NAR “apostles” are as phony as a three-dollar bill

In their blogpost “The Apostles Who Don’t Do Anything,” Cameron Buettel and Jeremiah Johnson of Grace to You team up to answer the question many folks have been asking: Does the Church have modern-day apostles as NAR top dogs purport?  And if what they say is true, who determines when God has commissioned someone as an apostle?

Buettel and Johnson also address the way in which an individual actually becomes an apostle.  One quick example of a so-called apostle that springs to mind is Rafael Cruz, the father of presidential hopeful Ted Cruz.  The elder Cruz once announced that his son is anointed as a “king.”  In NAR teaching, a king has the authority to take control of all sectors of society — government; business/finance; family; Church; education; media; entertainment/arts.  The take over is referred to as the “Seven Mountains Mandate.”  These folks believe Christ cannot or will not return until Christians have taken dominion over the earth.  (More on SMM here and here)

The writers reveal that it costs money to become an apostle and “it is only slightly more difficult (and expensive) than purchasing a season pass to Disneyland.”

Now to Buettel and Johnson’s view on modern-day apostles…

ApostlesIt is not new, it is not apostolic, and it is not a reformation. – John MacArthur on the New Apostolic Reformation

What should we think of self-styled apostles who meet none of the biblical standards for apostleship? They make much of the gift of prophecy but lack the prophetic ability to identify charlatans and phonies in their own midst. They can’t perform apostolic-quality miracles and healings, and their message sounds nothing like what the original apostles preached. The truth is that they don’t do anything that would qualify as “apostolic” by any biblical standard.

Who are these apostles?

The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) is a movement pioneered by C. Peter Wagner. This is what charismatic and continuationist doctrine looks like when taken to its logical conclusion. The NAR claims that not only the gifts, but also the office of apostleship still continues today. And as apostles, they pretend to speak for God and wield His divine authority—but it is all merely a pretense.

What is the rationale behind this movement? According to Wagner, God’s people can only ever return to pure Christianity, as seen in the early church, if they “recognize, accept, receive, and minister in all the spiritual gifts, including the gift of apostle.” [1]

Why do we suggest their apostleship is a sham? According to the New Testament, an apostle had to be:

Undaunted by those biblical requirements, Wagner’s own apostleship was confirmed under somewhat different circumstances. In 1995 two women prophesied that he had received an apostolic anointing. A second prophecy was given in Dallas in 1998 during a bizarre ceremony that Wagner now considers his ordination. [2]

But the “proof” of Wagner’s apostleship came in 2001, in the form of an apostolic decree that God supposedly gave him to pronounce the end of mad cow disease in Europe. [3] Never mind that nearly ten years later, doctors and veterinarians were still diagnosing the disease in people and animals throughout Europe.

Wagner is unperturbed by those failures and shortcomings. Instead, he sees his ordination as the dawning of a new apostolic age. In the foreword of Ted Haggard’s The Life-Giving Church, Wagner wrote:

The New Apostolic Reformation is an extraordinary work of God that began at the close of the twentieth century and continues on. It is, to a significant extent, changing the shape of the Protestant world. [4]

Wagner even goes so far as to describe this era as “The Second Apostolic Age.” His “studies indicate that it began around the year 2001,” although he doesn’t bother to  explain or define what those studies were.  Continue reading

See our White Paper on the New Apostolic Reformation

H/T Glenn Chatfield

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16 Responses to NAR “apostles” are as phony as a three-dollar bill

  1. Manny1962 May 1, 2016 at 7:45 pm #

    Another false movement within Chruchianity, no different than Popes having the gall to say their authority comes from an unbroken lineage straight from Peter. Utter apostasy. The only difference, this stripe of heresy is from Protestants, not Catholics. This movement is false and demonic to its core. More hucksters mishandling the word of God for mammon. As I always say, the problem lies with Christians not reading their bibles, if they would, heresy like this would never be able to flourish, and false teachers would be kicked out of congregations. But, lazy sheep, the lack of biblical discipline and compromise, has led to what the book of Revelation calls The Great Apostasy, or falling away……….well, here we are, daily it gathers steam.

    • Maggie May 1, 2016 at 9:58 pm #

      They do tickle ears well. Plus the spiritual practices are intoxicating, leading the sheep away from the True Shepherd’s voice.

  2. Miz Taz May 2, 2016 at 1:29 am #

    According to the sham listed of scriptures, Paul should not be considered an Apostle. He was not a disciple/apostle called by Jesus (Mark 13:14, Luke 6:13, Acts 1:2). He did not witness the resurrection of Jesus (Acts 1:22). He did not eat with Jesus (Acts 10:41).

    Jesus sent out 72 giving them authority to heal and even demons responded (Like 10:1-20). It doesn’t call them apostles not even disciples. So, if it’s only an apostles’ job… Then healing shouldn’t happen today.

    Sure, Paul tells us God appointed him as an Apostle (Galatians 1:1), I wonder what would be said about that today… I think there’s been a blog or two about that. Although God appointed, Paul waited to receive the right hand of fellowship along with Barnabus (not a disciple) by 3 Apostles, (to become an Apostle). Galatians 2. Pretty sure he didn’t have to pay an annual fee though.

    Am I Leary of anyone who calls themself an Apostle. Darn straight. Just as I am about anyone who says they’re final authority over anything said and done today, especially when they’ve only read things and not talked to the source. Afterall, things written can be easily mistrued and taken out of context, for sure. 

    • Sheila Beers May 2, 2016 at 1:14 pm #

      Paul was/is considered an apostle because he saw the risen Jesus Christ during his “Road to Damascus” experience.

      • berlorac May 2, 2016 at 3:15 pm #

        Yes, Sheila, thank you for pointing that out. Paul says that Christ appeared to him “last of all,” meaning that he was the last of the apostles (1 Corinthians 15:8), called by God that day on the Damascus road, but set apart for this very thing from his mother’s womb (Galatians 1:15-16).

      • Sola Scriptura May 2, 2016 at 6:36 pm #

        Paul actually saw Jesus 5 different times, including when he went into the 3rd heaven. These men are liars and money changers, lording their authority and demonic superpowers over the ignorant. They do not preach the gospel message of sin and repentance at the cross of Jesus Christ, and redemption from sin through the blood of Christ. They preach silly, vain things all designed to build up their reputations all while tickling the ears of the foolish. Sadly, these men, their reputations, and their unrepentant followers will be cast into the lake of fire at the end.
        Jeremiah 14:14
        14 Then the Lord said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.

        Zechariah 13:3-4
        3 And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the Lord: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth.

        4 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive

        ***That…is what is going on, and this is what Jesus meant when he said we would do greater works than these:

    • Marsha West May 2, 2016 at 5:55 pm #

      Miz Taz,

      Paul was definitely an apostle. Here’s an article that deals with Paul’s apostolic authority. I hope you find it helpful.

      Grace & peace,

  3. Manny1962 May 2, 2016 at 8:14 am #

    Paul was called by Jesus, also noticed that none of the other apostles ever questioned it, under the guidance of the Hoky Spirit Paul went on to pen some of the most inspiring books in the bible. If he wasn’t truly called, Paul would have never been able to accomplish what he did, to the point of dying for his Lord. Would NAR “apostles” lay down their lives for Jesus, perhaps take a stone or two in the head, or let’s make it painless, give their bank accounts away to the poor? I think they’ll take a stone or two before giving up their mammon. Paul’s choosing by Christ has never been a point of contention, if Paul was false like the NAR, then the books he penned would be false.

  4. Manny1962 May 2, 2016 at 10:27 am #

    Please excuse typo above, iPad is notorious! Holy Spirit*

  5. Miz Taz May 2, 2016 at 12:36 pm #

    I’m not questioning if he was actually called or not. I absolutely believe he was. Btw… He was called by Jesus After Jesus’ death and resurrection. Paul proved himself before he became an Apostle, and was Not one until he went through proper channels. Many are not doing that today, but does not discredit the fact that Apostleship is still for today. I’m just saying the list of sham scriptures contradicts Paul (and Barnabus’) callings.

    • berlorac May 2, 2016 at 2:39 pm #

      Hello Miz Taz,

      Can you tell me why you think the handshake had to do with apostleship? I’m not seeing that anywhere in the Scriptures. I’ve studied Paul’s ministry extensively over the last 5 years and I submit that your analysis is in error.

      Note that prior to the Jerusalem Council in AD 51, in which the handshake took place, Paul and Barnabas had already gone on a missionary journey. In Acts 14, documenting this journey, the Holy Spirit has no problem calling Paul and Barnabas “apostles” (v. 4). Paul also healed a crippled man. This is what prompts the pagans to hail Paul and Barnabas as gods. Then, in verse 14, Paul and Barnabas are once again referred to as apostles. They then go on to appoint elders in the churches they had established. All of these things tell us that Paul was an apostle more than 5 years prior to the Council handshake.

      Speaking of the Council, this was not for the Jerusalem apostles to confer apostleship to Paul. To the contrary, Paul had gone to Jerusalem to show them that his apostleship and ministry were working just fine. Paul went to Jerusalem to plead with the elders there that the Gentiles should stop being hassled by the Jerusalem Judaizers . The handshake was an agreement that Peter and the Jerusalem apostles would continue to go only among the Jews with the Gospel of the Circumcision while Paul and Barnabas would continue to go to the Gentiles with the Gospel of the Uncircumcision. There is nothing in the “handshake” event that has anything to do with Paul having to go through “proper channels.” No one in Jerusalem imparted anything to Paul, but to the contrary, when the Jerusalem elders saw that Paul’s ministry was separate from their ministry, they shook hands (Galatians 2).

  6. Miz Taz May 2, 2016 at 6:32 pm #

    Paul’s journies are not my point. My point is, again, that Paul’s appointment doesn’t line up 100% with.the scriptures given in the article for an Apostolic title. But yet, he was without a doubt Apostles.

    And the sham list is apparently a moot point now anyway as, berlorac clearly defined, Paul was the last appointed apostle (I Corinthians 15:8). So, that’s really all the article needed to say; Apostolic leadership is not for today.

    I Corinthians 12:27-30 28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues[d]? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.

    • Sola Scriptura May 2, 2016 at 6:43 pm #

      Sadly, none of the NAR people are worthy of being apostles. They lie and claim to heal…yet the die of diseases…John Paul Jones, Oral Roberts and Bob Jones to name a few. Why didn’t they name and claim their healings? It is right and good per Galatians 2 to point out that these men were wicked money changing liars and hypocrites. It is sad…very sad, but we must protect the flock.
      Todd White does the sill leg extension trick and NEVER preaches repentance. He preaches himself. I have seen a video in Turkey where a local preacher begs Heidi Baker to preach the gospel to a muslim woman, but all Heidi wants to do is try and heal her. Even when they are leaving she flatly refuses to try and save this poor woman’s soul. That is as horrendous as it gets and zero to do with Christ. These people are liars and we are told to MARK and avoid them, so do not fear naming names.

  7. Manny1962 May 2, 2016 at 8:17 pm #

    Hi B! Glad you’re here!

    • berlorac May 3, 2016 at 10:16 am #

      Hello, brother. Good to see you!

  8. Bruce May 2, 2016 at 11:10 pm #

    I agree with you but have a question about God giving to the church Apostle, Prophets, Teachers, Evangelists and Pastors, 4 of these are in the church today, why not Apostles???

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