first apostles

1 Corinthians 12:28

12:28 first apostles. The gift of apostleship obviously lasted only as long as the last of the apostles (evidently John) was living. One of its prerequisites was that of seeing the resurrected Christ in person (see note on I Corinthians 9:1). The idea of an apostolic succession in later centuries is without Biblical support, but the missionary in some measure is similar in function. The gift of prophecy was also to cease (I Corinthians 13:8) after it was no longer needed, probably when the New Testament was completed and accepted by the church.

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