Summary of the Sermon by Pastor Gilbert Khoo, at Bethany international Service, on Sunday, 5 Aug 2018.
LIFE OF FELLOWSHIP
Acts 2:42 “They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.”
Christian fellowship is a critical part of Christian life and, being in the company of believers, is important for our growth as Christians. We are created for fellowship. We need the fellowship of believers – the warmth of the body of Christ. Without fellowship we will feel lonely, there will be lack encouragement, purpose and accountability. There will be spiritual dryness and, possibly, spiritual decline. If we belong to a Christian community, we need not go through storms alone, like a small ship being tossed and turned in a big storm. However, a bigger ship in a big storm will be steadier in extreme weather.
Elements in a Fellowship (Acts 2:42-47)
Greek - didache (dē-dä-khā)
• The believers were steadfast in the teaching
• The right teaching and doctrine helps to shape the spiritual growth of believers.
2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” The cell group plays an important part in the spiritual growth of a believer. The cell group leader helps to teach Biblical doctrine, which is the absolute source of truth. The cell group can help to impart knowledge and clear doubts which the cell group member may have about their faith. For instance, our church has a different position on the salvation doctrine that we could lose our salvation if we do not repent and choose to turn away from God and lead a sinful life.
When we get together as a body of Christ, the Lord Himself will be present in the midst of us. The Greek word for fellowship is “koinonia”.
The Lord Jesus reminds us about fellowship – Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” Fellowship strengthens the believers for we cannot walk on our own. Proverbs 27:17 “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend”.
Fellowship helps us to be accountable to one another. When we see a brother tempted, we can help him turn away from it. Even Pastor David Cho (pastor of the largest church in the world) shared that he even got another pastor to keep him accountable when he travels.
3. Breaking the Bread (Helping One Another)
What are the needs of our fellow Christians? Are there situations where we can help each other? Helping those in need in our fellowship? The least we can do is to pray for one another, and see the Lord’s hand at work in our brother or sister’s life.
Philippians 2:4 “Let each of us look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Matthew 25:40 “And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, in as much as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’”
When we pray for one another, something happens – the hands of God will move. We have seen prayers answered in the cell group as we pray for each other.
Ephesians 6:18 “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.” Our God is able to do exceedingly more than we ask or pray for.
Pastor Rick Warren once said about fellowship, “We are created for community, fashioned for fellowship and formed for a family, and none of us can fulfill God’s purposes by ourselves.”
Fellowship is a time when we interact to fulfill the needs of one another as a social being, to stir and encourage one another, testify to other believers for our spiritual growth.