What is an Apostle?
We are living in a time when, perhaps more than any other in history, it is important to discern the times in which we live. God is currently restoring the ministry of Apostle within the local Church. The apostolic ministry has been set in the Church to oversee and release all believers into their callings and destinies. Apostles are a gift to the Church from Jesus Christ Himself.
Ephesians 4:11-12 (NIV)
11 So Christ Himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip His people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.
1 Corinthians 12:28 (NIV)
28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.
The Five Fold Ministry
The five fold ministry has been described as God’s hand extended to the Church to equip her for the work of the ministry. In that illustration, the little finger of the hand refers to the teacher. It is fashioned such that it is able to enter into the ear so that God is able to go beyond our hearing and impart understanding of the truth of His Word and of the things of the Spirit.
The ring finger speaks of the Pastor. He is wed to the people of God and united to them with a heart connection.
The longest finger signifies the office of the Evangelist reaching out into the world ‚Äì drawing sinners from the darkness.
The index finger is the pointing finger which speaks of the ministry of Prophet who points out sin and unrighteousness in the Church and in the land. The Prophet gives direction to the Body of Christ as he hears God’s voice for the Church and the nation. The Prophet says, “This is where the Church is going and this is what you should be doing about it!”
Lastly, the Apostle is represented by the thumb: the grasping ministry. As the thumb is the only digit able to easily touch all the other fingers, the Apostle is able to touch the other four ministries and work with them toward a unified effort to accomplish the will of God for the Church.
Jesus is the master Apostle
Hebrews 3:1 (NIV)
Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our Apostle and high priest.
The duties of an Apostle are numerous. God gives the grace to fulfill the functions of this ministry and faithfully carry them out. Apostles operate in faith and know that they are anointed to carry out the different functions of this ministry. More people will be influenced and blessed by the anointing that is released through an Apostolic Ministry. It is a greater anointing that carries a greater degree of power and authority.
The following are some of the functions of an Apostle:
Apostles are pioneers.
Apostles plant Churches.
Apostles ordain Elders.
Apostles reform and bring change.
Apostles teach, preach and set doctrine.
Apostles release revelation concerning the plans and purposes of God.
Apostles raise up and establish teams and ministries.
Apostles establish and oversee.
Apostles confirm and strengthen local Churches.
Apostles bring judgment and correction.
Apostles defend the faith.
Apostles lay foundations.
Apostles root out, tear down, throw down, destroy, build and plant.
Apostles bless the poor.
Apostles help perfect the saints.
Apostles release and activate.
Apostles help release the fullness of the Holy Spirit.
Apostles bring strategies to the Church.
Apostles operate in signs, gifts and wonders.
Apostles declare and decree.
Apostles remit sins.
Apostles teach as well as prophecy.
Apostles are sent to destroy the works of the devil.
Apostles expose wolves who try to divide the Church.
Apostles challenge and encourage performance from the saints.
Apostles mobilize large groups of people for ministry.
We are living in a time when God is moving powerfully by His Spirit. We have the privilege of being part of this present restorative movement. We do not need to look longingly to the past to see what God did in previous generations, but we can participate in what He is doing NOW!
We want to see an outpouring of the presence of the Lord that is unprecedented in our time. Thus far, God has given us only a small taste of His glory, only showers of blessing. The timing for this outpouring is in God’s hands. We cannot make it happen but we can surely cooperate with it by preparing ourselves. The Church is going to rise up in a dimension of wisdom and power that will cause others to come and stand in awe. People will want our prayers, counsel, and help. They will be flocking to the Church to receive and be a part of what God is doing in our midst.
Time and time again the glory of God was manifested throughout the Old Testament. It was a cloud so bright and thick that priest’s couldn’t stand upright to minister in the temple. Other times the glory manifested as a devouring fire, mist, or smoke.
It showed up in the New Testament and shined as a bright light around Saul of Tarsus on the road to Damascus, and glory flashed as lightning of God to raise Jesus from the dead. We know the glory of God is on the inside of every believer as well.
Miracle Working Glory
In the Old Testament, God proved His existence. In the New Testament, God not only proves His existence; He also shows His mercy and compassion to a lost word. As we approach the end-times, we will see a parallel move of miracles and healings working together. Healings show the mercy of God to those who want it, and miracles show God’s existence to those who do not believe. The greatest importance of the glory is that it will move us toward God’s plan for the harvest.
Yet, ever since the Day of Pentecost, we have encountered different measures of God’s glory showing up on the earth or in our Churches. We have read accounts of revivals and witnessed firsthand waves of glory come in for a season and go out for a season.
As New Testament Church principles are restored to the Church, we are going to see an out-pouring of the presence of the Lord that is unprecedented in our time. God is restoring His Church where He wants His very presence where His shekinah glory will be visible in our services. God is building His Church that will cause others to come and stand in awe.
Haggai 2:9 (NIV)
The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the LORD Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the LORD Almighty.”
What Is The Glory Of God?
It is more accurate, however, to ask, “Who is the glory of God?” The glory of God is the Spirit of God “when He brings His very presence in our midst. We see this more clearly in the book of Romans”
Romans 6:4 (NIV)
We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
There is a bright cloud of God’s presence on the horizon of time and it is racing in our direction.
2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV)
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His image with ever- increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
Are we ready? Are we willing to get serious with God in a final way? It will require our total dedication and commitment and obedience to His Word.