Nov
15
2016

Have you got the doctrine to match your experience?

 
Like many people, I have read Acts 1 and 2 many times and I can almost recite the story of the early church from memory, but recently my mind was drawn to Peter’s leadership and words during this period. Just to recap, this story takes place against the backdrop of Jesus’ resurrection and ascension 40 days earlier. The whole city had been turned upside down with the sequence of events. When Jesus died, the scriptures record that there was an earthquake, those who had died were brought back to life, darkness covered the earth, the veil in the temple was torn in two.
 
Each of these experiences alone would have been a significant talking point but all of them together – I guess could be called an explosive talking point. You can just imagine the daily discussions everywhere!
 
Then to crown it all, Jesus appeared to them for 40 days and was teaching His disciples. You can imagine what they said, “Did He really die? Is this the end of the world? Is this a miracle from God? Maybe they shouldn’t have killed Him. What’s all this about?” This would certainly have kept the conversation and discussions going.
Then came the day of Pentecost, accompanied by tongues of fire, mighty rushing wind, people speaking in various languages – people must have been wondering when all of this would stop and normality would resume? You get the sense that it was one event after another.
 
Against this backdrop, it would have been easy to focus on all the ‘experiences’ and get caught up in the themes, theories and hypotheses of the period but there is something that Peter did, that serves as a lesson to us. He continued to point people back to the scriptures and not to focus on the experiences, explaining that the experiences were a result of doctrine. Peter wanted to show people that everything that was happening was in line with God’s word.
 
Let’s consider a few examples:
 
Acts 1:15-20 – the appointment of another apostle – Psalm 109:8
Acts 2:16-21 – the outpouring of the Holy Spirit – Joel 2:28-32
Acts 2:25-28 – the resurrection of Christ – Psalm 16:8-11
Acts 2:29-31 – eternal Lordship of Christ – Psalm 132:11-12, Psalm 16:10
Acts 2:34-35 – Jesus seated at God’s right hand – Psalm 110:1-2
Acts 2:39 – promise of the Holy Spirit – Isaiah 44:3, 59:21
 
I have deliberately listed these scriptures and their references to make a point. Within Christian circles, we are at a stage where we want to and are experiencing the bible. We talk of the move of the Spirit, being presence carriers, glory carriers, bringing heaven to earth, representing the fullness of Christ, signs and miracles, doing only what Jesus is doing and so on. This is good and we should desire this and a whole lot more, but like Peter, let us make sure it is grounded in doctrine.
 
It is interesting that Acts 2:42 says the early church continued in the Apostles’ doctrine. In other words, they were not led by their experiences. 1 Timothy encourages us to honour those who labour in the word and doctrine. Remember, it’s not all about experiences (and yes, we do need to experience the Word) but let’s make sure that our experience has a biblical basis. In addition to our experience, let’s continue to labour in God’s word ad make sure that all we do is rooted in the scriptures.
 
So until I appear again in your inbox with more insight from the scriptures, stay blessed
 
Ola

About the Author: Ola Aroyehun

Ola Aroyehun editor of The Christian Business and Professional Magazine: a magazine dedicated to helping Christians apply biblical principles to their professional lives.

Facebook Page Template 4

Sign up for our regular newsletter to be kept informed of all future developments, as it is an exciting time for us.

Complete the form, below to receive our newsletter and a free ebook on how to walk by revelation and not understanding

Thank you for visiting our page

Categories

Archives Articles