Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Participating in Christ's Body


"We love each other and cherish the fellowship of God's people."

"Fellowship" is the common translation of the Greek word koinonia (it's where we get the name "Koin" for our fellowship hall). Out of the 19 times the word appears in the New Testament, the NASB translates the word as "fellowship" twelve times. Twice it's rendered as "contribution," twice as "participation," and thrice as "sharing." As we dwell on this, we can first understand--quite simply--that fellowship is more than "hanging out." It's deeper than simply existing in the same space with others for a select amount of time.

So, drawing on these translations, perhaps an angle we could take at this is that "fellowship" is most properly understood as "participating by contributing and sharing."

What do we participate in? We participate in community, existing as the conglomerate body of Christ. Together, we function as separate, distinct, individual members acting as one unified body. We join together to live out the principles and precepts given to all those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. We engage in the works that God saved us for, the works He has called us to.

What and how do we contribute? We contribute our "time, talent, and treasure." This means we make ourselves available to the Lord's service in the way we care for one another in friendship, devotion, counseling, mentoring, serving, teaching, loving, comforting, and giving. We care for, submit to, and bear with one another. We accept and prefer one another, encouraging everyone in the grace, mercy, patience, and kindness of the Lord. We speak the truth in love, admonishing one another with thankfulness in our hearts to God. We see each other as teammates and co-laborers, as brothers and sisters, provoking us to provide for one another however the Lord sees fit.

What and how do we share? We share the confession of faith, that Jesus is our great God and Savior (1 Timothy 3:16, Titus 2:13). We share not by regarding our lives as precious to ourselves (Acts 20:24), but rather, with humility of mind, considering one another as more important than ourselves (Philippians 2:3). We open our lives up to one another for the betterment of all and the glory of God. We see things as "we"--not "I," "me," or "you."

The fellowship well runs deep. It is hard to imagine how we could have spiritual life without it. In God's goodness, He has given us one another--the body of Christ--so that we can grow in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ (Ephesians 4:15).

1 comment:

  1. You are very lucky to have a church, in which you do not forsake the Gathering of the assembly. Because here in Miami florida, it's very difficult to find a good church that teaches sound biblical doctrine. That teaches prophecy, which is very important. Which convicts you, makes you squirm in your seat, which Saves The Sinner from going to hell. A good shepherd, will always remember that he will be held to a much higher accountability on the day of judgment, than others.