‘And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.’ Romans 15:14.
Other translations render the word ‘admonish’ as ‘instruct’ and ‘teach’. A companion verse (and there are many) is Colossians 3:16,
‘Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.’ Colossians 3:16 NIV.
As we continue to meet together let us seek to obey the Lord and His Word by seeking to practice true biblical ‘koinonia’, fellowship that is based on seeking to comfort, encourage, edify and build up one another ‘…and so much the more as we see the day [of His return] approaching’.
‘Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting (encourage –GNT) one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.’ Hebrews 10:25.
From your personal walk with the Lord seek to bring words of encouragment, exhortation, teaching, warning, admonishment’ testimony so that we can receive the full reward He is bringing with Him on that day.
‘For God is not unrighteous (unfair –GNT) to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. (the love you showed for him in the help you gave and are still giving to other Christians. GNT)’ Hebrews 6:10
I urge you to open your Bible and read the entire context of Hebrews 6:10 so that the full import of what the writer is seeking to convey to the Hebrew believers will impact your heart. So many passages in the NT centre on our care and love for our fellow believers. Yet, tragically, in our so very busy age, we often neglect this primary thing. The scripture still says,
‘And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season [at the return of Christ] we shall reap, if we faint not. 10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.’ Galatians 6: 9-10. Again, please read the context.
Note: This includes hospitality…
‘Use hospitality one to another without grudging.’ 1 Peter 4:9
‘Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.’ Romans 12:13
At this time of the year we tend to focus almost exclusively on our own immediate family. I believe it should be ‘both and’, not ‘either or’, as challenging as that may be. We need to bear in mind that the body of Christ, our own ‘family’ of faith, the local ekklesia is the sphere where we practice Biblical ‘love for one another’ (John 15:12). We cannot truly practice, in any meaningful and personal sense, koinonia with the wider body of Christ, but we can with our ‘local family of faith’. I believe that is why the NT idea of the ekklesia is always found in homes, not special purpose buildings that we ‘go to’ with all their cost and maintenance and associated formality and impersonal relationships. In a private home you tend to be much more ‘real’ and ‘genuine’ and, dare I say it –sincere. Attempts to compensate, however genuinely attempted, just cannot replace the ‘church in the home’ concept of the New Testament.
So, let us come prepared to minister to one another –even if its just your presence with a smile and a willingness to join in as we pray for each other by saying ‘Amen’ (so let it be).