Iron sharpeneth iron;
so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.
We use steel to sharpen steel,
and we blend with friends to sharpen each another.
MacDonald reminds us:
In the days of family hospitality and feasting together
before the controls and fake science of tyrants
There was a common scene of the host at a table sharpening
the carving knife by drawing each side of the cutting edge
against a hardened steel rod with fine ridges.
Preparing to carve the savory meats of communion fellowship
Just as the action of iron against iron sharpens,
so the interchange of ideas among people makes us more acute
in our thinking.
Sharing each other’s opinions gives a helpful breadth of view.
Asking questions sharpens wits.
Friendly intercommunication hones the personality
As by friction, one iron instrument is sharpened and polished
by contact with another, so we may be a help to each other
by interesting and profitable intercourse and exchange of thought.
A recluse is always a very one-sided individual.
We are blessed by fellowship mingling
We learn to understand others needs and others sorrows,
We find gain by welcoming in others.
We need those who are superior to our own knowledge.
Those who are deeper in their virtues and character, then ours.
Fellowship is is precious edge sharpening of one with another
and this is increasingly sweet as our days grow darker.
We’re not designed for solitude, but for society.
As one has written:
It is only as a social being that our powers and affections
are fully expanded.
Iron sharpens iron.
Steel, whetted against a knife, sharpens the edge.
So in the collision of different minds each whets the edge of the other.
We owe some of the most valuable discoveries of science
to this active reciprocity.
In the sympathies of friendship, when the mind is dull and
the countenance overcast, a word from a friend renews
blunted energy and exhilarates the countenance.
In our Creeds this is called “the communion of saints”
This is the believers privilege
This is the bond of brotherhood.
We should never walk alone,
Two are better then one
Where two or three are gathered together Jesus comes
He’s always knocking
So sharpen His iron by godly communication.
Walk together in mutual concern for each other’s infirmities,
Walk together in mutual concern for each other’s trials,
Walk together in mutual concern for each other’s temptations.
We build integrity of character through scrupulous honesty
in dealings with each other.
Avoidance is our bane
Loners care only for themselves and they spit on the common good.
Fools care nothing for thoughtful discourse;
all they do is run off at the mouth.
When wickedness arrives, shame’s not far behind;
contempt for life is contemptible.
Many words rush along like rivers in flood,
but deep wisdom flows up from artesian springs. …
Proverbs 18:1-4 MSG
Good friends deep in godly character who walk with Jesus and are
following God’s Spirit are partners of great importance.
We learn from one another; we take character and color from one another.
Our character eventually shows in our faces.
Our skills are honed in a hard process of friction.
We need to run the gauntlet of a two eagle-eyed edge sharpening
We need the techniques of objective testings.
Iron sharpens iron, complaints aren’t bad.
But Complaints mean work!
Allowances have to be made; we need to be fussy.
We need to perceive our flaws to have them eliminated.
Iron sharpens iron.
We need every kind of sharpening
We need exacting discipline
We need to develop our skills