Bible Society of South Africa

Devoted to the fellowship - 10 May 2024

By Ben Fourie

Bible text(s)

42They spent their time in learning from the apostles, taking part in the fellowship, and sharing in the fellowship meals and the prayers.

I am very fortunate to have attended church services of many different dominations. In most of them, at the beginning of the service, the minister asked the members of the congregation to greet each other. In some churches, it is done very reservedly and in others, quite boisterously. In the beginning, I found it a little strange to greet people that I have never met. In my home congregation, on the contrary, it was also strange to keep greeting the same people every Sunday.

Then, one day, I realised what a privilege it was to greet new people, but even more, to greet all the people that I know so well in my own church. You should have realised, by now, that we will be looking at what is second on the list of that young church in Jerusalem – fellowship. It is so important that we will take two days to cover it.

I have looked at different English translations and most of them translate the word “koinonia” as fellowship. I rather like the Contemporary English Version that translates it as “they were like family to each other”.

Fellowship, or being like family to each other, is one of the most important building blocks of the church. Without this fellowship, the early church would not have survived and this is also true of the church of 2 000 years later. On the other hand, it is just as true that without fellowship, we as individual members cannot enjoy the full joy of our faith.

I have heard people say they do not go to church as they do not want to be associated with all the hypocrites in church. The problem with such a way of thinking is that you forego the opportunity to meet fellow believers who are not sanctimonious or hypocrites. Fellowship is also so much more than just a church service. It is about being part of the body of Christ in the world.

Prayer: Lord, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts that there are fellow believers all around us, people who are bound to us by your love. Amen

Bible Society of South Africav.4.21.9
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