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Greetings

Greetings in the Name of Jesus!

It is with joy that I announce that this week The Cyber Church of Milwaukee celebrates it's first Anniversary. It was mid February of 1995, that I first opened the doors of CCM to the Net. Our congregation has grown to over seventy and our web-Page has been visited by hundreds of people each month. I want to thank you all for your prayers and support that has helped this ministry to continue.

This week I would like to take a break from our study of the Gospel of Mark. In it's place I am presenting the outline of the sermon I preached at my home congregation North Town Church this last Sunday.

It has always been my strong conviction that committed, active membership in a local congregation is absolutely required for a Christian to live an obedient and fruitful life. The purpose of CCM is to provide additional resources to enhance the believers devotional life within the circle of the local congregation and not to be a substitute for it.

In my sermon, I wanted to focus on the benefits of living a "shared Life." The term fellowship is used in Scripture to express this concept of being a part of the Church Body. It is my prayer that each of you be actively involved with a body of Christians who meet regularly to pray, worship, fellowship, and join together to do good works for the glory of God.

Welcome to Our Newest Members

Our Prayer

Father, the world calls us so sweetly away from one another, help us to be devoted to your Church in Godly love..........

In Jesus' Name
Amen

This Week's Song

BIND US TOGETHER

REFRAIN

Bind us together, Lord, Bind us together
With cords that cannot be broken,
Bind us together, Lord
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with love.

1.

There is only one God,
There is only one King
There is only one Body.
That is why I sing;

REFRAIN

Bind us together, Lord, Bind us together
With cords that cannot be broken,
Bind us together, Lord
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with love.

2.

You are the family of God,
You are the promise divine
You are God's chosen design,
You are the glorious new wine;

REFRAIN

Bind us together, Lord, Bind us together
With cords that cannot be broken,
Bind us together, Lord
Bind us together, Lord,
Bind us together with love.

Copyright 1977 Thank You Music
By: Bob Gillman

Today's Devotional

1Tim 5:8, shows us that our responsibility to care for our family's needs takes precedence over our obligations at Church. Many secular activities are noble and worthy of our time, however I think that it is our tendency to neglect our relationship with God's people and His Church, to pursue our personal lives in the world.

God has made us to be creatures of habit. Most habits are formed unintentionally. There are good habits and bad habits, but one thing is sure, once a habit is formed it is very difficult to break. Some are in the habit of going to Church only because it's their duty. They are last in the door before services and first out when it's over. Others show up at every activity the Church offers, they are so stretched out and worn out that they are exhausted.

Somewhere in between these two extremes lies a healthy fruitful "shared life" where intimate relationships develop both with God and others, and spiritual growth naturally takes place.

The following collection of Scriptures presents the benefits of living a "shared life," I hope they will benefit you as you consider your fellowship habits. I want to encourage you to prayerfully and purposely develop a "shared life" that will be a source of blessing both to you and all those around you.

Ecclesiastes 4

9. Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:

10. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no-one to help him up!

11. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone?

12. Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

When you are alone there is no one to come to your aid when you need help, but when you live a shared life, your brothers and sisters in Christ will be there for you when you need them.

Proverbs 27

17. As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

The natural man is lazy, mediocre, and self centered. Even when he seeks the truth, he can only see it from one side. With the help of his brothers and sisters in Christ, the Christian can sharpen his understanding of God's word, and making use of the experience and wisdom of others he can test his thoughts and clarify his ideas.

Proverbs 15

22. Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.

When you face problems or must make plans for the future all by yourself, the best you can do is seek help from strangers who will charge you a fee for their services. But by living a shared life in Christ, you can seek the counsel of brothers and sisters who love you, and who care about your future. Their experience and knowledge are rich resources that the Lord has made available to those who are in the body.

Matthew 18

19. "Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.

20. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."

There is no substitute for a deep personal prayer life, however the Lord has a special promise for those who share their prayer requests in public prayer. If you never participate in open prayer you will never experience God's blessing.

Romans 12

13. Share with God's people who are in need. Practise hospitality.

If you are not in fellowship, no one will know that you have needs that they could help with, and Christian hospitality is one of the sweetest blessings for both the host and the guest.

1 Thessalonians 5

11. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

If you are alone in the world, "kill or be killed"- the law of the jungle, governs our relationships. Yes, it is possible to have friends who love you (as long as you love them), but beyond that "watch your back." If you are a Christian living a shared life, you have brothers and sisters who are commanded to love you even if you make mistakes. "Love (even) your enemy," Christians is committed to strengthen one another. Where in the world can you find anything like this?

2 Corinthians 6

14. Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

15. What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever?

16. What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? for we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."

17. "Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you."

18. "I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty."

2 Corinthians 7

1. Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.

The best way for a Christian to walk the paths of life is with other Christians. The unbeliever, no matter how friendly and sincere is walking on a different road and traveling to a different destination. Christians share the same road and the same destination, how natural to travel that road together. In addition there are many we will meet who have already walked where we are walking now, they know where all the pot holes are and can help us avoid getting lost and side tracked.

Romans 12

10. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honour one another above yourselves.

Unless you live a shared life, you will never know Godly Love, Devotion, and Honour. It just doesn't exist outside the Church.

Ephesians 4

11. It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers,

12. to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up

13. until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fulness of Christ.

God's ordained ministries in the Church are community centered. They develop the Body and it's members. If you are not a "connected" member of the body you will not benefit from these ministrys, but like an amputated hand, you will not be nourished by the body and you will wither and die, also, the body will suffer from your absence.

1 Corinthians 5

4. When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present,.............

Paul declares, when the Church assembles in the Name of Jesus, His power is present in a special way that it is not when believers are alone.

Hebrews 3

13. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.

Hebrews 10

24. And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds. 25. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

It takes just one day to be hardened by sin's deceitfulness. Alone we are at the mercy of the evil one, but by living a shared life, we are in continual contact with the body and by prayer and fellowship we are rescued in our hour of need.

Are you living a "Shared Life"? If you aren't, I hope you will consider the benefits you are missing out on and determine to get into the habit of fellowship.

In Christ

Greg Spencer

gspencer@execpc.com

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