The Jerusalem Church (Part 2)

J. D. Conley
June 2, 2013

The Jerusalem church experienced rapid growth. About three thousand were added to it on the first day, (Acts 2:41). The number soon grew to five thousand, (Acts 4:4). The church continued to grow by thousands as the days passed. The Jerusalem church was united. Little wonder that it made such huge strides. Disunity is the greatest obstacle to the onward march of the church.

The history of the Jerusalem church was one of persecution. The first persecution resulted in the arrest of Peter and John. In the second persecution all of the apostles were arrested. The third persecution was a general attack. Stephen lost his life, and the jails were filled with Christians. Its fourth persecution was planned and executed by Herod. James was seized and beheaded. Peter was put in prison and a similar fate was in store for him when he was miraculously released. Of the fifth and last persecution we have no record in the New Testament. Josephus gave a brief account of it.

Finally the time came for this marvelous church to close its career. It had set an example of unity, liberality, loyalty, zeal, and courage. Rebellious Jews stirred up an insurrection against Rome. Titus swept down upon Jerusalem in full fury. As the Roman legions began to surround the doomed city, the disciples, in obedience to the Lord’s command, given before His death, made a hasty flight and the Jerusalem church was no more. The Jerusalem church died as it had lived, in obedience to the Lord. It was bom in glory, it died in glory.

May God grant that the like of this church be reproduced upon this earth again and again so that thousands dot the surface of the earth once more.