The Character of True Christian Fellowship

Paradoxically, the more deeply we commit ourselves to loving fellowship with others, the more we shall be hurt; as sinners we shall fail one another again and again. Yet as we accept, with love and understanding, the foibles and frailties of others, the irritating habits that try our patience, that sins that we have to forgive, we shall be fulfilling the law of Christ, the law of love. Jesus had to bear all this from his disciples; if we want to follow him we must do the same. That is why Paul urges the Christians at Philippi to have the mind of Christ. Just as Jesus humbled himself and became a servant for our sake, so we must humble ourselves and serve one another out of love for him. We are to be concerned not only about our own interests, but also about the interests of others. We are not to judge or criticize but to love and forgive. We are not to dominate or exploit others, nor use them for some selfish advantage, nor mold them into our own image; instead we are to see in others the image of God to be honored and respected.

– David Watson, Called & Committed, pp. 33-34.

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