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The Body of Christ
by Susan Budensiek
1/04/2018 / Bible Studies
First and foremost we must remember that “God is not the author of confusion” as 1 Corinthians 14:33 tells us: The last part of this verse so often left unquoted, refers to all congregations of the true Church, not all of the many organizations of men. God’s Church, made up of many congregations of true Christians/believers/saints was meant to reflect peace, not confusion as we see all over today. “For God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.” (NAS)
A misunderstanding/misinterpretation of 1 Corinthians 12 is the catalyst for the spread of this plague, and it is very serious. The teaching that is so widespread now is the one that allows the “we agree to disagree” and “there are many routes to heaven” and “there are many spokes in the wheel of salvation” mindset to flourish. People sincerely believe these clichés but they are sincerely wrong.
Most of us are familiar with how the Body of Christ in 1 Corinthians 12 is compared with the human body which we are all so well acquainted with, obviously. We are taught that this means that the Body of Christ – Jesus’ Church – consists of many denominations, fellowships, assemblies, and communities of believers, all connected by the Holy Spirit working in believers wherever they are. This teaching asserts that Christ and His Body are divided amongst many different groups or organizations. This is counterfeit, just as money can be counterfeited – clever look-alikes, but not the real thing/truth.
Churches are teaching that the Body of Christ is a disconnected, formless spiritual body of disagreeing people and organizations, spread throughout professing Christianity. Not so. God created the human body so He is very well aware of the depth of the analogy He presents in His Word. What happens when a body part – an ear, a hand, or whatever – is severed from the human body? It dies. No body part can live long without the connective tissue and blood supply of the rest of the body.
Consider two more scriptures written by Paul to two different congregations.
Colossians 1:18 (NAS) He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.
Ephesians 1:22-23 (NAS) And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.
The Bible defines the Body of Christ as being the same as the Church. In Ephesians 4 Paul encourages the brethren to keep the unity in peace.
Ephesians 4:3-6 (NAS) being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.
There is no way this passage can be confused as meaning anything but the all-encompassing unity required of God’s people. Remember how Christ prayed for this unity in John 17:20-23?
20 "I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word;
21 that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.
Their Future Glory
22 "The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one;
23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.
It is widely accepted that the Church is a ‘type’ of Christ’s own Body and as its head He builds and governs it. Acts chapter 2 describes the Body as being unified in both love and doctrinal truth. There can be no denying that this passage shows that the entire Church (“whole body” and “every part”) must be walking together in complete doctrinal agreement under Christ’s authority.
Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. Romans 16:17 (NAS) A person who does what this verse dictates is going to feel isolated and alone. If that happens to a true believer, he/she is drawn even closer to the truth. Example: Peter denied Christ three times in one night because of the reaction of his human nature – he didn’t want to be arrested or be an outcast from society around him. Who can blame him for that? But we know the rest of the story – Peter was a true believer and he was immediately sorrowful and repentant for his deed, and drew even closer to the Messiah’s truth.
I was raised in church but always felt like I was missing something. Now the Word of God excites me! My curiosity enhances pursuance of discernment. I have often felt discouraged, but not totally defeated knowing that in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! Click here and TRUST JESUS NOW
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