Communification Part 1

Communification Part 1

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Has the church lost the sense of “the Family of God?” Has modern church forgotten communalism? Do we need each other anymore? Are we islands unto ourselves seeking the American Dream? So many questions…so few answers, or so it seems….

I have always believed that the Bible holds the answers and remains the one Compass which point to True North in all these issues. Upon this premise, then, comes the question, “Well how did all this work in the Bible?” Well, dear brother or sister, let me show you:

It all started in a book of the Bible we call the Acts of the apostles. So, let’s take a trip back to that time and see how they did it. The Roman occupied nation of Israel was a hotbed of social, political, and religious turmoil. There were taxes from Ceasar, ultra-Jewish traditions of men, Zealots and assassination attempts, and the one and only Messiah come to cut through the craziness. The religious world could not have been more screwed up and over-saturated with ideas and theologies.

Fast-forward to just after the disciples saw Jesus raise to life and ascend to the Father. The Savior had told them to wait to receive power, and the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I’m sure they really didn’t understand exactly what that was or how that was going to happen, but wait they did. Pentecost, the festival of harvest, came with special fulfillment that year, as many devout believers came from all the surrounding countries. And then the fire and the Spirit fell. They were granted with unction, quickened with divine boldness, and proclaimed the great works of God in many different tongues. Not a bad holiday, of you ask me.

Then the world changed…and the church was born.

After Peter, the fisherman gone master orator, finishes his speech…the Christian message spread like a holy epidemic in Jerusalem and Judea. 3,000 in one day…oh God, help me believe. Utterly amazing. Anyway, these young Christlings then continued steadfastly in the apostles’ teachings, fellowship, sharing meals, and in prayers. These were the foundational blocks of the growing Body. Simple enough.

Many wonders and signs were done by the apostles–miracles man, miracles.

Great fear was upon every soul because the God of their fathers whom they had read about was literally and visibly at work, moving at will through them and the masses. He rendered the inactive active; the useless, useful. The Spirit was upon them, filling them to overflowing. These vessels were pure and ready to pour. And that Living Water flowed freely.

What we are told next, in the second chapter of Acts, is what really rocks me to the core. This movement, as it were, seemed to effect completely the whole man or woman. It transformed impersonal intellectual or philosophical position to real, flesh and blood faith…and a life that just emanated a total surrender to the Lord of Hosts. These newborn believers didn’t just give God the sacrifices of their lips, in contrast, they worshiped Him with all of who they were.

We know this because the next thing we see them doing is giving ridiculously of themselves and their belongings to each others. They were, super simply, TOGETHER. They had ALL THINGS IN COMMON. Meaning, everyone’s everything was for everybody.

They SOLD THEIR POSSESSIONS & GOODS…and gave to anyone, all men…WHOEVER HAD NEED.

These statements of utter separateness to the ways of God and from self-serving behavior were almost too sweet and sacred to believe. The results spoke of an unprecedented unity and a surefire praise and adoration of Jesus the Messiah. They continued daily with one accord in the Temple, and breaking bread from house to house…and they ate their meals with gladness and singleness of heart. They also PRAISED GOD and had favor with all people. And the Lord just added and added to the church daily…such as should be saved.

THIS is the biblical example of the Family of God? THIS is holy communalism? THIS is how we need to need each other? THIS is how we keep from being self-absorbed and conceited? Well…yes, yes, yes, and YES! Then, I guess, we need to ask how in the world we can accomplish a close example of this Acts model or pattern our modern church structure off of this. Is it even possible? I think it is, not cultish or out of the realm of possibility, but actually attainable. And we will follow this line of thought in practical application in the second part to this blog.

We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.

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About Joshua M. Brindle

Child. Father. Husband. Herald. Writer. Messenger. Psalmist. Poet-Prophet. Biker. Beard-wearer. Teacher. Pastor? Follower. Disciple. Disciple-er. Bearer of the Torche. Keeper of the Flame. Waver of the Banner. Running the race. Fighting the fight. Revolutionary...hopefully.
This entry was posted in Communalism/Acts Model, Flame, ministry, Revival, Tribe of Judah General, Tribe of Judah School and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Communification Part 1

  1. kyle barron says:

    Brother you would be amazed on how many people in the body are preparing themselves and living this sort of thing out already. The Lord is speaking to those who listen.

  2. N.A.Rypstra says:

    I look forward to reading the rest of this! I consider the book of Acts to be the most important picture God has given the Church for how a church should function. It would be great to see how this might work today! Thanks!

    • Joshua M. Brindle says:

      Brother Rypstra, we feel pretty certain that God has called us to live this out as much as possible. We are already sharing meals, cars, and some belongings and bills. It is amazing how modest the Body can live and how much you can give even from your great poverty. We will discuss this more…but the Body has to be willing to give God EVERYTHING and not just what is comfortable and calculated….

  3. Big Ben says:

    The problem that the church has today, is the same problem that the church had in the first century. People started to show up. How I would love to stop the book of Acts at chapter 2. I love warm fuzzies. However the same Holy Spirit that penned chapter 2 also wrote chapters 5 and 6.
    Act 5:1 But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,
    Act 5:2 And kept back [part] of the price, his wife also being privy [to it], and brought a certain part, and laid [it] at the apostles’ feet.
    Act 5:3 But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back [part] of the price of the land?
    Act 5:4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.
    Act 6:1 And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.
    So in just a few short chapters, we see the leavening starting to ruin the lump. Lies and discrimination are poking their head up in the church. But it gets worse doesn’t it. 1 Corinthians addresses drunkenness and sexual immorality within the fellowship. The poor were not being fed at the love feasts. 2 Thessalonians politely reminds those who don’t work, don’t eat. And finally at the close of the first century, John gets a report card concerning the seven churches in Asia minor. Sadly only two fellowships get a passing grade.
    The early church certainly started off well. It had about a seventy year run. Pretty good considering the absence of a completed Bible, phones, cars, I-gadgets and last but not least formally trained clergy. What did they have to fuel their momentum? Devotion, power from the Holy Spirit, persecution, famine.
    Just as the early church is a model of what TO do. It is equally an example of what not to do.
    A W Tozer quote, ‘IF the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the church today; 95% of what we do would continue on, and nobody would know the difference. But if the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the New Testament church in the book of Acts, 95% of everything they did would have stopped, and everybody would have know the difference.’

    • Joshua M. Brindle says:

      Ben, you are the only one on my case for having too many warm fuzzies! I guess my only response is…I’m ready for a seventy year run!!!

  4. is571520 says:

    Funny…I see the body doing this kind of ‘body stuff’, yet it is more in isolation or intentional anonymity–not necessarily always a bad thing, but sometimes a bit frustrating. I’ve gotten used to “…dwelling in my ceiled (paneled) house while (sometimes) the house of God lies in ruins…” I like my privacy, my “control’ of my resources and stewardships, my inner chambers where I can complain and critique rather than comfort, counsel, and commun-icate. I think there is room for some variance in the expression of our Christianity, but let it be all of Christ and none of me. Then, just maybe, my grip on things of this world will slowly loosen and I might find myself going from random, to regular acts of kindness.

    • Joshua M. Brindle says:

      Brian, I love your take…always willing to get the proper point of view. And yet, as with us all, to actually implement any of these radical, yet rotely simply ideas is very, very difficult. Especially for us leaders, we have to find a way to challenge and push, but not run people over. I’m desperately trying to land in this balance…but it is gonna have to be His Spirit that sets the foundations and builds the wall. Nehemiah has been a huge source of comfort it his season!

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