Community As A Means of Grace

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The Word, prayer and the sacraments. The Word - preached or read. Prayer -  individual or corporate. Baptism and communion - both symbols and reminders of the gospel. These are the means of grace. These are the means by which God’s grace is experienced, displayed, deepened, and grown in the hearts and minds of believers. 

When we righty engage these means, we are able to experience a vibrant relationship with God. When we wander away from them, we weaken our faith and are likely to drift from the God we claim to love and serve. How do we maximize the former and avoid long droughts in the latter? One of the most biblical ways is to experience these means within the context of community.

Our desire should be to serve and bless others with what they are learning. With prayer, both public and private, believers have the opportunity to serve one another by pointing others to God while lifting each other up. It’s also in the context corporate worship that both baptism and communion take place. It’s these means that point believers not only to the sacrifice of Christ on their behalf, but also to his resurrection. We need these to be reminded of our own need but also as occasions to celebrate what God is doing in the lives of our church family. 

While community isn’t a means of grace in and of itself, it is where the means are are employed for the benefit of all involved. It’s in the context of community where we display our faithfulness to the command to love one another (Galatians 5:13, Hebrews 10:24, 1 John 3:11, 1 John 3:23).

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