Archive for September 21st, 2010

Acts 2

Acts 2 is an exciting time.  It was the day of Pentecost and “all were together in one place”.  The Christ Followers were gathered and as Jesus promised “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit”.  Jesus told them this would happen after His ascension.  They were speaking in foreign tongues in every language of the very diverse crowd that was present.  People didn’t understand what had happened and thought they were drunk saying “they are filled with new wine”.  It was then that Peter arose – pretty early in the day at the third hour – and began to address the crowd and explain what was going on.  Peter says it this way: “God raised Him up, loosing the pangs of death, because itw as not possible for Him to be held by it”.  Peter is delivering a message of truth and explaining to people the sacrifice and power of the Cross.  He continues “This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses.  Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing”.   Peter is preaching it full force, and God takes his words and blesses them with results as Peter challenges the crowd “repent and be baptized every one of you”.  No sugar coating here.  Just straight truth right in their face.  Jesus is the way to salvation.  Peter preaches it.  And “about three thousand souls” respond to that message.

Not a bad days work eh?  Peter has led people to understand the reality of Jesus life and death.  He has shown them the power of the Cross.  And now there are 3000 new Christ Follower’s in the mix.  What happens next is the example of the way the church should function.  Peter has grown the flock by a sizeable number.  Here is what scripture teaches us happened:  “They devoted themselves to the apostles

–       Teaching

–       Fellowship

–       The breaking of bread

–       Prayers

Here are the four key things that need to be part of the church.  It began with devotion to the teaching – we need to be devoted to biblical teaching from our leaders.  That means we listen, learn and follow.  But there are four key actions that happen here.  The Christ Follower’s were learning about God’s Word and truth.  They needed to be together in fellowship.  They were breaking bread together and sharing life.  And they were devoted to prayer – communicating with God consistently and continually.  Scripture tells us a few other things were happening:

–       “many wonders

–       All things in common

–       Glad and generous hearts

–       Praising God

–       Having favor with all the people

Good things were happening.  God was blessing and the Holy Spirit was moving.  And the result – “the Lord added to their number day by day whose who were being saved”.  This was not a static community – but a vibrant and growing group.  They were alive and really living their faith.  There was no showmanship or pretending to be Christ Follower’s.  They were living it moment by moment and day by day.  What would churches in America look like today if we taught truth, lived together as the early church did, and witnessed God’s power come alive as we obeyed?

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