The word Apostle comes from the Greek ἀπόστολος apostolos. This means one who is sent out. There’s 2 ways this word is used in the New Testament. The first refers to the 12 apostles. The 12 apostles were directly chosen by Jesus and were the first to proclaim the Gospel after Jesus death and resurrection. This is the office of the apostle as the 12 apostles and Paul were to set up the early church.
14 And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach,
Paul also refers to himself as an apostle in 1 Cor 9:1-2: “1 Am I not an apostle? am I not free? have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? …”
The second way apostle is used would be used is generic as the spiritual gift of apostle. Examples are: Barnabas, Andronicus and Junias in Acts 13 and 14. The spiritual gift of apostle can be referred to as a missionary that is “sent out” . There’s an important distinction between office of apostle and gift of apostle.
There is some today who want to restore the office of apostle this is a heretical movement. They teach that their authority shouldn’t be questioned or spoken against. Use this as a red flag as Paul himself commended the Bereans for checking out what he was saying against scripture in Acts 17:11. The Bible doesn’t teach that clergy should rule over the laity, instead that we are all servents and use our gifts for the benefit of all.
A prophet is God’s representative to the people. A prophet as he fortells the future and warns of impending doom if God’s Word isn’t kept. As history shows, the message of the prophets were not well received.
Along with the office of apostle, some want to restore office of prophet. This is as well in order to rule over the laity with an impressive title. There are Bible schools in the Charasmatic movement that “teach” you how to be a prophet. God gives spiritual gifts, you can’t simply be taught the ones you want. This is a dangerous practice and some of the teaching leans towards Eastern Mysticism and New Age, only with Christian terminology. Biblically in the New Testament, prophets are to “…speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. 1 Cor 14:2-3
A priest presents the people to God. We are all kings and priests:
6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
With the spiritual gifts, no gift is better than any other. When people want to proclaim authority that you should obey them due to their “gift”, this should set off a red flag.