A Study Guide From Koinonia The Call Of The Heart
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Koinonia The word has such a multitude of meanings that no single English word is adequate to express its depth and richness. It is a derivative of koinos, the word for common. Koinonia is a complex, rich, and thoroughly fascinating Greek approach to building community or teamwork. Koinonia embraced a strong commitment to Kalos k'agathos meaning "good and good", an inner goodness toward virtue, and an outer goodness toward social relationships. In the context of outer goodness, translated into English, the meaning of koinonia holds the idea of joint participation in something with someone, such as in a community, or team or an alliance or joint venture. Those who have studied the word find there is always an implication of action included in its meaning. The word is meaningrich too, since it is used in a variety of related contexts.
Koinonos means 'a sharer' as in to share with one another in a possession held in common. It implies the spirit of generous sharing or the act of giving as contrasted with selfish getting. When koinonia is present, the spirit of sharing and giving becomes tangible. In most contexts, generosity is not an abstract ideal, but a demonstrable action resulting in a tangible and realistic expression of giving.
In classical Greek, koinonein means "to have a share in a thing," as when two or more people hold something, or even all things, in common. It can mean "going shares" with others, thereby having "business dealings,â€? such as joint ownership of a ship. It can also imply "sharing an opinion" with someone, and therefore agreeing with him, or disagreeing in a congenial way. Only participation as a contributive member allows one to share in what others have. What is shared, received or given becomes the common ground through which Koinonia becomes real.
To create a bond between comrades is the meaning of koinonia when people are recognized, share their joy and pains together, and are united because of their common experiences, interests and goals. Fellowship creates a mutual bond which overrides each individualâ€™s pride, vanity, and individualism, fulfilling the human yearning with fraternity, belonging, and companionship. This meaning of koinonia accounts for the ease by which sharing and generosity flow. When combined with the spiritual implications of koinonia, fellowship provides a joint participation in Godâ€™s graces and denotes that common possession of spiritual values Fires, Apostolic Resource Centre,
Freedom Awaits You In This Place There’s a house awaiting you, where there is freedom and joy. Are you willing to visit? For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power. Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; Open an account that is never ending in its supply Paul describes this passage as a cause; I think that he is right in the way that he begins. His focus is on heaven not earth. The word cause in the Greek is a word that describes an account or in favour of. I like to suggest that Paul was seeing things from the heavenly perspective. See how he was bound to his commitment. He uses the analogy of a prisoner. When you think of it that way you know that he is never going to surrender to other ideologies. I think that is something that has been missing for a long time in our society, people are too easily led astray by other ideals and fads that only last for a little while and are always replaced by something else that needs more money or time. These things only last for a little time and then they die out. Only supplying temporary satisfaction. Well I believe that what we see here, from these writings is something that will last forever for it comes from heaven and not from earth. In other words it’s not mans its God’ Paul was open to hear what God was saying to him. He was endowed with the faculty to hear, this came about by him being obedient and willing to do what God was saying. How about you and me are we willing to do what God designed us to be a witness to the world. You are a child of God and you are anointed to witness to the world it’s not done by formulas that people say we should follow. God has made you unique and he has made you to be a creative people. That’s why we are here; we are here to put into this world, to be witness. Its time that we realised that it is by faith that we become a people that God’s wants us to be. So let’s encourage each other to do what He wants us to do. Too many times I have seen people dishearten by other people. By saying that they are no good. Or even worse than that, people saying that you cannot do that without permission in other words they want to control you and the promises of God. How sad it is that we want to be accepted more from man that we do about being the person that God intended us to be.
IT’S TIME TO STEP INTO A NEW DISPENSATION OF GRACE Paul uses the term Dispensation, what does this word mean, in the Greek it means the management of a household, or household affairs. Its time that we looked, at our responsibilities. T hat we have in the house of the God. We all live busy lifestyles and have many different responsibilities. But the most important one is living in the kingdom of God. For it is from that household that we inherit the life changing inheritance. There is no greater example in the Bible than the witness of Paul, chained to guards night and day. Is that how you feel? Living daily and no time to do anything let alone witness to the world. If that is so we can learn a lot from Paul’s circumstances. He had a different view to us, he saw from God’s perspective. There was something new about to happen and he was ready to be used. Are you willing to be used? There is something new about to happen in our day. We will be given many chances to witness to those we live with and with those around us at work and in our social lives. It is time for us to get our house in order, so that we can like Paul life in the Kingdom of God here on earth. Paul started by changing the people around him, the guards were chained to him they could not get away. Why not start there? In our homes and work places. It’s time to set God’s Grace into action. Speak freedom into peoples lives. In other words its time to set up the household that God wants you to manage.
REVELATION OF THE MYSTERY The word Revelation in the Greek means (to lay bear, making naked) the truth. It also means to make manifest. This is not like a manifesto given by the politicians this one is never changing in it’s promises. You see a mystery is something that's hidden, but with the revelation comes empowerment to see the mystery become real. That’s Paul's life-style, and that should be ours. So lets look at this mystery in greater detail. The mystery was that salvation was to come to all, that meant for the first time Gentiles (the nations) were to be accepted into the kingdom with no condemnation. To the Jews that was not acceptable. That was why Paul was in prison, they thought that they could stop him preaching. But Paul remembered the teaching of Jesus to go to Judah then to Samaria and then to the rest of the world. He started in the prison then wrote letters to the churches. And from those letters the church witnessed to the world. That's all it took, a relationship built up under the restrict of prison life. If you feel that live is like a prison. Maybe it’s time to renew your mind. The mystery has been revealed to us. Let us be the witness that shows revelation to our world today. UNDERSTAND MY KNOWLEDGE To understand my knowledge, what does that mean. To understand means to perceive with the mind, to have an understanding. So to understand the mystery that Paul talks about is to perceive with your mind the truth that is laid in front of us. To have knowledge in the Greek means that we should flow together with or a running together. So if we take this truth and put it into action, what do think the result will be? Let me tell you, it would be a reflection of Paul’s life. It would produce fruit that would bless the church and our nations
To have knowledge is not enough, we see enough of that around us today. People do things today because someone has given them knowledge to do the things we do. Which gets the job done. But what happens is that we follow blindly into situations that cause us problems. It’s understanding that we need today. It’s no longer good to just run with our ideas, but we must perceive with our heart the things of God and make them a living truth. It is only when we come into His promises that see fruit that is nourishing and full of life. IN AGES PAST Paul talks about in ages past, he was talking about before then they did not have the good news of Jesus. It was not revealed, it was not the right time. But then was and now is the time. The only thing is that we have forgotten this revelation. Or have we, I believe that some of us have not, there are a few out there in the world. Who are willing to stand their ground and too proclaim the good news. The words “sons of men” means that there is a two fold part to man. Body and soul, you see the revelation is a spiritual revelation and those that only see things two-dimensional as many people do today don’t understand this wonderful truth. They see things in the way of their senses. And with their own logic and experience. But God made man a three dimensional being; Body, Soul, Spirit. So when we get our spiritual side awakened then we see a totally new way of life. We start to live in the three-dimensional. That’s when we see things really begin to happen. Just think about the time, when you where saved things changed very rapidly. It’s the same when we start to walk in Spirit and in truth. So why not look forward to a live of change and a live full of the anointing that is IN CHRIST. For it is when we live in the anointed one and HIS anointing that we truly make a difference to everything around us. FELLOWHEIRS So how do we become fellow heirs, we do it by coming into line with the promises of God. It’s by faith that we should live. Hebrews 11:6 So, you see, it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that there is a God and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him. So by faith we are to live, because it is impossible to please God any other way. So lets come into agreement with the promises of God and to line them up with our circumstances so that we can inherit the things of God. THE EFFECTUAL WORKING This saying has a meaning that is not as we think of it, from it’s reading. It means the super natural power of God or the devil. In this passage it talks about a gift of grace. It was given by God to be an effectual working of His purposes. With power and life changing effect. Paul was given this so that he could preach to the Gentiles the unsearchables riches of Christ. It is up to us if we are going to respond to God and His promises. If you want to be an effectual witness then you have to stay obedient to your call. And keep your relationship with God foremost in your priorities. To be a person who is led by the Spirit and the truth, is to be a person who God uses and signs and wonders follow.
SO TO SUMMARIZE LETS LOOK AT HOW WE CAN BE IN THE RIGHT HOUSEHOLD AND UNDER THE RIGHT MANAGEMENT. —————————————————— SURRENDER DAILY KEEP THE RELATIONSHIP GOING KEEP THE PROMISES OF THE WORD KEEP GRACE IN MIND WITH EVERYTHING YOU DO PRACTICE DAILY THE PROMISES TO SEE SIGNS AND WONDERS
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It’s Time For Another Koinonia Moment V9 says that we are to make all see what is the administration of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden. God wants this mystery to be revealed, and what a privilege it is that we live in the here and now. As we have seen in the last study, the mystery is the revelation of Christ coming to all. He comes into history and administers His grace. And we are the generation who have been asked to proclaim these truths. In other words we are the vehicles by which God has chosen to let others know the mystery of Grace. Administration or fellowship in this verse is a little confusing, for the translators have used to words that mean very different meanings in our day, Administration is about being organised and fellowship is about meeting together. To get a better understanding of the word used here we need to go back to the Greek. The word Koinonia is used. How exciting that the mystery has a vehicle by which God wants to let others know the truth. And that vehicle is Koinonia, until we learn to understand and live a life full of Koinonia love. Then I am afraid we will never understand this mystery to it’s fullness. We need to be a community of people joined to each other in an atmosphere of love, participating in the life of the kingdom, living in it’s power and ministering to each other in peace and love, bearing with each other and giving each other time and space to know who we are IN CHRIST and THROUGH CHRIST. In other words it’s time that we let the little beacon that we call our life, shine amidst the darkness. The effect of such living The effects of such living will bring opposition. People, in their very nature are born with a defence system that wants to be controlled or have the power to control. God is much more gracious than this humanistic way of life. He wants us to have a choice, in other words He wants us to discover the wonderful freedom that we have IN CHRIST Jesus. Throughout history Christians have tried to use formulas and rules to bring people to the truth. But God is more interested in you not the formulas; He wants you to know Him personally. He sees things in a varied and wonderful way, He sees the wonderful array of colour that is there in each of our lives. There is so much more to our getting up and going to bed to sleep, then starting all over again. I would rather be in the position to see the mass of colour in my life than to live everyday without much to look forward too. God has designed it that way so let’s use it, let’s appreciate each other, give each other the space and the opportunity to express who they truly are. A wonderful, exciting, living testimony, to the Living God Almighty. Let’s declare this to everyone, those in the heaven and here on earth. Let’s give God all the praise for the wonderful way, in which e made each one of us. Amen. All this has been accomplished by the Lord Jesus and with boldness and confidence we should go to Him in faith. Let’s not get caught up in the tribulations that surround us, but lets see the wonderful way in which our God, our Lord Jesus paid the price so that we can live a life full of excitement about our possibilities. And not on what we see, but on who we are. Give it a go let Him administer or as we say Koinonia you today, you never know something wonderful may start to happen. Start to move in faith in the unseen and make it seen. With every cause there is an effect. So as Paul says in His writings it is time to renew the mind.
14 For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Is there is a reason for us being here? Paul writes this prayer to encourage believers to really go for it. He was always looking at things from God’s prospective. For this reason or as it says in the Greek, (on this account). This is a truth about all that we have learnt in the previous studies. Because we have started to walk in the way of the Lord, Paul is saying that, he now was going to intercede for them so that they would receive more revelation and power from God to witness to the world. Is that what you are looking and longing for? For me it is. I want to be the best witness for God that I can be. So don’t be afraid to let others show you the truth, don’t shy away from the word, because you feel that you don’t have enough knowledge. Who says that as you study God wont reveal Him self to you. Believe me, I have had more revelation from the word than from any man. The word is eternal, and its promises are sure and true. Just because we do not see them straight away does not mean that they are not true. We need to use faith to see the manifestation. For without faith it is impossible to please God. There is a cause or account that needs to be addressed in our day. It is time for those that are gifted with the gift of encouragement to come out from hiding behind the curtain of acceptance from a mans perspective. To move forward and pray for those that have been by-passed because they do not fit in.
THE TIME HAS COME TO SURRENDER OUR HEARTS When we come to the Lord in prayer, it is important to surrender all to him, it means giving over all of the days problems and to give him total control of our circumstances. Hard to do you say, well just look at Paul’s example he was in prison chained to security guards. No freedom as we know it, at any moment he faced death. And yet through all this he witnessed to the known world through letters. And how about those guards, what chance did they have, most would have put it the other way what1chance does Paul have. It’s looking At things from His prospective. So let’s surrender to your ways and to your precepts for they are life to all who hear.
ARE YOU IN THE RIGHT POSITION FOR AN INHERITANCE In verse 16 it says he would grant you that means in the Greek to furnish, in other words God wants to equip you to do what he has planned for you to do. The chances are that we are stopping the furnishing because we want do it our own way. It is our choice and God accepts that decision. We need to focus our hearts to live in the kingdom and not the world. He says that it is according to the riches of His glory. His riches are abundant and they are full of enriching experiences. The glory is the revelation, the opinion or view belonging to God. It’s the strengthening that’s required for us to accomplish God’s purposes. We need to be made strong, not by our own strength but by the power of our Almighty God. It’s when we receive from Him, that we become a people of God. It is the inner man that gets revelation. It’s soul that gets all that is necessary to become a light in the darkness. Claim your inheritance. Today spend time in prayer. Talk to a friend and get together with them and spend time in God’s presence. WHERE ARE YOUR ROOTS Christ wants to dwell in your hearts, what does that mean do we really understand that statement. Christ means The Anointed one and His anointing, just think about it he wants you to live with the anointing, operating under it’s authority. The key to that is our faith, first we have to believe it. That is called faith. Seeing in the unseen and seeing it manifest. To hold, all the truths of the anointing. In our hearts and being obedient to the call. We first need to be rooted, firmly fixed. Grounded in love, that means that we are established in love before anything else. For without love there is nothing. This is the time to get established in the truth. It’s time to allow the seeds to start growing into their purposes. To become a place where people can rest and shelter from the heat of their circumstances. People will naturally draw to you because of the anointing.
THERE IS A PLACE SO DEEP, WIDE AND LONG We will be able to see so much more when we start to move in this way. We need to be filled daily. That means that we need to surrender to our needs and to be obedient to God’s needs. You see He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask and think. This is the extraordinary, more than ordinary. And He wants that power to work in us. What a thought. Its not about money, its not about having lots of friends. Its about receiving the power that is in Acts 1:8.
EPHESIANS 4: 1-6 Your Invited to a Feast Paul now moves on to the next phase of our walk with Christ, in previous chapterâ€™s we saw that Paul was showing people that the first part of our walk is one of foundational truths. Chapter 1 is full of new beginnings. Chapter 2 is standard living practices. Chapter 3 is about us getting to a point of maturity. In other words it is about moving from milk to meat. Verse 9 is the vital part of the whole book. This is vehicle that moves us forward. With Paul praying for the people there now is opportunities for gifts to emerge. And that is where I would like to begin this passage. Do you know what God has made available to you; are you aware that God wants to use you to be a blessing? He wants you; yes you to be an ambassador for Him. Just think of all the opportunities there are around us. Are we making the most of them? So lets take the time to digest what we have learnt and apply it here. Is the right time to move into a new area of your Christian life, if you have understood what Paul has taught here then, yes we need to move on? God has invited us to the feast, what I mean by this is that there is a table of provision awaiting you, all we have to do is up. That does not seem to be to hard, does it? So far some one has introduced you to the Christian life. They have taken a grape from the table and brought it to you to taste. But it is only one grape, how much more is there waiting on the table of the Lord. The word worthy in verse one means; to walk or make the most of the opportunities that cross our path. To embrace Godâ€™s salvation and to show it to the world. With this all in mind lets get our teeth into some really good food.
What should our attitude be like? Verse 2, is full of the characteristics that we should have. There are 5 gracious parts to our attitude; 1.
Humble = A deep sense of oneâ€™s littleness
Gentle = mildness
Patient = endurance, perseverance
Forbearing = to hold up
Love = brotherly love
If we can approach all our situation with this divine attitude what a difference it would make to those around. Verse 3 is the way in which we administer the above attitudes. It says that we need to make every effort to keep unity. What does the word unity means, to be in agreement with something. Paul urges us to make every effort to keep in this agreement. I think that it is right through all that we have learnt previous to this point that we make a commitment to this act of unity. Lets take some time out and give it to God in prayer. It is only then that we can live in a peace that Paul describes.
VAH LA H
Verse 4 We are all parts of the body, and none of us are more important than others, the only difference is how willing are you, to the call put on your life. God gives us the choice. And when it comes to it there is always an effect to our decision making. Cause = Effect In other words what we decide to do will always cause an effect. That’s what Paul is saying, We need to be a body of believers going forward in like mindedness towards the precepts of God. For we are called, picked out to be a blessing to those around us. Start to see yourself that way and I promise you things can never be the same. .Let’s have a feast, for there in the presence of God we stand Ephesians 4:7-13 7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. 8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. 9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) 11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: v.7 God has no favorites in His church, we are all loved and cared for, not one of us is better than the other. So why do we think so when we meet. God may have gifted one with a certain gift. But God did not grant a person with a gift to be picked out. No He gave that gift to share with His creation. The word given in the Greek means to bestow or grant, when someone bestows something it’s an honor to the one receiving. And it needs to be treated with respect and to be used wisely. So if God has given us Grace it should be honored and used in such a way as to reflect the giver. God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. You see it was a delight for Him to show you Grace. There was a measure, in other words there was a limit to how much God was going to pay, and that measure is far beyond anything that you and I would have paid. It cost Him His Son, dying on the cross. In other words, in verse 7 we see an expression of God’s heart towards us. This is a gift we must never take for granted, it is an honor to receive His Grace.
H W EH
V.8. Is a turning point from verse 7. In this verse it says how He had the right to bestow the gift of Grace. This is a hinge as one of my favorite authors would say. It’s a door opening to a new beginning. Up to now in our studies we have seen everything that God wants us to be and everything that has given to us. Know He is asking us to become responsible in our walk. These gifts are to help achieve the call, to go out into the entire world and to let them know the good news. The word gift in this passage is to furnish or grant. God wants to equip you to do the job. His Son sacrificed everything to allow you to be in this position. v.9,10. Is a description of Jesus’ authority. It is showing the way Jesus took back all the authority that Adam handed over to the devil. Jesus is the supreme ruler over the whole universe. That means the past, the present, and the future. Nothing can escape from His knowing. The thing to remember through all this is that no one is beyond His help. Try to remember that when we mix with those around us.
V 11. Jesus gave to some the office of Apostles, Prophets, Evangelist, Pastor and Teachers. Lets look in more detail at these roles. When you are called to be in one of these offices it is a privilege that should not be taken for granted? That’s why there are these five, they are there to produce a balance, not one of any less importance than the other. Jesus bestows a gift, it’s not yours, and you have been furnished with it. Just think what a privilege it is to be fitted out in Gods choosing. Apostles are messengers sent with orders from God. They are eminent Christian teachers. Prophets, Interpreters of scripture. Spokesmen, receives inspiration, associated with Apostles, there to instruct, encourage, rebuke, convict and stimulate. Poetry is often used this way. Evangelist is the bringer of good news. Pastors are shepherds there to care and to control, they have committed themselves to watch for enemies, to defend, heal and find. To show love, to be in a place of trust. Teachers are fitted to be able to teach, with special assistance of the Holy Spirit. To Impart, instill and explain the scriptures, making them alive for the Christian. We should find these people in our lifes for they are the one’s that bring a perfect balance to our walk.
V 12. These offices are needed to fulfill the whole purpose of God, it is when we see these placements in our congregations will we see the purposes of God being fulfilled in our lives. This balance is necessary for us to grow into who we are meant to be. To prepare means that we have to be completely furnished in the wisdom and knowledge of God. We are to be filled so that we can be employed into our society to witness to it. V13. Until we reach unity. What is this unity we here so many people talk about does it exist. Well unity in the scriptures means coming into an agreement with God’s word. That means taking Gods word as truth and stepping out in faith, knowing that we have a God who is true and faithful in all things. Faith is believing in the thing unseen and bringing it into being. In other words leaving it to God to fulfill His word. I have seen many things happen when we surrender our thoughts about what is written and take it as truth what is written. Try it today I know you will be amazed at the outcome. The knowledge that we are given from God is correct and true, when it comes to the final word He must have it, for He created it all. It does not matter what we think or what others think. The only voice we should listen to is the one that takes the promises of the word and asks for the Holy Spirit to activate with power. The angels and all of Heaven are waiting for you to release the word and they are eager to do all that it says. When we start to operate in the Anointed one and His anointing (CHRIST) things begin to happen. We are IN CHRIST so lets start to believe it. It’s time to start to walk in the meat of His word. To leave the milk to those who have just started to walk the Christian walk. Find people today who reflect the ministries above.
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