This message was preached by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on April 2nd, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click here. To listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here
For us as a church, we look at a church in the Bible and we model after it. In Acts 4:32-37 – “ Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. Thus Joseph, who was also called by the apostles Barnabas (which means son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, sold a field that belonged to him and brought the money and laid it at the apostles' feet.”
Acts 5:12-16 “Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon's Portico.None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high esteem. And more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women, so that they even carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on cots and mats, that as Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on some of them. 16 The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed.”
We see that there are all kinds of people in a church. But we have some guidelines in this church.
1. The church of God comprises of people who are regenerated. No one is born a Christian. Eph 2- a true church consists of Born- again believers of Jesus Christ. Romans 10:9- Those who are born in a Christian family have the advantage of being exposed to the word. But they have to take a decision at one point.
2. One heart and mind- There is unity in the church. Marriage is one sort of such unity. Phil 2:1-2 “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.” We do everything together in unity. For meeting together, to be there and to play my role.
3. Community- they shared everything they had. That is powerful. There was openness and sharing. We find out about people’s needs and meet those needs.
4. Signs and wonders- In verse 15, there was such power in the early church. We ask for anointing to see healing. We must be hungry for that. Let’s not be content with what we already have. Seek after him.
5. Full of Grace- we can be people who are constantly adding value to people and not finding fault. When someone has sinned against you, count 10 of your own faults. All these things are a result of grace.
6. Extravagant giving- in times of extraordinary need, they gave extravagantly. It wasn’t safe giving. The presence of God is validated by the giving of people. Only the grace of God can enable us to give.
7. Supernatural Increase- 5:14- more and more people were being added to the church. We have to play our part. With so much of persecution all around us, we can get comfortable not being persecuted. Let’s work while there is light. Meet a person who does not know Christ. Let’s be like this early church.
Examine our own life. Are you born again, united, fitting in with what’s going on, sharing, etc. Let’s not be satisfied with the current level of experience of signs and miracles. Let’s grow in our number. We will model the early church in these we will on the right track.
Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again), Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.