Characteristics of The Early Church

  1. Unity of the Spirit: The Early Church where in Unity, even when the Holy Spirit came in Act 2, scripture said they where gathered in on Accord. The place of unity is important in the church today, we must learn from the early it. When the early church where in unity, The power of God came and everyone was filled with the Holy Spirit, everyone was awe at the many signs and wonders performed by the apostles.
  2. The early Church was not only in Unity, they where birthed in the power of the Spirit: the Spirit’s power was part of its ongoing experience. It was this power that enabled the Church to do mighty things.The miraculous is a hallmark of the witness of the Church throughout the book of Acts and the other epistles.
  3. Giving generously: This is the third feature of life in the early Church. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had a need.Part of this generosity finds its impetus in the depth of fellowship that existed between the early Christians.These verses provide a fascinating insight into the early Church. There was a strong sense of community: “The believers were together and had everything in common.”At the same time, that depth of community did not extend to communal living – they still retained property: “They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had a need.”The kind of sacrificial generosity described here features throughout Acts and the epistles.
  4. Unspeakable joy: the Church was joyful both in worship and fellowship: “Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people,” (Acts 2:45-46).A ‘party’ might seem too irreligious to describe life in the early Church. However, these verses describe a very happy bunch of people who clearly enjoyed being together and worshipping God. If you are uncomfortable with ‘party’ then think ‘joyful’. Meetings in the early Church were joyful occasions.This kind of joyful fellowship and worship is found all over the New Testament. Paul’s letter to the Philippians, in particular, is bursting with joy even though he was in prison when he wrote it.
  5. Reaching the lost: The early Church was an evangelistic Church. “And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” The Church was evangelistic! It reached out to the lost world.Notice how Luke describes the evangelistic witness of the Church. Firstly, it was Jesus who was working through his Church. Secondly, people were being saved on a daily basis.Thirdly, those being saved were added to their number. Evangelism was only complete when the new believers were added to the Church.This picture of the Church found in Acts 2:42-47 is not a complete picture. The Church was still in its earliest days. In later decades, revelation from the Holy Spirit enabled Church leaders like Peter, John and Paul, to develop and deepen the Church’s understanding of what the Church is.Nevertheless, Acts 2 introduces us to the broad themes and practices that shaped the Church of the first century and have continued to shape the Church in her most effective moments in history.

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