Αποστολοι και Προφητες

01 Nov

Apostles and Prophets.

The phrase “apostles and prophets” seems to be unique to Christianity (at least at first glance, I haven’t had a chance to read other Intertestamental works yet). Probably because Christianity first and foremost is an evangelistic religion (as opposed to Judaism). And the obsession with “prophets” is due to the link with Judaism. Anyway, I did a quick search using and here are the few places where the phrase “apostles and prophets” is used in the canonical NT:

Luke 11:49

Because of this, God in his wisdom said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and others they will persecute.

1 Corinthians 12:28

And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues.

1 Corinthians 12:29

Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles?

Ephesians 2:20

built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.

Ephesians 3:5

which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets.

Ephesians 4:11

It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists (ευαγγελιστας), and some to be pastors and teachers,

2 Peter 3:2

I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles.

Revelation 18:20

Rejoice over her, O heaven! Rejoice, saints and apostles and prophets! God has judged her for the way she treated you.

I was thinking that because Luke is the only gospel to use “apostles and prophets” that it had some connection with Paul. However, Paul is unique in that he always lists “apostles” before “prophets” so this might mean that Luke is ony emulating Pauline language. This also might mean that Ephesians is an authentic Pauline epistle since it uses the same type of language in the same order. However on the other hand, it uses ευαγγελιστας (good news-ists) which is a word that the authentic seven never uses.

I’ll have to do a bit further reading in other Christian and 2nd temple Judaism literature to see if there’s a larger pattern.


Posted by on November 1, 2010 in early Christianity, paul


2 responses to “Αποστολοι και Προφητες

  1. Rich Griese

    November 1, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    See Stephan Huller's blog he talks a great deal about that kind thing.

    Cheers! RichGriese.NET

  2. J. Quinton

    November 2, 2010 at 10:58 pm

    Thanks! His blog looks interesting!

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