Summary: This sermon admonishes believers to examine where they are in their walk with God as well as encourages them to get back to basics and start being about the Fathers business.
You should all be familiar with the scripture,
(Hebrew 13:8) Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.
You should know this one too,
(Malachi 3:6a) For I am the LORD, I change not;
We all know that things are different in the Church;
Different even from what it was only 20 years ago,
But what’s different?
Paul said in (1st Cor. 2:4) And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
Why don’t we see Holy Ghost Power?
Power like they saw in the first century church.
After Jesus’ ascension to heaven He promised that the disciples would receive power from on high.
Luke 24:49 And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.
In essence He promised them a promotion (as it were)
• He promised that they would be lifted up from their present
position and condition.
• He promised that they would be elevated to a new level of
• He promised that they would receive power.
• He promised that they would do many mighty and wonderful works in His name.
In Mark 16:17-18 Jesus said;
17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
In John 14:12 Jesus said;
12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
The Lord promised a promotion to those who believe and would be obedient to what he had taught.
Let’s take a look at our subject text
41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. 42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46 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, 47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
This passage describes 7 important characteristics of the spirit-filled Church.
1.) Apostles’ Teaching (v. 42a) The early believers were discipled and nourished in the Word taught by the apostles,
These early believers in the New Testament were taught and nourished by the same men that walked and talked and learned directly from the master himself.
Some of these teachings later became our NT scriptures.
They were a WORD CENTERED CHURCH.
2.) Fellowship (v. 42b) the disciples not only developed a vertical relationship to God,
But also nourished others horizontally, a warm, honest, open, healing, redeeming fellowship based upon a common life together in Christ.
They were friends to the people in their fellowship, they helped one another, they fed one another spiritually, they spent time together, like a family.
They pursued the fellowship of Christ and the Holy Spirit between and among believers.
They were a FELLOWSHIPPING CHURCH
3.) Breaking of Bread (vv. 42c,46) This common expression in Acts and the early church seems to have a threefold dimension:
a. The initial beginning of a common meal
b. The moment of sharing an agape meal
c. And the Lord’s Supper itself
They shared meals together, they took communion together, and they partook bread together in love.
These folks did almost everything together, and should serve as a model for the church of today.
4.) Prayer (v. 42d; cf. 1:14; 4:23-31) In the early church, prayer was clearly a high priority and an integral part of their life together.
In Acts, where there is much prayer…..There is much activity of the Holy Spirit.
And where there is much activity of the Holy Spirit…. there is much prayer.
These were a praying people; they stayed in constant communication with the Lord.
In Phil. 4:6-7 they taught the church at Philippi Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.