Acts 5:42 - And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching that the Christ is Jesus.
The scene of this text is Jerusalem; the time is shortly after our Lord's death on a cross and His glorious resurrection. The persons there were the early followers of our Savior. Those were happy, hallowed days, for the first-century church enjoyed marvelous blessings which often appear to be lost in our days. We read that "the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul" (Acts 4:32a). No multitudes of denominations, divisions, and subdivisions for them—not yet at least—but a church "of one heart and soul," because it had one faith in the one Word and in the one Deliverer from sin.
These early believers practiced their faith, and the Savior's love was a dynamic force in their lives. How did the apostles and early believers build such a strong faith? We are told they were in the temple every day, teaching and preaching. But we are also told that the temple wasn't the only place in which the early church leaders and believers talked about and shared the Good News of Jesus.
We read they also went "from house to house." The public messages in the temple were only the beginning. They had to be followed by private instruction in the home. The same holds true for our homes today. In His limitless love, the Son of God offers His constant companionship in knitting our families together, building them up in His love, joy, and peace. But for this to happen, we need to make Him a part of our homes, guiding us in our conversations and the way we deal with one another.
In our homes, Jesus gives us the strength to overcome evil, resist temptation, subdue our selfish natures, and live self-sacrificingly for others. And how our homes need this today! Has your marriage come to the breaking point? Have your children become like strangers, distracted by the world and its diversions? These are common problems in our households, but they are not too much for God to handle.
I pray you know, by the Holy Spirit's sanctifying power, a home that is filled with heaven's peace. For when you trust Jesus as your Savior, His Spirit will help you overcome anger, envy, lovelessness, and the strife that besets so many households today. I pray that the Holy Spirit who quickened your faith in our blessed Redeemer will make you ready to pardon an erring husband, an unfaithful wife, an indifferent parent, or an ungrateful child.
And isn't this why we need the Gospel in our homes—so that God can renew and transform us at ground level? The first apostles knew this, and it's no different for us. How God would have it that our homes are filled with those who love and care for each other, forgiving one another, putting their faith into action. I pray you know this kind of love in your household.
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, lead our families to dwell in Your mercy and peace, honoring Your Son who came to give us life abundantly. In His Name we pray. Amen.
From "Jesus Christ in Your Home," a sermon excerpt from Rev. Dr. Walter A. Maier, the first Speaker of The Lutheran Hour
1. Do you take what you learn at church and use it in your family's home life? How do you do that?
2. When Scripture says the early apostles "did not cease teaching and preaching that the Christ is Jesus," what do you think that looked like in real life?
3. Which LHM Barna-based resources from www.lhm.org/barna do you most like to use?
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