We saw last week how the prayers we pray show the God we believe in. When we pray as if God isn’t big enough to change our lives, when we pray as if God is as scared as we are, when we pray believing that God is taken by surprise, then our God is not the God of the Christian Church. The God these early believers in Acts prayed to cared about their situation and could help them with it.
Sometimes we pray as if God is happy to save us but who does care about how we live. We just want a dollar’s worth of Christianity, a dollar’s worth of faith, a dollar’s worth of God. But if our God is big enough to plan all of history, we should want more of Him than just a taste. If our God is big enough to give us His Son, then we should want Him to have everything we have and everything we are.
That’s the attitude of the church in Acts 4:32f. They have prayed for boldness (4:29) and God has given it to them (4:31). They have received a gift from God, “great grace was upon them all” (4:33). We may talk about God’s grace in such generally ways that we don’t even know what we mean. But here, God’s grace is shown in concrete ways, and we are expected to want to live in this grace too. So, we need to:
- Recognise the Evidence of Grace (4:32-33)
- Plan for the Result of Grace (4:34-35)
- Follow the Example of Grace (4:36-5:2)
Over the last few weeks, we’ve seen how boldness is a sign that we have been with Jesus (4:13). That’s how we receive God’s grace, by being with Jesus. But what does that grace look like?
Sunday 5th August 2018
- What does God’s grace make us (4:33-34)? ________________ & ________________
- The church’s generosity came from being of one ____________ & ____________ (4:33).
- Was this Communism (4:34, 5:4)? Yes/No
- Is my money my money? Yes/No
- Should I be generous to unbelievers (Galatians 6:10)? Yes/No
- Who are 1st, 2nd, & 3rd priorities (1 Tm 5:4, 1 Jn 3:16-18)? Family/Church/Others
- What are deacons (Acts 6:1-6)?
- How can I plan to be generous?
- Do good actions always come from good hearts (5:1-3)? Yes/No
- Which example of generosity should motivate us (Romans 8:32)?
- A question I have:
- A truth to share:
- How I should live: