Why We Are a Church Devoted to the Apostles’ Teaching
“So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls. And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”
(Acts 2:41-42, ESV)
Some churches are known for music programs, others for children or youth ministries, while yet others for some "niche" that appeals to a broad audience. While striving for excellence to the glory of God in all areas of ministry, at High Pointe Baptist Church, we want to be known as a church devoted to the apostles’ teaching. As we learn in Acts 2:42 after Peter's Jewish audience heard the gospel proclaimed, they responded with repentance and faith, were incorporated into the church through baptism, and they devoted themselves to a common faith, a common life, and a common worship.
It's no accident that the first devotion mentioned was to the apostles' teaching. I take that to mean that this is where our priority should be. But what is the apostles' teaching? In Acts 2:22-26, Peter preaches the good news concerning Jesus' life, death, resurrection, and exaltation as Lord and King. In Acts 4, Peter and John annoy the Jewish leaders because they were "teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead" (v.2). Then the Jewish leaders charged them not "to teach at all in the name of Jesus" (v.18). Then in Acts 5, the apostles’ teaching is referred to as “the words of life” (v.20-21). But again, the Jewish leaders “strictly charged them not to teach in this name” (v.28). Nevertheless, after they are released, Luke says of the apostles: “And every day in the temple and from house to house they did not cease teaching and preaching that Jesus is the Christ” (v.42).
I think we get the picture. The apostles' teaching is the teaching concerning Jesus. But there's more going on here than at first meets the eye. Faithful Jews are to be devoted to Moses' teaching. Now that the Spirit has been poured out, the new age of salvation has dawned, Jesus is king, and the authority for the new covenant people of God is no longer Moses, but Jesus – the new prophet who is better than Moses and the new king who is better than David. This is what the apostles are teaching. That now, all Scripture must be read through the lens of Jesus Christ. So, this is what we should be devoted to as well – the teaching of the apostles concerning Christ from all of Scripture.
For this reason, we want everything we do together as a church to be Word-saturated and gospel-centered. We want this gospel-centered Word ministry to be the basis for what we do in every area of church life. Therefore, EVERYTHING takes a back seat to the Word of God. Why? Because God created by His Word (Genesis 1). He gave His Word in the law so that His people would know how to live in the land (Exodus 19-20). He spoke His Word through the prophets, and in these last days, He has spoken through His Son (Hebrews 1:1-2), who is Himself the Word made flesh (John 1:14). God has brought us forth by the Word (James 1:18), and we are to receive the Word that has been implanted in us (James 1:21). It is no accident, then, that the leadership of the church is to preach the Word regardless of how it is received (2 Timothy 4:1-4). In light of these truths, I want to encourage all of us to be Word-saturated, gospel-centered people, and take advantage of the following Word ministries at High Pointe.
Daily Bible reading plans have been prepared for your personal study of the Word of God. You may pick one up at the information desk in the foyer, our church office, or call (512) 837-7725. We’ll even be glad to mail one to you. Of course, if you have a Bible reading plan already, great! We want to encourage all of us to be reading our Bibles regularly. And be sure you are also reading the Bible with others, one or two or three others.
We seek to be an Acts 2 church: a church that shares a common faith, a common life, a common worship, and a common witness. In the New Testament, the church gathered both corporately on the Lord’s Day and in smaller groups in people’s homes during the week. Life groups are not a place where you go to sit and listen to a lecture. They are a place where we apply the gospel Word to one another’s lives. Because we strive to be a Word-saturated, gospel-centered church, the foundation for discussion in our weekly Life Group meetings is the Sunday morning sermon. We want all of High Pointe to reverberate the Word of God throughout the life of the church. Life Groups are one of the ways in which we encourage one another to follow Jesus. To sign up for a group, contact Scott Cope via email (email@example.com) or by phone at the church office (512-837-7725). Life Groups meet every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Sunday evenings.
Lord’s Day Worship Gatherings
10:00 a.m. & 5:00 p.m. (every 2nd & 4th Sunday evenings)
It is a great joy when God's people gather to declare collective allegiance to the Lord Jesus Christ and to participate in the Lord’s Supper and witness baptism. Corporate worship is a weekly reminder that we are God’s people on God’s mission. It is also a time when we are reminded of the graciousness of a God who has communicated to His people by His Word. Therefore, when we gather together for corporate worship, it too is a time saturated by God’s Word now read through the lens of Jesus Christ.
For this reason, we’re committed to expositional preaching, which is preaching that takes a passage of Scripture, explains it in its biblical, historical, and theological context, then applies it to the lives of those gathered). When one faithfully exposits Scripture in the gathering, the expectation is that God's Word, along with God's Spirit, will expose our sins and the glory and marvel of the God who has dealt with our sins in Christ. If you desire to be a part of a Word-saturated, gospel-centered church and grow in your understanding of what God has declared to His people through His Word, then I invite you to walk with us on this journey of faith.
More in Straight to the Heart
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