Forgiveness & Fellowship

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I John 1:1-2:1

Pastor Steve continued discussing strategies for fighting sin with a look at the third and fourth weapons—knowing our sin is forgiven and fellowship. He read all of 1 John 1 and the first verse of chapter 2 before reviewing the first four verses of chapter 1. He noted the Greek word for fellowship in verse 3 is koinonia, something that is unique to Christians. A believer here can meet a believer from China and instantly have fellowship despite the language and cultural barriers.

“The secret of fighting sin is having joy in something eternal, which is Jesus,” Steve said. “The temporary of sin is very empty and dry. Verse 6 (says), ‘If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie.’ That should scare all of us.”

However, he also pointed out verse 7 says if we walk in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. While that may sound like a contradiction, Steve said God is saying what we need to hear: if we are trying to look good while doing bad, we are hypocrites. We must be connected to the fellowship of the body of Christ because they hold us accountable and love us as they struggle alongside us.

“The hallmark of a Christian is someone who fights the sin,” Steve said. “Our solution is in verse 9: He forgives and cleanses us. . . . He is faithful and just to forgive us out sun. He cleanses us from unrighteousness. He doesn’t renovate us . . . Jesus takes a grenade, blows (old windows) away and builds a new window. The weapon of our warfare is knowing the Rescuer who cleanses us of unrighteousness.”

In waging this warfare against sin God is bringing us closer to Him—as long as we confess it and get it out. Steve said one reason the “Woven Women” group is such a powerful ministry is the women “vomit out” their problems and deal with them. We all need that kind of fellowship and accountability, although the church in the West struggles with this idea because of the John Wayne-rugged individual image we have to overcome.

The men will be starting a similar group and although the food and socializing will be different, Steve said, “Men, your wives are begging you to come to this group.”