Scripture Reading: Acts 8:1
A. The first generation of Christians struggled through many difficult changes in a very short period of time.
B. When adversity arises, especially within the body of Christ, how should the Christian respond?
I. The early church was not without its problems.
A. They suffered persecution at the hands of the Jews (Acts 6:8–12; 7:57–58; 8:3; 9:1–2) and at the hands of civil authorities (Acts 12:1–4; 24:27).
B. There were disputes about everything from “the daily distribution” (Acts 6:1) to the status in the church of Gentile converts (Acts 15:1–3).
II. How is the Christian and the church to solve such problems?
A. We must spend as much time as possible in prayer and in God’s word (Acts 2:42; 4:23–31; 6:4; 12:5; 16:25; 20:36).
B. We can turn disadvantages into advantages (Acts 8:1; 4:33–37; 11:29–30; 24:17; 15:1–21).
C. We must exercise good leadership and properly organize ourselves (Acts 2:46; 6:1–7).
A. We may think that times are good right now, but we should understand how quickly that can change.
B. We don’t have to wait for conflict to start preparing for it through a steady diet of study, prayer, and godly living.