Recognising Emerging Apostolic ministry.
On one of my previous blogs about the apostolic, the question was asked about how we recognise emerging apostles in this fresh move of God. There is definitely a new breed arising and I have covered some of what I think the new apostolic does and doesn’t look like in previous posts.
Here are some thoughts on hallmarks that help us recognise emerging apostolic types. I would like to add that it takes time to form apostolic ministry as a lot of this is connected to a person’s relationship with God and their depth of maturity.
1) They are people who do signs and wonders. In a western context any consistent breakthrough in this arena is to be celebrated. A passion for the manifestation of God’s Spirit and gifts has to be core to their values and priorities.
2) Essentially equipping. So they create space, equip and release others to do signs and wonders, and emerge in their own gifting.
3) Fathering/mothering- Apostles can bring others of significant gift through into ministry roles. They can foster team harmony, gain people’s trust, work with others of strong and diverse gifting. Too many people have been burned by significant leaders, we need a fresh outbreak of trust and honour for true 5 fold ministry teams to emerge and flourish.
4) Create a whole culture with durable values. A culture that hosts and pursues the presence of God well; that fosters freedom, not control, or fear; a non hierarchical, gift and anointing based environment; where freedom and love combine to produce cohesion.
5) They have revelation of the mysteries of Christ; a clear understanding of the new covenant, and therefore are free from legalism and judgementalism. They are grace and mercy people with a strong sense of the believers’ new identity. They can make a clear break with old covenant thinking and the religious spirit that attaches to it. They know the Father heart of God.
6) Perseverance through trial and opposition. These are not people who have never tasted difficulty, they have been tested, they have not withered in the heat of trial, and carry no bitterness to men or offence with God in the aftermath.
7) They have a vision for world transformation that is culture transformation, not just conversion (but of course including this)
8) They see the church as the body, one new man, not divided by culture, age, or race
9) Someone who affects atmosphere in meetings and with other people.
10) Their heart is for kingdom, they love what God does wherever he does it, they are not empire builders.
So to identify emerging apostles we need to know them. Do they do the miraculous, are they creating a unified but free environment, is His presence a reality. We need to discern whether they are leading through control or love. Are they and what they are producing durable. And can they sustainably work with strong people and bring through other gifted people. Hope this helps the debate – I could have provided scriptures for all the above, but thought I should be brief.
To almost quote Kris Vallaton - the world has yet to see the full power of a New Testament apostle - but I think we are getting closer.