Tuesday of Easter II – Acts 4:32-35

32 Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. 33 And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold 35 and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

When I was newly in the ministry, my parish participated in founding a small food bank along with several other Christian churches in town. One of my parishioners, Marley, was newly retired at that point and he jumped into this ministry with both feet. I was serving in Bountiful, Utah at the time, a community which was over 90% LDS. Marley had been raised Mormon and was in fact related to a significant portion of the community. This gave him an access which most Lutherans did not have in that town. Soon our little foodbank was getting contributions from all the grocery stores in town. Marley had talked to his friends and opened doors for us.  

Yesterday we prayed that our lives would confess that Jesus is Lord and God. When He rose from the dead, He rose as a human being. That fact renders all things human terribly important. You might wonder why this passage from Acts is included on this day. But it belongs here. The early Christian community was confessing the lordship and divinity of Jesus this way. He is human, therefore human needs belong to Him too. When we feed the hungry or care for the needy, we are caring for the singular humanity in which Jesus participates. As Jesus says, when you give a cup of cold water to a child in His name, you give it to Him.

There are many “isms” which would dominate and order our lives today. Some appeal to socialism. Others appeal to capitalism. This little event in Acts 4 looks a little socialist to some. Was it a sort of commune? I do not think so. It was Christian people looking out for the needy and poor among them. It was neither capitalist nor socialist. It was confessing Christ as Lord and God. Christ continues to call us to such confession. He participates in this humanity. That fact has not changed. I look over my city today, another community, and I see hundreds of homeless people living in temporary shelters along the roads and in open lots. To what confession of Christ’s lordship and divinity are we being called today?

Scroll to Top