Acts 2:45 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 2:45, NIV: "They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need."

Acts 2:45, ESV: "And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need."

Acts 2:45, KJV: "And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need."

Acts 2:45, NASB: "and they would sell their property and possessions and share them with all, to the extent that anyone had need."

Acts 2:45, NLT: "They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need."

Acts 2:45, CSB: "They sold their possessions and property and distributed the proceeds to all, as any had need."

What does Acts 2:45 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The early church is characterized by a few key features: they listen to the apostles' teaching, they eat and live together, they pray together (Acts 2:42) and they share all they own (Acts 2:44). The new believers had come from all over the Roman Empire (Acts 2:9–11) and need housing and food. The Holy Spirit works within the members of the new church to make sure everyone has enough.

Wealth is not bad, but wealth without a purpose, withheld from those in need, is worthless (1 John 3:17). Wealth held for its own sake is an idol that keeps us from God (Mark 10:17–22). Jesus taught the disciples that it is better to accumulate treasures in heaven than wealth on earth (Matthew 6:19–21). Zacchaeus understood this. When faced with Jesus, his desire to cheat people and hoard money vanished (Luke 19:1–10). Following Jesus frees sinners from all kinds of bondage.

Ananias and Sapphira prove the point. They sell part of their property and give the money to Peter but tell him they sold all of it (Acts 5:1–11). Peter doesn't condemn their desire to keep the property; he condemns their lie about their sacrifice. They prove that "the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs" (1 Timothy 6:10). It's unclear if their love of money drove their lies or if they were driven by pride, but it cost them their lives.

In the early church, as it grows and spreads, generosity grows and spreads with it. When the church in Jerusalem is faced with famine, the church in Antioch will support them (Acts 11:27–30). Later, churches in Macedonia and Achaia will come to the rescue (Romans 15:25–26; 1 Corinthians 16:1–4). Jesus gave His life for us and promises to reward us when we give of what we have (Luke 6:38).