Ancient Elements Of Fellowship With God

Many Christians in countries without heavy persecution have numerous ways to enjoy fellowship with God through Jesus Christ. But no matter what godly means one uses to enhance their communion with God there are some basics that should always be present, some of which are found in a single verse in Genesis.
Ancient Elements Of Fellowship With God
Source - Image owned, uploaded and copyrighted 2016 by the author, Peter P. Macinta (BrotherPete).

Fellowship with God through Jesus Christ is a centerpiece of true Christianity. It was a centerpiece of faith in God before Christ was born. Those listed in Hebrews 11, and those like them, communed with God. These were people like you or I, sinners by nature, yet they put their trust in God. As they continued to spiritually walk with Him they were changed and learned to be spiritually upright by God whom loved them. God loves us no less.

Man had real close fellowship with God before he sinned, but lack of trust and disobedience to God ruined it. We

were in Adam and Eve and because God loved all of us very much they were not destroyed. As we read the account in Genesis 3 God promised redemption and then clothed Adam and Eve with animal skins. While the Word does not expressly say it, we may assume He slew an animal before them to depict His future mission as Christ. With that, it is very possible that God showed them how to build an altar and sacrifice unto Him. Later we see their sons, Cain and Abel, brought sacrifices to God, although only one was accepted.

Before and after the flood there were some who sought the presence of God. After the flood the record in Genesis moves rapidly in time until we read of an Abram who responded to the call of God to leave his home and homeland and travel to where God would lead him. God presented him with what could be described as a sevenfold promise in Genesis 12:1-3. Though he would err from time to time he trusted in walking with God who told him, “I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be perfect.” He sought YHVH and there were times he built altars.

Despite their age, God blessed Abram, renamed Abraham by God, and Sarah with a son from Sarah’s womb whom God directed to be called Isaac. Sarah later died, then Abraham, but though his godly father passed on Isaac rooted his faith in the one true God. And though he made errors, one of which was similar to his father’s (Genesis 26:6-11), and later encountered trouble from the Philistines (Genesis 26:13-22), Isaac continued to trust God.

At some point Isaac moved to Beersheba. We then read in Genesis 26:24, “And YHVH appeared unto him the same night, and said, ‘I am the God of Abraham your father: fear not, for I am with you, and will bless you, and multiply your seed for my servant Abraham’s sake.’” In response to this, Isaac “. . . built an altar there, and called upon the name of YHVH, and pitched his tent there: and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.” From Isaac’s response as recorded in verse 25 we will see four elements of fellowship with God.

I. Construct -  25a    

“And he built an altar there, . . . “

While there is that level of continual communion with God, those who have attained that level continue to find a way to make quality focused time with God. For Isaac, he took the time and the effort to construct an altar upon which he would offer sacrifices. Based upon later descriptions of altar building, his altar was constructed of uncut stone. This means our fellowship with Him is based not upon our works but upon faith in the finished work of Christ. The sacrifices that Isaac offered also pointed millenia ahead to the finished work of Christ.

As Isaac built that altar according to God’s way, we must establish and maintain our fellowship with God by God’s Way. Christ worshiped and, as He dwells within, we worship too. He prayed. We pray too. He read and studied the written Word of God, and so should we. He not only attended but also participated in the assemblies of the believers in the One true God, and so should we. He ministered to people, and we should too. He did all of this not as God in the flesh (though He was), but did so as we should and must, directed and empowered by the Holy Spirit.

II. Commune - 25b  

“. . . and called upon the name of YHVH, . . .”

Sometime after the flood much of the world returned to polytheism. Such was the case in Isaac’s day. Nevertheless he called upon the name of the One true God, YHVH, “the existing One.” {1} That Name in itself says an abundance about God and is expressed by various attributes of God throughout the entire Holy Bible. Idols, religions, fads, and faiths come an go, but there is only one “existing One”: He is all knowing, all powerful, all present, unchangeable, timeless and more.

After Christ completed His ministry on earth for us God then indicated in the Holy Scriptures that from that point on the Name of Jesus Christ was to be the only Name by which anyone could be saved (Acts 4:10-12, Philippians 2:9-11). Christ, all God and all Man, is the “bridge” between us and the God we have sinned against. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and no one comes to God unless they come in Christ (John 14:6). Today we are expected to fellowship with the Father through Christ.

Having fellowship with God includes numerous activities such as daily and continual worship, prayer, and fasting. It is to be remembered that prayer is not in one direction. Though we speak with God we are to listen for what He says to us. Usually this is not an audible voice but an impression. For me, that impression translates into words in my mind. Often I find He speaks through His presence whereby I sense something. It could be consolation, reprimand, challenge, warning, direction, love and more. In all, the element of communion with Him means the communication goes both ways: us to God and God to us.

III. Commit - 25c

“. . .  and pitched his tent there:  . . .”

Out of love God revealed Himself to Isaac at Beersheba. Out of love for God Isaac decided to pitch his tent there. When one surrenders


to Christ and receives the gracious forgiveness of sins along with many other blessings, why should they go anywhere else? No earthly thing can bring Eternal Life. A real disciple says, “Christ is all I need and want. I have no need to go anywhere else.”

In the 1990s Kelly Carpenter wrote a beautiful song, Draw Me Close. One line is, “I lay it all down again, to hear you say that I’m your friend.” {2} While genuinely praying “The Sinner’s Prayer” is good  we must realize that continued fellowship with God means a daily, and sometimes moment by moment, commitment to Him. Why so? Quite often the world encourages us to compromise our commitment to God. Never give in, not in the slightest. If you have given in ask God to forgive you, cleanse you and then empower you by His grace to be an overcomer.

IV. Crave  25d    

“. . . and there Isaac’s servants dug a well."

Isaac had his servants dig a well. While it is important for us to have food, it is vitally important for us to have water. And it is most important in the spiritual realm for us to desire the Living Water of God. Consider what Christ did and said as recorded in John 7:37-39, “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, ‘If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believes on me, as the Scripture has said, ‘out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.’‘ (But this spoke He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)”

Though one is satisfied in Christ, it is vitally important to crave more of Him all of the time. The very being of Christ should infuse us. This is the idea with being filled with the Holy Spirit and often referred to as being baptized with the Holy Spirit (Ghost) {3}. Sometime back I did a message (sermon) illustration by taking leavened bread and immersing it in grape juice. Every gap within that bread was eventually filled with juice. In fact, the root for the Greek {4} word for baptize carries the idea of infusion (and not just covering), like one might dye a cloth {5}.

As effort was required on the part of Isaac’s servants to dig a well so we too must endeavor to receive all of Christ our Savior. When we do so we grow stronger in Him. And as water refreshes us from the heat of the day or quenches our thirst, so the very life of Christ can continually revive us in this sin ladened world.

It is God’s great desire to restore fellowship with us. He has made the way through Jesus Christ. Let us forsake our sin along with this world and surrender our life to Him. Let us then use these ancient elements of fellowship with God to draw near unto Him. As we remain in Him we will spiritually flourish despite the corruption of the world around us. Let us remain in Him so we will be with Him for all eternity.

Notes:

{1} From an electronic version of Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance by James Strong incorporated in the Online Bible program, and so throughout the article whenever the ancient language is referred to and no other authority is cited.

{2} You may hear the song and see the lyrics of Draw Me Close at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aofdgn4_tOw .

{3} Please listen to Why You Need The Baptism In The Holy Spirit, the link for which is located at http://www.sapphirestreams.com/life/audioM.html#M278. Triond seems like it was dying at the time of this publication so the link to the article might not work. Hopefully the article will be relocated here at Experts Column some day.

{4} Most of the New Testament was originally written in Greek.

{5} Vine, W. E.: An Expository Dictionary Of New Testament Words (Flemming H. Revell Company, Old Tappan, NJ : 1966) Vol. 1, p 97

This article was written in the form of a sermon (message) outline with comments. God willing by June 30, 2016 (hopefully much sooner), you should be able to hear the actual message (sermon) by selecting a link at http://www.sapphirestreams.com/life/audioM.html#M407 .

Unless otherwise noted all Holy Scripture is from the 1769 Authorized Version with spelling of some words updated for our time in addition to changing LORD to YHVH as it rightly should be when the text so indicates. An * next to the abbreviation for another translation or version indicates the same for the text presented.

Not responsible for any advertisements appearing with this article nor am I necessarily in agreement with any of them. The statements of this paragraph hold true not only for this article, but for everything I have placed on the Internet.



Article Written By BrotherPete

I am a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, having served over forty years as a pastor. I graduated from Northeast Bible College of Green Lane Pennsylvania and have a Bachelors Degree in Bible. I am enthused about the Word of God and how it can make a positive change in the life of anyone once it is teamed up with faith and the Holy Spirit. I am happily married. Visit www.sapphirestreams.com.

Last updated on 22-07-2016 92 1

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  • nbillett  28-12-2016
    Jesus is the light that has pierced the world's darkness and as he travels, the light spreads by his very presence and is enforced by his words that challenge and confront. And his words are tied to his works: he touches people in their sicknesses, diseases and weaknesses; even in their sins.
    reply 0
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