The One Sign of a Spirit Led Church
Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. — Acts 4:32-35
Whenever I am looking for a new church to call home, there are certain hard and soft qualities that I am looking for. For example, a hard quality for me is teachers that teach exclusively from the Bible. A second hard quality for me would be elders who meet biblical qualifications for leadership. And sometimes some soft qualities might play in, like the style of music or the programming the church provides.
But I think these verses capture something that we should also be looking for — the lively presence of unity in the Spirit.
What the author is trying to capture with words is this incredible experience of spiritual unity. This was not man-made organizational uniformity contrived by the vision of some rogue leader. Now to outsiders, it may have looked this way. And to some, it might have even felt cultic. But the leader of this movement is not human. It's not even being led by Peter. It's a movement being led by the Holy Spirit, and it is unifying believers. And it's happening because they are allowing the Spirit to lead them. And the one conviction that is directing this movement is about one truth — that Jesus Christ was the Savior of mankind, and he rose from the dead, defeating sin and death for all who believe in his name. And the Spirit that Jesus left with us was leading this spiritual movement.
This is a great reminder to us that the church has a leader. The leader is the Spirit of the Almighty God. And our church leaders should relentlessly point us to God as the leader in everything they do. They should be instructing us from God's Word, guiding us by the Spirit, and be preaching about salvation in the name of the resurrected Jesus. And if they do, we should witness the unity of the Spirit through a diverse body of believers that almost seems indescribable. Like it is here. For this expression of spiritual unity goes far beyond the man-made uniformity driven by a narcissistic leader.
So today, let's pray for the church. Maybe you need to pray for your church. That its leaders and people would know unity in the Spirit. For the Holy Spirit is still present, and he wants to lead us through every challenging time.
ASK THIS: Are you praying for your church?
DO THIS: Pray that the Spirit would lead the church once again.
PRAY THIS: God, may the Spirit fall on the church in our time.
PLAY THIS: Rest On Us — Upper Room.
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