Why are some persons apostolic and others not? Jesus is the original apostle. This is so because as a son He represented His Father. But not only was He a Representative. He was one with His Father. As a Son He was the extension and Revealer of His Father. Although distinct from His Father He was the manifestation of His Father. These features are the essence of human apostleship. A human apostle is Father’s life multiplied.
Jesus was one with His Father and revealed His Father. This was His cause. He did not live in the law or represent the law as some would have us believe. He and His Father were one. One with His Father He was the extension and representative of His Father in the world. This genuine apostleship.
Jesus represented to the world, firstly union with God. Secondly who His Father was. He did this in His person being fully God and the exact representation of Father’s being. As the expression of His Father He did what Father was doing. He didn’t need tongues to give Himself a leg-up into heaven. He and Father were one. He didn’t need visions and dreams. What Father knew Jesus knew. At the same time He was filled with the Spirit and knew what people were thinking. He had the Spirit without limit. The gifts are always rooted in our sonship in our Father. So is apostleship.
Jesus did what He was meant to be doing. As a result He always bore the authority and revelation of His Father. The effect was to have the Spirit without limit and to be a son of God in spirit and in truth.
Jesus lived from His Father and not from the law, not from religion or the expectations of the people with religious influence. He was subservient neither to tradition or the culture of the time. But He was answerable to His Father and lived from Him as an obedient Son.
We need to ask ourselves what the new covenant has to do with apostles and apostleship. The answer is everything. Apostleship as a person and as the ministry of true witness flows from the union of human sons with our heavenly Father. Apostleship today is exercised in the same way – in union with God.
Apostleship depends not on sincerity, length of service, size of one’s congregation or ability to do miracles in Jesus name. The foundation of apostleship is a Father/Son relationship. A relationship unobstructed by law and religion. One cannot be tied to the law and be a new testament apostle because the law separates us from Father. In Jesus we have radical at-one-ment with God. The result is that the Believer and Father are one. Why? Because the Believer lives in Jesus and as such has the same relationship Jesus had with His Father.
NEW COVENANT UNION
Here we are looking at Christ as our life specifically as this applies to Fatherhood and Sonship. We are taking about intimate union of a human son with the divine Father. This is entirely a NEW COVENANT RELATIONSHIP where one’s person is in God in union with Father, on account of Jesus Christ. In this relationship there are no diluting obstacles like the law or old testament rites. Here we and our Father are one. We are in direct, un-obstructed relationship with Father.
What are the implications? In no way can one be an apostle if connected to the law. Sure we can be apostles of religion but not of His Kingdom.
Apostleship, as modelled by Jesus is a new covenant reality. It did not exist in the old testament because people like John the Baptist and Moses, Godly as was their life, were not one with God. There was no incarnation and there had been no at-one-ment. Apostleship is rooted in union with God – never in religious separation and pre-cross alienation.
The second implication flows from it. One cannot move in the spirit of apostleship or be an apostle of His Kingdom if we have retained an old covenant mindset and practice. This is because we have no entered union with God which is the Spirit of sonship – even though it is ours. We are not one with our Father experientially even though we have been made one through the cross and the Spirit. We are not the living expression of our Father in our individuality even though this is our inheritance. Why? The barrier of the law has annulled our union with God in our minds and the Spirit of Sonship.
We need the mind of Christ.
If bad teaching, ignorance or wilful adherence to ‘our perspective’ over the gospel of the Kingdom have denied us the union with God that is ours and left us separated from our complete inheritance as sons and daughters of God – the way ahead is repentance and aligning ourselves with what God has already done. No need to work harder. Just rest harder in what is already yours: Union with God.