The W.I.F.E. We Are Called To Be (Part 3)
When we hear the word “fellowship,” we think of church people eating together or a church gathering. Those may be expressions of fellowship. But it is much more than that. Fellowship is sharing something in common with someone.
In his “The Bride: Renewing Our Passion For The Church,” Charles Swindoll summarized the four major objectives of the church in the acronym W.I.F.E. We already saw that “W” stands for “Worship” and “I” for “Instruction.” Now, “F” stands for “Fellowship.”
The early church “devoted themselves to… fellowship” (Acts 2:42b, ESV) In The Message version, “fellowship” is translated “the life together”. Truly, they modeled for us what it meant to live the life together: “And all the believers lived in a wonderful harmony, holding everything in common. They sold whatever they owned and pooled their resources so that each person’s need was met.” (Acts 2:44-45, The Message) As a result of the Apostle Peter’s evangelistic message, 3,000 people put their faith in the Lord Jesus as their Savior. Most, if not all of them, were not from Jerusalem. Supposedly, they were there only for the Feast of Pentecost, one of the feasts requiring all male Jews from all over the country to go on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. But now that they became believers, they have to stay longer than planned to grow in their newfound faith. Though they were not required to do so, the believers in the city sold their properties to support them. “The whole congregation of believers was united as one—one heart, one mind! They didn’t even claim ownership of their own possessions. No one said, ‘That’s mine; you can’t have it.’ They shared everything.” (Acts 4:32, The Message)
Swindoll wrote, “True fellowship means that we care about and therefore care for one another. … fellowship reveals that the church is a caring flock.”
Brethren, let us care for one another.
(To Be Continued)