And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many signs and wonders were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Dear Household of Faith,
A large number of new believers changed the dynamics of relationships. The apostles were no longer dealing only with the 120 (1:15) who had known Jesus well, but in some cases, people who had come from foreign lands and had only heard about Jesus on the day of Pentecost.
Guidance (v. 42-43). The apostles were handpicked by Jesus to be his close companions and to go out on his behalf (Mark 3:13-15). He had promised that the Holy Spirit would teach them “all things” and remind them of the teachings of Jesus (John 14:26). It was to the apostles that the new believers now turned for instruction. In addition, they spent time in fellowship, prayer, and “the breaking of bread.” In those days, the Lord’s supper was part of a meal, as it had been when the Lord instituted it during the Passover meal. While this was going on, God was doing wonders through the apostles.
Generosity (v. 44-46). The believers displayed a degree of selflessness that set them apart from the rest of the population. They shared their possessions with one another liberally, so that all needs were met. While it may not be advisable for Christians to sell their belongings and share the proceeds with others, we can all learn from the first church. They did not hold on to material things. They had something of much greater value – Christ and the community of believers.
Growth (v. 47). The power demonstrated in the wonders and signs performed through the apostles, the attractive selflessness of the believers and the continued proclamation of the gospel brought more people to the faith daily. It is ironic that today, people are lured into the church with promises of instant wealth. The early Christians attracted people by giving their wealth away. Are we missing something?
Your Loving Pastor Chris.