Fellowship with Jesus

June 21, 2022

 “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” (1 Corinthians 1:9, NASB) You and I have been called by God into fellowship with Jesus.  What a staggering statement!  Having fellowship with Jesus means that we can enjoy a close relationship with Him.  It means that we share in His life, His light, His nature, and His glory.  We cannot obtain this fellowship by our own means or our own goodness.  It took God to call us into this relationship with His Son.  He called us by His grace through the cross of Christ.

This truth—that we have fellowship with Jesus—should have a profound impact on our lives. 

It should change the way that we think of ourselves.  We know we are sinful people who fall well short of God’s holy standard.  And yet, despite our weakness and struggles with sin, we have fellowship with Jesus.  If we continue to walk in the light, that fellowship with Him continues unbroken.  And because of our fellowship with Jesus, God looks at us with deep love and compassion, as a father looks upon his children.  Because of our fellowship with Jesus, He will remember our sins no more.  Because of our fellowship with Jesus, we can rightfully think of ourselves as right with God—and this changes everything!  What joy and peace we can have, what freedom, what confidence we can have before God if we could just understand that we have fellowship with Him.

An understanding of our fellowship with Jesus should cause us to want to live for Him.  It should cause us to gladly flee from sin.  It should cause us to abhor what is evil and cling to what is good because we don’t want anything destroying that sweet fellowship.

An understanding of our fellowship with Jesus will show itself as an eagerness to maintain our fellowship with one another.  Our fellowship with each other is a result of our fellowship with Him, and to willfully destroy fellowship with a brother or sister is to destroy our fellowship with Jesus.  Therefore, I will never promote divisions, factions, loveless attitudes, or bitterness among the Lord’s people.

You have been called by God into fellowship with Jesus Christ!  May this precious truth permeate every aspect of our lives!

—Scott Colvin


Being of the Same Mind

March 8, 2022

One important concept that we often see in the scriptures is that we should be of the same mind.  Paul tells the church at Philippi to, “Make my joy complete by being of the same mind…” (Philippians 2:2, NASB) What does it mean to be of the same mind?  Does it mean that we should all have the same opinions about every topic?  Does it mean that no one should be allowed to have a thought that differs from the majority? 

Let us look at some other instances where the phrase is used and try to determine the meaning.  Paul writes in Romans chapter 12, “Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly.” (Romans 12:16, NASB) Here we see that being of the same mind means not thinking too highly of yourself. It means associating with those who may be of low position.  In the church, the rich and poor, the formally educated and those who are not, the spiritually mature and immature are all one in Christ, and therefore we should have the same mind toward one another!

In Romans chapter 15 we read, “Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another…so that…you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us…” (Romans 15:5-7, NASB) Here we see that being of one mind is about accepting one another.  What does he mean by that?  This verse follows closely after Paul’s discussion in Romans chapter 14 about not passing judgement on the opinions of a brother or sister (we are speaking here of opinions, not of clear commands of the Lord).  We need to accept one another in Christ, even if we have different convictions about matters of opinion.  Being of the same mind is not about being in lockstep on every matter of opinion, but rather it is about accepting one another—despite our differences of opinion—because Christ has accepted us!  In fact, to demand complete uniformity on every matter of opinion in the church will destroy same-mindedness.

We need to strive to be of the same mind in the church, which means that we need to have the same care and concern for all.  We need to accept one another in Christ—no matter anyone’s so-called social status.  We need to live in harmony with one another in Christ—even if we have drawn different conclusions about various matters of opinion.  In so doing, we will be able to glorify our Father with one voice, as He desires.

—Scott Colvin


The Power of Habits

September 1, 2017

Habits are powerful. They are the things we do without having to think about them too much. They represent our routine. When they are good habits, they help us live the kind of life we want.

I’ve been working on healthy habits this year. I’m drinking more water and very little diet soda. I’m trying to eat right, which in my case involves counting calories. I’m walking daily and exercising. But I will confess that forming these new, healthy habits has not been easy, but it has been life changing. I wish I’d done it sooner

How long does it take to form a new habit? One number that is frequently heard is 21 days. This number doesn’t quite represent the original quotations from which it was taken. It would have been truer to say a minimum of 21 days. More recent research would such that it takes on average 66 days, but depending on the complexity of the behavior, it can take longer. But good habits are worth it.

Once you form a good habit, you do certain things routinely. Of course, the danger is that you will lose the habit if you keep breaking it. Habit formation doesn’t take perfection, but it does take consistency.

Spiritual formation also includes habits. I’ve learned important routines in my spiritual life, things that I automatically do. One of the habits I would like to suggest to you as we begin a new quarter in our Bible school program is participation in Bible class on Sunday morning and Wednesday night. For some of us, this is a habit. We don’t have to ponder whether we are going to go. We just go. We have formed this as a habit in our life.

Will every class meet a burning need in my life? Will every class give me a spiritual, mountain top experience? Probably not. I’ve had meals of physical food that were quite memorable. I’ve eaten food that didn’t appeal to me very much (for example, think about your least favorite leftovers), but was still nourishing. The same will probably be true as we attempt to provide spiritual food in our Bible classes. I’ve learned to find something worthwhile in the classes I attend and to be spiritually nourished by it. Besides another aspect of being together is fellowship and forming my identity with fellow Christians. This is even more important for our children.

I suspect in eternity we will not look back on time that we spent in Bible classes and say things like: I wish I’d slept in more. I wish I’d watched more TV. I wish I’d worked more. I wish I’d done more household chores, or whatever else we might have done with this time.

I hope that you will give this habit a try. Remember habit formation will probably take weeks to months. Consistency is important in forming this habit. But maybe at the end of that time, you will say what I’ve said about my new healthy habits: I wish I’d done it sooner.