The ChurchBro. David Chancellor
10/25/2009 11:00 AM
And the children of Israel departed thence at that time, every man to his tribe and to his family, and they went out from thence every man to his inheritance. In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
There was a King, but the people weren’t following him. God intended to be their king, but they didn’t do a good job of following him. The people went and did their own thing. People are living that way today. Our relationship with God is between us and him, but we affect other people by things we do. Accountability is necessary. God gave us his word to help us understand how he looks at things.
The people mentioned here made up their own rules as they went. God wants us to give heed to his Word and commandments. He wants to be King over us.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
When people get saved, God adds them to the church. It isn’t just to a universal body of people. He puts us in the church because we need interaction with others of God’s people. We need the church. We need instruction and teaching. Being with others of God’s people allows us to be a benefit to each other. The church doesn’t save us, but there are benefits from getting together with God’s people. Being with the church brings accountability.
Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the vail, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water, Let us hold fast the profession of our faith, without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works; Not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
It isn’t just about our individual interactions with God. It’s also about our interactions with his people. We are to encourage each other in things that are right. We need to be encouraged to do the things that are right and to grow in love. Meeting together can help us to get perspective. Others can help us to spot the snares of the devil. "And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works." We’re here to help each other out and to hold each other accountable. Encourage each other to stay true for God. We don’t want to quit and discourage others. God wants us to be strengthened and built up by our interactions together.
1 Corinthians 12:13-27
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. For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? 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? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body. 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. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary; 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. For our comely parts have no need; but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked; That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.
We’ve all been baptized into one body. It’s a blending of many cultures and personalities into one body to be a blessing and benefit to each other and ourselves. Be part of the body where God puts you. Be who you are and contribute what you can as you. We can’t say we have to be a certain part to be part of the body, but neither can we tell someone else they aren’t part because they aren’t us. Seek to contribute to it and have accountability to the body. We all have something to add and we can all receive from it. God will put us all together so that none of us will lack. We need the increase that comes from associating with others that walk with God.
For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord; whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.
Our lives touch other people. We need to be witnesses. Live in such a way that your life is a witness. God wants us to be witnesses to people. He wants us to interact with others. Gather with other believers and be a blessing to them. God designed for us to meet with other saints and to encourage each other. Consider your life. Contribute to the body so that it will increase and grow … spiritually. Growth is about the increase we get in our souls, and about souls being saved and increasing spiritually. "For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself." It’s God’s plan that we be added to the body of saved people so that we can live for him here.