APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION The Legacy of The Ancient Faith Universal Church: The uninterrupted spiritual authority imparted Read More ...
One of Jesus Christ’s disciples: any of the 12 followers of Jesus Christ chosen by him to preach the news about Christianity
Each of the twelve original chief disciples of Jesus Christ, later called The Holy Apostles.
• Any important early Christian Teacher, especially St. Paul.
• The first successful Christian Missionaryin a country or to a people
• A vigorous and Pioneering Advocate or supporter of a particular policy, idea, or cause:
The Legacy of The Ancient Faith Universal Church:
While many of the more ancient Churches within the historical episcopate state that Holy Orders are valid only through apostolic succession, most of the various Protestant denominations would deny the need of maintaining episcopal continuity with the early Church.
They generally hold that one important qualification of the Apostles was that they were chosen directly by Jesus and that they witnessed the resurrected Christ.
According to this understanding, the work of the twelve (and the Apostle Paul), together with the prophets of the twelve tribes of Israel, provide the doctrinal foundation for the whole church of subsequent history through the Scriptures of the Bible.
To share with the apostles the same faith, to believe their word as found in the Scriptures, to receive the same Holy Spirit, is to them the only meaningful “continuity” with what they believe the early Christians to have believed, because it is in this sense only that men have fellowship with God in the truth (an extension of the new Reformation-era doctrines of sola fide and sola scriptura).
The most meaningful apostolic succession for most Protestants, then, is a kind of “faithful succession” of apostolic teaching.