Summary: A Godly Heritage is so important. And a great family is a SAVED family, a SERVING family, and a SANCTIFIED family. Link included to formatted text version, handout, and PowerPoint Presentation.
A Great Family
Acts 18:1-3, 18-19, 24-26
It takes more than great programs to build a great church…we have a great program going on here, but it’s not enough.
It takes more than hard workers and sacrificial servants to build a great church…we have that and last week it saved the church over $20k on the new roof!
It takes more than big offerings…we have been blessed for our size to do as well as we do in tithes-for the local ministry, in missions-for around the world, and in special offerings we receive.
It takes more than a super staff working with the pastor, more than talented teachers, and more than dedicated deacons to build a great church.
It takes more than a great looking Pastor to build a great church…but you could always pray that someday you’ll have one!
It takes great people, great families, and great homes, to really make a great church. We ARE building a church here, but hopefully we are building it by building people, building families, and building our homes…if we do that, then together we will be building a great church as a by-product, and all to the glory of God!
We have a great example of this here in our text in the form of this couple, Aquila and Priscilla. I believe that God intended for the Christian life to be a family affair. The Bible teaches that it’s ideal for entire families to love and serve God together.
Philippian Jailer in Acts 16:31
And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.
[next few verses say that indeed happened!]
Family of John the Baptist
For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord…and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb.
And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:
And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying,
There you have it: father, mother, and son. Now it doesn’t happen automatically…God has no “grandchildren” as it were, only children…but the Bible is clear on the fact that God intends for it to be a family affair.
Paul’s protégé Timothy came from a Godly mother, who was raised by a Godly mother herself. My wife and I were both raised in a Godly heritage, and we want to pass it along to our children. It’s our job to train up children in “the way they SHOULD go.”
And in our text we see a married couple, worshipping and serving God together.
3 ingredients of a great family.
1. It must be a saved family
Allow me to reconstruct this story for you…this couple was living in Rome, Italy. The name Priscilla is a Roman name, and secular history tells us she was from a prominent family of nobility living in Rome. Aquila is a Jewish name. So we can see that a young Roman girl has married a young Jewish boy, and that was not acceptable in those days…a huge wave of anti-Semitism had swept that land in those days, and the Romans hated the Jews. The Emperor Claudius had just issued an edict expelling all Jews from Rome.
vv. 1-2 This was a family under pressure. It’s always hard to have to pick up and move, especially when it’s moving away from the place where you have grown up. But this couple wasn’t choosing to move, they were being forced to leave!
And they are an illustration for the 21st C. family of today…also under incredible pressure from without, and from within. Stress and tension are a huge part of the home today with the pressures of work, time, and finances we choose to live under.
And children enter the picture and the stress goes up, and more and more the older they get.
Ill.—here’s an eye-opener for all of us today: if you have a child or grandchild that is 14 today and beginning as a freshman in high school, here’s some things to expect by the time they graduate—
• 2/3rd’s of their class will have used drugs
• 1 in 5 will be an alcoholic
• 2 in 5 will have consumed 5 or more drinks at 1 sitting
• 20% will use tobacco daily
• 46% of babies born out of wedlock will be to kids their age
• 1/3rd of all abortions will be performed on girls their age
• ½ will be sexually active
• 2nd leading cause of death of kids their age at graduation will be suicide
We need a revival in the home…we need a revival of families that starts w/ moms and dads getting serious about serving God—families w/ a healthy fear of Satan having his way and thus a hearty fervency for drawing close to God and to one another.