The apostolic foundations combine with prophetic foundations as next steps taken next to extend the chief cornerstone dimensions, width, breadth, and height. The metaphor suggests blueprints written received the needed and necessary “building materials” for construction once Jesus finished His preparation and assignment, rising from the dead and ascending to heaven in authority to restore what He had redeemed.
Apostle as representative doesn’t show us the entirety of the Body of Christ, but does reveal an essential part of the strategy to produce that Body.
It is because apostles in particular preach the Message from Christ that they proceed with action based upon that Message: they lay these foundations with prophets for this reason. Message and messenger belong to all kingdom leaders, but apostolic function, in tandem with prophetic function, add manufacturing in the sense of “construction” and “fabrication.” That is, apostolic and prophetic foundations, one metaphor relating to the construction aspect of their leadership, also point to apostolic architecture, another metaphoric means of insight into the apostolic activity for which the apostle is sent as Christ’s representative.
Herein lies the particular missing from the modern church model that denominations cannot provide, that Roman Catholicism distorts, and the church growth movement has come to ignore. That an overarching architect-master builders carry a blueprint for regions and nations that combines the various expressions of the Ecclesia so that an observable representation of Christ becomes available to that spiritual arena and demonstrable in influence in its cultures.
Without apostles in place and functioning, the Ecclesia, though strong and viable independently, fall short of the ultimate design and definition of the Ecclesia Jesus builds because it lacks the apostolic and prophetic foundations from which a regional blueprint applies that design and definition to kingdom purpose greater than any one individual Ecclesia assembly.
For this reason alone (among other reasons), the apostle and prophet foundational matrix remains connected more directly to Jesus and cannot be redefined in organizational models that require these blueprint leaders to answer to boards for the oversight of their kingdom assignments. Since they originate with Christ as special representatives of His strategic purposes, both apostles and prophets must answer more directly to Him. The task of the kingdom leaders rests in determining true from false, not directing the decision making and problem solving processes available through foundational leaders at the expense of their more exalted function and position.
That is, Ecclesia in any region may reject or question an apostle’s authenticity, but they cannot properly control that apostle’s kingdom function. The apostolic and prophetic foundational matrix remains the one place where Jesus is most involved with His kingdom Ecclesia.
Note the unique difference between the apostles representing Jesus exhibited on earth and the apostles representing Jesus exalted in heaven.
Same apostles. Different representation. Jesus as rejected Savior. Jesus as ruling King. Note the massive difference between the apostles before and after: they were representing Jesus both before and after, that is, but they were representing the reality of His mission. Before the Cross and Resurrection, Ascension and Intercession, they were representing Him rejected. After, they were representing Him in kingdom come victory.