Freeing the APEs

This week I am teaching from Ephesians 4 – the section on ‘apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers’ and arguing that the presence of all 5 is an essential element of a healthy DNA for any church.

Remove any one of the 5 gifts above and you create a mutant religious organisation that might look a bit like a church but in fact isn’t one.

Because we have seen the marginalisation of the APEs for so long I doubt many of us would have a real clue as to what a healthy full developed church would look like, but I for one would really like to have a go at discovering that.

During my time leading Forge I spent a heap of energy trying to help churches re-enervate their APEs and I think we made some progress, but by nature churches are conservative, status quo preserving organisations so giving a free reign to apostles and prophets especially can be scary.

My hope for QBC is that we will be able to empower all 5 of the gifts to function as they were intended and that we will have that experience of seeing the church functioning as Paul describes in Eph 4. Of course the goal of all these gifts is the maturation of the Christian community of attaining towards Christlikeness in every way, so I’m looking forward to seeing what this teaching unearths in people.

4 thoughts on “Freeing the APEs

  1. Would love to hear more of how this works out at QBC. Being part of a very young church it’s interesting to see how the need for the familiar creeps in and the initial, radical vision can quite quickly become a conservative need to preserve the status quo.

  2. Good question Steve – not sure I have a great answer as I’m a bit out of that loop.

    One thought I have is that we could balance the teaching ledger. I remember homiletics and pastoral care being compulsory with evangelism/church planting optional. Maybe we teach all, or make all optional?

    Perhaps courses in creativity, innovation and the like could give the apostles and prophets a place to inhabit.

    Although the biggest shift may be to get more APEs in the theological system so that their heart comes thru and they in turn inspire the APEs in the ‘classroom’

    I’d be interested to hear your own thoughts because i do think that unless we catch it at college level we will perpetuate the existing system

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