The apostles have the responsibility to perfect the saints, which is to say to bring them into completeness, to fully equip them. They equip them with doctrine and revelation of the Scripture, with the gifts of the Spirit, with government, with local elders and deacons, with the orders and the pattern of the church that God is building, with the foundation on which to build and with many other things. shows that an apostle must be able to lay the foundation:
Ephesians 4:12-16 "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body to the edifying of itself in love."
Only Christ can do any edifying. In understanding Ephesians 4:12-16, you must go back to the main verb, edoken, in verse 11. Christ gave the gifts. He gave the office of apostle. He gave the four ministries. Those gifts are not the persons but the Christ in those persons, as another passage says, "Christ in us, the hope of glory." The text cannot be read any other way than to understand that these gifts are performing all of this work as the gifts proceed from Christ. Grace means, literally, free gift. This is grace, and we know from Scripture that it is grace that does any work that is done. In fact, God could give no greater gift, so He gave us of Himself. He chooses to do it through apostles, ones sent. He chooses to not use those who send themselves or who are sent by men. It is plain from the Greek that it is not gifted people who do any of this work, but rather the Gift Himself does the work through the members. This is true whether it is the apostle who is totally equipping and completing the member or the member who is now also moving in the power and authority of the same gift. When any member comes into submission to the apostle, that person carries the same anointing and authority of the apostle just as long and to the extent that they are in submission. They are not submitting to a man but to Christ Himself. If you can discern the Body of Christ, you will see this. If you see this, flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but your Father in Heaven has revealed it.
You can go many places on the internet, on Christian radio, or in the religious world where you will find people twisting this Scripture. They will twist "apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;" into "teacher/pastors", or "pastor/teacher", or "evangelists, pastors, teachers", or some other misquote. It is evil to twist the traveling elders and deacons, the apostles, into locally abiding pastors. Nowhere in the Bible does it talk about locally abiding pastors. There are locally abiding elders who pastor (care for the church as a shepherd does sheep) the members, and those men receive no money for what they do. They receive a double measure of honor. The Bible says what it says. The Scripture cannot be broken. Satan hates the Bible and he hates God's church and the orders of God's church. If you see someone doing this, run, do not walk, away.
- 1 Corinthians 3:10-11 "According to the grace of God which is given to me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ."
Let God be true and every man a liar.
Apostles are given the responsibility of protecting the entire flock of God from the attack of the enemy, but with so many voices in
the world, each one claiming to be the one that should be listened to, how can you know? You are responsible to be close enough to God
so that you can tell the difference between false apostles and real apostles.
Read the complete
definition of "Apostle."
God restored the gifts of the Spirit and apostles & prophets to the church since 1948. Counterfeits and false gifts abound, but the real is still real.
Last updated: Aug, 2011
v.12-16 Apostles Equip
Toons & Vids
Ephesians 4:7-8 An apostle must be called and appointed by God to be an apostle
Ephesians 4:7, 8, 11 Apostle is an office, not a ministry. Prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers are ministries, not offices.
Ephesians 4:11-16 Five ministry gifts that are vital to the church to fulfill its destiny
Ephesians 4:11-16, The Purpose And Duration Of The 5 Ministry Gifts
Ephesians 4:12-16 The Apostles Equip Believers So the Believers Can Minister (Serve) Until Completeness
Ephesians 4:14 Winds of Doctrine
Ephesians 4:15-16, Body Ministry By That Which Every Joint Supplies
Ephesians 4:20-24 Righteousness Leads to Holiness: be renewed in the spirit of your mind (renewing the mind is repentance, and it is holiness) . . . put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness
Ephesians 4:24-30 Righteousness, Holiness, and Redemption and How they Work Together in You
Ephesians 4:23, Let God Be Your Knowledge, Wisdom, And Understanding Flowing Through Your Mind.
Ephesians 4:29 Let No Corrupt Communication Proceed Out Of Your Mouth, But That Which Edifies, That It May Minister Grace To The Hearers.
Answer to Critic
Appeal to Possibility
Argument to the Future
Love Between a Man and Woman
Righteousness & Holiness
Proof by Atheism
Scriptures About Marriage
The Reason for Rejecting Truth
Witness on the Internet
Flaky Human Reasoning
How Do You Know?
The Real Purpose of the Church
The Real Purpose of Life
From Glory to Glory
REAL Faith--What it IS & IS NOT
REAL Love--What it IS & IS NOT
How to be Led by God
How to Witness
Wisdom: Righteousness & Reality
Holiness & Mind/Soul
Redemption: Free From Sin
Stories Versus Revelation
Circular Reasoning-Who is Guilty?
How Can We Know Anything?
Mind Designed to Relate to God
Answers for the Confused
Fossil Record Says: "Creation"
Avoid These Pitfalls
Public School's Religion
Public School Failures
How can we know anything about anything?
That's the real question