Partners with the Spirit
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. (2 Corinthians 13:14)
Today’s prayer is one that most of us will have used often. In many Christian traditions these words of blessing – often called “the benediction” or “the grace” – are the final words of a service or meeting. But the final phrase of that prayer – “the fellowship of the Holy Spirit” – is more staggering than most of us realize, encompassing a powerful promise of God: a promise about us being partners with Him!
The word fellowship in Greek means “participation in something together.” One of its common uses in New Testament times was of a “business partnership.” Now – apply that to us and what we see is this: the Holy Spirit is saying, “I want us to be business partners! You and Me! And all these others that I’ve brought to the Father. I want us to be partners in the Father’s business!” And this “partnership” is the Spirit’s gift to us as much as grace is the gift of Jesus and love is the gift of the Father.
This “fellowship of the Holy Spirit” is not some warm glow or cozy spiritual feeling to make us feel good as we leave a meeting; rather, it is the assurance of the Spirit’s presence as we go out into the world to make a difference, and the assurance of the Spirit’s uniting us with other members of the Body of Christ so that we know we are not alone. Fellowship with the Spirit will always be demonstrated in fellowship with one another – and if it doesn”t, then there is something terribly wrong.
Today, remember that you are not left alone to “struggle through” life. If you have put your trust in Christ, then you too are a business partner with the Spirit of God Himself – and with all God’s people! What an encouragement that should be to each one of us!
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. (Philippians 2:1-2)
Copyright © 2017 Martin Manser and Mike Beaumont
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