To evangelize with power, we need to provide for our needy brothers and sisters.


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“Those who believed shared all things in common; they would sell their property and goods, dividing everything on the basis of each one’s need”. This communal sharing of property and goods was not just an ideal but something very real. “All who owned property or houses sold them and donated the proceeds”.

Can you imagine this kind of radical sharing of possessions that the early Christians practiced? Those who had something gave it. Those who needed something received it.

Thus, the Scriptures are able to say, “There was no needy person among them.”

We often forget that most people in the world today are needy and poor. We even forget that some of us, with all our modern conveniences, are rich by comparison.

Isn’t it time that we get rid of all our “extra stuff” and keep only what we really need?

This is certainly what the early church appeared to do – they did not hold tightly to their possessions and shared everything they had. In our world of excess, we find that hard to comprehend. But these were a people who were focused upon spiritual things.

Why isn’t the Church today sharing “all things in common”? Are our times different? If anything, our world today needs more than ever the witness of communal sharing. When we become one in heart, mind, and possessions, we begin to be one as Jesus and the Father are one. Then the world will believe that the Father has sent the Son.  Then, with power, we will bear “witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus”.

The early Christian communities believed Jesus was coming again very soon, so what they had in this earthly life didn’t matter too much – it would pass. Are we able to detach ourselves from our ‘stuff’? Are we willing to share the wealth we have with others? In the words of the psalm: Is God truly our refuge and strength, the God in whom we trust?

Sharing all things in common is so powerful because it is so difficult. It is close to impossible to share deeply and practically with others. Our pride and selfishness militate against this. Furthermore, in our highly secularized culture, individualism, independence, and privacy are almost gods, so sharing all things is out of the question. Therefore, when we share all things in common in our culture, we make quite a statement. People will be challenged to call us crazy or to believe in Jesus’ resurrection.

To evangelize with power, we need to provide for our needy brothers and sisters. We do this not by raising money but by having a new, redeemed attitude toward material possessions. This attitude results from God doing a miracle of unity among us. Without accepting and living a divine unity from God, we cannot proceed with the Christian life. Therefore, answer Jesus’ prayer for unity. Be one in a miraculous way. Begin to be a Christian.

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