“When the sky is the limit, it’s easy to neglect the foundations.”

These words from Jimmy Long describe for me much of the restoration movement. They apply equally well to the recent meetings in Florida. But before we go there, let’s do some history.

Apocalyptic vision was rife in 19th century England following the upheaval of the French Revolution. In 1824 Edward Irving, a Presbyterian pastor, began teaching that “the five-fold ministry” of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers had disappeared and were in need of restoration. The restoration of these ministries would usher in the Millennial Kingdom.

Irving and his followers began the Catholic Apostolic Church in 1832. The church ordained twelve “apostles” who were to be the last days equivalent of the original twelve whom Jesus appointed. It was prophesied that these twelve apostles would be the last to appear on the earth before Christ”s return.

Eventually these twelve apostles died, and along with them the Catholic Apostolic Church died. The German branch, however, ordained twelve more apostles and took the name New Apostolic Church.

In 1896, a Congregational minister named John Alexander Dowie founded the Christian Catholic Church. In 1901, with 5,000 followers, Dowie established the “City of Zion” in north-east Illinois and ran it as a theocracy. In 1904, he revealed that he had been Divinely commissioned to be the “First Apostle” and told his followers to anticipate the full restoration of apostolic Christianity. In 1906, the community began to break down and Dowie passed away the following year.

Following the famed Azusa Street revival in 1906, the idea of the restoration of “the five-fold ministry” and apocalyptic fervor were renewed. Pentecostal denominations in England, Australia, Canada and the United States elected and ordained colleges of apostles to govern their denominations. The idea of a five-fold restoration faded somewhat until an outpouring of the Holy Spirit at North Battleford, Saskatchewan in 1948. The Latter Rain movement was prophesied to restore “the five-fold ministry” to prepare for the manifestation of the sons of God on the earth. It wasn”t long before the Pentecostal denomination dissociated itself from the revival, citing numerous problems with doctrine and practice.

The Charismatic Movement of the 1960s and 1970s saw elements of restorationist doctrine and five-fold teaching, but the full resurrection of these views waited for the Kansas City Prophets in the early 90s. Then in 1996 Peter Wagner led a conference at Fuller Theological Seminary (“National Symposium on the Post-Denominational Church”). This conference spawned the New Apostolic Movement, which is becoming increasingly visible in charismatic circles as the New Apostolic Reformation or NAR.

In 1999, Wagner sought to organize the movement under the name International Coalition of Apostles with Wagner as the “Presiding Apostle.” The movement claims to be restoring “the five-fold ministry” today.

The doctrine of the restoration of “the five-fold ministry” is more than 180 years old.

We’ll continue later with some implications and answer the question: do we need to prepare for a coming move of God? See also
Restorationism: Hype or Hope? and the five-fold ministry and new movements

6 Comments on new apostolic reformation I

  1. Nick says:

    I can’t help but wonder whether all this talk about the 5 fold ministries is like talking about the cart before the proverbial horse? It seems to me that if there is to be an authentic renewal/revival/reformation of this kind that it must first start with the embracing of an Ephesians “who we are in Christ” perspective. Without our identity being firmly grounded in who we are because of Who’s we are this will inevitably become yet another faith-fad that is driven as much by publishing interests as anything else. I’m not sure these days whether I’m just too skeptical or just realistic. I’m inclined to believe that if we saw genuine apostolic expression it would probably be hitting the news headlines because of the transforming impact it would be having on commnities. We probably would have heard about it long before a book is written.

  2. speakword says:


    Your history of the 5-Fold restoration movement is good but omits Bill Hamon and his influence from the 80s and 90s. Hamon has used decidedly LR stuff and has also had a deep influence upon the Chraismatic prophetic movement.

  3. […] In the wake of Robbymac’s Post-Charismatic Series, Len Hjalmarson has a series of posts on the “New Apostolic Reformation” — [ I ], [ II ], and [ III ] with a fourth in the wings. Robbymac mentions the “NAR” in his series, but Len looks to delve into this one aspect more deeply, along with restorationism and other related ideas. Some great thoughts follow on the nature of apostolic gifting. I decided not to start quoting his posts and just keep this one short ;^) but those who have been enjoying the Post-Charismatic discussion may find this helpful as well. […]

  4. Nancy says:

    In the words of Martin Luther, “Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light”, the following propositions need to be discussed in their entirety by church leaders, pastors, and laymen alike. The Church is in danger of numerous heresies and various errors that have not been dealt with except on occasion by individuals. Therefore it is duly noted that the Church should come to a national discussion and debate of the various teachings that have arisen over the centuries since the Reformation and have caused many to fall into error.

    Humbly submitted by Nancy A. Almodovar, Silent Cry Ministries.

    1. If the church is built upon the foundation of the prophets and apostles why is the foundation being laid a second time?
    2. If there is again a new foundation, what happened to the old foundation? Was it faulty? In need of repair? Was it removed?
    3. If they have met the Risen Christ, where did they see Him?
    4. And if they’ve seen Him should we not take heed to what our Lord said regarding visions of the Christ after His departure?
    5. If the least of all apostles was St. Paul, the least being also the last, how is it that there are new apostles?
    6. If Paul was not the last of the Apostles, then Scripture is in error.
    7. If Scripture be in error in this part, how are we to be assured of it’s accuracy in others?
    8. If the word of the Apostles are not trustworthy, nor the Scriptures which they have given us, then why the demand in the Law to be accurate in their prophecies?
    9. If today’s prophets are not to be held to such great accuracy, than how can we trust the written prophetic words which are enscripturated?
    10. When prophetic words are given and then do not come to pass, why are they not held to account as the false prophets of the Old Testament?
    11. A “Thus saith the Lord” was also a favorite phrase of the false prophets. The only difference between those in wolves clothing in the past and those of today is the amount of media attention they receive.
    12. A true prophet of the Lord will never give a false or “wrong” or “erred” word as they were kept by the mighty hand of God from all error and falsehood or lies. Today’s prophets feel themselves to be real and accurate if they can prophecy accurately only 60% of the time. This is anti-biblical as Scripture tells us it must be 100% accurate.
    13. As we are taught, their “anointings” relegate them into a special group that does not either command them to be accurate with their words from the Lord, nor accountable to His Church, nor validated by His Written Word.
    14. These men walk around in their white suits flashing the anointing over sections of the stadium. Pretenders! That’s all they are. Charlatans spreading a false gospel that is not the Gospel of the Bible.
    15. They pretend to talk of sin but continue in their evil and wicked ways. And if one is to say anything against them, these white suited hypocrites command us “Do not touch the Lord’s anointed.”
    16. Ironic that Jesus rebuked the Pharisees calling them white-washed sepulchers’ when these deceiving preachers wear nice white suits and dresses.
    17. We are told we need “a deeper anointing to understand the hidden things of God”. The anointing is no different for the simplest new believer than for the most eloquent of preachers when they are both doing the work God has called them too. The file clerk sharing his or her faith is as anointed as the theologian giving his discourse to seminary students when they are fulfilling God’s plan for their lives.
    18. To tell us “don’t touch the lord’s anointed” is to wrest and twist scripture from it’s true meaning.
    19. As is the preaching that God is once again raising up prophets and apostles, thereby laying again a foundation where one has already been laid.
    20. Nor is the anointing to be thrown around like some fireball for the entertainment and emotionalism as is seen in today’s evangelistic meetings.
    21. All those who fell down in Scripture, at the presence of God and those who came to arrest our Lord fell backwards.
    22. Only those who fell forward were true servants of the most high. The only exception being John the Beloved, none other in the New Testament era is said to have fallen down before Christ.
    23. No where in scripture do we find Peter, Paul or any of the Apostles, nor Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel or any of the Old Testament prophets telling of electricity going through their bodies, or being “drained” from the anointing.
    24. We run to men, mere humans, for their touch. Thousands flock to revival meetings and hope to be touched by the “Anointed Preacher” and get their healing from him instead of to our God who is all sufficient and all powerful, by whom and through whom we have our very being.
    25. The Roman church tells us we have to go to Mary or one of the saints. While preachers today tell us to come to some stadium where they will be, to experience the move of God because they are the “Anointed of God”.
    26. Enough! Jesus is sufficient. He took the punishment upon himself and bore the judgment due sinners.
    27. Christians are to be taught to search the Scriptures and see if what is being taught as Christianity is indeed Biblical and accurate.
    28. Preachers declare to those dead in sins that they can raise themselves and come to Christ, denying that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone and that apart from the irresistible power of God none would come to Him.
    29. Christians are to be taught that human beings are born spiritually dead and are incapable even of cooperating with regenerating grace.
    30. We are taught then, to fear our spiritual leaders and serve them, which is in exact opposition to our Lord’s teachings that those who are greatest in the Kingdom are to be servants of all.
    31. This is utter pride as even King David, the greatest of the anointed kings was confronted by a servant of the Lord in his sin and called to account for his iniquities, judgment being proclaimed upon himself and his family.
    32. Their visions and dreams have clouded their minds and hidden the knowledge of the Holy from their eyes so that seeing they do not see and hearing they do not hear.
    33. Seated in their ivory palace in Kansas City, these modern day apostles and prophets would place the chain of imprisonment upon our necks and lead us back to Rome and slavery with their doctrine of ecumenicalism and universalism, trapping us again in the harlotry of that wicked and evil Anti-Christ, the pope and committing whoredom with the kingdoms of this world.
    34. Speaking forth words and prophetic utterances, being deceived themselves and blind leaders of the blind, they blaspheme the very Word of God which warned that the punishments and plagues found in the Revelation of John would be upon any who added to this Word, by uttering things they know nothing of.

    35. Sitting in gilded mansions with their yachts docked at bay and their luxury cars parked side by side, they insist that the widow must send them her last penny in order to have her prayers heard by God.
    36. They sell modern day indulgences procuring for themselves wealth beyond most fortune 500 companies while promising the poor a “heavenly lottery” system.
    37. The Seed of the Word has become the Almighty Dollar and that now stolen from the simplest of believers.
    38. No where in the Scriptures is money called a “seed” which we must plant in a ministry in order for God to hear our prayers to supply our needs.
    39. Modern day Tetzel’s sell “appointments” with the Almighty not to gain heaven, but procure heaven on earth through the acquisition of monetary and financial gain.
    40. This is Anti-Christ for it places a price upon the very precious promises of God which says God supplies all our needs and no believer ever has to beg for bread.
    41. Instead of obeying Paul’s command to preach the word when it is convenient, in season and out, these self declared prophets twist the words of Christ to gain power, prestige and prominence all the while crying that their ministries are suffering.
    42. Why don’t these prophets and apostles, whose wealth is today greater than the riches of the richest, sell their own luxury cars, yachts, homes and jewels, to supply for their own ministries and take the Gospel to the farthest corners of the globe.
    43. These profiteers, instead of casting the nets out and fishing for men and the salvation of their souls, fish for their wallets.
    44. If indeed, God will bless those with abundance who give to Him sacrificially, why are not this hucksters opening their vaults and pouring out from their abundance, thereby becoming recipients of the “seed faith” they put forth and by that “faith” procuring for themselves all that is needed for their ministries to reach the unreached.
    45. Christians are to be taught that he who sees a man in need, and passes him by, giving his money as “seed faith” instead to procure a new car, pay off their debts (which no Christian is to owe any man anything but love), does not purchase for himself the grace of God but instead the indignation and anger of our Lord.
    46. Christians are to be taught that offerings sent to ministries are to come from a heart of compassion and not clouded by an “if I do this, God will have to do that” mentality.
    47. Christians are to be taught that they are first to supply for their own household, than that of their local congregation, the poor and needy, and then missions. To constantly send money into televangelists, whose budgets can be held in better stewardship, is to neglect the feeding of your own family and household of faith.
    48. Injury is done to the Word of God when preachers spend the majority time of their sermons huckstering prayer cloths, miracle water, holy land oils that will bring blessings to the home that sends in their “tithes”, instead of preaching the unadulterated Gospel of Christ and the free forgiveness of sins.
    49. Christians are to be taught from the Word of God about Christ and His Sacrificial death upon the Cross of Christ which has once and for all satisfied the holy and just law of God, procuring the eternal salvation of those who truly believe and repent.
    50. Let him who preaches “seed faith” or “miracle” products be anathema.
    51. Wicked and evil are those who promise physical healings through offerings; as if God cannot heal on his own, but needs our money to procure His grace.
    52. Wicked and evil are those who tell us that if we want to receive thousands we must give hundreds.
    53. Wicked and evil are those who sell us modern day indulgences of healings, miracles and prosperity while stealing from us the purity of the Gospel of God which makes one rich where moth and rust does not corrupt.
    54. Christians are to be taught that many who claim to be sheep are nothing more than wolves in sheep’s clothing.
    55. We seek words of knowledge and wisdom when God has provided both sufficiently in His written word and in the Word of God Incarnate, Jesus Christ.
    56. Therefore, Christians are to be sufficiently taught the Word of God so that they do not fall into the emotional hyperventalisms of today’s charismatic and “yappaphilic” preachers.
    57. If I were to take every “revelation” that comes from pulpits today, we would have a very confused God. One says that God is doing a “new work” and that all we need are “purposes” to live by and God will give us peace and prosperity.
    58. Still others say, “Just speak it into existence.” As if you are God. Thereby, by their own words, they are condemned for they believe the lie of Satan, “you shall be as gods…”
    59. Christians are to be taught that the Word of God is complete; there are no new revelations.
    60. Christians are to be taught that the Word of God is sufficient; there is no need to add anything to it and if one does they add to themselves the condemnations found therein.
    61. Christians are to be taught that the Word of God is authoritative; all experience is to be examined in the Light of Holy Scripture and if true there will be no shadows, but if false they are to be rejected no matter how much they may have influenced your faith.
    62. Christians are to be taught the Very Word of God as their only source of prophetic words both now and forevermore.
    63. Testimonies are not proof of the Word, but instead the Word is to prove your testimony.
    64. Christians are to be taught that we deny any creed, council or individual may bind a Christian’s conscience, that the Holy Spirit speaks independently of or contrary to what is set forth in the Bible, or that personal spiritual experience can ever be a vehicle of revelation
    65. Seeker sensitive churches have replaced houses of worship, directing man towards man instead of towards the Lord of All.

    66. According to Romans 3:10-18, there are none who seek God from their hearts. Though we must show love and concern for the pagans who attend worship, we must be careful not to design the worship service around their desires, but around God’s desires.
    67. In the seeker-driven model, the worship service is adjusted to “meet the needs” [better called ‘wants’] of the unbeliever, making it ‘relevant’ for unbelievers.
    68. Purposes have replaced the promises of God.
    69. Man would rather listen to “purposes” which are nothing more than “law-light” instead of the promises of God because man’s heart is deceitful and wicked repressing what they even know about God and preferring the god of their imaginations.
    70. The theology behind this seeker-driven movement teaches that everyone seeks for God, and all we need to do is take obstacles out of an unbeliever’s way in order for them to come to Christ.
    71. This false confidence now fills the evangelical world; from the self-esteem gospel, to the health and wealth gospel, from those who have transformed the gospel into a product to be sold and sinners into consumers who want to buy, to others who treat Christian faith as being true simply because it works.
    72. Sin is no longer called an act of cosmic treason against a holy God as Jonathan Edwards says, but instead we relegate them to physical addictions thereby removing all accountability and ultimately taking away sin and it’s judgment by medicating it.
    73. God’s sovereignty now bows to man’s will.
    74. “Deeds not creeds” are the call from today’s pulpits.
    75. Yet, how does one do what they don’t know to be right? Creeds tell us truth in a concise and organized manner and the Bible itself is full of its own statements of faith.
    76. The Lord our God is one God, Hallelujah!
    77. That “All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, so that the man of God may be perfected, being fully furnished for every good work” is the Biblical mandate which includes the teaching that doctrine is good for us.
    78. “God was manifested in flesh, was justified in Spirit, was seen by angels, was proclaimed among nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.” Is a biblical declaration of the deity and humanity of Jesus, thereby being in itself one of the earliest creeds.
    79. Scriptures is used to prove sermon points instead of sermons built upon the Scriptures
    80. Numerous translations that are in actuality paraphrases are used for doctrine and teaching when they are not true to the original manuscripts but instead are man’s opinion of them.
    81. The popularity of preachers printed materials is the basis of testing if teachings held therein are true.
    82. Scripture tells us that all things are to be held in the Light of God’s Word.
    83. These influential men encourage us to rejoin Rome, hugging the harlot and discard that they are diametrically opposed to the Biblical Doctrine of Justification by Faith and instead embrace them as brothers and sisters for the sake of unity. Compromise is the cancer that kills churches.
    84. Love and unity are primary articles taught from pulpits negating the responsibility of all preachers to preach Law and Gospel at every opportunity, for the Gospel is the Power of God unto salvation.
    85. Grace and Truth are what we are commanded by Scripture to teach and preach.
    86. We are commanded to preach “Peace. Peace” when there are ravenous wolves among us. But I dare say, that if there is a wolf in the sheep pen you are not about to befriend it, but get out your double barrel shot gun and shoot. Maybe not to kill but at least to put the fear of God into it.
    87. Warned not to judge, they forget that we are to judge angels and are therefore commanded to judge those who profess to be believers.
    88. Personality tests and Spiritual Gifts Assessments are given though they are based upon the heretical teachings of Carl Jung and the Biblical model with regards to the Spiritual gifts is, if not utterly and completely, then partially ignored in favor of humanistic teachings and the wisdom of man.
    89. Division is more of a concern than warning those who deny the Deity of Jesus.
    90. Oneness Pentecostals are held as brothers in Christ though they deny the Christ of the Bible
    91. Feelings are the gauge by which we discern truth.
    92. Doctrine now is a mongrel system, a blend of mysticism, dualism, and Gnosticism that borrows generously from the teachings of the metaphysical cults.
    93. Prayer is denied and in it’s place a “claim it” mentality demanding material goods from God as if He is some magical “Genie in the Bottle”-God.
    94. Whereas, Scripture tells us to “pray without ceasing” and “the effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”
    95. “Christians are to be exhorted that they be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, deaths, and hell; And thus be confident of entering into heaven rather through many tribulations, than through the assurance of peace.” (from Luther’s 95 Theses)

    2004 Copyright, Silent Cry Ministries, Inc. written by Nancy A. Almodovar, B.A., PhD. Candidate Philosophy & Apologetics
    Permission granted to forward this to as many people as you know as long as the copyright material is included in the copy.

  5. Brian Burke says:


    We need to press on the restore apostles to the church. I remember in the 80s when the prophets were being restored to the church. They proclaimed, “The apostles are coming and they’ll set things in order in the Church.” That was a proclamation of a new reformation. We are in the middle of that right now and it’s fought by religious spirits of tradition, familiarity, Jezebel and also the instability and immaturity in the people. We need the apostles as spiritual fathers in the Church for the Body of Christ to come to full maturity according to Ephesians 4:11-16


  6. Brian J. Merz says:

    You people have a lot of free time on your hands!