by Andy Chambers
The early chapters of Acts paint a portrait of church life so compelling that countless Christians have turned to them for guidance as to what their churches could be. I believe Luke wanted to provoke such a response from readers.
Throughout Acts as Luke describes the beginnings of the Christian movement, he does not simply show the gospel spreading from city to city. He shows gospel preaching resulting in local churches, beginning in Jerusalem. Sometimes we hear only of the church’s original meeting place in a particular city, like Lydia’s home in Philippi (Acts 16:40). Other times we hear that the gospel has spread across entire cities. Teaching and preaching in Acts occurred “in various homes” in Jerusalem, “from house to house,” and even in a rented “lecture hall” in Ephesus (5:42; 19:9; 20:20). Yet everywhere a church was planted Acts tells readers something about life in the newly formed community of believers.