7.3.2 Foundation of the ministry in the New Testament

The ministry of the Old Testament was already an allusion to Jesus Christ. Everything that had been laid down in the ministry of the Old Testament is reflected in Him: He is King, Priest, and Prophet.

By His divine authority, He, the Elect of God, elected twelve Apostles. He authorised, blessed, and sanctified them for their service to the gospel. It was to them that He entrusted the administration of the sacraments. In this manner, His sacrifice of redemption can be made accessible to human beings (Matthew 28: 19-20).

The great significance that Jesus Christ accorded His Apostles is demonstrated by His conduct just before His suffering and death: He spoke to them, gave them the promise of His return, and interceded for them in His intercessory prayer: "As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world" (John 17: 18). The Risen One gave His Apostles the authority to forgive sins and once again closely linked His sending with theirs: "As the Father has sent Me, I also send you" (John 20: 21-23).

While the sending of Jesus Christ was aimed at effecting redemption through His death and resurrection, the sending of the Apostles is intended to make this merit of Christ and the fullness of salvation accessible to mankind.

As the ministry of the old covenant had been given to prepare the people for the appearing of the promised Messiah, so it is the primary task of the New Testament's ministry to prepare believers for the return of their Lord.

SUMMARY

The spiritual ministry is based on the sending of Jesus Christ by the Father. (7.2)

Through the calling and sending of the Apostles, Jesus instituted the ministry for His church. (7.2)

Holy Scripture provides abundant references to the content and nature of ministry: in the old covenant there was the ministry of the king, the priest, and the prophet. Everything that was already laid out in the Old Testament ministry is reflected in Jesus Christ: He is King, Priest, and Prophet. (7.3.1)

By His divine authority Jesus elected the twelve Apostles and authorised, blessed, and sanctified them for service to the gospel. The sending of the Apostles makes the fullness of salvation in Jesus Christ accessible to mankind. (7.3.2)

See also