Fellowship in God’s family – Part 2
We must at all times, exercise great caution to ensure that compromise in any form whatsoever does not seep in to corrupt fellowship of God’s family. Although fellowship is very important, the Lord cautions against compromise. The character and virtue of Christ such as honesty, open-mindedness, righteousness and holiness must be in us at all times, as we fellowship together. Sin or satanic characteristics must not be condoned in the guise of promoting fellowship, because they destroy its very essence. Darkness and light, good and evil, righteousness and unrighteousness cannot mix.
For our fellowship to be scriptural, there must not be any compromise with sin. Rather, there must be complete avoidance of darkness and everything associated with it. The Scripture commands, “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you” because God “would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.” The fellowship of God’s family is not open to the occult, satanic, demonised, sinful, backsliding people or false prophets and false teachers. It is for people who are born again; people who love the Lord and the standard revealed in the word of God.
The bond of love in the fellowship of God’s family is stronger than the natural tie of the human family. Hence, the ties in the natural family must not be allowed to rob us of the fellowship in God’s family. God warns sternly against compromise. He commands that people who are out to make us compromise should be marked and avoided, since they could tamper with our eternal destiny. We must endeavour to keep the salvation of our souls. They should neither be accepted into the fellowship nor allowed to use the Church’s pulpit to spread their errors.
Having become members of God’s family, we are to separate ourselves from every perversion of people who seek to draw disciples after themselves. The salvation of our souls made Christ to die and the ministers of the gospel make sacrifices to nurture us in the way of the Lord; neither the church nor its leadership can afford to lose you. What is required of you is firm commitment not to budge from promoting love and faith in the fellowship of God’s family.
Our commitment in the fellowship should necessarily include encouraging, exhorting and nurturing one another with the word of God. If any member has a character defect, he should be helped, and that will keep him from deviating from the truth. You are to watch over yourself; your thoughts and people who come to you; avoid those who try to dissuade you from following the path of righteousness. Rather, we should exhort one another daily on spiritual issues, which are weightier matters.
Discussions centred on ephemeral things are not important compared with fellowship in God’s family. We should challenge one another to do better in the Lord. We should check up on one another and be compassionate towards one another. There should be the attitude of mercy, courtesy, and politeness towards one another. There must be care for how our actions affect others. It is our responsibility as those in fellowship to be “…all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.”
We must be in unity with other believers of like precious faith. We are to be obedient to God and His word, whether those in leadership over us are present or not. Disobedience is not of God and does not promote fellowship. If you are finding it difficult to obey God, it is most likely that you have lost your first love although you are still very busy in the activities of the church. If that is so, “remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.”
Further Reading (King James Version): Philippians 1:1-5; 2:1-5; 3:10; 4:1-3; Ephesians 5:10-12; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; 1 Corinthians 10:20; Psalm 94:20; Deuteronomy 13:1-4,6-8; Romans 16:17,18; 2 John 9-11; Acts 20:28-32; Malachi 3:16-18; Galatians 6:1,2; Hebrews 3:12-14; 10:22-25; 1 Peter 3:8-12; Philippians 1:27; 2:12-16; Revelation 2:1-5.
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