The Early Christian Church was launched at Pentecost when Peter preached to the crowds in Jerusalem (circa 33AD). About 3000 came to faith, were baptized, and added to the band of Jesus followers.
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” (Acts 2:42-27)
From that day on for the next two millennia worship, spiritual formation, fellowship, and outreach have continued to be essential elements in the function and life of the Church. Some congregations place more emphasis upon one or two elements over the others, but all 4 are indispensable for any Christian community.
Each of the 4 building blocks suggests movement in a different direction: worship is moving praises upward in serving God; spiritual formation is God moving nourishment downward in nurturing believers; fellowship is moving care inward in fostering Christian community; and outreach is moving the gospel outward in fulfilling the Great Commission. The 8-part sermon series will help us examine these building blocks and see how they should be applied to our church context and our individual Christian lives.