The Christian believers in the early church were long expecting the coming of Jesus. After all, some were present when Jesus said, “If I go away, I will come again and receive you” (John 14:3). And, what were they to do while waiting on His return? More so, how were they to remain encouraged while being faced with the same trials they themselves witnessed their precious Savior endure? The answer is found in the Apostle Paul’s writings. Paul admonishes the believers to “Comfort (encourage) one another, and edify (build up) one another, even as also you do” (1 Thess. 5:11). Notice that Paul says to continue what “you” have already been doing!
1 Thessalonians 5:11 Wherefore comfort (encourgage) one another, and edify (build up) one another, even as also ye do.
Friends, that admonishment is still relevant today. You see, fellowship builds us up. The Greek word that describes this Christian virtue is koi·no·ni·a, which literally means: Christian fellowship or communion, with God or, more commonly, with fellow Christians. It best describes our coming together to share our testimonies, crying together, eating together, and yes! hugging one another. One thing that I have missed most for the past two years is the human touch that comes from a firm or soft hand shake, or soft or firm embrace from my fellow brothers and sisters. Thankfully we are making our way back to that!
Be assured that while we await Jesus’s return we will face many trials and will need to bear one other’s burdens, and our fellowship and love for each will sustain and strengthen us for the battle. As we enter into this New Year let us take advantage of the opportunities to embrace one another and build one another up. After all, Jesus did say He is coming back again! Do you believe Him?
By the way, I love walking through the doors and seeing my Brothers and Sisters sitting comfortably and talking about the goodness of God. Keep it up!
Will you come and join us in Koinonia (fellowship)?,
Pastor Scottie Deal