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Apostles' Doctrine

The apostles’ doctrine is the gospel that the apostles preach. They are sent to the churches to build upon the teachings of Jesus Christ to help them walk in His Spirit. (If you haven’t read the teaching on the principle doctrine of Christ, you can check that out on the classroom page.) These doctrines of the apostles are the teachings that will help you establish your everyday life in Christ. Let’s face it, the biggest obstacle in serving God in the world is yourself. These teachings give you the power and ability to walk faithfully in this world as an established member of the body of Christ, which is to say you will be an established church.

 

The apostle Paul knew the power and effectiveness of doctrine and lived his life as a father and teacher to the churches he started and other ones he had a part in. His words to the church in Corinth stated his firm position in the proper teachings to these churches. 1 Corinthians 3:9–11

 

9 For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God given to me, like a wise master builder, I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take heed how he builds upon it. 11 For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

 

Paul was a genuine believer and follower of Jesus Christ and was ready to protect his gospel in Christ at all cost. He established his churches in the teachings of Jesus. Anything built outside that narrow path was not allowed to enter the church. He knew that to develop and establish lives in the kingdom of Christ; he could not be general in his speech. He knew what worked and what didn’t; therefore, his teachings were focused, direct and clear. He followed the mindset of Jesus closely and believed that walking on a narrow path would get you to heaven. (Referencing Matthew 7:13-14, where Jesus taught that the way to eternal life is narrow, while destruction is at the end of a broader well-traveled path.) Considering the excessive amount of teachings in our world today, we need a narrowly focused way to walk in if we are going to overcome the many voices in the world. 

 

Paul’s emphasis to all of this seriousness is that we need one gospel with teachings that unite those far from God and those near—referencing the Jews and Gentiles, which are those who grew up under God’s instruction and those who didn’t. To do this, you must be given the blueprint of the kingdom of heaven. This blueprint will guide the entire structure of uniting the whole kingdom. Every temple constructed should be built with the same guidelines in mind. (The temple is the body, both you and I.) These guidelines are the doctrines that come from heavenly-minded apostles and prophets. They are the visionaries and voices of God’s one gospel, and God sends them to lay the foundation for the saints to live by and walk in. Ephesians 2:17–22

 

17 And (Jesus) came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18 For through Him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In Him, you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.

 

Paul’s teaching reveals that your building is built upon the foundation of the apostle and prophet, with Jesus Christ being the chief cornerstone. Referencing the principle doctrine of Christ is the cornerstone of the apostle’s doctrine. The apostles and prophets embody Christ on the earth after Jesus ascended into heaven. Their doctrine is not only teaching you to apply the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus to your life, but it’s also the masteries of applying the nature of Jesus Christ to your life. These teachings, which are founded on the doctrine of Christ, will be the house that God builds you so that He can abide with you forever.

 

When the apostles were sent by Jesus and commanded to go into all the world and preach the gospel, they went forth and taught many different diversities of truth. They were always bearing witness to the testimony they received from the Lord in the Spirit. While there were many things to command, exhort, reprove, and teach the people, the apostles’ doctrine always came back to a few simple principles that guided the churches.

 

When it came time to translate, on the earth, what they had heard in the Spirit, they did not commonly speak of all their dreams and visions in every matter. Although I’m am convinced that to reach the level of the Spirit that they walked in, they had to experience many visitations of the Spirit. But when they wrote to the churches, they wrote from those experiences and expressed themselves through the nature of Christ rather than always having to tell everything they saw in the Spirit. They taught people how to live their lives based on the nature of Christ and not just telling things that would puff themselves up to others. The teachings that came forth from these experiences with God became what is known as the apostles’ doctrine. 

 

These experiences are what made their doctrine so powerful. They had very specific spiritual principles that they lived by, and they taught those principles to the people. These teachings were the words that they learned in the Spirit. It created the divine nature in them, and they began to build the church of God. These men were examples of a mind change, a life change that became part of their consciousness, and these are the principles they built the church on.

 

The apostles’ doctrine is the church’s foundation after believing and receiving Christ. If an Apostle is present, these teachings will be present in the church he built. Although there are a lot of truths that the apostles’ taught, you can see all their teachings in a few subjects. Again, Paul was a skilled master builder. He knew that a strong foundation was the key to a strong church; therefore, continuing in these principles is essential.

 

The Apostles’ Doctrine

 

Here are a few key teachings of the apostles. Even though the apostles used these as separate teachings at times, they are one doctrine that represents a new man walking in the works of God. It’s like looking at one tree with lots of fruit or many teachings in one doctrine. You can walk in the Spirit with great freedom and a strong purpose before you by these teachings. There will be more teaching to this doctrine than listed here, but this is a good start.

 

  1. Jesus is the Messiah that was prophesied to come.

  2. The Resurrection of Jesus. (Jesus died and rose again).

  3. Jesus is the only way to God.

  4. Grace is without your work.

  5. Faith with works.

  6. Salvation is to all nations, Jews and Gentiles.

  7. The day of the Lord and the second coming.

 

Let’s review each one listed.

 

1. Jesus is the Messiah that was prophesied to come.

 

The whole gospel is founded on the truth that Jesus is the Messiah. He is the one that was prophesied by the prophets of old. God manifested Jesus in the earth, putting Him in a body so that all men everywhere could see with their eyes the fulfillment of these remarkable prophecies. This teaching is the greatest revelation of all the doctrines and is the center of the apostles’ teachings. Everything they do is built around this central truth. It is the one teaching that holds everything together. Jesus is the fulness of every prophecy and promise that was ever spoken. Every faithful man and woman in the Bible is a part of who He is. When you put them and their words altogether, you see Jesus. 

 

If God didn’t send His Son into the world and manifest Him as a man, His story would not be true. The prophets would be liars, and there would be no hope for any of us. But God didn’t lie, the prophets spoke the truth by the Spirit, and God honored His word and gave us Jesus. God did what His prophets said He would do, and the apostles showed everyone that these prophesies were fulfilled in Jesus.

 

Where did the apostles learn that Jesus was the Messiah? It was Jesus that taught them. The whole time He was with them in the flesh, He manifested the works of the prophesied Messiah. One by one, He fulfilled the prophecies that were promised to come. After His resurrection, He appeared several times and showed His disciples that He was prophesied throughout all the writings of the Old Testament. One example is when two disciples walked with Him after His resurrection and questioned the events of His death. Jesus had this to say to them. Luke 24:25–27.

 

25 And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into His glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded (interpreted) to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.

 

In His appearing, He continually revealed Himself to them by connecting the prophets of old to what was happening in the present-day resurrection. He also appeared to His apostles and taught them the same. Luke 24:44-45. 

 

44 Then He said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.

 

Jesus is the Son of God, fulfilling all God’s promises. He is the offspring of prophecy and the proof that God will not forsake His people on the earth, nor the covenants He made with them. That’s the message that the apostles preached, and that’s the power of their doctrine. 

 

Here are a few examples in the scriptures. 

 

The prophets prophesied of the coming of a messiah born of a virgin and would be the savior and ruler of Israel. Micah 5:2; Isaiah 7:14-15; Daniel 9:25-26

 

In the New Testament, witnesses confirmed that Christ was born and that this Jesus is the one who the prophets said would come. The apostles were always in conflict and persecuted because they preached that this Jesus was the Son of God, and many in Israel did not believe them. Luke 2:8-14, 25-32, 36-38; Matthew 2:5-6; Acts 10:42; 17:3; 18:5.

 

Note: when the Bible says that they preached Jesus Christ, it is saying they preached that Jesus is the Christ. Acts 5:42 (Christ was not His last name, but Who He is!). 

 

 

2. The Resurrection of Jesus. (Jesus died and rose again).

 

The resurrection of Jesus was another primary teaching that the apostles taught everywhere they went. If Jesus is indeed the Messiah, He would have to be crucified to death and be raised by God for this to be true. The resurrection is what gives life to the prophecies of old. If there is no resurrection, then the manifested Messiah would be what many have said He was, just another prophet to the people of God. His resurrection is what made Him superior to others before Him. He is alive, ruling the kingdom of God.

 

Jesus is the resurrection, the life-giver that raises you from the dead. This death came upon you through the death of the first man Adam. 1 Corinthians 15:20–22

 

20 But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For as by a man (Adam) came death, by a man (Jesus) has come also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.

 

The power of this teaching is that no one has to remain in the death of the first Adam. Jesus is Alive! We can now be partakers with Him in His resurrection and be changed from an earthly person to one like God’s angels. Both in mind and body. You can read more on this in the  “Principle Doctrine of Christ”  listed in the classroom.

 

The real secret to this doctrine is your testimony. What makes a good testimony is that you are a true witness of what you are testifying. An apostle is an authentic witness to the resurrection of Jesus, and they made it no secret that they saw the Lord first hand after His resurrection from the dead. Acts 4:32–33

 

32 Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. 33 And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.

 

Jesus told them this would happen when He appeared to them after His resurrection. Acts 1:8.

 

8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.

 

It’s the resurrection that seals the deal on who is God and who is not. Only one ever went to death and overcame it by rising from its grave. The fact that Jesus did it, and was the firstborn of many brothers, is the basis of this doctrine. All people everywhere can now have access to eternal salvation because Jesus rose from corruption and became incorruptible. This doctrine is significant in the established church. Every church that walks in the newness of life is full of witnesses who testify that Jesus is alive. (And He is alive for us.)

 

The resurrection is what allows all of God’s children to access heaven. The fact that Jesus ascended to heaven and sat on the right hand of the Father, with all power over heaven and earth, allows the gospel of the apostles to be full of hope for all men and women to overcome this world and attain eternal life. This resurrection was the basis of all their teachings. If there had been no resurrection, their faith would be in vain, and the apostles’ gospel would not exist. 1 Corinthians 15. 

 

You will find that the apostle Paul taught this doctrine in every church, knowing the impact that it would have on the souls of all who heard it. Romans 6:4; 10:9; Colossians 2:12.

 

 

3. Jesus is the only way to God

 

This doctrine is interesting in that it defines the one way to heaven. I know there are many beliefs in the world, and many would say that it is tricky to put all your eggs in one basket. But the apostles didn’t hesitate to go all-in on one God, one faith, one Jesus who is the one way to God. They testified and established that all salvation runs through Jesus Christ, and there is no other way to heaven. Acts 4: 11-12.

 

11 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. 12 There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

 

This teaching draws from the words of Jesus. John 14:6

 

6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

 

Jesus was God’s choice to bring salvation to sinful man, and He willingly gave Himself to the sinful nature of flesh so that He could redeem all men from the curse of death. Another key to this teaching is that no other man or woman has been willing to give their life for all. He didn’t just do it like a man; He did it as a God. He left heaven to perform this great work. Who else can say that? Jesus is the only one worthy of such glory. He alone provided the way out of the bondage of sin and death. That’s why His name is the only name in heaven and earth whereby we must be saved. Acts 4:12

 

This makes perfect sense when you count that Jesus was the only one to overcome the death of the flesh. If you are going to escape flesh and blood, it will be through Jesus that you accomplish it. 

 

When this teaching is established in the church, it focuses everyone on the same idea. If Jesus is the only way to God, I will put all my time and effort into knowing Him and being changed into His same image. This teaching is what keeps the church in unity with the same gospel. You go the same way and think the same things. All doctrine and gifts focus on Jesus. The unity of the Spirit joins every member of the body together in Him. This is the gathering that Paul talked about in Ephesians 1:3–12, which is the mystery of God’s will.

 

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our sins, according to the riches of his grace, 8 which he abounded upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. 11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.

 

You can see the actual effect that oneness has on a church when everyone believes that Jesus is the only way. This doctrine of the apostles will unify every member of your body so that every thought you have in it will be one in Christ Jesus.

 

 

4. Grace without work.

 

When it comes to overcoming your sin and establishing your church, grace will help you accomplish it without all the frustration from the weaknesses that work in your flesh. The gift of grace separates the apostles’ doctrine from all other believers when doing works. Grace is referred to as the favor of the Lord that puts you in good standing when you are before Him. The important part of grace is that it is a gift; therefore, it relies on the Lord to help you accomplish good works on His behalf. When the favor of God is on your life, you know that God will overlook the weakness in you and see the gift of God. That is where grace excels; it is perfected when weakness is present. That’s why it’s a gift from God and not something you work for. When you do not have the strength to do the works of God because the flesh is weak, it’s by grace that Jesus does the work for you.

 

Grace is necessary for a church to grow and be established. If you live for God, you will need this doctrine in your life to have peace while working towards perfection. That’s because as you grow in the Spirit you learn much about how evil your heart is, and having that knowledge is hard to take sometimes. When learning about your sin against God, you need the grace to help you get through it. This is so that you don’t revert to the works of the law by the flesh to try and overcome sin. Many counterparts of the apostles believed that the law of Moses was the answer to righteousness, and was the grace that was needed as a believer. The law of Moses, in many believer’s minds, gave them the ability they needed to please God because they could use it to perfect the flesh through works. The apostles, however, preached that grace is a gift and required no works to be saved. Ephesians 2:8–10.

 

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

 

The apostles knew that the law manifested the failure of the flesh and revealed its sin. That’s why grace was so comforting to those who received it. Grace removes the pressure of performing works in the flesh by the law. The Spirit in you can now do it through faith in the works that Jesus Christ did. The apostle Paul taught his experience of grace to the church in Galatians 2:20–21.

 

20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not frustrate the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

 

The teaching of grace makes striving in the flesh very frustrating for those who depend on works for salvation. Grace goes against the works of the flesh and allows you to serve God in the freedom of not focusing on the flesh. The gift of God becomes the focus, even though sin and weakness are still present in you. The works of the flesh, through the law, focus on what you do in the flesh to erase your sin, but grace covers your sin until the Lord is ready to manifest it and deal with it. The law nags at you with condemnation by causing you to remember your sin. Grace allows you to look past your sin and trust God. It doesn’t excuse sin but covers it until it’s dealt with. 

 

That’s not to say that sin is allowed; it just means that while you are growing up in the Spirit to live free from sin, grace is applied to your life until your sin has been revealed, discerned, and forsaken. While being a child, you do not always know what to repent from. Grace helps you walk in the covering of Christ until you are ready to address your disobedience with the right intent and understanding of what it is you are repenting from. Even though you repented of your sins in the beginning, you will be addressing hidden sins of the flesh as you continue to seek the Lord. This is where grace works its best.

 

As mentioned above, grace has always been said to be the favor of God. I agree that it is, but favor for what? If God’s favor falls upon you then He cares more about saving you than He does condemning you for your sin. That is God’s favor; when He looks upon your weakness and says I can look past it for the sake of fulfilling the will of God. He favors His word in you, and He means to be patient as He guides you through your progression of growing up. That’s true grace, and you don’t want to frustrate the grace of God by focusing on your sin above the work that He is doing in your life. That is why this doctrine is so needed in the church. It helps the church as it grows up in the Spirit.

 

Grace says I see your weakness, but I can cover you until my will is fulfilled. The works of the flesh, on the other hand, frustrate the grace of God in you. Romans 11:6; 2 Timothy 1:9

 

Note: We find another element of this grace found in Paul’s experience with the messenger of Satan, but I will address that at another time. 

 

 

5. Faith with works.

 

Works are necessary for the will of God to be fulfilled on the earth. Thanks to faith, our works can now please the Lord. Everything is built on faith. It is your word from God, which means that when you have His word, everything you do is through faith. Where grace is a gift that saves you without your works being involved, faith allows you to excel in your works. (I call them your works because if you are doing them by faith, God is working in you to perform the work. Joining yourself to Him in oneness makes it your job to complete.) 

 

Abraham was a good example of being justified by faith with works and was made righteous. He simply did what God told him to do. That’s the strength of this doctrine. The apostles knew that your faith with works will turn the world upside down when you hear from God and act on it. That’s why the apostles remembered Abraham and wrote about him. They were joined to him by the Spirit, and he walked in them by a promise through faith.

 

A church that has faith with works is an active church. It’s a church that is alive and moving by the Spirit. If you were to look at the church the same way you looked at the body, which has many members, you would see a church with many saints. A congregation of the living, who is doing the deeds of Jesus Christ. Imagine each saint doing the works of God according to their abilities. Now we’re talking about Hebrews 11. In this chapter, the saints of God rose up and, by faith, did what the Lord told them to do, and it worked. These are the great cloud of witnesses who acted on the word of God that they received and proved each one to be true. They were able to be obedient because of their faith. That’s why they are witnesses for us. They speak to us through the apostles and teach us how to walk by faith with works.

 

The apostles used examples from men and women of faith throughout their teachings to show us examples of faith with works. These are the true believers who act on their beliefs. That’s why this teaching is such a big part of the apostles’ doctrine. It’s a doctrine of action, of hearing and doing.

 

In Hebrews 11:1, faith is defined for us in two sentences. 

 

1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

 

  1. Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, 

  2. the evidence of things not seen.

 

These two things are everything you need to know about faith. First there’s a part of faith that is in hope, which is the substance of things hoped for. Meaning it’s just a spoken word right now, and you haven’t put work into it yet. Secondly, the other part of faith is seen, and you are working it, which is the evidence of things that were not seen yet. Meaning when you put work into it, then you have proof, which is evidence of the word of God that you received. All that means is if it’s not seen, it’s in a hope, but you have evidence of it when it’s seen. You can see more details of this teaching in “ The Two Parts of Faith .”

 

Hebrews 11:1 illustrates the power of faith with works. The apostles were doers of God and taught their churches to be the same. Without this doctrine in your church, you will struggle to accomplish anything in God.

 

 

6. Salvation is to all nations, Jews and Gentiles.

 

Salvation to all nations is the one doctrine in this document that is difficult to present in short without setting up a better backdrop. At some point, you will need to understand who the Jews are and where they came from, as well as the Gentiles. I will sort it out briefly, but I will trust that if you are here reading this, you have somewhat of a knowledge of these two groups of people. I will speak more on this subject in detail in the future.

 

The simplicity of this doctrine is that there are two groups of people in the story of God. You can summarize the Bible by using these two groups to represent humanity. First, you have the Jews, who at times were called Hebrews. These people were the children of God who were the offspring of Abraham born after the promise of God. They became the great nation of Israel, referred to as the children of Israel, the son of God. Secondly, you have the Gentiles, who consisted of all other people who were not Jews. In God’s story, the Jews were His people, the people of God, while the Gentiles served other gods and did not follow the name of Yahweh. Through much war and conflict, these two groups were divided on the earth. It’s a true battle of Spirit versus flesh. 

 

The power of this doctrine works in that it breaks down the dividing wall between flesh and Spirit and unites them by a common thought; salvation is to all who believe, both Jew and Gentile. You can only do this work through the teaching of Jesus Christ. This doctrine hinges on every other teaching mentioned above. No matter what race or culture you are born in on the earth, this gospel unites everyone as one body by faith in Jesus Christ. In the Old Testament, God used commandments to teach people how to walk in the Spirit. It taught us that the law, when only done by works, will fail because of the weakness of the flesh. In the New Testament, Jesus was manifested, and we learn that there is a better way to serve God and walk in the Spirit. It’s by grace and truth through Jesus Christ. Through Jesus, we can accomplish the whole law.

 

The Jews would have to be faithful to God to walk in the Spirit for this to work correctly. Just like the Gentiles are always faithful to walk by the flesh. To walk in the Spirit is the whole point of Jesus Christ in your life. The Jews were supposed to reflect that in the earth. Instead, they got caught up in the works of the flesh and refused to see Jesus as the Son of God born after the Spirit. The Jews on the earth fell short of walking in the Spirit and relied on the law of God that helped them produce works of the flesh to serve Him. This thinking was a problem for God because He desired them to walk in the Spirit and not use the law to do works in the flesh. After their rebellion against God, He looked to the Gentiles to save them from sin. This rebellion was His opportunity to teach the gospel to a group of people that were not constrained only to serve the law. 

 

The apostles allowed the Gentiles to hear the gospel, changing everything. The apostles preached this gospel to the Gentiles, Paul being the apostle of the Gentiles, and it made the Jews extremely jealous. But if the Jews can see God’s mercy to the Gentiles, it will cause them to return to God and walk in the Spirit as they are supposed to do. In the end, both the Jews and the Gentiles will be saved. They will represent the unity of both the Spirit and the flesh, walking as one body in heaven and earth. But there is much war and conflict on the earth between the two mindsets until that work is finished. The apostles receive the brunt of that conflict.

 

With the future at stake, God said I will end this war between the Jews and the Gentiles, and I will gather them together and join them as one body. Both the Spirit and the flesh will serve the Lord in truth. What a mystery that we have in this doctrine. In the parable, we see two groups of people, Jews, and Gentiles. Neither group is entirely faithful to God on the earth, so there is much to explain there. But to keep it simple, in the kingdom, the Jew is the true example of the Son of God who the Spirit leads. The Gentile is an example of the disobedient child who walks according to the flesh and the spirits of the world.

 

After the failure of the Jews to walk in the new covenant of Jesus, God let us see what a faithful Jew would look like when walking in the Spirit. Our first example, of course, was Jesus, but our second example is the apostles. They preach the salvation of all people through Jesus Christ. They walked in the Spirit and served God with their hearts, bodies, souls, and spirits. They represented the unity of both people and said that it is possible to walk in the flesh while living in the Spirit. What a gospel they preached. We will also preach this gospel and unite the church of the living God.

 

So how do you take this principle and make it work on the earth among men and women, who are Jews and Gentiles in the flesh? The answer is you erase the focus of flesh and make it about the Spirit. The true Jew is born of God free from the flesh. Erasing the perception through the flesh is how God joins the two together. He saves the Gentile and unites him with the Jew, and they become one body. If you read Galatians 3-4, you can see this.

 

As stated before, this doctrine goes very deep in details, but where it hits home the most is in Paul’s teachings concerning the true Jew and who he is. He taught that a Jew is one inwardly of the heart and not one outwardly of the flesh. Romans 2:28–29. 

 

28 For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward in the flesh. 29 But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God.

 

This teaching is a game-changer in understanding the church’s unity and the one body of Christ. No wonder this doctrine is so important to God. It means that God is not looking at the flesh at all, at least as we might see it. No matter where you were born in the world or what seed line you possess in your blood, salvation is to the believer. It is to the inward man, not the outward. While the inheritance of spiritual blessings belongs to the Jews, God said it is a matter of the heart and not the flesh. All those who receive Jesus become a spiritual Jew and partake in the inheritance of the Spirit. That’s why Paul said that if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise. Galatians 3:29.

 

For this teaching to work on the earth, it has to be handled by spiritual people. If you are not spiritual, you will continue to judge after the flesh. The Jews (Israel), who were of the flesh, hated this doctrine and sought to kill the apostles for teaching it. Before Jesus, the Jews lived by the law of God, and the Gentiles did not, so the Jews thought they were more deserving than the Gentiles because they boasted of their works in keeping the commandments. When the Gentiles received Christ, it was by grace through faith, not of their works. So coming to God was easy compared to going through the works of the law. As God saved the Gentiles through the gift of grace, the Jews became very jealous and warred against the apostles who accepted the Gentiles. 

 

This war among men was an example of how flesh wars against the Spirit. But the power of this teaching is that God will accept all who will believe in Jesus Christ who come unto Him. Not everyone in the world has the same opportunities in the flesh, and I’m confident that no matter how hard people work to resolve this problem, we can only solve it if the will of God is revealed in each of us. If we live by the Spirit of God, we will all be accepted in one body and one mind. All the hard work of the flesh will never solve this problem because Jesus is the unifier between everyone and everything. But if we all live for Jesus, we will all be one family.

 

 

7. The day of the Lord and the second coming.

 

The prophets of old often spoke of a Messiah who would be manifested in a first coming. They said He would take on the sin of the flesh and deliver the world through the death of sin and resurrection of eternal life. This is the good news we often speak about. But in the established church, which has received Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins, we are building on further truth. We are establishing the apostles’ doctrine of what comes after for the faithful and the unfaithful. The expectation of the saints is now found in what the prophets said about the Lord’s day and the second coming of Jesus. The apostles doubled down with great expectation of the Lord’s coming and taught it as a hope for the saints of God and destruction for the wicked. Hebrews 9:24–28.

 

27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.

 

For those looking for Him, He will return the second time in great victory, much different from the first time He came as a servant to death. There has always been much persecution in the church from those who are of the world. The world hates Jesus and refuses to acknowledge their need for Him as their savior. This spirit is antichrist and will continue to resist and oppose the true Christ until the day of the Lord comes and removes his authority in the world.

 

The apostles often spoke of the day of the Lord because it’s a dreadful day for the wicked and a glorious day for the saints. Paul especially spoke of it several times to the church of Thessalonica in his letters to them because they suffered with Him for the gospel’s sake. The message is that Christ will be glorified in His saints, but He will repay those who afflicted them with many afflictions. 2 Thessalonians 1:5–12.

 

5 This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering— 6 since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, 7 and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels 8 in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His might, 10 when He comes on that day to be glorified in His saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed. 11 To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of His calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by His power, 12 so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

The day of the Lord and the second coming coincide with each other. This day and the Lords appearing will happen after the falling away. This falling away gives rise to the man of sin to sit in authority within people and wreak havoc on the saints of God. While there is a lot of debate among scholars about timing and the order of events concerning the end times, we today must not get caught up in these needless conflicts. The apostles were sure of their preaching concerning these events because they knew that this doctrine is a spiritual experience that each one needs to experience for themselves—every man in his own order.

 

The simple truth is that all of the experiences on the earth are for the glory of God. When you look at the pattern of the Old Testament you see the day of the Lord and the coming of the Lord many times. These are examples of what’s to come. Prophecy has always worked this way, and you must consider that in the Spirit you will see what was, what is, and what is to come. In your experience with God, you can see that it has happened, yet it is still to come. 

 

As a saint of God, you will experience lots of suffering and persecution in the name of Jesus. It may appear that the wicked one will win out in the end, but there is a day where the Lord will appear, and great judgment will be upon the world and those who are its friends. We, the saints of God, must look for that day with the hope of a greater resurrection. All this is in preparation for a new heaven and a new earth where you will dwell with God and reign with Christ forever and ever. (Look for more details to come on this doctrine.)

 

Conclusion

 

There are many more things to say about the apostles’ doctrine, and if God allows, I will address many of them as I continue to write. In short, the apostles’ doctrine is a combination of the life of Jesus Christ. It is the secret of how He thinks and acts. It’s His life divided up into different parts to reveal to all of us who He is and how He reigns in heaven and on the earth. The apostles work to establish these teachings on the earth so that we all know how to become Christ-like and walk in the same Spirit as He did.

 

The best way to learn these doctrines is to let a genuine apostle of God begin to teach you by the Spirit that He has received. We find this example in Acts 2:42-44.

 

42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common…

 

If we continue in fellowship with the teachings of the apostles, we will be saved from the spirit of antichrist and will overcome the works of the flesh. We will walk in the Spirit every day. Our church will be alive and full of the testimonies of Jesus Christ. 

 

 

Other subjects we will talk about later.

 

We shall not all sleep

The husband and the wife

Unity of the body

Gifts of the Spirit

Suffering

The law

One God

New man

Two minds, two bodies

Proving, testing

Wisdom and understanding

Mysteries of God

The church

Government

Fornication, adultery

Marriage

Idolatry

Food offered to idols

Communion

Doctrines

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