x520....A list of people that Paul worked with (fellow soldiers--apostles)
(Acts 13:13---Paul AND HIS PARTY)
(ACTS 14 :14--THE APOSTLES PAUL AND BARNABAS)
John called Mark
Sopater of Berea
The point here being that the entire church was released apostolically. Part of Jesus' purpose was to "set at liberty" (Greek: apostello--"apostolic liberty")
18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because
he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to
heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering
of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
(Luke 4:18, KJV).
Jesus operated apostolically--and so did the church in the Bible. they worked in small groups together--
20 For where two or three are gathered together
in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
(Matthew 18:20, KJV).
Jesus here is not making the statement that wherever 2 or 3 are gathered in His name--they will "feel God". He is rather stating that wherever 2 or 3 are in agreement that He is Lord, all His anointings and gifts and ministry will be present. He is making an apostolic statement--He is defining the apostolic system of operation--it only takes 2 or 3--they can meet anywhere--they are the temples of the Holy Spirit--and thus have all the empowerment they need--and His gifts--the "gift of Christ" (see Ephesians 4)--the gifts of ministry--service to God--are entirely present and in full effect.
After we read the story of Jesus--we read of "acts of APOSTLES" (it's not called "Acts of Pastors"--right??--but this is the book we keep writing and re-writing--study history!!)--We read and understand that Jesus Himself operated in this manner--which He was ministering--He did not do all the work--rather He released many many people (perhaps thousands!) to apostolic operation. He sent them out 2 by 2--He released the 70--He sent out the 12--He sent away the 5,000--He set at liberty Israel as a nation to freely serve God--at least all that believed.
Some would argue that Jesus told some people not to tell about him--that this was a discouragement to minister--that some people therefore obviously should not minister--
14 And he charged him to tell no man: but go, and shew thyself to the
priest, and offer for thy cleansing, according as Moses commanded, for
a testimony unto them.
(Luke 5:14, KJV).
This seems that Jesus is saying that this person should not go witness. But this is not the case--when we fully understand the context. Jesus was "undercover" as the Messiah. Remember how that He told His apostles not to tell anyone that he was in fact Messiah. Jesus was not to outwardly reveal Himself as Messiah--It is important to note that when he healed this leper it was at the begining of His ministry--and also that it was in Israel--it was among people who would guess that he was Messiah. His advice to a man of the Gadarenes (a place outside of Israel --in fact a Gentile nation) was quite different--
18 And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with
the devil prayed him that he might be with him.
19 Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.
20 And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men did marvel. (Mark 5: 18-20)
Jesus simply releases the formerly demon possessed man--and he then goes away and preaches to 10 cities! Jesus tells him not to follow Him--but rather to simply go and tell others what the Lord has done.
So from the list above we see clearly that Paul also operated in the manner of apostleship--that is--to work with others and release others freely to serve God. He did not work alone---and he also operated by the command of God--the direct words of the Spirit. It was the utterance of the Spirit--often through others--that gave the commands to the apostles in the book of acts--note:
Ac 8:29 Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
Ac 10:19 While Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said unto him, Behold, three men seek thee.
Ac 11:12 And the Spirit bade me go with them, nothing doubting.
Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered into the man's
Ac 11:28 And there stood up one of them named Agabus, and signified by the Spirit that there should be great dearth throughout all the world: which came to pass in the days of Claudius Caesar.
As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. (Acts 13:2)
Ac 16:7 After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not.
Ac 21:4 And finding disciples, we tarried there seven days: who said to Paul through the Spirit, that he should not go up to Jerusalem.
Ac 9:31 Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.
Ac 13:4 So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.
Ac 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;
Ac 16:6 Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia,
Ac 20:23 Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me.
Ac 21:11 And when he was come unto us, he took Paul's girdle, and bound his own hands and feet, and said, Thus saith the Holy Ghost, So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man that owneth this girdle, and shall deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.
The Holy Ghost--the spirit of the Lord--was very actively leading and speaking to people--but we understand this when we undertand that we can receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost--and be prophets--and speak what God want us to say.
However--since we do not follow after the format given the church--to assemble often--daily in fact--in small groups--so that God can readily speak through anyone He wants to--we often do not hear the instructions of the Spirit-- nor do we put oursleves in a format from which we can readily obey those commands. We put ourselves "under" the pastoral church--instead of in the apostolic church.