Twenty-first Century, An Apostolic Century
The Twenty-first Century will be a century of unprecedented challenge and opportunity. Like the First Century, which in spite ferocious and beastly adversaries saw the establishment of Christ's Kingdom and His Church, the Twenty-first Century will be an Apostolic Century! Before Jesus returns for the resurrection of the body and the final judgment on the last day all nations will be brought under the discipline of the government of God's Anointed King and learn Christ and the whole earth will be filled with the glory of the Kingdom of heaven (i.e. Kingdom civilization, the life and culture of heaven, Isaiah 2:1-4 and Isaiah 9:6-7, Psalm 110:1, Matthew 16:18, Matthew 28:19-20, Romans 11:25, 1 Corinthians 15:23-25, Ephesians 4:10).
Jesus prophesied, “Upon this rock I will build My Church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it,” that rock being Peter's revelation that Jesus is the Christ, God's anointed King. The Lord Jesus is in the process of building His Church upon the rock of His Kingship. Because of Christ's all authority and all power in heaven and earth today, "the gates of hell" (i.e. the principalities, the spiritual powers of darkness over the cities and nations of the world, as well as, the political rulers or governors of nations), will not be able to withstand the march of His Church in its spiritual conquest of Satan's kingdom in history. One of the distinguishing marks or defining characteristics of the Christ's Church is that His Church will succeed in its mission to conquer Satan's kingdom and possess the cities and nations of the earth! (Matthew 16:16-18)
After His resurrection, asserting His Kingly authority, Jesus commanded the apostles, “all authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth, go therefore and make disciples of all nations….” It is important to remember that apostles are Christ's ambassadors, His governmental men, sent to civil governments and nations to represent His heavenly Kingdom, offer His treaty of peace, and on the basis of His treaty (the New Covenant in His blood), bring His saving rule into every area of society. (Matthew 28:19-29)
On the day of Pentecost, Peter stood and proclaimed the good news that the oath God made to David to seat His Son on David's throne had been fulfilled in the resurrection, ascension, and enthronement of Jesus of Nazareth. According to Peter, the proof of this was the outpouring of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:30-34). The very heart of Peter's Gospel was the good news that God's promise to David had in fact been fulfilled in Christ's resurrection, not postponed until the second coming. (Amazingly, Peter doesn't even mention the Second Coming in his message on the day of Pentecost.)
Contrary to so many preachers today, Peter proclaimed Jesus is seated on the throne of David today! This was the Word of the Kingdom preached throughout the Roman Empire by all the apostles of the first century. Messiah's throne and His everlasting Kingdom is the foundation of the Church that Jesus declared He would build! If the 21st Century is going to be an Apostolic Century, Peter's message must be rediscovered and proclaimed by 21st Century apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers! Peter's message is foundation of the faith that must be restored to the global church by apostles and prophets today, if there is going to be a true apostolic reformation in the 21st Century!
Paul preached this same Gospel, “And we preach to you the good news of the promise…God has fulfilled this promise…in that He has raised up Jesus…” (Acts 13:32, 33). In Acts 13 Paul announced to his fellow Jews that the very promise God had made to David that He would seat His Son on David's throne was fulfilled in the resurrection of Jesus. Paul calls this particular message, “the good news of the promise…” Paul then goes on to quote Psalm 2:7 (David's prophetic proclamation of Christ's resurrection), “You are My Son; today I have begotten You.”
Remember in the previous verse (verse 6), God the Heavenly Father prophesied, “I have installed My King upon Zion, My Holy Mountain.” In Psalm 2: 6-7 the Lord God declared centuries before it happened, the exact time in which His Son would be installed on David's throne at His own right hand in heaven. According to David, God's prophet, and Paul, His apostle, Christ's enthronement would take place at the time of His resurrection from the dead. This is exactly what Peter proclaimed on the day of Pentecost.
Please take notice that in Psalm 2:8 the Heavenly Father prophetically commands His Son, “Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Thine inheritance, and the very ends of the earth as Thy possession.” This is an obvious prophecy about Christ's Kingship and His dominion mandate to disciple or convert governments and nations today.
Both Peter and Paul preached the good news that Jesus has already been installed on the throne of David as Lord and King. The throne of David is not empty today, as many mistakenly assume, instead it is occupied. Jesus is not waiting in some anteroom for the so-called "secret rapture" or the "second coming." According to both, Peter and Paul, Jesus is already seated on the throne of David; He is ruling the nations as Anointed King from the right hand of God in heaven today!
Throughout the Book of Acts and in their epistles, Peter and Paul boldly proclaimed that Jesus is Lord and King! As apostles of Christ, they also taught that the nations have been given to the Lord as His God-given inheritance, and not only to the Lord as Christ the King, but also to His Church. In his letter to the Romans, Paul explicitly affirmed the purpose of his apostleship was to bring about the obedience of the nations to Jesus Christ the King! (Romans 1:5; 16:15-18; and 16:25-26)
To the Corinthians Paul confidently proclaimed that the present purpose of Christ's administration of the Kingdom of heaven is to abolish, “all rule and all authority and power.” (I Cor. 15:24)
According to Paul, "Jesus is reigning now as King, and He must continue to reign until all His enemies have been subjugated and made the footstool of His feet." Paul declared that once Christ's enemies have been subdued or subjugated Christ's, then, "the last enemy" (death) will finally be subjugated or abolished at the resurrection of the body. Finally, he went on to declare that after the last judgment on the last day of history, then the Lord Jesus Christ would hand a perfected Kingdom over to His Heavenly Father. (I Corinthians 15:24-28)
It is worth pointing out here that according to Paul, God's apostle to the nations, before the Christ's final appearing on the last day to destroy death and to hand a perfected Kingdom to His Father, all the principalities and powers of the darkness of this present evil age must first be abolished or subdued under Christ's feet. In other words, before Jesus returns in His final appearing on the last day of history, the cities and nations of the earth must first be delivered from the oppression of evil and brought to the obedience of the faith.
My father in the Gospel, Ern Baxter, often proclaimed, “Before Jesus comes back for the resurrection of the body and the final judgment on the last day every demonic prince must bow the knee to King Jesus!”
Bob Mumford, Bible teacher and popular author, described Christ's present and everlasting Kingdom administration as, “the Kingdom that keeps on coming!”
According to the prophets of Israel and the apostles of Jesus Christ, before Jesus comes in His final appearing on the last day, the nations will be brought to the obedience of Christ; the nations will come to the light of the Church's rising (Isaiah 60, Matthew 28, Romans 16:25, and Ephesians 4:10). However, the nations will never come to Christ or to the light of the Church while it is in its present denominated or divided condition. The Church's doctrinal unity, which is so essential, will not be restored until the foundational revelation of Christ, His Kingdom, and His Church that the Lord Jesus entrusted to Peter, Paul, and all those original apostles has been restored. And the Church's governmental or functional unity, so necessary for the fulfillment of its apostolic mission to the nations, will never be restored until the Lord's Church has been re-formed, re-organized, and re-structured, so that it is able at long last to truly function as One, Holy, Apostolic Church in the earth.
Thus, the primary mission or mandate of the Apostles Theological Seminary is to recover the original revelation of Christ, His Kingdom and His Church entrusted by the Lord Jesus to the first apostles and preserved for us today in the Canon of the New Testament and impart this revelation to a new generation of authentic apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds and teachers, and Kingdom-minded leaders. The secondary mission or mandate of ATS is to work with the emerging fellowship of apostles, apostolic companies, geographic councils of apostles and elders and their networks of churches and together with them train a new generation of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers for the Twenty-first Century.
A Truly Apostolic Seminary
Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines a seminary as, “an environment in which something originates and from which it is propagated,” and also as, “an institution for the training of candidates for the priesthood, ministry or rabbinate.”
The English word "seminary" comes from Middle English for “a seedbed, nursery, seminary,” deriving from the Latin word “semen or seed.”
In the parable of the sower Jesus explained to His disciples that "the seed" is “the word of the Kingdom” (Matthew 13:17). Jesus was speaking of the Gospel of the Kingdom, which the first apostles would proclaim throughout the Roman Empire. Some years later Peter wrote a letter to the sons and daughters of the Kingdom who had been born of the Spirit and the Word of the Kingdom that Peter and the others had faithfully proclaimed throughout the Roman world boldly declaring, “For you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is through the living and abiding word of God.” (I Peter 1:23)
Ern Baxter taught, “There are two kinds of Kingdom seed. First, there is the Word of the Kingdom, the authentic Gospel preached by the original apostles in the First Century. This is the seed or DNA of the Kingdom. Second, there are the sons and daughters of the Kingdom; those begotten by the Spirit of God through the Word or Gospel of the Kingdom.”
Brother Baxter often declared, “If we preach the Kingdom, we will get the Church, the demonstration and body or instrument of His Kingdom purpose.”
Therefore an “apostles seminary” must by its definition and of necessity be a “seedbed, an environment, or an institution” where the “Word” or “Seed of the Kingdom” that was entrusted to and proclaimed by the original apostles is not only accurately studied and taught, but also where those called to fivefold ministry are trained to faithfully propagate that Word.
The original “apostles seminary” was actually the mobile seminary headed by the Jesus Himself. For three and a half years Jesus taught the twelve the mysteries and secrets of His Messianic Kingdom and prepared them to proclaim the message of His Kingdom, gather the sons and daughters of His Kingdom and build His Church.
After Christ's ascension and the outpouring of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost the twelve apostles of the Lamb together with numerous ascension-gift apostles like Barnabas and Paul proclaimed the Word of the Kingdom, gathered the sons and daughters of the Kingdom, and built Christ's Church throughout the Roman Empire. As they went about their labors throughout the Roman world, they continued Christ's mobile seminary, training fivefold ministers in the Word that they had received, and ordaining bishops or elders in every place.
Throughout the Church's long history many seminaries have been established to serve various movements or sects that have arisen: Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, Presbyterian, Anabaptist, Baptist, Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Charismatic. While these seminaries have much to commend them and do some good, it must be remembered that ultimately they exist for the purpose of training ministers in a particular theological viewpoint (seed) of a particular sect or denomination, thus equipping them to propagate that particular viewpoint and perpetuate that sect, ultimately undermining the unity and the effectiveness of the Church of Jesus Christ.
As mentioned, the mandate of the Apostles Theological Seminary is twofold: First, it is to faithfully rediscover or recover the authentic "Seed" or "Word" of the Kingdom, entrusted by Jesus to the original apostles and impart that Word to a new generation of five-fold ministers and Kingdom-minded leaders. Second, it is to partner with others of like faith and passion to raise-up and train a radical new generation of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers to proclaim the Word, equip the saints, restore apostolic foundations and reform the church, and to transform cities and nations until the whole earth is filled with the glory of the sons and daughters of the Kingdom of God. Hence the name, the Apostles Theological Seminary. In order to fulfill our mandate, ATS offers the Masters and the Doctors Degrees in Apostolic And Prophetic Studies. (For degrees and degree requirements see the menu at the top of the page.)
An Apostolic Reformation
Jesus of Nazareth is seated today on the throne of King David and ruling the nations from the right hand of God the Father as Lord and King (Acts 2:29-36 and Revelation 1:5). He is also building His Church, which is to be a demonstration of His Kingdom to light the nations of the earth and the body or instrument of His Kingdom purpose to conquer Satan's kingdom, possess cities and nations and fill all things with the glory of God (Matthew 16:18).
Since the beginning of the Twentieth Century to the present the Lord has been pouring out His Spirit to revive His work and restore the apostolic or Kingdom foundations of His Church. The modern church has seen the Pentecostal movement, the Latter Rain movement, the Healing movement, the Charismatic movement, the Discipleship movement, the Word of Faith movement, the Worship movement, the Prophetic movement, the Prayer and Spiritual Warfare movement, and even the Convergence movement. But today the Lord is in the process of raising a new generation of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers, and joining or connecting them together in the power of the Holy Spirit and the fellowship of the apostles to extend His Messianic Kingdom, restore the foundations laid by Jesus and His apostles in the beginning, and reform His Church world-wide. The purpose of the current apostolic reformation is to enable the myriads of allotments or congregations of Lord's Church to rediscover the Kingship of Jesus and become properly joined together or connected in the Holy Spirit to the Head of the Church and to one another in the fellowship or communion of apostles and elders so that it might function as One Holy Apostolic Church throughout the earth and ultimately succeed in its mission to disciple the nations and fill the earth with the glory of God! CAC
An Apostolic and Prophetic Curriculum
Today there is much talk of apostles, prophets, and an apostolic reformation. However, it is foolish or presumptuous for us to talk about an "apostolic reformation" without first rediscovering or recovering the actual revelation of the mysteries of Christ, His Kingdom and His Church, that was entrusted by Jesus Himself to the original twelve apostles of the Lamb and to the first ascension-gift apostles like Paul and Barnabas and preserved for us in the Canon of the New Testament. Therefore, the Apostolic Leadership Team and Faculty of the Apostles Theological Seminary are wholeheartedly committed to the recovery and restoration of the revelation of "the mystery of Christ" (i.e. the preaching, teaching, Church-planting methods, practices, architectural and governmental patterns of the original apostles) to the modern Church.
Luke called this knowledge, “the didache" or "teaching of the apostles” (Acts 2:42). Paul calls it, “the form, standard, or pattern of sound words” (II Timothy 1:13). This special "revelation knowledge," called by Jesus, “the keys of the Kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 16:19), and entrusted by the Lord Himself to His original apostles, is the measure of true or authentic apostolic Christianity; it served as the plumb-line or standard of truth for the early apostolic church in the beginning and is still both foundational and essential for us today. Thank God this apostolic and prophetic revelation has been carefully preserved for us in the Canon of the New Testament.
Christianity has content—specific and precise revelatory or doctrinal content! That content has to do with the present Kingship of Jesus of Nazareth, His Messianic Kingdom, and its divinely pre-ordained purposes in the present evil age. It also has to do with the fulfillment of the covenant-promises that God made to David and the fathers of Israel and the God-inspired Messianic visions of the Old Testament prophets by Jesus the Christ (i.e. the Messiah King and High Priest of the new Covenant Administration of the Kingdom of God) and by His Church, the Israel of the New Covenant Administration. That apostolic or Kingdom content and the historical record or account of its fulfillment has been preserved for us and for all future generations in the Canons of the Old and New Testament Scriptures.
Thus the Apostles Theological Seminary's core curriculum and its two outstanding degree programs are built upon: 1) the study and mastery of “the covenants of the promise” made to the fathers of Israel, 2) the prophetic visions of “Messiah's Day,” that were revealed by the Spirit to the prophets of Israel and which have been preserved for us in the Canon of the Old Testament, and 3) the study and mastery of the historical record of the fulfillment of those covenant-promises and Messianic visions by Jesus the Messiah and His Church, as understood and interpreted by Jesus Himself in the four Gospels, by the Apostle Peter and the other apostles of the Lamb, and by the Apostle Paul and other ascension-gift apostles and preserved for us in the Acts of the Apostles, the Epistles of the New testament Canon, and the Book of Revelation.
An in-depth study of both Old and New Testaments viewed or approached through the interpretive grid of Jesus and the first apostles comprises the core curriculum required for the ATS Masters and Doctors degrees. Special attention is given throughout the core curriculum not only to the apostles' preaching (the kerygma) and doctrine or teaching (the didache), but also to their practical strategies and methods, their mission and goal, and architectural and governmental paradigms or patterns revealed in the New Testament record.
In addition to the core courses offered primarily through the Ern Baxter School of the Apostles Doctrine, Church History, Theology, and Biblical Studies, ATS also offers dynamic and practical courses in our School of Ministry or Applied Theology, designed to enable each theological and ministerial student to specialize the development of their particular grace-gifting or calling, whether that of apostle, prophet, evangelist, or pastor-teacher.
Finally, to better prepare our students to minister effectively in the twenty-first century, ATS eventually plans to offer special courses of study aimed at analyzing or evaluating two-thousand years of Church history, the development of various theological systems and influential movements within Christianity, the history of missions and evangelism, the history of world religions (especially Islam) and the clash of civilizations. These diverse courses of study will be approached in light of the definitive revelation of Jesus Christ, His Kingdom, and His Church entrusted by the Lord Jesus to His first or original apostles in the first century and preserved for us in the Canon of the New Testament and with the specific aim, purpose, and goal of raising up a radical new generation of Apostolic and Prophetic leaders fully equipped to impact and transform today’s churches and the modern world for the sake of Messiah's Kingdom.
(To see ATS Masters and Doctoral courses currently being offered see the schedule of courses under the Degrees and Degree Requirements.)
The Apostles Theological Seminary is authorized to grant the Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctoral degrees in Apostolic and Prophetic Studies as preparation for Christian ministry in accordance with the State of Florida Statute 1005.06 (1)(f) granting religious exemption from State control to churches and non-profit institutions for theological and ministerial training.
In keeping with the religious exemption from the Florida State Regents for Higher Education, the apostolic and prophetic leadership of ATS has chosen not to seek traditional academic accreditation to validate our theological and ministerial degrees. Together with a number of widely recognized leaders of what has been called an apostolic reformation, we are prayerfully rethinking the way ministers are trained seeking instead to recover patterns and methods established by the Lord Jesus and His apostles.
After more than thirty years of teaching in a major evangelical theological seminary, Dr. C. Peter Wagner, founder of the Wagner Leadership Institute, declared in an interview for Ministries Today, “One of my first goals in designing WLI was to free it of many of the built-in, burdensome restrictions of traditional academia as possible. As a result, we are not fettered by required courses, resident students, resident faculty, theological party lines, denominational control, faculty tenure, library facilities, academic restrictions, institutional self-centeredness, financial endowments, academic accreditation or geographical limitations.”
In the same article, speaking of the aversion to accreditation on the part of the many new schools being raised up by apostolic leaders around the globe, Wagner goes on to say, “It is interesting that these schools serving the New Apostolic Reformation are not seeking accreditation.”
Then he added, “Many apostolic leaders have concluded that accredited institutions with which they are the most familiar are, by and large, old wineskins, either unwilling or unable to adapt to the new realities of the Holy Spirit.”
Wagner concludes, “I have found, however, that the leaders of these apostolic schools do have a deep desire for mutual accountability with peer institutions.”
While the apostolic and prophetic leadership of ATS fully recognizes that the present apostolic reformation still falls short of authentic apostolic Christianity in many, many ways, nevertheless, it is with a deep longing for "mutual apostolic and prophetic accountability" that the senior leadership and faculty of the Apostles Theological Seminary have chosen to look to the Lord and to our peers for accountability. Like the Lord Jesus and the first apostolic movement our validation is from heaven itself, not State Boards of Regents or self-congratulating, often skeptical, academic agencies that currently provide accreditation for many denominational seminaries. Just as Peter Wagner and others in the still emerging apostolic reformation, we have learned from many years of painful experience that merely academic accrediting agencies tend to support the "status quo", or “the existing state of affairs in Christendom,” rather than Christ's Messianic Kingdom and the restoration of the foundations laid by Christ and His original apostles and the radical reformation of the Church.
Therefore, as responsible Christian leaders, and understanding very well that over the centuries Christ's Kingdom has been high-jacked by religion and His Church divided into denominations, we have made the decision to obey our King and to be accountable to the emerging fellowship or communion of apostles and their networks or jurisdictions of ministers and churches, as well as to other apostolic and prophetic schools that, like us, are committed to training a new generation of Kingdom leaders and fivefold ministers for the reformation of the King's Church and of society.
Online Directed Study and Correspondence Courses
The Apostles Theological Seminary offers two distinct kinds of courses. First, ATS offers our online Master’s and Doctoral courses and directed studies, that are overseen by anointed and seasoned apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. Because these courses are available online our students are able to work from the comfort and convenience of their own home or office.
Course notes, including audio and video files in down loadable formats, are made available free of charge whenever possible. Course materials and some textbooks are also available for purchase in the ATS online bookstore to allow our students to work comfortably at home while still under the online supervision and direction of the course's faculty overseer. The faculty overseer for each course will make online reading assignments in required texts either on the course's "assignments" application or by e-mail. The faculty overseer will also require the student to upload written summaries of reading assignments. The student is also encouraged to develop his or her student notebook for each directed-study course. Practical fieldwork may also be required depending upon the course and the student's degree level.
Second, ATS is also in the process of developing the correspondence courses for some of our strategic courses. These core courses will be made available for use by apostles and apostolic companies in their Schools of Ministry and also by pastors and local church leaders in their Bible Schools and discipleship training programs where internet service is unreliable or too expensive making it difficult for students to participate online.
Correspondence courses may also require the completion of writing assignments or participation in approved field projects in order to assure mastery of course material.
Intensives and Seminar Courses
In addition to the online directed-studies and correspondence courses described above, the Apostles Theological Seminary offers special intensives for Master’s and Doctor’s level students. These three to five-day intensive study opportunities are highly customized events that are offered either online or in a variety of geographic locations as deemed strategic by the ATS Chancellor, President, and faculty overseers. The purpose of these intensives is to provide special opportunities for graduate students to meet with senior faculty members, specially selected guest professors, and other graduate students to review and discuss graduate papers and projects as well as to engage in dialogue about strategically important subjects. Special certified events and conferences may also be recognized for credit.
Also, in partnership with the George Kouri Institute of Apostolic and Prophetic Studies (see link at the bottom of the Home page) and AWC's International School of Ministry the Apostles Theological Seminary offers special seminars dealing with Christ's Kingdom and apostolic reformation of the Lord's Church, and other strategic subjects. These seminars are offered either online or in strategic locations throughout the world.
The Apostles Theological Seminary is part of a “global leadership training engine.” In March of 2004, while returning from 18 months of ministry in Kenya, the Lord instructed our Chancellor George E. Kouri to "build Me a leadership training engine for the 21st Century". As a result of this apostolic mandate, one of our goals has been to offer our outstanding degrees in Apostolic and Prophetic Studies and challenging courses for an affordable tuition to anyone desiring to equip themselves to serve Christ, His Kingdom, and His Church.
The costs for our newly upgraded and streamlined (fast-track) Masters and Doctors Degree programs are well below the average for theological or ministerial training. Our regular tuition costs for courses taken for credit towards the Master's Degree is only $33.00 per credit-hour or $99.00 per course. The tuition costs for Doctor’s Degree courses is only $50.00 per credit-hour or $150.00 per course. In addition, we offer an Introductory Course entitled, God’s Agenda for the 21st Century that is required for students in both degrees. The tuition for the this course is only $50.00.
Current costs for all of our courses are meant to be affordable for most prospective students and is not reflective of the value of the material.
In addition to our affordable tuition, there are two one-time charges required of all students wishing to receive course credit towards one of our ATS degrees.
First, there is a one-time registration fee of $25.00 to cover costs of student evaluation and the creation of transcripts.
Second, there is also a $100.00 Graduation Fee. Doctorate Degree.
Finally, as special help to students who do not have a Bachelor’s degree from a college or university and wish to submit a Life-Learning Paper along with their transcript for Post High School work done wish to have their life learning or work experience evaluated for credit towards an ATS degree, there is a $150.00 Life Learning Portfolio Fee.
As has already been mentioned, throughout the Church's long and checkered history many diverse seminaries have been established to serve various church denominations or movements that have arisen: Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, Presbyterian, Anabaptist, Baptist, Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Charismatic. While these seminaries often have much to commend them and may do some good, in the final analysis, it must be remembered that ultimately they exist for the express purpose of training ministers for the theological viewpoint of a particular denomination or movement, thereby equipping them to propagate a particular viewpoint and perpetuate a particular denomination or movement, ultimately undermining the unity and the effectiveness of the Church of Jesus Christ.
Therefore if the Lord Jesus has called you to serve His Kingdom and His Church as an apostle, prophet, evangelist, shepherd and teacher, or if you are a Kingdom-minded leader in the body of Christ and want to properly equip yourself to fulfill your God-given calling and Kingdom destiny, then the apostolic and prophetic leadership and faculty of ATS invites you to visit our Degree and Degree Requirements Page and our Application Page and enroll today in our Master’s or Doctor’s Degrees.