- I have a more in depth overview called Acts 1-5: The Early Days of the Church
- This is the first episode in a series covering the book of Acts and the history of the Church
- When is the last time you heard a sermon on the book of Acts or the history of the Church?
- Usually you learn the history of organizations you are part of:
- Fraternal Organizations
- The country you live in
- Small groups are a way to foster intimacy within large congregations. They also function as a way to disciple members and help spiritual children grow into spiritual adults.
- I'm not going to name the book that we used because it's simply a personal opinion that I didn't like it. While I disagree with some of the things the authors said, I don't think there was anything "dangerous" about the book that would warrant me calling it out publicly.
- The book of Acts is the history of the Church. It tells what happened after Christ was crucified—what did they do, how did they try to spread the gospel, what kind of structure did they set up, and what was the expectation of the disciples to follow through with the mission Christ had given them.
- The promise and deliverance of the Holy Spirit is key and leads the book.
- There were more than just the 12 disciples follow Christ before the crucifixion; the 12 we generally think of were the inner circle
- In the upper room there were 120 disciples!
- At this point "the 12" has become "the 11" since Judas Iscariot betrayed Christ
- 12 has Biblical significance, which is probably why they felt the need to replace Judas
- 12 Tribes of Israel
- 12 represents God's people or a nation
- They pray over the decision
Speaking in tongues
The disciples begin speaking in languages other than their own. Diverse people in the crowd miraculously hear the words in their native language. There are many controversial opinions about speaking tongues. The most important thing to remember (in my opinion) about tongues, is given in 1 Corinthians 14. You should not be speaking in tongues if no one understands it. Someone should be able to interpret it.
To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 1 Corinthians 12:10 KJV
Behavior of the Church
- The Church is a group of people, not a building
- They met daily—it was not a once a week occasion
- They met in each other's homes and shared meals together.
- It is mentioned 4 times that they meet daily with in the first 5 chapters (Acts 2:46-47; 3:2; 5:42)
- I googled "the significance of sharing a meal" expecting to see information on Jewish culture of Biblical references, instead I found secular sources proclaiming the importance of sharing meals. From child development sites expressing the importance of family meals to mental health sites expressing the effect of eating with others on our mental health.
- People sold their land and other possessions, then gave every thing they had to help the group as a whole. The objective was to make sure everyone was taken care of. Behaving in this manner helped established a familial community.
- Most people would give the clothes off their back for their child, but would you do the same for your neighbor? A stranger you just met? That's the type of community Christ called us to build.
References and Footnotes
- Ree Hughes. ““. PSALMS to God. May 12, 2020Acts 1-5: The Early Days of the Church
- Carolyn Taketa. "Why Small Groups". Christianity Today. June 25, 2012
- "Search: The Significance of Sharing a Meal". Google; visited March 9, 2020