From the Pen of Paul: What Is the Church?

For your personal time of study or for use in discussion with others.

My thoughts:

  • In Ephesians 1:22-23, Paul writes, “And God placed all things under [Jesus’] feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way” (NIV). As a Christian, Paul is teaching me that I’m a part of the body of Jesus! When I think about my place among other Christians in my church family, I know that I am the part of the body that ______________ . I enjoy that and, thanks to God, I’m good at it. One way I want to be a more effective member of the body is to ______________ .
  • 1 Corinthians 11 describes a problem in the church in Corinth. Their time of communion or the Lord’s Supper had turned into a rowdy potluck (verses 17-34). I’m appalled at what was happening, but I’m also convicted. When I participate in communion on Sundays, I don’t have a temptation to eat before someone else, but I am tempted to ______________ . What comes from Pau’s pen reminds me that I’ve forgotten what I must remember: Jesus. To help me keep Jesus and others first during communion, I will start ______________ .

My words and actions:

Being a part of the church is more than an affiliation. Instead, you are intimately linked with the Son of God himself. It is no longer you alone, but you are someone who wears his name, and you are attached to all others who wear his name. What I do or say reflects Jesus – for good or bad. My mouth becomes his, and my hands become his. Aware of that, I understand that he has not left this place. Jesus is still present. May he continue to work in this world through me.

My prayer;

Jesus, thank you for letting me be such a huge part of what you are doing in the world! You continually remind me of the price you paid so that I can wear your name and live out your message. In taking the bread and the contents of that little cup each week, I know that the price you paid for me was costly. Please use my own life however you want. Move my hands, feet, and lips how you wish. Without you, well, without you I am not at all what I am when I’m with you. Amen.

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