Fellowship with God (and Other Believers)
We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. (1 John 1:3)
John says that Jesus provides something which all of us desperately want—fellowship with God the Father and his Son Jesus.
That word fellowship is an important New Testament truth. The word was used in the common language to describe partners in business or joint owners of a property. The root of the word means “common” or to share something in common. It is a relationship word. When applied to what John says here, it is a most profound truth and opportunity. In verse 1 Jesus is called “The Word of Life.” In verse 2 he is the life made “manifest” and he is “eternal life.”
Life describes in the most general way the spiritual experience that all of us so desperately want. It is the pursuit of all the religions of the world. It is the worship impulse God placed within every human heart. Physical death is the grisly reminder of our spiritual death and what we feel inwardly. We are dead. We are lost. We are empty. We are searching. We are broken. What do we want? We want to live! We want that inward spiritual life. We want vibrancy and the biggest thing we want is we want the God our souls were made for. Jesus is the source of that life and the giver of the very life of God to all who believe in him.
It’s like our local utility NIPSCO. Think of what’s coming. Winter. Nasty weather. Ice and sleet and snow. What happens when the big storm hits? Wires go down. No electricity. Suddenly everything is electrically dead. Who do we call? NIPSCO! Come and save us from the cold! NIPSCO can make electricity available, but for our homes and lights to come alive again, they have to be connected to the source of the electricity. When we are connected to NIPSCO, not only are we electrically alive but we are in constant electrical fellowship with NIPSCO and indirectly, in electrical communion with everyone else who is in electrical fellowship with NIPSCO.
Do you see what John is saying? Jesus as God is the source of all life. Man’s sin in the garden began a spiritual winter for all mankind; all our wires were disconnected from God. Without connection to God, there’s no spiritual life. There’s no peace. There’s nothing ultimately meaningful. Do we all want it? Yes. So much so that we settle for cheap substitutes thinking they will give us real life. Sex makes us feel good, and money makes us feel safe, and success makes us feel important, and health makes us feel eternal, but all of them are fleeting.
To be spiritually alive we must be connected to God through Christ. I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6) Faith in Jesus as Savior is the connection between us and the life of God. When we connect by faith, we actually participate, not electrically, but spiritually in the very life of God, a life that must be eternal because God is eternal.
I don’t have to know you to know that this is what you want. And only Jesus provides the life of God in the soul of man, begun by the Spirit through faith in Jesus and his saving work on our behalf on the cross—a connection with the very life of God that cannot and will not end.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
©2012 Steve DeWitt. You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in any format provided that: (1) you credit the author, (2) any modifications are clearly marked, (3) you do not charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction, (4) you include Bethel’s website address (www.bethelweb.org) on the copied resource.
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