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Chapter Six: The First Sign of Disunity

The church continued to grow rapidly, as disciples multiplied almost daily. Yet a high standard of caring had been set, where the needs of the least of the church were met by the Body.  New believers meant a continued and growing need to teach them the Word of God so that the church would continued to be grounded in the truth of the gospel.  But in this growing time, some basic needs were not being met and this was creating a conflict that could have severely undermined the church and its mission.  These challenges, however, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, allowed the church to make some changes in its leadership that would ultimately strengthen the church and its witness as a new season of persecution was about to begin.

1. Read chapter6, verses 1-7.  What is the problem that is threatening the unity of the church?

2. What do the Twelve do to deal with the conflict?

3. What do they propose as the solution to the problem?

4. Why did the Twelve feel it necessary to add another layer of leadership to the church to address this problem?

5. We particularly note the qualifications of Stephen. What are they and why do you think it is important that he have these qualities when chosen for this second level of leadership?

6. Why is delegation an important leadership skill in the church?

7. What is the result of these steps (in Acts6) on the witness and work of the church?


2 Responses to “WEEK 17 – CHOOSING THE SEVEN”

  1. Delegation is important because it allows us to accomplish more of the Lord’s work. I see this very strongly when I work with Good News Clubs. I run one club, but I oversee 9 of them. When I go to one of the clubs I oversee, there is a temptation for me to work directly with the kids because it is something I love to do. I am also often asked to fill in and do part of a club. Of course, if I do these things too much at one club, I am not able to get to all the clubs I need to oversee. I have learned that God can reach so many more kids by delegating and equipping the volunteers at each one, rather than trying to teach it myself. There are limits to what any one of us can do–but when we delegate and equip others, out influence is multiplied many times over.
    The disciples could not preach the gospel they had learned directly from Jesus and oversee the distribution of food to widows. By choosing 7 godly and well-equipped men to do it, they were able to reach people by preaching the gospel and to reach people by providing a need (for food). This multiplied and strengthened their witness.

    • It’s also a lesson Moses’ brother-in-law Jethro taught him when he actually was trying to be the “only leader” for an entire nation on its exodus from Egypt. It’s also an indication that these men were trusting the Holy Spirit to lead through seven other men in this area of the young church’s life. The Holy Spirit is not about hierarchy.

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