The word devoted finds application in what we call connection. Those first disciples and apostles were connected to Jesus through a series of habits, namely teaching, fellowship, breaking bread and prayer.
Most notable is the lasting nature of divine connection vs. man made connection. Our entire society, much like the ancient Roman world, is trying to connect with each other, but often to no avail simply because God is left out of the picture.
The word “devoted means continually steadfast toward.
Which brings up the following question, where does “devoted” lead? What is the outcome?
Matthew 16:19 quotes Jesus as saying, “the keys to the kingdom are granted,” to us. Keys can open locked doors, and that is Jesus point, being devoted to the right things in the kingdom opens previously locked doors.
How does devoted work?
The four habits mentioned—teaching—fellowship—breaking bread—prayer, are the nutrients for a supernatural life.
Teaching: Without a doubt teaching revolved around Jesus as God, Jesus as Messiah, salvation by faith, and the seal, baptism and on going filling of the Holy Spirit.
Fellowship: Friendship at the deepest level is spiritual, and when that friendship is bonded through the Word of God, deeper connections are made, and the sweetness of God inhabits that relationship.
Breaking Bread: The early church enjoyed communion during an actual meal. They went home and shared a brunch with a few folks, then in the middle of that meal enjoyed a sacred moment of communion.
Prayer: To read the through the book of Acts is to realize those first disciples prayed in order to mountains, for the glory of God, Prayer was real to them, and they were zealous for it.
The word awe in Greek is ginomai. The word means to see something come into existence. In this case it is God’s presence, which was so thick you could taste it. But much like the first immediate Pentecost experience, not everyone caught up in the presence of God actually repented and turned their heart toward.
The text says they held all things in common, but that does not mean they practiced communism. Their generous sharing was not a political concept but a prompting of love from the heart.
Here is a good way to thing about it:
Communism means everyone shares in the same misery.
Socialism means everyone shares in the same misery.
Capitalism means everyone shares in some pain with many doors open for success for many.
Jesus(ism) means everyone can win, but those who struggle must be cared for.
In communism and socialism, the state or government is eternal, and the individual is not. So the individual must serve the eternal state no matter what. In capitalism, the state or government play a more limited role because the individual is eternal and the state is not.
In Jesus(ism), everyone wins because the strong can succeed and the weak can be looked after.
The selling of goods to take care of others did not mean people sold everything they had, although some did that, but many sold assets in order to ensure the success of the church and the needs of the poor.
What a great fellowship, daily they wanted Jesus, so daily they practiced what he preached.