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June 16, 2022 6:00 am
Pastor Rick teaches from the book of the Acts
The Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved. Commented on this time and time again. The Lord builds the church, not by might not by power, by my spirit. Jesus said in Matthew 1618, I will build my church. John 15 five you abides in me and I in him, bear much fruit without me you can do nothing.
Psalm 127 verse one. The Lord builds the house, and those who labor, labor in vain that is without the Lord doing this is cross reference radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of acts. Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about cross reference radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching, but for now let's join Pastor Rick in the book of acts chapter 2 as he continues his message. The foundation everyone wants pastors to stand up to the sheep until they are the sheep being stood up to I been preaching this for 30 years and doesn't seem to work, but it's the truth.
And it's something that we special you young teens because it comes natural to us to resist authority to all of us unless you got a pistol side makes a little harder but anyway I think about the Walmart guy pulled you over. Would you even pull over.
If the security got no but of a guy with Episcopal jewelry you you stop, doesn't make sense. You think that be the one I keep going from okay anyway fellowship is next. Well, they weren't separated by class queen and the other is the Greek word it's a word that's an idiom of the week it's difficult not for us from the for the Greek it's difficult to take this word and squeeze out of its meaning illustrated to get to it. But you just can't put it in the dictionary of input in the dictionary look up the word going and he initially said read the book of acts that would be a good way to find the word course that doesn't happen. Our coin in the runs deeper than mere friendship.
The church got the Lord as I want you to go to this church because you'll like every body there. John's Gospel letter in his first letter.
Chapter 1 verse three that you may have fellowship with us and truly our fellowship is with the father with his son Jesus Christ. That's fellowship that means friendship in spite of friendliness because of God's presence fellowship include serving together and pardoning one another but you can't pardon somebody if you're emotionally driven in life we do not pray. My emotions are my shepherd, I shall not pardon the Lord is my shepherd and I shall not want. He's going to take care of.
It is a two edge sword fellowship involves association and disassociation. Malachi Malachi dealing with you knowing it went right at the preschool corrupt but anyway he says then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve him discernment and now comes the breaking of bread and will come back to fellowship. Also I made some earlier comments on it may will so much to say but the breaking of bread.
This is different from the house to house, eating meals, breaking of bread that we read in verse 46 this is the communion table context gives us this assembling with the Lord present the one who died. That's the theme of this communion table that we know is the bread and the cup because of our sin. Christ doesn't let us forget it is not what you decide this you are a sinner saved by grace and I I want to use you to save other sinners who are not yet saved by grace what can be Christ instituted this meal when he took the bread, the loaf and he broke it and he handed out the pieces to his disciples in anticipation of this soon. Just hours away. If that is arrest his persecution in his crucifixion says that they all drank from the same cup and partook of the same loaf. This is communion. They all drank, they all partook first Corinthians 1016 the cup of blessing which we bless is it not the communion of the blood of Christ, the bread which we break is it not the communion of the body of Christ Jesus said shed for many shed for you is the commemoration and in the assembly.
Now I've I mentioned before in Ezekiel's millennial temple. There will be no blood sacrifices because Christ is paid that price. They will be commemorative sacrifices will that's what I'll communion table is this no blood sacrifice anymore. Christ is not offered up again once crucified and we rejoice in that we symbolize that we commemorated. We say to the world and to each other. This is a big deal.
Are we not going to forget it. I do not remember the Alamo. I mean think about it all in history, or they wanted to remember what the war crime that took place at the Alamo we forgetting they were so how much more is ours concerning salvation. Acts 20 verse seven on the first day of the week.
That is Sunday when the disciples came together to break bread. That's why we gather we follow this tradition of the apostles Paul ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until midnight really is anything to my point, except I wish I could go on to midnight and I just, you know, I know it's hard. I know when I go to this every time I prepare messages like Lord I just want to get the words down, you know, so that it is not long and I just can't get there and I don't that I've come to believe he doesn't want it. There so it takes a little effort to sit and listen to someone else speaking about God's word you parents know that avenues been trying to teach your kids certain things in an and you know they don't want to hear it used you just going on and on and on release. I got Scripture. The Lord's supper celebrated as a meal initially. Initially, they did sit down and it was a meal but because of abuses and then later persecution, but mainly because of the abuses of the New Testament church had to limit this to just the symbolism because people were coming into the church, gorging themselves and getting drunk in the church. I am amazed at the patience of the apostle Paul dealing with the Corinthians. What he did deal with them in patients as an example to communis to draw near you some verses, you can look it up.
Exodus 3530 Moses, take samples of Psalm 73 verse eight to not to communis to be a far off.
Ephesians 217. Matthew 1580s people draw near me with their mouths of the heart is far from insane. They worship me, man, how how what a heavy blow to ritualism your ritual means nothing. It's a relationship that counts, and there you know in chapter 2 Paul Singer no longer strangers. Now you been brought near to Christ. First Corinthians 1129 for he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner and drink and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. That's where they were just abusing the table: don't you get it is the presence of Christ is not just a time for you to to to just pick out the solemn event and if you have not reference you have a great liability flowing through your veins. Isaiah 12 64.
Great is the holy one of Israel in your midst, that's with the ark again with David was was God with them. The Shekinah of the presence of Christ the Shekinah that followed the Jew led the Jews in the wilderness that was what we call a theophany physical manifestation that God's chosen to use as an emblem of his presence.
And when he shows up in human form before the virgin birth. We call it a Christophe and he Yahweh in human form.
How many churchgoers would say that this verse.
Acts 242 is to be a priority of every believer and every church. How many churches are even aware of acts 242 that you shall continue steadfastly in the apostles doctrine fellowship and communion in prayer. How many cherry picked from that we do the prayer we do the communion we have the fellowship. The doctrine we massage, we move around we don't just take it as it is I don't know if they are understanding if they think that the church must evolve doctrine. The church is not involved doctrine behaviorally. The church can evolve.
I mean, there are certain things we can plan we do that little different, like the community we can change little things we have some space but not with doctrine, not with what we've been taught is a fact about God.
In fact, about we can have a church service at 11 o'clock we can have one at 9 o'clock so we had that right but we better be careful with all of them that were not leaning on our own understanding with seeking the Lord. We talked about you know Pastor directed that's what the shepherd does. He directs the sheep where we going next boss, that's what the sheep was I'm hungry where we going next we going to that pastor over that he leads me beside into green pastures. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside the still waters but I'm terrified of those rat white-water rapids. That's the idea.
Verse 43. Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.
Fear came upon every soul that's reverence versus irreverence.
Someone who uses Christ's name in vain is demonstrating how irreverent they are someone who makes a mockery of the things that Solomon Scripture that is irreverence.
I don't know. Do observers of the church today when they look at us.
Is there reference to the at least say well I don't believe that. But they do it right for what they believe or do they say they can even follow their own beliefs on this are critical things.
Second Chronicles to King Jehoshaphat instituting change read this so that he be present to the priest a Levi's. I want you to teach the word. So they taught in Judah and had the book of the law of Yahweh with them. They went throughout all the cities of Judah and taught the people and the fear of Yahweh fell on all the kingdoms of the lands that were around Judah that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat less attractive to me. I like some of that Lord, I would like to be part of a church that had that will find this respect in this matter, continue in acts five, 5X 511, acts 931 and acts 1917 fear came upon it was that reverence like these guys are in touch with God and of course there were those that were greatly irreverent that killed the Christians, of course, Stephen being the first. Today the church is more in fear of losing attendees than continuing steadfastly. If they have to change what the apostle said to keep people attending they will many churches I don't know why they don't just start calling themselves churches in Encino.
Harry's hang out or something or does anything but stop calling yourself a church. If you going to depart from the doctrine and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.
God establish these men I don't I go to speed the suppler so much more want to say I mean if you looking for church.
I on one hand I feel sorry for you I wouldn't want to trade places, but on the other hand, is a glorious opportunity to submit to God, to be led to say where do you want me and wait for him. He'll tell you. The light will turn on. That's it. And then the devil's coming and you should be ready. Should we want to raise go to get me you will of you are ready. It doesn't take much to be ready.
I should add that what is a take mainly to be ready to continue steadfastly in the apostles doctrine and fellowship in communion and prayer right here in our own Bible. God did this.
What he's doing to his disciples by the signs and wonders. He did it for Moses to Joshua when when Moses was going to heaven, and Josh was going to take the lead God that I'm going to strengthen Joshua in front of everybody. Elijah and Elisha after Elijah went up in the chair to five who he said can I have a double portion of whatever it is you're having, and he said if you see me go up you get it. He got God will do this with the two witnesses and hundred and 44,000 and he does it with us with the differences with us doesn't have a roll about our jacket and strike water and it parts for us as it did with Elisha.
Would God does a schism when have you stick to truth in the face of everything that is a miracle, evidently because there are those that don't. There does it turn tell you know what unchanging teams and I'm going back to the world we call them apostates. Is there called no one put a gun to their head made them department cries verse 44 now all who believed were together and had all things in common.
The early church evidently experimented with this idea of a common purpose, which is contribute to this common purpose. It was a high in a pure motive. It was a good thing that their hearts were looking in this direction, but it didn't work, and in fact lead to the death of two people who were part of this and failed to follow through with it. It was not called for by God doesn't make it a sin that they wanted to know they wanted to do something good and helpful and it did help some for a while.
It also cause problems for the apostles. It was almost a detour to take them from studying the word of God and being in prayer to being involved in helps ministry which nothing wrong with it helps miss you. But that was not there calling in the spirit made that clear and out a lot of good came out of that Philip will euphoric Stephen day it came out of that this event but it does seem it was more of an emotional charged event is not communism or socialism that's mandated they were ready to help, and people were contributing to this. It was one of the few possible flaws of the early church. The relatively minor and will when you look at acts chapter 4 verse 32, which revisits this, they were still doing it. They really don't do too much after Safar and Ananias struck dead and is the way it is. But what we read in verse 33 is and with great while while the multitude is involved in this helps ministry is a contrast between verse 32 and 33 of chapter 4 next in verse 33. It says that the apostles, it says, with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord and great grace was upon them all. So it says is everyone helping here the apostles the state doing what they're supposed to do. It was sticking with the word and things that took them from that word were to be shut down and will get that next chapter 6 well many coming back to verse 44.
This was voluntary, not compulsory. As I mentioned, acts chapter 5, Peter will say right out to Ananias and Sophia.
He says while it remained was it not your own.
That was what they promised to give to the church was willing to give all of this will us all and give it all to the church was sold the land they only gave some to the church they lied, and they were struck dead for this pretty heavy stuff would get to that in five but I will read this Petersons. While it remained was not your own and after it was sold, was it not in your own control. You could have done with it whatever you want until you pledged it to God.
Now it became a contract covenant and they were going around bragging and boasting in and they were dealt with severely.
Anyway, this communal pot because the first major problem when the Hellenistic Jews were not getting the apportioned the Jerusalem Jews were getting in abundance and so was the charge and that was a big problem. You are free to give to a ministry that will take care of the needs of others for you.
There's no sin and that we are free to give it yourself which are not free to do is say you going to give it and don't give it. That's where it starts to get a little sticky. Well anyway, verse 45 and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.
And I have commented on that.
The end of the apostles were initially the ones it oversaw the money for the goods but the end time not long after they said you know we were not here for this get somebody else from who were faithful in the body. And that's what they did. You can't devalue service.
Being a servant in the church.
The walls in the church you go to the kids ministry to scare discuss on the walls. I get a lot of somebody is is that you know and I were bridges that were the painters were always painting a bridge to go from one end of the other take about a year then they go back and do it again and it is Doing the same here.
Men's maintenance if we have the workers everything needs painting with the list always got something to be painted. Service and you coming to the witness nice and shiny displays like the Shekinah senior somebody is working don't undervalue serving verse 46 of continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity apartness was no fad. This is not everybody's doing, I would do it to. This was the outcome of their coming to Christ of seeing in this Scripture that their Messiah had come and died for them with one accord, because the leaders were united. This was a big deal to get them. First Corinthians 3, and the people are united around the real one I like Apollo's, but I like Peter and although I live on posted that I die for you in the temple of the Jewish Temple is fading away. The New Testament church begins there but will depart move away from their Jesus said to the woman at the well. The hour is coming now is when the true worshipers will worship the father in spirit and truth father seeking such to worship him. They will worship the father not in any particular place. I did go to that verse take more time. Anyway, this temple held fond memories for these men of Christ teaching their and ministering and they were not in a hurry to leave what's going to chase them out of their persecution. Persecution will squeeze them out that my mentioned the meals. These were actual dinners and fellowship. Christians are still doing this you invite people to your home and you go out together. The one thing I loved about the church in Manhattan. After every service.
There were all single animals. Everybody there but you go to almost any number of the good restaurants or diners then and youth that would be the church people that there will be all over the place and it was some of the highlights of the week that I so look forward to that. Now when you have family so you either invite people and you will take the whole family out to a restaurant's rule, with another whole family regularly. You may do it from time to time, the tips going to be bigger but anyway you we still do this simplicity of heart or singleness of heart.
The idea is it and complicate the faith they lift that for future authors to write many books that no one's going to ever read verse 47 and Woodward with the last verse I got so I have to get get to this praising God and having favor with all the people the Lord added to the church daily those who were being Saybrook have commented on this time and time again. The Lord builds the church, not by might not by power, by my spirit. Jesus said in Matthew 1618, I will build my church, John for 15 five you abides in me and I in him will bear much fruit without me you can do nothing.
Psalm 127 verse one. The Lord builds the house, and those who labor, labor in vain that is without the Lord doing it.
We are not a marketing agency. The church grows through nutrition, not addition.
That's how we build the church, not by human government power or wit gimmicks. We just the apostles doctrine. I think a lot of Christian Tristan them either doesn't know this verse exists. They don't understand it or fearfully, they don't believe they believe they can do better.
God is not going to entice people to a church.
May you never hear me say to somebody searching for church. I hope you come back. I hope you you know this going to be a church that is so far beyond me. That's God's work at my work is to not mess it up and I don't know why Christians don't get so here we are churches turning to tech firm to target new members more than 30,000 churches have signed up with Gucci LOL I couldn't find that it was an acronym for I could make up some things, but this is a small tech firm that utilizes personal data and online activities to target individuals who may be interested in a church message churches.
Message and potential membership. Glue says it seeks to reshape the way that the churches ministries and people connect with each other, which is become increasingly relevant as churches look for ways to boost numbers following declining attendance that has been exacerbated during pandemic. Anyway, the company explained in a recent Wall Street Journal report that it wants churches to be empowered with big data, I minimize the only one means of this to anyone.
Here's a smile sitting wrong with this that I mean I'm not saying this is a sin, but who needs the Holy Spirit who needs acts 242 Lisa continue steadfastly. These continues.
The goal is to target people in the same way that big brands like Amazon, Google and Netflix used that data to target consumers with goods and services will have goods. We have services and they are good, but I mean I give you a lot of my notes exists the spirit upon me. I mean, is this what that you they perceive the church to be with and fear came upon all of them because they couldn't get enough money from the church that they wanted, they charge you for this.
What you imagine. I'm taking your kind money and I'm going apply somebody who can get people to come in here because we can't do it. I don't know why, I mean younger, I would've been compounding the pulpit. I'm older now and warm and nothing scriptural in any of this. Not even the grounds of Scripture one G.
Campbell Morgan said about the church does these things. She has turned to all the lords and other Masters and has adopted other methods than the methods of Christ himself close with this verse from Zephaniah chapter 3, course of lamentation for the state of Israel is, and that time she has not obeyed his voice.
She is not receive correction. She is not trusted Yahweh is not drawn near to God Communion drew near to God not marketing agencies in Christ's name move you've been listening to cross reference radio daily radio ministry pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast. Today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply visit cross reference radio.com that's cross reference radio.com would also like to encourage you to subscribe to the cross reference radio podcast subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick, you can subscribe to cross reference radio.com. Simply search for cross reference radio your favorite podcast to the next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of acts right here on cross reference radio