Thursday, February 17, 2011

one body / many parts / active service

For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:12

The main metaphor in the New Testament to describe the church is an organic one. Paul teaches it most clearly in this context. The church thrives like a human body. There are many parts to that body, but they cannot live or function alone. They contribute to the entire body's health and purpose.

This is why for a Christian, involvement with other Christians in a local church is absolutely crucial to spiritual survival. It is not that we isolate or insulate ourselves. But it is where the Body grows, matures, thrives and lives. We miss out on much when we do not serve as God designed. That means that the Body of Christ is this active and dynamic experience. The body is on the move. It is doing things. And the church is the Body of Christ, not just when it is huddled together, but more importantly when it is serving the community around it together with the love of Jesus. That is something that is entirely amazing.

The whole point of 1 Corinthians 12 is to emphasize the vital role each person has in this scenario. Every person is uniquely gifted by God to serve Him and love others. And Christians are to lead the way in this kind of community care. The gospel blazes its way forward into lives of people whom God wants to transform through the work of the Body of Christ. So will we really step out and dare to serve God together?

- Prepare your minds for action.
1 Peter 1:13

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