Summary: It’s important we remember the things we have learned in our study of the FIRST CHURCHES if we are to be the church God has called us to be as we minister in His name here in Beaufort County.
Pastor Allan Kircher
“The End of the Beginning!”
Paul was a great missionary because he was willing to be one every single day of his life.
• No matter where he was.
• Or what he was going through.
• Every Christian in this room is a material witness to what God is doing in their lives.
Now, I don't know if you've been counting,
been studying/Acts together for almost a year
Today is the last message.
I bet you were beginning/wonder if we'd ever finish/series!
Eight years of my collegiate career, I found the most difficult part of my studies was the beginning.
In all those hundreds of papers to write
It was the beginning/start/initial thought or commitment.
Once that was achieved the rest all fell in place.
So it is with every message.
Sometimes it takes several days to figure out where the Lord intends to take his Word that week.
Once the Lord reveals it to me, the message flows like a living fountain.
I get excited, my heart races in anticipation/coming words.
So it is with our ten month study on the book of Acts.
I mean the most difficult part was to begin.
For the Lord to speak to each of us of how we to begin a journey.
once we get over that initial commitment
That initial surrendering of your life
There’s no stopping us from being a vibrant and productive witness for the kingdom of God.
Now we are in the midst of our walk.
• We have heard the principles of an Acts church.
• It’s up to us now to follow where/Lord commands/us to go.
In this year we’ve learned:
• Powerful testimonies/Peter/Paul/Barnabas, Philip, James.
• Power of prayer.
• Peter's miraculous release from his prison cell in the Antonia Fortress in answer to the prayers of the church?
Ethiopian Eunuch/Philip taught us about the kind of attitudes we need in order to be successful as personal evangelists.
Peter's experience with Cornelius, that Roman centurion who wanted to become a Christian...helped us to see the evils of prejudice.
It reminded us that we are all equally in need of God's gracious love-and are all equally the focus of it!
It is a foundational biblical truth that obedience brings God’s blessing, disobedience His chastening.
o In Luke 11:28, Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hear the word of God, and observe it.”
o James reveals that it is the “effectual doer” who “shall be blessed in what he does” James 1:25.
Paul had desired for many years to visit Rome.
Acts 19:21 he said, “After I have been there [Jerusalem], I must also see Rome.”
He repeatedly expressed that desire to the Roman Christians.
At long last, the time had come for God to grant His faithful servant’s desire.
After two years in a Roman prison
a terrifying two-week-long storm at sea, and his fourth shipwreck
Paul would at last see Rome.
It has been a long time for us also, I pray for God’s to grant His faithful church entrance into our new journey.
I sincerely believe that our future as a church will depend on how well we as its members remember all that we have learned in this past year.
In my first sermon in Acts, I told you that many churches these days fail to live up to their potential.
In essence they don't pattern themselves after God's intent for the local church as seen in the original design.
Instead they operate according to the latest trend or gimmick.
They copy what other churches are doing
When this happens churches eventually become less and less like the New Testament model and more and more like the fallen world around them.
Remember? In February I told you it's the same sort of thing that happens when you use a photostat machine and copy a copy of a copy of a copy.
o Eventually you get a very blurred image-after a while you can no longer read the writing.
o So, fellow DISCIPLES of Jesus Christ, Who loved the church and gave Himself for it-hear me on this!
It’s important we remember the things we have learned in our study of the FIRST CHURCHES if we are to be the church God has called us to be as we minister in His name here in Beaufort County.
• Don't get me wrong.
• I'm not saying we'll never try new things
• We have and will continue to do so.
• But we must never stray from the principles of church structure that are found in the New Testament model.
Otherwise we will be in danger of forgetting those timeless tasks God has called us-His church-to fulfill.