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Who Are the Apostles: Who were the apostles, where did they come from, where did they go? Who were the Jewish apostles? What change did Jesus make in ... Church: Missionary Church) (Volume 1) Paperback – January 26, 2016
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Following the trail put forward in his first book on the missionary focus of the early church (Apostolic Church: One, Holy, Catholic and Missionary), Dr. Scudieri strengthens his argument that “apostolic” had as much to do with the outreach of those who were sent as to the articulation and preservation of the faith for which the early church is often better known. These apostles, including the Twelve themselves, went forth as shelichim of the Jewish tradition, carrying the authority of our Lord as their sender. But unlike the Jewish tradition, these “sent ones” were sent outside the community to represent the Lord of salvation to the ends of the earth, not just to Jews but also to Gentiles, to be witnesses and to make disciples of all nations. The church today, including Dr. Scudieri’s own Lutheran tradition, would do well to recapture this urgent and sacrificial missionary spirit of the 1st century now in the global context of the 21st century, with the vision of the apostle John in Rev 7:9, including and encompassing those of every nation and tribe, people and tongue! An important read for today's mission conversation.
From the Author
This book, WHO ARE THE APOSTLES, is a project more than twenty years in the making. It began as a project I eagerly took on as a Research Fellow at Yale Divinity School in 1991. Boy, that seems like eons ago! The first book to come out of that time away from home (four months living away from an incredibly patient spouse) was the book APOSTOLIC CHURCH: One, holy, catholic and missionary. I had always wanted to come back to expand that book. When I retired from my call as the head of national missions for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, I saw my chance. I do have to say that the Lord laid the groundwork. Let me explain.
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If those were the only questions answered, this book would still be an interesting read. However, the most important question answered and the one that provides significance for Jesus followers today is this one: What does this mean for the mission of the church today? It is the answer to that question that makes this book important for modern-day Christians.
Spoiler alert! Unless believers in Jesus see themselves as “built on the foundation of the apostles,” that is missionaries of the Gospel, then we will have little urgency in reaching the billions in the world who do not yet know Jesus as Lord and Savior. But, if we take this book seriously and truly understand ourselves to be missionaries built on this apostolic foundation, then perhaps we can still be shaken out of our complacency and used powerfully by God today!