C.A.C Sunday School Manual For June 20, 2021, Lesson Eleven : Topic – Administration of the early Church
CHRIST APOSTOLIC CHURCH WORLDWIDE
SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON
THEME: GOD IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF MAN (II)
(KINGDOM OF GOD FAMILY)
Unit Three : In Jesus and The Church
Date : June 20th, 2021
TOPIC : ADMINISTRATION OF THE EARLY CHURCH
CHRIST’S SPIRIT APPOINTS UNDER-LEADERS (Acts 2-6; Romans 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians 12:1-31; Ephesians 4:1-16)
Leadership is in categories. There are low level leaders, middle tiers, and top leaders. All these categories are very important in an organization, both secular and spiritual. The low level and middle level leaders can be identified as under leaders. Under-leaders in this context is talking about human heads of the Church, appointed by the Lord to oversee the affairs of His Church, since He wouldn’t be on ground in person to do the job.
A. GIVES THE CHURCH GIFTS AND OFFICERS (Rom. 12:3-8; 1 Cor. 12:1-31; Eph. 4:1-16)
And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers (Eph. 4:11).
i. God made Jesus to gloriously return to Him after completing His earthly assignment (Acts 1; Phil. 2:9-11), but the Spirit of Jesus would come to takeover on earth, from where Jesus stopped (Jn. 16:5-15).
ii. God’s plan is that, through the Spirit of Christ, the Church would be launched and administered, and for effectiveness and proper administration, the Spirit must work through some people.
iii. Eph. 4:1ff: God’s call through His Spirit, having brought us into Christ, as member of His body (vv. 1-6; Jn. 6:44ff), releases gifts/offices for the Church without which the perfect purpose of God for establishing her would not have been possible. Can you mentioned some of these gifts (1 Cor. 12:1ff)?
iv. Remember how God appointed some under-leaders for the early Church (Acts 6:1-7). He has also given what should qualify such church leaders/officers (1 Tim. 3:1ff). Are you meaningfully contributing to the Church? Don’t disappoint God.
v. Rom. 12:3-8: Once, are these offices and gifts in operation in your local Church (Acts 13:1-3)? Two, expediency demands …let us use them… (vv. 6ff); they are for service. Three, they must complement one another …not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think (vv. 3-5).
v. 1 Cor. 12:1-31: Though, God has released many operational gifts and offices in, and for the Church, all are controlled by one Spirit and Lord. Diversity of ministries does not translate to diversity of God’s purpose for establishing the Church. Are you operating without cooperating? Better change now!
vii. Are you a member of Christ’s body? Are you holding any leadership position within the body? Consider it God’s grace, and use the office for the glory of God and growth of the body, out of which you are a member. This is highly rewarding, both now and ultimately.
B. WORKS THROUGH CHURCH LEADERS (Acts 2-6; Eph. 4:12-16)
And through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. And they were all with one accord in Solomon’s Porch (Acts 5:12).
i. Eph. 4:12-16: The divine purpose of God-given gifts and offices to the church is for the equipping of the saints toward godly maturity. Hope this is the case with you, individually and congregationally. Don’t make mistakes! God doesn’t joke with His purposes.
ii. Acts 2:1ff: Since the day of Pentecost, God has never stopped manifesting through the apostles (church leaders) and other believers. Significantly, God used the formerlly timid Peter turned Spirit-Filled to speak so powerfully that a huge number of converts were recorded through that session of witnessing (vv. 5-39) God in action through His prepared and inspired vessels.
iii. 3:1ff: The healing at the gate of the temple is another show of God’s power through the leaders of His people to proclaim His praise and bring unbelievers to His knowledge. How available are you for God’s manifestation? Availability determines your usability.
iv. 4:1-31: With God, the church leaders and other believers enjoyed uncommon boldness and further unstoppable manifestations of God’s power.
v. 5:1-21: The No-nonsense God would not allow any infiltration in His newly constituted fold. He assisted His Spirit-filled vessel to fish out the culprits, and miraculously fold. He assisted His Spirit-filled vessel to fish out the culprits, and miraculously, He set His apostles free from the prison.
vi. 6:1-7: When the devil came up with a threatening crisis, God helped the leaders to settle it in such a way that positively impacted on the Church. He sovereignty worked through the leaders as they cooperated with Him. No one leads His people without His equipment and strategy (Jn. 15:5-7).
vii. God, definitely would continue to work for the development and growth of the Church to the glory of His own name using human agents. The challenge: Are you ready and available for God to work in, and through you for the progress and unity of His Church.
1. Since its inception, God has been in charge of His Church through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
2. God is manifesting His unlimited, glorious power in His Church by placing devoted and committed men and women in ministry and leadership roles with operational gifts.
1. Discuss the role of Jesus Christ as the Head of the Church.
2. Explain vividly how the Holy Spirit helped with the growth and proper management of the early Church. Any challenge, today?
SUGGESTED ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS 1:
The role of Jesus Christ as the Head of the Church entails:
i. His declaration made the Church to come into being (Matt. 16:16-19).
ii. He gathered the Church by bringing together two different sets of people who were formally far apart, that is, Jews and Gentiles (Eph. 2:14-18).
iii. In His body, through His stoning death, He reconciled man to God and formed an ecclesiastical body, the Church of God.
iv. Having achieved this wonderful feat for the Church, God therefore made Him the Head of the Church (Eph. 1:22, Phil. 2:9-11).
v. He also sent the Holy Spirit into the Church to birth and nurture the Church.
vi. Jesus continues to monitor and protect the Church under the guide of His Spirit, Christ’s Spirit, and continues to give life and succour to her (Eph. 1:13,14).
vii. He is administering the Holy Ghost-birthed and filled Church, using the men and women that the Holy Ghost has influenced to bring about development of the body (Eph. 4:11-13).
viii. Apart from human heads who are physical leaders in the Church and representatives of Christ, God released some ministering gifts to bless the work of the Church (1 Cor. 12:1-30).
ix. Finally, Jesus will present the Church to God as a bride without blemish (Eph. 5:25-27).
ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS 2:
i. The Eternal Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God and the third Person of the Trinity, did not come to fully abide with the Church until Christ had departed. He waited until His time to indwell the Church because the Triune God is not at conflict, or competition with Himself (Deut. 6:4; Acts 2:1-4).
ii. The Comforter, unlike Jesus who is given for the whole, is given to the Church for comforting, guidance, direction, leadership, etc. (Isa. 11:2; 61:1ff; John 3:16; 15:26; 16:5-11; Eph. 1:13,14).
iii. On the day of Pentecost, He rested on about 120 men and women who were Christ’s disciples, waiting for His endowment, and gave them power to do the work commissioned them, in fulfillment of Joel 2:28.
iv. He has since been the Spirit of the believers, helping them to maintain membership of, and ministering in the Church (Acts 2:11ff, 4:31, 13:2-3).
v. At a point, He emboldened to preach the gospel, just like He assisted Peter to be bold to preach and convert 3000 souls at Pentecost.
vi. He was with them and encouraged them through the persecutions they went through.
vii. The Holy Spirit became a great companion of the disciples and all members of the first Church (Acts 5:1-11).
viii.He aided them in the spread of the gospel, and assisted them in making many converts (Acts 2:41, 47; 3:14).
ix. We are the product of what the Holy Spirit did in, and through the early disciples.
x. Today, the ministry of the Holy Spirit is evident as ever, as there wouldn’t be the Church of God without the Holy Spirit.
xi. So, we need to realise that this is the era of the Holy Spirit, and this era shall continue until Christ’s second coming (Eph. 1:13,14).
xii. He is our seal and personal Guide and Guard to us. Make Him your companion, and He shall be active in you (Rom. 8:1-16).
It was established that the first Church prospered spiritually, physically, and in all ramifications, because God’s leadership through the Holy Spirit was evident therein. The onus is now on us today to allow God lead and direct His Church as ever. Why are many churches struggling today? Why do we have churches that are not fulfilling their mandates? Many churches are already separated from their Lord and Head, Jesus Christ. There is no relationship between them and their Life-giver. When a branch decides to be severed from the vine, the result is obvious (Jn. 15:1ff). Therefore, the Church must relate well with her spiritual Head in all areas, to be able to witness unstoppable growth and unprecedented development. Stay glued to the Vine, Jesus Christ.
The good Lord has assisted us to see how the first Church faired, under the leadership and authority of God, the Founder and Owner, in this lesson. We have also been challenged to follow the same path that the early Church followed for growth, which is close relationship with the Head of the Church, Jesus Christ. On this note, we have come to the end of this powerful lesson. May the Holy Spirit assist us to be part of that glorious Church, immediately and ultimately, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
DEVOTIONAL BIBLE READINGS FOR WEEK TWO
Mon. 14: God’s People Sense A Crisis (Acts 6:1)
Tue. 15: The Disciples Recognised Specialisation (Acts 6:2)
Wed. 16: More Leaders To Be Engaged (Acts 6:3,4)
Thur. 17: Modality For Getting God’s Workers (Acts 6:5,6)
Fri. 18: The Word Flourished (Acts 6:7)
Sat. 19: Stephen The First Martyr (Acts 6:8-15)