"Christ gave His Spirit to the Apostles; they, in turn laid their hands on

those who should succeed them and these again on others, and so the sacred

gift has been handed down to our present bishops" (Cardinal Newman).

Scripture "proofs": Matthew 28:20; John 20:22,23; Acts 1:8, 2:4, 6:2-6,

14:23, 20:17,28; Philipians 1:1; Colossians 4:11; I Thessalonians 5:12,13;

I Timothy 4:14, 5:22; II Timothy 1:6


From Vatican II document CONSTITUTION ON DIVINE REVELATION, Ch II, 7, para.

2: "But in order to keep the gospel forever whole and alive in the church,

the apostles left bishops as their successors, handing over to them the

authority to teach in their place."

A recent meeting of Roman Catholic theologians claimed that the statement

from the Vatican II document LUMEN GENTIUM, "Because their divine mission

was destined to last until the end of time, the apostles were careful to

appoint successors to this hierachically constituted society" is "a

simplistic notion that should be dropped for the sake of church unity."

Cardinal William Baum (Washington, D.C.) strongly objected and said that

Apostolic Succession was necessary for church unity. The theologians

claimed that there is no New Testament evidence that the original Apostles

ordained a single bishop to be a church leader in a given geographical



The basis for ordination has always been Divine selection (Acts 13:2).

Apostolic Succession was not instituted in scripture, and is a false

foundation for Roman Catholic claims of Divine Sanction for a hierarchical

system condemned by Jesus (Mark 10:42,43).

In the cases where Roman Catholics claim that the Apostles were singled out

to receive a special enduement which they would pass on to others (John

20:22,23; Acts 2:4), in one case, only ten were present; in the other 120

were there!

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