Following Jesus 84

God’s vision for the church is to glorify Him (I Corinthians 10:31). The goal, aspiration and focus of the church is to bring God glory, honor and praise. The way in which this is to be done is not up for speculation. Rather, God has given us specific instructions as to how to go about glorifying Him. This is accomplished by God centered worship, evangelism, ministry, discipleship and finally the fellowship by followers of Jesus with God and with one another. 
What are biblical characteristics of God glorifying fellowship? Ephesians 4:1-3 provides insight.  “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:1-3 ESV).
 
The Apostle explains that first there is fellowship with Christ. Vs. 1. “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,”
  
Secondly there is fellowship with fellow followers of Christ. Vs. 2-3. …with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
 
Humility. Without arrogance. Modesty, meekness. No conceit, egotism, superiority or pride. No attitude of self-importance. “Humility” is a term not found in the Latin or Greek vocabularies of Paul’s day. The Greek word apparently was coined by Christians, perhaps even by Paul himself, to describe a quality for which no other word was available. Humility, the most foundational Christian virtue (James 4:6), is the quality of character commanded in the first beatitude (Matt. 5:3), and describes the noble grace of Christ (Phil. 2:7–8).
 
Gentleness. To not be harsh but rather to have mildness, calmness, kindness, quietness and softness. Possessing a peacefulness. “Meekness,” an inevitable product of humility, refers to that which is mild-spirited and self-controlled (cf. Matt. 5:5; 11:29; Gal. 5:23; Col. 3:12).
 
Patience. A state of emotional calm in the face of provocation or misfortune and without complaint or irritation. The Greek word literally means to be long-tempered, and refers to a resolved patience that is an outgrowth of humility and gentleness (cf. 1 Thess. 5:14; James 5:10).
 
Bearing with one another in love. Humility, gentleness, and patience are reflected in a forbearing love for others that is continuous and unconditional (cf. 1 Pet. 4:8).
 
Eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit. Hurrying, hastening doing quickly the discipline of guarding the oneness and the closeness created by the Holy Spirit or the Spirit of God. That which belongs to and comes from the Spirit. 
 
This is to be done so in the bond of peace. In or with the ties and bindings, the fastener of peace and tranquility.  The Spirit-bestowed oneness of all true believers (see 1 Cor. 6:17; 12:11–13; Phil. 1:27; 2:2) has created the bond of peace, the spiritual cord that surrounds and binds God’s holy people together. This bond is love (Col. 3:14).
 
 
 
 
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