HomeLUMINAvol. 21 no. 2 (2010)

Acts 4:32-37: The Communal Life of the Early Church as a Panacean Measure For Reducing Poverty among Christians in Nigeria

A.j. Adelakun

Discipline: Social, Theological, Philosophical, Anthropological, Natural and Applied Sciences



This paper attempts to contribute to the on-going search for solutions to the problems posed by poverty among Christians in Nigeria by using exegetical methodology to study Acts 4:32-37. It notes that poverty is not a new problem among Christians as the first century church also encountered it. The absence of the apostles from their home town, Galilee, contributed to their experience of poverty in Jerusalem. None of them was a native or a resident of Jerusalem. Hence, the instruction of Jesus that they should stay in Jerusalem without any means of livelihood most likely affected the early church economically. However, the church was able to manage the situation so that nobody was in need as it is presented by Luke in the text. Likewise, the paper notes that poverty is more rampant among Christians and non-Christians in rural areas than urban areas in Nigeria. This is due to the fact that in Nigeria most rural areas in the country lack social amenities. The paper is of the view that the Christian church in the country is doing little or nothing to combat poverty among its members unlike the early church which took certain steps to fight it.