There are many things that I admire about the earliest Christians. I am grateful for their humble service, their fervent teaching, and their commitment to spreading the gospel near and far. As I consider their faithful witness in the midst of government persecution and societal pressure, I am in awe of their collective sacrifice.
I also recognize that, given how much we have to be thankful for, it is easy for us to romanticize our spiritual forebears, forgetting that they, too, were fallible humans. As Ernest Best reminds us, the church of old “was not a group of impeccable saints but one of sinners in the process of being saved and of thinking through the meaning of their faith.”  And so it is for us.
As we examine the emergence of the Christian faith, and consider the future of discipleship in Jesus’ name, we pray for the courage to take our place in this unfolding legacy. May we always remember that God is with us. Let us rejoice and give thanks.
Peace and best wishes,