Healthy organisms multiply. Healthy churches…
“And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem.” -Acts 6:7
“So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace and was being built up. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it multiplied.” -Acts 9:31
In these passages and all throughout Acts, we see three things continually multiplied among the followers of Christ.
1) The Word of God: People seek out, listen to, understand, and apply Biblical teaching in their everyday lives. They don’t just show up and hear, they go out and live.
2) The number of disciples: More and more people take tangible steps of surrender to Jesus, receiving Him as Savior and following Him as Lord.
3) The fear of the Lord: This is not fear of judgment or punishment for a lack of right living. It is godly awe, reverence, and devotion to the Christ who delivers and empowers His people. Jesus becomes THE priority.
4) The comfort of the Holy Spirit: In a time of persecution and hardship, God’s people experience the transformative life of the Spirit of God, giving them strength and hope in every situation.
When these things are present and are multiplying among a community of Christ followers, there is a dynamism that causes change in the world around them and growth of the life within them.
This is what happened with the Church in Acts. When these things are not present, it’s only a matter of time before the life drains out and the church shuts down.
God works through multiplication.