Yesterday, we saw that we have been bought at a price, Christ’s blood, and we now belong to God if we are in Christ. You can see that post by clicking this link: Who Am I? I Have Been Bought with a Price and Belong to God. I am too lazy, yes I really am, to post all the links to the other “Who Am I?” posts. You can find those links in the last post link listed above. Forgive my laziness!
Today, I want us to see that all believers are members of Christ’s Body, which is the Church. This topic flows out of 1 Corinthians 12:12-31.
1 Corinthians 12:12–31 (ESV)
12 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. 13 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.
14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.
27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. 28 And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 31 But earnestly desire the higher gifts.
And I will show you a still more excellent way.
We have seen that we are accepted in Christ, are God’s children, are Christ’s friends, that we have been justified, we are united with Christ, and we have been bought by Christ to belong to God. Now, we see that we also belong to each other!
Not only do we belong to God, but we belong to each other.
Obviously, we do not belong to each other in the same way we belong to God, but 1 Corinthians 12 teaches us that the Church needs people. Not just one person, like a pastor or worship leader, but the Church, especially a local church, needs active members who belong. And I say belong because that is what a Church is. It is a group of people who are members of Christ, we are united with Christ, but we also are united to each other. We need each other. Why?
In America, it is really easy to fall into the trap of individualism. American Christians are quick to say they need Christ, but at the same time, they deny they need a local body of believers in their life. Thus, the number of professing believers who do not attend church regularly are staggeringly high.
If there is anything that I want you to take away from this post it is that we, who are believers, need other believers in our lives. Who can say that they have all the spiritual gifts listed just prior to 1 Corinthians 12:12? None of us can. Why? Because God has not distributed the gifts evenly to everyone. This is not because God is unfair, but because he loves us and longs for us to love others as well. We need God and we need others. That is a difficult pill to swallow for Americans. We need other people.
In the local church, it is imperative that the body be composed of many members who are different. They cannot all be eyes, having a brilliant vision for the future of the church, yet lacking the hands and feet to fulfill that vision. The body cannot be all hands, otherwise, they would not know where to do the work needed if they had not heard or seen what to do. The body cannot be made up of only mouths, noses, ears, feet, hands, eyes, arms, legs, and etc. If that were the case, the local church that looked like that would not be healthy.
Each of us needs other believers to help us to grow spiritually, to help the local church grow spiritually, and to direct others to Christ. Each of us is also needed! We don’t need to think that just because we don’t like the spotlight that we cannot serve. Think of all the organs of the body. We do not see them, yet they are super important! Likewise, those who are in the spotlight and those who are not are all important. The janitor of the church is just as needed as the pastor.
So, get plugged into a local church. Don’t be the average American Christian who gets sucked into the sin of individualism. Plug yourself in, get involved in a discipling group or small group, start a Bible Study, go to a Bible Study, join the worship team, cook food for the sick or needy at church, watch infants in the nursery, just do something! It doesn’t have to be in the spotlight.
In all that you do honor Christ as the Head of the Body. Glorify Him.