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“For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:12).
Since the beginning of the church, people have sought to create division within it. People have divided over doctrine, worship style, music, sermons, clergy, ministry, authority, carpet color, social issues, politics, etc. etc. etc.
I am not going to talk about the divisions among the body of Jesus this week. I am not going to talk about the similarities within the body of Jesus this week. I am not going to talk about overcoming differences in order to be united in the Body of Jesus this week.
Where did we get the idea that we have to be identical to each other in order to worship and work with each other? Where did we get the idea that if someone follows Jesus differently from me, that I cannot be a part of the same body of Jesus that he or she is? Paul tells us that we are different members, but one body. If it was good enough for Paul, I think it is still good enough for the body of Jesus today!
1 Corinthians 12 tells us that we have different gifts, used in different ways, for different purposes, but we are still one body. Is that not great? I am immensely glad that everyone is not just like me. (There is only room for one perfect person in Vandalia, and I do not want any competition.) We all have different jobs within the body of Jesus. We all need to fulfill our purpose within the body of Jesus for the body to do the work of Jesus. Did you get that? Do your job so the body (church) can do its job! The church has become ineffective in the world today because we spend so much time being either jealous of one another or trying to change one another within the body of Jesus to be more like us.
I have a ground-breaking idea for the body of Jesus today. Let us follow Jesus into the work he has called us to, and help others do the same.
The body of Jesus needs to reach the hearts, minds and souls of the world. If we begin to work together as a united body of different parts, what will the world think? If we, the followers of Jesus in Vandalia, begin using the gifts each of us has individually to jointly impact the community of Vandalia, how would Vandalia change? Do you want to find out?
I want to invite the followers of Jesus in Vandalia to a meeting on Sunday night, July 17, at 7:30 p.m. at Vandalia First Baptist Church to discuss how the body of Jesus would impact the Vandalia community.
If you want to use your spiritual gifts to reach Vandalia with the message of Jesus, join us on July 17.