Community Groups: Fellowship
We see small groups as a priority for every Christian and every church. Why? Because Scripture constantly underscores the centrality of relationships. J.I. Packer agrees:
“We should not think of our fellowship with other Christians as a spiritual luxury, an optional addition to the exercises of private devotions. Fellowship is one of the great words of the New Testament: it denotes something that is vital to a Christian’s spiritual health, and central to the Church’s true life…The church will flourish and Christians will be strong only when there is fellowship.”
Fellowship can sound like a “churchy” word - we may use it a lot without really knowing its meaning.
Let’s talk about what it’s NOT. Fellowship isn’t just social interaction or social gatherings like hanging out, watching the game, talking about our favorite sports team, etc. Those are all great activities and can help with our small group life but biblical fellowship is much more- much deeper.
Biblical Fellowship Defined.
Now let’s talk about what it is. “Fellowship means to participate together, or to communicate things we hold in common. The greatest common denominator between us as Christians is our relationship with God the Father, through God the Son, by God the Holy Spirit. This forms the content of true fellowship. Our relationship with God should be the main topic of communication within our small groups as we participate together to fulfill his purpose in the local church.” (Why Small Groups)
There’s a catch, however. The depth of our personal relationship with God determines the degree of fellowship possible with each other. In order for us to experience true, biblical fellowship with each other, we must maintain a passionate relationship with and experience of God. Perhaps that is why biblical fellowship is so rare!
Nothing compares to the fellowship we enjoy when we worship together, study and apply Scripture together, encourage and correct each other, and communicate to one another our current experience of God. Nothing. Social activities can create a context for fellowship, but they are a place to begin—not a place to remain. When I spend an extended time with another Christian, my main desire is that we know fellowship. I want to hear about his relationship with God, and how God is revealing himself to him. I want to communicate my current experience of God as well and impart a fresh passion for God.
Ready to experience biblical fellowship? Click HERE to find out how!