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Apostles: The Fathering ServantApostolic ministry today

Present-day apostleship has become a big issue. Apostles: The Fathering Servant by Bill Scheidler (City Bible Publishing, 2001, ISBN 1-886849-81-1) looks at its biblical basis, but also draws on the outworking of that biblical basis at City Bible Church in Portland, Oregon, USA. An interview with Dick Iverson forms a valuable epilogue.

The writing style is rather pedestrian and the author, like many US writers, insists on using the New King James Version. But don't let this stop you reading what is probably the best available book on the subject. It ducks none of the key issues, and both Scheidler and Iverson are warm-hearted, faithful servants of God with a lot of fruit to show for their outworking of these principles.

Paul was never intentionally alone in his apostolic work. (p67)

Perhaps the key to understanding the ministry of an apostle is the word 'father.' Paul said that while 'you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers' (1 Corinthians 4:15).  (p80)

There is no spiritual pecking order in the body of Christ.  (p131)

Paul did not want to be identified with what he referred to as false apostles who were only interested in the churches for what they could get out of them. He spoke of those who ministered for selfish ends and used flattering words to take big offerings (see 1 Thessalonians 2:5). Paul wanted to stay as far away from that spirit as he could.  (p173)

There are far too many ministries functioning outside of the local church today. The church is still the only institution ordained of God to fulfil the purposes of God in the earth (see Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 3:10-11). Every ministry, regardless of his or her specific calling, should be under the authority of a local church, fully submitted to its eldership and fully accountable to them in their ministry expression.  (p177)

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