Focal Passage: Acts 2:41-47
Many things in life are greater than the sum of their parts. When the squares of a quilt are sewn together they create something far more beautiful than a collection of pieces of cloth. They combine their individual worth to form both an extraordinary work of art and a useful tool for staying warm on a cold night. In a far more significant way, the local church brings together people with a wide variety of gifts, ages and experiences to produce more for the glory of God than they ever could separately.
Unfortunately, most local churches advertise themselves according to their programs and properties. While the world may be impressed by these largely material characteristics, every true church demonstrates what God has done without a single program or property. He has taken a motley crew of sinners, who would never unify in the flesh, and made the one by the blood of Jesus.
The Day of Pentecost yielded 3,000 new believers who displayed their acceptance of the gospel by submitting to public believer’s baptism.
Unlike the false professors of modern easy believe-ism, these new Christians wanted more than meaningless membership and a passing fling with faith. They understood that the church consisted of people, not property. Consequently, they wanted to live the Christian life with each other throughout the week and not just on Sunday.
They worshipped, observed the Lord’s Supper and ate together. Their transformed hearts were seen most clearly in their willingness to sell their property and possessions to help each other.
As a spiritual body, they functioned like the human body and depended on the presence and purpose of each member for the proper functioning of the body (1 Corinthians 12:12-26).
As the church continually displayed the power of the gospel, God added people daily to the church. Although no one is saved by merely watching the church, the church’s activity can attract people to or repel them from the gospel. Are we trying to attract them with the world’s tools or a demonstration of the Spirit’s saving and unifying power?