Peter made this confession saying that Jesus was the Christ, the son of the living God. Jesus responded saying Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
We read about the building of that church here in Acts. It wasn’t the best time in history to build the church. Things were falling apart. In 30-40 years the Jews would be out of their homeland and would not return until 1948. This generation seeing that is fading meaning that Jesus is coming soon.
We see fewer and fewer people being saved but God is still working. If Jesus could build a church in a one-world government of Rome he can still built it now. Not every building with a steeple will be called a church by Jesus. It’s not defined by windows and a pulpit but by the people. There must be faith in Jesus Christ and devotion and service to him. This is the only church that will be recognized in heaven. There are different denominations but the church of Jesus Christ is comprised of those who follow the precepts and principles of the Bible. Adwolfe Free Will Baptist doesn’t have all the answers. It’s not our way or no way. If a group claiming to be a church turns from God’s Word, regardless of how it looks to others it will not be recognized by the Lord. That’s why Jesus said not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. The church is built from the heart and soul out and Jesus is the builder. If he uses us, we are instruments and tools in his hand.
Acts 2:43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
This is a description of something being built, how it functioned and breathed. It follows structure and design. A person accepts Jesus Christ as Savior and the foundation is laid. How we build on that foundation is next. Step after step it is built. Jesus is continuing to work on us. We fit together as individuals to make a church. God blesses. I have the potential to be a blessing or a stumbling block to you. It depends on what I do with Jesus. You have that same potential.
The people were saved. They knew how to study the Word; they knew how to pray. They were Christian people. We have to work on this every day. We have adversaries on every hand. How do we make it? Jesus provides what we need to overcome. The people did for each other what God did for them. Has God ever not come through? He always does. He’s given us enough. He’s never too late. It’s not up to us to make it. God has never failed so let’s not shortchange him.
When you read about the early church you see they were alive and working and it was working for them. The times were worse than they are now. What made Christianity work and move forward was Jesus. God gave the design and the plan and then his blessing. We make it because the Father still gives the plan. A church that works sees things happen. You don’t jump from A to Z when you build. You don’t buy a property for your house and go stand on it all day long and say you can’t see the house. If you want the house built, you’ve got to build it. Surrender to Jesus. Do your part. It can be built. It will work. The church did more than survive. It prevailed. It rolled right over the Sanhedrin. The Caesar was afraid of it. It went all the way to Greece and the islands of the Mediterranean. Paul’s shipwreck landed him on one of them. Sometimes our shipwrecks put us where God wants us. The Father gives the plan. If we follow, he’ll bless it. Jesus is the means because he is salvation. He came born of a virgin, died for sins on the cross. He was buried and rose again the third day. He did everything it takes to provide our salvation. When he looks down at us I want him to say “this is my church.”
If you’re going to build you need a blueprint and supplies bought from the right place. Jesus is the best, the means to save. In the name of Jesus demons run and people are saved. They become God’s church. The people continued in one mind and spirit. We can continue.
While Jesus was here his followers grew from 12 to 70 to a sizeable multitude. There were 120 in the Upper Room and soon there were 5,000. See how the Lord works. On this rock the church will be built. The Holy Spirit gives the power. The Father gives the blessing and design. The Son provided the means. What can we do? Follow him and be faithful. God will bless. Don’t be silent. Share Jesus with others and people will be saved. What do we need to do to grow the church, to see people saved? We have to look to the power of the Lord for it’s under the authority of the Word people are saved. We need this one book–the Bible. It’s the authority.
We’re spiritual descendants of that early church. Why? The same Father still sits on the throne. The same Jesus is still Lord and Christ. The same Holy Spirit is waiting to give power to make it all possible.