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Summary: ‘Koinonia’ - Fellowship - Acts chapter2 verse 42 - sermon by Gordon Curley PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: gcurley@gcurley.info

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SERMON OUTLINE:

(1). Meeting together

(2). Worshiping Together

(3). Praying together

(4). Sharing together

(5). Learning together

(6). Giving Together

(7). Evangelising Together.

SERMON BODY:

“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.”

• The “They” in this verse;

• Are three thousand people who responded to Peter’s preaching (vs 41);

• Three thousand people became followers of Jesus (Christians),

• And we are told that high on their list of priorities was ‘fellowship’.

Ill:

• Sign on a Church notice board:

• When you were born, your mother brought you to church.

• When you were married, your wife brought you to church.

• When you die, your friends will bring you to church.

• Why not try coming to church on your own sometime'

• TRANSITION:

• Now our the topic I have been asked to speak on today is ‘Fellowship’;

• And fellowship is far more than just attending a Church!

• But fellowship, meeting with other Christians;

• Has to start by being where other believers meet together.

Quote: Dictionary definition of the word ‘Fellowship’:

• The companionship of individuals in a congenial atmosphere and on equal terms:

• e.g. a voracious reader who found fellowship in a book club.

• Friendship; comradeship:

• e.g. a strong fellowship developed among them.

• A close association of friends or equals sharing similar interests:

• e.g. a fellowship of photographers.

Note: There are three key ideas that come out of this:

• FIRST: Fellowship means being a part of a group, a body of people.

• It is opposed to isolation and solitude.

• It is opposed to our present-day independent kind of individualism.

• SECOND: Fellowship means having or sharing with others certain things in common;

• Such as interest, goals, feelings, beliefs, activities, experiences, and concerns.

• THIRD: Fellowship can mean a partnership.

• That involves working together and caring for one another;

• i.e. Like a company of soldiers or members of a family.

TRANSITION: When a person decides to follow Jesus as their Saviour and Lord:

• Church will or should automatically take on a new significance.

• So much so;

• That I would say it is impossible to follow Jesus and not be part of a local Church.

• Because the word Church is never used for a building,

• It always means a collection of people.

• If you are a Christian, you never go to church;

• You are the church!

ill:

• The very first translation of the New Testament from Greek into English:

• Was by William Tyndale in 1526,

• But Tyndale had a translation problem over the Matthew chapter 16 verse 18:

• "Upon this rock I will build my Church".

• Because he did not want people to think that the living church of Jesus Christ:

• Was a building or an institution, the accepted religious establishment.

• So after much thought he ended up translating the words of Jesus this way:

• "Upon this rock I will build my congregation".

• TRANSITION: The Church is always the congregation, the people!

• If you are a Christian, you never go to church, you are the church!

• You need to meet with other Christians and….they need to meet with you!

Ill:

• In the grey dawn of an April day in 1945,

• In the German concentration camp of Flossenburg,

• A pastor by the name of Dietrich Bonhoeffer was executed.

• He was executed by special order of Heinrich Himmler,

• Hitler’s executioner.

• He had been arrested two years before, and over that period of two years,

• He had been transferred from prison, to prison, to prison.

• From Tegel, to Berlin, to Buchenwald, to Schönburg,

• Finally to Flossenburg.

• And in the moving of Bonhoeffer from place to place,

• He lost all contact with the outside world.

• Everyone that he knew was severed from him.

• He lost, according to his own testimony, the most precious possession he had,

• And that was fellowship!

• TRANSITION:

• If you are a Christian, you never go to church, you are the church!

• You need to meet with other Christians and….they need to meet with you!

Note: Christian fellowship is choice you make:

• We noted that the dictionary defines fellowship as;

• "friendly association with others; companionship."

• Christian fellowship, then, involves friendly association with other Christians.

• It means you choose to spend time with;

• And build relationships with like-minded people.

In Acts chapter 2 verse 42:

• We read that one of the four things the early church devoted itself to was “fellowship.”

• Fellowship was a very important part of why they met together.

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