What did Jesus’ bro-night look like ? While he often slipped off to be alone with his Father, Jesus also made sure to spend quality time with his disciples. He often would take them aside to expound on the things he had taught to the masses. In one memorable scene, Jesus was praying with his disciples and one of them asked him, “Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1-4). He took the opportunity to teach them the Lord’s Prayer. This prayer has been the template that generations of Christians have used to approach God in prayer both individually and corporately.
Jesus made sure that he and his disciples were meditating on Scripture…together! Their conversations did not just consist of the top plays from the Gallilee Giants vs. the Jerusalem Juggernauts game or Martha’s most recent roasted fish recipe. Jesus was always about the Father’s business (Luke 2:49), and this meant consistently directing the conversation toward the deeper things of God.
What do you chew on during bro-night or girl’s night out? I hope it’s not just chips and crack dip. Be intentional about chewing on the Word – together!
Often in our Christian circles, we associate fellowship with food and fun. In fact, the thought of having a time of fellowship with no casserole present is tantamount to blasphemy. While there is a precedent for fellowshipping over food (and wine for that matter) in Scripture, The necessary ingredients for biblical fellowship are neither food nor fun, casserole nor sports-talk . There are two necessary elements to enjoy godly, biblical fellowship: believers and the Word of God. Biblical fellowship is chewing the Word together!
Necessary Element for Biblical Fellowship # 1: The Bread of the Word
“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
– Matthew 4:4
The most glaringly obvious omission in most churches’ fellowship gatherings is the Bread of the Word. There’s usually plenty of bread, but very little if any of the Bread of God. I am not suggesting a sermon or even a teaching time during your pot-luck. I am simply arguing that perhaps your pot-luck “fellowship” is not biblical fellowship at all.
True, biblical fellowship is the people of God talking about the things of God .
If there is no discussion of the things of God, you are not fellowshipping, you are socializing. As Christians, we need both. This is why socializing often takes up so much of your time before (and sometimes during) Sunday school or small group. We need to socialize, but we must press on to deeper subjects. Socializing is just the appetizer before the meal, the chips and salsa before the whole enchilada !
How can we be more intentional about generating true godly fellowship in our Christiancircles? It will take intentionality and maturity. The best way to cultivate biblical fellowship is to ask good questions. Asking the right questions steers the conversation toward deeper, godly topics. Here are a few questions one of my mentors developed that you can use to organically generate biblical fellowship during your next bro-night:
- How is your [teaching, hospitality, deacon, etc…] ministry going?
- What do you enjoy most about it?
- What has the Lord been teaching you lately?
- Have you had any opportunities to share the gospel recently?
- Where in the Bible have you been reading lately?
- What impact has it had on you?
- How can I pray for you? – find the full article here –
Necessary Element for Biblical Fellowship # 2: Brothers
The other crucial element for godly fellowship is one or more brothers in Christ. This should be obvious, but for many Christians, they spend way too much time in and of the world and little to no time fellowshipping with their church family and fellow believers.
“That which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.”
– I John 1:3
Our fellowship with fellow believers is directly tied to our fellowship with God. When I first began growing in my relationship with God, it all started with a deep study of the Word of God. My communion with God was fantastic. The intimacy I felt there cannot be matched by any worldly relationship. However, it wasn’t long before I discovered that as a Christian, I desperately need other Christians to encourage, uplift, and exhort, and even challenge, correct, and rebuke me !
Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today,’ that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.”
– Hebrews 3:12-13
This text challenges us with this profound truth: we need each other! So where to start? Again, what we will need is intentionality and maturity. Here are some questions to chew on:
- How can you be more intentional this week to meet with a brother or sister in Christ?
- Who could you get together with bi-weekly or monthly to read and discuss Scripture together?
- Who do you surround yourself with to hold you accountable to grow in your relationship with God?
- Who do you trust with the deep things in your heart?
- To whom do you confess sin so they can pray for you that you may be healed (James 5:16)?
- What Christian brothers or sisters would be willing to meet you for a prayer breakfast where you can discuss how God is working in your life?
Go chew the Word! Together!