It took a year to read the Bible, then almost 9 months to read the Apocrypha. Now, I'm going to try to offer reflections on the Narrative Lectionary. But, I won't be posting daily--at least, for a while.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Early Dispute in the Church, a Reflection on Acts 6:1-7

It was a time of church growth (Look back at Acts 5:12-16) although not without some harassment (Acts 5:17-42).  The growth had begun to spread among non-Jews. And, as the church took in people with different backgrounds, including immigrants, complaints also began to increase. For example, some of the Greek-speaking disciples thought they were not being treated as well as the original members.

The Twelve called a meeting of all the disciples and asserted that they had other responsibilities that deciding how to distribute the food. "This feeding everyone is cutting into our preaching time." They suggested that seven well-respected men who were Spirit-endowed and exceptionally wise be put in charge of serving the food.

Thus, the community selected seven (including a convert) to be in charge of this service. The original disciples would concentrate on prayer and preaching. The division of labor proved to be a success. The number of disciples increased significantly.

This passage to me is another example of "more of the same." Churches today still have disagreements. Long-time members and new members may have different attitudes and priorities. Moreover, even if everybody agreed on everything, people have different talents.

How does the Church divide the necessary work up? How do individual congregations?

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