Why Participate in a Community Group?
The Bible teaches us that followers of Christ are to be united (1 Corinthians 1:10, Ephesians 4:13). Through Community Groups, we have a unique opportunity to magnify the glory of God while living in unity with other believers. The benefits of Christian unity are many. Below are nine reasons that committing to a group can produce spiritual fruit in your life.
1) Promote unity within the church through gospel-centered relationships
Participating in a Community Group will help us to bridge generational gaps within the church by uniting all ages around the gospel. We tend to only gravitate towards those who are like us. The gospel compels us to overcome this sinful tendency, and Community Groups provide a context for this to take place.
2) Provide a context to fulfill the “one another” commands
The Bible gives many commands regarding the way we interact with one another. We are told to pray for one another, love one another, confess our sins to one another, serve one another, bear one another’s burdens, encourage one another (Galatians 5:13, Ephesians 4:32, Romans 12:10, James 5:16). If we only see believers for an hour on Sunday morning, it makes it very difficult to obey these important commands.
3) Provide accountability in all aspects of the Christian life
Who of us doesn’t need accountability in living the Christian life? Accountability in areas such as Bible reading, prayer, personal evangelism, and discipleship is vital for spiritual growth. Community Groups help to meet this important need.
4) Provide a context for sanctification and discipleship
According to Scripture, sanctification is a community project. Virtually every command in the New Testament is directed not at one individual, but to a group of Christians. We need others to help us grow in personal holiness.
5) Make the most of Sunday’s sermon
Community Groups provide a context to discuss and digest the message delivered on Sunday morning. This equips us not only to retain the information, but to better apply it to one another and ourselves. Thus, Community Groups can help sharpen our doctrine and theology in the same way that “iron sharpens iron”.
6) Expose the deceptiveness of sin
Sin is not only damning, it’s deceptive. It has a blinding affect on us, which makes it difficult to detect on our own. We need trusted Christians who can graciously expose our sin as we pursue Christ-likeness together.
7) Protect against the tactics of Satan
Satan is always at work, seeking to harm Christians who are isolated from the Christian community. One of our best defenses against his wiles is to live in community with other believers who will help guard our soul and protect us from being one of Satan’s casualties.
8) Fight against the lure of the world
We need brothers and sisters who can remind us to “not love the world or the things in the world…[because] the world is passing away along with its desires…” (1 John 2:15-17). The ways of this world can seem attractive and alluring. We need other Christians to remind us that we are citizens of another Kingdom.
9) Spur one another on in evangelism
Let’s be honest, evangelism is intimidating. And unfortunately, fear prevents many Christians from obeying God’s command to share the good news. Belonging to a Community Group can help us overcome this fear as we strive to fulfill the great commission together.
It’s evident from this list that Community Groups provide an excellent opportunity to showcase the gospel in our lives. Each of these benefits work together to display the glory of God while building each of us up in the faith. If you are not currently participating in a Community Group, would you consider it in light of these numerous benefits? Or better yet, ask a current participant how their group has benefitted them personally.