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God's Not Mad at You
The family knows the family’s secrets.

The family knows the family’s secrets.

JULY 26, 2021

/ Programs / Key Life / The family knows the family’s secrets.

Steve Brown:
The family knows the family’s secrets. Let’s talk on Key Life.

Matthew Porter:
Key Life is all about God’s radical grace, grace that has dirt under his fingernails and laugh lines on its face. If you want the Bible to be a book of rules, you may want to stop listening now, but if you’re hungry for the truth, that’ll make you free. Welcome to Key Life.

Steve Brown:
Thank you Matthew. I hope you had a great weekend and hope your pastor’s sermon was as good as my pastor’s sermon. If you’re just joining us, we’re studying the book of Acts and we’re going to do this until Jesus returns. This is the long book, when I started it, I forgot that. But I’m not going to hurry. I’m your tour director and we’re going through the book of Acts and I’m pointing out points of interest, as we go along. And we’re taking our time because this is an important book in the Bible. It has to do with beginnings. It has to do with foundations. It has to do with a way we were. And so we’re studying the book of Acts and we’re up to the second chapter of Acts and the final paragraph. And we’re talking about family and its importance, then and now. Before we study, let’s pray. Father, we come into your presence and we’re thankful for so much. You’ve been so kind and so gentle to us. But one of the really good things you’ve done is that you’ve made us a part of a family, your family, remind us where we are in the family, remind us and teach us to be the family. Remind us that you’re our Father, as well as our God. Father, you know, everybody who’s listening to this broadcast and you know when it’s hard and when it’s not, and we’re so glad that you’re sovereign over everything in our lives and we worship you. And we pray for the one who teaches on this broadcast, that you would forgive him his sins, because they are many, we would see Jesus and him only. And we pray in Jesus name. Amen. If you were with us last week, as we began the study of this last paragraph. And I’m going to read it to you in a minute, you know that we’re talking about family. And, you know that this paragraph follows Pentecost. It follows some amazing and wonderful things that are going on. And then this seems so pedestrian, and so of little consequence, until you look at it closely and you begin to see that God is saying to his people, this is the way you do it. This is important. Listen up. And this is what Luke writes, I’ll begin at the 43rd verse.

And fear came upon every soul and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day, those who were being saved.

Listen, there are six or seven, maybe even eight things that are worth talking about in what I just read to you. About what it means to be the family of God and how important it is, now last week we saw that belief is the basis of family, that’s verse 44. Those who believed, and sometimes we forget that there’s some basic verities of the Christian faith that make us a part of the same family. If you’ve been forgiven, if you’re going to live forever, if you have a Christology that shines, if you believe the Bible, those are the things that bind us together and make us family. And then we saw that necessity is the mother of invention, but it’s also the mother of family. We live in a dark time and people don’t like us. We don’t have the power we once had or the money we once had. And we got to do it the way Jesus did it. And that is with family. I really believe that necessity of our time is a good thing, even though it hurts and scares us, because it drives us to each other. Let me give you a principle, and it’s a part of our study of Acts. And I don’t think I’ve said this, Acts 1:8 didn’t happen till Acts 8:1 happened. Write that down, because it’s important in what it teaches us. Acts 1:8 didn’t happen, go into all the world, didn’t happen until Acts 8:1 happened. Now we’re not at Acts 8:1, but that’s the persecution that took place in the church. And because of the persecution, there was family. Because of the persecution, they were spread out all over the world. God uses the dark times to create family and to create ministry. And so, we have noticed last week and talked about it a long time, that necessity is the impetus of real brotherhood. And then we saw last week, finally, that worship is the glue of family, the glue of brotherhood and sisterhood. That’s why we’re here. You know, we’re here to do a lot of things. Jesus said we needed to clothe the naked and visit the prisons and feed the hungry. He talked about the importance of, the world and being sent into the world. And those things are really important, but at heart, we’re a worshiping community. And worship isn’t just something you put on the back burner or you fight about, that’s crazy. Worship is who we are, it’s why we were created and in the midst of a dark and troubling time, in the midst of a time of great fear and anxiety, in the midst of a time of great social change, there is a community and it is a worshiping community. And that worshiping community is the reason we are family. And I want to talk more about that, but I’ve said about everything I know about it, so I probably ought to move onto something else. You ought to note that, and if you’re accounting, this is number four. I want you to see in this closing paragraph of this second chapter, that openness is the fuel of real brotherhood. Please note here that these people had needs. And they express those needs to each other. And then they shared meeting the needs of each other. At the very heart of the family are the family secrets. That’s what theology is, theology isn’t something we preach on a street corner, theology and doctrine are the family secrets of the people of God, freedom and election and sovereignty. All of those things are important, but their family secrets. The message that we give to the world is Jesus loves me, this I know for the Bible tells me so. Van Til, he was one of the finest theological minds of our time, who was a teacher for so many years at Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia, where I sometimes taught. And I met Van Til. Toward the end of his life. I was speaking for the graduation at Westminster, and on the platform, the professors were sitting and I was sitting next to Van Til, and I shook his hand and I didn’t wash my hand for at least two weeks after I did that. I mean, evidential apologetics, as opposed to traditional apologetics. I mean, he was incredible. I mean, his teaching was so profound that it would blow you away, but you know, do you know what Van Til did on Sunday afternoon? Wrote theology, no he didn’t. Thought about his students and advised them, no he didn’t. Prepared sermons, no that’s not what he did, you know what he did on Sunday afternoon? He went down to one of the parks in Philadelphia with a Bible, and he told people that Jesus loved them. That blows me away. I mean, that is so good. So, the family secrets or the family secrets, we ought to keep them to ourselves, but there’s a broader meaning of family secrets. And that is this, that my personal secrets are to be shared with my family, because those secrets are the places where I hurt, where I rejoice, where I’m afraid, where I’ve sinned. And I need you to tell me the gospel, or I will be discouraged. God put us together, because he knew that we needed to be open. In Galatians 6:2, the apostle Paul says.

We should bare one another’s burdens.

And that’s cool, but you can’t bare unless you share. And that’s what the family does. A family knows where the family members hurt. A family knows where a family member needs help. A family is open. You think about that. Amen.

Matthew Porter:
Thank you Steve. That was Steve brown, continuing to teach us from the book of Acts. We covered a lot of things today, but I really liked his point that Acts 1:8 didn’t happen until acts 8:1 happened. Great stuff. Hope you’ll join us again tomorrow. Do you like to read? I do. In fact, there’s a place in my house where I read a few times a day. Are you with me? Cause that’s, that’s about as far as I’m going to carry that one. Alright. So, if that’s you too, then may I suggest an addition to that library? The 2021 edition of Key Life Magazine, this newest version features a wonderful article from Steve called You Can’t Fix It. You’ll also discover pieces from Robin DeMurga, Chad West, and a new Key Life voice, Chris Wachter. It’s all in the 2021 edition of Key Life Magazine. And we would love to send it to you for free. So call 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail Steve@keylife.org and ask for the magazine. If you’d like to mail a request, send it to

Key Life Network

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