Summary: "Normal" means "conforming to a standard". The Standard for our churches ought to be the Lord Jesus Christ. The church at Jerusalem gives us an excellent blueprint for how a church ought to be.
God wants every church to be a “normal” church. What is normal? Webster’s dictionary says, “conforming to a standard.” God has given the standard for His church. When we compare the church in the book of Acts with our churches today, we fall so far short of God’s standard. There are so few normal or ideal churches today! Since the church is not normal, it fails to grow and win the lost to Christ! So, Satan leads many astray! Note four things a normal church will be:
I. A GROWING CHURCH—47
A. Growth in Attention—Acts 2:42. They continued in the Apostles’ doctrine. The Apostles’ doctrine was true to the Word of God.
B. Growth in Attendance—Acts 2:46. They were daily in the Temple. The church meant more to them than anything.
C. Growth in Affection—Acts 2:45. They sold what they had and shared it with others. This love came from God to do this.
D. Growth in Attitude—Acts 5:29. Rather obey God than obey man! They had one main desire—TO PLEASE GOD!!
II. A GOING CHURCH—42
A. People could not stop them—Romans 1:16. Paul was not ashamed of the gospel. He did not allow criticism to stop him.
C. Persecution could not stop them—Acts 20:24. Paul could say that despite his sufferings, none of these discouraged him.
D. Problems could not stop them—Acts 6:1-15. All threats and even being murdered could not make Stephen give up serving Christ.
III. A GLOWING CHURCH—Acts 17:6
A. The Power—Acts 11:26. It was the world that called Christ’s followers Christians. They saw Christ “in them”.
B. The Prayer—Acts 4:13. Peter and John, though ignorant, showed the beauty of Christ in their lives. This came because of prayer.
IV. A GROANING CHURCH—Isaiah 66:8
A. Cry for the lost—Acts 20:31. Paul had a love for lost souls, which mad him weep daily.
B. Concern for the lost—Romans 8:26. The best praying, and the most needed praying is to intercede for the lost. Standing between God and man in sincere, dedicated prayer.
Only a “normal” church will reach the lost for Christ. Many pf the world’s problems today are to be blamed upon the church. Since we do not meet the standard of a normal church many churches are dying and even closing their doors. To be a normal church we must have “normal Christians”. Christians who live lives like those in the book of Acts. Normal Christians will make a normal church and a normal church will change its world.