AUTHOR: SCHMIDT, PETER
In This article Peter Schmidt looks at ministry in the New Testament and early church, comparing them to what we now understand to be ministry and office , with the aim of proving that offices as we know them, were not the explicit will of the historical Christ but were an evolution which occurred because of historical and cultural circumstances at a particular time and so we are not bound, Schmidt says to the structures we have in the Church today. He investigates this by looking at terminology and the early church history.
Schmidt does a study of New Testament words, in the original Greek and comes to the following conclusions :
The Greek terms for office are not used for people in the Church but only for Jewish priests, gentile civil officials, the angels and finally for Christ.
The term for priestly office are reserved for Jewish priests
The terms for denoting office are nowhere used in the New Testament of those whom we now call ministers.
He says the first Christians didn't have long term perspectives on organization because of their eschatological expectation and Christ's problematic view towards religious organizations they seen themselves a primarily Charismatic and not an organization.
Apostle, The Twelve
Schmidt examines the Greek term for Apostle, which come from the root meaning to be sent', and points out that this title carries authority with it as the early Christians recognized the apostles as having authority over them. Another argument he puts forward is that Christ would have been socially and culturally limited in choosing the Twelve. He says, that because the Twelve were symbolic of the Twelve Patriarchs of Israel, he could not have chosen women. Also, he says that Christ had no intention of making the apostles Priests and this was a later development. Finally in this