Selfishness and Pride

From Help for Shepherds
Jump to: navigation, search

Back to Message Ideas

Selfishness and Pride
Text: Acts 4:32-37
Occasion: General
Audience: General
Theological Tradition: General
Topic: Grace, self-sacrifice, Love
Author: Brian M


Direction

We are to live in radical selflessness, giving to each other

How to Get There

  • When we are first born we know only ourselves and look after only ourselves.
  • As we grow, we begin to recognize that other people exist, and have value besides ourselves.
  • But some people grasp this truth more than others. One person can be selfish and another
  • One major reason is what people get used to expecting from life and others. If they learn from others that people aren't worth time, they grow to believe it. If they are with people who are selfless, they learn to value others.
  • And we learn the most from people the most like us, whether culturally, geographically, or relationally.
  • We are usually only as good as the example we're following.
  • Acts 4 gives us a picture of self sacrifice that most of us have never seen anywhere else. It's the ultimate picture of what selfless love looks like.
  • We usually give from our excess, these people were giving from what they needed to survive.
  • Other people's needs weren't just real, they were equal with the believer's own needs.
  • They learned the same way we learn, from those around them. They learned from Jesus, from other disciples, that others were as important as themselves.
  • This is grace, placing others above themselves. And it is why Acts is so powerful, we can be like that.
  • So what are we teaching people around us about the Christian life? Who are we following and becoming like?
  • It takes time to change, but we will only be as good as those we follow. Pick who you follow carefully. Follow God, learn from the grace Jesus' gave us, because we are meant to be loving each other as fully as this passage describes.

Things to Watch For

The NT should not be presented as ideal Christianity entirely. The next passage is about people failing to meet these ideals and pretending they were. There were problems, but that anyone was able to do this at all is a testament to what the early church was like.

Make sure it is clear that this was not a one time occurance. The passage specifically says that this happened from time to time, not just once.

Other Ideas that use this Topic:

 DirectionCategory
Cohort CanonballThat they need to be protecting and helping each other in order to stand against the enemyExperiential Learning
Crucifixion Nail.jpgA hand forged replica of a Roman crucifixion nailImage



This Message is part 3 of A Faith's Beginnings message series.