CONNECTION, RELATIONSHIP, & FELLOWSHIP

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1 CONNECTION, RELATIONSHIP, & FELLOWSHIP Dr. Kenneth W. Jones, Pastor, Practical Living Ministry

2 Why This Message? Who we are is dependent upon our relationship with God and with one another We were created for connection and relationship. To live outside of connection and relationship is detrimental to our well being and spiritual development. What separates the Christian from the world should be revealed in one s walk with God. When the Bible speaks of "walking," it often refers to a lifestyle.

3 Scripture Colossians 1:10 - That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; There are few prayers annotated in Scripture where Paul prayed for the believers. He initially prayed that the believers would be filled with knowledge of God s will strengthened by a spiritual understanding(vs.9) Paul prayed that they would live according to the knowledge they received This spiritual walk Paul speaks of is in comparison with Enoch Being fruitful in every good work - This is one way in which we are to walk worthy of the Lord, and so as to please him. And increasing in the knowledge of God We please God by endeavoring to become better acquainted with His true character

4 A Fruitful Work Knowledge influences behavior or lifestyle; our fruitfulness is linked to our desire to please God. We are to be fruitful in every good work that we do to please God, not man Walk worthy" of him, is to walk by faith in him; to walk after his Spirit, and according to His Word, and in His ordinances; to have the conversation as becomes His Gospel.

5 A Fruitful Work Our knowledge of God influences our relationship with Him as well. We become empowered by the Holy Spirit as we understand our rights and privileges as children of the Most High God Many Christians are doing things today that are not pleasing to God nor is it a fruitful work Being fruitful is not just displaying a godly character as defined in Gal 5:22,23, but we are required to produce for the kingdom (John 15:8) to produce a fruitful work of the following: Disciples evangelizing and instructing others to become disciplined followers of God Deliverance restoring and recovering people for the kingdom of God Devoted Acts- ministering to those who are in need, support, counseling, and love

6 Summing Up Colossians 1:20 Walking Worthy Is your lifestyle worthy of one as becometh saints (reflecting the character of a Christian), bringing Glory to God? (Eph 5:3) Unto all pleasing We please God by faith (Heb 11:6). Do you trust God and believe that He is who He says He is? (Romans 4:20-22). He obtained right standing with God (imputed righteousness) as his faith pleased God. Being Fruitful in Every Good Work Are you not only producing spiritual fruit, but fruit for the kingdom? Increasing in the Knowledge of God Knowledge is essential for Relationship (to know God (knowledge) is to know him (relationally)). As you increase in knowledge, you increase in relationship and this relationship creates a desire to know God more (Psalms 27:4)

7 Enoch Walked With God Genesis 5:22-24: Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. 22 Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. 23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. 24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Walking with God the development and maintaining of an intimate and knowledgeable experience with God on a consistent relationship basis Habitual fellowship with God (Constant & Consistent) Walking in agreement with God (Amos 3:3). Walking with God implies community with him in thought, word, and deed, and is opposed in Scripture to walking contrary to him.

8 Enoch Notice Enoch walked with God after he became a Father The first 65 years, Enoch wasn t walking with the Lord There is a beginning to this walk Sometimes, we think our relationships hinder our relationship with God The term walk speaks of a sustained life. The transformed character of the new birth leads to a transformed life. To walk also implies a path just as David describes in Psalms 1 Notice carefully that it is said that Enoch walked with God. It did not say that God walked with Enoch. It is Enoch walking with God. The idea is that Enoch was going in the direction that God was.

9 Walking With God Hebrews 11:5 - By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; AND HE WAS NOT FOUND BECAUSE GOD TOOK HIM UP; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God. You can not walk with God, or please God, apart from faith. (Hebrews 11:6) Jude vs 14 says Enoch was a prophet - He walked in the name and fear of God, according to His will, in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord then made known; he walked by faith in the promises of God, and in the view of the Messiah, the promised seed. Enoch provides us a model for walking with God.

10 Walking With God is Profitable Deuteronomy 5:33 - "You shall walk in all the way which the LORD your God has commanded you, that you may live and that it may be well with you, and that you may prolong your days in the land which you will possess. Every command of God is rooted in love for us, not some obsessive desire for control, or mean-spirited attitude towards us. Walking in the way of the Lord requires submission and obedience which leads to a prosperous life

11 Identifying Those Who Walk With God They live a separated life Philippians 2:15 - That you may show yourselves to be blameless and guileless, innocent and uncontaminated, children of God without blemish (faultless, unrebukable) in the midst of a crooked and wicked generation [spiritually perverted and perverse], among whom you are seen as bright lights (stars or beacons shining out clearly) in the [dark] world, (Amplified) They produce godly fruit (Galatians 5:22) rather than fleshly desires They are recognized as people who have been with Jesus (Acts 4:13) They walk with a greater revelation of God s character and purpose They are not so easily deceived They operate in the power or might of the Lord (Ephesians 6:10) They do exploits for God

12 Relationship & Power Without relationship there is no covenant & without covenant there is no power. Covenant helps you understand the power that you have. Acts 19:13-16: But also some of the Jewish exorcists, who went from place to place, attempted to name over those who had the evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, "I adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preaches. 14 Seven sons of one Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said to them, "I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you? 16 And the man, in whom was the evil spirit, leaped on them and subdued all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.

13 Without Relationship The demon ignored the Sons of Sceva because they had no relationship with God. The evil spirit knew exactly who Jesus was, and knew exactly who Paul was, but didn t know who the seven sons of Sceva were. Apparently, evil spirits know who their enemies are and they don t waste their effort knowing those who aren t a threat to them. Jesus cast out devils (Matthew 8:29) and so did Paul (Acts 19:2) The evil spirit recognized the lack of relationship - You belong neither to Jesus nor Paul, and you have no right or authority to at tempt to work miracles in the name of either.

14 They That Know God Daniel 11:32 - And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. But the people that do know their God - They who adhere to the service and worship of the true God, and who are incapable of being seduced to apostasy and sin. When Antiochus Epiphanes turned on Jerusalem, the Jewish people were divided. Some forsook their covenant with God and embraced Greek culture. The natural or reprobate man is not connected or in covenant with God. The transforming power to become a son of God comes to believing and receiving Jesus (John 1:12). This is why the flesh has to die in order to experience the fullness of the power of God. This is why Satan attacks us to keep our flesh active

15 What is This Type of Knowledge Relational knowledge of God intimate knowledge gained through a relationship with Him (Psalms 27:4) Philippians 3:10 - That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; That I may know him - That I may be fully acquainted with his nature, his character, his work, and with the salvation which he has worked out. This knowledge conforms us into the image of God by receiving the nature of Christ through the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 3:17; John 14:23)

16 Unreliable Knowledge Experiential knowledge knowledge gained by experience; The God I experience Psalms 119:7 - I will praise and give thanks to You with uprightness of heart when I learn [by sanctified experiences] Your righteous judgments [Your decisions against and punishments for particular lines of thought and conduct]. Knowledge is limited to how you define the experience or the experience itself Discern and Judge the experience in light of God s Word You can t live and grow spiritually on experiences alone

17 Unreliable Knowledge Seeking God through a mystical knowledge Mysticism is the belief that spiritual reality is perceived apart from the human intellect and natural senses. It looks for truth internally, weighing feelings, intuition, and other internal sensations more heavily than objective, observable, external data. Mystical Knowledge: Gnosticism special claims of inner, mystical knowledge that only a few can obtain who are able to alter their consciousness or awareness of God Promotes self-help medical, educational and psychological programs employing methods such as meditation, philosophical programming, and selfhypnotic contemplation. Foundation of the Spiritual Formation movement

18 When the church reduces the demands of discipleship to establishing good relationships we often reduce it to nothing more than human effort and following rules. Transcendence without the Immanence Transcendence (God exists outside of space and time) and immanence (God is present within space and time) are both attributes of God. He is both nearby and far away, according to Jeremiah 23:23 Most religions have a transcendent knowledge of God meaning that they recognize Him as supreme and all powerful, but distant. Therefore, we have to appease him with rituals and sacraments in order to gain favor. This is pagan mentality But God is Also Immanent He is present with His creation. God guides, governs, and provides for His creation, even though He is so far above it

19 God Reveals Himself to Us Through Relationship Exodus 6:3 - And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them. El Shaddai The God Almighty; the All Sufficient One; God most powerful to be sufficient for you Though the patriarchs knew God Almighty (El Shaddai), they did not know Him as extensively and intimately as He would reveal Himself to Moses and his generation. They knew the power of God, but didn't have the same personal relationship and revelation Moses would come to know. (Exodus 3:14)

20 El Shaddai El means might and Shaddai means Mighty The Might that gives might will sustain you Shaddai also means: Breath Nourishment Supply Sustain What God is saying that I am mighty to nourish you; supply your every need; satisfy you and sustain you ( I will keep what I give in you)

21 Knowing God s Ways Psalms 103:7 - He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel. Ways means His laws, methods of administration, the principles on which God governs mankind and the conditions on which he saves people Works God s wonderful works the bad thing about works, is that people usually forget them (Psalms 78:11) Are you more familiar withy the Acts of God, the Ways of God)?

22 Relationship is Based Upon Our Belief that God is Hebrews 11:6 - But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. Romans 4:20,21: He (Abraham) staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; 21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. We reciprocate God s revealing Himself to us by trusting in Him and believing that He is who He say He is which should cause us to expect something from Him "These two elements seem most simple, but, alas, how many professing Christians act as if God were not living; and how many others, though seeking after Him, are not expecting from Him as Rewarder!" (Newell)

23 Example: Getting Hired for a Job You will receive a benefits package It s your because you are an employee of the company It s provided for you as an incentive to work there You will never know the goodness of your package unless you exercise and utilize your benefits Read the Job Description Even though the benefits are great, you are required to work. You were hired based upon an acceptance of an offer, but you are still expected to show up for work Many people ended up being fired or not performing effectively because they never read their actual job description (In our case as believers the Bible) As you are accepted, you are given access. You don t have to beg to get into the bill, you have been given rights and privileges to access when needed Know who you are working for Know the mission, vision, and services provided Your faithfulness will be rewarded Do well and you will get bonuses. You will be rewarded for faithful service You are part of a team Even an independent contractor has to work with people

24 Practical Living Ministry Practical Living Ministry exists to assist individuals, groups, and organizations to operate to their full God-given ability by sharing life changing principles for spiritual growth and development. If this message touched you, please let me hear from you. If you would like to encourage us financially to keep sharing these kind of messages, please go to our donation section on our website at If you would like to contact Dr. Jones for a speaking engagement at your church or event concerning biblical leadership, mentoring, and Christian culture. Please contact Pastor Kenneth Jones at

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