Roberts Liardon shows us that there is a strong movement today toward church unity. Part of that movement is of God, but part of it is not. What are the grounds for Christian fellowship? What is true Christian fellowship?
I see three ingredients that are necessary for true fellowship those in agreement must respect one another, they must believe the same things, they must have the same desires for the kingdom.
Roberts Liardon tells us that if you do not respect someone else, you cannot really fellowship with him. Without equal respect for one another’s integrity and spiritual strength, imbalance results. Also, you do not have true fellowship unless both parties believe the same things. Otherwise, it will be a false unity, and conﬂict will result sooner or later.
True Christian fellowship means you have the same desires for the kingdom. Some people do not concern themselves with furthering God’s kingdom on earth at all. Some want to establish their own little kingdoms. They may say they minister for God’s kingdom, but they really do not. Therefore, if you sincerely want to work for God, how can you unite with someone trying to build his kingdom at the expense of God’s? You cannot. The “unity” would not work It would be false.
There are those who say, “Yes, but we can fellowship together without agreeing on everything. We just will not talk about those things we do not agree on.”
Have you ever tried that? Eventually the differences create a conﬂict. The Word says, “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3). You can pretend to agree with someone, but if you really do not, your disagreements talked about or not will affect your fellowship. For true Christian unity, these three things must be present in a relationship.
Christians certainly cannot have fellowship with those who are not part of God’s family. “W hat fellowship has light with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14 NASB). Your light will grow dim the longer you fellowship with those in darkness. There is no way you can have real fellowship with people who are not walking in light.