Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell together in unity!
2 It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Coming down upon the beard,
Even Aaron’s beard,
Coming down upon the edge of his robes.
3 It is like the dew of Hermon
Coming down upon the mountains of Zion;
For there the LORD commanded the blessing—life forever.
God’s blessing comes as we learn to dwell together. It is mutually beneficial when we learn how to encourage, support, and love one another. Healthy interpersonal relationships develop as we grow in grace and maturity. Where are the body builders of the church? Where are our personal trainers? It is the personal responsibility of five-fold ministers to build up the body, perfect the saints, and to guide it from infancy to maturity. It is in maturity and unity that we have the hope of attaining perfection and fulfilling our call.
From the parishioner to the pastor,
From the infant to the spiritually mature,
From the home group to the mega church….
Each individual member of the body is important,
Harmony and unity of the body of Christ are crucial.
Why is unity so important? Being of one mind and one spirit makes us a powerful force to be reckoned with; but disharmony cripples the flow of the church’s spiritual power. Each member is significant to the healthy functioning of the church. What does a healthy church body look like and how do we subscribe to better health?
“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.” John 17:22-23
So that we may be “perfected” in unity. While one may argue that there is none perfect but Jesus Christ, we find that the word “perfected” from this text in the original Greek means to be made complete or finished. Perfection, or the completion of the body is accomplished through unity.
What differentiates a healthy church body from an unhealthy one? Some may remember a song made popular years ago by a Christian singing group, Jars of Clay. The song, “They Will Know We Are Christians By Our Love, was originally written by Catholic priest, Peter Scholtes in 1968. Of course, the song is based upon the scripture found in John 13:34-35:
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Our relationships and attitudes play key roles in the health and effective functioning of the body of Christ; so do maturation and the proper positioning of its members. Have you ever had a joint out of place? It hurts! The body of Christ hurts too when one of its members is out of place or tries to function in a role they were not created to perform. That is why it is crucial that pastors and other five-fold ministry leaders understand the basic anatomy and physiology of a healthy church body.
What do anatomy and physiology have to do with the church body? Spiritual anatomy refers to the proper placement of the church members within the framework of the local body. We would not place the choir director in the maintenance dept. unless they had the gifts and talents to fulfill both positions. Likewise, we would probably not place the tone-deaf Sunday School teacher in the choir. The gifts, talents, calling, and purpose of the individual church members will determine the roles they can effectively play within the local church.Physiology refers to the spiritual laws that cause the individual members to work effectively together, or not work together. It is the role of five-fold ministry leaders to mentor, educate, and position the members of the body in proper alignment with God’s intentions.
Excerpt from my newest book project “Unity, The Growth Hormone of the Church. ” How to Have Healthy Personal Relationships with God and One Another that EMPOWER the Church. Blessings, Dr. Kathy J. Smith