Grace Church of The Nazarene 
Portage, Indiana

 

 

   Grace Church of The Nazarene 
Portage, Indiana

 

 

 

Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost

September 13, 2020

 

 

A Place to Belong

 

 

Scripture:  Acts 2:42-47

 

Introduction:  Acts 2:41-47 offers us a brief snapshot of the early church.  In fact, this is the very earliest picture of what Christianity looked like in the beginning.  The first and last verses of this passage tell us the church began with 3000 conversions in one day (v. 41); and verse 47 says that people were being saved daily and added to the church.  The verses in between describe what happens when God breaks loose in a group of ordinary men and women. This is not religion or ritual but the reality of Christ at work in the among his people.

With this passage as the foundation, let’s look together at four marks of a great church.

 

 

1.  Solid grounding in the Word of God  (v. 42a)

 

            How to get a “grip” on the Bible…

 

    • Hear

 

    • Read

 

    • Study

 

    • Meditate

 

    • Memorize

 

    • Apply

 

“How firm a foundation ye saints of the Lord is laid for your faith in his excellent Word.  What more can he say than to you he hath said, to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?”  (John Rippon, 1787).

 

 

2.  Caring relationships with other believers  (v. 42b, 46) and practically ministered to others  (v. 44, 45)

 

            the fellowship

 

            all together

 

            in community

 

            sold their possessions

 

            gave to everyone who had a need

 

 

3.  Vital, life-transforming worship  (v. 42, 46, 47)

 

            active worship

 

            uplifting worship

 

attractive worship

 

 

4.  Seeing the power of God through prayer  (v. 42, 43, 47)

 

            When these things are present, these results are sure to follow…

 

            healthy on the inside

            attractive on the outside

            filled with joy

            continual conversions

            presence of God everywhere