Wednesday, 4 November 2009

The "New" Apostles

Many blogs have commented an the idea of the "New Calvinists", which has even entered mainstream culture as a concept.

These energetic, culturally relevant pastors seem to be taking aspects of the evangelical world by storm, and also winding up a few people along the way.

I have been thinking.

Are we reaching a stage, through the new media channels, of actually having a new form of "apostolic" input into believers and churches, even groups of churches, through the ministry of people much more distant than before? Do we have the development of "new apostles"?

Whose teaching do we look to for doctrine? Where do we go for training? Whose advice would we seek out about everything from Church strategy to discipline? Whose definition would we use to define an up and coming leader? Who are we hoping will impart spiritual truth and supernatural insight into our lives? Who helps set the temperature we operate at? Who encourages us to mission and planting Churches? Who defines what unity is and who we should work with? That is not an exhaustive list, but it is a useful set of questions.

Is it healthy, that my life can be more influenced by a preacher in a city thousands of miles away than someone I actually know, who knows me, who can speak into my life personally?

Is it a great blessing that thousands can benefit from great ministries in ways never seen before? Or does it mean we are contracting out, maybe even franchising part of the apostolic gift to people we may never meet?

Are the Ephesians 4 gifts limited to people we "know" and have meaningful relationship with or have media channels opened up a bright new world of podcasts and MP4 sermons so we can get our apostolic gifts "off the shelf"?

Has it always been this way through letters, printed pamphlets, books etc it is just now with new media channels there is a saturation of availability?

Do we have more loyalty to our favourite online preacher than someone who has spiritual responsibility for us and our Church?

To be continued...

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