In Acts 2:42-47, we see the characteristics of the early New Testament church. In verse 42, the Bible says, that they “continued steadfastly” in the doctrine and fellowship that the Apostles have taught them! It is much to our shame that we have left this idea of continuing in the foundation laid for the early New Testament church. How often are we guilty of adding to or taking from doctrine by our traditions and what seems to be the “popular” practice of our time?
The early church was also one of fellowship! The Bible says that they continued steadfastly in fellowship, breaking of bread, and in prayer! They new that in order to have the power of God in their lives, that they must be a people of prayer! They fellowshipped together, they ate together, and the prayed together! We have a hard time being around each other for two hours on Sunday morning, that we neglect to come back Sunday evening! The early Christians believed together, “and had all things common.”
What happens to a church when we are all on the same page? All have the same heartbeat? And all have the same mind?! Here we see the example of the early church; they sold everything they had, and parted them to all men that had as they had need! They were genuinely concerned for one another! They also had “gladness and singleness of heart!” There is a joy in serving our Lord together, and because of their bond, and single heartbeat, “the Lord added to the church daily!” Souls were being saved and lives were being changed!
I want to challenge each of us to continue steadfastly in sound doctrine, and fellowship one with another! Instead of striving and fighting with our brother or sister in Christ, let’s share one heartbeat! A heartbeat to reach the world with the Gospel, and the Lord will bless and grow our church, and we can know real JOY!