Community: Living with One Another

Tuesday evening, April 3rd, we began a bible study video series called, “Find Your People” by Jennie Allen. The study is about making friends and community. Through it Jennie gives us biblical principles and tips on doing just this.

We began this series for a few reasons.

Loneliness is a major epidemic.

We were created by God for community.

Our heart with Innovate Church is to be a place of belonging, to create and be community together for those that feel they have no one, no community, no one that cares about them. The forgotten ones of the world.

So, along with this series, I wanted to look at what you may have heard as, “The One Another’s” of the Bible.

These are all the true relationship teachings of the Scriptures that help point us to being good friends, good family members, good community, and even good citizens of this world.

Being in community together, means doing these one another’s well.

Relationships with One Another

The word generally translated as “one another” is used 100 times in the New Testament.

47 of them are direct instructions to followers of Jesus.

Paul wrote 60% of them.

Relationships are hard for many of us. To be in a positive relationship with anyone means give and take. It means showing grace and love, and at times forgiving one another. If you can’t forgive someone then the relationship breaks down.

We must accept that we are all sinners and are going to hurt and be hurt, mostly unintentionally, and that we need to make sure we show each other grace and forgiveness when this happens.

If we want to find good relationships and great community:

WE have to be willing to make the first move! We go first!

That goes right along with Jesus’s command to do to others as we would have them do to us. You treat people how you want to be treated…it is an active command not reactive. 

So with that let us look at “the one anothers”…

The most well known is that we should love one another. In fact the command to love one another is found 16 times in the New Testament.

1 John 4:7,12 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.

In Jesus’s commandment for us to love one another as He has loved us He says…

John 13:35By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.

Jesus’s most well known trait was that He was loving. He was gentle and kind. As saved people we know He is forgiving.

Paul says..

Galatians 5:13 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

If the One we follow is known this way, then we who claim to follow Him should have the same reputation. 

Loving people is hard. Even in our nuclear families, you may have some who you have to choose to love right? When you throw together those family reunions, or maybe even the “church” gatherings, and introduce all kinds of different opinions and beliefs, how much harder is it to love each other then? 

As Jesus set the example of love, so are we to do as His followers.

The One Another’s

So let’s look at most of the One Another’s of the New Testament below beginning with what I call…

Relationship Builders

Love one another (John 13:34 – This command occurs at least 16 times)

 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 

Relationship Builders

Be devoted to one another (Romans 12:10) 

Love one another with brotherly affection. 

Honor one another above yourselves (Romans 12:10)

Outdo one another in showing honor.

Live in harmony with one another (Romans 12:16) 

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.

Build up one another (Romans 14:19; 1 Thessalonians 5:11) 

So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

Be likeminded towards one another (Romans 15:5) 

May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, 6 that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Accept one another (Romans 15:7) 

Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.

Admonish one another (Romans 15:14; Colossians 3:16) 

I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

Greet one another (Romans 16:16) 

Greet one another with a holy kiss

Care for one another (1 Corinthians 12:25) 

that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.

Serve one another (Galatians 5:13) 

For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

Bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2) 

Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Forgive one another (Ephesians 4:2, 32; Colossians 3:13) 

Be patient with one another (Ephesians 4:2; Colossians 3:13) 

I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 3 eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 

Speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15, 25) 

Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ,

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

Be kind and compassionate to one another (Ephesians 4:32) 

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19) 

be filled with the Spirit, 19 addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart,

Submit to one another (Ephesians 5:21) 

submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Clothe yourselves with humility towards one another (1 Peter 5:5) 

Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Consider others better than yourselves (Philippians 2:3) 

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.

Look to the interests of one another (Philippians 2:4) 

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.

Comfort one another (1 Thessalonians 4:18) 

Therefore encourage one another with these words.

Encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11) 

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

Exhort one another (Hebrews 3:13) 

But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

Stir up [provoke, stimulate] one another to love and good works (Hebrews 10:24) 

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

Show hospitality to one another (1 Peter 4:9) 

Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.

Employ the gifts that God has given us for the benefit of one another (1 Peter 4:10) 

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:

Pray for one another (James 5:16) 

Confess your faults to one another (James 5:16)

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. 

Be at peace with one another. (Mark 9:50)

be at peace with one another.

Wash one another’s feet (John 13:14)

you also ought to wash one another’s feet

Relationship Killers

Do not lie to one another (Colossians 3:9) 

Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices

Stop passing judgment on one another (Romans 14:13) 

Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.

If you keep on biting and devouring each other…you’ll be destroyed by each other (Galatians 5:15) 

But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.

Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other (Galatians 5:26) 

Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Do not slander one another (James 4:11) 

Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.

Don’t grumble against each other (James 5:9) (John 6:43)

Do not grumble among yourselves.

Community

We do all this because we are in a real sense “members of one another” (Romans 12:5; Ephesians 4:25)

so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

Listen to this from Jennie’s book. The idea here is living on purpose, making friends, making community on purpose.

“Why do we expect close friends to somehow appear in our busy lives? We think acquaintances should just magically produce our few best friends. Then our relational needs will be met. Back in the day, people found friends from their larger village of interconnected people. Think village life, small-town life, or agrarian life, or tribes.

People’s needs were met because of the way they lived: close. But because we see community as an accessory, not the essential fabric of life as our ancestors did by default, we are lonely. We are looking to plug a gaping hole. The hole is larger than a couple people could ever fill, and so we live constantly disappointed, and we further isolate ourselves. It’s time to break that cycle – on purpose.”

One of the best examples of community, with this village mentality Jennie mentions, is found in Acts 2. This describes the very beginning of the Church…the people not a building. A Community of believers living out the teachings of Jesus.

Acts 2:42-47

And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

This is community. 

If you’re like me you read this and begin throwing up the “yeah buts.”

“Yeah, but…I’m not sharing my ________________.”

“Yeah, but…I’m not selling my ________________.”

And this idea that “day by day” they came together.

It’s all a bit extreme right? But isn’t that what it would be like to live in a village together? A small place, where everyone knows everyone, and makes sure no one is without.

This, in my opinion, is Christian love for one another. The love Christ calls us to have for one another. He gave His all for us, and says we should be willing to do the same. But you and I aren’t being called to go to the Cross as He did. But we, myself included, won’t even give up the time it take to pick up the phone and call someone to check on them.

Most of us live busy lives. And I know that when I come home from work, I’m ready to relax, not deal with people. And that’s completely understandable for us all. But let us pray that we don’t get so involved in our own lives that we forget to invite others into our lives, and or involve ourselves in our neighbor’s lives. Everyone needs to know someone loves them…and not just family members.

The Kingdom is here and now, but it takes us bringing it into practice everyday. Purposely living it out, in community, together…digitally and physically.

If this content sounds like something you need, or if you are seeking a community to join online, please look us up at Innovate Church. There we have all the links and information on how you can join in community with us.

Books mentioned above are affiliate links to Amazon.

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