A Certain Kind: Discipleship Essentials
Serving Christ within the Church
1 Corinthians 12:12-27
The church is Christ’s intention; it needs to be ours. (Matt. 16:18)
“There is no discipleship without the church; there is no church without discipleship.” (E. Chan)
“Those who cherish the gospel, must also cherish the church, for the church is the implication of the gospel—the practical outcome of the Great Commission.” (Vanhoozer, Biblical Authority After Babel, 2016)
What is the CHURCH and what is my place in it? Three earthy illustrations picture how God is related to the Church (of others, building, flock, branches)
- The church is not the bricks and mortar of a religion, but rather the “social form” of people who have received Christ as their Lord and Saviour.
- The church is the “public domain” where God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven.
THE CHURCH IS THE BODY OF CHRIST
- The church is one body with many parts (1 Cor. 12:12)—baptized by one Spirit and given one Spirit to drink.
- The church is the “theatre of the gospel” showing off reconciliation with each other because we are already reconciled to God.
THE CHURCH IS THE HOUSEHOLD OF GOD
The royal priesthood of all believers community.
- End purpose of salvation (1 Pet. 2:9)
- Consecrated through baptism
- Not making peace with the world, but bearing witness to peace with God made possible in Christ—witnesses to Jesus’ finished work.
Where the gospel is not just a plan for my life, but is brought to bear on all of creation—implications for relatedness are staggering and must find fullest expression in the church.
- God as manager; Jesus is the Master (1 Tim 3:5)
- Membership of priest/ kings (1 Pet. 2:5; Rev. 1:6)
- Structure—God’s stewards/ house managers (1 Tim. 3:5) overseeing the citizenry of heaven (Titus 1:5-7)
- Keys to the kingdom—household security—issuing or revoking the “passports”
THE CHURCH IS THE BRIDE OF CHRIST
- How much Christ loves his church (Eph. 5:2, 25)
- How exalted is the church in position ( Jn. 14:1-3; 1 Thes. 4:16-17; Rev. 19:7; 21:9)
Jesus’ body, house, and bride - Selah- think on these things.