The Two Apostleships
John 17:18
As you have sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.…

The sense of apostleship must enter into all true Christian work. The Lord Jesus takes but the rank of an apostle - speaks to his Father as having made him an apostle into the world. He grows up to manhood, not as other lads in Nazareth, to choose an occupation and walk in life for himself, but to take a path divinely chosen. He both is sent and knows well who sent him. The highest good is only to be got out of the Lord Jesus by treating him according to his apostleship. Treating Jesus otherwise than as sent, we insult and slander him. He comes not with his own claim, but with the claim of the invisible Father.

I. THE APOSTLESHIP OF JESUS. "Thou didst send me into the world." That is the feeling of Jesus, and we must not dispute it. Not a discourse of Jesus, not a deed of Jesus, but has stamped across it, "Sent of the Father." Sent into the world:

1. For the world's need. None the less so because multitudes live and die, practically denying the need of Jesus. Everything depends on what is aimed at. A man may say reading and writing are not necessary because he has been able to carry bricks and mortar all his life without knowing how to read and write. But it is plain that Jesus Christ has become a necessity to many, for they have died rather than deny him. To say that we need him not only proves our own blindness and self-ignorance. God sends no causeless messengers. If human prophets, entirely of the lineage of humanity had been enough, Jesus would never have come.

2. For the glory of the Sender. He expressly says, "I have glorified thee on the earth." We are to judge of the Sender by the Messenger. Jesus was qualified to speak and act freely and largely, out of a heart that was in full harmony with the heart of God. He could adapt himself without the slightest hesitation or failure to the ever-varying wants of men. Many had come before him and walked and talked with men in the name of God, avowing that they were the mouthpieces of Jehovah, and beginning their addresses with, "Thus saith the Lord." But then the consciousness of an evil heart and an imperfect life was upon them all. Isaiah says, "Woe is me... I am a man of unclean lips!" But no one ever heard Jesus speak in this fashion. Those who have not yet beheld in Jesus the glory of the eternal God have yet to receive him in spirit and in truth.

II. THE CONSEQUENT APOSTLESHIP OF THE SERVANTS OF JESUS. Jesus was going from the world, and had to send others into the world to continue his work. They must be such as the world can take knowledge of. And Jesus sent them into the world as he himself was sent, for the world's great need and the increase of the glory of God. Then in due season, their apostleship being over, they were gathered into the invisible. But Jesus went on sending, and has gone on sending ever since. "Missionary" is only a more modest word for "apostle." All of us must have some apostleship in us, or we can do little for Jesus. And all manifest and special apostles we should ever observe and encourage, holding up their hands, and considering their appeals with understanding minds and sympathizing hearts. He who receives the apostle receives Jesus, and he who receives Jesus receives the Father who sent him. - Y.

Parallel Verses
KJV: As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

WEB: As you sent me into the world, even so I have sent them into the world.

The Sanctification of Christ
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