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Devotion: The Birth of the Church

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The Birth of the Church

November 9th, 2018 | Acts 2:1-17

Some church buildings have a cornerstone inscribed with the year the foundation was laid. As we have seen, the church’s true foundation goes back much further. Its roots stretch back into eternity (see Eph. 1:4). But if we were to choose a birthday for the church, it would be the day of Pentecost.

After the Tower of Babel, God confused human languages and humanity scattered (see Gen. 11:9). The outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost anticipated the regathering of this scattered humanity in Christ. It foreshadowed John’s vision of an innumerable multitude drawn from every tribe, language, people, and nation who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ (see Rev. 7:9). Peter pointed to the prophecy of Joel 2:28–32, which spoke not only of an outpouring of God’s Spirit but also of the advent of the Day of the Lord and
the messianic age (vv. 16–17).

The day of Pentecost distinguished the church as a community of the Spirit. Not only are its members united to Jesus Christ by the Spirit, but they are also joined to one another. The church comes together to worship God, and it also does so to minister to one another.
The Spirit empowers believers for service by enabling them to carry out their various ministries.

Later in the book of Acts, we read about two subsequent outpourings that resemble this one. One occurred in Samaria (Acts 8:14–17). The other was in the house of the Roman centurion Cornelius (Acts 10:45–48). These confirmed God’s intent to include the Gentiles in the promise of the gospel. This is exactly what Jesus said would happen when He initially commanded the disciples to wait for the outpouring of the Spirit (Acts 1:8).

APPLY THE WORD

No other organization or institution on Earth is like the church. Whether your church is large or small, its power or effectiveness doesn’t depend on material resources. The church is the community of faith in the resurrected Jesus and given the power of the Holy Spirit. God can do great things in your community through your church.

PRAYER | INDIA 

Please pray with Pastor Gyan Singh from the city of Basti. Recently, 200 extremists from the group Hindu Yuva Vahini came to his house and forced him into ghar wapsi (reconversion to Hinduism). Pray with Gyan and his church.

Today in the Word’s Devotion is a production of Moody Global Ministries

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