Thursday, December 10, 2009

Good Reminder

Our church is reading a series of verses together now leading up through Christmas; Tuesday's reading was from Ephesians 4:11-13 -

"It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ."

When you simply break down these three verses you arrive at some often missed or overlooked Spiritual Truths.

Truth #1: the Goal is unity!  While this section of Scripture starts with describing our differences; some as apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, the point is what follows that list - Unity.  Unity in Faith, Unity in Knowledge of Jesus Christ, Unity in Maturity, which results in "attaining the fullness of Christ."  Put simply, to "be like Him."

Truth #2: the reason for the gifts - "to prepare God's people for works of service."  The purpose of the gifts are to help equip and prepare God's flock for service.  To be a Christian is to be a servant.  Jesus modeled this for us when he washed his disciples feast, making it clear once and for all - He set the example for us of a life of service.  Good works that result in thankfulness towards God.  Paul alludes to this in 2 Corinthians 9:11 - "You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God."

"So what?" you might ask...what's the point?  The point is this - as people, humans, our natural tendancy is to focus inward.  Unless we make a conscience choice to think and live outwardly, putting others first in a life of service, we will naturally fall back to our default mindset...a self-centered one.  And yet, God gives us gifts so we can serve others.  This begs the question, what kind of life are you I living?  Strive to use your gift for works of service.

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