A Forgotten Tool of Spiritual Warfare (Part 1 of 2)
by Kelly McDonald JR.
American society is very fast paced. We try to get everywhere as fast as we can so we can pursue our heart-felt desires. In many ways, our culture has had an impact on how we view church. The forgotten weapon in spiritual warfare in church today is fellowship.
We come to church and leave so fast that we can easily neglect each other. There is great power in working together. Let’s take a moment and consider the example set by the early church.
“And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Acts 2:42).
“And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved” (Acts 2:46-47).
“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2b).
These few examples help us see that the early church understood the power of fellowship. They prayed together, ate together, and visited one another with heart-felt affection. One way to restore the community feeling to our churches is through fellowship. Our focus has to change from showing up to church for service and then leaving when it is over. This can lead to making church impersonal. This is something God had to address in my life many years ago.
Our perspective must change. Envision attending church as an opportunity to grow with other believers as we worship together. It is an opportunity to bless other people in the Body of Christ and also to receive help in our time of need. We each have a unique relationship with God and a unique life experience. Other people need to hear what you and I have learned. At the same time, there are areas where we need to improve and learn from others.
I would like to share with you a fact from history that will help you understand the part that fellowship plays in spiritual warfare. The Romans used to fight with a shield called a scutum. This shield was four feet tall and two feet wide. It was designed to cover the majority of a soldier’s body. A group of Roman soldiers with these shields fought in a single unit. Those in the front linked their shields side by side. Those in the second row would lift their shields over the heads of the soldiers in front of them. The third row would to the same. This formed a “turtle” formation of protection as they marched forward.
This type of formation required teamwork; it also teaches us a great spiritual lesson.
We will learn more in the second part of this two-part series.
Kelly is president of the BSA. You can follow him at www.kellymcdonaldjr.com