Q10 for Frank: "For Apostles Only?" Re-visited

I think your response to question 9 avoided the first question I asked and misunderstood the second. Here's what I mean:
For the record, I haven't denied any of the "normal" day to day works of the Spirit you've provided in your answers nor concluded that you view those works as being non-supernatural.  
My second question was not to suggest you are denying the presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of the church or to suggest the only way we know He is at work is if we are seeing spectacular effects of His presence all the time. I was suggesting a conclusion in  light of my questions below, which is, it could be that built in to  Paul's  "ordinary" or  "normal" life for the church, is the assumption that the Holy Spirit is just as present and continuing to give these gifts to the church as He wills...all of which include utterances of wisdom, utterances of knowledge,  gifts of healing, working of miracles, ability to distinguish between spirits, various kinds of tongues, interpretation of tongues, and prophecy...which would mean, when embraced with the alleged normalcy of the rest of Paul's epistles and the book of Acts, in my opinion would still point to naturally supernatural church life.   
As for the first question:

A. You have made it clear in our dialogue that if there are a continuation of gifts (I Cor. 12-14), then they must look like what the Apostles demonstrated in the book of Acts.
B. You have also referenced Acts 2 twice and Paul's epistles to support your argument that the these  signs and wonders/"apostolic" gifts were done only by the Apostles; and to sort of pillar the work of the Spirit in the day to day life of the church as more ordinary.
My first question, abbreviated, was simply, If A and B are true, how can you reconcile Paul commanding the Corinthian church (not apostles) to eagerly desire these "for apostles only"  gifts?
I'll ask it this way: In light of the question above--since we know the Corinthian believers are not all apostles (I Cor. 12:29), what does that do to your view that these are "apostolic" gifts, that there must be Apostles performing them, and that they must look like what the Apostles did in the book of Acts in order for you to consider them genuine manifestations of the Spirit? 

Frank Responds:

The summary answer is this: You have misread the passage, because Paul doesn't say every believer will prophesy; even if Paul is making a command here, it's not for every believer to demonstrate the gift -- and that is exactly my point in my objection to your view.

The explanation of that answer follows.

I've been generous toward your point of view to say that I concede the point that the Bible says that the gifts continue, and I have pointed the reader (and you, Bryan) to the particular resource I would use to say that there's a cautious, moderated argument for such a thing by accepting D.A. Carson's exegesis of 1 Cor 11-14.  When I do that for your sake, what I am doing is conceding the point that there ought to be a fundamentally-biblical basis for our belief in the use of supernatural giftings.

The strange thing about that premise -- that is, the premise that we ought to be fundamentally-biblical on this topic -- is that it cuts both ways.  That concession doesn't at all hobble the cessationist but super-equip the continualist: it establishes the right bounds (God's word on the matter) for the discussion.  So while the cessationist has to admit that the Bible doesn't specifically put an expiration date on the gifts of healing, prophecy and tongues, the continualist (rightly demanding we listen to the Bible) has to admit that since there is no expiration date on these gifts, the Bible rather explicitly tells us what they are, and what they look like.  For example, the Bible is rather rigorous to explain to us what a prophecy is, and rather explicit to describe how the gift of healing looks when Paul or Peter or (since you brought him up a few questions ago) Jesus do it, and what the experience of the hearers are when the gift of tongues is rightly demonstrated.

So while I might rightly concede that there's no date fixed by Scripture for the end of these gifts, you have to concede the definitions of the gifts.

When we start there -- with the simple, authoritative place of Scripture in this discussion -- a lot of chaff falls away.  For example, calling hunches "prophecy" ought to be tossed into the round file immediately.  Calling every prayer for healing "the gift of healing" is (at best) minimizing real acts of miraculous healing.  Calling every syllable of gibberish spoken under the alleged power of "the Spirit" ought to be cast off as "tongues" (for no reason less than the reason Paul does so in 1 Cor 14).

That is: if we start there, and dispense with all the counterfeit examples of phony manifestations which do not resemble the Biblical examples of the gifts you say we ought to earnestly seek, suddenly you and I are talking about the same thing.

When we are looking for the genuine article, we have to then ask: who is gifted with the genuine article, and why?  Who is gifted, for example, with the fruit of the Spirit (cf. Gal 5)?  Plainly: every believer is gifted with the fruit of the Spirit.  How about teaching (cf. James 3)? Well, not many should become teachers, right?  How about eldership (cf. 1Tim 5 or Titus 1)?  It's a good thing -- a necessary thing -- but it's not for everyone.

And in 1 Cor 14, where you have made a point to demand that Paul is commanding prophecy, you have ignored that even if this is true, in 1Cor 14:26-32 Paul makes it clear that only prophets will prophesy.  Not everyone is a prophet.  
Therefore your conclusion -- that somehow prophecy is now arbitrarily distributed in the NT assembly (the arbiter being the unknowable will of the Holy Spirit) -- is not found in the NT.  Something else is.

To that end, I'll grant you that prophets will also prophecy -- but in the NT, the ratio of prophets to apostles is rather lopsidedly balanced to the Apostles.  In that balance, the point of course is as it is in Acts 2 -- that signs and wonders are being performed by and through the gifting of the Apostles, and not as some point of the hidden will of God.  In fact, the signs and wonders are being performed explicitly to make the will of God known -- to reveal it and make it obvious.  Peter says that explicitly in Acts 2 -- that the reason there is something miraculous happening on Pentecost is to validate the hand of God on the relevation that all of Israel should know for certain that Jesus is both Lord and Christ.
[The keen reader will note I have exceeded my word count at this point]

You're not presenting me (or the readers here) with anything like that -- not in purpose or in power or in scope.  You're asking me to take things which you admit are far less dramatic and far less reliable and far less wonderful, confess that almost anyone can do them, and then expect that somehow they can qualify as supernatural in the same way that raising Eutychus from the dead was supernatural.

I refuse -- and I do so on the basis that the Bible tells me to refuse them as something other than what it describes as signs and wonders.  Those are special gifts for some members of Christ's church who have a very particular mission and duty.