Introduction

Are you a New Apostolic? I was too! Who do you trust?
New Apostolic Church – Who do you actually trust? Can theApostles of the New Apostolic Church be trusted, are they competent and reliable? We clarify this and other questions in the following article.

When we have to make decisions in our everyday life, we often need advice because we don’t know our way around everything that life has to offer. It is important to us that the advisor is competent and credible. We have to make sure that we are well-advised, otherwise wrong decisions could have serious consequences. We, therefore, inquire whether the advisor has the necessary qualifications if they are honest and if they have had success in helping others.

New Apostolic Church - Who do you trust
Who do you trust?

Should this be different about questions of faith? No, not at all, because there is much more at stake here! It’s on a different level of importance to say buying a new car or getting legal advice. Faith is about the question of the eternal future. It is about what happens to you when you cross the threshold to the afterlife or when Jesus Christ comes again. It is about salvation or eternal separation from God. We see, it is even more crucial in this matter whom we have as counselors, whom we trust, and whom we follow.

True apostles are the best counselors

Can the apostles of the New Apostolic Church be competent, credible counselors? This is the question we need to answer. I remind you again that it is not about something irrelevant, but about your and my eternal future. Then shouldn’t we answer this question? If the answer is positive, then we can know that the apostles of the New Apostolic Church are indeed apostles of Jesus Christ and the best human counselors we can get. But if the answer is negative, then we can be happy to have recognized this, because we no longer need to be misled.
The question New Apostolic Church – Who do you trust is not only justified but also urgently needs to be answered.

New Apostolic Church - Who do you trust
Competence in questions of the Christian faith

Competence

Could we trust someone who misinforms us, who consciously or unconsciously doesn’t tell the truth, or who keeps important facts from us? According to the teaching of the New Apostolic apostles, the forgiveness of sins can only occur through the apostolic ministry. The acquittal of a living apostle or a priestly office commissioned by him is necessary for this. Forgiveness of sins and thus salvation is only available in the New Apostolic Church and it is always referred to John. 20:23, where it says:

If you (The Apostles/Disciples) forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from< any,> it is withheld.

Joh. 20, 23 (SLT) – John 20:23 (ESV)
Only God can forgive sins

We should never take a Bible passage out of its biblical context. We also know from the Holy Scriptures that only God can forgive sins:

What is this (Jesus) talking about? He is blaspheming. Who can forgive sins but God alone?

Mk. 2, 7 (SLT) – Mk 2:7 (ESV)

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Eph. 4, 32 (SLT) – Eph 4:32 (ESV)
Forgiveness of sins through faith in Jesus Christ

We also learn that sins are forgiven by believing in Jesus Christ:

To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.

Acts 10, 43 (SLT) – Acts 10:43 (ESV)

I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins

Joh. 8, 24 (SLT) – John 8:24 (ESV)

Other passages in the text provide additional evidence of this: Jak. 5, 15 – James 5:15 (ESV) ; Romans 6:3-4 (ESV) 3, 25 – Rome 3:25 (ESV) ; Apg. 13, 38-39 – Acts 13: 38-39 (ESV) ; Apg. 26, 18 – Acts 26:18 (ESV) ; … So if only God can forgive sins and these are forgiven through faith in the Lord, John 20:23 must be meant differently from the teaching of the New Apostolic Church. There are many interpretations of this difficult passage. I will mention only one because it fits best in the biblical context: The promised power and authority given is related to the preaching of the gospel. The gospel proclaims the conditions under which sins are forgiven. It also proclaims when and why these conditions are not met. In this case, the guilt of sin remains. Jesus speaks to the disciples as a group (the verbs are in the plural).

Not only apostles can grant forgiveness of sins

Although man has no power to forgive sins, he can still grant forgiveness based on what God has done in Christ. Every disciple of the Lord can do this, he does not need to have an office. One could object that according to John 20:23 only the apostles had this commission. But this would not be a legitimate objection, because from Luke 24:33 – Luke 24:33 (ESV) we learn, Jesus gave this commission not only to the 11 disciples but to all the believers present in the room. Scripture does not differentiate between disciples and apostles here: “And they (The Emmaus disciples) rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together”. From the text of the following verses in Luke 24, it is clear that it is about the same incident as in John chapter 20.

We see, according to biblical testimony, the forgiveness of sins occurs through faith in Jesus Christ. Reconciliation with God and the resulting justification take place through the recourse to Jesus’ act of reconciliation on the cross of Golgotha:

but God shows{seine} his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Röm. 5, 8-11 (SLT) – Rom 5:8-11 (ESV)
Reconciliation according to the reading of the New Apostolic Church

According to the New Apostolic witness, however, reconciliation occurs through: a living faith in the grace offered by the apostles of Jesus in the word of forgiveness and in the graces of the sacraments …” (1) What a difference! According to the biblical testimony of the New Testament apostle forgiveness occurs through faith in Jesus and reconciliation through Jesus’ act of reconciliation on the cross. According to the New Apostolic witness, people must believe in the grace offered by the apostles of Jesus and avail themselves of the sacraments, which are called acts of grace! As a result, one is not dependent on God, but on people, on the Apostles of the New Apostolic Church.

God is free and sovereign and we know that God does not depend on people. How else could Jesus have said to the thief on the cross? Today you will be with me in paradise ? This did not come under the acquittal of an apostle, he was probably not even baptized, and certainly not sealed! He recognized Jesus as the Christ (Messiah) and believed in Him and was thus saved!

New Apostolic Church – Who do you trust, can we trust the New Apostolic Church and its apostles when they proclaim false teachings?

New Apostolic Church - Who do you trust
Reliability & Credibility

Reliability – Credibility

Would we trust someone who says this today if it would no longer be valid tomorrow? Unfortunately, this is exactly what we are experiencing in politics today. Plans are made today that will be invalid tomorrow. Actually, one cannot afford this already in the secular realm, because it suffers from a lack of credibility. The social, economic, and ecological systems are also affected. If this is harmful in the secular realm, how much more harmful is it to us when it comes to the soul?

God is unchangeable, he does not change, he always remains the same. At no point in the New Testament is it clear that doctrine has changed in the course of the activity of the New Testament apostles. Why not? Quite simply, it is the teaching of Jesus Christ and Christ is God and God does not change. Chief Apostle Urwyler knew this too, in 1986 he wrote the following in teaching on cohabitation, homosexuality, etc.

Is the New Apostolic doctrine of faith unchangeable?

“The teaching of Jesus and the apostles is unchangeable.” He was right, the teaching of the New Testament apostles is indeed unchangeable. For this reason, it is impossible that fundamental areas of teaching could change or even contradict one another. Even in 1908, according to the teaching of the New Apostolic Church, a person becomes part of the body of Jesus by being baptized. Baptism is also the bath of being born again. The 1908 Creed (2) states in article 6: I believe that through Holy Baptism man receives the purchase mark of the Lamb and that it is the bath of regeneration, whereby man is incorporated as a member of the body of Christ ” .

Doctrinal Changes Regarding Baptism

From 1971 at the latest, baptism is only a prerequisite for receiving the Holy Spirit and a part of being born again. Now with the sealing man a member of the body of Christ! In the 1971 Confession (3), Article 6 states: I believe that holy baptism with water is part of being born again and that through it the person being baptized becomes eligible to receive the Holy Spirit … “. And further in Article 8: I believe that those baptized with water must receive … the Holy Spirit through an apostle, whereby they are incorporated as members of the body of Christ.” In 1908 baptism is the bath of being born again, in 1971 it is only part it. In 1908, through baptism, man becomes a member of the body of Christ; in 1971, through the Dispensing of the Holy Spirit (Sealing) .

If it were about the clothing of the parishioners or the wearing of a beard or other external things, changes would be quite conceivable, in fact very likely and also necessary. But this is about the foundations of faith! From the New Apostolic point of view, this is about facts that decide about salvation!

Should God demand a different sacrament in 1908 than in 1971

Could God expect another act, another sacrament in man to be incorporated into his community in the body of Christ in 1908 than he did in 1971? Can something in 1908 be a true doctrine of Jesus and the apostles but then it is no longer valid and taught completely differently in 1971. This is not possible!

There have also been proven recent changes in teaching which have been made public in writing. For example, teaching about the power of keys, loosening, and connecting power, or the position of the Chief Apostle in relation to the head of the Church of Jesus Christ!

How am I to trust those who taught something different yesterday than today, how am I to know that tomorrow what was taught today will not once again be invalid? The fact that the New Apostolic doctrine of the faith is about human wisdom and teaching is, among other things proven by their drastic change. Within a few decades. But on what shall faith rest? On human wisdom? No, on God’s eternal, fully valid, unchangeable Word, the Bible!

Falsification of documents

Unfortunately, I have to address another point. Can we trust someone who deliberately changes documents without clearly pointing out the changes? I am aware that this is a serious allegation. Therefore, I will have to prove this clearly. In 1932 the Apostles College of the New Apostolic Congregations published a document that contained the ‘Testimony of the Apostles to the Spiritual and Secular Leaders of Christianity – Established in 1836’ as its content. It is true that the Apostles College admits in the preface that the most valuable parts of this >>Testimony of the apostles<< (4) thus gives an indication that parts are missing, but leaves completely open to what extent and in which places the original text was shortened. I have both texts before me, the original text and the one published by the New Apostolic Church.

Not just abridgments or omissions

Unfortunately, one cannot speak only of a shortening, but one has to call the New Apostolic Church’s edition a forgery. Not only have extensive passages been omitted without marking them, but texts and phrases have been inserted, thus changing the message of the original. The deception begins in the first paragraph of the text, where the original says:

The Church of Christ is the community of all, without distinction of time or country, who are baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and set apart from all other people by the baptism of water and the Spirit. One body (Eph 4:4), one pillar and foundation of truth (1 Tim 3:15), the dwelling place of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit (2 Cor 6:16). It is they who explain God’s will to all people and teach His ways. It is in it that God’s word and ordinances are preserved “ (5).

Without marking this, the Apostles College removed the passage that was crossed out and simply inserted the underlined passage into the original text, again without marking it anywhere. This is just one example of the many changes in the text. This fact was also noticed and criticized by the theological press at the time. The New Apostolic reader, however, did not notice this and believed he was holding the original text from 1832 in his hand.

New Apostolic Church – Who do you trust, can we trust the New Apostolic Church and its apostles, when they often change doctrines that are crucial for salvation and falsify documents?

Apostleship New Apostolic Church - The real twelve apostles of the Lamb
The twelve apostles of the Lamb

Origin – Order – Principle

True apostles are of Jewish descent

We learn from Scripture that all of the apostles were of Jewish descent. Paul emphasizes this especially when he has to defend himself against false apostles concerning his mission as an apostle:

Are you (the false apostles) Hebrews? Me too. Are you an Israelite? Me too. Are they Abraham’s descendants? Me too

2. Kor. 11, 22 (SLT) – 2 Cor 11:22 (ESV)
True apostles are witnesses of the resurrection

All apostles are/were witnesses to the resurrection and ministry of Jesus. Jesus says in Acts 1:8 to his apostles:

you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.

Apg. 1, 8 (SLT) – Acts 1:8 (ESV)

Only he who has seen something can be a witness. Only those who are eyewitnesses of a particular event can report. If you haven’t seen anything, you can’t report anything, so you can’t be a witness. Have all the New Testament apostles really seen the Lord? Yes! Paul writes:

After that he was seen by more than five hundred brothers at once, most of whom are still alive today, but some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.

1. Kor. 15, 6-8 (SLT) – 1 Cor 15:6-8 (ESV)
True apostles are witnesses of the ministry of Jesus

What was the mission of Jesus’ apostles? They were to bear witness to the resurrection and the ministry of Jesus. Therefore, the void left by Judas could not be filled by just anyone, but:

So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us— <one of these men must> become with us a witness to his resurrection.

Apg. 1, 21-22 (SLT) – Acts 1:21-22 (ESV)

So they were all witnesses of what happened and carried the message into the world. This testimony is still with us today in the Gospels and the letters of the Apostles. In this sense, there can be no living apostles of Jesus Christ today, because no one can claim to be an eyewitness of the ministry and resurrection. Moreover, this would also be superfluous, because the testimony is available to us in written form in the Holy Scriptures. This written testimony is actually carried to the ends of the earth today by Christian missionaries. So today the word of the Lord from Acts 1 is fulfilled. Everyone can read and examine the Acts of Jesus if they want to.

Once summarized, the following picture emerges. The biblical apostles were all of Jewish descent, had all seen the Lord, were commissioned by Himself to be witnesses of his resurrection and his ministry! Can the apostles of the New Apostolic Church live up to this claim? No, and yet they call themselves Apostles of Jesus Christ! Can you trust someone who pretends to be something that he actually can’t be?

New Apostolic Church – Who do you trust, can we trust the New Apostolic Church and its apostles if they do not have the characteristics of true apostles of Christ?

New Apostolic Church - Who do you trust
Chaos & Disorder & Striving for Power

Career

God is a God of order

God is a God of order. Nature follows the order established by God. The plan of salvation for us human beings was planned and executed in a well-ordered way by God. The Bible is full of the ordinances of God. Disorder and chaos are a sign of human influence. Through disorder and chaos, nothing divine and inspired by the Holy Spirit comes into being. Paul writes:

For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.

1. Kor. 14, 33 (SLT) – 1 Cor 14:33 (ESV)

Where God works, order and peace arise and not disorder, chaos and strife!

What does all of this have to do with the New Apostolic Church? If we take a closer look at the history of the origins of the New Apostolic Church, this quickly becomes clear. Let us pick out a few crucial events. In the beginning, the Catholic Apostolic Movement emerged. In the first third of the 19th century, the effects of the Holy Spirit apparently appeared again as at the beginning of the early Christian communities. Speaking in tongues, healing the sick and all sorts of miracles moved the minds.

The Irvingians’ speaking in tongues was not understood by anyone

However, a contemporary witness, the co-founder of another Christian movement, John Nelson Darby, judged these things differently: “But the apparitions in Scotland did not correspond to Darby’s idea of the presence of the Holy Spirit. He decidedly turned away from these circles, which then contributed significantly to the development of the Catholic-Apostolic congregations. He could not see any sense in the enthusiastic appearances. ‘At Pentecost’, he once wrote, ‘the languages were understood by everyone, the tongues of the Irvingians, on the other hand, by no one’.” (6)

Tumultuous conditions in England

Also in the congregation in London, which Edward Irving himself shaped, there were such phenomena, a contemporary witness: “I went to church … and was, as usual, much gratified and edified by Irving’s lectures and prayers; but suddenly I was unexpectedly interrupted by the well-known voice of a sister, who, no longer able to restrain herself, and shunning ecclesiastical order, hurried into the sacristy, and there gave free vent to the outburst, while another, as I heard, from the same impulse, hurried along the aisle and out through the main door to the church. The sudden mournful unintelligible sounds were heard by the whole congregation and caused the utmost confusion. The rising to their feet, the desire to see, hear and understand something from each of the 1,500 or 2,000 people present made a noise that one can easily imagine Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)” (7). Tumultuous conditions in the church, worked by the Holy Spirit?

A false prophet – Heinrich Geyer

When the first secession from the Catholic Apostolic Movement occurred in 1863, anything but the order of God was also apparent. After the prophet Heinrich Geyer had tried in vain to call new apostles – the callings were rejected either by the apostles or the called ones themselves -, he designated on 10.10.1862, the elder Rudolf Rosochacky as an apostle. It happened at night without the knowledge of the still-living Catholic Apostolic Apostles. At that time, the Apostle Woodhouse was on a visitation trip with Heinrich Geyer in Königsberg. Rudolf Rosochacky accepted the call but was not presented as an apostle to the congregation in Hamburg until several months later in January 1863, when he was accepted by the congregation. Before that, however, in December 1862, Geyer was suspended by the angel (bishop) of the Berlin congregation due to differing views on the teaching regarding the rapture.

Back and forth in Hamburg – The 13-day apostle

The prophet was excommunicated after the events in Hamburg. (8) Only a few days after his recognition in Hamburg, Rosochacky turned against his calling, calling it an error and remorsefully returning to the Catholic Apostolic Movement. He wrote to F. Schwarz in Hamburg:

When the congregation in Hamburg heard the news that another apostle was called, their first act was outrage against the order given to them by God. It was not possible that this was a work of the Holy Spirit … Who gave the church the right to recognize me as an apostle and to proclaim me as such? If my calling had been divine, no contradiction could have arisen with the other apostles, because an apostle of Jesus Christ cannot help throw out and depose the other apostles of the Lord … If he (Geyer) had really been driven by the Holy Spirit at that time and wanted to have me as an apostle of God, the call would not have been secret, it would not have had to shy away from the light … Let us now finally ask how it was possible to get so caught up in Satan’s intrigues, to go astray and sin as badly as we had done… “ (9)

This was now the 13-day apostle, the split-off of the Hamburg church. What happened? What a mess. Was Rosochacky actually an apostle? If so, why was he not recognized by the other apostles and why did he later reject it? If not, was Geyer a real prophet who called Rosochacky as an apostle? Were the others not true apostles because they did not recognize the calling? How can a genuine apostolic movement emerge from a movement with false apostles? Where is the solid ground, the foundation? Is this confusion the working of the Holy Spirit?

Apostle-less ‘General Christian Apostolic Mission’

Now this new group, later called the General Christian Apostolic Mission, was without an apostle, and there was uncertainty, perplexity and dismay arose. In Hamburg, while Geyer was absent, the priest Preuss was appointed an apostle by a deacon. Up until this point in time, offices were always and without exception called by the Prophet. Geyer describes this as follows:

“WhileI was in Berlin, the priest Preuss was called as an apostle in Hamburg by a deacon. I was called to Hamburg by the chief priest Schwarz to give advice, but I could not undo things that had happened. It was done in the way of disorder, just as Reuben mounted his father Jacob’s bed (Gen. 35:22 – Ed), so I could not kill such an illegitimate child. We had to bear our fate until this brother Preuss died on July 25, 1878. I’m silent about all the suffering that happened to us during that time. “ (10) So the prophet Geyer about the second apostle after the split from the Catholic-Apostolic Movement!

Disorder in Hamburg

Geyer, who himself had called Rosochacky by way of disorder, described the appointment of Preuss as disordered: “It was a fate that had to be borne, like an illegitimate child that could not be killed, which caused a lot of suffering!” This was now the second apostle after the split from the Catholic Apostolic Movement.

Unfortunately, we have not yet reached the New Apostolic Church. The General Christian Apostolic Mission initially had its congregations and followers in Hamburg, Berlin, northern Germany, and later also in Holland (where it was initially called Apostolische Zending and later Hersteld Apostolische Zendingkerk). In 1964, Geyer called 4 other Apostles (Stechmann, Hohl, Hoppe and Bösecke) for certain tribes (Apostle districts). The apostle Schwarz installed FW Menkhoff as apostle in 1872.

Riots in Hamburg

In 1878 there were tumultuous events during a church service in Hamburg. At that time, the community was in a rage. the question of the succession of the late apostle Prussia. Heinrich Geyer left the parish hall with the majority of the parishioners. Only a small number stayed with the insurgents. From this small number of parishioners – among them Fritz Krebs, who later became Chief Apostle, he had come specially from the Harz and supported the tumult – the New Apostolic congregations later emerged.

The events in detail: On Sunday, March 31, 1878, he (Geyer) called the local subdeacon JFL Güldner as apostle for northern Germany and Scandinavia in the service of the Hamburg congregation “ . (11) At that time the apostle Preuss was probably suffering from stomach cancer on his sickbed. “Preuss, who obviously felt ignored, … appointed ‘still on his deathbed’ the elder Eduard Wichmann ‘as his successor’… Under the influence of Wichmann – who (according to F. Schwarz) ‘wished to be an apostle himself’ … – and Krebs, the opponents of Geyer and his followers tried to prevent the separation of Güldner by all means” (12).

An undignified church service

An eyewitness reports on the vocation service on August 4th, 1878 after the death of Apostle Preuss, who had died shortly before on July 25th, 1878:

When the call (Güldner’s) was pronounced by the prophet Geyer, if I am not mistaken, a contradiction arose … from the community, I still remember for sure that F. Wachmann … shouted: “We have to divorce” … Then Wichmann got up, pressed the prophet Geyer down with both hands on his shoulder and said: “Now I want to take matters into my own hands” … As far as I know, Krebs and two other servants from the Harz were with Karl that morning Frank arrived at Alsterweg, but they did not come to the afternoon service … Then on the same evening such a meeting and vote actually took place in the apartment of the evangelist Gerstenkorn, the rejection of the apostle Güldner’s calling and the separation was decided … then the followers of the Krebs and comrades denied access to the chapel for the apostle Güldner and the prophet Geyer and their followers “ (12).

The ‚new order‘

This was no longer necessary: “The events in that service must indeed have been undignified … In any case, Geyer and his followers took off their robes, left the entire church and altar furnishings, and walked away from the “desecrated place” without saying a word in order to never enter it again, while an ear-witness told them … “shouted out those furious swear words after them” “ (13). Only a small remnant of about 50 church members remained. From this remnant and the small north German congregations, the apostolic congregation, the so-called ‘New Order’, developed. The actual birth of the New Apostolic Church can be seen in these events of 1878. Chaotic scenes followed in the rest of the congregation, which was now once again without an apostle. The other apostles were responsible for other tribes, more precisely apostle districts.

Everyone called everyone an apostle

Wichmann was appointed as an apostle by Preuss but not yet called and appointed by anyone! There were wild apostolic calls, but these did not actually lead to new apostles. F. Schwarz writes: “The wife of the one elder called her husband by prophecy, and the son called his father to be an apostle in the tribe; so there were already two apostles. A maid called her master to be an apostle, so that was three. A fourth was quietly called by other prophecies. Yes, I know of several brothers who thought they could be apostles for the tribe “ (14). It was only later that this ‘new order’ was called the New Apostolic Congregation and only from 1921 the New Apostolic Church. We can again ask the question here: Who was a real apostle, who was a false apostle, who was a real prophet, and who was a false prophet?

Appointments via appointments also in Braunschweig

It should be mentioned briefly that one year later, on July 25, 1879, undignified scenes occurred again in Braunschweig when the question of Güldner’s appeal was discussed again. Also present were Apostles Schwarz, Menkhoff and Hohl, the prophets Marticke and Fritz Krebs. An eyewitness reports: “One asked God “whether Güldner was an apostle”, and when no answer came to three questions, one literally shouted at God “why he gave no answer”. This went on for a while until the whole congregation fell into such an ecstasy that appeals were made over appeals, one screamed this, the other that. One called out this one, and the other screamed, “No, it shall be him.” … The end of the story was that Menkhoff first took over the management, and then Krebs was designated” (15).

We also learn the following from an original report of what happened in Braunschweig: “As can be seen from the entire appearance of the apostle Scwarz, the rebels had deliberately misinformed this apostle about the personality, faith, and ability of apostle J. Güldner. … Only, therefore, can it be explained that Apostle Schwarz even rejects the answer God gave him through the prophet Martike from Berlin when he asked God in this meeting in Braunschweig whether Güldner was an apostle called by the Lord” (16). “Wichmann, who was appointed as an apostle by Apostle Preuss and was called as an apostle by his wife and son in the turmoil of August 4, 1878, was installed as a bishop by Apostle Menkhoff, but a few months later Menkhoff>>removed him from office because of lack<< of time. (17).

The takeover of power by Apostle Fritz Krebs

In 1895, the future apostle Fritz Krebs took advantage of the death of Apostle Schwarz to extend his sphere of influence to Holland and finally introduce the Chief Apostle office, which had not existed in the present sense until then. This also led to unrest and divisions. The turbulence did not subside. The history of the New Apostolic Church is above all a succession of conflicts within its own ranks, divisions, and exclusions. Even during the time of Chief Apostles Niehaus and Bischoff, there was a great deal of suffering, many exclusions, and secessions. The author of the book “God has ways in the desert documents in detail over 100 splits and excommunications since 1863!

It would go beyond the scope of this article to describe everything in detail. I will only briefly name the more significant groups that have split off from the New Apostolic Church or that have arisen through excommunication, in order to make this fact clear: Hersteld Apostolische Zendingskerk / Netherlands (1897), Hersteld Apostolische Zendingsgemeente (1900/1930), Community of Divine Socialism / Apostle Ministry of Judah (1902), Apostolic Church of Queensland (1911), Reformed-Apostolic Congregation Association (1921), Apostle Ministry of Jesus Christ (1923), Apostolic Genootschap (1940), Christians of our time (1949), Apostolic Congregation of Saarland ( 1951), Apostolic Church / Apostel Unity (South Africa 1954), Apostolic Community (1955), United Church of India (1974), Apostolische Gemeinde e. V. (1989).

A minimum of information for assessment

We have now taken a lot of time to shed some light on the development of the New Apostolic Church. Granted, it has become quite extensive, but this is the minimum of information that is necessary to get a reasonably correct picture of the beginnings of the New Apostolic Church. In view of this, it sounds strange to read, among other things, the following presentation about the emergence of the New Apostolic Church in an informational publication: “By prophecy from the Holy Spirit, the first apostles and other church ministers were called beginning in 1832. The first churches of the new apostolic faith were born in England, in Albury and London. From the second half of the 19th century, the New Apostolic Church developed from these beginnings ” (18).

The reader must get the impression here that the New Apostolic Church emerged directly from the Catholic Apostolic Movement and is comparable to it. The fact that there are hardly any parallels in most areas (doctrine, structure of ministries, liturgy, etc.) is just as little made clear by this presentation as the questionable development towards today’s New Apostolic Church.

Is the New Apostolic Church now on the right track?

It may feel good to be at home in the New Apostolic Church. The parishioners are nice, the services and the singing give you a feeling of security and belonging. You may have an order and you are needed. You might think, what do I care about yesterday’s issues, we live in the present and now everything is completely different. Is everything completely different? Is the New Apostolic Church now on the right track? The doctrine is still at odds with Scripture. The apostles of the New Apostolic Church cannot be apostles of Jesus Christ. A firm foothold in a doctrine of faith firmly anchored on biblical ground still does not exist! The origin happened in disorder and chaos and the teaching of the New Apostolic Church is still unbiblical and not trustworthy due to its changeability.

New Apostolic Church – Who do you trust – Can we trust the New Apostolic Church and its apostles when the New Apostolic Church has emerged from disorder, chaos, and the pursuit of power?

New Apostolic Church - Who Can We Trust?
Trust & Dedication

Who is reliable, who can we trust?

Check, check, check

After what has been written above, you may ask yourself, can we believe all of this? That is a legitimate question because the Bible asks us to examine everything that is brought to us in matters of faith. In the book of Acts, Luke describes:

“Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.”

Apg 17, 11 (SLT) – Acts 17:11 (ESV)

The apostle Paul writes to the Thessalonians:

“but test everything; hold fast what is good

1.Thess. 5, 21 (SLT) – 1 Thess 5:21 (ESV)

Another passage that clearly calls for testing the teachings of those who proclaim doctrines is Phil. 1, 10:

“so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ

Phil. 1, 10 (SLT) – Phil 1:10 (ESV)

So I ask you to once again thoroughly examine the teachings of the New Apostolic Church and its apostles. But do believe what I have written without checking. But place everything under the light of the Holy Scriptures, this is the only reliable standard that we have been given by God to orient and judge us. Also, check what has been written in relation to the New Apostolic genesis with the available literature (see Bibliography).

It is not about the reformation of a faith community

I still want you to know, I myself was New Apostolic from birth for over thirty years. This writing did not come out of disappointment or because I want to harm the New Apostolic Church. I am very concerned about everyone who is a member of the New Apostolic Church. My love for you and for my Lord Jesus Christ drove me to write down these lines for you. It is not about reforming an entire religious community, no matter how desirable this would be. It’s about every single soul, it’s about you and your eternal future!

Believe Jesus crucified
Believe in Jesus!

There is one you can trust for sure and that is Jesus Christ. He says:

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Joh. 14, 6 (SLT) – John 14:6 (ESV)

Jesus Christ is the truth! In the scriptures of the New and Old Testaments, we learn about Jesus Christ, the truth. He also tells us how to come to God the Father, through Him! He is also the way and whoever treads this path comes to the Father and thus to life, therefore Jesus is also the life! Jesus Himself says in chapter 3, verse 20 of His Revelation:

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

Off. 3, 20 (SLT) – Rev 3:20 (ESV)
The Lord knocks!

Do you hear the Lord knocking? Have you already opened the door for him?

Prayer surrender of life conversion
Life surrendered in prayer to the Lord

Open the door for him, turn to him in prayer and ask him to come into your life, ask him to forgive your sins. Such a prayer might go something like this: “Lord Jesus Christ, you know that I have sinned against you in my thoughts, words, and actions. And how many times could I have done good and didn’t? Please forgive me. I repent of my sins and want to turn away from everything that is wrong. You gave your life for me on the cross. Therefore I am giving you my life now. And I beg you, take possession of it. Come as my Redeemer who will save me. and as my Lord who guides me. Come as my friend who surrounds me. I thank you for hearing me! Amen.”

If you have prayed this prayer with all your heart and meant it seriously, then you have now accepted Jesus into your life. Now he lives in you through his Holy Spirit.

Heaven rejoices

What happens now? You are now a child of God, great joy is now in heaven. You are now a Christian too. Have a look around your place to see if there is a Christian church that is faithful to the Bible. You can recognize them by how they feel about the Bible and what is at the center of their life and preaching. If they view the Bible fully as the Word of God, as true, inspired by the Holy Spirit and without flaw, if Jesus is the center of their preaching and fellowship, then you are at the right place.

Fellowship with Christians will strengthen you and will bring joy to your life at the same time. Read the Scriptures for yourself, it is the written Word of God. In the Bible, you will discover the will of God, how to participate in it, and also His will for the future of the world. Of course, you are also welcome to contact us.

The Lord bless and keep you

© Lutz Jusko

Sources:

(1) Questions and Answers about the New Apostolic Faith, Question 110, New Apostolic Church International, Zurich / Switzerland, 1992
(2) Creed from 1908, quoted from Friedrich-Wilhelm Haack, Die Neuapostolische Kirche, Munich, 1996
(3) Questions and answers about the New Apostolic faith, question 299, JG Bischoff, Frankfurt a. M., 1971
(4) The testimony of the apostles to the spiritual and secular heads of Christianity – compiled in 1836, The Apostles College of the New Apostolic Congregations, Frankfurt (M.), 1932, p. 3
(5) The testimony of the apostles to the spiritual and secular heads of Christianity – compiled in 1836, quoted from a manuscript photocopy of the Oekumenischer Verlag Dr.R.-F.Edel, Lüdenscheid-Lobetal, p. 3

(6) Beside the churches, Rüdiger Hauth, Neukirchen-Vluyn, 1995, p. 37
(7) cit. to: New Apostolic Church – Are there again apostles, Dr. Lothar Gassmann, Lage, 2001, p.16
(8) The Catholic-Apostolic Congregations in Germany and the ‘Fall Geyer’, Johannes Albrecht Schröter, Marburg, 1998, pp. 210ff
(9) Quoted from: The Catholic Apostolic Congregations in Germany and the ‘Fall Geyer’, 1998, p. 300
(10) ibid p. 228

(11) ibid p. 236
(12) ibid, pp. 237-238
(13) ibid p. 238
(14) ibid p. 239
(15) ibid p. 240

(16) ibid p. 241
(17) Apostles and prophets of modern times, Helmut Obst, Göttingen, 2000, p.81
(18) Advertising leaflet: The New Apostolic Church, New Apostolic Church International, Zurich / Switzerland, 1993
(19) Statutes of the New Apostolic Church International, Vienna, 1990, preamble
(20) Statutes of the New Apostolic Church International, Johannesburg, 2002, Article 2.1

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