Does this prove Apostolic Succession?


John 20:21-23 = Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

James 5:14-15= Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.

They are receiving the same Authority as the Apostles...

Matthew 16:18= And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.

Matthew 18:15-17= 'If your brother does something wrong, go and have it out with him alone, between your two selves. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother. If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you: whatever the misdemeanour, the evidence of two or three witnesses is required to sustain the charge. But if he refuses to listen to these, report it to the CHURCH; and if he refuses to listen to the CHURCH, treat him like a gentile or a tax collector.

Jesus is founding ONE CHURCH that will never be inerrant. How can this be when we have one church that says baptizing infants is wrong, and another that practices this? How can this be when one church does not endorse homosexual practices while another ordains non celibate gay clergy?

Can you guys give me some more in depth ways to look at this?


Also look into the early church fathers. For example Pope Clement, the third successor from Peter, wrote a letter to the Corinthians in the first century or early second century to the church in Corinth. This letter was very authoritative in tone and indicates that the power of the Church is in Rome and therefore continued after Peter.

If dealing with Protestants this approach might not work due to sola scriptura. But always worth a try. Look for sources outside of just scripture; there are many.

Hebrews 7:11-12 also speaks of the establishment of a New Priesthood in Jesus. Certainly a new Priesthood does not only stay with apostles and then die out. There would be no purpose to it to establish it. Christ would have simply just given them the authority until they died and would have indicated so, but He did not.


Whether you want to use the term "proof" or not, those passages are evidence for Apostolic Succession. Two other good quips I'd mention are these:

This one from Timothy demonstrates 4 generations of succession, from Paul, to Timothy, to Timothy's successors, and to the generation after that:2 Tim. 2:2: And what you have heard from me before many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.You also have Clement's letter to the Corinthians, a 1st Century document (Clement is believed in tradition to have taught with Paul personally)The apostles have preached the Gospel to us from the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ [has done sol from God. Christ therefore was sent forth by God, and the apostles by Christ. Both these appointments, then, were made in an orderly way, according to the will of God. Having therefore received their orders, and being fully assured by the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and established in the word of God, with full assurance of the Holy Ghost, they went forth proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand. And thus preaching through countries and cities, **they appointed the first-fruits [of their labours], having first proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops and deacons of those who should afterwards believe. Nor was this any new thing, since indeed many ages before it was written concerning bishops and deacons. For thus saith the Scripture a certain place, "I will appoint their bishops s in righteousness, and their deacons in faith." (Clement, Letter to the Corinthians, #42, ca 70-90 AD)See also scripturecatholic's page on Apostolic Succession for more evidence, examples of ordination in Scripture, etc...

One thing also to remember, is the principle of typology. As in the Old Testament, there was a succession of priests, i.e. the ordained ministers, through the sons of Levi. This corresponds to the succession of priests in the NT, but the lineage is not physical, but the superior spiritual lineage through ordination. Those who abandon such succession violate the principle of typology to which the Levitical priesthood points.


Also when Jesus asks Peter if he loves Him three times, the words tend, feed etc. have a deeper meaning than just there surface meaning. In the Greek they stand for a deeper caring for and guiding than just the literal feeding, tending. The translation loses some of its power, but its almost as if to say I'm putting the care of my sheep, the Church, into your hands. Unless the flock dies, which Christ said would never happen (the gates of Hades will not prevail...), then someone must always be taking care of them.


[quote="JDGaney, post:1, topic:310335"]

Jesus is founding ONE CHURCH that will never be inerrant. How can this be when we have one church that says baptizing infants is wrong, and another that practices this? How can this be when one church does not endorse homosexual practices while another ordains non celibate gay clergy?


Let's overlook the double negative in this quote. it should not be "never be inerrant" but "will be inerrant."

maybe those distinctions aren't important.

Assume they are important. Then there IS only one inerrant Church, the Catholic Church. There are others who are simply wrong. There was controversy and heresy in the early church, even in apostolic times. It shouldn't surprise us now.



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