“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.”
In Acts 2, we see a picture of what our hearts long for relationally within the body of believers. This passage paints a beautiful picture of the community life of be- lievers in the early church. There can be a temptation to become disillusioned when we imagine these first believers doing life together in such a beautiful way. However, throughout the New Testament, the church needed to be reminded of how to behave within community. Just like church communities today, the early church was full of flaws because it was full of people. Sometimes it is hard to continue to hope for the best and believe the best about the company of people Christ is redeeming around you. It’s also daunting when you think about the difficulty of living like the early Church in a time and culture when we are overly busy and superficially connected
to one another. There are several observations from this text that should encourage us because these examples are not hard to understand, though they may require
some discipline to pursue. One of our hopes as a church is that we would reflect the healthy parts of the New Testament church and, in so doing, that we would reflect the glory of Christ in the Church. Our mission for community groups at our church is that we would pursue one another, so that Jesus is seen, and disciples are made.
Pursue One Another
The believers were together. This seems so simple, but you get the picture
that they were not only working alongside one another to accomplish things, they were present with one another — relationally knowing one another and spiritually growing as they devoted themselves to the apostle’s teachings. They were witnesses not only to the life of Jesus, but the lives of one another. Both of these things were important to their health as they sought to live out their new faith. Their spiritual re- lationship with God was not disconnected from their relationships with one another. Their gladness spilled over from worship and praise with one another to sharing meals and burdens. They were together and this required intentional pursuit. It still requires intentional pursuit and cultivation. Our hope is that we would be engaged together in similar ways by doing the following.
- Worship – Our gathered time of worship and teaching is so important that it is done in community. We are not only meeting with the Lord through song, preaching, communion, and prayer, but through the fellowship of the saints.
- Sharing meals – Everyone makes time for eating. You can redeem your meal time by spending it with your family, or with others. They were not only in the