Change that Lasts
Give God thanks today for your journey into faith, and for all those people he used to lead you there.
Read Acts 2:37-47
 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”  Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off-for all whom the Lord our God will call.”  With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”  Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.  They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.  Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles.  All the believers were together and had everything in common.  They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.  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 favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat charge and promise did Peter give the people?
Here we see a completely different Peter from the one who had earlier denied any association with Jesus. Since that all-time low, events had transformed him. The final moments of his brilliantly crafted speech were confident and extremely effective. Clearly affected by what they were hearing, the listeners asked how to respond. What a wonderful opportunity, and one that Peter grasped with enthusiasm. It was time to recognize the true identity of Jesus, accept rescue from the ultimate consequences of independence and wrongdoing, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (38-40). It was a difficult offer to reject in the light of such a powerful explanation of Scripture; about 3,000 people accepted. For the disciples, the time of waiting was over. The gift Jesus had promised was here and considerable change was coming to the early Christian community (42). The way the early followers began to flesh out their faith speaks volumes (43-46). A community of love was being fashioned, producing a climate of learning, friendship and sharing, breaking bread and prayer. Distinctive and attractive, these values should still be the hallmarks of Christian community today.
How practical and possible is it to live those early Christian values? How could your church begin to do it?
Lord, I want my church to show the world that we are truly a community of love. Help us, I pray.
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