Do the Right Thing
Respond to conflict and be a part of the solution
Sunday August 7, 2022 - Pastor Wungreiso Valui
THE BIG IDEA
You will face many direct oppositions from the enemy on many different fronts. How you deal with conflicts, potential divisions can make all the difference.
Do The Right Thing. Respond to conflict and be a part of the solution
KEY VERSE: Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith. Acts 6:7
- 1. The Hellenists Christians did the right thing
- 2. The Hebrew Christians did the right thing
- 3. The Apostles did the right thing
- 4. The Seven men did the right thing
In Acts chapter 6, the early Christians were facing direct oppositions from Satan. The church was facing potential divisions. Satan was trying to divide the Christians by setting them up against each other.
1. What Did The Hellenists Christian Do?
Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a complaint against the Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. Acts 6:1
- Multiplying: The church continued to grow despite the attack from Satan
- Complaint: The honeymoon period was over, they were facing internal corruption, internal dispute, and internal division
- Widows were neglected: The Hellenists widows and Christians were probably labeled as compromising with the Greek culture and not taken seriously
- The Hellenists Christians doing the right thing
- The Hellenist Christians went to the apostles. They did the right thing by taking the complaint to the right people.
- Be a part of the solution. Do not use conflict for personal gain.
- Listen to others -especially those who felt wronged. Ask them to suggest a solution
- Do not throw the complainers out
2. What Did The Hebrew Christians Do?
...And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch. Act 6:5
- The Hebrew Christians were probably labeled as Holier than thou traditional Christians.
- The Hebrew Christians may have asked the Hellenists to seek out the seven men.
- The Hebrew Christians Doing The Right Thing
- They were pleased with the seven men, all with Greek names.
Be a part of the solution
3. What Did The Apostles Do?
Then the twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said, "It is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables. Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business; but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word." Acts 6:1-4
- Summoned the multitude: The apostles pursued a solution after receiving input from the people
- Not desirable: Not good for the apostles to spend their time administrating the practical needs of the widows
- Word of God: Devote to ministry of the word and prayer.
- Serve tables: Managing daily distribution and financial matters (Table could also mean money matter).
- Seven: One could oversee the table different days of the week
- Good reputation: Focus on the character of the men to be chosen
- Full of the Holy Spirit: Spiritually gifted and practically wise
- Whom we may appoint: The final decision rested with the apostles. They asked the congregation to nominate the men
- The Apostles Did The Right Thing
- The Apostles showed great sensitivity to the offended Hellenists. They engaged with the congregation and delegated responsibilities
- Delegating responsibilities is not about superiority
- You don't have to be everything for the church
4. What Did The Seven Men Do?
Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them. Acts 6:6
- Set Before: The seven men agreed to the call
- Laid Their Hands: The congregation prayed and blessed them
- The Seven Men Did The Right Thing
- They accepted the call to a common thing
- Practical service is spiritual service.
- People should consider it a privilege to serve the Lord in these basic, practical ways, instead of seeing it as an unglamorous burden.
- Apart from the cross, Jesus showed the ultimate measure of love by simply washing His disciples' feet (John 13:1-5).
- Even the smallest part brings the gospel to others.
Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith. Acts 7:7
Word of God spread
- One person served the table and oversaw the daily distribution one day a week, the rest of the week they were preaching the gospel and teaching the word.
- Stephen did great wonders and signs among the people. He was not tied down to serving tables and the daily distribution
- Phillip went down to Samaria and preached the gospel and did signs and wonders
Disciples multiplied greatly
God multiplied the number of his people. Satan tried to attack the church through division but God protected the church.
Great many of the priests were obedient to the faith
- The early Christians chose simple deacons and got converted priests
- The apostles appointed deacons and the Holy Spirit gave evangelists and martyrs
And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people
The seven were chosen to do common things, but they were found to do uncommon things
God used the seven men. There is no indication that they were smarter, better educated, or better debaters than the Jews. God gave them power, and the Holy Spirit empowered them to spread the good news of Jesus.