Dive Deeper

Unstoppable (Part 11)

Rhordan Wicks


“Serve” – if you have been a Christian or attended church for a while, you will find that church is synonymous to serving – whether it is in a ministry within the four walls of church, or outside of it. Why is serving such a huge, if not, core aspect of the Christian walk? Is it a prerequisite for being a part of a church? Is it similar to volunteering? Does everyone need to serve, or is it just for a select few?

In the 11th part of our Unstoppable series, we will learn about the heart of service and why all of the early church wanted to give themselves to serving.


  1. What is your first response when you hear the church’s call for all partners to serve in a ministry? What sort of feelings and emotions come to mind when you think about serving? Share them with your group.

  2. Read Acts 6:1.

    a. Share, within your experience, a positive result of growth in any community. What about the less positive results?

    b. When grievances arise within a community, is it good to vocalise them? Why or why not?

    c. Read about the cultural differences between the Hellenists and Hebrews in the appendix below. When it comes to gathering as a cross-cultural community, conflict can arise unintentionally because each culture comes with their deeply rooted value systems that might rub off against the other in the wrong way.

    i. Share in your group any noteworthy experiences that you have had with someone of a different culture.

    ii. What does God say about different cultures dwelling together in the context of His eternal plan? Read Revelation 5:9-10 and Revelation 7:9.

    iii. With this in mind, how should we regard those in our church and Christian communities that come from a different educational, national, racial or cultural background as us?

  3. Read Acts 6:2-4.

    a. When one compares a practical service (serving tables) to a spiritual service (ministry of the Word), it is easy to assume that the latter service is more “important” in God’s, and the church’s eyes. Yet, the word “serve” that is translated from the Greek word diakoneō (διακονέω), is similar to the word used later on in verse 6 – diakonia (διακονία), referring to ministry of the word – that is, preaching.

    i. What does this tell you about both practical service and spiritual service unto the Lord? Read Colossians 3:17 to further understand what scripture says about service to God.

    ii. Of the disciples called to serve tables was Stephen, who is described in further detail from verse 8 onwards. Read and reflect on his traits, the fruit of his devotion, and the final moments of his life in the rest of the chapter. Then compare it with his very first call to the simple task of ‘serving tables’. How can this encourage you in your own faith journey, in context of wherever God has placed you in right now?

    b. What are the attributes of the men called to serve tables? (See verse 3) What does this tell you about what minimum “requirements” a believer should possess to serve?

  4. Read Acts 6:7.

    a. What is the fruit that results from the church’s decision? This can give us an insight into what we as a church can do to see the gospel preached and more people giving their lives to Christ.

    b. Pay attention to the portion of the verse: “and the word of God continued to increase.”

    i. Reflecting back on Acts 6:2, what do you think could have happened if the apostles reduced, or gave up their preaching and teaching to serve tables?

    ii. Read Acts 8:4. If the scattered church did not know the word of God well, would they have managed to spread the Gospel with confidence in the areas that they were scattered to? What does this tell us about the importance of teachers, leaders, and preachers? Take the time to appreciate these people in your church and Christian community.

    c. With this in mind, reflect on:

    i. The importance of knowing, and staying faithful and focused to our God-given assignments, even when there is a pull or obligation for us to drop it to address other ‘good activities’.

    ii. The different parts of the church body: Read 1 Corinthians 12:12-27.

    d. How would you pray for the church today? What will you do with it?


Being saved into the Kingdom gives us the privilege to be a royal priesthood and eternal companion unto Jesus, that we get to “proclaim the praises of Him” and partner Him in His Kingdom work. As such, serving God and man is not a mere religious obligation, but a call for every follower of Christ to join Him on a great adventure.

Wrap up this curriculum discussion with a prayer of recommitment to serving God, and ask Him how you can partner Him in His mission to bring heaven on earth.

“Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”” – Isaiah 6:8 NKJV


“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light;” – 1 Peter 2:9 NKJV



What is meant by “Hellenistic”? Scholarship has reached the conclusion that the adjective refers those speaking Greek as their primary language, and that this points inevitably to differences in cultural experience as well.Since at this stage in the Church’s growth only Jews were members (the first Gentiles join in Acts 10:47 and 11:20-21), these were Jewish believers in Christ for whom Greek was their primary language. Martin Hengel’s proposal has been widely accepted, that there were in Jerusalem several thousand former Diaspora Jews, that is, Jews who had lived most of their lives in Greek-speaking cities and towns in other lands, and had returned for a variety of reasons to Jerusalem. Acts 6:9 supports the point with its reference to a synagogue of former slaves from Diaspora cities that have gathered together in Jerusalem for worship and community. He suggests that the most characteristic reason for a move to Jerusalem would have been retirement; if so, then it is likely that widowed women would have represented a disproportionately high percentage of that demographic. A significant number of these Hellenists, then, had responded to the gospel and had joined the Church.

What was the problem reported in Acts 6? It was actually two-fold. Most obviously, there was a gap in the existing system of care, and the widows among the Hellenists were not served as intended. But Luke’s mention of the “murmuring” of the Hellenists against the Hebrews indicates a second, related problem. Some versions translate this as a “complaint,” though the Greek term implies a misdirected rather than a straight-forward protest (compare John 6:41, 43). It recalls the “murmuring” of the Israelites in the desert (e.g., Exod. 15:24) and insinuates underlying tensions.

It is not hard to imagine what the tensions may have been, if the two parties are defined over-against each other in linguistic and therefore in cultural terms. A Jew from Alexandria, arriving in Jerusalem after a life of tensions in a sometimes hostile Graeco-Roman environment, might discover that life in the Holy Land was less than ideal, and that the locals seemed to lack sympathy, and the sophistication of their counterparts back home. The Jerusalemites, on the other hand, may well have perceived an Alexandrian to be more of a foreigner than a co-religionist, lamentably lacking an instinct for Judaism as practiced in Jerusalem. It has been further suggested that the Hellenists would probably have gravitated towards neighborhoods of their own, as is the case with so many groups of immigrants—and in this case, perhaps not the cheaper neighborhoods. This would have impeded understanding between the groups, and it may have been a factor in the actual neglect of the widows if they lived in an area less convenient for delivery of goods. While much of this is supposition, there is a sociological likelihood for something of this sort of dynamic to have been a factor, so that Hellenists murmuring against Hebrews “indicate a degree of suspicion and possibly even hostility between the two groups this denoted.” In short, Acts 6 depicts already the first of many cultural clashes that would challenge the life of the Church.