A Community

“The community of believers was of one heart and mind,
and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own,
but they had everything in common.
With great power the Apostles bore witness
to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus,
and great favor was accorded them all.
There was no needy person among them,
for those who owned property or houses would sell them,
bring the proceeds of the sale,
and put them at the feet of the Apostles,
and they were distributed to each according to need.

Thus Joseph, also named by the Apostles Barnabas
(which is translated “son of encouragement”),
a Levite, a Cypriot by birth,
sold a piece of property that he owned,
then brought the money and put it at the feet of the Apostles.” Acts 4:32-37

I am not going to lie, I have a really hard time with this passage Taking it for face value, you get a sense of socialism, and thanks for my American Socio-economic up bringing, that doesn’t compute in my head. The idea of dividing possessions to those by need is not something that Capitalism teaches… to a point. But then, I took a step back. Way back.. and I prayed, as I always do over these passages. The Apostles were told to leave their world behind, and things would be provided in a greater fashion. These new converts to Jesus’ teaching were following the same. This is their way of following the path the Apostles took. Back then, to have possessions meant that you were a higher class, this is what they brought to the table. Peter was a great orator, he brought that. It is all about bringing the gifts that God has bestowed on you, and giving them to the greater good of the community. The community we have today, the entire world.  We all live in neighborhoods, and we all have gifts to share with each other. People long to feel wanted and share in the community they live in. It is why these followers did what they did. It is why we move where we do… good schools because of good teachers and neighborhoods, access to luxuries, church, etc. We should still be following this model today… helping everyone in the community, according to what they need.

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