Body Building

man-with-dumbell.JPGFor years a physical fitness craze has swept across our nation. Today, you can purchase, for a small sum, a little plastic gadget that is guaranteed to give you a “tonier tummy”. Or, you can be aerobicized by the latest cross-country ski simulator. You can still join Richard Simmons, who turns 58 today, in his “Sweatin’ With the Oldies” exercise videos, if that is your cup of tea. Everyone has heard the news—fitness pays! There are great benefits in a well-thought-out and properly executed plan for body building.

Did you realize that God wants every Christian to be in the body building business? Building up the body of Christ, the church, should be a priority in our lives! Consider that Ephesians 4:16 says that the whole body is joined and held together by every supporting ligament and it grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Collectively, members of the body of Christ enjoy the benefit of relationships which help us grow in the Lord. Individually, each member has the responsibility to function as an industrious builder in God’s spiritual house, being careful how he builds (1 Corinthians 3:10b). Because, we are all in the body building business, we must give careful attention to becoming more effective builders. Where does this begin?

First, Christ’s kingdom is built on the rock solid foundation of Jesus Christ, Himself (1 Corinthians 3:11). There is no other suitable footing. There are so many things of human origin that get in the way. These seem to confuse the issue and create an unstable basis upon which to build. Our challenge is to both hear and heed the kingdom-call of Jesus, seeking only to be a part of what He is doing in the world.

Next, Paul indicates that the body building process involves both planting and watering the seed, that is, God’s Word (1 Corinthians 3:6). Inherent in the preceding is both message and method. The seed needs to be sown in human hearts. We must be truly convicted that the Word of God, when implanted in human hearts, can save (James 1:21). Even as Paul was willing to become all things to all men that he might by all possible means save some (1Corinthians 9:22), we must also be committed to engaging in every permissible method to broadcast this message to the world.

Finally, we must realize that God has designed the church to work together as an interdependent unit. Members of Christ’s body aren’t to have a “maverick mentality.” We don’t “go it alone!” Romans 12:5 states, “In Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” God’s plan is for us to function as a body, working together as a living organism to bring about spiritual growth. Yes. The body builds itself up in love as each part does its work! We who are members of the Lord’s church all need one another! There is a sense in which the the relationships we share in the Lord can be summarized as “one anothering”. Mark Wilson has written an excellent post on his blog about this. You can read it by clicking here. Because each member has been blessed by God with special talents and abilities, every member has a vital role in the growth of the body of Christ.

Clearly, God has given us a well-thought-out plan for building the body of Christ. The question for every generation to answer is how well we will execute this plan.

© Bill Williams

July 12, 2006

About a fellow sojourner

a sojourner in life, trying to follow in the steps of Jesus.
This entry was posted in Bible Study, Blogroll, Christian Living, Christianity, Church, Leadership, Life. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Body Building

  1. Superb post. This is a really crucial issue in the church – drawing closer to one another and building each other up.

    Bless you Bill,
    Mark.

  2. Jennifer says:

    Great post, Bill. I have been really “plugged in” to a local church through my Sunday School class for about three years now. I feel like I am a part of a family, and they feel the same way. When I have a problem, I know I can count on them to help me, and that is a great feeling. I am also amazed at how different we all are–our giftings are totally different–and yet we work together so well. It is definitely a God thing. I realize that I have been blessed tremendously to have this kind of “family” because I know others who are yearning for it.

    Thank you for helping me to not take them for granted.

    His,
    Jennifer

  3. Jennifer says:

    Here is a great article on Crosswalk about this issue:

    http://www.crosswalk.com/faith/1406893.html

  4. Nancy says:

    Great post. We are finally able to be in a local church, a SOUTHERN local church… where people know you. And I keep forgetting to go to church on Sunday nights and Wednesday — after liviing in NY and Philly where church is a Sunday morning deal. 🙂 I feel so silly forgetting.

  5. Greg England says:

    Bill: I’m a bit offended that you would put that picture of me working out without asking my permission!
    Yes, body life is so important to our spiritual growth … excercising our giftedness … and, at times, even survival. I’m trying to get my children to understand the importance of the family of God in which we have been placed. I don’t think they see it yet in spite of the fact they both experienced the benefits of it time and again growing up. It’s a different generation.

  6. Jennifer says:

    Greg.

    In regards to your pic…LOL! Thanks for making me laugh!

    His,
    Jennifer

  7. – Thanks for the link, Jennifer!

    – I know just what you are talking about, Nancy! If you are able to attend on Sunday nights and Wednesday, you’ll really some folks’ lives!

    – Sorry, Greg. Should have cleared that one with you first! Next time, for sure. OK?

    – Let each of us remember 1 Corinthians 12:27, “Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.”

  8. Lanette says:

    I woke up this morning with a song in my mind from our Sunday School program about “God’s in the Body Building Business”. Since I am in charge of Evangelism for our church this year, I went to the web for bulletin board ideas to build around the theme of “Buidling up the Body of Christ” and found your wonderful blog. I would like to use the three step approach you listed in this blog of 1. Build on the rock solid foundation of Jesus
    2. Planting and caring for the seeds
    3. “Don’t go it alone” — function as a body.
    I notice your write up is copy righted and did not want to do anything to violate the copyright… is it acceptable to work with these steps I gleaned from your blog?

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