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January 15, 2022 2:00 am
Advertisers know that a trim and beautiful physique helps sell products. Think of what that means in a spiritual sense. Can a spiritually fit and beautifully functioning local church attract people to Christ? Jesus said that He would build His church. So do we have any part in that? Since Paul compared the church to a physical body, is there anything that individual members can do to help beautify it? Let's look at four principles that will help us do exactly that.
This teaching is from the series Church? Who Needs It.Links:
This week's DevoMail: https://connnectwithskip.com/devomail
One style of ministry is one method of getting things done. One way that God works in one God works through to the exclusion of everyone else will I get the idea. As I read this I love my that I get that not only from here, but I get that around the natural world that will Skip a week and today we continue our servers about the church is Skip shows us what it means to be spiritually fit using those diet pills. They advertise on TV about the amazing we allow you whatever you want to absolutely no exercise. Eventually you'll look like a bundle or swimsuit model. It's incredible is also its notice in order to have a beautiful body exercise and discipline ourselves about the same principles are true for a healthy church body to stay with us to find out more today. But before we get started, we have an excellent resource from Levi Lesko this month is more damning comments from the American thing to accomplish this talents claim or accomplishment in history the world resurrect Levi Lesko thinking about is the last effort on the moon between the battle and entered the cross like the tattered five. The only thing that Secular society, realizing their downside to turning from God.
Sure, you know, you see people leaving the church. You and I are anxiety higher rate you have the lowering of intelligent and church were not in the Bible you three doing well there you go for a new heart resource to $35 hundred 92.com hundred 98, chapter 12, so mark your Bibles will join Skip reveals an unpleasant truth about ourselves and I think it's a universal fact lease in this country that most people don't like their own body. I think probably every one of us has some features that we notice growing up we notice it. Every time you look in the mirror and we think it is change that one thing or two or three, but at least one. In fact, a poll was conducted that ask people to simple question if you could change one thing about your life what would it be in the answer almost overwhelmingly was my physical appearance my way. My body type my face, my age my hair that's easy to do these days. They wanted to change their physical appearance and this is the reason why the dieting industry is such a powerful $40 billion per year industry because of that truth. This is the reason why Abbott machine ads dominate late-night television and why health club, gym memberships still seem to be pretty strong even in a failing economy. We want to change that Mark Twain once said the only way to keep your health is to eat what you don't want drink what you don't like and do what you'd rather not.
Now I think most Christians feel much the same way about their spiritual body. Their church I think every Christian would probably look at the church in their church and say okay it's all right but it could use some improvement and they would be right.
The church can always use some improvement. The church is always growing and today I want to show you how it can be improved. Now all of this today centers around the phrase that is found three times in the writings of Paul with the phrase, the body of Christ.
The body of Christ first Corinthians 12 Ephesians 4 Colossians 1 that metaphor is employed, that the church is like the body of Christ is one of Paul's favorite descriptions and I would even say that is the Holy Spirit's description is the Holy Spirit wanted to describe the church is like.
He didn't say it's an organization or an institution, but it's like a body it's an organism and we have to realize that that's what the church that's what were called to be a living, breathing life enjoying organism, far more than an organization. The corpses organized and it's all Barrett's rings together and nicely organized night but it's data's lifeless, but a church is an organism that grows and moves to changes.
Chapter 12 is a chapter that compares spiritual gifts better term gifting's spiritual enabling's with the complexities of the human body. Now my early college was spent studying the sciences like integrated zoology and human anatomy and radium physics and I got to look at the human body close up and discover David was right on is that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Boy are we the average human body has 100 trillion cells. There are more cells in your body than there are galaxies in the entire universe and in every single cell is like a city in itself in every cell's nucleus and every nucleus is that material DNA deoxyribonucleic acid 46 segments 23 for mom. 23. From dad that program every single cell. How it is an act from the moment of conception to demise how you can engage with you to look like a tiger to be, etc. all that is preprogrammed then and it's so intricate that if you were to translate that densely coded information from each cell from a single cell into written form. It would fill a library with 4000 books for thousand books. If you were to do a liable reading of that information of one cell. You can read three letters per second would take you 31 years reading day and night nonstop 31 years such as oneself. We are fearfully and wonderfully made this body of ours but as wonderful as it is. It's also complex and because it's complex. It can get messy.
We get sick. There can be diseases. That's exactly why Paul is writing this book.
See the church at Corinth was this beautiful expression of the body of Christ in Corinth, but over time it got disease that became an ugly body. It grew sick was torn by divisions. They tolerated immorality. They were lax in their discipline they were taking each other to the secular law courts and Paul writes this book to address those issues and in chapter 12.
He tells this local body how to become beautiful. Once again, for principles to make or build a beautiful body Narita lot of Texas morning and I'm to give you these four principles I'm not can it be labor by God's grace any of them, but simply apply them. The first is to recognize variety. I think you notice if you look around that were all a bit different are Taser a bit different.
Our capacities are a bit different, so watch this verse for there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.
There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. There are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all those three verses are what we call appositional statements that are grammatically parallel statements. Basically saying the same truth with just a little bit of twist on the many gifts. One source, but the way it's constructed.
It's if he's giving honor to the Trinity verse four it's the Holy Spirit that is in view in verse five, the sun, the living Lord in verse six God the father.
Paul wants us to know that the triune God is involved intricately in the body of Christ one body. Many gifts let's go on verse seven, but the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all for the one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same spirit to another faith by the same spirit to another gifts of healings by the same spirit to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.
But one and the same spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as he wills. Now, without entering into the argument to argue is he speaking about natural talents here or supernatural gifting's that's really not the argument in view at all and I do want to enter into it. It's enough to say that these are divine enablement's for us to do God's work on the earth, and specifically in the church are divine enabling's and the greater point here is that there's not one gift is not one style of ministry. There's not one method of getting things done is not one way that God works and is not one group, the God works through to the exclusion of everyone else will I get the idea. As I read this, the God loves variety.
He loves variety that I get that not only from here, but I get that from looking around the natural world.
Look around the world and it's different go to different places. It all looks different. There's different kinds of terrain there's ocean there's mountains, there's desert this rain forest. There's tundra and aren't we glad because if every place on earth looked exactly the same, or would you go on vacation would be very boring. But God loves variety, and as I look around I noticed variety of plants and animals. Scientists leaders over 10 million different species of plants and animals and are you in our world. Only two of 2 million of them have been named and catalogued. God loves variety, and when it comes to the church.
God loves variety.
There's a bunch of gifts listed some count nine others doing a full account of the New Testament listings will count 15 others will say 19 others will say 22 gifts of the spirit. It's funny how people will argue over that number again I don't think that is the point.
I think the point is this. You as a Christian, have at least one of them, if not more, and there is an infinite number of possibilities with our different personalities and God gifting's for there to be a wonderful show of that variety. Unfortunately, Christians have adopted a strategy that says save them and stick them in a mold will get them saved will see them come to Christ and then we'll put them in our mold. You must read this version of the Bible to be correct. You must like this kind of music to be holy must say words like this instead of enjoying the variety. There's a whole story at children's parable that pictures the tools in Jesus carpentry shop having a meeting and brother Hammer is the one presiding over the meeting before the meeting. The other tools think that brother Hammer should leave the meeting because he's too noisy examiner brother Hammer says well if you want me to leave them brother screw also has to leave because you gotta turn around and around to get them to do anything brother screw up Jackson. He says okay listen if you want me to leave them brother playing also has to leave because you know everything he does is on the surface he has no depth brother plan says okay if I have to withdraw them brother rule must also withdraw because he thinks he's the only one who's right, he measures everyone against himself brother rule says okay I'll leave if I delete brother sandpaper as the leave he so rough and he rubs people the wrong way was they were arguing and watched Jesus to build a pulpit from which to preach and wouldn't you know it.
Jesus use the hammer and the screw and the plane and the rule in the sandpaper. All of the tools that were getting along with each other. The variety of the bunch to do his work exposed the message behind that little parable is that God reserves the right to use people you don't get along with and we might look at them and wonder how can use that person answer because he is God and he likes it. He loves variety. There's no clones in the kingdom. There is variety in the kingdom he made each one unique. Now something else about verse four, five and six. Not only are there different gifts, but there's different ways. The gifts are exercised, sort of.
The thought behind those three verses together is what it means you get to people and both of them have the same spiritual gift, but it comes out different. The two men that have a gift of teaching both of the pastors but I guarantee you if you give the same text of Scripture to Chuck Swindoll in the real reason you are going to have two completely different sermons.
Both of the get the teaching both exercise it very uniquely or evangelism. There's a Billy Graham who can speak to stadiums as people who can do one-on-one evangelism. Again, variety, when Jesus healed people when he walked the earth.
How did he do it was the same canned approach. Every time you read the healing boxes placed right hand and left shoulder look wide-eyed and say these words EA know you didn't do that. In fact, it seems like you didn't do the same anytime. Sometimes he lay hands on a person may be healed. Other times he'd speak a word and as he spoke a word from afar. They were healed. At other times, the person would be leaving the scene and says as he left he was healed and there was a time Jesus made a spitball out of mud and stuck it in the guys I that's unconventional that's different variety.
Don't cite variety. Enjoy God made you and he tossed away the mold. Each is unique.
Each is unique recognize variety. A second way to make the body of Christ.
Beautiful is to emphasize unity. I look at the next two verses is a unit verse 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.
For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free of all been made to drink into one Spirit.
Know this truth gives balance to the first truth. Unity balances out variety is can you see a problem for over here celebrating and recognizing our variety in our uniqueness and our individuality can lead to anarchy.
Got a bunch of members of the church, all doing their own thing without a cohesiveness about it. So variety to be balance needs unity we got we had exercise our gifts, but we gotta do it together for the same purpose in the same goal has to be unity in the church. This works we have, just like a human body in the church.
There's a head in the head is the pastor, the head is in a bishop or pope, or an elder. The head is who Christ is called the head of his body, the church just like any human body that had sort like control central everything comes from the brain and that nervous system.
Getting the message out to all the different parts so is the church Jesus is the head, and he sends out the message and the impulse I see the Holy Spirit is the nervous system, conveying the wishes of the head to all of the members so that they operate smoothly together conveying that network your body, your human body. If it's healthy is is a great example of how unity works. It's marvelous is a very simple, in fact very simplistic illustration stomach sends a message to the brain. Hunger. Hunger.
Hunger. Hunger. So the brain tells the legs walked toward the barbecue legs do it, and walked to the barbecue closer you get your eyes now spot the meat your nose smells onions cooking into the meat and the green chili next to that, then the brain says to the hands rabbit put bread on it. Let us in stop and stuff it in your mouth and your satisfied and life goes on happily so variety of gifts and unity of purpose. Purpose brings profit to all, just like a human body. That's the point of verse seven which revisit that, but the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all to get that for the profit of all the gift that God is given to you in the gift that is given to me isn't for individual gratification.
Hey, I got a cool gift you like it.
It's for mutual edification for the profit of all for that to happen.
There must be communication if members don't communicate to each other and there isn't that coordinated effort. It's going to be very jerky and movement and very spaz sick and not smooth and not coordinated. It'll be very destructive when my son was a toddler. He put his hand on the stove I got phone call I was out of town and my wife said you wouldn't believe your son did electric stove red-hot teakettle about to go on. He is curious and he puts his little hand on top and pushes it on the electric stovetop and for a long time. He bore that spiral Mark on his hand will luckily he had a gift from God's call pain. Pain is a gift.
As soon as he felt that in that little pain message hit his brain. He shouted to wake up the neighbor pulled his hand off. I am so glad because imagine if something inhibited the message getting from the hand of the brain that this is really hot and destructive leprosy was all about the person conceal any longer. He couldn't feel the pain.
He couldn't feel what was happening to his limbs.
The message system was not working. There was no communication, so there was eventual death had a friend when I was growing up, good friend who got MS multiple sclerosis and I watched him deteriorate and I talked to some doctors about his condition and the way they explained it to me is that there are hardened patches that form on the on the cortex of the brain and the cortex of the spinal cord so that the messages the impulses aren't making contact and that's why his movements were so jerky and eventually he was completely paralyzed while unfortunately that's what the world so often sees when he looks at the church and see this beautiful, wonderful, in shape body smooth, coordinated efforts so often at sea, striving and fighting and a weakened church and that's one of Satan's greatest desires and plays right into his desires. One of his biggest traps is that he would get us to fight each other because now were so distracted fighting each other. They were forgetting the real enemy is.
Next I will get more advice on how we can build a better body for Christ and I'll let you know how to get a copy of today's study here in just a moment.
First, Skip going to invite you in a very special trip. Lenny and I are taking a group to Israel in 2022 and we want to invite you to join us will visit places like Nazareth, the Jordan River. The Dead Sea and Jerusalem including the Temple Mount and the garden tomb and that's just a flyby look at the itinerary. Find out more about the firstname.lastname@example.org/see a BQ like Skip it if you want a copy of today's message. How to build a beautiful body. Give us a call at 1-800-922-1888 would be happy to send you a copy on CD for just four dollars for shipping and comeback. As we are more bodybuilding tips to help the church gets virtually right here in Skip division presentation of connection you in an ever-changing time