Life in the Body of Christ
It is important to be part of a local church or christian community.
“Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another . . .” Hebrews 4:25
Last week we learned about being part of Christ’s Body, the Church. We also talked about how important it is for every believer to be part of a local body of believers., a “little c” church.
These days, you can “attend” church online. You can sing songs, hear great preaching, and even give money. But you would miss your chance to make a difference in the lives of other believers. That’s why Hebrews 4:25 says, “not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another . . .” You AND your disciples need to physically “show up” at church or in a fellowship group.
The New Testament is full of instructions on relating to one another. In fact, 56 passages include the phrase “one another” or “each other.”* Here’s just a few:
• Love one another – 15 separate times in the New Testament we are commanded to love each other (John 13:34-35, Romans 13:8, 1 Thessalonians 4:9 to name a few). When Jesus was asked to name the greatest commandment, He told us there are two: To love God with all our hearts, and to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:37-40). He said that all the commands of Scripture were summed up in these.
• Serve one another – Galatians 5:13 tells us to “serve one another humbly in love.” Jesus was our example, saying in Matthew 20:28, “the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” This world is filled with people who care only about themselves. When we put others first and serve each other with pure motives, the world takes notice, and God is glorified.
• Live in harmony with one another (Romans 12:16) – In music, harmony means not doing the same thing as everyone else, but playing or singing something different that blends with others, increasing the beauty and power of the song. On the other hand, just one person playing the wrong note can make the whole group sound terrible!
In the same way, when we are in conflict with our brothers and sisters in the Body of Christ, or worse, spreading that conflict to others, the whole body is “out of tune.” It stops functioning as it should. Ask the Lord through His Holy Spirit to use you to build unity instead of conflict.
*For a list of all the New Testament commands concerning “one another,” see http://www.mecf.net/one_anothers.html.
Pray this week:
That God will give you opportunities to serve, love and live in harmony with others.
The church is the body of Christ... are you using your gifts as part of a church body? If you don't have a church, we have a resource for finding a church!