or their office. They never use it from a position of superiority or for monetary gain. The only time you will ever hear a true apostle even admit that they are one is when the establishment of the Gospel or a church is needed.

  3. #3

    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by RabbiKnife View Post
    Junia was certainly an apostle. Nothing in the text would hold otherwise.

    Why would we believe there are no longer apostles? We still have pastors, teachers, evangelists....We still have prophets. Why would one gift that Christ said was necessary be eliminated from the mix?

    There is nothing special or better about being an apostle than having the gift of helps, if that is what God called you to have or be.

    True apostles never brag about their apostleship or their office. They never use it from a position of superiority or for monetary gain. The only time you will ever hear a true apostle even admit that they are one is when the establishment of the Gospel or a church is needed.
    I'm curious of your reasoning on Junia.

    From what I read in Romans 16:7, does not imply at all that she was an Apostle. The words "of note" denotes those who are marked, designated, or distiniguished in any way...and in this case, among the apostles. All this expression implies is that Junia was known to the other apostles and that they were regarded by them as worthy of their affection and confidence.

    There is no record of her appointment as an Apostle, the language itself does not lend itself to her being an apostle (see Romans 1:1, 1 Cor 1:1, 2 Cor 1:1, Col 1:1), the design of the office of Apostle was to bear witness to the life, death, resurrection, doctrine, and miracles of Christ (Acts 1:21-22, Acts 22:15).

    Perhaps there is a difference in the sense of being an Apostle as the 12 were in comparison to someone who is merely "sent out".

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by steelcurtain76 View Post
    I'm curious of your reasoning on Junia.

    From what I read in Romans 16:7, does not imply at all that she was an Apostle. The words "of note" denotes those who are marked, designated, or distiniguished in any way...and in this case, among the apostles. All this expression implies is that Junia was known to the other apostles and that they were regarded by them as worthy of their affection and confidence.

    There is no record of her appointment as an Apostle, the language itself does not lend itself to her being an apostle (see Romans 1:1, 1 Cor 1:1, 2 Cor 1:1, Col 1:1), the design of the office of Apostle was to bear witness to the life, death, resurrection, doctrine, and miracles of Christ (Acts 1:21-22, Acts 22:15).

    Perhaps there is a difference in the sense of being an Apostle as the 12 were in comparison to someone who is merely "sent out".
    My NIV says:

    7 Greet Andronicus and Junia, my fellow Jews who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among[d] the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Hi steelcurtain76 , and Paul in Eph 4:11 , Pau; writing through the Holy Spirit , reveals that even today there are only the following callings , and they are , Apostles , some Prophets , some Evangelists , and some Pastors and teachers .

    Jesus appointed the first 12 and the 11 , filled by the Holy Spirit picked the twelveth ,

    Paul was Picked by Christ Himself in Acts 9:6 .

    1 Tim 2:7 , " Wherefore I am ordained a Preacher , and an Apostle , ( I speak the truth in Christ and lie not ) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity ."

    And there are more verses than this ,

    But the question now is , are the Apostles in the Old Testament the same as in Eph 4:11 and what are there duties ? dan p

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by steelcurtain76 View Post
    "Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection" (Acts 1:22-23).

    From what I read, there are two requirements:

    1) company with Christ during His earthly ministry until His ascension, and

    2) witness of the resurrected Lord. These were the qualifications which had to be met by the new twelfth apostle, who, as it turned out, was Matthias. Clearly, this eliminates any present day apostleship.
    Even though Paul was not in the original 12, or probably not even present when they chose Matthias, Paul cited it in defense of his own apostleship: "Have I not seen Jesus Christ?" (I Corinthians 9:1).

    My understanding from these verses is that no man can be an apostle who has not been a witness to the risen Lord.

    I have met people who claim that they are Apostles. If you go according to the greek word (apostolos), with the word meaning.."an ambassador; one who is sent;." I can see where a person can claim they are "sent out", but I don't see where anyone in the present day church can fulfill any of the other qualifications of being an apostle.

    I realize that others than the 12, such as Barnabas in Acts 14 were referred to Apostles, but even then, it may be possible/probable that he was a witness of the risen Lord.

    Additionally, I had an interesting discussion with someone I met yesterday. She indicated that she has a friend, who is a woman, who is an Apostle. I have some serious questions about this. She referenced Junia in Romans 16:7, but from researching this verse, that seems to be a serious and unreasonable stretch of scripture.
    There are no apostles of Jesus Christ today. While Apostle means "one who is sent" an apostle of Jesus Christ is one whom Jesus Christ sent out. We have scriptural support that Jesus sent out 11 men and Paul.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by RollTide21 View Post
    My NIV says:

    7 Greet Andronicus and Junia, my fellow Jews who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among[d] the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was.
    The term "outstanding" is actually "well known". Paul isn't saying that Andronicus and Junia were distinguished apostles, he is saying that they were well known among the apostles. He is trying to say that all the apostles knew about Andronicus and Junia and held them in high regard.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by BroRog View Post
    The term "outstanding" is actually "well known". Paul isn't saying that Andronicus and Junia were distinguished apostles, he is saying that they were well known among the apostles. He is trying to say that all the apostles knew about Andronicus and Junia and held them in high regard.
    Ah.
    *****************

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Hi BroRog , and in Acts 13:2 , Christ Himself says , Separate me Baranbas and Saul and after this many more also were sent " ones " .

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Quote Originally Posted by dan p View Post
    Hi BroRog , and in Acts 13:2 , Christ Himself says , Separate me Baranbas and Saul and after this many more also were sent " ones " .
    Yes, these men were sent on a missionary journey. Does being sent on a missionary journey make one an apostle?

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    So now we are up to what, 14?

    Paul did not meet the criteria proposed in the OP.

    Neither did Barnabas.

    There's an argument that Silas, Timothy, and Apollos were counted as apostles.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    Paul's only criteria was "Jesus called me."

    With that as the criteria, how can anyone dispute whether God has called a modern day apostle?

    And are we ready to cast away all the prophets, evangelists, and pastors/teachers?

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    I would say there are apostles today because we can clearly see from Scripture there were more than 12 or the 11 who were left. Also that the gift of the Spirit of apostleship was mentioned by Paul.

    And I know some Protestants hate to hear this, but the Apostles did have people who traveled with them and ones that they passed on their teachings and mantles to, the early church called them bishops. In the Anglican, Orthodox, and Roman Catholic churches we can trace a line from the bishops of today to the Apostles of the NT. The early church deemed the bishops the sucessors of the apostles and leaders of the church. So yes we still have them today and then there are those who are not bishops but yet have the gift of apostleship.

    So yes they are still around today. The Holy Spirit is not going to let a gift die out. It makes no sense especailly a leadership gift.

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    I'm not going to say that there arn't any modern day apostles, but is it nessessary?

    If God is going to use you and you let him there really isn't anything anyone could can say or do otherwise.

    When you are called, you are called. There have been many great Men and Women through the ages. Not going to call them apostles, but cerrtainly recognize the hand of God upon them. If these men or women were supposed to be called apostles, is thier work any more or less significant?
    E ku'u lesu, ku'u Ho'ola
    'O'oe ke ala,
    A me ka 'oia'i'o
    A me Keolamauloa
    'Amene


    My Jesus, My savior. You are the way, the truth and the everlasting life. Amen

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    Re: Do we have Apostles today?

    The roman pontiff claims to be an apostle in an unbroken line from Peter to this day. Of course the pontiff also claims to be the vicar of Christ.

    I'm not certain how many denoms within the church hold to apostles and prophets in the modern church. I find the argument far less than compeling. If one defines the terms broadly then apostles as special messengers and prophets as forth tellers has some merit. Apostles and prophets in the sense of Paul and John the Baptist in modern times not so much. Those who might be bold enough to claim the office probably automatically disqualify themselves.

    For the cause of Christ
    Roger

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