Summary: The apostles were faced with a new problem, but they applied Biblical principles to solve it. It may have been new ground, but are the problems we face ever really new?
13 Principles from Acts 6:1-7 for responding to problems that arise.
1) Wherever people gather, there will be trouble. V1
-predictable trouble based on transient nature of the group
Il) Fisticuffs on the Sunday a classmate from seminary candidated at a church.
Il) Easter Egg hunt, people protecting their kids
2) Always respond to trouble caused by the flesh in a spiritual way.
-our flesh can think of many ways we may have responded to this complaint
-defensiveness is of the flesh; prayerful and Biblical solutions are of the Spirit
Il) example of Jesus, apostles
3) Biblical principles are the blueprints for our process.
-duplicating God’s character is our goal
-this passage a great example
-these guys didn’t even have the New Testament yet!!
4) The first priority of the church is proclamation of the truth for life change. V2
-apostles wanted to stick to their mission
IL) “leave behind, abandon” in v2
Il) “”stick to, adhere to” in v4
-the church needs to keep those called to proclamation and prayer free from ministry overload.
PP Acts 1:8
5) The tyranny of the urgent must not be allowed to dictate priorities.
-Satan can use emergencies to distract us from the main goal
Il) Jesus’ response to people lining up for healing in Mark 1:35-38
6) All believers are called to be servants.
-three uses of diakovia, vv1, 2, 4
PP Mark 9:35
7) People who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit are equipped to provide solutions v3
-the apostles had no doubt the believers were equipped to handle this problem.
8) Ministry in the church promotes character before competence
-qualifications for deacons based on inner transformation, not outward ability
Il) qualifications for elders and deacons in I Timothy and Titus
-tasks can be learned, character requires Spirit-initiated change
9) Expansion of ministry requires more people, not more ministry for the few.
-delegation according to the gifts the Spirit gives.
Il) Moses and the advice from his father-in-law in Exodus 18:12-24
Il) “Men, we are people of limited resources” Pastor Dale Burker of Fullerton EFC
10) Physical ministry is important because it demonstrates the truth in life.
-they took care of the problem which threatened to destroy unity.
Il) the early church was causing a great stir in Jerusalem
11) The church is to be characterized by giving.
-canceling the daily distribution was not an option
-that’s the history of the early church
-God is a giver by His nature
Il) 40 years in the wilderness, sending Jesus
12) Shepherds are ultimately responsible for all ministry.
-the congregation selected deacons based on qualifications set by their shepherds, and the apostles approved and commissioned them to the task.
-they did not merely “wash their hands” of the problem
Il) every jet has it’s own maintenance crew, and a crew chief who is ultimately responsible for the work of his crew.
13) The manifestation of God’s character in the church is a powerful evangelistic tool.
-priests getting saved even though they were already being fed from sacrifices
-they lost their jobs, most likely.
-this is a common postscript to these passages in Acts.
PP Matthew 5:16