Summary: It’s thrilling when people are helped and blessed by the hands of Christian people. But the ultimate priority and the consummate goal of all we do is the salvation of souls. The greatest thing that can happen here is when a person gives their life to
THE CHURCH OF THE HELPING HAND
Acts 9:32-41 - Peter traveled about the country, he went to visit the saints in Lydda. There he found a man named Aeneas, a paralytic who had been bedridden for eight years. "Aeneas," Peter said to him, "Jesus Christ heals you. Get up and take care of your mat." Immediately Aeneas got up. All those who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord.
in Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which, when translated, is Dorcas[a]), who was always doing good and helping the poor. About that time she became sick and died, and her body was washed and placed in an upstairs room. Lydda was near Joppa; so when the disciples heard that Peter was in Lydda, they sent two men to him and urged him, "Please come at once!"
Peter went with them, and when he arrived he was taken upstairs to the room. All the widows stood around him, crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them.
Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, "Tabitha, get up." She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. He took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called the believers and the widows and presented her to them alive.
God has been using Paul in a mighty way. The center of attention now turns to Simon Peter and I want you to see the marvelous magnificent preacher of Pentecost.
Remember the Lord said to Simon Peter, “You are Peter and Upon this Rock I will build my church. “ Peter makes the great confession and God is going to use Peter to usher in his Kingdom and to do some marvelous work
As unstable as Peter was – God is going to make a rock out of him. I am sure there were days when Peter thought, God cant use me!
Many people around Peter looked at his life, at his failures, inconsistencies, and wondered if God could ever do anything with him.
Paul said, “when I am weak – then I am made strong” God majors in building up the broken.
God has been moving mightily in Paul’s life. However when we come to Acts 10, there is a major breakthrough in the Gospel to the gentile world.
A door has open for the gentiles to be recipients of the Gospel God is going to use Peter as His divine appointment to reach out the gentile world.
Peter had some impediments in his life that God had to remove if Peter as going to have an unbiased – unprejudiced ministry.
God had to do a work in his life. Experience by experience – Day by day God prepares His people for what He has inshore for them.
When I look at Acts 9:32- 41, I see a ministry of the helping hand.
I want you to see that every Bible believing church has some undeniable characteristics.
You can call your church whatever you will, however the bottom line – Does the character and life of the church meet the mandate God has for it.
I. THE CHURCH IS A HUMAN MINISTRY:
The church is centered in people, interested in human beings, and cares about individuals and their needs.
Our text is filled with people: There is Aeneas, Dorcas, the Disciples, and the saints. Not faceless nonentities – but people with personalities, people with feelings, people with needs.
The world sees you as a number, you are a number on a computer somewhere and you are knowm primarily by your social security number. However in the New Testament, you study the life of Jesus and see how he was caught up with individuals. He called them by name: Martha, Mary, Zaccheius, Bartimaeaus, Peter, Andrew, John, and James.
When Jesus died on the cross – he died for Tom, Ed, Rick, John, Fred, Rose, Sharon, Janet, Miley, Wes, Kevin and Kaye, Faye, Beth and Jim, Palmer, Barbara, Arlene, Marline, Bill, Wilbur, Sharon etc:
The church is interested in all people:
The Devil game plan is to get us thinking about all thee masses so we do
not focus on the individual We win people one at a time. If we can’t
help individuals – we can’t help the masses.
I fear we lose our perspective: We do not exist so people will come in and help us – we are here to be a blessing to others --- one person at a timeWhy would God give us more if we do not take care of the one he sends our way.
We are interested in all kinds of people: