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Our Future

To know our future, we must understand and embrace our past. In the past we were known as a purely "apostolic team," today we are a team ministry of like-minded five-fold ministers. The Prophet Isaiah says that God declares the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10). By beginning with the end in His mind we believe that God had the future of ATM prepared from the foundation of the earth, which first manifested in the 1970's and will continue to be realized until His literal return.  Until that time we will continue to equip the saints of God to complete the work of the ministry, both in the church and outside its walls. It is this belief and trust in the faithfulness and timelessness of the Lord that drives us into the future.  We are headed into what is unknown to us, but already known and completed in the timelessness of God. We intend to vigilantly and passionately build on the foundation of ATM's founding fathers by continuing to forge ahead with new zeal and vigor in the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry. ATM will move forward in the attitude of Isaac, who redug the wells of his father and dug his own wells. The future of ATM will include continuing in this "Isaac Initiative" to redig the wells of our fathers and dig new wells. Today, the culture and era of time in which we live is categorized as random, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous, but with a biblical perspective, this won't only be overcome it can make us stronger. Today's culture is marked by relentless attacks on the traditional family, a reduced sensitivity to the voice of God replaced by an irresponsible affinity toward science and intellect as the source of solutions to our problems, a way of living where Christians keep their spiritual life separate from the rest of their life, and globalization, which can undermine a true sense of community.  Because of these and other things, many question what can truly be known, if anything at all. Regardless of what others believe can be known, we hold to the firm conviction that God can be known and wants to be known by humankind. To that end, we are blazing into the future with the message that every believer is a priest who can know God, hear His voice, and feel His presence. Coming to know the God of the Bible (The One True and Only God) and how He can give you insight to solve problems, redeem and keep safe your family, works powerfully outside of the church in the place you live and work, and unite us together beyond artificial connections is the banner cry of today's ATM.
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The cultural upheavals of the 1960’s combined with the spiritual impetus of the charismatic renewal and Jesus Movement, caused thoughtful Christians throughout the body of Christ to reexamine contemporary forms of church life in the light of the New Testament. Authors such as Howard Snyder (The Problem of Wineskins) and Francis Schaeffer (Collected Works) suggested that Christians, particularly in the west, had been compromised by the surrounding culture, and that their church life in both form and substance fell far short of biblical expectations. In the early 1970’s, while a graduate student at Covenant Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri, a young man named Ted Evans sat under the teaching ministry of Dr. Francis Schaeffer and participated with some of his students in a “L’Abrid type” Christian community. These experiences planted within him a vision of helping believers to live their lives within the framework of a Christian worldview and in the context of Christian community. Upon completing his M.Div. degree, Ted was providentially introduced to a like-minded leader named Gary King, who asked Ted to come to Celina, Ohio to help establish a fellowship of believers there. Eighteen months later, Ted found himself moving his family to Toledo, Ohio to work with Gary’s brother Ron, a kindred spirit who was already leading a group of Christians excited about what God was doing in His church. Thus began a wonderful relationship of men who shared a vision to establish churches committed to expressing the New Testament’s emphasis on a balance of the Word, the Spirit, and community life. Throughout the ‘70’s and early ‘80’s, Ted continued to establish churches primarily in the Ohio area. Gary and Ron King, joined by Roger Pugh from Michigan, focused their church-planting efforts in Ohio, Michigan, and other Midwestern states. Gary also did some work in England, which laid the groundwork for later expansion internationally. In 1980, Gary, Ron, and Roger incorporated their efforts under the name Apostolic Team Ministries (ATM). Between 1984 and 1987, the men associated with ATM, along with Ted and a number of leaders from the churches they had established, began considering forming a more formal network of church relationships. It became clear that by more closely coordinating their outreach efforts, they would be able to have a greater national and international impact. In June, 1987, a congress of church leaders resolved to become a network of churches. With this decision, Ted Evans was added to the directorship of the newly expanded Apostolic Team Ministries, International.
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