Article - How Does the New Testament Define “Fellowship” (part 2)
From the previous article we learned that spiritual fellowship is, first and foremost, a “sharing in common” with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 1:9; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Philippians 2:1; 1 John 1:3). In this article we will establish that, second, spiritual fellowship is a “sharing in common” with other faithful Christians. The New Testament teaches that Christians are in constant fellowship with one another because we are all part of the household of faith (1 John 1:3, 7; Galatians 6:10; 1 Timothy 3:15). We enjoy this fellowship with one another when we as faithful brethren worship God together (Acts 2:42), such as in the “sharing” of the blood and body of Jesus in partaking of the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 10:16) or in “sharing” in the service of evangelism or benevolence through contributions, whether it be in aiding evangelists (2 Corinthians 11:7-9; Philippians 1:5; 4:15) or helping needy Christians (1 Corinthians 16:1-2; 2 Corinthians 8:4; 9:13; Romans 15:26). Faithful Christians are to extend the right hand of “fellowship” to other faithful Christians (Galatians 2:9) and are to work together as “partners” in the kingdom of God’s dear Son (2 Corinthians 8:23; Philemon 1:17). Instead of printing “A friendly, loving, caring church” in your church bulletins, just “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). “Let love be without hypocrisy….Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another…serving the Lord…continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion” (Romans 12:9-16).
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