The Lord Added to the Numbers

Happy Friday, Church Family! Over the past 9 weeks, we have been rolling out our Discipleship Pathway to you. Don’t worry; you don’t need to have it memorized as we will regularly keep it in front of the church. Essentially, we want you to know and experience God, connect with God and others, partner with God in His mission, and be a disciple who makes disciples. While everything we do as a church falls into one of those categories, we hope that everyone now has some tangible ways of deciding what a good “next step” will be because none of us have “arrived.”  Knowing that, we also want you to know that our weekend worship services and small groups are the two things that we would love for everyone here to be actively involved in. 

Starting next weekend, Dale will launch us into a series through the book of Acts. Interestingly enough, we can look to Acts for the reason we value both corporate worship and small groups. Acts 1:15 mentions that there were 120 believers in the Upper Room and gives us our first look into the early church. Turn one page to look at Acts 2:41; it says that “about 3000 were added to their number.” If you look just a few more verses down, not chapters, to Acts 2:47, we see that “the Lord added daily those who were being saved.” We can assume another 365 in a year at minimum. Then if you go to Acts 4:4, you see the number was much larger than 365 a year because we see the words “and the number of men grew to about five thousand.” Anywhere you have men, you would have close to double or triple the number by adding women and children. At minimum, you are looking at 15,000 people. Then you move to 5:14, and you see that “more and more believed and the Lord added to their number.” Then in Acts 5:28, we see where some critics say, “you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching.” Finally, Acts 6:1 says, “now in these days, when the number of disciples was multiplying.” We have now transitioned from addition to multiplication! While we could keep going through Acts, let’s look at Acts 21 where it says there were too many believers to be counted. WOW!

Please don’t think CFC is all about numbers. NO, we are not. But we are all about the LORD adding to us those who are being saved. It’s the Lord’s work, and we love being a part of it.

But how did this happen? How did the early church grow so rapidly? How did they go from 120 to likely over 100,000 in an area where there may have been 200,000 people total -- they filled Jerusalem? Obviously, all glory to God for this work; He built the Church, and He sustains it. But what were the methods of the believers? We may even wonder where they met. Those questions get answered in Acts, and it is exactly why we want to continue to worship corporately and call everyone to small groups. WE WANT TO BE A CHURCH OF GROUPS, NOT WITH GROUPS! All of us!

Acts 5:42 says they met in the “temple courts and from house to house.” In our day, that can be translated to “they met at either 5:30, 8:00, 9:15 or 10:45 at CFC AND (not or) from home to home. Church family, we love meeting and worshiping our great God corporately, but would you join a group with other believers? Would you commit to being in a group? Or even better, launching a group?

Join us this weekend as we worship the Lord in the “temple courts,” and we have a Small Group Fair for you to explore the “house to house” options!