"If you have not chosen the Kingdom of God, it will make in the end no difference what you have chosen instead" CS Lewis
The Work of Apostles
"The Work of the Apostle"
Every one of the Apostles were first called to be disciples of the Lord.They were radically committed to the service of the Lord.They left all and followed Him.When the Lord asked them in John 6 if they would leave him also, Peter replied, where would we go, you have the word of life.If one is not a disciple of the Lord he can never be an Apostle of the Lord. Apostles are wholly given to the purposes of God.Apostles are the currency of the Lord to be spent in anyway he sees fit.Of all the “Apostles of the Lamb” only John died a natural death, though he had been boiled in oil and banished to the isle of Patmos.True Apostles become dead to their self interests to serve the interests of Christ.
Apostle - Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries G652ἀπόστολοςapostolosap-os'-tol-osFrom G649; a delegate; specifically an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of Christ (“apostle”), (with miraculous powers):—apostle, messenger, he that is sent.
1) A delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders
Jesus is the Chief Apostle
a.Ephesians 2:20 (KJV) 20And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
b.Hebrews 3:1 (KJV) 1Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, ChristJesus;
Two types of Apostles
a.Apostles of the Lamb
i.Matthew 10:2 - 4 (KJV) 2Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; 3Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; 4Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.
i.Appointment of Mathias Acts 1:26 (KJV) 26And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
ii.Appointment of Paul and Barnabas Acts 13:2 - 3 (KJV) 2As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. 3And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. Romans 11:13 (KJV) 13For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office: 2 Timothy (KJV) 11Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.
iii.James the Brother of Jesus Acts 21:18 (KJV) 18And the day following Paul went in with us unto James; and all the elders were present. 1 Corinthians 15:7 (KJV) 7After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
iv.Apollos – The Church viewed Apollos alongside Paul and Peter 1 Corinthians (KJV) 12Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:4 - 6 (KJV) 4For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?5Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? 6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
v.Epaphroditus Philippians 2:25 (KJV) 25Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants.
Because of the restoration of the gift of Apostle there are many that have become self appointed, mama called, and daddy sent “apostles”.The following words should sober the minds of those that aspire to this office apart from the will of God.
Appointed for Death and to be a Spectacle to the World, fools for Christ sake
a.1 Corinthians 4:9 - 10 (KJV) 9For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men. 10We arefools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.
True apostles do not serve themselves – they serve only the interests of Christ
a.Matthew 16:24 (KJV) 24Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
b.Philippians 2:20 - 21 (KJV) 20For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. 21For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s.
Understand and teach the “Mystery of the Church”
a.Rom Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, (KJV)
b.Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:10To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known By The Church The Manifold Wisdom Of God,11According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:(KJV)
a.2 Corinthians (KJV) 12Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.
b.Hebrews 2:3 - 4 (KJV) 3How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; 4God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?
Set the Church in order by Spiritual authority
a.1 Cor And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come.(KJV)
b.Titus 1:5For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:(KJV)
Collect and distribute funds for the relief of the saints
a.1 Cor 16:1Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.(KJV)
b.2 Corinthians 9:1 - 2 (KJV) 1For as touching the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you: 2For I know the forwardness of your mind, for which I boast of you to them of Macedonia, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal hath provoked very many.
2 Corinthians (KJV) 12For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;
Addresses areas that are wanting, lacking, coming behind
a.Titus 1:5For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:(KJV)
b.1Thes 3:9 For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we joy for your sakes before our God;10Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?(KJV)
c.1 Cor 1:4I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;5That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge;6Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you:7So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:(KJV)
a.Acts 6:2 - Acts 6:4 KJV 1And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. 2Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. 3Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. 4But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
Address Structure/Government in the Church
a.1 Cor 12:27 - 1 Cor 12:28 KJV 28And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
b.Heb - Heb KJV 17Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
c.Titus 1:6 - Titus 1:9 KJV 6If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly. 7For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; 8But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate; 9Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
d.1 Tim 3:2 - 1 Tim KJV 1This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5(For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.8Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; 9Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. 10And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless. 11Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. 12Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 13For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in ChristJesus.14These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly: 15But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
Sets in Elders, ordains them
a.Titus 1:4 - Titus 1:5 KJV 5For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:
b.Acts 14:23 (KJV) 23And when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed.
Sets a life pattern before the people
a.Acts 20:17 - 21 (KJV) 17And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church. 18And when they were come to him, he said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, 19Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: 20And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have showed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, 21Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
b.1 Thessalonians 1:5 - 6 (KJV) 5For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.6And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost:
c.1 Corinthians 4:17 (KJV) 17For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.
a.1 Corinthians 3:6 - 9 (KJV) 6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 8Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. 9For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
Establishes doctrine, and by relationship
a.Acts 2:42 (KJV) 42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
b.Romans 6:17 (KJV) 17But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.
c.Romans 16:17 (KJV) 17Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
d.1 Timothy 1:3 (KJV) 3As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
e.Titus 1:9 (KJV) 9Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
The authority of an apostle is by relationship and spiritual life impact, not by organizational hierarchical structure
a.1 Corinthians (KJV) 15For though ye have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in ChristJesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
b.1 Corinthians 9:1 - 2 (KJV) 1Am I not an apostle? am I not free? have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? are not ye my work in the Lord? 2If I be not an apostle unto others, yet doubtless I am to you: for the seal of mine apostleship are ye in the Lord.
They instruct and correct
a.1 Corinthians - 21 (KJV) 19But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power. 20For the kingdom of Godis not in word, but in power. 21What will ye? shall I come unto you with a rod, or in love, and in the spirit of meekness?
a.Matthew 28:19 - 20 (KJV) 19Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
b.Mark 16:15 (KJV) 15And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
Bring accountability to the word
a.2 Thessalonians 3:14 - 15 (KJV) 14And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. 15Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
b.James 1:18(KJV) 18Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
c.James 1:23 - 25 (KJV) 23For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. 25But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
d.Titus 1:9 - 11 (KJV) 9Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers. 10For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: 11Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.
Apostles are people of prayer
a.Luke 6:12 (KJV) 12And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.
b.Acts 1:14 - 15 (KJV) 14These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.15And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
c.Acts 6:4 (KJV) 4But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
d.Philippians 1:3 - 6 (KJV) 3I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, 5For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now; 6Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
Carry the care of the church in their hearts
a.2 Corinthians (KJV) 28Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.
b.Colosians 2:1 (LB)I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and for the church at Laodicea, and for many other believers who have never met me personally.
Confront false apostles
a.2 Corinthians 11:12 - 15 (KJV) 12But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we. 13For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
b.Revelation 2:2 (KJV) 2I know thy works, and thy labour, 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:
c.2 John 1:7 - 11 (KJV) 7For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. 8Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. 9Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.10If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: 11For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
Attack the paradigms that take us from the Lord, his purpose, his ways, and his word
a.2 Corinthians 10:1 - 6 (KJV) 1Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you: 2But I beseech you, that I may not be bold when I am present with that confidence, wherewith I think to be bold against some, which think of us as if we walked according to the flesh. 3For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 6And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.