by Lori Eldridge
(All scriptures are NIV unless otherwise noted.)
Acts 1:21-26, "Therefore it is necessary to choose one of the men who have been with us the whole time the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from John's baptism to the time when Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become A WITNESS WITH US OF HIS RESURRECTION."
Acts 5:32, Peter and the other apostles stated, "We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him."Therefore, ALLLLLLL the apostles were eye witnesses to Christ and his Resurrection.
Luke 1:1-4, "Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, JUST AS THEY WERE HANDED DOWN TO US BY THOSE WHO FROM THE FIRST WERE EYEWITNESSES and servants of the Word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught."Please notice that we can know the certainty of the things we are being taught by eyewitnesses (this includes the many apostles and prophets of N.T. times who witnessed the Resurrection who are not among the 12). This means we have no certainty of those things we are being taught by those who are not eyewitnesses and trying to tell us there are "New and Improved" revelations from God.
1 Cor. 9:1, "Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord?"Paul was the last apostle (He witnessed Christ on the Road to Damascus):
1 Cor. 15:8, "Then he [Christ] appeared to James, then to ALLLLL the apostles, and LAST of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born."Please notice Paul stated he was the LAST apostle to witness Christ.
2 Peter 1:12 "So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and ARE FIRMLY ESTABLISHED in the truth YOU NOW HAVE. . . . And I will make every effort to see that after my departure [death] you will always be able to remember these things."Please notice that what they had already was enough to firmly establish them in the truth and Paul wanted them to remember what he said--and he also explicitly stated there would be no other apostles after him--otherwise there wouldn't be such a great need for them to remember what he said.
"For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come. He who has ears, let him hear."We are warned about false teachers and prophets in the last days:
2 Peter 2:1 "But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you."Please notice that Peter and Jude did not say we are to listen to the apostles and prophets living in OUR day but rely on the apostles and prophets in THEIR DAY, and we are instead to BEWARE of the apostles and prophets of OUR day. This means we have to avoid anyone who attempts to add or take away from what the apostles and prophets and the scriptures have relayed to us and Peter and Jude called them "godless men." And you can tell they are godless men when they deny Jesus Christ, i.e., they preach a false gospel--usually one of works (i.e., you must endure the Tribulation and be purified before you are saved, etc.) which betrays a lack of understanding of Grace and thus a false Gospel.
2 Peter 3:2 "I want you to recall the words spoken in the PAST by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles."
2 Peter 3:16 "His [Paul's] letter contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other scriptures, to their own destruction."
Jude 3-4 "I felt I had to write and urge you to CONTEND [earnestly struggle] for the faith that was ****ONCE FOR ALL*** entrusted to the saints. For certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord."
"In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe." (Heb 1;1-3)The following scripture is usually used to prove that there are prophets and apostles today:
"It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, . . ."" (Eph. 2:20)However what they fail to do is read this passage in context. If you start back in verse 7 you will see that this is talking about GIFTS of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor/teacher, not the office:
"But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says: 'When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men.'"" (Eph. 2:20)
Eph 2:19-21 "Consequently YOU are no longer foreigners and aliens but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, BUILT ON THE FOUNDATION of the Apostles and Prophets with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In Him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit"In the Greek Interlinear bible the word "built" is "having been built," it is in an aorist participle passive tense, i.e., this was an action completed in the past that occurred to the subject of the sentence, i.e., the Church, by the Apostles and Prophets of the N.T. It is saying the Church WAS built on the foundation, not that it "IS" being built.
"It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Chirst." (Eph 4:11-16)Why did Chirst give us apostles, prophets, etc.? To Prepare God's people for works of service. What were those works of service? One of those works was to speak forth the Word of God, i.e., to write the scriptures, i.e., the office of Prophet. Another was to build up churches founded on that same Word---i.e., Apostles. And then we have the evangelists and pastors and teachers to teach this Word and to keep these churches filled.
"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;." (1 Timothy 4:1)(1 Timothy 4:1)
"In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, BUT IN THESE LAST DAYS he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful Word." (Hebrews 1:1-3)Notice it says "in the past" God spoke thru the prophets but NOW he speaks thru the Son. This should be enough to squelch this argument of prophets being needed since Christ--who was the great prophet that was to come that God promised to Moses (Deut 18:18).
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