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Acts 02_37-47 - The Life Of The Church

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The Life Of The Church

Acts 2:37-47 "37Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. 40And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. 41Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. 42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46And 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, 47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

Introduction

1.       We see much of what the church is about in this chapter

2.       We see how that Christ is exalted through preaching of Peter.

a.       His approval by God (accreditation) 2:22

b.      His crucifixion. 2:23

c.       His resurrection. 2:24-32

d.      His exaltation. 2:33-36

3.       Exposition of the Scriptures 2:17-21; 25-28; 33-36

a.       Joel 2:28-32 - The Spirit has come from the Son. 2:17-21, 33

b.      Psalm 16:8-11 - The Son has been raised by the Father. 2:25-28

c.       Psalm 110 - The Father has exalted the Son 2:33-36

4.       This powerful sermon was shot with the double barrels of the witness of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. It had wonderful results.

5.       We see the life of the church in the following verses.

The Life Of The Church

1.       Evangelizing Sinners
Acts 2:37-41 "37Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. 40And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. 41Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls."
Acts 2:47 "47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

a.       We must speak to sinners about the Savior. (2:37-40)

                                                               i.      In the name of Jesus Christ

                                                             ii.      Acts 4:10-12 "10Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 11This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. 12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

                                                            iii.      Verse 38 is a stumbling block for many. Religions have hung their whole religion upon this one verse.

1.       First notice the context before and after

2.       Before: Acts 2:21 "21And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved."

3.       After: Acts 2:41 "41Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls."

4.       What was Peter saying: Repent is synonymous with salvation

a.       There question was not the same found in Acts 16

b.      This is the same crowd that rejected the Christ.

c.       Repent = “a change of mind”

d.      Baptism would visibly separate them from the nation that had rejected and crucified the Lord of glory.

5.       Be saved and then be baptized

6.       Well these are those of Israel who refused to be baptized unto the Messiah and were responsible for slaying the Savior…

7.       Mark 16:15-16 "15And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned."

8.       What a danger for those who attempt to force all scripture through the misinterpretation of one or two verses.

9.       There is still not better defense against those confused about water baptism than 1 Corinthians 1:14-17 and 15:1-6

10.   Make no mistake about it, baptism should always follow salvation.

b.      We must see sinners come to the Savior.
Acts 2:41 "41Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls."
Acts 2:47 "47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

                                                               i.      Daily: they were constantly spreading the good news

                                                             ii.      New saints can be good at bring others to Christ.

                                                            iii.      Oprel

                                                           iv.      Friend over in Europe was having success soul winning in the same area that a veteran had seen none.

1.       Come to find out that the veteran was a hyper-Calvinist and not highly motivated.

2.       My friend said, “It’s amazing that you get more fish by putting your net into the water.”

                                                             v.      The saints were daily sharing their faith.

2.       Embrace The Spirit
2:17, 33, 38

a.       Welcome the Spirit as promise.
Acts 2:17 "17And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:"
Acts 2:33 "33Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear."

                                                               i.      They welcomed the Holy Ghost.

                                                             ii.      Some people do not want the Holy Spirit to come and to fill them, because they know if He came somethings would have to go.

                                                            iii.      1 Thessalonians 5:19 "19Quench not the Spirit."

1.       Chapel Service: people getting right, gone late, then comes the Pharisee’s testimony

                                                           iv.      Ephesians 4:29-31 "29Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:"

1.       We can grieve the precious spirit of God by what we say and by wrong attitudes

2.       We need to be careful not to hurt him.

3.       When I was younger I was on a church van on an activity with some others and my Dad and one of the other parents. I was singing a silly song that some of the other children had sung. It wasn’t bad music or bad words, but my friend said your Dad looked back with a disappoint look. That hurt me, as I never wanted to grieve him. That was the last time that I ever sang that silly song.

b.      Welcome the Spirit as a gift.
Acts 2:38b “and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

                                                               i.      What a precious gift we receive at the moment of salvation

                                                             ii.      It is important that new converts understand when  they receive the Holy Spirit

                                                            iii.      Ephesians 1:13 "13In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,"

                                                           iv.      It is important that people understand the implications of that powerful truth

                                                             v.      1 Corinthians 3:16-17 "16Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."

                                                           vi.      1 Corinthians 6:19-20 "19What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s."

                                                          vii.      That is the kind of transforming truth where you see people reach in their shirt pocket and throw their cigarettes in the trash can.

3.       Edify The Saints
Acts 2:42-47 "42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46And 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, 47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

a.       A teaching church.
Acts 2:42 "42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

                                                               i.      They remained steadfast in the apostles doctrine

                                                             ii.      Persisted in and continued in…. 2 Peter 3:18 "18But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen."

                                                            iii.      They were discipled and built up in the faith through sound doctrine and application

b.      A loving church.
Acts 2:42 "42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

                                                               i.      Fellowship is key to keeping someone in church and promoting future growth

                                                             ii.      Best learning comes from observation. You can’t observe what you do not see.

                                                            iii.      Breaking bread: Some try to make this the Lord’s Table. Communion is one of the two ordinances of the church (along with baptism).

                                                           iv.      This may be included, but it is certainly not the total scope. (See verse 46)

                                                             v.      Christ ate with his disciples and with publicans and sinners.

                                                           vi.      It gives a certain understanding of love and acceptance that is important.

                                                          vii.      the church of the Laodiceans: Revelation 3:20 "20Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me."

c.       A praying church.
Acts 2:42-43 "42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles."

                                                               i.      The new believers learned to pray.

                                                             ii.       “fear came upon every soul”: a holy reverence

                                                            iii.      God did great works in answer to the prayers of His people in the book of Acts.

                                                           iv.      God still answers prayers and does what only He can do for His glory.

d.      A giving church.
Acts 2:44-45 "44And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need."

                                                               i.      All that believed: this is talking about meeting the needs of their brethren in Christ.

                                                             ii.      Note: Jesus had prophesied of the coming judgment upon Jerusalem…what would be the point of keeping property?

                                                            iii.      This is not communism

1.       They sold their possessions individually and willingly.

2.       Acts 5:4 "4Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God."

3.       They gave to meet an immediate need. 1 John 3:17 "17But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?"

4.       Contrasted with Communism

a.       Communism is the state taking and dividing up. There is nothing voluntary about it. (taking what doesn’t belong to you is stealing)

b.      There is no joy of giving under the oppression of communism.

                                                           iv.      It is a joy to give to meet the need immediate need of a brother or sister in Christ.

                                                             v.      New converts need to be taught the joy of giving the right way with the right heart.

e.      A worshipping church.
Acts 2:46-47 "46And 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, 47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved."

                                                               i.      One accord…singleness of heart

1.       Fellowship

a.       house to house

b.      no clicks

c.       no “us four and no more”

2.       Gladness

                                                             ii.      Praising God: God was the center of their worship and at the heart of all they did.

                                                            iii.      The Lord added…it is the Lord that gives the increase.

Conclusion

1.       We must evangelize the lost in the power of the Holy Spirit

2.       We must see converts baptized and established into the fellowship of believers

3.       We must edify these saints for the glory of God.

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