THE BODY OF CHRIST PART 2
When looking at the body of Christ or Christ’s body, we are looking at the church, which is the body of Christ. I will be comparing the relationship of the church in the following ways: the church’s mission and its purpose, the church’s relationship to Jesus Christ, church leadership and the authority in the body, the church’s relationship to the Christian and Missionary Alliance, and the relationship between the church’s members.
Genesis 12:3 says, “I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” (NKJV). Missionary awareness starts with God to His creation. God said that the families on earth shall be blessed through Abraham, and Abraham was sent out by God. Jesus tells us to, “Go.”
Sometimes we do not know why or when the blessings will come or if we will see them or not. (Matthew 13:17) “for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it” (NKJV). We just need to trust and obey because there is no other way. We have so many Biblical examples with positive outcomes. Abraham did not see the fulfillment of all that God promised him, but he still went when he was sent. God told him to go to the land of Moriah and offer his only son, Isaac, as a sacrifice; he went because he believed and trusted in God. Abraham did not know that one day we could look back at his testimony and see a portrait of Jesus. We just need to go because we do not know what part of our own lives will be an example of missionary work for God and who it will affect now or in the future.
Another example is given to us in Philippians 2:5-12, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bond servant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (NKJV).
Jesus left Heaven being in the form of God and came down to earth in the form of mankind to be a bond servant. Jesus, God the Son, came down to earth to be obedient to the will of the Father even unto the cruelest death of the cross. He humbled Himself. If Jesus can leave the splendor of heaven how can we not go out in to this world and be a witness for Him? We are mere men; He is God and became a bond servant. We did not come from heaven nor did we transform from deity to humanity. Jesus took a huge leap from being the creator to becoming like the created to bring forth the Gospel. For us it is just a side step into our back yard, the world, to bring the Gospel message to others. So, how is it that we cannot go out when Jesus made Himself of no reputation to go out and become a bond servant to God for us? Jesus became the ultimate missionary when He was sent from Heaven to earth so He could show us the way to eternal life.
As the church, we need to engage in the mission in which God the Father sent His only begotten Son to do. We need to go out and to teach all things which He has commanded us to do through His word. The success of the Gospel is in your hands and mine. Christ is counting on us as ambassadors and the ministers of reconciliation to go forth and fulfill the Great Commission (2 Corinthians 5:17-21; Matthew 28:18-20). The Church has to have a degree of missions or it will die! If we are the body of Christ, what are our hands doing? What are our feet doing? What is our mouth saying? Are they engaged in the redemptive work of our Lord and Saviour? Jesus went out, we need to go as He commanded. I believe it is important to structure a ministry to continue the redemptive work of Jesus Christ because without a perpetual ministry which crosses generations, the gospel message will cease to exist. We can see the decline of churches overseas as well as here in America. I believe that after the baby boomer generation passes, the church buildings in America will be empty. The baby boomers need to go out and spread the gospel message across the new generations of today if the churches in America are to remain a functioning part of the body of Christ. This needs to be done through an organized Church structure. The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) has a hub in Colorado which stretches around the world. It has solid doctrine and a missionary heart to go forth and usher in the coming King, Jesus Christ, to all nations. We need to ensure we have a strategy to reach all generation to keep the gospel moving forward so we can proclaim the salvation of Jesus our Saviour to preceding generations and those to come.
THE BODY OF CHRIST PART 2