I have recently started my New Testament B paper at BCNZ paper by CDL (centre for distance learning) I am really enjoying it so far.

New Test B looks at Acts through to Revelation but focuses mostly on Acts. I am really excited about this as I have never really read through the book of Acts before, except for the odd bit of chapter 2 that gets quoted at Pentecost and other odd times to make some point about the Holy Spirits power. However in reading Acts one learns that the Holy Spirit is a lot more than a once in a life time experience (not that I had been assuming otherwise) anyway….. I have been learning a heap over the last couple of weeks.

A couple of revelations and thinking points:

· In the Gospels Jesus told the disciples to go out…. the disciples were okay with this as long as it was only to people within there comfort zone…i.e. Jews. Peter made a mighty huge call in eating with people and preaching the gospel to those outside this cultural and religious group i.e. Gentiles. Because he did this he could never be leader of the Jerusalem church because he was not ‘conservative ‘ enough……. Who are we putting labels on? Are we willing to do something crazy for God if he calls us to do this , even if it looks crazy to others at our church?
· Secondly I was really convicted by a note in my notes from my lesson on Acts 1-6 on chapter 6 where it said regarding Acts 6:1-7 . ‘that we need to be very wary of the insecurity and need for power of those who want to do it all themselves’ . This has been a great learning and reflection point for me over the past couple of weeks not just in my churchy stuff but in my other work stuff too.
· Thirdly – as fantastic and utopian as collective ownership may seem in the form of Marxism this is not a form of social justice to cure the worlds ills. The common purse as shown in Acts 2 and Acts 4 is an example of a community that volunteered to do so out of a common belief. This again comes back to the beatitudes that say blessed are the poor for theirs is the kingdom of God (see my earlier post on this – type in Chris Marshall)

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