Friday, July 19, 2013

Discerning Body Life

Just thinking about the Church this morning... the Church as the Body of Christ...

"In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not." John 1:4-5 KJV

"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. 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. For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 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. 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. 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? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. 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.' On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 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, which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it." 1 Corinthians 12:12-27 ESV

This is a great mystery. Really it is. In Christ's Body we find belonging, honor and purpose. It is a dynamic that one person can never see in it's fullness because much of it hidden in interactions that other people are having with one another. Compassion is multiplied. Care is multifaceted. There is individuality in unity. There is no need to 'talk to' our function or another person's function. The Body and each member has a 'Christian Dynamic' or a Christ likeness that give off pure light. The dynamic is only understood in part but experienced in fullness.

"So that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love." Ephesians 4:14-16 ESV

In this place there is a supply. I say place not because the Church is in a geographic location per se but because it is a dynamic we can be present in or removed from. It is more than entering into the front door of a building.

"The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?" 1 Corinthians 10:16 KJV

"Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord." 1 Corinthians 11:27 KJV

Is communion the wine and the bread alone?

Communion is not linked to my salvation but what do I miss if I miss communion? What supply is cut off?

If I see the Church as only a social place... a supermarket for my needs to be met... a playground to live out my desires... do I then partake of the communion 'unworthily'? If so God can change our minds and restore to us a true perspective and glimpse of His divine presence in the corporate dynamic.

Lord, If we don't have a Church like this lead us to one. If we do have access to one, or many, open our eyes to see if for what it really is not to have mouths open in criticism but eyes open in awe of the edification that happens in honor because You are present.

"Then came one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues and spoke to me, saying, 'Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.' And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal... And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it" Revelation 21:9-11, 22-24 ESV

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