Summary: As Christ-followers, our fellowship should be different. Follows the outline of Dare 2 B Different series: Embody His name, Embrace His Mission, Emulate His Word.
DARE 2 B DIFFERENT – In Your Fellowship
Fellowship Defined – Greek ‘koinonia’ – “Joint participation”; common, as in “in common”. “Dear friends, although I was eager to write you about our common salvation…” Jude 1:3 (HCSB)
With the thought of ‘Joint Participation’ in mind, lets see how the concepts of fellowship fit into our basic formula for being different:
I. Embody His Name – Reflect His Character in Our Fellowship
A. Relationship – His character reflected in our relationships
“Therefore, God’s chosen ones, holy and loved, put on heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, accepting one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a complaint against another. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so also you must forgive. Above all, put on love—the perfect bond of unity. And let the peace of the Messiah, to which you were also called in one body, control your hearts. Be thankful. Let the message about the Messiah dwell richly among you, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, and singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, with gratitude in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3:12-16 (HCSB)
1. Fellowship is first and foremost a relationship, not an activity.
2. Any activity that follows should come out of the relationship.
3. Jude 3 above defines our relationship with God; we are all part of a relationship with Him.
4. He shares with us and we relate to Him as His children in the context of that relationship.
B. Believers in a Community
1. In our text the early church was not merely devoting itself to activities, but to a relationship.
2. This relationship produced active sharing in other ways.
II. Embrace His Mission – Make Disciples Through Fellowship
1. We are in fellowship with – partners with – Christ
2. “As for Titus, he is my partner and co-worker serving you; as for our brothers, they are the messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ.” 2 Corinthians 8:23 (HCSB)
3. “I give thanks to my God for every remembrance of you, always praying with joy for all of you in my every prayer, because of your partnership (koinonia) in the gospel from the first day until now.” Philippians 1:3-5 (HCSB)
4. “Therefore, holy brothers and companions in a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the apostle and high priest of our confession.” Hebrews 3:1 (HCSB)
B. Believers are the Principals of His Enterprise
1. The ones who carry out the objective of the enterprise (the Kingdom of God)
2. The objective of this enterprise we call the church is Making Disciples
III. Emulate His Word – Radical Personal Obedience in our Fellowship
1. We are ‘Managers of the Koinonia’ – We maintain the Fellowship
2. It is Christ’s church – we are the managers of it here on earth.
3. Good stewardship stems from recognizing our relationship to Jesus Christ, and recognizing our partnership in Christ’s enterprise here on earth.
4. “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 (HCSB)
5. “For as the body is one and has many parts, and all the parts of that body, though many, are one body—so also is Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. So the body is not one part but many. If the foot should say, “Because I’m not a hand, I don’t belong to the body,” in spite of this it still belongs to the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I’m not an eye, I don’t belong to the body,” in spite of this it still belongs to the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But now God has placed the parts, each one of them, in the body just as He wanted.” 1 Corinthians 12:12-18 (HCSB)