NEW LIFE in CHRIST demands a CHANGED LIFESTYLE: "Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers." (Acts 2:41-42)
In the above passage, we see that Luke shifts from what took place on the day of Pentecost to a more general description of the lifestyle of the early Jerusalem church believers shortly after that day (see Acts 4:32–5:11; 6:1–6). The impact and the infilling of the Holy Spirit in the lives of these trailblazing believers (numbering 3,120 - see Acts 1:15; 2:41) transformed their lifestyle to adopt four important regular habits (Acts 2:42–47):
- They followed the apostles’ doctrine: Uniformity of belief concerning the person of Jesus Christ—based on the eyewitness testimony of His followers—was essential. The disciples followed the apostles’ doctrine - the inspired teachings of the apostles, which were delivered orally at first, and were now preserved in the New Testament. These included the Old Testament Scriptures as well as the teachings of Christ on earth and the revelations He gave to the apostles from heaven.
- They practiced the community fellowship: The Greek word translated ‘fellowship’ means sharing in the lives of other believers. There was a great desire among the new believers to be with the people of God and share things in common with them. There was a sense of being separated to God from the world, and a community of interests with other Christians. They demonstrated their lifestyle changes by even sharing their possessions with one another.
- They remembered Christ by breaking bread: The “breaking of bread” probably included the Lord’s Supper as well as a meal in connection with that celebration (see 2:46; 20:7; 1 Cor. 10:16; 11:23–25). This may refer primarily to the Lord’s Table as it would be quite unnecessary to say that they continued steadfastly eating their meals. From Acts 20:7 we learn that the practice of the early Christians was to break bread on the first day of the week. However, some scholars believe this is a broader reference to the “love feast,” a meal of fellowship in the early church.
- They worshiped God with prayers and praises: Through this, they expressed complete dependence on the Lord for worship, guidance, preservation, and service. In prayer the believers praised and thanked God, and interceded for His glory. Corporate prayers were viewed as an essential part of the spiritual growth of the church. The feeling of awe that the obvious working of God in their midst inspired, continued among all the people in Jerusalem.
Based on the above passage, this is a question that we need to ask ourselves: has our lifestyle changed as a result of our adopting a new life in Christ? If not, we need to make the changes that are lacking for this is what Christ expects from our daily life.