THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CHURCH
I. TEXTUAL THOUGHTS
1. Acts1:8- Jesus gave the order of the gospel preaching.
2. Isaiah 2:3- The law to go forth from Jerusalem.
3. Matthew28:18-19- The great commission.
4. Acts 8:1-5- Persecution caused the gospel to spread.
5. Acts 11:1-21- The gospel spreads to the gentiles.
II. MAIN THEME- The church began at Jerusalem and grew strong through the apostles' teaching and fellowship of the church. Persecution caused Christians to scatter from Jerusalem and spread the church into Judea and Samaria. Finally the gospel went to the gentiles, and to all nations.
1. The church grew strong at Jerusalem.
a. The gospel was preached daily, Acts 2:42-47, 4:20.
b. Thousands were added, Acts 2:41, 4:4, 5:14.
c. The church cared for the helpless, Acts2:44-45, 4:32-37, Galatians 2:10.
2. The church had problems.
a. Ananias and Sapphira tried to deceive, Acts 5:1-11.
b. The apostles were imprisoned, Acts5:17-29.
c. Some Christians murmured against other Christians, Acts 6:1.
d. Stephen was stoned, Acts 6:8-15, 7:51-60.
e. There were doctrinal problems, Acts 11:2-3, 15:1-11.
3. God used the problems to cause the church to grow.
a. The death of Ananias and Sapphira caused healthy respect for God's
power, Acts 5:11-14.
b. Persecution caused the church to spread, Acts 8:1-4.
c. Murmuring led to the appointment of seven servants, Acts 6:3-8.
d. Doctrinal problems led to the exaltation of God's grace, Acts 15:6-11.
III. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS
1. The gospel was preached to the whole world in the first century, and we have
the opportunity to carry the gospel to all people in our generation,
Matthew 28:18-19, Colossians 1:6,23.
2. The church should accept suffering as a way to grow. When problems come,
look for opportunities to teach, 1 Pet 1:5-9, 13-15, James 1:2-4, Acts 14:19-22.
3. The word of God is the seed that produces the church, and it is our role to
preach the message, Romans 1:16, 10:14-15, 1 Peter 1:22-25.
4. The church should love and respect the apostles teaching, Acts 2:42, Jude 3,
IV. MEMORY VERSE - ACTS 2:42-47.