Experiencing God, Week 11

Sermon Tone Analysis
View more →
Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togeda today. Mawage, that bwessed awangment, that dweam wifin a dweam...And wuv, tru wuv, will fowow you foweva…So tweasure your wuv… The Princess Bride
Unfortunately, that is what many think of relationships and marriage today, as jokes, something to poke fun at, and comical, not a serious look at the close love relationship between man and wife.
God has extended an invitation for a love relationship with Him IF we will respond. Not only does He bring us into a special relationship, but He places us within a body of believers and we, corporately, make up the body of Christ.
So,how much does He truly love us?
John 3:16 KJV 1900
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
God Loves Us That Much
Our relationship with God was looked upon so highly that, even when we intentionally sinned and separated ourselves from God, He provided His Son to be born in flesh and provided for our salvation through His death, burial, and resurrection.
Jesus - is the head of the Church
Holy Spirit - guides the work and will of the Father
Book pg. 226 - “When Christ functions as the Head of His church, God will use that body to carry out His will in every part of the earth”.
So, what is required for God’s will to be carried out by the church?
As we discussed last week, the church is a living organism made up of many parts and with Christ as the Head. Christ set the example by yielding to the Father while He was on earth. He gave us directions to follow in:
Matthew 28:19 ESV
19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
IF we obey those directions, then God’s will can be carried out throughout the world.
We Have A Worldwide Impact
We have a worldly impact when we follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Look at the account of Philip and the Ethiopian. Who guided Philip to that location? Who caused the Ethiopian to have questions? Who guided Philip to ask if he had questions? Who caused conviction to come to the Ethiopian? HOW was the Great Commission carried out in light of the Ethiopian?
HOW many events like this have we missed in our life by not being sensitive to the urging of the Holy Spirit?
pg. 228 “When we adjust our lives to God and become Kingdom-oriented, He will involve you in His work anywhere He chooses”.
Are we afraid of God’s response if we are obedient?


Translated “Christian fellowship”.
There is this type of relationship/fellowship found in the church today BECAUSE of the koinonia extended by Christ. We have experienced it, and want others to also. But, there is another aspect involved - surrender. We must surrender to the Lord, as we must also surrender to each other.
There is a Fellowship Among Believers
We have a relationship as believers between God and Jesus. It is the most complete expression of a love relationship that can exist. Our relationship with our fellow church members are an expression of our relationship with God.
1 John 2:9–11 ESV
9 Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. 10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. 11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
1 John 4:7–8 ESV
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
1 John 4:20 ESV
20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.
According to scripture, how can we claim we love Jesus IF we do not extend that same love to our brothers and sisters in Christ?
John 13:35 ESV
35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Koinonia In The Kingdom

Have you ever just hit it off with someone you’ve never seen before, and it’s almost like we have a bond? Believers are connected across the world with the common bond of Jesus. We get it, we have a bond, and it manifests itself among other believers.
Should there be any competition among churches? The example used in the book talked about smaller churches bonding together for the greater good. One church calling a student minister, and he became a resource for the other churches. Churches bonded together for a summer program, office equipment, vehicles, other resources were shared. Financial assistance was extended. The churches LOVED each other. Why? Because of their love of Christ.
So, how has that changed today? Why do we see other churches as competition? Eternity is a long time, so we might as well learn to get along down here on earth.
Can koinonia love exist among churches? Among different denominations? Different associations? etc?
We all serve the same God. As long as we are bible believing, Trinity affirming, believers…then yes! However, IF there is an issue among churches, it may indicate a deeper problem with the relationship we (individually and as the church) have with God.
Loving on a New Level
So, where do we rank our love on a scale of 1 to 10? Individually? Corporately?
Now, the next question may be a little tougher… what would OTHERS rank our love scale at?
How OTHERS view our level of love for others and our community can definitely impact our witness. We should both love one another, love our other churches, and love our neighbors.
Mark 12:31 ESV
31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
We are called to love on a different level. We are called to love like Christ. We are called to love so much we want everyone to know about Jesus.
Are we so caught up in everything we think isn’t going right, that we can’t see where things are going right? Is it impacting our ability to love on a greater scale? Is that impacting our ability to even work together among other churches to carry out the Great Commission?
Cooperative Relationship Among Churches
The New Testament churches were interdependent - they relied on one another, they helped each other, they encouraged each other, and it enhanced their experience with God.
Acts 2:42–47 ESV
42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Acts 11:19–26 ESV
19 Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews. 20 But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who on coming to Antioch spoke to the Hellenists also, preaching the Lord Jesus. 21 And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number who believed turned to the Lord. 22 The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23 When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, 24 for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. 25 So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26 and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.
Acts 11:29–30 ESV
29 So the disciples determined, every one according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers living in Judea. 30 And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul.
Acts 13:2–3 ESV
2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3 Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off.
Galatians 1:16–24 ESV
16 was pleased to reveal his Son to me, in order that I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with anyone; 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me, but I went away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. 18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas and remained with him fifteen days. 19 But I saw none of the other apostles except James the Lord’s brother. 20 (In what I am writing to you, before God, I do not lie!) 21 Then I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia. 22 And I was still unknown in person to the churches of Judea that are in Christ. 23 They only were hearing it said, “He who used to persecute us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy.” 24 And they glorified God because of me.
Examples throughout the New Testament show the interdependence on the apostles and each other. It’s how religion was practiced, it’s how the Great Commission was spread, and EVERYBODY saw it… Think about that for a moment. We are not called to be Lone Ranger Christians, and we are also not called to be Lone Ranger Churches.
Does anyone have any idea how this church contributes to the Great Commission outside of personal witnessing?
Bread Ministry
Food Pantry
Annie Armstrong - gifts to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering support missionary salaries and training, church planting, and evangelism efforts in North America.
Tony and Jean Floyd - Paraguay missionaries.
Lottie Moon - gifts to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering supports international missionary salaries, spreading the Gospel Message across the world.
Samaritans Purse - millions of children are reached in some of the most remote areas of the world with an Operation Christmas Child shoe box gift and the message of the Gospel.
The list can go on and on, but it also shows how we can take local contributions and multiply it throughout the state or the nation and support missions far outside our communities walls.
Experiencing More of God
We can not do everything ourselves, but we can be a part of the ministry as we partner with others.

Essentials of Koinonia, Part 1

John 17:3 ESV
3 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
Koinonia with God is the basic element of salvation and eternal life. It is freely given, and freely received (both ways).
If you love God, you will obey Him.
John 14:21–24 ESV
21 Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” 22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. 24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.
If you love God, you will love others.
1 John 4:21 ESV
21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
But, can we lose that deep feeling of love?
Revelation 2:1–7 (ESV)
1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.
2 “ ‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false.
3 I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary.
4 But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.
5 Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.
6 Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’
Could God look at us, and accuse us of loving the love we had at first?
What can pull us away from our love towards other Christians, the church, and God?? possessions, materialism, greed, selfishness, pride, etc.
We Must Submit to God’s Sovereign Rule
If Jesus is our Lord, the He requires absolute obedience. As the head of the church, He expects submission and obedience.
But, how does the book say our fellowship with God can be broken?
Self is in control, no respect of authority, placing self as head, etc.
pg. 241 - Fellowship is broken when an individual tries to be the head of the church, or when the church expects its pastor or another individual or group to rule the church. No individual or group can function as the head of the body if the church is to be healthy.
Koinonia is impossible if a church is made up of individuals who are unwilling to submit to the lordship of Christ in the body of Christ.

Essentials of Koinonia, Part 2

We must experience God in a real and personal way. Our koinonia is based on our personal experience with God. There is no substitute.
God shaped hole in our hearts that can ONLY be filled with God.
How does this type of love occur? Complete trust. We must get to the place where we truly rely on God to do only what He can do, and leave it at that.
If we place trust anywhere else, can we still have complete trust in God???
Holy Spirit is present in all believers. Guides Christians, empowers them to do God-sized things. Must depend on HIM to do them, not ourselves.
So, how do we remove ourselves and learn to rely solely on Him?
Related Media
See more
Related Sermons
See more