Iron Sharpens Iron

The topic of today’s study is ‘Iron Sharpens Iron’, based on a nifty bible verse – Proverbs 27:17:

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

It’s fascinating that, as Christians, we are sharpened just by being around other like-minded believers.  Some of the questions further down relate to on the early believers, at a time not too longer after Jesus had ascended to heaven – an amazing image of people looking after one another, no-one in need, praising God.  Many miracles, blessings, wonders; it was an amazing time of fellowship together.  Here are the two main passages:  Firstly, Acts 2:43-47:

43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts.They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

The second passage – another description of the way the earliest believers spent their time together:

32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had.33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all 34 that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

36 Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”), 37 sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.


  1. Consider what possible things the word ‘Fellowship’ conjures up, e.g. church-stereotypes, perhaps the true meaning of what the bible says?
  2. Comment on the way the early believers spent their time together in either of these passages: Acts 2:43-47 and Acts 4:32-36.
  3. 1 Samuel 8:1-9.  Which is better: Mankind being in control, or God?  Why?
  4. Acts 18:24-28.  How does ‘iron sharpening iron’ apply to this story?
  5. Bonus Round: Matthew 18:20 says ‘For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.’  How does this tie in with the two greatest commandments (Love the Lord and Love your neighbour)?