I’m sure you have thought time by time: “We need to be more like the first century church!”
I’m sure what we are thinking is “we need to have the same zeal and love for Christ as those first Christians had”
Let me give you some of my reflections towards that.
We shouldn’t compare ourselves with them, to put us to shame. We live in different times and have different background as Christians, so it would be unfair to take out one element and make it “the only thing”. Why?
If you want to copy the first christians, you should be ready to dare to pray for the dead to rise and paralytics to walk normally.
If you want really to copy the first Christians, you should go and live under dictatorial regimes not with your identity, but as someone born in that country.
If you want to copy the first Christians, you should be ready not to have nice church building and distribute those building funds to help the poor.
If you want to copy the first Christians, you should live frugally and share what you have with the rest of the church.
If you want to copy the first Christians, you should be prepared to be persecuted by the non-Christian government, without trying to change those in government, but praying for their salvation.
If you want to copy the first Christians, you will have less complicated church structures but functional, where leaders are not selected based on the divinity school they finished but from their character and good report in the community of faith.
If you want to copy the first Christians, you would help the widow and the orphans. Many of us, don’t do much on social welfare because we are blessed having a structure in place that helps the needy according to government guidelines. You need to go back in a time without hospitals, orphanages, social services to be a copy-paste.
So, be careful how you compare yourself with. We should be what God wants us to be in this time. Many Christians live with the church of the past and the church of the future, but they forget the church of the now.
I confess that it is not easy, to incarnate in society and changing the society from within. We are in the world, but not of the world. Christ is the same today as he was in the past, we should be his today’s body, hands and feet.
Love God, Love the neighbor and normally you are going to be the church of today.