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Nick
Sep 1st 2014, 02:02 PM
The Fellowship of the Believers42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A42-49&version=ESV#fen-ESV-26981a)] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Why does this not apply today? Rarely do you see this. Is "church" a noun or a verb?

Walls
Sep 1st 2014, 02:51 PM
The Fellowship of the Believers42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A42-49&version=ESV#fen-ESV-26981a)] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Why does this not apply today? Rarely do you see this. Is "church" a noun or a verb?

An interesting question.

The Apostles in Jerusalem had been trained by our Lord Jesus for 3.5 years. So the activities of the primitive Church in Jerusalem must have been a result of this teaching and training. So, as to the teaching of the Apostle's doctrine, prayer and breaking of bread must be the way of all Churches, even today.

But the situation in Jerusalem regarding food, clothing and lodging was not normal. Because the Savior had come to Israel at a time of crisis, they were at a very low point morally. Sickness, sin and demon possession were the order of the day. This was surely the result of a combination of 1,500 years of Law breaking (see Deuteronomy 28), the two dispersions (north and south) and the Pharisees' leadership. According to the Law, all manner of curses were upon them and thus the great poverty in Judah. This poverty only worsened when the Messiah was rejected and slaughtered at the request of the people of the Land. We see this ongoing poverty later in Acts Chapter 7, and when Paul urges the Corinthian Church concerning supplying Jerusalem in 2nd Corinthians Chapter 8, probably more than twenty years after the rejection of the Messiah.

But later, in 2nd Thessalonians 3:12 and 1st Timothy 5:8, Paul seems to indicate that this sharing of goods was not to be the order of things. It is:

"Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread."

and....

"But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."

The testimony of Christians among the nations is that they are to be diligent workers, stay within their means, and provide for themselves and their families first. This does not mean that they are not to be liberal with their giving, but it indicates that their testimony should be that God provides when they do their part.

I understand Church ("Ekklessia" in the Greek) is a noun. It means "the gathering of the called-out ones".

ChangedByHim
Sep 1st 2014, 09:55 PM
Socio-economic needs have changed, especially here in the west, but otherwise, we try to follow the model at my church.

IMINXTC
Sep 2nd 2014, 02:53 AM
Going a step further I believe even the communal structure might be increasingly beneficial these days, and would like to see more of it, providing that each community is strongly based on a clear statement of faith and purpose, and outreach being the essential mission (I've seen and been involved with a very few, and was quite impressed).

But if the economy tanks in the fashion that it certainly could, it should not be each man or family to his own, but to the well-being of the body as a whole.

Aviyah
Sep 2nd 2014, 05:22 AM
Why does this not apply today?

We (the western world) have exponentially more and greater opportunities for productivity than the early church. An automobile alone would have solved a lot of the issues which would necessitate the model in Acts 2. I'd imagine that persecuted communities of our brothers/sisters would benefit more from it than we who are temporarily spoiled. It's not right or wrong - just different.

BroRog
Sep 2nd 2014, 02:20 PM
The Fellowship of the Believers42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A42-49&version=ESV#fen-ESV-26981a)] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Why does this not apply today? Rarely do you see this. Is "church" a noun or a verb? I'm hoping there are a few churches left who devote themselves to the teaching of Jesus and the apostles. And I hope that when full blown persecution comes to America, Christians will support each other this way.

Dmcal57
Sep 2nd 2014, 02:29 PM
I'm hoping there are a few churches left who devote themselves to the teaching of Jesus and the apostles. And I hope that when full blown persecution comes to America, Christians will support each other this way.


I hope so too BroRog, but regarding this, also take note of the following Scripture:

"Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction."

“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other,11and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people."

We can only hope and pray that God will give us a spirit that would not love life so much as to shrink away from death, while keeping the testimony of Jesus and t he word of God.

Old man
Sep 2nd 2014, 02:40 PM
... And I hope that when full blown persecution comes to America, Christians will support each other this way.
Perhaps you’ve touch on one of the reasons the early church was this way. If those early Christians were persecuted for their faith, many of them may have lost everything including family as they were rejected from the family because they converted to Christ. Those who did not have property and wealth would literally be left with nothing and those who did have property and wealth sold what they had to support those who did not. This was the teaching that John gave in 1 John 3:17 “But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?”

Slug1
Sep 2nd 2014, 03:24 PM
I hope so too BroRog, but regarding this, also take note of the following Scripture:

"Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction."

“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other,11and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people."

We can only hope and pray that God will give us a spirit that would not love life so much as to shrink away from death, while keeping the testimony of Jesus and t he word of God.Plus we have to discern the purpose of persecution as well. Back in the day, persecution was what pushed the disciples away from Jeruselam and actually go out into the world to spread the Gospel.

Lyndie
Sep 2nd 2014, 03:31 PM
Regarding the 'if he doesn't work he shouldn't eat'...where I live, jobs are very hard to come by right now. If you are lucky enough to find one, most don't pay much more than minimum. As for the op, I don't see much of this in the churches here. I have seen christians tell others to go on food stamps, find a shelter, etc. Heaven forbid they actually help. "I will pray for you." is easy, thinking that is doing something, because doing something else might actually require sacrifice on their part. God forbid they have to sacrifice their vacation to pay rent for a month for someone who is struggling.
I have also seen this 'they got themselves into this mess, they can get themselves out.' I'm really glad Jesus didn't think that way when He sacrificed His life for me. The only difference I see in the lives of christians around here where I live, according to their facebook posts and conversations I have had, is they sit in a church on Sunday. Otherwise, the vacations, cars, Iphones, shopping trips....looks just like the rest of the world. As you can see, I think the church does a horrible job of taking care of their own...and the world sees it. This problem has much to do with the falling away and the lack of new believers.

Old man
Sep 2nd 2014, 04:26 PM
Regarding the 'if he doesn't work he shouldn't eat'...where I live, jobs are very hard to come by right now. If you are lucky enough to find one, most don't pay much more than minimum. As for the op, I don't see much of this in the churches here. I have seen christians tell others to go on food stamps, find a shelter, etc. Heaven forbid they actually help. "I will pray for you." is easy, thinking that is doing something, because doing something else might actually require sacrifice on their part. God forbid they have to sacrifice their vacation to pay rent for a month for someone who is struggling.

James 2:14-16 “What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? (15) If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, (16) and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and be filled," and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? (17) Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

1 John 3:16-18 “We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. (17) But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? (18) Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.”

John 13:34-35 “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

In order for all men to know we are His disciples they have to see us loving one another in practical real life ways.


I have also seen this 'they got themselves into this mess, they can get themselves out.' …
I don’t remember the references right off hand but I seem to recall that in the OT God would sometimes punish the rebellious by bringing poverty upon them yet at the same time commanded those around them to provide for their brothers who were in need. With one hand He takes away but with the other gives back. You’re right we need to do better job of allowing God to use us as His other hand.

Slug1
Sep 2nd 2014, 07:50 PM
The Fellowship of the Believers42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A42-49&version=ESV#fen-ESV-26981a)] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Why does this not apply today? Rarely do you see this. Is "church" a noun or a verb? A thought... while "tithing" is not a term many will support while others do support... when ALL in any church gave freelly, be it offerings or outright tithing, there would be not much of a need to "sell" belongings. Instead, "GIVE" BACK to God of the provision received as God blesses us.

Seems those who have no provision as in the scriptures presented, they sold what they owned so they had something GIVE to the church Body. Those with provision... shouldn't they just GIVE of their earnings?

Lyndie
Sep 3rd 2014, 02:55 PM
James 2:14-16 “What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? (15) If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, (16) and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and be filled," and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? (17) Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

1 John 3:16-18 “We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. (17) But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? (18) Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.”

John 13:34-35 “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

In order for all men to know we are His disciples they have to see us loving one another in practical real life ways.


I don’t remember the references right off hand but I seem to recall that in the OT God would sometimes punish the rebellious by bringing poverty upon them yet at the same time commanded those around them to provide for their brothers who were in need. With one hand He takes away but with the other gives back. You’re right we need to do better job of allowing God to use us as His other hand.

In certain situations I think we need to use discernment. If someone is continuing to pile on debt knowing they can't pay for it, then going to the church for help that's one thing. But I feel if someone messed up and is repentant and trying to right their wrongs, we should help them get back on their feet.

Old man
Sep 3rd 2014, 03:11 PM
In certain situations I think we need to use discernment. If someone is continuing to pile on debt knowing they can't pay for it, then going to the church for help that's one thing. But I feel if someone messed up and is repentant and trying to right their wrongs, we should help them get back on their feet.

There is also a difference between someone who is piling on debt they "know they can not (will not) pay back and someone who piles on debt because they have never learned (been trained / discipled) how to manage and control their finances. In the later case they need to be discipled and trained and even perhaps helped financially to get them out of the hole they dug so they can get a handle on their situation having been trained how to manage their money in a Godly way they should be able to avoid the problem in the future and mature. The other case is simply fraud and theft and they should be held accountable for it.

grams
Sep 4th 2014, 09:54 AM
Things started to change in Acts 9;


4

And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?


And as time went on more things began to change.

Don't forget God turned from the Jews on to the Gentiles......!

Nick
Sep 6th 2014, 02:24 AM
A thought... while "tithing" is not a term many will support while others do support... when ALL in any church gave freelly, be it offerings or outright tithing, there would be not much of a need to "sell" belongings. Instead, "GIVE" BACK to God of the provision received as God blesses us.

Seems those who have no provision as in the scriptures presented, they sold what they owned so they had something GIVE to the church Body. Those with provision... shouldn't they just GIVE of their earnings?

What is the proper order of giving, to fellow believers in need or your family?

shepherdsword
Sep 6th 2014, 02:31 AM
What is the proper order of giving, to fellow believers in need or your family?

I would say family first but hopefully we are blessed where "either or" isn't choice we have to make...we can do both.

Slug1
Sep 8th 2014, 12:30 PM
What is the proper order of giving, to fellow believers in need or your family?God is always first. Since you are one flesh with your wife, family is always next, from there... as God moves you to gift others.

This is how I've always prioritize and encourage others to also prioritize...
God
Family
Ministry... all the good works of faith, which may include faithfully GIVING to the Body of Christ in the form of money, work, service, help(s), worship, etc.

But, the point in addressing your question is this, to even be a leader in the Body of Christ, the "family" must be in order so this shows us that BEFORE ministry can be done, the family HAS priority over the ministry.

That is why when there is a family crisis, a leader WILL step down until the crisis is over. They do this because the family is ALWAYS above the ministry. The ministry can be run by anyone and in a properly ordered Body of Christ, other leaders can step right up into the position of the leader that has to step down to deal with a family crisis.

Gotta go... will post more later.

Nick
Sep 9th 2014, 01:42 AM
If God is always first when it comes to giving how would you reconcile that with 1 Tim 5:8 (the verses Walls posted)? Or how about what Jesus said in Matt 15....

Matthew 15:1-6

Traditions and Commandments
15 Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, 2 “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat.” 3 He answered them, “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 5 But you say, ‘If anyone tells his father or his mother, “What you would have gained from me is given to God,”[a] 6 he need not honor his father.’ So for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word[b] of God.

OSAS 101
Sep 9th 2014, 12:30 PM
God is always first and we prove that by loving one another.
1 John 4:21; "And he gave us this command; Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister".
Giving to your family in need or a fellow Christian in need "is" putting God first.

Slug1
Sep 9th 2014, 01:01 PM
If God is always first when it comes to giving how would you reconcile that with 1 Tim 5:8 (the verses Walls posted)? Well, when a person has their family in order, then God will be first for all them as well.


Or how about what Jesus said in Matt 15....

Matthew 15:1-6

Traditions and Commandments
15 Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, 2 “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat.” 3 He answered them, “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 5 But you say, ‘If anyone tells his father or his mother, “What you would have gained from me is given to God,”[a] 6 he need not honor his father.’ So for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word[b] of God.Honoring you parent's isn't about a pecking order of who's first.

Nick
Sep 10th 2014, 03:35 PM
Well, when a person has their family in order, then God will be first for all them as well.

Honoring you parent's isn't about a pecking order of who's first.

Jesus is clearly talking about money in that passage and calling people/the Pharisees out on their hypocrisy when they are unwilling to provide for their parents because of their 'obligation' to give to the temple. It's like saying, "sorry mom and dad, can't help you out because I owe this money to God."

Boo
Sep 11th 2014, 10:16 AM
We in the Western World have a very tough time understanding the church as it was around the Mediterranean Sea. Their society, their culture, was reflected in their actions. There family units, their adherence to authority, their respect for their elders, etc.; all of those things are reflected in the way they acted in the early church.

We in the west still tend to take pride in individualism, personal accomplishments, recognition, and other prideful things. We attempt to take all the bible says without considering what the mind of the writer actually was trying to tell us. For the people in those first gatherings of Christians, their behavior was not odd or unusual. It was the norm in a society where they lived as part of the whole.

It is we "rugged individualists" who find that a difficult task. We don't want to DE-emphasize our individuality. We don't want to become less so that Christ can become more. We are too concerned with what we as individuals want. Phrases like "the greater good" is blasphemed by our media and our staunch politicians in a way that held no meaning for the first century Christians. FAMILY was the nature of that culture, and the first century church was all about a new and larger family. God gave us a new and larger family, but we still insist on being individuals taking care of ourselves.

When all of the new Christians came together to share what they had, it is simply the story of how that they recognize their new larger family members.

dan p
Jul 25th 2017, 06:42 PM
The Fellowship of the Believers

42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+2%3A42-49&version=ESV#fen-ESV-26981a)] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Why does this not apply today? Rarely do you see this. Is "church" a noun or a verb?


Hi nand the Greek word EKKLESIA is a feminine noun !!

But in verse Acts 2:47 , is says that " the LoRD was ADDING to the EKKLESIA / ASSEMBLY the ones being saved ,

But one Greek verb ADDING is in the Greek IMPERFECT TENSE , PASSIVE VOICE and in the Indicative Mood !!

The Indicative Mood means it is a FACT , what fact ?

The PASSIVE VOICE means Jesus is the one doing the ADDING , and not man !!

The IMPERFECT TENSE means meand the Jesus was addint to that assembly FROM Acts 2 - Acts 28 and then stopped , in other words Began and THEN STOPPED !!


The main reason Jesus STOPPED adding to this assembly , is because Israel was being set aside as Isa 6 , and Lukr 13:6-9 and Rom 11 :11 and 2 Cor 3:13-16 !!


The EKKLESIA / ASSEMBLY today is called the Body of Christ and has nothing to do with Israel !!

dan p