“...the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:42)

We all know the church has entered the age of promotionalism – the age of drum-beating. We constantly hear of THE BEST, THE MOST, THE BIGGEST, THE GREATEST: any triumph in one congregation gets the publicity experts at work to try and top that in some other congregation. The trumpets sound when some activity is successful.

We’ve said that to call attention to the fact that this very atmosphere is foreign to the New Testament. In the text cited above, we find that about 3,000 were baptized on the day of Pentecost. The interesting thing about this is: it never was mentioned again in God’s Word! Never once! We wonder why! We have the rest of Acts, twenty one other letters, and we have seven different congregations addressed in the book of Revelation, and never once did any of the inspired writers ask, “Why can’t 3,000 more be baptized like they had on Pentecost?” It wasn’t that many years and many congregations were yet covered in the New Testament, for the events of Acts 2 take place in the very FIRST congregation. It wasn’t that no apostle knew of the events of that day, for twelve apostles were there at the time. It wasn’t that the apostles didn’t want the church to grow. It wasn’t that they weren’t interested in baptisms, for the Great Commission put them into that business (Mark 16:15-16).

Again we wonder: why wasn’t the success in Acts 2 mentioned in each and every epistle? Why didn’t the inspired writers take advantage of this whooping it up before all other congregations? Now, notice that this fits in with the low-profile given to programs and successes in the entire New Testament. While every letter deals with the importance of study, growth, increasing in godly attributes, and the need for improvement in every spiritual area, very little in the way of publicity is given to actual circumstances of sums and numbers, and certainly not in any way to “beat the drums” before the brotherhood. We do not believe the early church wanted second-rate performance, but we note they also didn’t whoop and yell about BIGGEST, GREATEST, LARGEST, TREMENDOUS...they didn’t even mention that they had 3,000 to be baptized on Pentecost! We can learn something from this in the age of the promotional, sensational, and publicity!

Bill Jackson