The Church as the Body: Go and serve

Paul spoke of the Church as the body of Christ. It only functions properly when each member is doing their part (Ephesians 4:11-16). And, believe it or not, we each have a part.

My function, and your function will not be the same. And, guess what, that is okay. Our function is wrapped up in our spiritual gifts. There are many gifts because there are many parts of the body (1 Corinthians 12:14-18).

Knowing what our gifts are enables us to serve in ways that engage us and energize us. If we don’t know our gifts, or we don’t serve in our gifts, we get burnt out and frustrated.

Since we are talking about a body, who is that body meant to serve? Is it meant for the lost or for those other body parts? I believe Scripture shows it is for building up the body of Christ. Our gifts are meant to serve the other body parts.

Ephesians 4:12-13 says, “for equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.”

We see a similar exhortation in Romans 12:4-9 when Paul is speaking of the gifts and their use in the body. Now, that does not mean that we cannot function outside of the body. It simply means the best intention is for use in the body of Christ. The truth is, Scripture has given us clear instruction on how to live in the world. We all have been commanded to live in a way that points others to Jesus. We all have been given the command to share Jesus and His love to those we come in contact with.

When we function properly within the body, the outside world, the lost, will be drawn to the body. That is why Paul also spends such a great amount of time speaking about love (1 Corinthians 13-14). And, Jesus told His disciples that love for one another is how the world would know we belong to Him (John 13:34-35). Let’s be honest, the world could use more love towards one another!

So, I leave you with an encouragement. Go and serve your local church body. If you are unsure of what your gifts are, find out! Love and serve. They go together. No one is without gifts and every gift is given so it may be used.