Summary: The qualities of a believer that demonstarte that they are part of The Fellowship.
Perpendicularity: Proof of the Fellowship -- 1 John 4:1-21
1. Strange English word: Perpendicularity -- Moral Uprightness, Being of one kind, class or group; close association.
2. Common Greek word: KOINONIA -- To have in common
A. Old English word: Fellowship -- The state of being joined by reason of being of one kind, class or group.
B. Webster says fellowship is a community of activity, interest and feeling.
C. Context determines how the translators showed the relationship of this word to the Christian faith: Communication, communion, contribution, distribution, fellowship, sharing, participation and partnership are all used to translate the word KOINONIA to show how we are associated with each other.
3. Just because we sing, " all one people we" does not make it so.
A. Two cats thrown over a clothsline with their tails tied together are in union with each other and they are more or less perpindicular but do they have unity?
B. Men living in close quarters, following a common schedule , wearing the same clothes with the same monogram "P" for prisoner in close association but I don’t think that you could say that they have unity or fellowship.
C. Before the demise of the Berlin Wall two men sat on the wall fishing. The man on the west German side was catching one fish after another and finally the East German fisherman asked what he thought the reason was that he wasn’tr catching fish and the west German was being they were using the same bait and fishing in the same hole. The west German replied, " The fish on your side are afraid to open their mouths. " Communism stated that every person should have equal shares and opportunities but in practice it didn’t work out that way.
D.An auction is a place where people are all gathered for a common purpose and talk friendly but work against each other when the bidding starts’
4. How about the church?
Are we tied together by tradition and fight whenever our fancies hit the clothsline or do we strive to honor opinion and seek matters of faith? Do we have fellowship or do we just sit close to each other? Do we follow a routine or are we living a life? Do we talk about unity or do we practice it?
5. Many out there today that claim to have exclusive truth and will share it with those who will send them money.
A. Abe Lincoln -- " If you call a dog’s tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have? Four; just because you call something a leg doesn’t make it a leg."
B. Beware of those who call what they do normal Christian behavior when what they do can not be backed by Scripture or only found if distorted or taken out of context.
6. The Apostle John says that we must test the spirits - Why? 1 John 4:1
"Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world."
A. Beware of the Prophet$ or is it Profit$ -- They ask others to sacrifice while they live luxoriously.
B. Beware of False Teachers -- Speak contrary to the Word of God.
C. Watch out for Hirelings -- Say what will keep them employed not what is true, right and good.
D. Examine Angels of light -- Appear righteous but are not.
E. Inform the Misinformed -- Followers of any of the above but not deliberate deceivers.
7. This text contains the test that separates the true believer from the pretenders to the faith.
8. Let’s examine the QUALITIES that John says must be present in genuine Christians.
I. SPIRIT- FILLED PEOPLE CONFESS JESUS IS CHRIST -- 1 JOHN 4:2-4,9,14,15,17B
1. Jesus came in the flesh -4:2-4
" By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world. You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world."
A. The Messiah would be born of a virgin
a. Prophecy -- "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel." -- Isaiah 7:14
b. Fulfillment -- "She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins." Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet "BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL," which translated means, "GOD WITH US." Matthew 1:21-23