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The Importance of Christian Practices

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The importance of Communion among the other early church practices, and its relevency to us today.

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Acts 2:42 NKJV
And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.

Acts 2:37–41 NKJV
Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.
What is it that every disciple of Jesus needs, in order to grow in spiritual maturity?
Now that the good weather is finally here, we have been able to plant in our vegetable garden boxes.
Regardless if we put in seeds or plants, they need some basic elements if they will successfully produce fruit.
And I can assure you, that if they don’t produce, we will rip them out and make room for others that will!
Well, the first thing we needed to do was prepare the soil from last year’s depletion of nutrients.
So we enriched the soil with composted manure, adding some much needed nitrogen, potash, and phosphorus to nourish the plants and promote healthy root growth.
Now the pea-pod seeds must have constant damp soil to promote germination, after that we can water regularly but not as often.
We also like the nice sunny days, as the plants can photosynthesize properly converting the sun’s rays to food.
Lastly, we keep an eye out for pests and take proper action to keep them from draining the plants which would kill them.
OK, now this is not brain surgery, right?
We know that if we want to see our garden produce, we need these basic things in place, otherwise we can forget about it!
And so I use this example of plants to bring to your attention the same basic needs in the life of a disciple, otherwise growth will be absent, and spiritual death will be inevitable.
So, getting back to our question:
What is it that every disciple of Jesus needs in order to grow in spiritual maturity?

I. We are in need of a routine.

A. Growth demands practice.
This is what we find these new believers doing, practicing!
They didn’t return home after receiving the grace of God thinking that they now were complete, they wanted to know Jesus more, and willingly made themselves accountable to the leadership, so that they could be conformed into the image of Christ.
They knew that if they were to grow in Christ, they needed a new spiritual walk, and they found it in a new routine.
B. Routine is not antithetical to grace.
I don’t know why people get this concept for everything in life except when it comes to faith!
We have workout routines!
We have family routines!
We have family routines!
We have weekly routines!
We have daily routines!
So why is it that when it comes to our spiritual walk we frown on routine?
Routines establish healthy patterns in our life.
Routines provide fertile ground for grace to grow.
There is a pervasive thinking amongst Christians, that because grace is free, then there is no need to do anything, because God will just further give us what we need.
Although grace for salvation is free; following Jesus, loving Jesus, obeying Jesus, (all of which accompany salvation and are proofs of our regeneration) are not free!
Thus, we have work to do, and would benefit greatly from a spiritual routine!

II. Every step of the practice is essential.

II. Every step of the practice is essential.

Just as the tender plant cannot continue to live and grow without all the essentials, believers cannot live and grow without each step.
A. Doctrine for understanding.
This is the teaching that must accompany belief.
1 Peter 2:2 NKJV
as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,
We can clearly see that without Bible teaching there will be no growth!
B. Fellowship for encouragement.
With the exception of Sunday mornings for an hour and a half, and perhaps for some of you an additional 1 1/2 hours of life groups, this pretty much comprises the time most Christians take in a week for fellowship!
It’s no wonder we are dying in our attempt to influence the world for Christ!
Fellowship provides encouragement, accountability, and strength, in overcoming sin and testifying for Christ!
testifying for Christ
C. Communion for remembrance.
I believe we get this one, because our communion service on the first Sunday of every month is one of the best attended services of the church.
But why is this practice so much more important to us and not the others?
D. Prayer for power and direction.
Prayer to the believer is like the sun to plants, it gives light!
Put a house plant near a window, and you will have to turn it occasionally because it grows toward the light.
Christians who pray, grow towards Jesus, the light of the world!
And when we talk to God, we are pointed to God, and He toward us!
There are many good lessons here, but the most important is that we understand the importance of having these basic practices part of our daily routine.
Without which, we will become anemic and dry up!
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