Summary: Do you want your church to be like God’s church?
Four Characteristics of a Godly Church
Ask you what you might think a silly question—
Do you want this church to be like God’s church?
This question needs to be asked because the church of today is slipping.
Did you know that the United States is the third largest unchurched nation in the world? That North America is the only continent where Christianity is not growing. That more that 80 percent of all churches in the United States are plateaued or declining?
I believe that the reason from this decline is the lack of churches acting like God intended for them to act.
Lets look at the four characteristics of a Godly church so we know how to make this church what God wants it to be. And maybe it already is you judge.
First lets look at the scripture before the one we read so we know what is going on before that time.
Jesus had ascended. The Apostles stayed together and they drew lots to select another apostle to replace Judas. That was Matthias. Then the day of Pentecost came and they were filled with the Holy Spirit and were speaking in tongues and everyone understood in their own language. But the thing that I want you to see that leads into today’s scripture is what happens at Peter’s sermon. They heard his sermon and were pierced to the heart. And asked brethren what shall we do. And Peter answered in vs. 38 Repent and let each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.41: So then those who had received his word were baptized and there were added that day about three thousand souls. They had a great revival. New baby Christians. The excitement was high had to be something wonderful.Why is this important? What would in be like to add three thousand to this church today? And what do you do with that many people to continue in God’s work? What would God’s church look like?
Let’s see what makes God’s church.
I. God’s church is steady (steadfast)-AND.V42- continually devoting themselves (steadfastly persevered)(kjv-continued steadfastly)
Illustration; Have you ever had a person in your life who was a steady person seemed like he never changed. He was sure to do the same thing you were sure he or she was going to be the same. My Dad was like that. He was someone you knew you could count on he was always there always steady. I use to go fishing with him when I was younger and I knew he would always want to go. But it got to be a steady thing that if I went with him we wouldn’t catch any fish. The day before and the day after my dad would catch them but not if I went. He called me the jinx. But he would always go fishing with you regardless. He was steady person.
God’s church is steady there is four thing this scripture says it’s steady in:
a. Teaching. Apostles- can be doctrine
1.They believe in fixed truth- the doctrine of the cross never let the excitement of any person, place, or thing lead you away from that truth. Even the excitement of revival.
2. C.H. Spurgeon said, “If God does not save a man by truth he certainly will not save them by lies, and if the old gospel is not competent to work a revival, then we will do without the revival; we will keep to the old truth, anyhow, come what may!”
The church is not to drift from one momentary emotional out burst to the next, rather the church moves immediately to the task of teaching keeping itself straight about what it is and what it is to be about.
Back to verse.
b. Fellowship-word is “common”-A relationship between individuals, which involves a common interest, and a mutual active participation in that interest and each other.
1. They loved each other and continued to do so.
2. They talked with each other about God and they did not give up that talking.
3. They helped each other when they were in need and they continued helping each other.
4. They were true brothers and sisters and their fellowship was not broken.
c. They were steadfast in the breaking of bread-They were steadfast in this delightful ordinance, which we should never despise or underestimate.
We know this breaking of bread was more than an agape meal. It was a meal mixed with the Lord’s supper we can see that in 1corth.11:23-24. It wasn’t until later in church history that the two were separated.
d. They were steadfast in prayer- supplication, worship, to pray to God (Def.-to ask for humbly and earnestly, to knee; down)