FAMINE IN THE LAND

Famine in the land

THERE ARE NO MORE APOSTLES

By Rick Becker   12 July 2023

The proliferation of contemporary “apostles and prophets” is the result of a narrative that’s been pushed for decades – the restoration of the offices of apostle and prophet to the church. If this were true, then God has failed his church by depriving it of two essential forms of ministry. Furthermore, if God has restored the office of apostle, then contemporary apostles who claim to hold the office should meet the biblical qualifications, if they don’t, they’re self-appointed false apostles.

Thayer’s Greek Lexicon gives the following definition of the word apostle in scripture (ἀπόστολος): “a delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders. Specially applied to the twelve disciples whom Christ selected…In a broader sense the name is transferred to other eminent Christian teachers; as Barnabas”  Barnabas and other apostles mentioned in the New Testament, apart from the original apostles (including Matthias and Paul) did not hold the office of Apostle (capitalized when referring to the office). The office of an Apostle was unique and restricted. Their commission was extraordinary, and they alone had been delegated special authority and had to meet specific requirements to hold the office. This article examines the claim that the office of apostle has been restored.

Contents of this article:
• The office of Apostle based on texts in Ephesians.
• The biblical qualifications to hold the office.
• The contemporary movement promulgating the restoration of the offices of apostle and prophet.
• Clarification that they are indeed referring to the office of apostle.
• How modern-day apostles deal with (or ignore) the biblical qualifications for the office.
• The crucial role modern-day apostles play in the movement.
• The attraction – why is this a coveted position?
• Conclusion
Extra content – a brief look at the office of a prophet for those who wonder if it still exists – since the office of Apostle has ceased.

THE OFFICE OF APOSTLE – TEXTS IN EPHESIANS.
Three important passages in the book of Ephesians:
• In the first occurrence, Paul describes the foundational role of apostles and prophets: “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 
built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone,” (Eph 2:19-20).
This foundational role of the Apostles was so unique that their names will be on the walls of the new Jerusalem (Revelation 21:14, see also Matthew 19:27-28). The Apostles played a role in laying the foundation – which is the teachings they received from God, divine revelation that’s contained in scripture.
The authority that Christ gave his Apostles was so exclusive that their words were received as the word of God: “And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers” (1 Thessalonians 2:13).
The Apostle Peter considered Paul’s teaching to be the equivalent of scripture: “as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures” (2 Peter 3:16).
Peter considers the teachings of the Apostles to be as authoritative as the Old Testament prophets when he writes:This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles” (2 Peter 3:1-2).
The “word of God” that the Apostles preached has been preserved by God, and still speaks to us today! With the penning of the gospels and Epistles, infallible revelation ended, it is complete and sufficient (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Modern-day apostles who believe the foundation needs to be laid again, need to add to the teachings of the Apostles since the original foundation is rendered incomplete.

• In the second occurrence, Paul writes – “When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel” (Eph 3:4-7).
Once again the Apostle’s role in receiving revelation and establishing the doctrines that are in scripture is unsurpassable. The mystery of the Gentiles being included in the faith was foretold by the Old Testament prophets (Acts 26:22-23; 3:24-26), but not fully understood (1 Peter 1:10-11), and fulfilled in the Apostolic era (Acts 11:15-18).
The great chasm between Jew and Gentile under the law had given way to a new dispensation – “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise” (Galatians 3:27-28).

• In the third occurrence, a favourite proof text for the restoration of the “five-fold ministry,” Paul writes: And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds, and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ” (Eph 4:11-12).
At this stage in his epistle, Paul has already described the unique function of “Christ’s Apostles” – a descriptive term for those in the office (Galatians 1:1; 2 Peter 1:1). They alone qualified for the office and fulfilled a foundational role – their ministry contributed to a foundation that does not need to be laid over and over again. Paul doesn’t make any distinction between the “apostles and prophets” in the previous texts and this text (4:11), which leads us to believe that 4:11 is referring to Christ’s Apostles – the original (including Matthias and Paul). With scripture complete, that foundational role ceased, yet the foundation is still serving its purpose, and in that sense, the foundational role of the apostles and prophets is still active. Evangelists, shepherds, and teachers build up the body of Christ on the foundation that has been laid.

Some modern-day apostles claim that all the offices mentioned in Eph 4:11 are still functional because the church has not attained “the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood” (Eph 4:13). But their form of unity is not based on the foundational truths of the faith, it’s based on their aberrant teachings and practices. Their form of unity looks like a packed stadium from various denominations, with celebrity speakers declaring a breakthrough, revelations, revival, or claims that God is doing a new thing (again). And it’s because they wander off from the foundational truths and teachings of Christ and his Apostles that their followers are “tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes” (Eph 4:14). It’s these false apostles who are calling for unity at the expense of sound doctrine that are creating division – “I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.” (Romans 16:17).
It’s the foundation –
“the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 1:3) that anchors us amid a visible church littered with false apostles peddling a different gospel. It’s the faithful elders/overseers who shepherd and equip their flocks, and lead them into maturity because they have a sure foundation – Apostolic doctrine.

It’s impossible to use any of these verses as proof texts for the restoration of the office of an Apostle without claiming to be in the same class as the Apostles of Christ. Modern-day apostles who claim to hold the office should be receiving direct and infallible revelation, contributing to scripture, and performing the same quality of miracles as the Apostles.


BIBLICAL QUALIFICATIONS TO HOLD THE OFFICE.
Let me begin by pointing out the obvious, yet often overlooked or intentionally ignored – God only chose men to hold the office. The biblical requirements to hold the office of Apostle:

1. Called directly by Jesus Christ.
Apostles were called directly by Christ, and sent out by Christ to complete their unique task.
And he went up on the mountain and called to him those whom he desired, and they came to him. And he appointed twelve (whom he also named apostles) so that they might be with him and he might send them out to preach and have authority to cast out demons” (Mark 3:13-15).
In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen” (Acts 1:1-2).
“But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you” (Acts 26:16).
Paul, an apostle – not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead – and all the brothers who are with me” (Galatians 1:1-2).
“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God” (Eph 1:1).

2. A witness to his resurrection.
There were very specific qualifications when the original Apostles replaced Judas, in the words of Peter: “For it is written in the Book of Psalms, “‘May his camp become desolate, and let there be no one to dwell in it’; and “‘Let another take his office.’ So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us—one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection (Acts 1:20-22, see also Acts 10:39-43).
Paul’s calling as an Apostle was unique, yet indisputable: “Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are not you my workmanship in the Lord?” (1 Cor 9:1, see also Acts 9:1-28).
“…and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me” (1 Corinthians 15:5-9).
“Last of all” means that Paul was the last person to qualify for the office!

3. Their ministry and their message confirmed by signs and wonders.
The main reason for signs and wonders in the early church was to confirm the identity and message of Jesus, and his Apostles. The Apostles were delegated special authority to perform miracles to confirm their apostleship:
“And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction” (Matthew 10:1).
“Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Portico” (Acts 5:12).

“And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles” (Acts 2:43).
The signs of a true apostle were performed among you with utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works” (2 Cor 12:12).
And God was doing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, so that even handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his skin were carried away to the sick, and their diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them” (Acts 19:11-12).

There was no Apostolic succession!
The Apostles appointed leaders to equip the saints by building on the foundation. They are referred to as elders, shepherds, overseers, or pastors.
“And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed” (Acts 14:23).
“This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you” (Titus 1:5).
Apostles were appointed directly by God, elders are appointed by qualified leaders in the church. The qualifications are listed in verse Titus 1: 6-9 (see also 1 Timothy 3:1-7).
Now from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called the elders of the church to come to him…Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood” (Acts 20:18;28).
So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: shepherd the flock of God that is among you” (1 Peter 5:1-2).
Peter, knowing his time was short, did not scramble to appoint a replacement to his office, but instead, he endeavored to make sure his teachings would not be forgotten – I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. And I will make every effort to see that after my departure you will always be able to remember these things” (2 Peter 1:13-15).
Likewise, Paul instructed Timothy as follows: “Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you” (2 Timothy 1:13-14).
That “good deposit” is the Apostle’s doctrine. When we build on the foundation of God’s word, when we rightly divide the scripture and proclaim the gospel the Apostles proclaimed, then we are an “apostolic” church. We don’t need self-appointed modern-day apostles to fool us into thinking that they have any special authority or revelation, or that we need to be under their “apostolic covering.”


THE CONTEMPORARY MOVEMENT PROPAGATING THE RESTORATION OF THE OFFICES OF APOSTLE AND PROPHET – THE NEW APOSTOLIC REFORMATION (NAR).

Peter Wagner (not some bitter discernment blogger with a religious spirit) coined the term New Apostolic Reformation “My term for the new wineskin that God has provided for these churches is the “New Apostolic Reformation.”1

Some of the false teachings that characterize this insidious movement:

• The transformation of this world.
Bill Johnson (Bethel “church”) – “There are seven realms of society that must come under the influence of the King and His Kingdom. For that to happen, we, as citizens of the Kingdom, must invade. The dominion of the Lord Jesus is manifest whenever the people of God go forth to serve by bringing the order and blessing of His world into this one.”2
Dominion theology is one of the false teachings that the NAR propagates. The “dominion mandate” of the NAR is to recover what was lost in the garden of Eden when man sinned – dominion over creation. What that includes in the NAR agenda is dominion over the systems of this world – they view this as “discipling” literal nations. In their view Christianizing the world through transforming the various spheres of society is a sign of a victorious church that has prepared this world for Christ’s second coming. The strategy to accomplish this task (known as the seven mountain mandate) is to influence or take dominion over seven key areas in society. Loren Cunningham, founder of Youth With a Mission (YWAM), and Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade came up with this strategy in 1975 and identified the seven areas. The seven areas are called the spheres, realms, mountains, influences, or pillars of society: church/religion, family, education, government, media, arts & entertainment, and business/finance.
• A great transfer of wealth (you’re expected to trust those who twist the scriptures to handle your money with integrity). It doesn’t take a genius to realize that this world is not being transformed into a Christian utopia. We’re living in an age where evil is called good, and good evil. What would have put you in prison a while back, is celebrated and deemed progress. Lunacy has replaced reason, and sheer wickedness permeates society in various forms. Even Peter Wagner realized that the seven mountain mandate was failing: “We have been doing everything we know how to do to see our cities transformed. However, after 20 years we cannot point to a single city in America that has been reformed according to objective sociological measurements.”3

Wagner attributes this to various reasons, but claims that what’s lacking in the equation is money:
“We will not see measurable, sustained transformation of our cities or states or nations if those who are providing strategic leadership do not have access to large sums of money.”4
According to Wagner, these large sums of money will come through “supernatural transfer” and “the power to get wealth”5 (It’s a pity the Apostle Paul never knew this, it could have spared him from hunger, cold, and all kinds of material lack).
• A gospel without a demonstration of signs and wonders is an incomplete or ineffective gospel.
Bill Johnson and many other proponents of the NAR believe that fully preaching the gospel means the gospel must be accompanied by a demonstration of power such as signs and wonders and healings. Bill Johnson: “In Romans 15:18-19, Paul demonstrates how the Gentiles were brought into obedience through the power of the Spirit of God, expressed in signs and wonders. This was what he considered as fully preaching the gospel. It wasn’t a complete message without a demonstration of the power of God. It’s how God says “amen” to His own declared word!”6

However, In this passage of scripture, Paul defines what he meant by fully preaching the gospel – “so that from Jerusalem and all around as far as Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.” In other words, fully preaching the gospel is referring to a geographical area, not signs and wonders accompanying the message. By “fully preached” Paul meant that he had completed, fulfilled, or accomplished his mission.
• Emphasis on experiences or “encounters” with God or angels.
The NAR is a movement characterized by the pursuit of the subjective in the form of various experiences or encounters. There is an emphasis on seeking and experiencing the presence of God, hearing his voice, dreams, visions, and experiencing the third heaven.
• Physical healing in this life is guaranteed in the atonement.
This is not a teaching that is exclusive to the NAR, but worth noting due to the damage this specific teaching inflicts on those who fail to receive their healing. (Bill Johnson believes “Jesus didn’t say to pray for the sick. He said to heal them”).
• Performing greater miracles than Christ
Bill Johnson teaches that Jesus performed his miracles as a man in right relationship with God – something all believers can emulate. One of Bethel’s “core values” is that “The Holy Spirit gives every believer the supernatural power to witness and release miracles, signs, and wonders.”
The proliferation of schools of supernatural ministry and endless meetings that are advertised by promising miracles and healings are a by-product of this emphasis. The goal is to perform greater miracles than Christ (based on John 14:12), however, that verse does not mean we will perform greater miracles than Christ.
• A great end-time revival that will include a billion soul harvest.
• False spiritual warfare – such as binding territorial spirits, shifting the atmosphere through declarations, deliverance ministries, breaking various curses of nations and individuals, and engaging Satan directly. (True and False Spiritual Warfare by Bob DeWaay is a great resource on this topic)
• Fresh revelation – God speaks directly to leaders, giving new strategies for his church, and new methods to achieve a certain goal. NAR leaders will claim that their revelations do not supersede or contradict God’s word (even when they do), but at the same time, it’s quite obvious that they view their revelations as essential for their followers and the church. The bottom line – if they hear authoritative words directly from God deemed essential to the functioning of the church, then these words should be added to scripture.
• The restoration of the offices of apostle and prophet – a teaching promulgated in the 20th century (late 1940s) by the Latter Rain movement. You may also hear the term five-fold ministry, which infers that the offices of apostle and prophet have been restored. This term is based on Eph 4:11: “And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers”


THE RESTORATION OF THE OFFICE

Peter Wagner was highly influential in promoting the restoration of the office of apostle and prophet in the past few decades. To be clear, he was referring to the office of an apostle: “With the recognition of the office of apostle in the 1990s, the complete government of the Church came into place for the first time since the early centuries.”7 

NAR apostle Ché Ahn, founder of Harvest Rock Church in Pasadena, California, and currently the International Chancellor for Wagner’s University writes the following in his book Modern-Day Apostles:
“We can now say we are living in the new apostolic age because God is restoring the truth that the gift and the office of apostles is for today…The gift and office of apostle not only function today but we are living in a new age that Peter Wagner has defined as the New Apostolic Reformation.”8 

Kris Vallotton (Bethel’s false prophet) writes in the foreword of Ahn’s book: “Whether you have an apostolic call on your life or want to understand how this important office can activate you to bring the Kingdom in power, then this is a must-read!”9 
Some believe the office never disappeared, but failed to be recognized, claimed, or named.
Randy Clark, leader of the Apostolic Network of Global Awakening, believes “the office of apostle was never meant to end, I’m not a restorationist because I don’t believe the office ever ended, we just gave it different names for church political reasons and some theological reasons that weren’t biblical.”
In his book The Essential Guide to the Power of the Holy Spirit, Clark writes “...there is no reason to deny the office for today’s church and for the church’s history.”10
Under the section Example of modern day apostles, Clark writes: “Hudson Taylor’s work in China appears apostolic, as does Rolland and Heidi Baker’s work in Mozambique.” 11 

False apostle Randy Clark (along with John Arnott) contributed to one of the biggest deceptions in the visible church – the Toronto “blessing.” And the mere fact that he considers Heidi Baker orthodox let alone an apostle, speaks to the lack of discernment and depth of deception modern-day apostles function in.


HOW MODERN-DAY APOSTLES DEAL WITH (OR IGNORE) THE BIBLICAL QUALIFICATIONS.

1. Called directly by Jesus Christ:
Modern-day apostles won’t dispute this qualification because they redefine it.
Ché Ahn:
“There is no doubt that God has restored the office and gift of apostles. It is equally certain that God calls and chooses apostles. We cannot choose to be an apostle. In other words, we don’t wake up one morning and say, “I think I’ll be an apostle today,” or “Okay, I’ll be an apostle. I like that title.” Instead, God decides.”12
Peter Wagner: “No apostolic authority is self-generated. It comes only as God chooses to delegate it.”13
But being directly called by God as in the case of the Apostles, and being called by God as a modern-day apostle are two different things. In the case of the latter, we’re dealing with men or women who make things up, twist the scriptures, rely on subjective feelings, and blatantly lie about their experiences with God.
“Called directly by God” in NAR terms means:
• The same as any other call to the ministry through church leaders. Randy Clark writes: “When people are called to the ministry, as many denominations believe God calls their pastors and priests, this is another way of saying Jesus has appointed them. Like pastors and priests, apostles are also called or appointed by Jesus today.”14 
• They have joined some coalition of Apostles (annual fees apply) or have been recognized and “are sent from an established apostolic center.”15 
• Other fraudulent apostles recognize them as an apostle.
• They’ve received a “prophetic word” from a false prophet.
Wagner: “The prophets gave me the apostolic office.”16
Ché Ahn: “Cindy Jacobs called me…She said, “I have a word from the Lord for you. ‘You’re not to join another network. I’ve called you to be an apostle. You will be like Abraham, a father of many. And you will have churches on every single continent.’”17
• They’ve had some kind of an encounter with God or some kind of sign.
False apostles can concoct any story to substantiate their calling to the office of apostle. Perhaps they saw a figure or form in a cloud formation, or they could be a little more dramatic and claim to have had a shocking encounter (literally) where electricity pulsed through their body leaving them incapacitated. In fact, in the NAR any kind of behaviour similar to the boy with the unclean spirit will be viewed as a confirmation of a super-apostolic calling: “While he was coming, the demon threw him to the ground and convulsed him” (Luke 9:42).

Clever false apostles can impress their gullible followers by taking a trip to the throne room in heaven, or by claiming that Jesus walked through a wall and called them directly – this is far more impressive than a seventeen-foot angel commissioning them.
• They feel or know that they’re called as an apostle
Ahn: “The journey is different for each one of us. God will speak to us differently. If you feel that you have been called as an apostle, even if it’s just an inner knowing, ask the Lord to show you your prophetic history.”18 
• They don’t have the time to go through all the NAR hoops or have connections with other fraudulent apostles or prophets, so they simply identify as an apostle, call themselves an apostle, and start their own ministry.

2. A witness to his resurrection.
Modern-day apostles can’t meet this requirement as Paul was the last person that Jesus appeared to ( 1 Cor 15:3-8). Modern-day apostles who claim to hold the office can’t even match the experience of all the other early church apostles, let alone ordinary believers who saw the risen Christ: “…and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles.” (1 Cor 15:5-7). Any modern-day apostle that claims to have been among this number is a liar. Two examples of how modern-day apostles twist their way around this particular qualification:
Joseph Mattera is the leader of The U.S. Coalition of Apostolic Leaders and Christ Covenant Coalition (It costs $499 to enroll in his curriculum from the Mattera Institute For Apostolic Leadership – part of the “great wealth” transfer?).
Mattera’s solution is to spiritualize this specific qualification. Mattera writes:
“In 1 Corinthians 9:1 and Acts 22:14 an important part of Paul’s calling to the apostolic was that he had seen Jesus personally. Whether this was in the body or just a vision we don’t know (2 Corinthians 12). But the main idea is that Paul had a powerful life-changing encounter with Jesus that rooted and grounded him in the faith and gave him an intimacy with Christ that sustained him through all his trials and tribulations. Contemporary apostles (like Moses and Paul of old) need to know the Lord face-to-face as a man knows his friend (Deut. 34:10) so they can clearly hear His voice and have faith to walk in great exploits, and so they are not walking in presumption and embarrass themselves and the gospel.” Note that Mattera compares contemporary apostles to the experience and calling of Moses and Paul.
Randy Clark argues that this requirement was unique to the “replacing of Judas” and the “initial twelve apostles.”19 Clark does not explain why Paul missed this point and justified his apostleship to the Corinthians by confirming that he met this qualification: “Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord?” (1 Corinthians 9:1).
Clark conveniently lumps anyone called an apostle in the New Testament together, their functionality being the only difference.

3. Their ministry (in the office), and their message confirmed by signs and wonders.
Some modern-day apostles argue that the Apostles weren’t the only individuals to perform signs and wonders. This is true, but signs and wonders through anyone apart from the Apostles weren’t normative. God used Stephen (Acts 6:8), Philip the evangelist (Acts 8:6-7), and Barnabas (Acts 15:12) to perform signs. These are the only men on record who performed signs and wonders apart from the Apostles. This specific argument by modern-day apostles cannot explain why Paul defends his Apostleship by claiming “The signs of a true apostle were performed among you with utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works” (2 Corinthians 12:12). Moreover, the fact that signs and wonders faded away towards the end of the apostolic age is undeniable. Fast forward to the “signs and wonders” of modern-day apostles. A movement (NAR) that revolves around signs and wonders and talk of performing greater miracles than Jesus would surely have sufficient documented evidence of all the miracles that they’ve performed. Yet their failures and cover-ups continue day by day. They are dying from the same diseases that affect everyone, they are burying their dead, taking time off from their “ministry” under doctors’ orders because they have some ailment (Todd White, Heidi Baker), and cannot stop a germ or virus with their decrees and declarations. They cannot duplicate the miracles of the Apostles, let alone Jesus who gave his life and had the authority to take it again – raise himself from the dead. (John 10:17-18). Signs and wonders in their view include oily palms, gold dust, angel feathers, glory clouds, unverifiable healings, Kundalini-like manifestations, seizure-like contortions of the body, surges of electricity through their bodies, hysterical laughter, incapacitating experiences, and the list goes on.


THE CRUCIAL ROLE MODERN-DAY APOSTLES PLAY IN THE NEW APOSTOLIC REFORMATION (AND IN THEIR OPINION THE CHURCH AS A WHOLE).

It will become clear that in their opinion their office is indispensable, and without them, the church is deprived of essential factors such as governance, authority, revelation, and power. Modern-day apostles may claim that they’re not on the same level as the original Apostles, but their inflated view of their authority and power tells a different story. For instance, The International Coalition of Apostolic Leaders (ICAL membership will cost you $450.00 annually) claim that “There are no apostles in any other time in history that can claim equality with the original twelve.”
A few sentences later they give their definition of contemporary apostles:
“A Christian leader gifted, taught, commissioned, and sent by God with the authority to establish foundational government within an assigned sphere by hearing what the Holy Spirit is saying and one who sets things in order accordingly for the growth and maturity.” – Isn’t that what the original Apostles accomplished (without the NAR buzzwords)?
Randy Clark (leader of the Apostolic Network of Global Awakening) has created the Network “to give an opportunity for building relationships with like-minded people, to have the covering of an apostolic leader, and to provide opportunities for equipping and activation.”
Apparently, those who join will “Experience a greater flow of the anointing in an apostolic relationship.”

Previously I pointed out Joseph Mattera’s excuse for an apostle to have witnessed the resurrected Christ. Mattera believes that “the restoration of the Apostolic function is based on the New Testament pattern of church ministry.” Mattera distances himself from some of the errors in the NAR and downplays his version of a modern-day apostle by referring to the gift instead of the office, and by emphasizing the function and not the title. But in this article he makes it clear that his version of contemporary apostles should perform signs and wonders like the original Apostles: “Apostles move in signs, wonders and miracles (Romans 15:18-20; 2 Corinthians 12:12) Paul and the other New Testament apostles regularly moved in miraculous signs, wonders and miracles which included gifts of healings, working of miracles and casting out demons.”
Mattera cannot explain why the Apostles appointed elders/overseers/pastors to lead congregations. In his view the fact that pastors lead congregations has been disastrous: “Consequently, with the eradication of the apostolic from the local church, pastors have become the leaders of congregations. This has resulted in the body of Christ being led by caregivers instead of by strategic (military) generals sent out to conquer and establish new territory for the kingdom! The result has been disastrous as most churches have now become self-focused and inbred instead of kingdom-focused and mission centered.”
From the above, it’s clear that Mattera considers the role of the modern apostolic movement in the church foundational, without which the church will be ineffective, to say the least. Let me remind you that this is the same Joseph Mattera who along with Dr Michael Brown (a great NAR apologist) released the NAR & Christian Nationalism Statement, which includes the following statement:
WE REJECT the belief that every church must be submitted to apostles and prophets to be in right order before the Lord.”
Ironically, the signatories include some of the biggest charlatans in the visible church (read
this response to Mattera and Brown’s statement by Holly Pivec and Doug Geivett).

“If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, it probably is a duck” –
So according to Mattera not every church must be submitted to apostles and prophets. But what if they’re not, and how is his downgraded version of an apostle different from the NAR apostles?
Mattera: “Furthermore, when apostles lead local churches an apostolic spirit of wisdom, revelation and courage comes upon entire congregations and releases all the saints to the work of the ministry (Ephesians 4:12) to fill up all things in creation (Ephesians 4:10). This produces (marketplace) apostles and prophets of government, economics, education, science, media and creative innovators that are at the (prophetic) tip of the spear by applying the biblical worldview to their spheres of influence.”
Mattera: “The apostolic not only deals with redeeming individual sinners but also influences the systems and social structures of communities, cities and nations. While revival brings people into the church, reformation has to do with sending the people out of the church into the world to reflect God’s kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. Thus, apostolic truth exists to fulfill the Cultural Mandate of Genesis 1:28 and equip the saints to go into every sphere of society for kingdom influence and purpose.”

Danny Silk is part of Bethel’s senior leadership team, and therefore gives us insight into Bethel’s “culture.” First, let’s establish that Silk is referring to the office of apostle. In his book Culture of Honor: Sustaining A Supernatural Environment (endorsed by Bethel’s “prophet” Kris Vallotton and “apostle” Ché Ahn) Silk writes: “Paul clearly lays out an order of priority in this passage (1 Corinthians 12:28), and this order is related to the realms of the supernatural that correspond to each particular office.20  

In his book, Silk laments the fact that pastors, teachers, and evangelists are at the “helm” of the church. In Silk’s opinion, this defective model has caused the church to be weakened: “The problem is that these are earthly-focused models of leadership. Without the flow of grace from the apostles and prophets, who are not only focused on seeing what is going on in Heaven but also on releasing that reality here on earth,”21 

Silk has a few disparaging things to say about teachers in the church. He reminds them that they are
“only the third level of anointing. It is a “C” in a grade scale, and it is what keeps the Church only average in its effects and influence.”22
It gets worse: “Most teachers today are fixated on the written Word of God. They believe that the Word of God is the source of life and truth on the earth. Their value for the Word is much higher than their need for the supernatural. These are the lawyers, scribes, and Pharisees of our day.”23

So what are the “C” grade teachers supposed to do? Silk supplies the answer: “Teachers must take the passion and the revelation of the apostles and prophets and show us how it becomes truth that we apply to our lives. The role of the teacher is to help replicate the processes of the supernatural and then train and equip the saints to cooperate with those processes.”24 

What does scripture say about teachers? James thought this “C” grade anointing needed to be taken seriously: “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness” (James 3:1).

Ché Ahn believesApostles are called to redeem the seven mountains back from the distortion that has been created because of sin and corruption. It is a primary reason God has restored the office and gifts of the apostle and given certain reformation characteristics to the modern-day apostle.”25 

According to Ahn the office of apostle is necessary to disciple the nations:
“The expression of Christianity has shifted from individual salvation to discipling nations, which includes social transformation. To bring this about God has restored the office and gifts of the apostle through apostolic networks, apostles in the marketplace as well as apostles in the church.”26

Ahn reiterates the exclusive role of modern-day apostles in the NAR agenda by quoting Wagner: “Only apostles, whatever kind they might be, have the God-given authority,” said Peter Wagner, “to influence and take charge of a certain segment of society on behalf of the Kingdom of God. This is true not only of all seven mountains but also of each and every significant subdivision of the seven.”27

And without a great reset in the church (a reset because the god of the NAR makes mistakes) the great commission will fail: “…amazing moves of the New Apostolic Reformation support my conclusion that apostles are for today and that God is restarting His church government. This is absolutely crucial in order for us to see the Great Commission fulfilled.”28
The level of biblical ignorance and stupor is so high with these fake apostles they don’t understand that “make disciples of all nations” does not mean literal nations. It means that there will be “disciples” from Jews and Gentiles or all ethnic groups (the mystery revealed by New Testament Apostles and prophets).

A humble Ahn discovered that apostles (like himself) hold the key to revival (except these were not revivals but rather a mass deception)
Ahn: “I realized that wherever revival has broken out it was because an apostle led that revival. This was true whether it was John Arnott in Toronto; John Kilpatrick in Brownsville; or me in Pasadena at Mott auditorium, where we had nightly meetings for three years; or Bill Johnson in Redding, California. It was true for a lot of places.”29 

Ahn equates the teachings of modern-day apostles to the teachings of the original Apostles:
“We need five-fold ministers to keep us from deviating from the standard of God’s Word. I believe that’s why it is so important that the Body of Christ receive apostolic teaching. Acts 2:42 says the community of believers was devoted to the apostles’ teaching; and it says, very specifically, that it was apostolic teaching.”30 

A delusional Kris Vallotton parrots Bethel’s false doctrine – “It is paramount in this new season that we clearly understand the apostles’ mantle and mandate to transform culture. With this fresh revelation, we can lay governmental foundations in the Church that empower, rather than restrain, today’s apostles in their extraordinary calling…Apostles create covenantal, family relationships because believers are attached to and through fathers, mothers and family, not doctrine. This promotes freedom for people to think creatively, to dream, to envision with God and to experience new depths of the Holy Spirit. This relational security creates an environment that attracts revelation.”31

Bill Johnson’s foreward in Ahn’s book Modern-Day Apostles:
“We are in an hour where God is restoring the apostle in a way that reflects His beauty, while avoiding the pitfalls of prior generations. One of the evidences of this is the rising “water level” for the miraculous in the church. This is just a byproduct of the restoration of that gift.”32

Back to Peter Wagner, who explains why there has been a delay in the supposed wealth transfer:
“The answer to this must have to do with God’s timing. The wealth undoubtedly is there, but apparently we are not yet ready to receive it. For one thing, I believe that God was waiting for the biblical government of the Church to come into place under apostles and prophets. But this happened in 2001 when, at least according to my estimates, the Second Apostolic Age began.”33

Chuck Pierce: “For us to see God’s order, apostles must be first and prophets second; then we can pastor and teach the sheep properly. This movement is much more than people finding Christ and needing each other. This is a movement with new order and authority. This is a movement that will see the world evangelized. We have begun to see a shift from scattered sheep to the Triumphant Reserve; His family is being restored and becoming a viable, holy army in the earth!”34

Randy Clark will host “Voice of the Apostles” this October. For $135.00 you can have the privilege of listening to these humble “apostles” of God… who describe themselves and the event as follows on their website: “The Voice of the Apostles will bring together modern-day “generals of the faith,” to deliver a significant, destiny-shaping time of teaching and impartation.”
This is what they promise: “Powerful impartation & outpourings of the Holy Spirit. Hundreds of healings and miracles. Fresh encounters with God.”

One of the speakers is Heidi Baker, who has undergone medical treatment for her back problems and is currently on “strict rest and recovery.” She’s not the first and she won’t be the last of these “generals of the faith” who claimed to have healed hundreds, yet when it comes to their ailments they don’t run to a supernatural healing school or a fellow gifted healer, why?


THE ATTRACTION – WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO BE A MODERN-DAY APOSTLE?

Clearly, in the culture of the New Apostolic Reformation, there are definite advantages to being recognized as a modern-day apostle. Quotes from influential voices in the New Apostolic Reformation & Co reveal the benefits of being a modern-day apostle:
• Shameful gain.
One of the main motivating factors that drive false teachers is greed. False apostles stand to benefit like any other false teacher. Conveniently, the supposed great transfer of wealth will filter through their hands at some point. On top of that, most in the US are milking the system for all it’s worth. “Apostle” Chuck Pierce and family are $4 million richer…for spouting gobbledegook.

Wagner: “Tithes were for the Levites, and firstfruits were for the priests. In modern language, tithes are for the pastors or the storehouse, and firstfruits are for the apostles. Firstfruits, the first and the best, are given by faith at the beginning of the harvest, and tithes are returned to God after the harvest. Do you want to prosper? “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine” (Prov. 3:9-10).”35 We all know what Wagner is really saying – honor your apostolic covering (not God) by giving them the largest chunk of your money.
• Extraordinary authority.
Chuck Pierce: “Apostolic authority is a real key to seeing breakthrough in any region. Apostles have the ability to forgive that which has not been aligned with the purpose of God in a territory (see John 20:23). How apostles are received is a key measuring stick as to how the Lord will release blessings or judgments on a territory. Apostles also have authority over the demonic rulers of a region. They have the ability to demonstrate supernatural power that draws a whole region to our life-giving God.”36
Wagner: “One of the major roles of an apostle is to communicate to the Church “what the Spirit says to the churches,” as we see in the book of Revelation (see Rev. 2:7). The apostle knows what the Spirit is saying by receiving revelation from God. When this happens, authority increases exponentially; the apostle announces the word of the Lord.”37
Ché Ahn: “An apostle is a Christlike ambassador with extraordinary authority called and sent out by Jesus Christ with a specific assignment to align the Church to bring Heaven’s culture to earth and fulfill the mandate to disciple nations.”38
• Special authority leads to church growth.
Being commissioned as an apostle could mean explosive growth (which in turn means increased revenue).
Ahn: “I know one pastor whose church grew from 150 members to 500 members in the two years after he was commissioned. And this occurred in a nation in which the population is less than one percent Christian! This is a huge surge in the context of the country he is in. I believe that we go to another level in spiritual authority when we are commissioned properly in God’s time.”39
Ahn closes his book with an apostolic blessing: “May you be called by God, sent by God, and commissioned by His apostles; “40 – note that “His apostles” is referring to Ahn & Co.
• Superior spiritual warfare powers.
Ahn: “One of the reasons things shift when apostles operate in their office and gifting is because they wage spiritual warfare...when it comes to spiritual warfare apostles are the generals in the army.”41
The title for his sixth chapter in Modern-Day Apostles: “APOSTLES HAVE AUTHORITY TO WAGE WARFARE AND TO MAKE APOSTOLIC DECREES BY BINDING AND LOOSING.”
• Revelations, open portals.
Although Wagner says the revelation that apostles receive is not equal to the canon of scripture, the so-called revelations they receive are seemingly indispensable to the church.
Wagner: “Rather, it is the rhema word through which God gives us specific direction regarding His will for the present and future.”42
Wagner: “Whereas every believer can and should hear directly from the Holy Spirit, it is only the apostles, in proper relation to prophets, who hear what the Spirit is saying to the churchesApostles know where they are going. Not only that, but they know where the Church should be going. Where do they get this vision? They receive revelation from God.”43
Referring to apostles, Danny Silk claims that they receive crucial and fresh revelation: “It is as though God Himself has given blueprints to certain individuals to reproduce Heaven on the earth.44

In a foreward to one of Bill Johnson’s books, Lance Wallnau writes: “Apostles are now bringing us into a rendezvous with “the perfect day” as men like Bill Johnson forge a path of revelation that is brighter with each book. As the world creeps into deeper darkness, torchbearers like Bill Johnson open portals to release the knowledge of the glory in language so tangible and accessible it can’t help but inspire end-time exploits.”45
• A position of influence in the world and church.
Ché Ahn: “As men and women of God “filled with the Holy Spirit and intent on serving God by taking dominion of whatever mountain in which God has placed them,” it is likely that apostles will occupy high positions on the seven mountains.”46
Kris Vallotton: “In late 2007, the Lord spoke to me and said, Mankind has just entered into the new apostolic age. Yet the modern world has never experienced the true power of an apostle, because apostles have emerged in a pastorate form of government that restricts, constrains and often usurps their ability to govern. For the most part, the Church has only empowered apostles to plant churches. But apostles were never meant merely to be church planters: they were called to be world changers!47
Vallotton: “It is paramount in this new season that we clearly understand the apostles’ mantle and mandate to transform culture. With this fresh revelation, we can lay governmental foundations in the Church that empower, rather than restrain, today’s apostles in their extraordinary calling.”48
• Power in the title.
Wagner: “There must be more significance than mere superficiality or coincidence that the title “apostle” is used more than twice as often as any other title by the leaders who wrote the New Testament epistles. One reason for this, in my opinion, is that there is power in the title. Those to whom God has given the spiritual gift of apostle and who have been entrusted with the office of apostle by human representatives of the Body of Christ, apparently are more able to function effectively in their divine assignment with the title “apostle” than they could without it.”49
• Apostles have the ability to impart.
Wagner: “They impart. God uses apostles to activate His blessings in others (see Rom. 1:11).”50 
• Apostles cast vision.
Wagner: “They cast vision. An apostle’s vision is based on the revelation he or she receives.”51
• The righteousness and humility of apostles exceeds others.
Wagner: “Apostles are apostles not because they are perfect, but because they have met God’s standards of holiness and humility.”52 

• Magnetic-like attraction.
Ahn: “One of the things I want to encourage you about, if you are an apostle, is that God is going to give you that law of attraction. People will be attracted to you. They will align with you and with your apostolic vision.”53
• Pulling in the supernatural.
With Bethel, everything revolves around the supernatural, and once again, in Danny Silk’s view all things supernatural hinge around the recognition of, and submission to, apostles and prophets:
“But in an apostolic environment, the apostles and prophets pull the supernatural into the environment, and the workers of miracles run around pushing every button to see what can happen.”54 That is what is taught at the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry. Students are encouraged to push buttons or “take risks,” and experiment with healing, prophecy, and various other supernatural endeavors, hoping to hit some spiritual jackpot.
• More than a leader.
Leadership is such a big deal in the visible church. Everyone wants to be a leader, and by taking courses and blind obedience NAR followers can propel themselves up the ladder. With so many leaders though, apostleship will place you in the upper echelons of the evangelical industrial complex.
Peter Wagner: “…an apostle is a leader of leaders. In most cases, the apostle heads up an apostolic network of pastors and other leaders who, with a certain amount of sanctified pride, do not hesitate to let others know they are under the authority of a given apostle.55
• Apostles have their own territory.
Ordinary pastors have to be content with shepherding their flock who generally come from surrounding suburbs, but apostles get their own region.

Ché Ahn: “Next, there are territorial apostles. This is where God has given authority over a certain geographic area such as a city, state, or nation. If you ask me, “Who’s the apostle in Northern California?” Well, there are many, but one I would say is Bill Johnson.”56
• Extra angels.
In addition to being given territory, or to use another term – “geographical sphere,” in Kris Vallotton’s opinion, apostles have the added advantage of angelic help:
Kris Vallotton: “We see that true apostolic ministries have angels assigned to them. These angels are commissioned to carry out the mission dictated by a particular apostle’s mandate and metron. The word metron means the realm or boundaries of a leader’s spiritual influence.”57
• Blind obedience from followers.
Kris Vallotton: “A disciple who is following an apostolic leadership team will be required to exercise a high level of faith and trust, as well as extreme discernment, because the structures, strategies, vision, and mission of apostleships tend to be Spirit-inspired. By their very nature, apostles don’t give preeminence to “common sense.”58
Sure, you try and tell an “apostle” that their revelation or teaching contradicts God’s word and see what happens. The noble Bereans didn’t need “extreme discernment” to test the teaching of Paul, they simply compared what was taught with scripture. It could be said that by their very nature, false apostles have no common sense.

CONCLUSION
Modern-day apostles do not meet the biblical requirements to hold the office.
The sheer arrogance of anyone who claims to hold the same office as the original Apostles is mind-boggling and indicative of their biblical ignorance and deception. But that’s not all, their false teachings disqualify them from holding any position in the church! Not only do they distort the original foundation, but they also distort the cornerstone – their man-centered doctrines render Christ’s work unfinished. Most modern-day apostles will claim that they’re not on the same level as the original Apostles. By saying this, they’re conceding that original were in a class of their own – which means the “restoration of the office” is not the restoration of the office, but a false apostleship – a resurgence of the same kind of super-apostles that plagued the early church (2 Corinthians 11). While this article is referring to the office of apostle, be aware that some who view themselves as modern-day apostles might not claim to be operating in the office. They may even distance themselves from movements that emphasize the restoration of the office. They may simply claim the title of apostle (red flag). That being said, if they function in the same manner, believe in the same special authority to govern, receive special revelation, and claim to operate in the miraculous – mark and avoid them all the same.


WHAT ABOUT THE MODERN-DAY PROPHETS WHO CLAIM TO HOLD THE OFFICE?

We’ll look at the same three texts in Ephesians:
“…built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets” (Eph 2:20).
The Old Testament prophets had prophesied about salvation for people from all nations which encompassed the promise of the “gospel of God” (Romans 1:1-2), in that sense, and including the fact that their words were scripture, they have a foundational role. However, some commentators believe these are New Testament prophets due to the order (apostles and prophets), the reference to the “household of God,” and the fact that Eph 3:5 and 4:11 are referring to prophets in the New Testament church (Acts 11:27-29; 15:32). Like the Apostles, their role was foundational during this unique time in history.

• “…it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit” (Eph 3:5).
This text is referring to New Testament prophets, the revelation that they received along with the Apostles was an essential component of the gospel – the inclusion of the Gentiles. What other mysteries has God left out of scripture that will be progressively revealed by modern-day prophets? What needs to be added to the foundation?
• “And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,” Eph 4:11-12.
At this point in Paul’s letter, this is the third instance where “prophets” are connected to “apostles” and mentioned in the same order. They were instrumental in laying the foundation, they received revelation, and as with the apostles once their task was completed, the evangelists, shepherds and teachers would build on that foundation. It’s clear that new testament prophets shared a foundational role alongside the Apostles, and both offices are closed.

God did not change his standard for his mouthpieces when the early church was established. If the office of a prophet has been restored, then we can expect that same standard from the prophets in scripture – 100% accuracy (Deuteronomy 18:20-2). In all of scripture, there are only two kinds of prophets – true prophets and false prophets. The modern prophetic movement that lays claim to the office or gift ignores the standard – they have to in order to excuse their failures. So they have created a category that does not exist – true prophets of God who prophesy falsely most of the time. If we accept the modern prophetic standards of prophecy (hit and mostly miss), what is the acceptable degree of accuracy, and where is this dumbing down of the prophetic taught in scripture? Bethel’s prophet Kris Vallotton sets the bar low, according to Vallotton it boils down to this –
“In the New Testament, there’s nowhere that says getting a false prophetic word makes you a false prophet. It’s all about the heart!” – Chapter, verse?
Vallotton uses Agabus, a New Testament prophet as an example of a prophet that gave a false prophecy. However, Vallotton is wrong about Agabus.
Why would God “restore” an office by downgrading it (infallible -> fallible utterances) and appointing “prophets” that can’t even get a 50/50 prediction correct? NAR prophets rely on Google, general news, and seminar registration details for information. Even a common Octopus had a “success rate of approximately 85.7% when it came to predictions – putting every modern-day prophet to shame.
One of the excuses the NAR & Co use for the pathetic performance of their prophets is that Paul instructed the Thessalonians to “not despise prophecies” and “test all things” (1 Thessalonians 5:20-21). They reason that “test all things” infers that “prophecies” contain a mixture of truth and error. Paul wasn’t warning the Thessalonians about a downgraded version of the prophetic that deceived people more than anything else – he was warning them about false prophets active in the early church. John warned that there would be many: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” 1 John 4:1. What’s overlooked is that Paul was instructing a church that existed when the foundational prophets were active. Are we to believe that God used a lesser kind of prophet like the NAR prophets to lay the foundation?
Furthermore, apart from their false prophecies, every single NAR prophet, like any false teacher, will have serious errors in their doctrine, as well as their character.

Recommended – The Biblical Tests of Prophets and Prophecy


__________________________________________-Notes

1. C. Peter Wagner. Apostles Today. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 1, Kindle.
2. Johnson, Bill. Dreaming With God: Co-laboring With God for Cultural Transformation. Destiny Image. chapter 5, Kindle.
3. C. Peter Wagner; The Reformer’s Pledge. Destiny Image, chapter 9, Kindle.
4. Ibid.
5. Ibid.
6. Bill Johnson. A Life of Miracles: 365-Day Guide to Prayer and Miracles. Destiny Image, Day 86, Kindle.
7. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 1, Kindle
8. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Introduction, Kindle.
9. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Endorsements, Kindle.
10. Randy Clark. The Essential Guide to the Power of the Holy Spirit: God’s Miraculous Gifts at Work Today. Destiny Image, chapter 5, Kindle.
11. Ibid.
12. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 1, Kindle.
13. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 2, Kindle.
14. Randy Clark. The Essential Guide to the Power of the Holy Spirit: God’s Miraculous Gifts at Work Today. Destiny Image, chapter 5, Kindle.
15. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 2, Kindle.
16. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 8, Kindle.
17. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 1, Kindle.
18. Ibid.
19. Randy Clark. The Essential Guide to the Power of the Holy Spirit: God’s Miraculous Gifts at Work Today. Destiny Image, chapter 5, Kindle.
20. Danny Silk. Culture of Honor: Sustaining a Supernatural Environment. Destiny Image, chapter 2, Kindle.
21. Ibid.
22. Ibid.
23. Ibid.
24. Ibid.
25. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Part 3, Kindle.
26. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Introduction, Kindle.
27. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 28, Kindle.
28. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Introduction, Kindle.
29. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 5, Kindle.
30. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 21, Kindle.
31. Vallotton, Kris. Heavy Rain: How to Flood Your World with God’s Transforming Power.
Baker Publishing Group, chapter 2, Kindle.
32.  Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Foreward, Kindle.
33. C. Peter Wagner; The Reformer’s Pledge. Destiny Image, chapter 9, Kindle.
34. Chuck D. Pierce; The Reformer’s Pledge. Destiny Image, chapter 10, Kindle.
35. C. Peter Wagner; The Reformer’s Pledge. Destiny Image, chapter 9, Kindle.
36. Chuck D. Pierce; Rebecca Wagner Systema. The Future War of the Church: How We Can Defeat Lawlessness and Bring God’s Order to the Earth. Regal Books, chapter 6, Kindle.
37. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 2, Kindle.
38. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Introduction, Kindle.
39. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 3, Kindle.
40. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, Conclusion, Kindle.
41. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 6, Kindle.
42. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 2, Kindle.
43. C. Peter Wagner. Apostles Today. Baker Publishing Group, chapter six, Kindle.
44. Danny Silk. Culture of Honor: Sustaining a Supernatural Environment. Destiny Image, chapter 2, Kindle.
45. Johnson, Bill. Dreaming With God: Co-laboring With God for Cultural Transformation. Destiny Image, Endorsements, Kindle.
46. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 28, Kindle.
47. Vallotton, Kris. Heavy Rain: How to Flood Your World with God’s Transforming Power. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 5, Kindle.
48. Vallotton, Kris. Heavy Rain: How to Flood Your World with God’s Transforming Power. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 4, Kindle.
49. C. Peter Wagner. Apostles Today. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 5, Kindle.
50. C. Peter Wagner. Apostles Today. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 2, Kindle.
51. Ibid.
52. Peter Wagner. Apostles Today. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 3, Kindle.
53. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 7, Kindle.
54. Danny Silk. Culture of Honor: Sustaining a Supernatural Environment. Destiny Image, chapter 8, Kindle.
55. Wagner, C. Peter. Apostles and Prophets: The Foundation of the Church. Regal, chapter 2, Kindle.
56. Ahn, Ché. Modern-Day Apostles. Destiny Image, chapter 12, Kindle.
57. Vallotton, Kris. Heavy Rain: How to Flood Your World with God’s Transforming Power. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 4, Kindle.
58. Vallotton, Kris. Heavy Rain: How to Flood Your World with God’s Transforming Power. Baker Publishing Group, chapter 2, Kindle.

 

 

 

 


 

8 thoughts on “THERE ARE NO MORE APOSTLES”

  1. May I respectfully point out that it seems you’re reading the apostolic qualifications incorrectly? Acts 1:22 says, “For one of these must become a witness with us of his resurrection.” This is not a qualification, it is a duty of the new apostle. The new apostle was to join with them and testify with them of the resurrection.

    The single qualification the eleven actually stated was that the new apostle was to have been with them the whole time. This means Paul does not qualify. But since Paul was an apostle, the only conclusion we can come to is that the eleven were not doing anything other than choosing this one replacement apostle.

    1. Hi Rich, apologies for the late reply. I understand what you’re saying – I should have explained it better. You’re correct in that the only qualification for appointing a replacement was that the man had been with them the whole time. This replacement would become a witness of Christ’s resurrection – as would the Apostle Paul who saw the risen Christ. So looking back, all those who held the office of Apostle were a witness of the risen Christ, which is why I used the words “qualifications” – perhaps a better word could be used. Thank you for your comment.

  2. To say we are in an apostolic age remains true whether you believe there are ‘modern day apostles’ or not. The meaning of ‘apostolic’ is to be sent out. We are all sent out. The Great Commission is apostolic. It was ushered in by Christ the Apostles and the Prophets. Therefore it is also prophetic.

    Personally, I don’t believe the apostolic needs to be a reformation. Rather the reality of it has increased since the turn of the late 19th and early 20th Century after a long spell through the dark and Middle Ages of deep and deadly apostasy parading in the guise of Christianity, but with always a persecuted thread of a remnant of the truth to carry us through to what is now an increased understanding of God’s true aims and a better understanding, beginning with Luther and Protestantism, of Biblical truth. This since the Bible was translated into the various languages by the brave people who dared to defy the apostasy.

    You haven’t actually proven, in all your wordiness and anti-NAR sentiment, that there are neither apostles or prophets still in the Church. You’ve given the criteria for the Apostles of Christ, The Twelve, but swiftly dismissed, in your introduction, the fact that there were other apostles mentioned in the New Testament, such as Barnabas, who were neither of the Twelve, nor the Apostle Paul (who was not one of the Twelve), by claiming that they were not in the ‘office’ of Apostle, but, presumably, mere lower level apostles.

    I’m thinking of Andronicus, Junia, Silvanus (Silus), Timothy,Apollos, Titus, and perhaps others hinted at but not named.

    How does that work? Is there another degree of apostle that is not the office? If so, why not other apostles even up to the present day? What scriptural evidence do you have of this separation of ranks? Is not an apostle a person sent out to follow in Christ’s stead in a ministry gift according to His purposes?

    Could it not be more true that the office in fact remains, and that the actual meaning Biblically of ‘apostle’ is to be a sent out one, what we might consider in modern terminology to be a pioneer, or a missionary who goes into the unreached regions, or someone who breaks open an unchurched community with the gospel and plants churches in an unreached region?

    I would also include those ministries that plant churches and have a distinct overseeing person called by God to initiate the process, plant, establish, and develop ministry teams within that structure that goes out into all the world and makes disciples of the nations. That is truly apostolic.

    The interpretation of apostles and prophets to be already dead and gone as a ministry necessity is not born out in scripture. The whole world, in terms of people being born at such an increasingly rapid rate, is not yet won to Christ, and we need all the gifts vis a vis Ephesians 4, in operation in the earth today, and God’s plans and purposes remain as He gave them in the canon, and, especially, for the Church, in the New Testament writings.

    1. “You’ve given the criteria for the Apostles of Christ, The Twelve, but swiftly dismissed, in your introduction, the fact that there were other apostles mentioned in the New Testament, such as Barnabas”
      Intoduction: “Thayer’s Greek Lexicon gives the following definition of the word apostle in scripture (ἀπόστολος): “a delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders. Specially applied to the twelve disciples whom Christ selected…In a broader sense the name is transferred to other eminent Christian teachers; as Barnabas”
      Bad start.
      There is a clear distinction in scripture between the Apostles, Paul, and other NT apostles. Why?

  3. There’s a relative distinction, of course, in that Jesus appointed The Twelve during His earthly ministry, then called Paul, but, clearly, others, such as Barnabas and James the brother of Jesus, were given to the Church as custodians of the ascension gifts by Jesus. Nowhere in scripture is the ascension gift of apostle negated. Nor are prophets. He gave the gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher for specific reasons and has not ended this endowment to the Church.

    The Greek word still, at its basis, means a delegate, messenger, one sent forth. The entire Church age is apostolic, as we are all sent out, but Christ appoints some in the office and ministry of apostle. It takes a huge amount of manipulation of scripture to dismiss the continuation of God’s means of evangelising the world and building the Church.

    1. “God’s means of evangelising the world and building the Church” is not hampered because the office of Apostle is closed. Who is restricted from sharing the gospel today? What do pastors, teachers and evangelists preach? Where do they get those teachings from? The apostolic age ended after John died, hence the term apsotolic age which was characterized by extraordinary signs and wonders. No modern day apostle has met the biblical requirements to hold the office – clearly laid out in the article. If the office of Apostle exists, could you please name a few of them?

  4. I don’t think the onus is on anyone to name apostles. That is Christ’s work. He distributes ministry gifts and offices. The fruit of Apostleship is the ongoing growth of the Church, especially in hitherto unevangelised communities.

    Can you show a single scripture that ends apostles? I have read through the Bible, studied it, and never seen it. Read through the New Testament many times, studied it, and live by it, but never seen it. Nowhere have I seen it say that the gifts of Apostle and prophet are short term until John dies. Surely that would have been an important piece of information for those who live post-John. Perhaps I missed the passages that say that apostles and prophets are temporary offices until John passes away.

    The apostolic age has not ended. The concept of apostleship is to be sent into all the world to make disciples of the nations. Therefore we remain in Christ’s Apostolic age. I don’t mean this in the sense that Catholicism uses it, I.e., apostolic succession, but in the sense that Christ initiated the apostolic age of sending out His disciples to reach the lost and to build the Church. We are still sent. We are still messengers. If it is built on the Apostles and Prophets then it is both apostolic and prophetic.

    There isn’t a single instance in scripture where Christ or the Apostles who gave us the Epistles, Revelation of John and the rest, or Luke declare the end of apostles or prophets. I see no end until Christ comes again.

    The incredible dynamic and growth of the underground Church of China is undoubtedly apostolic, but who would know the names of the apostolic leaders but Christ?

    1. I can’t find a single scripture where any of the original (apart from Judas), or Paul, were replaced. The church is apsotolic in the sense that it’s built on the foundation of the Apostles. Are you familiar with the teachings of the NAR, and the big deal they make about their apostles?

Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top