The Fellowship - Part 4 of Signs and Wonders: 4 Core Values for Today's Church

Friday, August 16, 2013

the fellowship
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. (Acts 2:42-43 NIV)

Core Value #2 - The Fellowship.  This second core value does not come naturally to humans and its placement as number two on this list is intentional. It can only come once we are first devoted to the Apostle's teaching. Their devotion to these four values was more than just a mere commitment to them. It was embracing them as a lifestyle. It meant a complete change in the way they lived their daily lives. Our devotion to the fellowship can only be truly realized after our devotion to God's Word. It is that Word that transforms our hearts and enables us to become devoted to one another.

The original Hebrew word for fellowship in this verse has the same root meaning from the Greek word koinonia, which means community; communio;, joint participation; intimacy. It goes beyond just a membership in an organization. It is a marriage to one another intended to mirror the relationship between Christ and his Church. This is what set the early Church apart from all other religious institutions of the day. It was the early Christians' devotion to each other that caught the attention of the world around them.

How did they achieve this level of community? It was simply the result of a personal encounter with the Holy Spirit that brought a revelation of a God who showed his devotion and love to them by laying down his own life for their redemption. Genuine fellowship is only possible when we experience personal fellowship with the Father first. This then enables us to love others as Christ loves us. The greater the revelation, the greater the transformation. Too often we pursue fellowship with God through fellowship with each other. This is backwards and only leads to dysfunction in the Body of Christ. The correct way is to pursue fellowship with one another through genuine fellowship with the Father.

This creates fertile ground for signs and wonders. Psalm 133 tells us that when the Body of Christ comes together in unity, it is there that the Lord commands His blessing. What that literally means is our devotion to the fellowship releases the hand of God to move and to show his signs and wonders among us. It doesn't take high and lofty prayers or skillfully crafted sermons or even dynamic worship services. It just takes our devotion, first to him, and then to one another. I think one major reason why we don't see signs and wonders in Churches today is because we simply lack genuine fellowship.

Do you desire a deeper, more genuine fellowship with the people around you? Then pursue a deeper, more genuine fellowship with the Father.
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