Acts 2:40–47 (NKJV)
It appears that the Bible does not record everything that Peter preached that day, but the effectiveness of the message is not in doubt. On this day of the first Pentecostal outpouring, three thousand people were saved and began to follow Christ. The powerful witness of Acts 1:8 had come, and the world would never be the same. In this passage lies the results of that outpouring in the first days of the New Testament church as they began to live out this promise.
40 And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” 41 Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. 42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. 44 Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, 45 and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.
46 So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.
- Doctrine – Based on Old Testament theology, fulfilled in Jesus Christ, and led by the Holy Spirit, the church was taught by the apostles and shown the Way of Salvation.
- Fellowship – Koinonia, or going together, became the norm for this group. They walked together in the Spirit, ate together, prayed together, had all things in common, gave to those in need.
- Faith – The disciples saw tremendous miracles and signs done among them, simply believing that the promises of Christ were true and receiving according to their faith.
- Fear and Reverence – The fear spoken of here is more of an awe of God rather than fearfulness. They revered the God they served, with whom they had relationship, and worshipped Him, rather than simply observing a ritual.
- Worship – The early church went to church (temple) daily, not forsaking the worship of Yahweh, but also including the role of Christ as the Messiah. While Gentiles were not required to fulfill the legal requirements of the the Jews, those who were Jews continued their observances, in essence becoming the first “Messianic Jews.”
- Favor and Growth – The New Testament church was blessed in many ways. While persecution would come as well, the blessings of God, favor with the people, and miraculous growth all occurred in this early stage of life.
This model is one that each of us in the Christian church of today should seek to emulate. Restore the fear of God, live in the power of the Spirit, and walk in fellowship with fellow Christians. This will bring revival and conversion to the community and Christ will be glorified!