Tag Archive | community of Believers

Psalm 133:1 ” How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity.”

As Jesus prayed for His disciples in John, He asked that “they may be one as we are one.” (John 17:11)  Later in that Chapter as He went on to pray for all Believers, He said, “May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me.”  (John 17:23)  In other words, to reflect the unity and oneness between the Father and Son,  as Believers, we need to be perfectly united also.  You can’t   show the world Jesus when your bad behavior towards others is just like the rest of the world.

Philippians 2:1-2 ” If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.”

In other words…if you have the love of Christ within you, demonstrate it!  Paul calls us here to be like-minded…the Greek word for this meaning the activity represented involving the will, the affections, and the conscience.  This unity involves coming together as a whole in decision-making, with morally right passions, and motives.  For being like-minded is thinking the same thing for the good of all, not just a few.  Yes, being like-minded takes work on the part of everyone.  It calls us to be peacemakers, bridge-builders, and servants to all – for His sake and for His glory.

Philippians 1:27 ” Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.”

Paul is thought to have written this letter to the Philippians during his first Roman imprisonment.  He wanted them to be encouraged whether they ever saw him again or not.  Paul especially exhorted them to stand firm in one spirit…something that the modern-day Church should take heed of.  When there is infighting, discord, and division,  the Church cannot function as it should.  For when we are not standing firmly together in unity…contending for the Gospel as one…the message of Salvation through Jesus Christ is lost in the muck and mire and turmoil within the Church walls.  Paul reminds the Philippians, and us, to lead our lives in a manner deserving of the Gospel of Peace.

John 11:26 ” Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?’ “

The Lord is asking you this same question today…”Do you believe this?” Do you believe that Jesus Christ is the only way to be saved?  Do you believe that He died for your sins that you may have eternal life?    Maybe you’ve never been confronted to make a decision for Jesus…or maybe you’ve been resisting the wooing of the Holy Spirit.  Either way, believing is a commitment of mind, body and spirit.  It’s the start of an intimate spiritual journey of faith, trust, and obedience.  The Lord is asking you today, “Do you believe?”

Acts 2:46-47 ” Every day they continued to meet together in the Temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their numbers daily those who were being saved.”

Unity and mutual care for one another…that’s what the early Church did on a daily basis.  With steadfastness and faithfulness to the Gospel, they walked out their lives in very practical but focused ways.  They approached each day with open hands and open hearts…looking for needs and filling them.  The early Church was centered around goodwill towards others…of encouragement and sharing…of loving one another.  And the Lord added to their numbers daily.  For people saw the Gospel being played out in front of them and they wanted what these Believers had.  The world is still looking for that today…for care, and compassion…for love and acceptance.    For the Church of the present has the same responsibility and opportunity to impact the world for Christ as the early Church did…maybe even more.

Acts 4:32 ” All the Believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had.”

It tells us earlier in Acts that, “All the Believers were together and had everything in common.  Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.” (Acts 2:44-45)  This is how the early Church functioned…their inward focus was on unity and mutual care for one another.  For they took the Lord’s charge to “Love one another” very seriously.  And  because of everyone’s personal commitment to “see a need, fill a need” …the early Church exploded.  So I ask you, what would happen if all Believers committed to the “see a need, fill a need” directive…not waiting for someone else to do it, or thinking it’s only the Pastor’s responsibility?  The early Church’s focus was on perfect unity and mutual care for one another…the Church today could only benefit from this same focus.

Acts 10:47 ” Then Peter said, ‘Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.’ “

Peter and the other Believers with him couldn’t dispute what they witnessed in the house of Cornelius.  The Holy Spirit was super-naturally  poured out on the Gentiles while Peter was still mid-sentence, telling them about Jesus.  Now Peter could have questioned this…”But Lord, these people are very different from us!  We don’t have anything in common with them.  They’re a different race and culture from us!  Are You sure You know what You’re doing?”  Sometimes, as fellow-Believers, we can find ourselves asking the same questions of those we find different from us.  Yes, we may not share a lot…but we do have a common denominator…faith in Jesus Christ.  Together we are one Body…one Church…united in our trust of our Savior…joined together eternally by our faith.