. . . it is very feasible to believe that all but one of the Apostles suffered and died a martyr’s death, even if we can’t be sure of the exact details.Amidst some uncertainty, one thing is clear—the reason given for their death was the same in all accounts. They were killed because they proclaimed to have seen Christ die and then to have seen Him alive. They all died because of an unwavering, unrelenting claim that Christ rose from the grave. They died for Easter.
Personally, in my mind, the gruesome death of the Apostles as recorded below was one of the greatest gifts that God ever gave to the Church. It contributes much to Christian apologetics by answering the “how do you know?” question concerning the resurrection of Christ.
The following is my attempt to take the best of all the sources and share the most likely scenario for each Apostle’s death. At the risk of spoiling some of the “legends,” I have given each account a grade of probability from A (highest probability) to D (lowest probability).
Read through the accounts of their deaths. Use it this Easter. Tell your children. This may sound odd, but in a very real sense, I thank God for bringing about the Apostles’ deaths, for in their deaths they sealed their testimony in blood making our faith in the risen Christ built upon a solid foundation.
Unsettled ChristianityOne blog to rule them all, One blog to find them, One blog to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.
There is increasing concern about the end of the world and 2012, but what did Christ say would be the greatest deception of the last days? Check out this interesting article!
The Son is in the Father because his whole being is proper to the Father’s essence…so that whoever sees the Son sees what belongs to the Father and understands that the Son’s being, because it comes from the Father, is therefore in the Father. The Father is in the Son, because the Son is what is from the Father and belongs to him. They relate to one another as the radiance to the sun, the word to the thought expressed and the stream to the fountain. Whoever contemplates the Son like this contemplates what belongs to the Father’s essence and knows that the Father is in the Son. (Discourses Against the Arians 3.23.3 ACD vol 1 pg72)
Those who set up some new teaching have a way of twisting the Scriptures to make them fit whatever it is they want them to say. The apostolic word says, “If anyone preaches any gospel to you other than that which you have received, let him be anathema.” Therefore, a disciple of Christ should accept no new teaching beyond what has once been committed to us by the Apostles. (Disputation of Archelus and Manes . 40, ACD vol. 1 p21)
This week, briefly, we have been examining the minsistry in the Church. As I have stated several times, growing up in a monarchical ministry has caused me to see things differently. Now, I believe that instead of one alone, the ministry of the local congregation should be plural. Not only does it allow one to be in submission to another, but spirits are tried and burdens shared.
Growing up in a fundamentalist church, I easily excepted the idea that one man alone made the decisions for the congregation. I found it odd the first time that I set through a Baptist business meeting, and odder evens till when the Pastor asked permission to spend the money. How in the world could the congregation do this!!! It was so unbiblical – or was it?
We are given very little evidence of the role of a minister in the Apostolic Church (the Church governed by the Apostles, as found in the New Testament) so we must turn to the single person who gave us our pastoral examples – the Apostle Paul.
The Goals of the Ministry are Simple:
Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. (Eph 4:12-15 NLT)
“All too often those ‘in charge,’ be they clergy, boards, vestry, sessions, or what have you, tend to think of the church as ‘theirs.’ They pay lip-service to it being ‘Christ’s church, after all,’ then proceed to operate on the basis of very pagan, secular structures, and regularly speak of ‘my’ or ‘our’ church. …. The church belongs to Christ, and all other things–structures, attitudes, decisions, nature of ministry, everything–should flow out of that singular realization.” – 1 Corinthians, NICNT, 135 (HT - Εις Δοξαν.)
I have good news to share with those of you out there that have been affected by Pastor Star R. Scott – he’s being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service.
J. Lee Grady, the mouth piece of the charismatic-pentecostal movement, and supporter of the Third Wave, etc… has a new article out.
Myself, I believe in apostolic people, but I believe that the office of ‘Apostle’ has died out, at least in the manner that the New Testament presents it. In Ephesians 2.20, Paul says that the Church has been built on the the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, with Christ being the first cornerstone. The Apostles and Prophets had the authority to establish the Church, to bring the doctrine out, and to guide the Church from Jerusalem to the uttermost parts of the word. They were the sent ones, sent by Jesus Christ to carry not only the gospel, but the doctrine of the Church. How many times did Paul tell Timothy to hold to what the Apostles had taught, and then Peter and Jude, who command that we listen to the words of the Apostles? The New Testament Apostles had authority and weight to establish the Church, and to issue forth the correct pattern of words (2nd Timothy 1.13).
While we may be apostolic, in that we are still sent, I do not believe in the office of the Apostle as defined by the New Testament exists today. Further, I do not believe the ceasing of this office should be connected to ideas on Cessationism. Do you really believe that the office of the New Testament Apostle is still in existence? Does anyone today have the authority to issue commands to the Church? Doctrine?
For many years traditional denominations taught that the ministry of the apostle passed away after the New Testament era. It was assumed that the only people who served in apostolic roles were early followers of Jesus who witnessed His resurrection. Cessationists (those who believe that miracles stopped after the canon of Scripture was completed) believe that healing, deliverance, prophecy and all other supernatural phenomena ceased and that apostles are no longer necessary.