One group of people who desperately need to hear good news today are the lost souls who are appalled at the path this country has chosen. Millions of our citizens still have enough sense to realize that government dependency, the sacrifice of the unborn, and the self-centered redefinition of morality are driving us toward disaster.
Before we can help these people, however, churches need to study the pattern of Acts 2:42-47 and recapture the “life together” qualities of that first group of Spirit-filled believers: devoted to learning, shared life, prayer, group worship, home fellowship, and selflessly helping people in need.
Does that describe your own congregation? Does it describe your own participation in a congregation? You won’t otherwise experience the deep sense of awe, miraculous signs and wonders, great joy, and goodwill of all the people those believers enjoyed.
Your congregation also will not otherwise experience the power of v.47 — “And each day the Lord added to their group those who were being saved.”
Many pastors yearn to see their congregations filled with this kind of life and see large numbers of lost souls rescued by Jesus. Many church members wish they were experiencing a deep sense of awe, miraculous signs and wonders, great joy, and the goodwill of all the people. A few of us wish we were seeing more of our brothers and sisters selflessly helping people in need.
A congregation isn’t being what God intends a church to be if it’s missing any of these traits. An individual Christian isn’t being what God intends a believer to be if he is withholding himself from the fellowship of believers.
Those of us who have heard God’s heart about the poor and oppressed cannot do justice on his behalf if we are not rooted and grounded in the “life together” of an Acts 2 kind of congregation. More of us would be involved in church if we could find a congregation living out that kind of vital faith.
If you can’t find a church like that, start one. The darkness is gathering and soon there won’t be enough light left to work out in the field. People are in desperate need all around us — and there is no hope but the one we have been given.