This broadcaster has 363 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
October 21, 2019 1:30 pm
The sermon this morning is one body many parts. You can be finding your place in first Corinthians chapter 12 second paragraph really out of a section of Scripture that speaks specifically to the church. The whole letter first written speech to the church but take verses 12 through 20 this morning and focus on this particular passage as we read this text I want you to think with me.
Do you see the church like God does verse 12 for just as the body is one it 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'm not an 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 the sense of hearing.
If the whole body were near 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. Again, I would ask you this this question this morning. Do you see the church like God does. I think one of the easy traps churches can fall into is being more man centered, seeing the church from a man's perspective instead of God centered, seeing the church from God's perspective jotted down a few statements that I hope will help us to think through how easy it is to move in a man centered direction how we must be very intentional to stay in a God centered direction. Usually the draft begins when we become more consumer driven than cross driven church becomes more about my needs and about me as opposed to Christ and what brings him glory. Many like to be entertained when they come to a service where the church gathers like this by a servant of God, but few are coming to be trained to be servants of God instead of a wartime mentality.
We much prefer our one day I will mentality or even a retirement mentality of one day I did. We feel much more comfortable participating in church as if it were a cruise. She up right instead of a battle ship, you get what I'm trying to communicate this morning. Somehow, our perspective, living in the world gets offkilter and it's important that we come back to the word of God and focus on what he intends the glory of God, making about Christ rather than the glory of man making it about us we go horribly, eternally wrong.
If we miss what God intended for the church and we comment we participated in a way that's different than what God intended. We pray for the world around us pays for it, but most of all, God is dishonored when we treat his church is anything less than he intended. In the New Testament.
A number of analogies are given for the church to help us to to get our minds wrapped around what he did design it to be.
We see the household of God where there's a perfect father who leads his family the household of God. We see a building, a good a good analogy, a building that is being built in Jesus himself being the cornerstone we see a bride who is being prepared. One day for the groom to come in to get his bride.
We see as in our text this morning. The body the body of Christ being illustrated by a human body, one body with many parts with Jesus as the head now as we look at first Corinthians chapter 12 there are a few things that we should know it's a it's a letter written to a church in a tough community and atop city and atop culture economics were there. God's and whatever economics the financials when the money was front and center. It was the party life that was going on in Corinth and so many labels were given to that city.
But bottom line is, the church wasn't living in a very easy culture to be the kind of church that God intended for it to be.
Paul would help with this church on the second missionary journey as you read through acts and that on his third missionary journey. He writes this letter back to them to respond to reports that he had heard that there were problems in the church and that they had a number of questions that they wanted cleared up.
So when you think about this. This overall outline of first Corinthians the first four chapters are all about divisions in the church in that interesting.
We know the enemy comes at us in that direction that divisions and so he goes after first in those first four chapters quite a bit of space given, but it shows God's heart for the unity of the church we moving to chapters 5 and six at sexual immorality, wanting a pure church not only a united church, but a pure church moving to chapter 7 it's a whole chapter on marriage. One of the great chapters that we often times overlooked were teaching men and women how to live out Mary's life and then eight through 10.
All the idols and then when you move in the 11 through 14. These chapters is the gathering of church was the church supposed to be like what you do when you meet together positive function capacity carry itself out. How should it be sent out to do the work that God has given us.
And of course we at the apex. In chapter 15 the resurrection were all driven everything that we do by the resurrection of Jesus Christ before he gives his closing remarks in chapter 16, but I want you to go back to verse 12 in chapter 12. As were looking at this site section on the gathering of the church we see first the church is one body read verse 12 again for just as the body is one notice all the times that one is used here, 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 baptized into one body, Jews or Greeks laser free and all were made to drink of one Spirit. Think about this one body for just a minute. It's a supernatural thing what God does in the body, not even the human body. It's it's amazing to me that someone can believe there is not a God when they see all the intricacies and the complexities of the human body itself. It's amazing.
There had to be a designer and even if one human body could've possibly evolved with all of its complexities how the world could a perfect match have evolved with all of its complexities. At the same time so that the human race could be propagated to me this is mind-boggling. As one writer said that we know at Calvary.
It would take more faith to be an atheist and it would be a a believer in the one true God. There has to be a a designer, just as this illustration of the human body shows us how God brings all these different members together to form one body as I was studying through the text.
I was trying to think what is a really good way to show how this human body works so well together. I thought about a runner who would run the 100 m hurdles and how without runners running these hurdles.
All these different body parts are working together to accomplish this goal of running this race and are very fast pace you think about the that is involved in seeing you think about the feet and running at. I can't even imagine I'm I'm not a hurdler by the weather that probably surprises some of you but I will read a couple of instructions on what you needed to do to run the hurdles and I was thinking just what happens in the feet of that the the instructions work.
Bring the foot that isn't on the ground that's called your lead leg up to your behind and then quickly extended over the hurdle now most of you can't even do that.
But some of you may have at one day at one time dragged the trail leg sideways over the side of the hurdle. After the lead leg has passed over the ankle and knee are supposed to be the same distance from the ground, the gospel ended up not laying down in the ankle in the near supposed to be of the same distance from the ground. The straight line along the shin with a cath in between the ankle and knee must be parallel to the ground must be parallel to the hurdle not to me that's that's pretty impressive that someone can get their legs to do all of that and running these hurdles while having just the right number of steps in the right place and the right momentum in the right lead to actually run a race but it didn't even really occurred to me what the arms were doing all of that time and on down in these instructions that rotate your leading arm out and back when you have cleared the hurdle just about halfway allow your arm and the freedom to go out and down but do not let your elbow drift away from your body. Again, this is pretty complicated to me.
It takes a lot of training.
These guys are out there and make it look easy, running over the hurdles. But again, the body can be trained to do some incredible things because God made it with that capacity. With all of its members are working together were wonderful illustration of what God does in the church that the church is able to accomplish so much for the glory of God. When all the members are working together now that doesn't come easy. Just like the runner has some things to work against because we live in a fallen world that runners will have some aches and some paint but I have some confusion. It could have all kinds of obstacles that are going to try to keep him from running and in a pace that can win the race and in the church there a lot of obstacles that keep us from moving forward. We live in a fallen world. Nothing is going to be perfect. Sometimes we do think I want this to be a part of a church that is perfect and there are no perfect churches look just like there are no perfect families there no chart. Perfect churches like there are no perfect human bodies. They all fail. They all have their problems. They all have their shortcomings in their setbacks but there's only one body in God out of his wonder in his Majesty designed the church to be a body all working together connected together.
There is one body know this body is known in two ways.
Universal church. All believers across the world and local church.
Churches that meet together and gather like Calvary. In chapter 1, you seem both usages of the word church used in this way, neither should be excluded. One should not be elevated. Both are important to the kingdom of God in prescriptions one verse two to the church of God that is in car there was a local assembly that met together incarnate, just like Calvary is a local assembly that meets in Charlotte to the church of God that is in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus. That's how you become a part of the church you know Christ, if you know Christ in your part of the body of believers called to be saints, together with all those in every place call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours and so were connected to a much larger body of believers. That is all over the world, past, present and future, all of those who will become followers of Christ and God told us that he intends for us to be one now part of the oneness is the fact that we have one head.
Jesus the Christ. He identifies himself in verse 12 with the body. For just as the body is wanted as many members and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. Christ identifies with his body. He claims it fits his church. It's his body. There is one head he paid the ultimate price and so this person Jesus God himself laughed cabinet took own humanity to become the perfect God man, one whose name is above every name, the one he was far greater than all that have ever appeared on earth. He left heaven came to earth and he is the one who died in our place so that we could become members of his body, of his church and he alone, the head is the one that we will stand before one day give an account. It's not our spouse. It's not our pastor. It's not other members is not the world. It's the hidden Jesus, who will judge his body. The price he paid our justification. The patient sees shows in our sanctification and the promise he made it out future glorification all points to the fact he cares about his church. It's his body he bought it. He's building it in one day he's bringing it home to be with you where he is.
We should be compassionate toward those who don't like or really have been offended by organized religion. I don't necessarily want to say the church is organized religion but we should be compassionate with those who been hurt by church or a church member or a church leader. More times than not we the body had been guilty of not representing our head very well. There times we just have to apologize when people of been offended by the church that we should repent.
But that's not the point. Jesus is the point, and he's chosen the church and he works get in through the church and there's never a time that we can say if were right with a head I'm giving up the church's body. It would be an impossibility for one of his followers to be able to do that were interconnected to the head and they will not be severed from the parts of the body.
If you love him you will do all you can to be a part of the answer and not the problem.
When people complain or drive to have issues or been offended by church you will give yourself the building up the church, not neglecting it, and surely not tearing it down. That's what we do for the head of the church. But notice there's also one spirit, with one head one body with one head and makes very clear emphasis on this one spirit for in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, and he goes on to say, and all were made to drink of one spirit, the Holy Spirit, to an equal member of the Trinity.
Like the sun is like a father is.
He is at work growing the church, adding to the church is he moves to draw men and women. A Boys and Girls Club Christ. He makes Christ known in this world and then when they become followers of Christ there baptized into the body know this is not a water baptism that he speaking of this is a spirit baptism. The spirit baptizes us into the body of Christ. He comes in he indwells us he comes in he begins to lead us.
He seals us to the day of redemption.
We cannot save ourselves, and we cannot keep ourselves say I've always appreciated what one person said about being in the body of Christ in whether you can always a part of the body of Christ were not. If you could lose your salvation you would if you could lose your salvation you would but what your part of the body of Christ you are seeing old you are sealed unto the day of redemption. The Holy Spirit lives in you and a person who can just do whatever they want and not what the body of Christ.
They should examine themselves to see whether there in the faith. God loves the church he instituted the church. He continues to work through the church, even in all of its perfection and there's one baptism in the spirit and there's one fountain to keep drinking from. And that's the Holy Spirit to he not only indwells us, but he controls us. He continues to feel us each day. When you look back in chapter 12. Look in verse three. Therefore, I want you to understand that no one speaking in the spirit of God ever says Jesus is accursed and no one can say Jesus is Lord except in the Holy Spirit. The only way anybody can come to Christ about the Holy Spirit drawing that person to Christ is the only way someone can fully surrender their lives to Christ and even when you look down in verse 11.
All these these gifts that he just talked about in the first part of the chapter 12 all these are empowered by one and the same spirit who apportions to each one individually as he wills to everyone is in the body of Christ has a gift as opportunity is being called has been set aside to do the work of God. If you are not serving the body somewhere.
You are being disobedient. You are dishonoring the head.
And you're being disobedient to the head. The Holy Spirit is at work in your life and you will continue to drink from that fountain that has been given to you the spirit of God being filled and moved to build up the body of Christ. The church is one body now look on into verse 14. Chapter 12 was focus on this.
The second point today. The church is many parts for the body does not consist of one member but of many think with me.
This is not a gathering for a celebrity to come up and entertain you and give you this-inspirational speech or even a band or music that wows you because of all the wonderful talent I think.
Each week we hear some wonderful preaching. Each week we hear some wonderful music but the church gathering is not about one person or one group is not a celebrity type thing. This is an every member of the Holy Spirit gives gifts to each one individually. The body is made up of many there's equality in the body of Christ. Notice in verse 15. The body does rebel against the sum of your get a little bit older, you know how the body content to rebel and age.
But rebels and other kinds of ways to notice in verse 15 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. Think about these body parts per minute of foot and hand which one would you like to do without today. I don't think any of us want to make that choice.
Both are important. God God created the foot in the hand and we can't say nothing my hands more often. It's more important. Both are equal members of the body.
When I think about that runner that hurdler I think you need to do that job in the body of Christ wherever you flit in your part of the body once, not more important than the other. There's there's equality in both are important to accomplish the work where can you serve where can you begin to give yourself to the body of believers to serve the head. Christ sometimes when were looking at like the food in the hand were listening to ourselves. Well, I'm just not as important as this other person or I'm not getting to do this job. I'd rather do that instead of serving where we have opportunity that's that's rebellion against God when we're covetous or envious and work were unwilling to serve in the opportunities that are available to us. Sometimes we listen to others who might who might stroke our pride or may tell us things that we can't do as well. Sometimes this is the enemy you saying you're not important. Whereas we should be listening to God and God has purposefully given you the gifts and the opportunities that you have brought you to a body like Calvary so that you can be a part of the work of God in this world there many look a little further verse 16 at the should say because I'm not an eye season if the ear should say because I'm not. I'm not belong the body what would not. That would not make it any less a part of the body.
Think about those two body parts per minute in the ear me what you want to give up your side or your ability to hear none of us would choose either one week we will both in the body of Christ were intended to have bones and there's equality there. All the members are doing their part.
If everybody is participating in serving with the mind of Christ in the heart of Christ as the head of the body for 17 if the whole body were not aware of the sense of hearing. If the whole body were near where would be the sense of smell. When you look at those body parts. Can you imagine, I think there's a little bit of humor here in their busted up today and I was as one big I mean that I think Paul's try to make a point is not about one person is not about one gift.
It's about all of us serving wherever God allows us wherever we see needs and letting those gifts that we been empowered by the Spirit.
Come out to be used by him is not about if everybody could be and everybody could be in here it's serve as we have opportunity, and God gives us clear direction.
I think that's part of verse 18. Look at verse 18, but as it is, God arranged. Do you have enough faith to trust God. He's at work in your life, God arranged the members in the body. I love it when God brings new members to Calvary. We have a great new members classes going to meet just after the worship service in these first in these two middle rows learning more about what it means to be a member at Calvary because I know when God adds to the body. There's a reason every one of those members has a place of ministry.
Each one of them if they have been saved by the blood of Christ, and they been baptized by the spirit they received the spirit because they have been saved.
God has gifted them to serve in this body. But as it is, God arranged the members in the body.
If you're here at Calvary and you're a member here which I strongly encourage because it gives good accountability. It gives us even permission the minister when people become members of the body officially members if you remember, God has arranged the ball parts of the body as he brought you here.
He brought you here. What role does he have for you to be serving in the body and it's not even that it's about the body itself.
It's about the body, bringing attention to the head and make in the head. Christ known to the world about fulfilling the commission that he's given us make disciples of all the nations.
So, God arranged the members in the body. Each one of them, not some of them not only the most outgoing of them. Not the most talented of them.
God arranged the members in the body.
Each one of them as he chose. If all were single-member, where with the body be as it is there many parts get one body.
I love it when parents and children, serve the body together. Sometimes I see that whether it's people who are going to do outreach with its feed the homeless or whether it's to a festival or whether it's ministering in one of our life groups adult life groups or or children's group sort, or all kinds of ways that parents send their students and even some of the older kids can serve together. There many opportunities. Sometimes people look at a church, Calvary sizes of 20 people to take care of things with the larger church, the more ministry opportunities and when you are not stepping up and serving your hindering the work of God in the body. I had members of my body that didn't function did not operate I would have to compensate for that in some kind of way, and this body compensates sometimes because some of you aren't serving in different kinds of ways your hindering the work of God. If you're not letting the head send out the signal wake you up and call you to different roles. If you're not watching you're not listening.
If you're blinded by the world by the enemy and probably you're not being a part of the body in any kind of fashion parents. You not only have a chance to serve with your kids. But the model how important the church is do we have a generation is coming up the think the church isn't too important. Yes, you think about just a regular Sunday morning attendance.
I mean, that's kind of a bare minimum in the participation in the life of the church, not even if we talk about that want to talk about using gifts and abilities in time and resources were at Starbucks showing up on a Sunday morning, you think how often people show up on a given Sunday morning. It's not very consistent our pre-marriage class that will begin in January. One of the clips in a book that we use as a text says many Sundays. Do you think you as a couple should attend your local church. I think most couples are very very surprised when they see the suggested number of Sundays by the author. He says well if you have 52 I think count for a couple of vacations and maybe having to be away sickness that you should show up at least 48 of the 52 I don't know. I'm not giving you a number. I'm just saying if the body of Christ. The church is important to Christ. It should be important to us. It should be important us. It shouldn't be a matter of convenience should be a matter of commitment. Jesus, the head is shown his ultimate commitment to us as the body shaking the body. So it's ultimate come commitment to the head see the wisdom in the beauty of God were fighting not only against the plan of God were fighting against the wisdom of God and the beauty that God meant for the body to operate together for the world to see what real oneness looks like were blessed at Calvary and we have so many people who do serve. We can have an event were hundreds of people serve what what a great great testimony we can we can have an event where where probably good number of many countries and ethnicities are represented the oneness that God intended for Ms. body is so evident as people look out. I guess I'm asking all of us committed to the head.
The oneness that God intended it takes the many to make up the one sibling to give your couple quick conclusions from this. Do we see the church like God does well first conclusion when you see the church like God does love the church. He loves his children if you love God, he you will love what he loves.
The more you grow in your love for him. The more you will grow in love with your brothers and sisters, and it's interesting if you are not a lot of other people just read this middle chapter of all of this worship and church organizational stuff in chapter 11 through 14. Read chapter 13 it talks about the kind of love, a sure sign of our love for his church is our participation in the life of his church. Second conclusion when you see the church like God does.
You work toward unity one body.
God's heart is one this year should be to even before Jesus was crucified. Yet the high priestly prayer in John 17. Father, help them to be worn. Oneness should be our heart from man · complainer not disparage divide. If I'm God · praying I worked. Conclusion number three when you see the church like God does you participate in the life of the church there many parts you don't give up meeting together, because you know your family needs you that God has divinely appointed you to be a part of the body, you never give up on the church because it's his church, not the people's church, you find your place of ministry and service in make no excuses what a blessing when someone comes whose attending wants to be a member and said I'm not coming just to sit on the pew I'm coming to serve. Where can I serve again. It's not about Calvary. It's about the Christ about the head of the church. Conclusion number four. When you see the church like God does. You're getting ready for his return. Jesus will return for his bride. Do not mistake the length of time that he's waited to come back to hear his father go say go get your bride do not mistake that length of time the slowness this all about his patients that he wants as many people as possible to come and be a part of his body, his family to know him to be restored, that you might experience the joy in the purpose and the meaning that he originally intended.
We put people here on earth.
His body has to constantly be refocusing and reminding part of the Lord's supper that Rogan observed today communion is about that refocusing that reminding the meetings in court.
The term pretty sour when you read back in chapter 11 to your pleadings when you get together you people of Corinth. While I hate to hear this about Calvary from from the Lord's perspective, you meet you people you meet together you know what you're doing more damage than you're doing good you're doing more harm than you are doing to help because of the way that you're treating each other in the way that you're so man centered, as opposed to God centered. I have no doubt that their churches are meeting all across our nation today are doing more harm than doing good.
Let's never let that be said about Calvary church that we love Jesus so much that we can overlook an offense. We love Jesus so much that we can bring an extra layer but all were cold. We love Jesus so much that whatever I can do. However, I can serve where is there a need love Jesus that much that I will be ready when he comes back only his bride to be ready to be a part of serving his church. Our facilities are being greatly refreshed by the way, we take the Lord's supper be really careful not to spill anything this morning like having a new house or new car in our facilities have been greatly refreshed, but you know what we need more than facilities. Refreshment we need soul refreshment this morning we turn again to Christ, and love you more. We say God what you love. Our love God, but you made our way renewing me if there sin in your life, get it out.
The Lord's supper as that term first creek is Chapter 11 let a man examine himself before he participates in taking the bread and drinking the juice examine yourself. Have you had you honor Christ with your life. Have you honor Christ with your gifts and your abilities and building up his church of being a part of the body of Christ.
If not, make it right. Don't take the Lord's supper in an unworthy manner parents even as we get ready to sing this this next song if you if you weren't mindful today would be taken. The Lord's supper communion.
Maybe it's a time for you to pull one of your kids aside in a several conversation while were singing here to make sure they're ready because we don't want anybody taken the Lord's supper is not yet received Jesus Christ. This is a testament to the blood that he shared the body that was broken, don't take it an unworthy manner. If your life's not right with God do not want to make it right right now. Don't take the supper. This is a time of refreshment and renewal and return back to what God has originally called us to. Are you ready to see the church like God does spray father, we thank you for this privilege of being able to open up your work this morning. We prayed that as we get ready to take your supper.
As we get ready to do what you've instructed us to do what you've commanded us to do that should help our hearts to be right that would love you will, that would love the people you put around us. Well father if there any grudges any bitterness that's going on in people's hearts right now. Would you bring strong conviction. I pray that you will prepare our hearts so that we can celebrate this supper in a way that honors you and lifts up what you've done for us, proclaims the grace of God in his death and his resurrection in Jesus name we pray.