Summary: God created us to belong to His family. • He created us for fellowship. • Fellowship and being part of the Family of God involves a choice. • You choose to belong.
Today I would like to look at families.
• What does a real model family look like?
• When you’re asked this question what comes to mind?
1. Leave it to Beaver (June and Ward)
2. Howard and Marian from (Happy Days)
• What do you think about when it comes to a role model for the family.
In today’s society, it seems that dysfunctional families are being viewed as the norm,
• And the reasons that they are dysfunctional now seem to be taken for granite and even expected.
• In fact the values that we started with are now viewed as out of the norm making them dysfunctional
• Because they are becoming so rare
There are families today with absent parents, single parents, step-parents.
• There are even “families” with 2 dads or 2 moms.
• Is it any wonder our society is in such deep trouble when the family unit is breaking down at such a rapid pace?
In today’s world Loneliness is so prevalent that people are paying others to listen to them!
• 30% of Americans say that they have experienced long periods of painful loneliness.
70% of Americans don’t know their neighbors.
• Internet chat rooms are booming.
• Bars are filled with lonely people looking for someone to listen.
Where is the family in all of this? Where is the togetherness?
The family that I want to look at today is a different sort of family
• A family that stays together, that shares together, that fellowships together.
• It’s what a true family should be.
• It’s the Family of God.
And this family is the cure for loneliness.
Because The truth is, we are family.
• Lexington Christian Church is a family.
• The Church of Christ is a family.
• Throughout the NT, we see family words like brothers (Used over 130x’s)
So what does this Biblical family look like?
• Or maybe a better question would be, what should it look like?
• There are a lot of churches out there that are anything but a Biblical family.
• The Passage that best describes what a Biblical family should look like is
ironically, also the one that tells us about the first Church family.
If you would please turn to Acts 2:40-47. Background
• Acts is an amazing book that’s full of incredible accounts of the powerful and miraculous working of God.
• It describes the beginnings of the church.
• It’s describes the birth oif the church/ the early years of the NT Church.
• And It’s also shows the shift from Judaism to Christianity.
These verses in Acts gives us a great model for our “family”.
• In Acts 1 Jesus ascends and the disciples wait for the Holy Spirit.
• In Acts 2, at Pentecost, the Holy Spirit comes powerfully upon them, and they speak in other languages and Peter stands up to preach.
We see in the verse 40
Ac 2:40 Peter urged all his listeners, “To Save themselves from this generation that has gone astray!”
• Today We to have to save ourselves
And because the people responded to what he was saying We are told in verse 41
Ac 2:41 Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church—about three thousand in all.
• This literally was the birth of the Church!
• And now, in the following verses we get a glimpse of how that church became a family.
What we see is that God’s family was serious about spiritual growth.
• They gathered together and devoted themselves to teaching and fellowship.
• This means they made it their main concern.
• When you devote yourself to something, you make it your number 1 priority.
• Their main concern was to learn from the apostles
• And to fellowship and to meet and interact with others.
We are also told that they broke bread together and prayed together.
• Isn’t this what families do?
• They eat together, / Hang out together/ Learn from each other / Pray together
• They interact together
It Sounds to me that from the very beginning they were Family / Members of God’s family.
• It wasn’t just a club that hung out together.
• It wasn’t just a monthly pot-luck dinner or greeting time in Church.
• There was a purpose for gathering.
• And that Purpose was organized fellowship.
But What is fellowship?
• Some might say it is eating out together or going to church.
• When we gather here for fellowship there is a purpose for it.
• We are seeking to build each other up and encourage each other.
Fellowship is loving each member of God’s family.
1Jn 4:21 And God himself has commanded that we must love not only him but our Christian brothers and sisters, too.