Acts 2: 42-47 -“And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
They continued stedfastly in:
1. Doctrine – “teachings” This church taught the doctrine of the apostles and continued teaching others the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To whom are you teaching the beloved story of what Jesus has done for mankind? Who are you instructing in the ways of God and pushing to a closer walk with this Savior?
2. Fellowship – “to share.” Not only did this church in the book of acts teach others the doctrine of Christ but they shared with one another their personal walk with God. All of us as part of God’s church have one thing in common and that is the Holy Spirit. This common denominator in the life of a believer is what brings unity among the people of God and establishes a holy fellowship and harmonization in the service of the Lord. Let me ask you, to whom do you have close fellowship with? Do you find yourself communing with God’s people or giving your time do activities with your “old clic’?
Can I challenge you today to find a prayer partner or a mentor that will help you toward a closer walk with Christ.
3. Breaking of bread – (Communion) this is something that many Christians do not deem as important. “Why do we have to eat those nasty unleavened crackers and wash it down with like half a sip of grape juice?”
Communion is important not only because it is one of two ordinances that God gave the New Testament church, but it also keeps fresh in our minds the brutal yet willing sacrifice that Christ endured for our freedom.
4. Prayer. A church that prays together, stays together. Believers that come together in a spirit of prayer and communion with God will begin to see the Lord work in miraculous ways just like He did at Pentecost. But it is not only important to pray with your church but to pray for your church.
I challenge you to listen to your prayers. Who do you pray the most for? Do you find yourself praying selfishly or constantly lifting up others to the Lord? Do you pray in generality or specifically? The more specific we are in lifting up our brothers and sisters in Christ the more specific God’s answer will be. We will start to see God’s hand moving in our church in not only the big things but in the small, mundane things of the Christian life.
5. Resources. God is given us the wonderful privilege to either right now or one day be the provider for our families. This places a huge responsibility on our shoulders for how we handle the resources that God gives to us. But what about giving our money and resources to the church? Does God really need our money? I think you all know the answer to that. God owns The cattle on 1000 hills, he doesn’t need additional provision to get his job done. He simply asked us to give to the church because he wants YOU! Giving is not about the gift, but the giver.
How are you managing the resources God has given you today? Are you easily a giver, or are you a taker and a keeper? Whatever the answer give it to God today. I promise he can do more with it than what you think you can do.
6. Worship – This church came together in a spirit of worship and praise before God. Many of us when we think of worship, we dwell primarily on music. When music is just one aspect of the vast subject of worship. Our worship to God is simply an act of magnifying Him in all of His power and glory! The result of true worship is seeing more of who He is, and acting on it. When we get a glimpse into the almighty presence of God, things in us begin to change. Are you dwelling in an attitude of worship today? Are your words and actions lifting the banner of God high for all the world to see?
7. Impact – There is no doubt that this first church, through the power of the Holy Spirit, was making a HUGE impact on the world around it. Verse 47 tells us, “…And the Lord added unto the church daily such as should be saved.” WOW! What an impact! People were flocking to Christ, simply because they saw something special was happening in the lives of these so called believers. Can I remind you that the same Holy Spirit that was baptized into the heart of believers in the early church and at Pentecost, is the same Holy Spirit that resides in your heart the moment you receive Christ as Savior! God is not done with His Church, He still desires His Church to impact their “Jerusalem,” “Judaea” and the “uttermost parts of the world.” How is your church impacting your community? Do you know the best way you can measure their impact? It is how well YOU are doing at impacting your community for Christ. That is the true measure of your churches impact.
Which of these areas do you know could use improvement? Ask God to help you fulfill exactly what He wants in your personal role in the body of Christ.