Have you ever been to a circus or county fair? I’m talking about the old-fashioned kind with cotton candy, ring toss games, the game to test how strong you are (ever ring the bell?), and, of course, THE FREAK SHOW!
Sometimes there’s a bearded woman, a man with 6 toes on each foot, or someone with 3 ears. I saw a guy once who was 8 foot 2 inches tall, back when I was about 4 foot.
Of course the really strange and freaky people can’t be seen unless you pay the extra 50 cents to peek behind the curtain. You know, the guy with only one eye stuck in the middle of his forehead, or something like that.
But have you ever seen a guy without a body? Just a head; nothing else. I realize it’s kind of freaky to think about, unless you’re a Christian in today’s church.
Now why did I go and say something like that?
Ask any “Christian” if they believe Jesus is able to do ANYTHING and EVERYTHING and you’ll probably hear a hearty “AMEN!” Ask them how can He do what He does and you’ll hear, “because He is God.” Follow up with “what is the body of Christ”, and you’ll hear a three point sermon about the church of Jesus Christ.
Yes, the Church is the Body of Christ. Jesus is the Head, the church is the body that belongs to the head.
Can I say something without making someone mad? Many believers have their theology correct; it’s straight in their mind: Jesus is the Head, the Church is the Body. But in practice, they treat Jesus like He belongs in a freak show, billed as the “Bodiless Man.” I say, “in practice”, because they distance themselves from the work of God. It’s either someone else’s job, or it’s God’s. It sure can’t be theirs! In real life the body and the head are supposed to be connected! The head gives the instructions, the body carries them out. The body lives to accomplish the will of the head, and the head makes decisions that will help the whole body.
“And the disciples went everywhere and preached, and the Lord worked through them, confirming what they said by many miraculous signs.” (Mark 16:20 NLT)
Notice The Lord worked THROUGH them. He didn’t work in place of them, nor did He tell them to go out on their own. The Head and the Body worked together!
I would venture to say a lot of prayers aren’t answered because believers don’t realize their responsibility as a body. Over and over the scriptures admonish us to care for one another, pray for one another, give to the one who has a need; but we want to leave it all up to the Head.
Paul wrote a lot about this subject; here’s a little example from 1 Corinthians.
“The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit. Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything? But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. How strange a body would be if it had only one part! Yes, there are many parts, but only one body. The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.” In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary.” (1 Corinthians 12:12-22 NLT)
Notice, “the head can’t say to the feet…”. And why would He want to? Jesus NEEDS His Body to act like it’s connected! Remember Jesus said, “Apart from Me you can do NOTHING”. (John 15)
Just imagine what could happen if we began to treat this Christianity thing like it really matters. If we’d find out from the Head what His plans and purposes are. If we’d acknowledge Him in all our ways and let Him direct our paths.
Well, we’d find ourselves growing up spiritually, increasing in wisdom and understanding, and being used by The Lord to do incredible things!
People might start wondering about our “strange ways”, and maybe even think we belong in the freak show.
That’s alright; at least the Head won’t be alone. Jesus said, “…that where I am, they may be also.” John 17
“This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” (Ephesians 4:13-16 NLT)