Apostolic
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (a.) Alt. of Apostolical.

2. (n.) A member of one of certain ascetic sects which at various times professed to imitate the practice of the apostles.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
APOSTOLIC AGE

ap-os-tol'-ik aj.

1. The Mission:

(1) When the disciples realized that they had seen the risen Christ for the last time and that it had now become their duty to spread His message, they gathered themselves together and restored the number of "witnesses" to the appointed Twelve. Immediately afterward the outpouring of the Holy Spirit gave them the signal to begin work. At first this work was rigidly centered in Jerusalem, and the first journeyings were the result of forcible dispersion and not of planned effort (Acts 11:19). But pilgrims to the feasts had carried away the gospel with them, and in this way Christianity had been spread at least as far as Damascus (Acts 9:2, 19). The dispersion itself widened the circle to Cyprus and to Antioch and marked the beginning of the Gentilework (Acts 11:19-20). Here the extreme prominence of Paul's ministry in the New Testament should not obscure the success of the other missionaries.

When the apostles began their journeys we do not know but at the time of Galatians 1:19 only Peter represented the Twelve in Jerusalem. Paul mentions their extended work in 1 Corinthians 9:5, 6 and it seems certain that Peter was in Rome shortly before his death. The troubles caused Paul by the Judaizers at least give evidence of the missionary zeal of the latter. Barnabas and Mark worked after their separation from Paul (Acts 15:39) and GentileChristianity existed in Rome long before the latter's arrival there (Romans 1:13). By the year 100 it appears that Christianity extended around the Mediterranean from Alexandria to Rome (and doubtless farther, although data are scanty), while Asia Minor was especially pervaded by it.

(2) Many factors cooperated to help the work: Peace was universal and communication was easy. Greek was spoken everywhere. The protection given Judaism sheltered from civil interference. The presence of Judaism insured hospitality and hearers for at least the first efforts to convert. The Jews' own proselytizing zeal (Matthew 23:15) had prepared Gentiles to receive Christianity. And not the least element was the break-up of the old religions and the general looking to the East for religious satisfaction.

(3) For the methods, Paul's procedure is probably typical. Avoiding the smaller places, he devoted himself to the cities as the strategic points and traveled in a direct route, without side-journeys. In this way a "line of fire" (Harnack) was traced, and the flame could be trusted to spread of its own accord to each side of the road. So as fruits of Paul's work at Ephesus there appear churches at Colosse and Laodicea some hundred and twenty miles away (Colossians 2:1; Colossians 4:16). The churches founded needed revisiting and confirming, but when the apostle felt that they could shift for themselves, he felt also that his work in the East was over (Romans 15:23).

2. Jerusalem Church:

The members of the earliest Jerusalem church thought of themselves simply as Jews who had a true understanding of the Messiah and so constituting a new "way" or "party" (hardly "sect") in Judaism (Acts 22:4, especially). At first they were suffered to grow unmolested and their right to exist was apparently unquestioned, for the Sadducean actions of Acts 4:1; Acts 5:17 were in the nature of police precautions. And it is significant that the first attack was made on a foreigner, Stephen. He seems to have angered the crowds by preaching the impending destruction of the Temple, although he was martyred for ascribing (practically) Divine honors to Jesus (Acts 7:56). Yet the apostles were not driven from the city (Acts 8:1) and the church was able to continue its development. In 41 A.D., the Roman representatives gave way to the Pharisaically inclined Agrippa I and (for reasons that are not clear) persecution broke out in which James was martyred and Peter delivered only by a miracle (Acts 12). With the resumption of Roman rule in 44 A.D. the persecution ceased.

Some peaceable mode of living was devised, as appears from the absence of further allusions to troubles (compare Acts 21:17-26) and from the accounts of Josephus and Hegesippus of the esteem in which James the Lord's brother was held. His martyrdom (in 62 A.D.?) was due to the tension that preceded the final revolt against Rome, in which the Christians of Jerusalem took no part. Instead, they retired across the Jordan to Pella (Revelation 12:13-17), where they formed a close, intensely Jewish body under the rule of the descendants of Christ's brethren according to the flesh. Some mission work was done farther to the east but in the 2nd century they either were absorbed in normal Christianity or became one of the factors that produced Ebionism.

3. Judaists:

Many members of this body (and, doubtless, other Jewish Christians outside it) showed various degrees of inability to understand the Gentile work. The acceptance of an uncircumcised Christian as "saved" offered fairly slight difficulty (Galatians 2:3 Acts 15). But to eat with him was another thing and one that was an offense to many who accepted his salvation (Galatians 2:12, 13). The rigorous conclusion that the Law bound no Christian was still another thing and one that even James could not accept (Acts 21:21). At the time of Galatians 2:9, the "pillars" were as yet not thinking of doing Gentilework. Paul's controversies are familiar and probably the last friction did not end until the fall of Jerusalem. But the difficulties grew gradually less and 1 Peter is evidence that Peter himself finally accepted the full status of Gentiles.

4. Relations with Rome:

From the Roman power Christianity was safe at first, as the distinctions from Judaism were thought too slight to notice (Acts 18:14-16; Acts 25:19). (Troubles such as those of Acts 17:9 were due to disturbance of the peace.) So the government was thought of as a protector (2 Thessalonians 2:7) and spoken of in the highest terms (Romans 13:1 1 Peter 2:13, 14). But, while absolute isolation was not observed (1 Corinthians 10:27), yet the Christians tended more and more to draw themselves into bodies with little contact with the world around them (1 Peter 4:3-5), so provoking suspicion and hostility from their neighbors. Hence they were a convenient scapegoat for Nero after the burning of Rome. It is uncertain how far his persecution spread or how far persecutions occurred from his time until the end of the reign of Domitian (see PETER, THE FIRST EPISTLE OF), but in Revelation, Rome has become the symbol for all that is hostile to Christ.

5. "Hellenism":

Influence of the "pagan" religions on Christianity is not very perceptible in the 1st century. But syncretism was the fashion of the day and many converts must have attempted to combine the new religion with views that they held already (or that they learned still later). Apparently little attention was paid to this attempt, if restricted to entirely minor details (1 Corinthians 15:29), but in Colossians 2:8-23 a vital matter is touched. The danger is more acute in the Pastorals (1 Timothy 1:4; 1 Timothy 4:3 Titus 3:9) and in Revelation 2 great harm is being done. And Jude, 2 Peter, and 1 John contain direct polemics against the systems so arising, the beginnings of what in the 2nd century appeared as Gnosticism.

For further details see the separate articles, especially MINISTRY; NEW TESTAMENT CANON; and (for life in the Apostolic Age) SPIRITUAL GIFTS.

LITERATURE.

Seethe separate articles. Works with the title Apostolic Age are by Gilbert (brief), Bartlet (useful), Purves (very conservative), Ropes, McGiffert, and Weizsacker. The last three are for critical study.

Burton Scott Easton

APOSTOLIC FATHERS

An appellation usually given to the writers of the 1st century who employed their pens in the cause of Christianity. See SUB-APOSTOLIC LITERATURE.

APOSTOLIC FATHERS, EPISTLES OF

See SUB-APOSTOLIC LITERATURE.

Greek
2583. kanon -- a rule, standard
... This represented the core theological convictions prevailing in the local churches
in the "post-apostolic era" (particularly from ad 100 on). ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/2583.htm - 7k

4752. strateia -- a campaign, expedition, hence warfare
... warfare. From strateuomai; military service, ie (figuratively) the apostolic career
(as one of hardship and danger) -- warfare. see GREEK strateuomai. ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/4752.htm - 6k

Library

Hymns of the Apostolic Church
Hymns of the Apostolic Church. <. Hymns of the Apostolic Church John Brownlie.
Table of Contents. Title Page. INDEX OF FIRST LINES. INTRODUCTION. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/brownlie/hymns of the apostolic church/

The Demonstration of the Apostolic Preaching
The Demonstration of the Apostolic Preaching. <. The Demonstration of the
Apostolic Preaching Irenæus. Table of Contents. Title Page. PREFACE. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/irenaeus/the demonstration of the apostolic preaching/

The Apostolic Fathers
The Apostolic Fathers. <. The Apostolic Fathers Kirsopp Lake. Table
of Contents. Title Page. KLEMENTOS PROS KORINThIOUS A. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/lake/the apostolic fathers/

The Apostolic Witnesses
... THE APOSTOLIC WITNESSES. ... Where in all this is there a trace of the special Apostolic
powers which have been alleged to be transmitted from them? Nowhere. ...
/.../maclaren/expositions of holy scripture the acts/the apostolic witnesses.htm

The Apostolic Scriptures.
... Eighth Chapter. THE APOSTOLATE. XXX. The Apostolic Scriptures. ... By these two things
the apostolic labor is almost exhausted. In St. Paul the two are united. ...
/.../kuyper/the work of the holy spirit/xxx the apostolic scriptures.htm

An Apostolic Testimony and Exhortation
... THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PETER AN APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY AND EXHORTATION. '...
I have written briefly, exhorting, and testifying that this ...
/.../an apostolic testimony and exhortation.htm

Apostolic Inspiration.
... Apostolic Inspiration. ... In their judgment the very effort to identify apostolic
inspiration with the illumination of believers actually annihilates the former. ...
/.../kuyper/the work of the holy spirit/xxxi apostolic inspiration.htm

The Unity of Apostolic Teaching
... V) THE UNITY OF APOSTOLIC TEACHING. ... I. First, then, I ask you to think of the fact
itself"the unbroken unanimity of the whole body of Apostolic teachers. ...
/.../romans corinthians to ii corinthians chap v/the unity of apostolic teaching.htm

The Apostolic Love.
... Second Chapter. LOVE. XXXVI. The Apostolic Love. "He hath blinded their eyes
and hardened their hearts."" John 12:40. It is singular ...
/.../kuyper/the work of the holy spirit/xxxvi the apostolic love.htm

The Women of the Apostolic Age
... PART FIRST. WOMEN OF THE WESTERN EMPIRE II THE WOMEN OF THE APOSTOLIC AGE.
THE leaven of Christianity worked speedily and powerfully ...
/.../brittain/women of early christianity/ii the women of the.htm

Thesaurus
Apostolic (2 Occurrences)
...APOSTOLIC AGE. ... For further details see the separate articles, especially MINISTRY;
NEW TESTAMENT CANON; and (for life in the Apostolic Age) SPIRITUAL GIFTS. ...
/a/apostolic.htm - 17k

Sub-apostolic
Sub-apostolic. Subapostolic, Sub-apostolic. Subas . Int. Standard
Bible Encyclopedia LITERATURE, SUB-APOSTOLIC. lit'-er ...
/s/sub-apostolic.htm - 38k

Fathers (572 Occurrences)
... Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia APOSTOLIC FATHERS. ... See SUB-APOSTOLIC LITERATURE.
APOSTOLIC FATHERS, EPISTLES OF. See SUB-APOSTOLIC LITERATURE. ...
/f/fathers.htm - 39k

Elder (34 Occurrences)
... to such as have the experience and dignity which age confers; as, the elders of
Israel; the elders of the synagogue; the elders in the apostolic church. ...
/e/elder.htm - 27k

Presbyter
... mother-church at Jerusalem, formed after the pattern of the synagogue, might well
have offered to the churches formed elsewhere under apostolic preaching the ...
/p/presbyter.htm - 14k

Charity (29 Occurrences)
... char'-i-ti (agape): 1. A New Word 2. A New Ideal 3. An Apostolic Term 4. Latin
Equivalents 5. English Translation 6. Inward Motive 7. Character 8. Ultimate ...
/c/charity.htm - 23k

Apostolical
... 1. (a.) Pertaining to an apostle, or to the apostles, their times, or their peculiar
spirit; as, an Apostolical mission; the apostolic age. ...
/a/apostolical.htm - 7k

Presbytery (1 Occurrence)
... mother-church at Jerusalem, formed after the pattern of the synagogue, might well
have offered to the churches formed elsewhere under apostolic preaching the ...
/p/presbytery.htm - 14k

Agape
... In opposition to this view it has been strongly urged by some modern critical scholars
that in the apostolic age the Lord's Supper was not distinguished from ...
/a/agape.htm - 15k

Parousia
... Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. PAROUSIA. pa-roo'-zhi-a: I. THE APOSTOLIC DOCTRINE
1. Terms 2. Data and Sources 3. Consistency 4. Meaning of the Symbolism II. ...
/p/parousia.htm - 36k

Concordance
Apostolic (2 Occurrences)

1 Corinthians 4:20
For Apostolic authority is not a thing of words, but of power.
(WEY)

2 Corinthians 10:8
If, however, I were to boast more loudly of our Apostolic authority, which the Lord has given us that we may build you up, not pull you down, I should have no reason to feel ashamed.
(WEY)

Subtopics

Apostolic

Apostolic Age

Apostolic Fathers

Related Terms

Sub-apostolic

Fathers (572 Occurrences)

Elder (34 Occurrences)

Presbyter

Charity (29 Occurrences)

Apostolical

Presbytery (1 Occurrence)

Agape

Parousia

Ministry (44 Occurrences)

Matthew (5 Occurrences)

Apostles'

Creed

Subapostolic

Zealot (4 Occurrences)

Nicolaitans (2 Occurrences)

Widow (71 Occurrences)

Immaculate

Iconium (6 Occurrences)

Catholic

Canaanite (74 Occurrences)

Catechist

Cananaean (2 Occurrences)

Catechumen

Ransom (46 Occurrences)

Theology

General (9 Occurrences)

Conception (6 Occurrences)

Philosophy (1 Occurrence)

Cup (86 Occurrences)

Sabbath (126 Occurrences)

Teaching (372 Occurrences)

Teacher (103 Occurrences)

Timothy (28 Occurrences)

Teach (172 Occurrences)

Nonimmersionist

Non-immersionist

Eucharist

Sermon (1 Occurrence)

Supper (17 Occurrences)

Triune

View (86 Occurrences)

Trine

Immersion

Synoptic

Bishop (4 Occurrences)

Gnosticism

Biblical

Gifts (144 Occurrences)

Borrowing (1 Occurrence)

Spiritual (42 Occurrences)

Age (404 Occurrences)

Church (110 Occurrences)

Christian (41 Occurrences)

Flame (61 Occurrences)

Offices (14 Occurrences)

Galatians (2 Occurrences)

Philemon (2 Occurrences)

Pastoral

Son (25967 Occurrences)

Lord's (548 Occurrences)

Canon

I-iii

Sacraments

Introduction (3 Occurrences)

King (25505 Occurrences)

Philippi (8 Occurrences)

Pharisees (86 Occurrences)

Agrapha

Second (2060 Occurrences)

Justification (6 Occurrences)

James (40 Occurrences)

Gift (148 Occurrences)

Virgin (62 Occurrences)

Worship (332 Occurrences)

Birth (357 Occurrences)

Apocryphal

Magus

Heaven (653 Occurrences)

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