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For some time I've been thinking about trying to develop a series of articles about Fellowship.  To start with I'll write out what have I experienced in the past that has really touched me, times when I've experienced true Fellowship. Then I'll research and found out what are other people doing to encourage fellowship.

(millie talking about the "Connections" group, ask her more details, ask for the leadership name)

Ideas For Fellowship


this article is in the beginning phases

Friendship with the world is enmity with God


People who are truly trying to change their life remove themselves from people and friends that draw them astray. If you are trying to hang onto friends ... then are you truly trying to change.


A true friend will tell people the truth.

Not even Jesus tried to be a friend with everyone.

There is a difference of being a friend to people who want to change versus trying to be a friend to people who will try to draw you into their lifestyle.


What does it mean to be a friend?

Are we supposed to be friends with everyone?

What was Jesus' example. Did he try to be friends with everyone?

there is a difference between being friendly and being a friend.

"Bill Gothard, in his Institute in Basic Youth Conflicts, has identified four "Levels of Friendship". They are (1) acquaintance, (2) casual friend, (3) close friend, and (4) intimate friend.1"

here is another

Gisele Nelson identifies her levels of friendships as "shared experiences", "shared ideas", "shared souls"2 She goes on to say that "Sometimes I think there’s a gaping hole between ideas and souls."


Aristotle had other ideas about friendship

"Aristotle divides friendships into three types, based on the motive for forming them: friendships of utility, friendships of pleasure and friendships of the good.
Friendships of utility are relationships formed without regard to the other person at all. Buying merchandise, for example, may require meeting another person but usually needs only a very shallow relationship between the buyer and seller. In modern English, people in such a relationship would not even be called friends, but acquaintances (if they even remembered each other afterwards). The only reason these people are communicating is in order to buy or sell things, which is not a bad thing, but as soon as that motivation is gone, so goes the relationship between the two people unless another motivation is found. Complaints and quarrels generally only arise in this type of friendship.
At the next level, friendships of pleasure are based on pure delight in the company of other people. People who drink together or share a hobby may have such friendships. However, these friends may also part—in this case if they no longer enjoy the shared activity, or can no longer participate in it together.
Friendships of the good are ones where both friends enjoy each other's characters. As long as both friends keep similar characters, the relationship will endure since the motive behind it is care for the friend. This is the highest level of philia, and in modern English might be called true friendship.
"Now it is possible for bad people as well [as good] to be friends to each other for pleasure or utility, for decent people to be friends to base people, and for someone with neither character to be a friend to someone with any character. Clearly, however, only good people can be friends to each other because of the other person himself; for bad people find no enjoyment in one another if they get no benefit." (1157a18–21)
Not all bonds of philia involves reciprocity Aristotle notes. Some examples of these might include love of father to son, elder to younger or ruler to subject. Generally though, the bonds of philia are symmetrical."3

Ideas for Small Groups

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As my wife and I are discussing  the idea of starting to meet with another couple for fellowship, I thought that I'd start putting some ideas together here for why we are meeting and what we could do when we could meet together.

In the past, I've been a part of many "Bible studies" that mainly focused on "studying the Bible". I'm burned out with that whole concept. I believe that the focus is wrong. The purpose of a small group should not be to study a book, any book. Instead, the purpose should be to help one another live out the life. The book can be a help, but it shou.d not be a focus. For example. Think about when we all started to learn how to drive a car. One of the important things we did was to study the driver's manual. The purpose of studying the book was to learn the laws and rules of the road about driving. Connect that with some practice and then we were ready to take out our driving test. Assuming that we passed the test. Then we drive out car according to the rules and laws that we learned from the driving manual. Nows hes the corelation; After receiving your driver's license keep studying and memoriing your driver's manual for the rest of your life? Hopefully you continue to drive according to what you learned from the book, but you do not contiually refer back to it. In stead you just drive your car. You get better at driving your car the longer you drive. However drivers can get together to motivate each other become better drivers. This sometimes happens when drivers disregard the rules of the road by driving drunk or speeding or driving recklessly.


This brings us to the purpose of getting together. "All men will know you are disciples by your love for one another." John 13:35   "And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds." Hebrews 10:24

Love is our primary command. How can we show the love of God to others if we don't know how to love one another. In all the Bible studies and religious meetings that I have went to ove rthe years, this is the missing focus.  Now, how do we love one another? Love has to be learned, just like driving a car. We must learn the basics and then we need to put it into practice.

When we realize that our purose is not to study a particular book, but to to learn and put into practice how to truly love and to live a godly life, then we are set free to use whatever methods or materials that would be helpful. This would include finding or leaning about godly men and women to use as examples.

My Experience of Fellowship

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As I was typing in the title for this page, I accidentally typed "My Experience of Followship". As I corrected the title, I suddenly realized that for people to have true fellowship, they must all be followers of a similar values, goal, idea, god, etc. So, followship is a part of true fellowship.

I was raised in, and have spend my life in what is called "Christianity". I was raised by parents who considered themselves to be Christians. I've spent the majority of my 60 years going to various "Christian" churches. I've went to countless Bible studies. I've spent many years listening to "Christian" radio. Throughout all of this I've have very little of what I'd call true fellowship. But I have had some, and that is what this article will focus on.