How long were apostles and prophets supposed to remain in Christ's church?
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|Like Roger Williams,
many sincere people have earnestly searched for the
church of Christ but finally concluded that it did not
exist. When Williams left the Baptist church in 1639,
instead of uniting with another institution, he remained
a Seeker -- one who believed that no true church existed.
From that time forward, he lived a life of self-imposed
exile. After a sincere and exhaustive search, he was
forced to conclude that the true church of Christ could
not be found.
The Ephesian letter states that apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers are to remain in Christ's church until it achieves what is called the "measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ." We do not observe any evangelical churches affirming this biblical truth. Therefore how could any evangelical churches be the church of Christ?
If you could find the true church of Jesus Christ, what would it look like? Would you know if you had found it? The Bible describes some of the elements of Christ's New Testament church.
Why did Christ place these offices in His church?
How long did Paul's epistle command that these offices were to remain in Christ's church?
Many evangelical teachers promote a theory about an "apostolic age" in which the New Testament church supposedly achieved the "measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" long ago. Because of this they say that there is no longer any need for apostles or prophets. If that is the case, there would also no longer be a need for evangelists, pastors or teachers either. Rather than waiting on God to restore His church, they have created their own.
How does Christ's church benefit by having the above offices?
The true church of Christ will affirm that apostles and prophets continue to be necessary today. The fact is that evangelical churches have not been willing to listen to God's voice, to receive direction from Him. Instead, they run ahead of Him creating churches that He never called into existence.
The following verses demonstrate that apostles continued to be called by God long after the cross:
Apostles continued to be called by God in the New Testament church. What biblical injunction can anyone present that this practice was to cease? Based on Ephesians 4, a doctrinally sound church will affirm the need for apostles and prophets.
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