“It is not right that we should neglect the Word of God in order to wait on tables. Therefore, friends, select from among yourselves seven men of good standing, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint to this task, while we, for our part, will devote ourselves to prayer and to serving the Word.” Acts 6:2-4
As we begin to study together this sixth chapter of Acts, by overview we see that there is a deviation now from the original communal sharing (we saw how Ananias and Sapphira earlier misrepresented their gift to the Church and God’s punishment) to a selection of seven men deacons and after that the persecution of Stephen which shows us his glorious witness for Christ. The Apostles here in this text help us to note that they are not vice-president managers of the Church but their duties in obedience to Christ calls them to prayer and study of the Scriptural Word by the Holy Spirit’s demand on their hearts.
Leadership in our Church today is foundational on the same study of Holy Scripture and great amounts of prayer time spent in the Lord Jesus Christ’s living Presence. When the Hellenistic Greek speaking Jews in Jesus’ Church speak up about the neglect of the widows the Spirit brings new understanding to the leaders that administrative management is not to be their focus but prayer and study is priority for them. Scholars estimate this early Church size was 25,000 believers.
A minister who is leading her arm of Christ’s Church draws believers together to study with her and into invitational prayers together for burdens and concerns, for the lost, lonely, and least who have need of Christ’s Light of Love to guide and heal within them. Evil has been conquered by Christ on the Cross and His Resurrected Power within us activates Christian vitality within our world as we are obedient to Him. Together, our decisions and righteous living is given to us in both Scriptural study and anointed prayer.