The Phenomena of the First Churches

In history, it is true that the church was first born from the event of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit that took place in the upper room in Jerusalem. After that first Pentecost, the church spontaneously and naturally expressed the values and characters that are taught by Jesus during his three years on earth. What are the values and characters of Jesus?

First, an obedient and faithful heart. Faithfulness is continuous obedience. An example is the ministry of Phillip in the times of the first churches. When other apostles went to relatively comfortable places, Phillip went to Samaria to reach out to a community that was rejected by the Jews for generations. He decided to obey and wholeheartedly did what the Holy Spirit had commanded him and many people received Christ all over Samaria. After finishing his ministry in Samaria, the Holy Spirit directed him to walk from Jerusalem to Gaza, a track that almost no one passed. But because of His obedience, it led him to the encounter and repentance of an Ethiopian eunuch. Through that eunuch, the gospel was introduced in Ethiopia. The expansion of the gospel of the Kingdom can only happen when there are disciples who are obedient and faithful to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Second, an open heart to new believers. The Bible writes that Barnabas was a kind man who was full of faith. His kindness was revealed when he visited Saul in Tarsus after his repentance. Barnabas had faith that the Lord is able to erase the past of any sinner, as long as he repents wholeheartedly. Barnabas believed that Saul had experienced that truth while other apostles were still skeptical about Saul. From Tarsus, he brought Saul with him to minister in Antioch for a year before he eventually recommended Saul to become an apostle. The result was Paul became one of the most phenomenal apostles.

Third, an open heart to all nations and tribes, and to not differentiate between them. When the first churches were born, Peter was challenged by the Lord to eat the unclean food. Through that incident, Peter understood that in the Lord’s eyes, there is no such thing as an “unclean” or a “clean” nation. The Lord loves all nations and He longs for all to be saved.

The church in the end time, in this third Pentecost era. needs to move with the same passion as the first churches. Only through that, we are able to fulfill the Lord’s desire for this generation. We will see phenomena of the first churches repeat again in this present time such as: young people loving the Lord by showing their obedience and faithfulness in the movement, like Phillip; servants of God who are anointed by the Lord to be ministers to restore and rise up new believers who will also eventually become ministers in the movement, like Barnabas with Paul; and churches who are open minded and become the outreach of all kinds of people, not differentiating nations, ethnicities or tribes. Through all of these things, the Great Commission will reach its peak and rapture of the church will come soon. Hallelujah, Amen. God bless.

   Sourse: Article from GBI Gatot Subroto, Jakarta