The Claims of the Pope – Part 5 – Apostolic Succession

Finally, I want to hit the issue of the Catholic church’s claim of apostolic succession.

The Bible says that it is Christ Jesus who gives us gifts of ministry. “But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it… It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers” (Ephesians 4:7, 11).

Apostleship is one of the gifts that Christ has gives to some. Notice, it is Christ who gives the gift of apostleship, just like all the other gifts (see also Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12). The gifts may indeed be passed on by the laying on of hands (e.g. 2 Timothy 1:6). However, it has always been Christ who decides who receives which gifts, and it is he who ultimately empowers to receive them, not man.

To say that only certain people have authority, (i.e. the pope), because of a certain succession is not biblical. The same is true of the claim that only certain people may receive certain gifts.

Therefore, Catholic bishops are not the only people who are permitted by Christ to receive the gift of apostleship.

Part 1 – Introduction
Part 2 – The Priesthood
Part 3 – The Eucharist
Part 4 – Saved By the Eucharist? Saved by Works?
Part 6 – In Conclusion

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