Bible Study from Calvary Chapel Newberg
with Tom Fuller
The First Church
Those first days of the new church must have been glorious. A new thing had been born - it was exciting, powerful, heady.
We as the church 2,000 years later have yearned to duplicate those early days of the church. How many times have you heard "well the 1st century church ?"
Unfortunately, we cannot duplicate what they had - but we can learn certain principals from it.
They "devoted themselves" to:
The Apostles doctrine: after salvation came the hunger for growth.
Fellowship and the breaking of bread: need for companionship
Prayers: urgency to commune not only with each other, but God in a new way
They spent time in corporate worship and private fellowship - more than just a collection on individuals now all saved - they became a family, a community.
Having all things in common - the new Christians, having come from far away, would no longer be welcome in the Jewish community. Apparently, as was needed, Christians who owned property would sell it or somehow donate it to help those in need.
"as every man had need" there were limits. Everyone did not sell everything. But IF the need arose, they were willing to part with their possessions for someone in need.
Should we do this today? No.
1- The was an extraordinary case (the displacement of Jews)
2 - None of the Apostles told them to do it
3 - No other church practiced it
4 - It doesn't work in the long term
God just wanted them to be willing to give.
The early church met both in organized groups (in the Temple) and in unorganized fellowship in various homes.
What do we learn?
Teaching = instruction
Not doctrine in the way we think of it today, but instruction in God's Word and His principals.
Fellowship = partnership
"To have something in common, participation, friendship"
This led to them having all things in common and when a need arose, the body took care of it.
Prayers = worship
Prosyookay - to wish towards God.
1 - We need to devote ourselves to teaching
Get into the Word and get into teaching on the Word
Learn about your faith, then grow deeper in it
2 - We need to love worship and prayer
We should be filled with awe at God's presence and His power
Create a backdrop of worship in your life - make talking to God natural.
3 - We need to partner with believers
Become part of someone elses life
Find needs, then fill them