Marikina, my beloved hometown, was regarded by many Filipinos as the “shoe capital of the Philippines”. Here, shoes are being compared with the finest footwear of Italy and regarded as an ingredient of total elegance and self make-over. The largest leather made shoes in the world was displayed at the city’s Sports Arena, and many people are trying to visit and take some pictures with it.
Aside of the finest footwear of the country, Marikina also won the title “the cleanest city” in the republic. As a matter of fact, plenty of market places scattered all over the Philippines cannot be compared with the city’s Public Market when it comes to cleanliness. Marikina Public Market was well-organized by the government and vendors themselves are regulated by the discipline they earned from succeeding administrations. Thus, Marikina was regarded by its neighboring cities as the home of the disciplined people. However, the green city was suddenly spotted with a kind of dirt came from its religious sphere. Because at the heart of my hometown, a building was erected to be a worship center for a congregation established by a man named Arsenio Ferriol – a man who calls himself as the endtime apostle of the Church of Christ. His group was famous by their street preachings with matching some offering bags surrounding everywhere in the vicinity of the project area. Sometimes, they can be seen in public vehicles
like buses and jeeps and sometimes knocking at your own door bringing with them some envelops where you can put your donations to the ministry. So, if you are a lawyer or a doctor, or an accountant, and you are assigned to be a part of a missionary activity in a public market, you have no choice but to carry an offering bag and ask donations from those non-believers walking in front of you – a practice never taught anywhere in the Holy Scriptures.
Arsenio Ferriol, the leader and founder of the so-called “Pentecostal Missionary Church of Christ” or “the 4th Watch”, is just one of those false and self-proclaimed apostles of the modern Christianity. Other examples are Renato Carillo of “Jesus Is Our Shield”, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the Mormon Church, the Charismatic apostles, and finally the Pope, who calls himself “Prince of the apostles”. Why did I believe that these so-called “apostles” are frauds and self-proclaimed apostles? Because if we will try to look deeper in the Bible, we will learn that apostleship is not just a kind of religious office which anyone can attach to their own names anytime they want, or just because they have preaching talent. The line of the apostleship passed through according to some strict procedures and standards mentioned in the Bible, except, of course, those twelve individuals personally chosen by our Lord Jesus Christ. Standards which I think cannot be applied with those pretending apostles in our age. What are these procedures and standards for choosing an apostle? The Book of Acts explains;
And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
When Judas Iscariote was removed from his office because of his foolishness, and that the rest of the apostles decided to choose someone who will fill the vacancy, a procedure of election was set and the candidates were chosen based upon a standard written in verse 21 and 22, where it says;
Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.
To choose an apostle, it is necessary that the candidate should be a witnessed unto the life of Christ during His entire ministry. Question: is there anyone in our age that fits with this standard? Obviously, there’s none. Someone might ask me, “what about Barnabas and Paul”? Of course these two men were also regarded by the Scriptures as apostles. Paul, as we all know, was chosen personally by the Lord during his journey to Damascus. Barnabas, Paul’s partner was also a chosen one, but unlike Paul, he received his election in front of the members of the Church. Accordingly, he was elected by the Holy Spirit through an audible voice. In the book of Acts it says;
Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. (Acts 13:1-3).
Paul and Barnabas are personally chosen by God and confirmed through the laying of hands by the very apostles chosen during the ministry of Christ. (Galatians 2:9). Therefore, based upon these standards and procedures, no one can be declared as apostles unless he literally witnessed the life and ministry of Christ or was called by God in the same manner as of Paul and Barnabas. Its also important that the candidates should be confirmed by the very apostles of Christ.
Question: Is it rightful to say that those pretending apostles of our time
are true apostles? Of course, they can’t be! That’s why I’m saying that these apostles are fraud. They are fake and liars. Mr. Arsenio Ferriol of the so-called “4th Watch” is a false apostle – he who teaches his members to become beggars in front of the unbelievers; a kind of teaching very much contrary with the works of the true apostles of Christ;
Because that for his name’s sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. (III John 1:7)
The Bishop of Rome who regards himself as “Prince of the apostles” and that man Renato Carillo who asked his members to purchase the unbiblical “prayer cloth”. And finally, Joseph Smith, a man considered as an apostle by the Mormon Church, and since he was an apostle and that apostles will judge the twelve tribes of Israel (Matthew 19:28), so Mormons say that people will appear before Christ and Joseph Smith on the Judgement Day.
For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. (II Corinthians 11:14-15)
So, is it mean that the last day congregation of God doesn’t have an
apostle? God forbid. In order for us to be consider as a true Church of God, we must be completed in spiritual gifts. All the apostles, from Peter to Barnabas, were already dead, and there’s no one in our time that can comply with the biblical standards of being an apostle, as what we have already proven. So, who is our living apostle? Our holy and genuine apostle? In the book of Hebrews it says;
Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus; (Hebrew 3:1)