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The Ministry of Fellow Believers




November 2018
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Speaking on the “communion of saints” from the Apostles’ Creed, Witsius talks beautifully about the ways Christians minister one to another by faith. Even those untrained, non-ordained, can – by the communing grace of Christ by the Spirit – bring tremendous growth to other believers. Think over your own life – the number of Christians who have had an inordinate impact on you, even though they might not have been a pastor, an elder, or a missionary. Nevertheless, Christians ought to follow the “one another” passages of the New Testament and remember how they can impact others with His enabling help!

That we edify one another by the communication of spiritual gifts. This is the duty not merely of Pastors, but of believers of every class. This includes: administering reproof to an offending brother (Lev 19:17) – which, when guided by prudence, and dictated by love, obtains, in the issue, greater favor than the fulsome compliments of flattering lips (Prov 28:23); the instruction of the ignorant (Rom 15:14), mutual excitement to pious zeal (Heb 3:13); holy conferences, with fellowship in prayers and hymns (Eph 4:28, 5:19; Col 3:16). The communion of saints ought, doubtless, to flourish not only in churches, but also in private houses. And it is lamentable, that in the present state of Christianity, these exercises of social piety are become so antiquated, or are sometimes so injudiciously performed, that they are even hateful and odious to many…

That we seek in this communion the solace of our souls. What can be more delightful than the mutual fellowship of brethren, mingled together, as Tertullian expresses it, in spirit and soul (Ps 133)! What more amiable than the reciprocal offices of love, and the holy familiarity of the friends of God, edifying, admonishing, and comforting one another, and uniting in the same supplications and spiritual songs! How refreshing is it to the soul of an afflicted saint, if at any time he becomes languid in prayer, to encourage himself by the thought, that there are so many myriads of believers making intercession for him with our common Father! With what cordial congratulation does he rejoice in the gifts of the Divine liberality towards his brethren when he knows are granted for this purpose, that they may prove subservient to the general good, and that their salutary fruit may extend to himself also, as a part of the whole community! For of so ingenuous a nature is Christian charity, that, on account of the gathering together of all things in Christ, she considers what belongs to each of the brethren as her own. In this communion of Saints, in fine, there is a kind of prelude of heaven, where there will be no private or separate interest, but ONE GOD SHALL BE ALL IN ALL.



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