Sermon – FellowSHIP (Romans 16:1 – 16:27) – Cornerstone Church Kingston
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Pete Woodcock, Romans 16:1 - 16:27, 30 January 2022

Taking a break from our series in 1 Peter, this week Pete looks into the message in Romans 16:1-27. In these verses we see how God has brought us together as a single body for the common cause of sharing the good news of the gospel.

Romans 16:1 - 16:27

16:1 I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant of the church at Cenchreae, that you may welcome her in the Lord in a way worthy of the saints, and help her in whatever she may need from you, for she has been a patron of many and of myself as well.

Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus, who risked their necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks but all the churches of the Gentiles give thanks as well. Greet also the church in their house. Greet my beloved Epaenetus, who was the first convert to Christ in Asia. Greet Mary, who has worked hard for you. Greet Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners. They are well known to the apostles, and they were in Christ before me. Greet Ampliatus, my beloved in the Lord. Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and my beloved Stachys. 10 Greet Apelles, who is approved in Christ. Greet those who belong to the family of Aristobulus. 11 Greet my kinsman Herodion. Greet those in the Lord who belong to the family of Narcissus. 12 Greet those workers in the Lord, Tryphaena and Tryphosa. Greet the beloved Persis, who has worked hard in the Lord. 13 Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord; also his mother, who has been a mother to me as well. 14 Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and the brothers who are with them. 15 Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas, and all the saints who are with them. 16 Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ greet you.

17 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. 18 For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. 19 For your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice over you, but I want you to be wise as to what is good and innocent as to what is evil. 20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

21 Timothy, my fellow worker, greets you; so do Lucius and Jason and Sosipater, my kinsmen.

22 I Tertius, who wrote this letter, greet you in the Lord.

23 Gaius, who is host to me and to the whole church, greets you. Erastus, the city treasurer, and our brother Quartus, greet you.

25 Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages 26 but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith—27 to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.


Transcript (Auto-generated)

This transcript has been automatically generated, and therefore may not be 100% accurate.

We're reading Romans chapter 16. It's the last chapter. We'll read that again next Friday, but Anne is gonna come up and read re wrote the whole of that chapter. So turn to that.

Roman's chapter 16 verse 1. I commend to you our sister Phoebe. A deacon of the church in Kancria. I ask you to receive her in the lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you. For she has been the benefactor of many people including me, Greek Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus.

They risk their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the gentiles are grateful to them. Greet also the church that meets at their house. Greet, my dear friend Eponitas, who was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia. Greek Mary who worked very hard for you.

Greet andronicus and junior, my fellow Jews who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among the apostles and they were in Christ before I was. Greet Ampliatis, my dear friend in the Lord. Greet Abanas, our fellow worker in Christ and my dear friend Stakis. Greek Apolis whose fidelity to Christ has stood the test.

Greet those who belong to the household of Aristobulus. Greek Herodian, my fellow due. Greet those in the household of narcissus who are in the lord. Greek Trifina and trifosa Those women who work hard in the lord. Greek my dear friend Persus, another woman who has worked very hard in the lord.

Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord and his mother who has been a mother to me too. Greet asynchronitus, pledge on hermes, Petrobras, Hermus, and the other brothers and sisters with them. Greek Philologist, Julia Narius and his sister and Olympus and all the Lord's people who are with them, greet 1 another with a holy kiss All the churches of Christ send greetings. I urge you brothers and sisters to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that a contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.

For such people are not serving our Lord Christ. But their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery, they deceive the minds of naive people. Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you. But I want you to be wise about what is good.

And innocent about what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. Timothy, my co worker sends his greetings to you. As do lucius, Jason and Saucipator, my fellow Jews.

I, tertius who wrote down this letter greet you in the Lord. Guayas whose hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy sends you his greetings. Erastus, who is the city's director of public works and our other quarters send you their greetings. Now to him who is able to establish you in accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ. In keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God so that all the gentiles might come to the obedience that comes from faith to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ, amen.

Now, we're going back, so it's it's about 3 and a bit years when we last looked at this chapter, and I wanna look at it again. And it really does fit with media fast and our prayers for the year and all the things that we're we're doing. So let me just pray. Father help us now, as we briefly look at this chapter, please speak to us, encourage us, and help us to be Christians that are about your work in Jesus' name. Our men.

Now if you hang around church or Christians, it isn't long before you really hear the word fellowship. Fellowship is something that you hear pretty quickly. It used to be at churches, they would say stay around after the service for fellowship around a cup of tea. It was all it was always that sort of thing and it when I first heard that because I wasn't brought up as Christian and I didn't understand I genuinely thought there was just a sort of 1 cup of tea because people talked about 1 cup and all that sort of stuff and we sort of stood around it. But it but but but that that isn't the case.

Church is in fact fellowship, and the Greek word that is used in the New Testament coinonia means companionship. A partnership Participation, working together, helping each other, sharing commonly together, communion, Yeah. It's a lovely word. It's a lovely family word, fellowship, and that's why we use it a lot. But it's an active word.

It's not a passive word. It's not just sitting back and enjoying a cup of tea. It's an active word. We're responding together we're working together for a common cause. That's not what the word is.

So if we're thinking about ship because it's fellowship, you know, like boat. Then let's think about that looking at this chapter in in in a minute. Ships If it's a fellowship, if it's working together, it is not a cruise ship. So Christian fellowship is not a cruise ship. Where we're all having a holiday just for our own leisure.

The only thing I have in common with people on a cruise ship is that I want to relax and enjoy myself, and I want pleasure, and so do they. So I choose to go to anything I want on the cruise ship or I choose to sit next to the people that I want to sit next to on a cruise ship, I guess, I've never been on 1. That is not fellowship. It's not a ferry, either, fellowship. Where the only thing we have in common is that we're just going from 1 destination to another.

That's a ferry. Now, it's true that Christians are going from this world's to the new creation, but fellowship is much more than just a ferry, people going in 1 direction, going to heaven. Fellorship in the bible is much more like a battleship or a cruise ship. Sorry, a rescue ship, not a cruise ship. A rescue ship, where each on the fellowship have tasks and jobs to do, We're fighting against the common enemy.

We're out there to rescue the lost that are drowning in the sea, and we've all got our own functions We're united, we accept each other, we've got a job to do. And therefore, on a fellowship, we need to be united, And that's what Paul has been talking about from chapter 12 of Romans. You'll read it next week. You know, we'll have the joy of reading it or this week rather. From chapter 12 right the way to chapter 16.

He's saying we need to accept each other. We need to build each other up We need to bear with 1 another. We need to serve 1 another as 1 body, we are to love 1 another. There's all this about our our work toward 1 another. Away from ourselves and and towards 1 another.

We're to use our gifts. We're to come into this world and confront the world of self centered me. Paul says in Romans chapter 12, we're to be trans formed from the me centered life to the 1 another centered life, renewing our minds living sacrificially in service of the captain of the fellowship and the people on the fellowship. So we shouldn't allow little issues to divide us. He'll warn us of that in a minute.

We should be careful of unimportant things that stop us going out working together rescuing the lost, and that's what those chapters are about. But we need to be united in that, but not only united in loving each other, but united in our task which is to rescue the lost. Yeah. We're not just a holy huddle. We're we're out there working together to take the good news of Jesus Christ.

The best news, the only news this world needs that there is someone who's died for our sins and risen again. There is new life in Christ. It's where you find yourself. It's where you are back to where you should be in relationship with God. That's the news this world needs.

And whatever type of people whether they're for whatever culture, whatever intellect, whatever class, that's the message they need, and we as a crew are working towards that. Yeah? So Paul's written this whole letter of Romans, which we're gonna read, and so that we understand what the gospel is, what the message is, And when we understand and we understand, we have a mission and therefore we'll be united in that mission. So we come to chapter 16. And when you first read it, I don't know whether you thought when Anne was reading all those fantastic names.

Did you note noticed a bloke. It was like sausage platter. Mine. I don't know if it's because I'm hungry. But anyway, in it, there's these greek And when you first read it and when when Anne read it, you might have thought, this is like, you know, those of you are teachers.

This is this is what we have to do every morning. Sausage platter here, you know, tertius here. It sounds like a a registry call. But actually, when you look at it a little more carefully, we'll just have a little glimpse of it. This is an example of what a fellowship is like.

This is what he means by fellowship. This is the crew on the ship we're gonna have a look at. It's the Rome ship and the crew on it. So let's just go through it quickly. Imagine you're walking onto this fellowship, called the Church of Rome.

You're walking on going over that little gangplank thing. You come the first thing you see is a divert the diversity of people. This is a diverse crew on the fellowship. There's people from all over and different backgrounds on the fellowship. There are 33 named people on this fellowship that Anne just read.

33. Then there's households that are mentioned, and then there's people that are not named. But all of these people are real people. It's it's like Paul writing and naming you. These these are these are real people with backgrounds of having different joys and sorrows and difficulties and hopes in their life.

But they're united with this common cause. They're on the fellowship. But there's diversity, a wonderful diversity. Look at verse 9. It seems to suggest there are people from town and country.

In verse 9, says, greet urbanness, our fellow worker in Christ, and my dear friend Stachis. Now, urbanists suggest that he's come from the city. Yeah? Well, that's the old urbanist bloke. He's from the urban to He's from the city.

Stachius means ear of corn. Yeah? So it suggests he might be from the country. So you've got people as diverse as that. Urbanness city, loves the city perhaps, ear of corn loves to be out in the fields.

You've got slaves and sovereigns here in verse 14. That name Hermes. That's a slave name. That was used for slaves. He's the worker of the gods.

But look at verse 11, you've got a bloke called Harodian mentioned here. And this this family of herodian mentioned. That's connected to sort of royalty. I mean, that herod, whole, that King stuff, ruling. So you've got slave and ruler.

Look at the look at verse 10, the second the household of Aristobulus, or however you say his name. Yet, you look up that name. I looked up these names to see what you could get in history, there is a big suggestion that he's well rooted and connected, the household of Astoro whatever whatever he is. To the Emperor Claudia. Do you see what's going on here?

You've got, you know, town and country, slave and sovereignty. You've got Jew and Gentle. On this ship. Look at verse 7. Andronicus and junior, my fellow Jews, Jews.

Look at verse 5. Greek my dear friend, Apinatus, who was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia. Well, clearly, he's a he's a he's a he's a Greek, he's a gentile, Jew and gentile mixing, different cultures. You've got young and old in the faith. Look at verse 3, Priscilla and Aquila.

They're old faithful workers of Paul, if you read the book of acts. But then, epinetus, who we've just seen, he's a new convert. Yeah? So old and young in You've got men and women. There's a whole load of men I'm not gonna read.

But look at the women, look, verse 1, Phoebe, verse 3, Priscilla, verse 6, Mary. Verse 12, triphina and trifosa verse 13, the mother of rup rufus, and then there's all these men mentioned. Women and men working together. We never belittle the women in the church. We never belittle women in the church.

I mean, it's extraordinary that even today, people say you hear people say, Paul didn't like women. Where do people get this nonsense from? Who made that up? Who's the first person to say that? Because they need to be sorted out.

Right? Because he's loving the women. You can't build the church. You can't have a fellowship without women. And men working together.

So it's wonderful. So you've got this diverse crew, on this fellowship. The barriers of the world that divide the world, men and women's slave and sovereign country and town, Jew and Gentle, that the things that they divide the world are not allowed to divide the church. On fellowship, on the fellowship. Because these diverse people are united in Christ.

Look at look at verse 7. I'm just whizzing through this stuff. In Christ, verse 11. In the lord, verse 12, in the lord, verse 13, chosen in the lord, verse 14, brothers, verse 15, the lord's people. If you're in him, you're in the church.

If you're in Christ, You're on the fellowship. Yeah. It's wonderful. The diversity is wonderful. And that's what we want Cornerstone Church to be.

We want more diversity. If you're from whatever kind of brilliant, whatever flavor person you are in the world, come into this hodgepodge, come into the fellow, the fellowship. It's wonderful having people from different countries and different backgrounds. It's not that we are just about bear you. We love it.

Yeah. It's diverse. We want when we started off we were basically students, weren't we? Well, I wasn't, but, you know, I was the oldest person in the church, and we prayed, lord, bring other people, bring older people, bring people from other nations. A diverse crew on fellowship.

That's the first point. Second point is a dedicated crew. In Romans 12, you'll see it when we read through, Paul writes about the church as a team or rather as a body as a body. And the body is made up of all kinds of different parts, and those different parts are all very useful. And we need all of the parts to work the body.

To be dedicated to each other. If a battleship or a rescue ship is to do its job, each person has their part. There aren't passengers on a battleship or on a rescue ship, except those who've just been pulled out of the water, Except those that in the fight have been blown to bits a bit and need to be in the hospital, then we care for them. We'd look after them, but there's no holiday makers on a battleship or a rescue ship. They're dedicated, committed.

Let me just take you through some people. Phoebe. We've just got a Phoebe, haven't we? Well, no, it's about a year old now. But it's lovely to have a Phoebe in the church.

But verses 1 to 2 tells us why it's lovely to have a Phoebe. I commend to you, our sister Phoebe, a deacon, of the church in syncria. I ask you to receive her in the lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been a benefactor of many people including me, Phoebe, top of the list, a woman, feeding, top of the list in this crew. Verse 1 and 2, Phoebe. He's over the moon about her.

She's a deacon which means servant. She's a servant. She's a benefactor. He says, of the whole church including me. That that means not just giving money, not just being a patron s.

Not just giving money but giving her life, her resources. It it's got the word it's a sort of word of giving sucker like a mother would give sucker to a child. She's 1 who probably carried this letter. Of Romans to the church in Rome. So she's a wonderful woman, committed You see?

Benefit her, sucker. She's, you know, brilliant. Then you've got Priscilla and Aquila, look, verses 3 and 4. Second on the list. Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ.

They risked their lives for me. Not only I, but all the churches of the gentiles are grateful to them. Everybody's grateful to them. You've only got to be, you know, you may not have met everyone. As you're eating your hog roast or your or your jackfruit, we're we're we're eating together.

We're diverse. Some like jackfruit, some like hog roast. I can't understand why anyone would want that instead of that. I can't understand that. But, well, how diverse?

I'll have a bit of both. But, you know, this is amazing. And there's Priscilla and Aquila, and you've only got to mention, does anybody know that, you know, oh, you're from you're you've just just come to Cornerstone, have you? Where are you from? Yeah, North Northampton.

Oh, yeah. I know someone up there. I know Fred. Oh, yeah, Fred. Yeah.

Fred knows Priscilla and Aquilla. Oh, yes. We know Priscilla and Aquilla. Yeah. We know Priscilla and Aquila.

Everybody knows Priscilla and Aquila. Because there are blessing to the church, fellow workers, laborers, it says, whisking their lives giving them putting their necks on the line for the whole church and for Paul and for the gospel. This is the people on fellowship, Isn't it? Nothing boring about them, is there? Look at verse 6, Mary, very hard work.

Works very hard. Mary, works hard. Look at verse 7, Adronica, son junior. They've been in prison, outstanding apostles. Servants.

Verse 9, Urbaner, he's a fellow worker. I love verse 12. Look at verse 12. Verse 12 is triphina. And trifosa.

They work hard in the lord. Now, TriFina and trifosa, their names mean Guess what their names mean? They're working hard in the lord. They're women. They're working hard in the lord.

Right? So you'd imagine big. Must working hard. Right? Triphena and trifosa means, dainty and delicate.

See how diverse this is. They're dainty and delicate, but I got massive arms. Yeah. Yeah. I can imagine I'm walking in danger, you gotta work here.

Yeah. It's it's marvellous. Try Feina and try phoned. You know, it's like Daisy, isn't it? You've got, what a name Daisy?

It's like a little flower, isn't it daisy? But she works hard in the lord amongst us. I think she's out there working hard now. Is that No. She's not where is she?

Yeah. A lazy thing. But, you know, that name daisy, it's like a little pathetic little flower, I mean, it's lovely name, obviously. But she works hard, and the Lord is lovely to have her on the ship, isn't it? Yeah?

Verse 13, roofer's mother. He's so at home, he he he doesn't call her by her name. It's like, mum, Rufus Mom lovely. That's what happens, isn't it? You become part of the home.

Verse 21, Timothy, co worker. Verse 22, tertius, He's the he's the computer programmer and the editor of this letter. He wrote this letter down. They're all very different and they're all committed a group of people counting the cost or not counting the cost and giving their lives for the gospel for the gospel. Using their gifts, using their different abilities.

This is a committed, devoted crew, Team Rome, crew, Rome, a vibrant dynamic movement going out, wonderful. Third thing, you see here. An affectionate church, this crew love each other. An affectionate church. You come on board fellowship, you come on board the Church of Rome, and it's not just that they're working hard.

They're working hard, they're doing their duty, but they love each other. There's there's an acknowledgement of each other. Paul Paul says, 19 times greet. Greet, great, great, then so it goes on. He knows their names.

He's never even met this church by the way. But he knows their names because he loves them and he's prayed for them. He knows them. He has a deep affection for will you greet this person? Would you greet that person?

And that's what happens in teamwork. When you work together on a team, there's an affection that comes. It's like war war veterans, isn't it? They could have been in a war 50 years ago, but they cry when they remember the blokes they'd served with. 50 years ago, because they they worked together.

I remember the people I worked with at London City Mission, You know, I was not that was years ago. I was 20 when when I was years ago. Most of my life ago. And we worked for 2 years to gather mates. You know, we were roommates in going out and taking the gospel into inner London.

Loads of weird things happen to us. Phenomenal things happen to us. We sometimes nearly died together some of the violence that came. And those mates, do you know what? I hardly ever see them because they're all working for the gospel in different areas.

But I haven't seen them now for for quite some years, but when we do see each other occasionally after years, just like that, We're laughing together, we're crying together, it's hilarious. Anne says, I knew Paul Hinton was in that meeting because there was so much laughter going on. Because because because we're comrades, we fought together only for 2 years. It's like that when you go on any conference. You go on contagious and you get a year's ministry in a week.

Because that's what they get on contagious, a year of preaching in a week and suddenly they love each other and that's why there's all these Marriage is going on from Contagious, welcome to Jerusalem and Rory. Yeah? Suddenly, they're working together, and Rory sees Jerusalem and thinks might as well. And off they go. Because there's an affection to When you fight together, when you're working together, when you're on the fellowship serving together, then there's this love for each other.

You have to put aside things that get on your nerves. If church is just looking at the back of someone's head in a meeting like this, you'll never love them. In fact, you'll hate them. You'll see the dandruff, and they haven't colored their hair quite much. And now you know that girl isn't a natural blonde.

Yeah. Because you can see her roots, and you can see how many gray hairs there are. And there's a wart just under there. If you're just looking at the back of heads, that's what happens. If you're serving together, you don't look like that.

So there's an affection as they work together. But there's also this greeting. Look at verse 16. You can't get around it. English people, Greek 1 another with a holy kiss.

Now, it's holy, so, you know, It's not bloke's lining up for the prettiest girl, you know, try Feena and try pho or whatever, then it means, you know, because they're pretty and dainty. I want a holy kiss from Earth. It's a holy kiss. He says all the churches of Christ send my greetings. So there's there's this really, what it's showing you is that there's an intimacy.

There's an affection yet for each other. An authentic love, greet each other with a holy kiss. Now it's COVID, and we're not allowed to do that sort of stuff. In any way, we're English and find it hard. The JB Phillips translation paraphrase of this verse, he was an Englishman.

It says of verse 16, give 1 another a hearty handshake. That's the that's the British version of doing it. We don't like all this French kissing stuff. We never know what to do. Which side do you go?

Sorry, French. Well, you know what How how they greet each other? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Yeah. Yeah. It's holy kiss. Sorry. Certainly.

It's not a French kiss, but the way the French greet themselves is. What if, you know, you go to go, we're awkward and they come at your face like this and you think, oh, gosh. And and then it's like this and then how many times? What? How many times is it?

Twice. Yeah. Which 1 first? Right side first. This side, to your side.

Yeah. Okay. It's not like that. Yeah. Anyway, There's different cultural expressions, but there's affection.

There's love for each other. Wonderful affection. Here, last thing, it's a discerning church. And it 1 senses, sort of leaves us slight bad flavor in the mouth in 1 sense because why does he end with this? Well, nearly end.

So it isn't the last thing. This is the last but 1. Is a discerning church. So he's nearly ended with this. For 17 to 20, I urge you brothers and sisters to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teachings that you have learned.

Keep away from them, so you are to greet everyone with a holy kiss, but not these people, Yeah? For such people do not are not serving our lord Jesus Christ, but their own appetites, By smooth talk and flattery, they deceive the minds of the naive people. Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you, but I want you to be wise about what is good and innocent about what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush satan under your feet, grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you. So he's saying, I want you to be a discerning crew on this fellowship.

And what is interesting is throughout this whole book, you'll notice this. This is the only time he mentions Satan in that massive book of of Paul. It's the only time. And he's saying beware of the trickery of Satan who will disunite you. There's sometimes very clever flattery they're used to disunite the church.

And he says, actually, you need to be really careful of anyone that is disuniting the church. In fact, he says, he's just said greet them with a holy kiss, but not these people. Stay away from them. Be careful. They put obstacles in the way.

It's like those those mines that that used to float in the water, you know, to blow ships up. These there's false teaching going on, he says in verse 18. Smooth talk, flattery, be careful, deceit. And it works like this in a church. You know, it's like, Do you know you and me understand each other, but I don't don't really think they do.

It's it's sort of flattery brings you in. That's what flattery does. Be careful. Yeah? These people are not serving Christ.

They serve their own appetites. Now this isn't people that can't serve because they're broken and they're hurt, and we need to minister to them and they're in hospital. You know the difference. These people are all about them. When you hear them argue, when you hear them discuss your notice that that that is all about them and how they've been let down or whatever it is.

Be very careful of these people. He says. Keep away from them. You need wisdom not to be naive, he says in verse 9. Be wise in this.

Be wise in this. Understand that Satan wants to get onto the fellowship. There are rats on board, and they nibble away, They'll eat the food and bring nothing to the table. You know? Be careful.

There's rats on board, he's saying. It's a strange thing, isn't it? But but that's part of what we got to do. Brothers and sisters, if we're to go out and we're to rescue people. We don't want people nibbling away at the ropes and eating the food and just leaving their droppings everywhere.

Yeah? Fifth thing, last thing, nearly done. It's a missionary church of well, of course it is. It's going out onto the waves to reach people. It's a missionary church.

Look at verses 25 to 27. Now, to him who is able to establish you In accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages passed, but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by command of the eternal God. So that So in other words, the gospel has been made, no, we know it, we're a fellowship of the gospel, so that all the gentiles might come to the obedience that comes from faith. In other words, they become Christians. Do the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ, I'm in?

Paul's letter begins exactly the same way and he wraps it up the same way. The fellowship is to go out into God's world with God's message to all types of people. We're going, he says, be committed to that, that we may reach people. So this little fellowship, joining up with other ships, What you call them? Is it a fratellar of ships?

We've got a fratellar of ships, you know, in this area, Christchurch Herberton, Emmanuel, Tolworth, Grace Church, New Mord and Us. You know, Chestington evangelical Church, Hook evangelical church, we're sailing it for tiller. Yeah? Going to reach out. Every single person gets a leaflet Yeah?

At least we're doing that, chucking it out of the boat. Yeah? Trying to rescue people. It's exciting, isn't it? So that, I hope, will inspire us this week to pray for each other.

To pray these things, to listen to the word of God, to be excited about being in fellowship together as we meet together. And pray that the Lord would use us in this way. All of us, whoever we are, whatever nationality, It's fantastic, isn't it? To be part of this fellowship? Is it not?

Is there anything really like it? You know? We split into too many little groups, but here, the church all over. Yeah? So a diverse church is wonderful, a dedicated church, wonderful, an affectionate church for each other, knowing about each other, loving each other, a discerning church and a missionary church, you using its gifts.

To reach the lost. Father God, help us this week. Please speak to us, encourage us. Firm us in this, give us strength in this, help us to be perhaps even a little stronger as a crew member as we live and love on this fellowship we pray in Jesus' name, amen.

Preached by Pete Woodcock
Pete Woodcock photo

Pete is Senior Pastor of Cornerstone and lives in Chessington with his wife Anne who helps oversee the women’s ministry in the church.

Contact us if you have any questions.

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