One Body with Many Members

One Body with Many Members

One Body with Many Members:  Did you know that the Bible talks about a Body? The Body of Christ.

We understand that the Bible is talking about a spiritual Body by using the natural Body as an illustration.

Have you ever thought about your Body and how marvelous it is made?

Every part has its own function. We all know that our Body is made up of many different parts and it takes all of these parts to make up our Body, example, As we might be an older group, we tell our grandkids and point to, ear hears, eye sees, foot walks and we hold hands.

Did you know that the Bible also talks about a Body?  The Body of Christ.

We understand that the Bible is talking about a spiritual Body by using the natural Body as an illustration.

When we receive the Holy Spirit and Jesus lives in us, then by the Holy Spirit we have been joined together to make up one Body.  As we grow in grace and knowledge, we follow His commands and example, and He forms us to be what He wants us to be and we are members of His Body.

Jesus is the head of the Body, and we are the feet, hands, toes, fingers and other parts of the Body. Jesus being the head tells and directs us what to do since we are the members of the Body.

One of us may be a hugger, or an encourager like Barnabas, widows praying for others, put others needs before their own, acts of kindness to others, put Jesus first in their lives, teach their children and grandchildren, show love to others, etc, which are the fruits of the Holy Spirit.  Just being there gives support to the Body.  We all have a purpose in this wonderful Body, which is called the Body of Christ.

Paul tells us: 

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.

We do not have the same abilities, but what we have is important to the Body of Christ.  It takes every one of us to make up His Body.  The thing we all have in common, is the Holy Spirit.

Let’s see what Scriptures says about the Body.

Ephesians 2:16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.

Ephesians 4:3-6 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.  (4)  There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; (5) one Lord, one faith, one baptism;  (6)  one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in you all.

The Body Illustrates Our Unity in Christ

One Spirit refers to the Holy Spirit who baptizes each believer into the Body of Christ. The work of the Holy Spirit is to unify believers in Christ. This is the unity that the believer is instructed to keep.

The Word of God says, There is one Body (Eph. 4:4), not two, nor three, but one – only one. That “one Body” is the Body of Christ; that is, -every true Christian is to Christ what a person’s foot, hand, etc., is to that person.

Ephesians 4:25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one Body. 

We are called to promote truth and unity.

Ephesians 5:23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the Body.

Ephesians 5:29-30 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church (30) for we are members of his body.

The only thing found in Scripture, there is the one Body of Christ, formed by the “one Spirit” of God and this ties all Believers together. 

We know the members of that one Body are scattered all over the earth. We cannot assemble together in one place; therefore, we assemble in any convenient location for those who lives in that area.

There may be “two or three,” or ten or more. Jesus, the Savior, and Head of the Church, has committed Himself to be present in the midst of us when we assembled together in services in His Name.  We know, more of us can gather together a few hundred around the world during the Feast of Tabernacle at a planned location.

Matthew tells us: 

Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Paul shows there is organization to the Body of Christ:

Colossians 1:18 And He {Jesus} is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

Jesus is our center of services, and the Temple was the center of Israel worship service.  This is why I will spend so much time covering Jesus.

We know the Churches of God does not agree in all doctrine and other things from the Scriptures, in fact we have divisions over small things.   

What are we going to do? Not meet with different members of the Body at the various High Days or the Feast of Tabernacles.  That is one of the reasons why we have so many different members of the Body.

We still have many things in common.  Jesus is the center of all things, the Sabbath observance, Feast days, baptism with laying on hands, and the basic doctrines.

Hebrews 6:1-2 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,  (2)  of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment  Doctrines of the Church of God.

Romans 12:3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.

Romans 12:4,5 For just as each of us has one Body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, (5) so in Christ we, though many, form one Body, and each member belongs to all the others.

Each of us is connected with every other member of the Body and that is what counts.  By the Holy Spirit.

Romans 12:6-8  We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; (7) if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; (8) if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

The Body of Christ, like all bodies, is comprised of many parts. There are limbs, organs, and various members that, when left alone, are useless, but when assembled make up the entire Body

1 Corinthians 10:17 Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf.

Let’s go to 1 Corinthians 12 and go through this verse by verse.

Paul has been talking to the Corinthians about their spiritual gifts and their part in the Body of Christ, and then he goes on to say these words:

1 Corinthians 12:12 For as the Body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one Body, being many, are one Body, so also is Christ.

Again, the Body Illustrates Our Unity in Christ

The local church is to be united.

1 Corinthians 1:10 I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.

1 Corinthians 1:13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul?

1 Corinthians 11:17-18 Now in giving these instructions I do not praise you, since you come together not for the better but for the worse.  (18)  For first of all, when you come together as a church, I hear that there are divisions among you, and in part I believe it.

The Church is not to be a battle zone.

James 4:1 Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?

Now Paul answers the question, “How did we get into that body?” Again.

1 Corinthians 12:12 For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ. 

1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one Body–whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free–and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.  {Greeks or Gentiles)

Important:  The body-like unity of Christians is not a goal to achieve; it is a fact to be recognized. 

The Holy Spirit to make Jesus Himself real to every believer.

John 16:15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.”

Jesus said the relationship would be this, a beautiful way of saying it.

John 14:20 On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.

When the Spirit baptizes us, received by the laying on of hand, into the Body of Christ, he puts us into Christ and then Jesus is in us.

The Body shares a common faith, conversion, fellowship, and goal.

Ephesians 4:13-14 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; (14) that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,

Ephesians 4:15-16 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.  (16)  From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows, and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Colossians 2:19 They have lost connection with the head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.

The Body can grow and function effectively because we each and what we do is valuable in the body today.  Paul now explains to us just how it works.  

1 Corinthians 12:14 For in fact the Body is not one member but many.

Paul is telling us that each Christian is an equal part of the Body of Christ. 

1 Corinthians 12:15-16 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I am not of the Body,” is it therefore not of the Body? (16) And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I am not of the Body,” is it therefore not of the Body?   {two examples from the body)

1 Corinthians 12:17-18 If the whole Body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling? (18)  But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the Body just as He pleased.    {simple question to ask us – diversity in Body is essential}

God has Designed the Church or Body to achieve His Purposes, serving at His pleasure.  The Father gives gifts in accordance with His design and plans, not ours.  Never feel insignificant in the Body of Jesus.

1 Corinthians 12:19 And if they were all one member, where would the Body be?

Example:  godly example, inspires other, teaches children, etc.  Now It is amazing that so many people get the idea that they do not need the rest of the body; they can function on their own; they have their own abilities, their own ministry, and they can do things quite apart from others.

1 Corinthians 12:20 But now indeed there are many members, yet one Body.

Now, Paul gets into the meat of the problem, showing less glamorous parts of the body are just as important.

1 Corinthians 12:21 And 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.”

3 John 1:9 I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will not welcome us.

1 Corinthians 12:22 No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary.

Romans 12:16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

1 Corinthians 12:23 And those members of the Body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty,

Our unrespectable parts are treated with even more respect by covering them with clothes.  Opinionated “ranking” of importance among brethren is wrong.  Just flat out wrong.

1 Corinthians 12:24 but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the Body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it,

God has arranged the Body of Christ (church) in such a way that the honor of every member is displayed, how we treat one another.

James 2:1-2 My brothers and sisters, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ must not show favoritism.  (2)  Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in filthy old clothes also comes in. 

James 2:3-4 If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,”  (4)  have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?

1 Corinthians 12:25 that there should be no schism in the Body, but that the members should have the same care for one another.

Unity is the principal purpose.  No one should ever be neglected within the church.  “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”

Any gift which does not provoke love, tolerance, and forbearance toward other believers is not a gift from the Lord.  Love is the final and acid test.

We are to help one another to remain faithful.           

1 Corinthians 12:26  And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.

1 Corinthians 12:27 Now you are the Body of Christ, and members individually.

Christ loves His Church or Body.  We are called to this way of life by the Father. 

Each one of us has been given a special gift and called to a specific purpose. But we know on our own we will not accomplish much. Joining together with other believers and using our gifts for the work of Christ is what brings meaning and fullness to the Body of Christ.

The unity of the Body of Christ is created in Jesus Christ.

Psalms 133:1 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity!

When someone hurts, the Body of Christ should reach out to comfort and help them, until they are okay again.  We all need each other, without each other, we will not be complete.

We are all the members of the Body of Christ, many members, yet one.

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