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Apostles Fellowship

 

The Apostles Fellowship,

 

Fellowship from biblical perspective - Apostles Fellowship

The Apostles Fellowship

That ye also may have fellowship with us, (the apostles fellowship)

1 John 1:2-4

(For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

  • There is one already existing fellowship that we are invited to join “that ye may have fellowship with us” fellowship with the Father and the Son, here they, the apostles, invite us into that fellowship, the only fellowship for all believers.
  • We will see later that this fellowship, the apostles fellowship with the father and his son  is the same fellowship we will be joined into.

 

The Established Apostles Fellowship, 

Act 1:17-22

For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry. …and his bishoprick let another take. Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.

  • Here he uses the word “US” to show the established fellowship of the apostles. The reason was to be a witness with US.
  • Showing us non apostles the truth of the resurrection and they were looking for another witness of this resurrection to be a witness with them.

Inclusion in the apostles fellowship, one fellowship.

John 17:20 -26

Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.

  • Here he prays for the original apostles (apostles fellowship) and also includes more people in that apostles fellowship” Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me”
  • This was to be only one fellowship starting with the Father and Son, including apostles and then spreading to “ them also which shall believe on me” and then emphasizing oneness “that that they may be one, even as we are one”

Other fellowships exclude the unity of the apostles and are divisions (not the apostles fellowship)

1  Corinthians 1:9 -16

God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you. Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius; Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name. And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.

  • All other fellowships exclude the unity of the apostles and are divisions; they either exclude more then they should or include more then they should and the apostles won’t be in association.
  • This shows that you can even try to include an apostle in a new group and it is still nothing but a division. Also consider Gal 2:11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because …he withdrew and separated himself,…. this was not the apostles fellowship.

The direct connection of the believer with Christ. The apostles fellowship started with apostles and was extended to all… but not as a hierarchy.

1 John 2:24 -29

Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life. These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him. And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.

  • No hierarchy; we don’t need someone to give us what to think, we are all taught the same way with the same Spirit. We are not taught by the church the church is taught by the Spirit of God and the apostles’ doctrine. There is no dependence of believers on a group or the church to learn the apostles doctrine.
  • Through the apostles’ doctrine we enjoy the apostles fellowship, being the fellowship with the Father and the Son – enabling us to abide in Him which gives this confidence and shall not be ashamed at his coming.
  • No development of truth from the apostles till now. Heard from the beginning to remain in the apostles fellowship we must remain in the apostles doctrine.
  • John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
  • Christ is the teacher and the lesson.

Abiding in the apostles fellowship.

Act 2:42

And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

  • In Corinthians 11 they were not abiding in the apostles doctrine their interpretation of the Lords supper was dividing people. “ this is not the Lord’s supper “ The apostle Paul returned them to the beginning and explained it again.  1 Corinthians  11:23 -25 For *I* received from the Lord, that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus, in the night in which he was delivered up, took bread, and having given thanks broke it , and said, This is my body, which is for you: this do in remembrance of me. In like manner also the cup, after having supped, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood: this do, as often as ye shall drink it , in remembrance of me.
  • This is apostles’ doctrine that we are to abide in that will not change until the Lord comes again. “For as often as ye shall eat this bread, and drink the cup, ye announce the death of the Lord, until he come.” verse 26
  • This is not a membership right of passage or display of in and outs. More of this as we consider false and true unity.

Heresy is leaving the apostles fellowship for the formation of groups.

Heresy, Heretic The word is from ‘to choose.’ The same Greek word is translated ‘sect’ and is applied to the sects among the Jews, as the Sadducees and the Pharisees. Acts 5: 17; Acts 15: 5; Acts 26: 5.

It was employed by the Jews respecting Christianity. Acts 24: 5, 14; Acts 28: 22.

Heresies and sects were developed early in the Church, they were the result of the working of the will of man in some form.

The root of the Greek word being ‘to choose’ shows that a heresy is something Peculiar. The doctrine held and enforced may be true in itself but may be exaggerated or put out of its connection. The common result is, a party or sect is formed. 1 Cor. 11: 19; Gal. 5: 20; 2 Peter 2: 1.

One who adheres to a heresy is a heretic, and after the first and second admonition is to be rejected. Titus 3: 10.

When a person is saved, that person becomes part of the church and is brought into the apostles’ fellowship and keeps the unity of the Spirit. If that person chooses to become a member of a sect, that person leaves the apostles’ fellowship and breaks the unity of the Spirit.

God having given in His word all things needed for the Church, there is no room for man’s choice or man’s will: he must be a humble receiver: cf. 1 Cor. 4: 7.

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