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Church Fellowship

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Church Fellowship By Professor John F. Brug * * Preserving and Extending Fellowship * Goals To discuss things we are doing to preserve and extend Christian fellowship. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Church Fellowship


1
Church Fellowship
  • By Professor John F. Brug

2
Preserving and Extending Fellowship
3
Goals
  1. To discuss things we are doing to preserve and
    extend Christian fellowship.
  2. To consider ways we as individuals and
    congregation can improve in this important aspect
    of Christian living.

4
Opening Prayer
  • We thank you, dear Holy Spirit, for the unity
    you have given us in our congregation and synod.
    Teach us to love and cherish this priceless
    fellowship. Help us examine our lives as
    individuals and as a congregation so that we
    become more zealous and enthusiastic in
    preserving and extending this fellowship. Amen.

5
Introduction
  • One of the great joys of being a Christian
  • Psalm 133

6
Christian unity is like
  • Oil on Aarons head (perfume or lotion)
  • Dew (prized in Israel, months without rain)
  • Symbolize joy of brothers, sisters living
    together in faithful unity of the Spirit.
  • Enjoying fellowship with like-minded Christians.

7
Responsibility for every Christian?
  • Ephesians 43
  • Every Christian has the responsibility to work in
    order to
  • preserve this fellowship
  • extend this fellowship

8
Ways of preserving and extending fellowship
  • What are some ways we can show love for the
    members of our congregation?
  • Read John 1335 1 Peter 122
  • loving one another
  • showing concern in times of trouble
  • visiting the sick
  • comforting the grieving

9
Ways of preserving and extending fellowship
  • What are some ways our congregation members are
    good at showing their love?
  • What are some areas in which we could do better?

10
Helping with physical needs
  • Galatians 610
  • As a congregation?
  • Food pantry
  • Door offerings
  • Thrift store
  • How can our congregation do better?

11
Helping with physical needs
  • Galatians 610
  • As a synod?
  • WELS Humanitarian Aid
  • Central Africa Medical Mission
  • Agencies LIMA, WLCFS
  • How can we do better as a synod?

12
Ways of preserving and extending fellowship
  • Ephesians 411-16
  • How do we build up the churchs defense against
    error?
  • Personal Bible study
  • Attendance at Bible classes and Sunday School, VBS

13
What are some ways we could do this better?
  • Pray and work to increase attendance at Bible
    classes and Sunday School, VBS

14
We must build up defenses against
  • New Age Movement
  • Weakness in principles and practice of key
    doctrines
  • Fellowship
  • Gods roles for men and women
  • Worldliness infiltrating Church militant
  • materialism
  • sexual immorality

15
How do we show respect and support for faithful
called workers?
  • 1 Thessalonians 511-13
  • 1 Timothy 517
  • lay ministry involvement
  • secretarial help
  • compensation (salary, honoraria, fees)
  • respect for office
  • speaking well of workers to others

16
Respect and Support for Faithful Called Workers
  • What are some areas in which we can improve in
    this regard?

17
How do we work to extend our fellowship as a
congregation?
  • VBS
  • Sunday School
  • Evangelism

18
How do we work to extend our fellowship as a
synod?
  • Home Missions
  • World Missions
  • Commission on Inter-Church Relations

19
Preserve church fellowship by practicing church
discipline
  • Huge topic
  • Like removing a sliver
  • Can prevent an infection, loss of limb
  • Dealing with public sin heals and helps preserve
    our precious church fellowship.

20
Practicing Church Discipline
  • As individuals and as a congregation
  • Matthew 1815-17
  • Steps to win back brother(s) for Christ
  • In private Why is this so important?
  • With witnesses friends, pastor
  • Involving entire church
  • Council, Voters
  • Synod circuit, district, synod appeal

21
Preserving and Extending Fellowship
  • What is the last act of love available to us to
    help an unrepentant member of our fellowship?

22
Preserve church fellowship by practicing church
discipline
  • Jude 18-23
  • What is the difference between a weak brother and
    a persistent errorist?

23
Weak Brother vs. Persistent Errorist
  • Persistent Errorist
  • Ignores instruction
  • Promotes false views and teachings
  • Weak Brother
  • Erroneous views on some doctrines, but
  • Willing to be corrected by Scripture.

24
How can we determine in which category a person
belongs?
  • While studying disputed issues in Scripture, weak
    brothers will not make propaganda for their view.
  • Persistent errorists hold on to their views in
    spite of admonition and try to win other people
    to their views.

25
How do we deal with people in each category?
  • Weak brothers We want to preserve fellowship by
    patiently instructing them.
  • Persistent errorists Fellowship around the
    truth must be preserved by excluding them from
    the congregation.

26
Excommunication versus Termination of Fellowship
  • In Christian love we excommunicate
  • Persist in a sin knowing Gods Word condemns it
  • Doctrinal error destroys saving faith
  • Hold to a position knowing it is contrary to
    Scripture
  • Excluded themselves from salvation.
  • We warn of damnation without repentance.

27
Excommunication versus Termination of Fellowship
  • Termination of fellowship done in love
  • Hold to false doctrine convinced their position
    agrees with Scripture
  • May be ignorance, weakness that does not destroy
    saving faith
  • May not have excluded themselves from salvation,
    but
  • Error prevents our fellowship with them.

28
Excommunication versus Termination of Fellowship
  • Use only Termination of fellowship
  • With church bodies and congregations, because we
  • Cannot deal with every individual to determine if
    support for churchs error
  • consciously and maliciously
  • ignorance or weakness

29
Dealing with the Excommunicated or
Fellowship-Terminated
  • 2 Thessalonians 36,13-15
  • No religious fellowship.
  • Family, social ties careful not to undermine
    churchs action.
  • Continue to evangelize with law and gospel.

30
Summary
  • Fellowship in unity of faith is a wonderful
    blessing of Gods church.

31
Summary
  • Church fellowship is extended and maintained when
    Christians
  • Grow in faith.
  • Show love for each other.
  • Honor those who preach and teach.
  • Give help to the needy.
  • Practice church discipline.

32
Closing Prayer
  • We thank you, Lord, for the fellowship and
    unity that we enjoy in our church. Thanks for
    showing us many ways we can work to together to
    preserve and extend this fellowship. Now through
    the power of your Holy Spirit, fill us with
    energy and enthusiasm so that we work hard to
    preserve and extend our fellowship of faith.
    Amen.
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