Power + Persecution

The shape of the church has dramatically changed. It feels like everything we thought about life, spirituality, and church has been altered or brought into question. And in the west, the Gospel of Jesus has often been replaced for an “American Gospel” fashioned in the form of one’s political allegiance rendering the church irrelevant. What is the future of the church? How do we return to God’s design for His Church? If we are going to answer these questions we must go back to the first followers of Jesus and rediscover what the church was intended to be?  And how this mostly Jewish Jerusalem-based community became a multi-ethnic international movement that changed the world as we know it.  Join us for our series out of the Book of Acts as we look back at how the church began to discover what it really means for us to be the church today.

Teaching Notes

How do we become a church with lasting impact?

 

  • Peter & John had eyes to see those God put along their PATH. Acts 3:1-10

 

Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.”  Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong.

Acts 3:6-7

 

 

Miracle MOMENTS often happen in the MUNDANE moments of life.

 

 

  • Peter & John shifted the focus off THEMSELVES & onto JESUS.   Acts 3:11-26

 

You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.

Acts 3:15-16

 

The point of life is to point people to JESUS, the author of LIFE.

 

 

  • Peter & John immediately experienced OPPOSITION. Acts 4:1-4

 

The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people.  They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people, proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead.  They seized Peter and John and, because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day.

Acts 4:1-3

 

Safety is not a Biblical VALUE but has become an American IDOL.

 

  • Peter & John responded with unflinching BOLDNESS for Jesus. Acts 4:5-22

 

“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.

Acts 4:12

 

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus

Acts 4:13

 

 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

Acts 4:19-20

 

Live for God’s APPROVAL above all else.

  

The Believers Prayer:

 

  1. Look UP – God’s SOVEREIGNTY [Acts 4:23-24]

 

 

  1. Zoom OUT – God’s PROVIDENCE [Acts 4:25-28]

 

 

  1. Move FORWARD – Give BOLDNESS [Acts 4:29-31]

 

Scripture

  • Acts 3
  • Acts 4
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More from Future Church

The shape of the church has dramatically changed. And in the west, the Gospel of Jesus has often been replaced for an “American Gospel” fashioned in the form of one’s political allegiance rendering the church irrelevant. What is the future of the church? How do we return to God’s design for His church? If we are going to answer these questions we must go back to the first followers of Jesus and rediscover what the church was intended to be. Join us for a new series out of the Book of Acts.