Monday, October 10, 2011

The Fraternity of Faith

By Allen White

Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet as a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever welcomes a righteous person as a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward. Matthew 10:40-42

Have you noticed an affinity among certain groups of people? How do smokers know each other even when they’re not smoking? I’ve sat with smokers, who had not lit up, someone would walk up to the table and ask the smoker for a cigarette. The fellow smoker didn’t even consider me. How did they know?

I have a friend who wears very long hair for a man, in my opinion. I was out with him and his wife one day. As we passed another long haired man, they gave each other a knowing nod. I asked if they knew each other. His wife to me, “It’s a long hair thing.” There was a kinship, a fraternity. They had to band together to avoid the scissors of our culture. They were brothers who looked a little like sisters in my book.

Christ-followers have a fraternity of their own. We’re all in this together. Have you ever looked at someone and just knew they were a Christian? Not because they were carrying a Bible or scowling in a judgmental way, but there was just something about them.

Jesus said if people accept believers, they also accept Him. And, if they accept Jesus, they also accept the Father. How do they do this?

Jesus wasn’t just speaking of those who proclaim the message of the Gospel, but those who supported it. If someone helped a messenger of God’s Word, it was as good as if that person were the messenger himself. If you helped a prophet or a righteous person, you are entitled to the same reward they will receive. Even helping another believer with something as simple as a cup of water was worthy of a full reward.

If you have public ministry gifts like speaking, singing, writing or leading, how have you enlisted the help of others? How can they share the load and share in the reward?

If you have less public gifts like intercession, helps, serving or mercy, how can you support those with more public gifts? Your work might not be obvious, but everyone’s work together is powerful.

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