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Walking in Fellowship With God

I have always believed that our fellowship with God is entirely from his working in our lives. It was he who knew us before we were born. It was he who called us and chose us. It was he who absorbed our disobedience and rebellion upon himself as he hung on the cross and removed our sin. It was he who orchestrated the circumstances by which we call out to him for forgiveness. It is he who gives us the renewal that comes through a relationship with him. It was he who placed us in the right church to have fellowship with others who know also him. It is he who gives us spiritual understanding to make sense of his word. It is he who walks with us and guides us through life’s confusing maze. It is he who protects us and strengthens us in life’s stormy waters. It is he who will lead us across the threshold of death into his glory and presence. It is he who will be our light and joy for all eternity.

These concepts were further underscored during the last couple of mornings in my time of personal worship and prayer. I’ve been reading 1st Corinthians for the umpteenth time and in this particular go-over, I’m struck by the force of Paul’s insistence that all that we are is all of God. In his opening address to the Corinthians he identifies the intended audience. In chapter 1, verse 2, Paul describes the readers as “saints by calling”. They were (and we are) in Christ only by his calling; there is nothing we have added or done that we might be in Him. We were called off the path of the world over to join him on the path which he is on. We were called from fellowship with darkness to fellowship with the light. It was all of Him and nothing of us.

This idea of God calling us into fellowship with him is further underscored a few verses later in verse 9 where Paul writes, “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” It is God Himself who brings us into fellowship with Christ. It is God himself who leads us into deeper, purer fellowship in Him; especially as our hearts and minds are renewed and what we think/feel about the world is increasingly reflecting his perspective. Likewise, in verses 24 and 30 and 2:14, Paul explains that this calling produces a change within us. We are no longer confused by scripture, incorrectly seeing it as a set of religious aphorisms, but God’s instruction manual for life. Once we are in fellowship with God, suddenly we see the Bible for what is really is: the word of life, the wisdom of God—for life in the here and now as well as life in the hereafter.

Lastly, in 1:26, Paul challenges the Corinthians to “consider their calling.” This is one of several appeals in scriptures to each of us that we might pause in the flurry of life and give thought to our relationship with God. Have we truly met God and been transformed in that meeting from lawbreakers to law abiders? This change can only happen by God, but we can look and see his fingerprints in our life. There is the implicit expectation that in examining our calling some will see that indeed, we were called out of the world into fellowship with Him and we will give even greater praise and thanks to our heavenly Father. Yet others will see that this calling is not true of them. Perhaps they thought that knowing God meant being “spiritual” when in actuality such “spirituality” might actually mean further rejection of the true Lord of the universe and submission to his word. Paul’s hope was that in considering our calling, if we realize we do not know the Lord of the universe, then we would call out to him for mercy and forgiveness to be restored to his holy presence. Then, once reconciled to him, we might walk in close, personal, joyful, fellowship with Christ.
Last modified on Monday, 06 December 2010 11:10
Russ Brewer

Russ Brewer

Rescued from the domain of darkness, transferred to the kingdom of the Son. Undershepherd of Grace. Husband of Corinne. Father of three. Chew-toy to Zeke...