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 has 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. Word of Grace is a part of a wider international family of Churches called RegionsBeyond.To know about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.
Tuesday, July 28, 2020
Overcoming Challenges In The Early Church | Lessons From The Early Church
This message was preached by Colin Dr via zoom Word of Grace Church, on July 26 2020. For the audio please click here. For the worship please click here
OVERCOMING CHALLENGES IN THE EARLY CHURCH
There was a time of supernatural growth. Acts 2:42, 4:4, 5:14 and on and on and one. Would you have wanted to be a part of that church?
However, in the middle of this move of the Spirit and Word it was not a perfect church. Some people are looking for the perfect church.
Charles Spurgeon “If I had never joined a church till I had found one that was perfect, I should never have joined one at all; and the moment I did join it, if I had found one, I should have spoiled it, for it would not have been a perfect Church after I had become a member of it. Still, imperfect as it is, it is the dearest place on earth to us.”
The great threat the church was facing here was food! Can you imagine that? They were fighting over a leg of chicken as it were.
What were the challenges the church faced?
1. Greek widows felt neglected. This was a large church. The church was split on linguistic line i.e Greek and Hebrews. The Greek widows were not getting reactions. Today in this pandemic people are facing problems. We have all kinds of mindsets.
Some of them are:
Divorce mindset – When something goes wrongs we leave and find another church. The Greek widows did not have this mindset even though there was a problem. How did they handle it? They brought it up to the leaders. It came to the notice of the leadership.
Matt 18:15. If your brother sins against you. This is what they did.
Indian mindset – talk to everyone else but the person
We need to be a part of the solution and not the problem. Acts 6:3 choose 7 and full of the Spirit and wisdom.
The Greek believers were made a part of the solution. They got involved to sort out the problem. That is the biblical mindset.
Consultant – maybe some people come into the church like this. They tell what to do but will not help. They will find fault with everything.
Consumer - They treat the church as a Restaurant. They scope the church as if it’s a restaurant for what is on the menu. They come with the mindset that their needs should be met by the church. In a family, we all chip in and help to serve and cook the food.
2. Some people expect the leadership to do everything
To be effective everyone needs to carry the load and not just the main leader
We have an enemy who lives to deceives us. He shows us something shiny, John8:44, that is actually worthless. They choose seven men. How did they choose them? They were wise and spirit-filled.
We may think that this is a menial job but not in the kingdom. Stephen and Philip were among them (v8).
Stephen was full of God’s grace and power. He did miraculous signs.
Acts7 Stephen preached a brilliant sermon and became the first martyr. Acts6:15 His face was like that of an angle.
Chapter 7:59 Stephen died like Jesus. He forgave his persecutors.
The Bible records the life of Philip.
Acts 8:4 Philip went to Samaria- saw the miracles, cast out demons, healed the cripple- great joy in the city.
Acts8:26 Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch. The church was growing but were challenges. Whenever we face challenges, we have a choice how we respond.
Be a part of the solution rather than the problem.
As we serve god these are stepping-stones to begin greatly used by God. Satan will try to deceive you. Look for every opportunity you can grab to serve.
Don’t wait to be asked. Where is the need? How can you serve?
The result is the Word of God spread and the kingdom of God advanced rapidly.