Where Are The Apostles?

June 27, 2012

Where are the Apostles?

            Occasionally we hear of men who claim to be apostles.  For those who have a measure of Bible knowledge, a red flag goes up when they hear someone say he is an apostle.

In Revelation 2:2 Jesus recognized that there were false apostles.  “I know thy works, and thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:”  The Apostle Paul also made mention of false apostles.  “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ”  (II Corinthians 11:13).  Perhaps it shouldn’t surprise us if some, even in our day, claim to be apostles.  Our response should be that of Paul in calling them “deceitful workers.”

God never intended for there to be more than twelve apostles.  The twelve are mentioned several times in the Bible.  They are mentioned in the following verses: Matthew 10:2, 26:14, Mark 3:14, Acts 1:26 and Revelations 21:14.

We don’t find anything in the New Testament that gives us reason to think that there should be a succession of apostles.  From the words of Peter in Acts 1:21-22, it appears that a requirement for being an apostle was that he be one who had been personally acquainted with Jesus.  Paul also implies the same in I Corinthians 9:1.  He had an encounter with the Lord Jesus on the Damascus road. The word “apostle” means a sent one.  Jesus used the same word in John 20:21 when he said “as my Father hath sent me.”   Those who claim to be apostles may say they are sent of God.  They expect us to take their word for it.

Perhaps some say “But Paul was an apostle.”  Yes, that’s true, but it’s obvious that he was chosen of God and sent to the gentiles.  “But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: (Acts 9:15).  In the history of the primitive church we find no indication of any attempt to replace Paul.

The Apostle Paul was especially used of God in giving new revelation.  Likewise the false apostles of today claim to be the bearers of new revelation.  One of the best know false apostles of today is C. Peter Wagner.  He says the second apostolic era began in the year 2000.  He says that today’s church should have a hierarchical structure much like the Catholic Church has.  You can learn more about what he believes by going to google on the Internet.  He pretends to have a higher authority than pastors do.

Some men are not content with just being pastors.  They claim to be called of God to be apostles.  Dr. Bill Haman is one of the defenders of this new teaching.  He claims that in the last 50 years God has restored the five ministries mentioned in Ephesians 4:11.  If he is right, we have a right to ask, “Why didn’t the church have apostles in the previous years?”

These deceitful workers succeed in deceiving people with little Bible knowledge.  It’s unfortunate that there are so many today who claim to be Christians that have little knowledge of the Bible.  If the pastor announces that he is going to be reading from the Psalms, they don’t know whether it’s in the Old Testament or the New Testament.  Such people can be led to believe almost anything.

Where are the apostles?  We left them with the close of the primitive church.  That’s where God left them.  We don’t need them in our day because God’s revelation is

complete.  The only apostle we have today is the Lord Jesus Christ.  Heb. 3:1 says    “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;”  When you hear someone claim to be an apostle you should know immediately that he is a phony.

Our E-mail address is rusandmargaretgeorge@windstream.net

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