That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. (1 Jn. 1:3)
Fellowship is intangible at best. It begins with a personal and intimate relationship with our Father and His son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and permeates every aspect of our lives. The question is, how do you explain this relationship to others? The very concept of fellowship is wrapped up in the spiritual. It is a relationship where words do not support our need to communicate. If I could state it another way, it is fourth dimensional. The three dimensions of time, space and matter are included in fellowship, but at the same time are eclipsed by it.
May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height, (Ephesians 3:18) Breadth, length and height are words we use when describing things and places. We all comprehend these words. These are the very words we use to convey our understanding of this world. There is a fourth term used in the same verse, and that is depth. This word can be used by itself to describe a distance, ie; the water has a depth of twenty feet, but can not be used to describe the dimensions of an object or place. Depth usually usurps the meaning of the other three words: breath, length or height. The question arises, why is the word used in the context of this verse? It seems to be redundant, but is exactly what the Father desired to say. He was not trying to confuse us, but was describing His world to us in our finite language.
When the word depth is used in conjunction with one or all of the other three words, our thinking must change. This is the very word used by the Father to translate our thinking from the third dimension to the fourth dimension. And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. (Ephesians 3:19) Depth is the word that allows our thinking to pass temporal third dimensional knowledge and transition into the fourth dimension so that we may know the love of Christ. The love of Christ can not be comprehended by the knowledge of this world.
Now we have a condition where in our individual minds we are describing something that is tangible to us, but may sacrifice meaning when conversing with others. This is a time when words are inadequate to describe what we are feeling. The failure to communicate is because we are not all at the same level of understanding with our Father. The Father treats each of us as individuals and our fellowship with Him is as unique as a fingerprint. This is not to create an elitist class of super spiritual who stand taller before the Father. For there is no respect of persons with God. (Rom. 2:11) It has much to do with our desire to have a personal relationship with our Father. Even when I say our desire, it is all of Him. It is not our desire, but the desire of Christ, Himself, who is our life. The most I can say for our desire is that He takes us along for the ride. Our relationship to the Father is the same in fellowship as it is in salvation. It is all Him.
Our fellowship with the Father is joined with others of like mind in corporate fellowship. It is the unique bonding of a people through Christ who is their life. It is the reality of Colossians 1:27. To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
There is no way to harness the power of Christ or to program the inner confirmation of the Holy Spirit. If we were to design a curriculum teaching the concept of fellowship the result would be; failure. It would be nothing more than the vain philosophy of man imitating the reality of Christ. In the third dimension, there is no way to clone or duplicate that which is a spiritual truth. That which holds a fellowship together is nothing less than the living life of Christ. It is the many membered body of Christ of which Paul speaks. It is many expressions of the one Son. A true fellowship is intensive care for the weaker members. Today I may be the weaker member, but tomorrow it will be someone else.
In essence, a fellowship is not a conglomerate of believers hoping to find union with others of like mind. It is individual members who have found a union or identity with their Father through the life that is given to them in Christ. This life is then expressed to others by the only means we have in the third dimension. Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. (I John 4:7)