The Fellowship of His Sufferings

Paul prayed in his letter to the Philippian church:

Philippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection,
and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his

In Paul's prayer we see a dual confession.

Paul prayed to know BOTH:

- the power of His resurrection


- the fellowship of His sufferings.

These two go hand in hand. To embrace one TRUTH and leave the other
"unembraced" means certain failure.

The word "fellowship" is the greek word [2842] koinonia and means
fellowship, association, community, communion, joint participation,
INTERCOURSE. It was a direct act of PARTAKING of the same CUP that Jesus
had to partake of.

To understand this prayer requires us to KNOW what the sufferings of
Christ were. To understand His sufferings is to begin to understand TRUE
FELLOWSHIP with Jesus.

Isaiah 53:2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a
root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we
shall see him, [there is] no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted
with grief: and we hid as it were [our] faces from him; he was despised,
and we esteemed him not.
4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did
esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our
iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his
stripes we are healed.

>From this passage in Isaiah we see that Jesus was:

- plain (in the physical realm)
- despised
- rejected
- man of sorrows
- aquainted with grief
- wounded
- bruised
- chastised

So when we pray "Lord, I want to know You" in effect we are saying that
we want to "partake" of who He is. The catch here is that we must
partake of the "fulness" of Christ. The bible is filled with "dual"
truths, paradoxes. He is BOTH the REIGNING KING and the SUFFERING

Jesus did many mighty miracles as He healed the sick, raised the dead,
opened the blind eyes, fed the multitudes, healed the lame, healed
lepers. By association when we pray the "Lord, I want to know You"
prayer, we immediately think of all of these glorious works. And Jesus
has promised that His DISCIPLES will do even GREATER works than these.
What a glorious promise.

Yet, there is a REQUIREMENT that comes with every promise. That
requirement is FELLOWSHIP. It is the COST of intimacy with Jesus.

Jesus taught:

Luke 14:26-28, 33 If any [man] come to me, and hate not his father, and
mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his
own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his
cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. For which of you,
intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the
cost, whether he have [sufficient] to finish [it]?....So likewise,
whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be
my disciple.

The truth was that Paul could not know the POWER OF HIS RESURRECTION

Jesus showed His mercy, compassion, and GOODNESS to the multitudes as He
healed them, bound their wounds, and fed them. Once Jesus showed His
goodness, He then called them to discipleship.

John 6:53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you,
Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have
no life in you.

The call was to PARTAKE. If you never ate food you would die. If we do
not partake of the "spiritual bread" we likewise will CUT OFF OURSELVES
and die. The life is in PARTAKING of the body and blood of Christ. The
dividing line in the kingdom of God is FELLOWSHIP. This is true love.
True friends of Christ embrace ALL of Him.

What happened? Only the TRUE WORSHIPPERS remained.

John 6:66 From that [time] many of his disciples went back, and walked
no more with him.

The Lord answers are sincere prayers. When we pray sincere prayers,
Jesus gives us what we need, not necessarily what we want. The part of
our walk with Jesus that is most difficult is the last part of Paul's

Philippians 3:10b "being made conformable unto his death"

We pray to be like Him then Jesus honor's that prayer by bringing
CIRCUMSTANCES into our life to make us conformable to His death. Those
circumstanes are the FELLOWSHIP OF HIS SUFFERINGS. Why do we need to
conform to His death? Because we cannot partake of His resurrection life
until we die.

John 12:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall
into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth
forth much fruit.

As the Lord brings rejection, grief, sorrow, woundings, and chastisement
into our lives we need to consider that it is not the devil bothering us
but rather the Lord answering our sincere prayer to "fellowship" with
Him. As we embrace His sufferings and embrace His cross, being made
conformable to His death we will then be worthy servants to partake in
His resurrection life.
If we truly understand what koinonia fellowship with Jesus is and we
embrace this type of fellowship with Him then we will begin to gain a
more realistic understanding of the biblical KOINONIA that the Lord
desires us to have with our fellow bretheran.

Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and
fellowship <2842>, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

So this type of fellowship that comes with a pentacost type of anointing
will COST. Many desire it, many can taste it, but it is the cost that
keeps us from crossing over "Jordan". It is the same cost that keeps us
from the depth of fellowship that Jesus intended us as His disciples to
have with Him.

Those who are willing to pay that cost and first and formost FELLOWSHIP
with Jesus on this level will be truly prepared to FELLOWSHIP with the
bretheran as God intended.

Jesus prayed:

John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, [art] in me, and I
in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe
that thou hast sent me.

The TRUE WORSHIPPER that embraces Jesus and is made conformable to His
death will also embrace His brother with the same self sacraficial

We will enter into that "koinonia" with the bretheran to the degree that
we enter into that "koinonia" with Jesus. There is simply no way around

Some "to the point" thoughts to chew on as the Lord is rapidly moving us
towards this type of fellowship.