Friday, 15 September 2017 – The Importance of Divine Connections
Ephesians 2:19 So then ye are no more strangers and sojourners, but ye are fellow-citizens with the saints, and of the household of God, 20 being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the chief corner stone; 21 in whom each several building, fitly framed together, groweth into a holy temple in the Lord; 22 in whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God in the Spirit.
The letter to the Ephesian Christians is a masterpiece of revelation concerning the Church of the Lord Jesus. But I just want to lift one phrase out of this immensely full passage: We are fellow-citizens … fitly framed together growing into a holy temple.
A fellow-citizen is in contrast to a stranger (foreigner) and sojourner (tourist). As we have seen this week with the Greek word katlambano, a fellow-citizen is someone who has taken ownership, whereas the foreigner and tourist make no investment in the place they are visiting.
Paris is the most visited city in the world with more than 75 million tourists a year. Add to that the more than half a million people who come to Paris for their studies, and the huge number of foreign workers, and that makes for a city filled with people who are only passing through. And whereas tourism is the number one industry in Paris, it is only those who are residents that get to vote for those who actually run the city.
Paul uses the phrase fitly joined together only here and in chapter 4:16, and in both cases it speaks of people that God connects in a strategic manner that enables the body of Christ to grow and mature. Without those connections, the body CAN’T grow.
It is perhaps the single most important thing that I have learned over the years in terms of seeing God’s kingdom advance in the earth. The small part that I bring is so insignificant. But if I can connect with others in a strategic way, then what we bring together is powerful. This is why I believe it is important that every Christian should be a functioning partner in a local church family. And every local church should also be connected to a larger network of churches, or spiritual tribe. Our special relationships should never become walls that keep others out, but rather bridges of resources that can be shared with others.
So, find your place today in God’s family. And encourage your spiritual leaders to actively build healthy relationships with other leaders that will benefit all of the body of Christ.