Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Lessons From The Early Church

This message was brought by Andrew DCruz on June 7th, 2020 at Word of Grace. To listen to the audio please click here

Acts 2:42-47
The Fellowship of the Believers - 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

It shows us what the community looked like after Pentecost, and describes the life of the early church. What we see is that they valued these three things:
Fellowship; which led to everyone being filled with awe at the signs and wonders that followed.
Prayer, Teaching and Fellowship
Generosity and Community
Growth and Favor among all.

As a result of these three things, we see what their community looked like and what happened to within that community. They took care of their neighbours and showed one another love and kindness. They were truly a church of close-knit friends who enjoyed fellowship with one another.

V44  All the believers were together and had everything in common.- They had a strong community and sense of family to the level where they shared their possessions saying, what’s mine is yours. We see that they paid a lot of attention to their neighbours, the circumstances they were in and not just that, they were all friends.

V46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,
they met together, they broke bread together which shows us that breaking bread is important because its emphasized and mentioned twice in this passage alone.

V47 praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

Then they found themselves enjoying the favour of God with all, within their community as well as outside their community. Enjoying the favour of God is truly a blessing and it stems from not only how your relationship with God is but also how your relationships with his people and your community are too.

Three Key Points :

These three are extremely important to the building up of our Christian faith. We have to be submitted to the teaching of God’s word and what Jesus wants to tell us, not what we want to tell one another or what we want to hear. We need to focus on what the word says, and you can only get that by actively listening to the word of God and also actively wanting to be changed by it.

Prayer is emphasized and talked about in so many scriptures in the bible, where it teachers us how to pray and shows us its importance.

Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

The bible tells us to be faithful in prayer and not just for our own needs, but for other people too. We’re called to pray for our leaders, our friends, our bosses and families because we know that our prayers will be answered.

 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing, speaks of fellowship. We should see that the fellowship we share is one that encourages one another. There’s enough negativity in the world, fellowship is when we encourage each other and are there to support each others success, where it brings me great joy to see you succeed and vice-versa.

Once you renew your mind, you start thinking as God does, and a lot of creative thinking and approaching problems from different angles comes when you have the mind of Christ. So build one another up spiritually and mentally. A healthy community is essential to having a good relationship with God because you can’t love God and hate your brother.

As we see from the passage, nobody lacked anything. This wasn’t because there were no needs, there were, it was because they took care of each other. The early church would sell their own possessions to help other people in need. That is the level of love and community that they shared. Generosity just overflowed from them as the holy spirit changed them. They had a sense of family more than anything because how often do you see people selling their possessions to help out strangers. This sense of famly is truly so touching, they didn’t just prayer but took steps to help their family.

Proverbs 19:17 - Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.

Lending to one another is as good as lending to the Lord and we all know God is no man’s debtor. So when you lend to the poor, you lend to a God who is perfect and whose character is full of goodness. Imagine how the Lord feels when we help those who are less fortunate than us, how we have compassion for others just as he has had compassion for us.

Colossians 3:13 -  Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you

We should keep in mind that in the community not everything is rosy all the time, there are bound to be disagreements or hurt feelings once in a while, but what is important is learning to deal with them and resolve conflict in a healthy manner.

So bearing with each other and forgiving one another. For he who has been forgiven much should also forgive. We tend to expect more grace than we’re willing to give out. We need to remember how the Lord has forgiven our sins and therefore we should be quick to forgive too, especially in the church community. Extend grace to people.

The third point shows us what happened to the church as a result of these
 We see that many were added to their number. The growth of the early church happened because of the Power of God but also because their community was so incredibly attractive. It made people wonder how such a loving community was established. When the peace and love of God surround you, your life is changed and as a result, the life of those around you is also changed. What happens is the Holy Spirit comes upon you transforms your life but also you have a community of people that support the life-changing transformation.

Psalm 5:12 - Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

Which we can see with these early Christians where the Lord blessed them as he viewed them as righteous. Not because of their works, but also because they were living a Godly upright life.

Let’s model our lives to one similar to the early church. Naturally, we can’t do exactly as they did right now, but what we can do is break bread over zoom, spend time with one another catching up and contribute whenever we can help people in need and continue to build a healthy community.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit-filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that has people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service.  Word of Grace is a part of a wider international family of Churches called RegionsBeyond.To know more about us please log onto 

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