Terry Virgo On Apostles Today

Over on Terry Virgo’s Blog, he has written a post entitled apostles today. This complements some of the interesting things he had to say on this subject in the recent interview here on my blog. If you haven’t read that interview yet, it can be found in the following posts:

Here is an extract from Terry’s blog post. He promises to write more about this in the days to come. In the meantime, you might want to have a look at an old post of mine “Apostles Are Meant For Today.”

“As a Charismatic and a Bible-loving Christian, I believe that when Jesus ascended he gave gifts to his church. Exalted to the right hand of God, he received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and poured out not only the Pentecostal blessing described in Acts 2:33 but also gave apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers (Ephesians 4:11) to help equip his church and bring it to maturity.

These variously named gifts obviously differ in their function and relevance. It doesn’t say ‘he ascended and gave priests’ or ‘he ascended and gave clergymen.’ He gave diverse and distinct gifts. The evangelist differs from the prophet. The apostle differs from the pastor. Otherwise these titles are redundant—a waste of space.

If the inspired Scriptures distinguish between varieties of ministries and clearly imply that we need this diversity of gifting to bring about God’s ultimate intention, why do so many Bible-believing Christians and churches ignore the obvious implications?

For instance, the apostles of the New Testament had a distinct task from the evangelists or pastors, and it wasn’t, as so many of our evangelical brothers suggest, simply to write Scriptures! The apostle Barnabas (Acts 14:14) wrote no Scripture nor did most of the Twelve, while Luke, nowhere described as an apostle, wrote much of the New Testament.

What was the work of an apostle? Surely he was pre-eminently a church founder, giving clear identity to the new communities of believers that began to multiply around the Mediterranean as described in the book of Acts. Perhaps Paul’s most succinct description of himself as an apostle is found in 1 Corinthians 3:10 where he claimed to be ‘a wise master builder’ who had laid the foundation of the Corinthian church.”

Terry Virgo

About Adrian Warnock

Adrian Warnock has been a blogger since April 2003, and part of the leadership team of Jubilee Church, London for more than ten years, serving alongside Tope Koleoso. His book, Raised With Christ - How The Resurrection Changes Everything was published by Crossway, January 2010. Read more about Adrian Warnock or connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google+.

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