Job One Must Get Done

Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution. And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables. Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” And what they said pleased the whole gathering, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. These they set before the apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands on them.

And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. Acts 6:1-7.

When Jesus fed the five thousand, He was not instituting a new feeding program. It was incidental to His main mission: seeking and saving the lost by preaching the kingdom of God. So it should be of no surprise to us that His disciples would make sure that they kept doing what Jesus sent them to do, and not get sidetracked by something that could be delegated.

That mission is still in effect. But now it is largely confined to an hour or two every week in a building that consumes many times those hours for its upkeep. This is not to say that it might not be appropriate to own dedicated buildings for church purposes, but we should at least examine our priorities to see if we are executing job one. If the word of God is not increasing and disciples are not multiplying, an audit might be in order.