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Sat, Mar 02 2013 - 05:42 PM

326 DISCERNING THE BODY.

1Corinthians
12:20 But now are they many members, yet but one body.

I have
heard many dissenting voices condemn God’s church by criticizing the scriptural
incorrectness of various organizations, criticizing the structure of various
organizations or criticizing the actions of various organizations. I have
phrased that sentence like that because people have a tendency to try to
associate one or another organization as ‘God’s church’.

This is
derived from pride as ‘we are God’s church because we say or do things after
certain scriptures or historical manifestos’ or certain scriptures say one
thing or another and we believe we are correct when we interpret it our way.
Then there are those who have somehow invented or historically created another
book which is correct because, they say, the Bible has been tampered with by
men and is incorrect.

The
‘we’re right and you’re wrong’ attitude is trying to take over the religious
thinking of the world just as it has taken over every other aspect of society.
Don’t believe me? Look at Ford and GM, Coke and Pepsi, Apple and Microsoft, any
team sports; Toronto vs. Canadians. How about White men and Black men, men and
women, your school and another school, your city and another city, your country
and another country or your political party and another political party?

You
see? Division is division no matter how pious or self-righteous you think your
cause is.

Bullies
gather together in gangs, social societies gather together in ‘clicks’, like
minded groups gather together in clubs and fraternities and community standing
gathers together in lifestyles. Like causes or circumstances gather together
with those who think, talk and act like them so, when you openly differ from
one part of God’s church, you associate with other factions who oppose God’s
church.

You can
think you’re right all you want to but God sees the truth and will judge you on
your obedience to Him not on what you think you should be doing.    

2Corinthians
10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself
against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the
obedience of Christ;

Now
that is out of the way, let’s look at the church and see what people are
speaking against.

Organized
religion never was part of God’s plan but it is a way to organize large groups
of people and keep them involved; which is a good thing. Most people will have
a great desire to be alone when they are attacked or are hurting which only
compounds their problem. By gathering together we can be aware of the needy and
help one another, even if we turn out to be the needy.

Who we
gather with is very important because we are frail human beings and God has put
the strength in the church. Even in the strong times and with a powerful group,
Jesus sent His disciples out by twos.

Mark
6:7 And he called unto him the twelve, and began to send them forth by
two and two; and gave them power over unclean spirits;

Every
part of God’s church has a purpose and is strong in one or more areas. I know
of one organization that is strong on scripture knowledge, another that is very
active and powerful in the spirit world and another that is very faithful in
walking with the Lord. Just because a group meets on Sunday instead of the Sabbath,
does not mean they are not Christians.

Also,
church officiating does not make it God’s church. Any organization must have
some ruling members with positions of expertise to run smoothly. Church
officials, elders, ushers, secretaries and so on are also not ‘the church’.
They are merely people doing a job to make things run smoothly in their
organization. Any plan or idea they come up with, may or may not be a good plan
but it will keep everyone in the know about the group and should encourage
unity; which is another good thing.

All
religions, denominations, peoples, groups or any gatherings get together for a
purpose which may or may not be Godly in nature. This is not a bad thing
because every person is an individual and may be called to worship, assemble or
praise in a manner that could be different than others.

So,
just where is God’s church and how do we find it? God’s church is the hungry
soul who is sitting in the group, listening and learning from those words that
God sends them. Those individuals, who with an open heart and a willing mind,
will obey God’s servants even when they may be mistaken, just so they can serve
the God they love in their hearts. That’s right; those old, poor and desperate
people sitting in the pews; struggling to find the passage of scripture the
speaker wants them to look up, the ones who sing loudly off key or mumble the
wrong words to a song by mistake, the ones who will try, just because they love
God, and are willing to make mistakes because their love of God makes it worth
the effort; the simple, the childlike, the innocent lambs whom Jesus has
accepted.

That’s
God’s church and woe to the person who will hurt them; either to their face or
behind their backs.

Matthew
18:6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it
were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that
he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

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Comments
revsuz - 6 years ago

This is a very good word, Stephen. Unity and peace are two very important things in the body of Christ. Along with love, they bring harmony. I enjoyed reading this.