I Corinthians 12

The Body of Christ

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I Corinthians 12:12 (KJV) For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.

13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

14 For the body is not one member, but many.

15 If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?

16 And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?

17 If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?

18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.

19 And if they were all one member, where were the body?

20 But now are they many members, yet but one body.

21 And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.

22 Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:

23 And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness.

24 For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked.

25 That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.

26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.

27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.

 

In the human body, each part of the body operates to bring health to the rest of the body.

The heart pushes blood to circulate to bring nourishment and oxygen to the rest of the body.

The lungs operate to draw in oxygen that will be transported to the rest of the body because of the action of heart to circulate blood.

The little toe would be interested in the health of the heart, because it is only through the health of the heart that it can get the oxygen and nutrients it needs.

Paul likens the body of Christ to the human body.  The body parts recognize, if that sentient verb can be used to make a point, that it can only operate as it is supposed to operate.  A heart will always operate as the heart.  The liver will always operate as the liver.  And so forth….

The body works harmoniously.  When it does not, it is called  dis-ease, with the dis- prefix meaning “not”, it means not-ease.  The body is not at rest when it is ill.

Among mankind, with free will, there can be an attempt to try to be some other part of the body.  There can be an attempt to take the place of another part of the body.

In a healthy body, when a cell gets out of line and begins to grow abnormally, that is called cancer.  It is not a good thing for the cell, or the body.

 

 


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Finding Your Place Within the Body of Christ

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Jesus prayed:

John 17:21  that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that you sent me.

 

The importance of oneness was brought out in the book of Genesis.

Genesis 11:1 (KJV) And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.

2 And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there.

3 And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter.

4 And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

5 And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded.

6 And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

7 Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.

8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.

9 Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the Lord scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.

 

St. Paul likens the Christian church to a body where each part of the body has a particular function.

I Corinthians 12:14   For the body is not one member, but many. 15 If the foot would say, “Because I’m not the hand, I’m not part of the body,” it is not therefore not part of the body. 16 If the ear would say, “Because I’m not the eye, I’m not part of the body,” it’s not therefore not part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the smelling be? 18 But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body, just as he desired. 19 If they were all one member, where would the body be? 20 But now they are many members, but one body. 21 The eye can’t tell the hand, “I have no need for you,” or again the head to the feet, “I have no need for you.” 22 No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. 23 Those parts of the body which we think to be less honorable, on those we bestow more abundant honor; and our unpresentable parts have more abundant propriety; 24 whereas our presentable parts have no such need. But God composed the body together, giving more abundant honor to the inferior part, 25 that there should be no division in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. 26 When one member suffers, all the members suffer with it. When one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.

27 Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.

 

In science we learn that for anything to happen within the human body, digestion, movement of muscles, growth, anything, a number of factors are involved.  For example, in digestion there are enzymes.  There are also co-enzymes which do not do the job of the enzymes, but are necessary for the enzymes to work.  And so it goes.  Multiple comparisons could be made.

Perhaps the thinking of the world has seeped into the body of Christ.  Some people seek to have the most “likes” on Facebook.  American Idol  pushes the idea that unless you are the “one” winner, that you are the loser.

All that really is not in line with the thinking of the body of Christ.

There are those with the gift of administration.  They should be leading in whatever capacity their gifts take them.  There are those with the gift of helps.    They should be helping in whatever capacity their gifts permit them to help.

If the body of Christ is ever to be one and have the power that is promised in oneness, there has to be a unity that comes from all members finding their place in the body, not trying to take the place of another, but finding their exact place and functioning there.

In reality, in a physical body, a liver cannot do the work of the kidney.  The tongue can’t do the work of the hand.  The eye can’t do the work of the ear or foot.  It would be foolish to even try.

A liver is best being a liver.  An eye is best being an eye.  A hand is best being a hand.  An ear is best being an ear.

When each part is fitly joined together, that is the place of increase.

Ephesians 4:16   from whom all the body, being fitted and knit together through that which every joint supplies, according to the working in measure of each individual part, makes the body increase to the building up of itself in love.


A blog post can only introduce a topic, but not cover it in depth. For more study on various topics, click here for links to Christian bookstores and other Christian sites.

The link above will take you to links to sites that teach on faith, prayer, confession, healing and more. They have church services, podcasts, bookstores, and further resources and teaching.
Continue Reading