Community is a fundamental aspect of the Christian faith. It is through our relationships with others that we experience love, support, and the opportunity to grow in our faith. The Bible provides us with many verses that highlight the importance of community. Here are a few:
The Early Church
Acts 2:42-47 (NIV) – “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
What an amazing picture of the early Christian community! They shared their resources, supported one another, and worshiped together. Consequently, The Lord blessed them with growth and community health. There are SO many important takeaways here.
The power of healthy community is underlined in these short verses which serve as an example as a goal that we should strive for in our churches today!
One Body, Many Parts
Romans 12:4-5 (NIV) – “For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.”
Here, Paul emphasizes the unity of believers in the body of Christ. We are all interconnected and depend on one another. Our relationships with other Christians are spiritual in nature and are to be cherished and honoured.
Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV) – “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
This verse reminds us of the importance of gathering together as a community of believers. We are called to encourage and support one another in our journey of faith. Who can you encourage today? You never know how much they might need it!
The Power Of Encouragement And Helping Each Other
1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV) – “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” In this verse, Paul encourages believers to uplift and edify one another. Our words and actions should build each other up and bring encouragement.
Galatians 6:2 (NIV) – “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
As followers of Christ, we are called to bear one another’s burdens and support each other in times of need. This verse reminds us of our responsibility to care for and help one another. Is there anything greater than finding a nurturing and emotionally supportive community??
Humility And Gentleness
Ephesians 4:2-3 (NIV) – “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”
These verses encourage believers to exhibit humility, gentleness, patience, and love towards one another. Our churches are often full of people who are different from us. Yet, Christ compels us to love one another with His love and to learn how to get along with people who are different from us.
What Does The Bible Say About Unity In Community?
Community is an integral part of human life, and as Christians, it holds even greater significance. The Bible offers profound insights on the importance of unity within a community.
God’s Design for Community
From the very beginning, God designed humans to live in community. In Genesis 2:18, God says, “It is not good for man to be alone.” This shows that God desires us to be in fellowship with one another, supporting and encouraging each other on our faith journeys.
Christ’s Call for Unity
In his ministry, Jesus emphasized the importance of unity among his followers. In John 17:20-21, Jesus prays for his disciples, saying, “I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one… so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” Jesus understood that unity within the community of believers would serve as a powerful testimony to the world, demonstrating the transforming power of the Gospel. When we love one another in this way, we are demonstrating Christ’s supernatural love for everyone! What a compelling love story that is!
Bearing One Another’s Burdens
The Bible encourages believers to support and care for one another. Galatians 6:2 states, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ.” As followers of Christ, we are called to bear one another’s burdens and support each other in times of need. This verse reminds us of our responsibility to care for and help one another.
Humility, Gentleness, and Patience
In Ephesians 4:2-3, the apostle Paul writes, “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” These verses encourage believers to exhibit humility, gentleness, patience, and love towards one another. Unity within the community of believers is fostered through these virtues, creating an environment of peace and harmony.
Building Up One Another
Romans 14:19 states, “Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.” This verse reminds us of our responsibility to build up and encourage one another in the faith. By supporting and uplifting one another, we contribute to the growth and maturity of the community.
Love and Forgiveness
In Colossians 3:13, believers are urged to “bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Unity within the community is strengthened when love and forgiveness are extended towards one another. By practicing forgiveness and showing love, we emulate the character of Christ and promote reconciliation within the community.
What Does The Bible Say About The Importance Of Community?
Here are some powerful elements we can expect from Biblical community:
Connection and Fellowship
The Bible emphasizes the importance of connecting with others and building meaningful relationships within a community. In Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, it states, “Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!”
Support and Encouragement
In Hebrews 10:24-25, believers are encouraged to “consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another.” Being part of a community provides a support system where individuals can receive encouragement and support in their spiritual journey. It allows believers to share their burdens, joys, and struggles with others who can empathize and offer guidance.
Wisdom and Maturity
Being part of a community provides opportunities for believers to become wise and mature. Proverbs 11:14 states, “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.” By asking advice and guidance from fellow believers, individuals can make better decisions and navigate through life’s challenges with the wisdom and maturity of the community.
Love and Forgiveness
In Colossians 3:13, believers are urged to “bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Unity within the community is strengthened when love and forgiveness are extended towards one another. By practicing forgiveness and showing love, we emulate the character of Christ and promote peaceful reconciliation.