What is the “main thing” that is being restored through the “apostles” of today?
I was recently asking myself, “If there was one thing that would benefit the Church the most from the appearance of apostolic ministry today, what would it be?” I believe Holy Spirit responded to my thoughts with this overview of recent “restoration.” The Word of Faith Movement brought a restoration of the necessity of having the Word of God in our hearts. Many churches called themselves “Word Churches” because of the emphasis on “being in the Word.”
We all carried two or three Bible translations and notepads to the service in those days. Many churches even had their own “Notebooks” spiral bound with their logo on the front so people could take down copious notes from the messages that poured forth from the teaching gifts. People wanted to learn about “faith” during that move of God, one prominent teacher said, “If you get the Word, you get the faith, it’s like water. If you get the water, you get the wet with it.” The “Faith Movement” definitely brought back the importance of God’s Word in the life of a Christian.
Then the “Prophetic Movement” erupted in the church. What was restored during this time? I believe this mighty move of God restored the “gifts and callings” to believers. Spiritual gifts were identified and made active as the prophetic spirit flowed in churches across the land. There was less emphasis on the Word of God, and more emphasis on spiritual experiences as believers were learning to “flow in the anointing” and minister to one another.
So what is the “Apostolic Movement” bringing to us presently? We have learned about Church Government and Divine Order. We have witnessed “apostolic networks” developing as “new wineskin” organizations for those seeking covering for their ministries. We have also heard much about “societal transformation” and “kingdom advancement” coming from today’s apostles. What is the one thing that we need to hear more about from the apostolic community? If the Faith Movement restored the place of the Word of God in our lives, and the Prophetic Movement restored spiritual gifts and callings, should the Apostolic Movement speak to the “life and character” of believers? Much of the apostolic writings of the New Testament deal with the life and character of God’s people.
It seems that the greatest need of today’s Church is a restoration of “Godly character” like Paul said in Titus 2:11-14, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared, teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly desires, we should live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world...” The apostles seemed to be very concerned about how people lived before a watching world, and how they represented Jesus Christ. Paul told Timothy, “Nevertheless, the foundation of the Lord stands sure, therefore let everyone who names the name of the Lord, depart from iniquity.” (2 Tim.2:19). In my opinion, the greatest contribution apostles can make today is to restore a “standard of living” to the Body of Christ where the “righteousness of the law is fulfilled in us who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1-4)
It appears that with all the teaching about the role of Apostles in today’s church, “righteous living” is not a hot seminar topic as of yet. The “cross of Christ” as the “end of sin” in the life of a believer was an “apostolic word” in the beginning. With many of our prominent Christian leaders failing to live according to “leadership standard” in the New Testament, it appears that apostles have a job to do in this regard. May God give us all boldness to preach the “Word of Righteousness,” and live the same with an “apostolic accountability” to one another.
Dr. John Polis (c) 2010 Website: http://rfiusa.org