Summary: Sound Church equals Sound Believers
Acts 2:42, "They joined with the other believers and devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, sharing in the Lord’s Supper and in prayer."
An essential in every sound biblically based church will be the devotion to God’s Holy written Word. It is sound theology that leads to sound belief, and sound living together. You cannot not have a sound church without sound preaching of the Word. You cannot have a solid church without those who are passionately interested in searching the Scriptures themselves not just as a Preacher, but the whole congregation out to study the Word of God themselves in light of the Pastors message that Sunday! A sound church is one that presents the Word, but then applies that Word into its community allowing that message to absorb into the fabric of its existence. It was this that the early church did, more than likely its key to success, it took seriously doing not saying, listening and acting upon what it knew. The early Christians did not have the knowledge of the Scriptures, or the understanding level that we today possess. They did not have seminaries to attend, other than Jewish or Roman schools to attend, but none Christian seminaries as we have today. A sound church will teach the whole Word of God, historically and theologically but yet practically to today’s setting. You cannot have a sound church without sound preaching. It was this basis that built the early church, the preaching of the Word of God.
Acts 2:43, “A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders.”
Some have tried to discount the works of miracles in the ideal of another. To them I say that salvation is and of itself a miracle. Salvation while by grace is and of itself a work of healing. We are healed in a sense by Christ’s work on the Cross, our sins are forgiven, we are justified, and sanctified-God no longer remember our sins, but yet at the same time in the process of becoming like Him. This deep awe that they experienced is more like a total reverence. They understand that now life without Jesus was not worth living. They understand that a huge aching part of their heart wanted to believe in this Jesus, yet while crucifying Him was the answer they had to that aching, it was really this now that what they desired, salvation, and healing in the soul, not desiring to be dead spiritually anymore drowned in the passions of life, but in the newness of life. It was this awe of God this reverence of God that swept over them.
The next phrase ‘and all the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders’ has been used sadly by many commentators in the sense to make it seem as if God did not heal in this day and age. To them I say God is still in the work of healing, otherwise we would not be in the process of becoming like Christ who is the Master Healer in and of Himself, offering liberation from sin, but not freedom from our sinful nature. God offers in Christ a personal living relationship and a vibrant life, not bent upon expectations, rather driven by intimacy. If we say that God does not perform miracles then we are in fact denying the very existence of the work of Christ on the Cross. God is still performing miracles everyday, drawing people to Jesus Christ and the work of the Cross. That in and of itself is a miracle! So really the argument for the existence of miracles is based upon some fanciful idea that God does not do these things in this day and age. While many have claimed to have these abilities, many have proven false and shown to be false through medical examination. I feel honestly that salvation is healing, God justifies us by His blood, and God removes our sin from His memory, it is not that we will not sin and mess up daily, it is now that through Christ’s sacrifice that we can depend and rely upon the grace and work of that sacrifice to change us so that we will not make the same mistakes, if we are wiling to confess our dependence upon that very work that can and should change us everyday.
The early church here understood the importance of worshipping God. They were a worshipping community. As believers we are indwelled by the Spirit of God. We are a temple without boxes or buildings, the Church-the Body of Christ, God’s people are not bound within buildings but within the confines of the Body of Christ to attend church, to fellowship with one another. Let us worship God, and celebrate His name, calling on the name of the Lord, praising His Holy name for His goodness and His faithfulness endure forever. This is the mark of a sound biblically based church, one that worships God, is based upon His Word, and work will naturally in turn be motivated to worship God because of the miracles He is doing in there midst drawing people to Christ, and meeting every need everyday.