The New Normal – Together

Pastor Phil Derstine


Growing Life Together

  • Acts 2:42-47 (NIV) “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of breadand to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts.  They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people.  And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
  • John 13:35 “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another”


1. Teaching

  • Prov. 16:16 “How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! And to get understanding rather than silver!”
  • Hosea 4:8 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…”
  • II Timothy 2:15 “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightlydividing the word of truth.”
  • New Testament Church – Intimate Worship, Natural Conversions, Intentional Spiritual Growth, Servanthood, Sacrificial Giving, Spiritual Friendships, Family Faith
  • Survey: Those who attend church regularly – Lower blood pressure, happier outlooks, better marriages, less divorce, and longer lives.


2. Fellowship

  • Hebrews 13:15 “By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name. (16) But to do good and to communicate [Koinonia] forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.”
  • I Peter 4:9 “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.”
  • Proverbs 27:17 “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”  
  • Most Facebook Friends – Acquaintances. 
  • Actual Friend – Someone I’ve had a meal with or has visited my home.
  • Real Friend – Someone who would drive me to the airport at 6:00 AM.
  • True Friend – Someone who would bail me out of jail.   
  • Proverbs 17:17 “A friend loves at all times…”
  • 3 Levels of Friendship
  • Comfort Zone - “If it’s convenient, fun, rewarding, affordable…”
  • Sacrificial - Requires giving up something
  • Faith Level – Based on obedience to the Word, “What Would Jesus Do?”


3. Prayer

  • James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.  The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”
  • Job 42:10 “The Lord turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before.”
  • Authentic Christianity 
  • Relationship NOT Religion, People NOT Institutions
  •  Practicing Your Faith, Ministering To Others
  •  Freedom to Worship openly…  to create… to innovate… to succeed
  • God ministering through YOU, Your God-given gifts & callings, “God Ideas” - Vision
  •  Interns (Def.): Advanced students or graduates gaining supervised practical experience.


4. Breaking of Bread

  • I Corinthians 10:16 “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ?  The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? (17) For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.”
  • Encourage one another (Hebrews 3:13, 10:25)
  • Admonish one another (Colossians 3:16, Romans 15:14)
  • Confess your sins to one another (James 5:16)
  • Forgive one another (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:13)
  • Accept one another (Romans 14:1, 15:7)
  • Serve one another (Galatians 5:13, Romans 12:10)
  • Build up one another (I Thessalonians 5:11)
  • Be hospitable to one another (I Peter 4:9)