Jesus offers fullness, and vitality and energy and dynamism, and life. We would expect all followers of Christ to be described similarly. But the words often used to describe the collective body of Christ’s followers (the church) by non-Christians are: boring, dull, outdated, backwards, irrelevant, mediocre, coma, sleepy, etc.
5 These men went on ahead and waited for us at Troas. 6 But we sailed from Philippi after the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and five days later joined the others at Troas, where we stayed seven days. 7 On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. Paul spoke to the people and, because he intended to leave the next day, kept on talking until midnight. 8 There were many lamps in the upstairs room where we were meeting. 9 Seated in a window was a young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead. 10 Paul went down, threw himself on the young man and put his arms around him. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “He’s alive!” 11 Then he went upstairs again and broke bread and ate. After talking until daylight, he left. 12 The people took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted.
Verse 7 in the passage above suggests two things the church at Troas did differently.
- They worshiped on the first day of the week (Sunday).
- They worshiped at a different time (until midnight).
What was the justification for breaking with tradition?
Pragmatism - Paul was leaving the next day.
- Like the early church, the church today needs to be flexible, adaptable, and willing to change.
- Being flexible does not mean compromising the integrity of our faith. It does mean that we should evaluate the effectiveness of our ministry and discern (really) why we do what we do.
- Our commitment to Jesus and his calling must supersede any commitment to our preferences and our way of doing things.
- It's normal for amazing things to happen in a church that adapts (changes) and is committed to Christ.