The word apostle is known mainly from the Christian religion as a title of a religious leader, especially in early Christianity. The origin of the word, the concept for which it stands, and its specific expressions in various religious traditions are far more complex than is usually assumed. The term itself is derived from the Greek apostolos (Heb., shaliaŠł•; Lat., apostolus) and means "messenger," "envoy," either in a secular or a religious sense (messenger of a deity).

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