Read Acts 2:42-47
We all know the reality that in any vehicle, it is meant to function with 4 wheels. And if any one wheel suffers, gets out of balance, it gets damaged or a tire falls off, it effects the car as a whole, often dramatically.
Luke begins with highlighting what is often called the 4-marks of the church.
1. The apostles teaching – key essentials of the faith
2. Fellowship or the common life of those who follow Jesus
3. Breaking of Bread – sharing in Communion / Remembering Christ’s death and resurrection
4. Prayer The invitation for all of us is to take God’s grace and truth for a spin and see what it will do.
And to realize that the vehicle for God’s grace is the church – that’s where it is meant to happen. Where the Kingdom of God becomes tangible…in the church. Not in isolation, but in community. One anotherness, not individualism, but together.
NT Wright says that most scholars agree that these 4 pillars are meant to go together. That you can’t separate them, or leave one without damaging the whole.
1. Notice and reflect on what stood out for you and what God put on your heart through all the different aspects of worship during the service. Press into what God is saying to you and where He is challenging you currently.
2. Recall the 4 key elements of the church: devotion to the apostles teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread, prayer. What is God saying to you personally around these right now? Our church? The global Church? Where do you notice internal tension? Is there something you need to do?
3. We are all missing each other these days even though we continue to meet over zoom. How can you encourage someone else this week? Is there someone God keeps bringing to mind? Follow through on a spontaneous thought to encourage someone else in our church and/or our larger community.
Have you ever driven a car when one wheel is out of balance? It ruins the enjoyment of the whole drive doesn’t it? Worse yet, have you ever been in a vehicle when you lose a wheel?
My uncle tells a story of driving down the highway and their wheel zinging past them at 110 km per hr. The results can be catstrophic. Not just damage the drive, but many lives.
So if the church is the vehicle of God’s grace, when people take it for a spin, how is their experience? How is your experience?
What is that saying to you?
The first word in this text is the word devoted...
What is the connection between the word devoted and how these four things are lived out in our lives?
I encourage us to keep grappling with this text and hear what the Spirit is saying to us individually, and us corporately as a church.