What does it mean to be on common ground?
The sports field is a common ground for both players and spectators.
City Councils sometimes set aside parcels of land for the community to grow vegies for personal use. These blocks are called allotments. The allotments are a common ground for people with like minds to gather and grow flowers or vegetables, make friends and swap information about gardening. Friendships flourish when people have a common ground whereby they can communicate.
Marriages flourish and last when the couple have a common ground to meet both physically and mentally.
FELLOWSHIP OR COMMON GROUND
So when we become Christians, we find we have a common ground with so many diverse people world-wide. There is a fellowship, a unity, a common bond; in church terminology, it is called Fellowship. A further meaning of Fellowship is common ground. The word 'fellowship' is a significant word in the New Testament. So let’s explore the thought of fellowship or common ground.
In Acts 2: 42, 'They devoted themselves to the Apostles teaching and the Fellowship, to the breaking of bread… Fellowship as practised in this verse was important. When we examine the meaning of the word fellowship it carries a meaning of common ground. What did the apostles teach that was so important? Jesus was the one who drew the apostles and believers together. He was the one who bound them together. Jesus was the common ground who drew the apostles and believers together. Jesus had died but he had also risen from the grave. He was alive in their hearts and he drew them together in a special bond, a fellowship or common ground.
The basis of Christian Fellowship is the person Jesus. He is the common ground that unites all believers into a community or fellowship. Worldwide that fellowship is known as the Church. It is Jesus though, who is the common ground.
A new connection with God opens when we apply 'fellowship' or 'common ground' to a relationship with God. We ask the question: what do God and I have in common? Jesus, God’s son is the common ground. He stands between God and us. In order for us to relate to God, the Father, we needed to be holy and righteous but in our present state we are neither. It was Jesus who made us right with his Father. We need to accept what he did for us, accept his goodness as a replacement of our less than perfect goodness. When we accept Jesus goodness by faith, the father can look on us and relate to us in the same way as He relates to Jesus His son. He took our rejection of God upon himself; he wiped out all our transgressions and love of independence at his death.
Our acceptance of Jesus sacrifice opens the door to a living, breathing, sharing, loving bond with God. By Jesus death, we have been lifted out of ourselves and our darkness and placed on common ground with God Ephesians 2: 6. 'we are seated with Christ in heavenly places.'
A NEW LEVEL
Our relationship with God reaches a new intimacy. Faith in Jesus is the common ground on which God can accept us and meet with us or fellowship with us. It possible to enjoy an intimacy with the Father as never before. Because now Jesus indwells us, we are new people, we have been made new. Once he is alive in our hearts, he never leaves. Nothing can make Jesus leave.
God has made us his children, we are now equal with Christ, his Son. As equals of Christ, we inherit and share the prized position that Jesus has with the Father in heaven. God shares himself with us the same as he does with Jesus. By faith in Jesus, a relationship like that of sons and daughters of God is born. Such common ground means we can ask anything in Jesus name, and it will happen. John 14: 13. 'I will do whatsoever you ask in my name to glorify the Father.'
The fellowship or the common ground or the close bond that the Apostles and believers enjoyed is Jesus himself indwelling them and in us at the moment we accept Jesus into our life. Jesus is the common ground that church is built on, that bind believers world-wide together. It is a bond, fellowship, common ground that nothing can break.