A Great Church
And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. (43) And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. (44) And all that believed were together, and had all things common; (45) And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. (46) And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
We need to have a great church. I dont want an average church, I want a great church and it should be all of our desire to have a great church. A great church just does not happen but a great church is made. Let us look at the first church in Jerusalem to see what made a great church.
1. The continued in the doctrine.
They stayed in the word and did not deviate from the word.
We dont need to tire of the doctrine (instruction of the word). The doctrine refreshes
Deuteronomy 32:2 My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:
The doctrine sets free.
Romans 6:17-18 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. (18) Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
We are saved by doctrine.
1 Timothy 4:16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.
The doctrine gives us relationship.
2 John 1:9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
2. The ministry continues to teach.
2 Timothy 2:24-26 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, (25) In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; (26) And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
Ephesians 4:11-14 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: (13) Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (14) That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
3.A great church is one that has fellowship.
Get involved dont sit on the sidelines
2 Corinthians 8:4 Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.
We all have a responsibility to minister to one another.
Have fellowship with the saints not with the world.
Acts 2:46 and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
2 Corinthians 6:14-15 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (15) And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
Ephesians 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
We have fellowship with Jesus.
Philippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
1 John 1:2-3 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) (3) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
4.We continue in prayer and worship.
It was an ongoing activity.
Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Acts 2:46-47 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, (47) Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
Colossians 4:2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;
Luke 24:53 And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.
Hebrews 13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
Luke 18:1 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.
5.They were unified in purpose and plan and put their own ides aside.
There is always great danger when you have different people of diverse backgrounds to have division but we put self aside for the good of the kingdom of God.
Acts 2:44-45 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; (45) And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
Ephesians 4:3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
Psalms 133:1 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
We are instructed to
Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.