Jesus prayed for His disciples to be one. United in the cause of Christ as His church. There are so many things that divide our world today - race, gender, socio-economic status, but in God’s Church, we are called to be one. We are imperfect people. As we focus on Christ and love one another, then God is glorified and His Church grows. As we see needs and meet them, then lives are changed. Let’s work together to make a lasting impact for Jesus Christ in our families, church, and community. May we be one in His Church.
1. There are challenges to growth.
In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenstic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. Acts 6:1
- The Church is made up of imperfect people serving a perfect God.
- The Church addressed the problem and fixed it.
- Don’t be a part of the problem; be a part of the solution.
- There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to Him...and a person who stirs up conflict in the community. Proverbs 6:16-19
- Prioritize God and people.
2. Leadership in the church is marked by service.
Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them... Acts 6:3
- They organized the church in order to do greater ministry work.
- The goal was to grow people deeper in their relationship with God.
- So, Christ, Himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors, and teachers, to equip His people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up… Ephesians 4:11-12
- These were the first deacons in the Church.
3. God is not about division in His Church.
This proposal pleased the whole group. Acts 6:5
- There is a call to unity in God’s Church.
- My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in You… John 17:20-21
- There is more that unites us than divides us.
- We are called to love.
- Everyone will know you are My disciples, if you love one another. John 13:35
4. When ordinary people live out their faith God impacts the world.
So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly. Acts 6:7
- When more people served, the Church grew.
- God works through ordinary people - not just the apostles.
- God shines through you when you live for Him.
All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel. Acts 6:15