Are You Lovin’ The Brotherhood?

Brotherhood.FC

This week Norma Jean and I are blessed  to be on the campus of Florida College to attend their annual lecture series.  It’s a special place for us.

FC is where we met.  Dated.  And were engaged to be married.  I played basketball for FC on their first scholarship team.  At FC I was privileged to meet and learn from some great men of God.  Clinton Hamilton.  Edgar Srygley. Homer Hailey.  Bob Owen. Melvin Curry.  Harry Payne Sr. And James R. Cope.

While at FC I first heard the preaching of men like James P. Miller. Franklin Puckett. H.E Phillips. Rufus Clifford Sr.  And Paul Andrews.   At FC friendships were developed that have lasted a lifetime.  And at FC I was exposed to the greater community of “the brotherhood of believers.”

So last night was a wonderful pleasure to join with many brethren from all over the United States in singing, praying and reflecting on God’s word.    There was joy in seeing old friends.  Of sharing hugs and handshakes.  Smiles and tears.  And some good memories of by gone days.

In such gatherings, I am reminded of the Bible’s exhortation regarding the brotherhood.  Here’s the context of what Peter says:

Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority,  or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king. (1 Peter 2:13-17, NIV)

This section is about relationships.  The Christian’s relationship and responsibility to governmental authorities  To non-believers. To our fellow-man.  To God. And to our Christian brethren.

The word,  “brotherhood, ” according to Greek scholars Vine and Thayer,  means “a band of brothers.”  “A feeling of brotherliness.”  “The Christian fraternity. “ ”A fellow-believer, united to another by the bond of affection; so most frequently of Christians, constituting as it were but a single family.”  “Denotes a near kinsman”; in the plural, “a community based on identity of origin or life.”

It is interesting that the brotherhood is singled out for particular attention.  While it’s true that New Testament churches were independent, autonomous, self-governing groups, there should be a bond of filial affection and affinity  among all believers.  In an age of independence and self-reliance, there is too much isolation from others who share commonality in Christ.

Love the brotherhood?  Absolutely!  For my taste, there’s a little too much criticism of the brotherhood.  And in the brotherhood.  What we need is more love.  Love the brotherhood because…

We are sharers of the same faith.

We are fellow travelers walking the same road.

We are partners together in God’s great work.

We are participants in the common salvation.

We are partakers of the Divine Nature.

We are companions of Christ’s suffering.

We are comrades in the fight against Satan.

We are members of God’s Family.

We are recipients of all spiritual blessings in Christ.

We are heirs together of the same heavenly inheritance.

Is the brotherhood perfect?  No.  Because I’m part of it!  And so are you!  We sin. Fall short. Make mistakes.  Require forgiveness.  Need grace.  And beg for mercy.   But there’s a lot to love.

By the way, the verb Peter uses calls for constant, continued action.  This exhortation is never more needed than today. “Keep on loving the brotherhood!”

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

3 Comments

Filed under Fellowship, Florida College Lectures

3 responses to “Are You Lovin’ The Brotherhood?

  1. Stephen Segrest

    In the past I’ve attended the FC Lecture series, but this year I didn’t see anything that really jumped out to me. Are there any specific lectures that you think would be especially insightful?

    • Stephen,

      It’s really hard to say.  A lot of it will depend of the application of the various speakers to the OT text.   Actually I’m looking forward to tonight’s lesson.  I know Kevin Clark will do a great job.  Others I want to hear include, Brent Hunter.  Perry Hall.  Tony Mauck.  Sewell Hall.    And there are others, but that’s a few I would recommend to you.

      BTW, the  7pm singing last night was incredible!  And it will be on Tues and Thurs as well.

      Hope this helps.

      Ken

      Ken Weliever 400 NW Highcliffe Dr Lee’s Summit, MO 64081 Home Phone: 816-600-5001 Cell Phone: 813-507-1726 Church Office: 816-761-2659 preacherman@weliever.net web site: http://www.weliever.net/ blog: http://www.thepreachersword.com/ Church web site:  http://hickmanchurch.com/

                  

      ________________________________

  2. David

    Old friends and memories are great. The part about to much isolation from others who share commonality in Christ, is such a true statement. If all fall short how can we isolate, it seems it would be the opposite.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s