Saturday, September 13, 2008

Matthew 12:46-50 "The Body"

Read Matthew 12:46-50.

"For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother." NIV
Jesus isn't saying to leave your biological family, but He is stressing the importance of the spiritual family to the believer.

I met a man at Denny's yesterday who said he is a believer. When I asked where he worships, he held out his arms, looked down at his body and said, "Right here in the temple of the Lord." He is missing out on a very important dynamic of the Christian life.

The body of Christ is a powerful and empowering unit. It is made up of all kinds of people that have all kinds of different abilities. When brought together for a common goal -- to worship the Father and evangelize the world -- they are unstoppable. It's not an accident that we are called the "body" of Christ. Not only are we the physical representation of Christ on earth with Christ as our head, but we work together as parts of a body work together. Ephesians 4:16 says, "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." Each part of the body has a job to do and when we all work together, we make up a complete functioning unit.

But besides being a powerful unit that is accomplishing God's goals, the body is an empowering force for each individual. Many people are alone in this journey of Christianity. They don't have family members or close friends that believe. Therefore, the body becomes their family and their support system. They are there in crisis and in triumph. Believers have a unique, commonly-shared challenge of navigating this life as outsiders, and walking together gives each individual a strength to go on. The relationships forged in the body of Christ don't just last for a lifetime, they are for eternity.

Thank you, Lord, for the precious brothers and sisters you have given me from all over the globe. We link arms together to form a bond that can never be broken.

Further Thoughts:
  1. Look up Scriptures with "the body of Christ." What further insights do you find about the body of Christ and it's function.
  2. Compare and contrast Moses and Hebrew children's journey to the promise land with Jesus and the disciples' journey. How did they work as a body? Where did they fail? Which group best represents the body where you are now involved?
  3. Where do you fit in the body? If you don't know, you can take a spiritual gifts test that will help get you started by seeing your strengths and weaknesses. Ask your pastor about taking a test. Other believers who know you best can also help guide you. But ultimately, you need to seek the Lord to show You where He is at work and wants you to join Him.
  4. Are you currently a part of a body of believers? If not, tomorrow is Sunday! Find a group and worship with them. It's not only a benefit, it's a command. And for good reason. You don't have to stand alone -- there's a body that needs you and you need them.

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