One of, if not probably the most popular verses in the Holy Bible is John 3: 16. It says “For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him, shall not perish, but have everlasting life”. This great sacrifice was fueled by the father’s unending love, not just for the human race, but for creation at large which was in absolute jeopardy and in dire need for salvation. (Rom. 8: 19)
Jesus walked the surface of this earth for a time span of thirty-three and half years, after which he died on the cross so that man could be reconciled to his God, having being forgiven, cleansed and made righteous before God courtesy of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross of Calvary. (Rom. 5 10)
Before he ascended to heaven, he commissioned them saying, “all power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, and of the Son, and of the Holy ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen. ” (Matt. 28:18-20)
Having multiplied himself in them as was initially premeditated in words in John 12:24, “………except a corn of wheat fall to the ground and die, it abideth alone………”. An instruction was mete out in Acts 1:8, to wait for the supplement of power for the assignment. Further fulfillment by the infilling of the holy ghost of the apostles and all that were with them on the day of Pentecost, Acts 2:1 commensurately followed.
This was the take off of the dispensation of the Holy Spirit, the third person in the Trinity and it was the birth of the church, the Ecclesia, it was the beginning of the third day.
While Jesus still walked this earth, he at one time prayed to his father, who became our father also and said, “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I am come to thee. Holy father, keep through thine own name; those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are” John 17:11.
Casting our minds back, we may recall the sending of the twelve and the seventy in pairs, with the mandate to cast out devils, heal the sick and preach that the kingdom of God is at hand in Luke 9:12 and 10:1- 9 respectively. This seems to be the mandate of the church, and also to establish the statutes of God and ensure that the knowledge of the glory of God takes over the earth like water covers the sea.
It is said, that a three cord stroke cannot be easily broken, and that Unity is Strength. Therefore, in essence, the importance of unity cannot be overemphasized, neither can it be neglected.
If the three persons in the Godhead are united, this, without mixing words means unity is nonnegotiable for any group persons intending to achieve anything substantial or tangible.
Joel 2:2-11 gave us a graphic description of a strange genre and breed of people, “The Hybrids” I call them. These breed of people seem absolutely invincible and the secret of their strength, dexterity and invincibility is that they listen to the voice of their commanding officer, who commands them despite the differences in makeup, function and expectations; conflict was never heard of, neither was there trespassing in the line of duty. Clashes weren’t the order of the day, neither was there schism nor misunderstanding. Such an embodiment of unity displayed.
This however happens to be a mirage in the body of Christ in this contemporary time.
So much proliferation of churches and assemblies, rise of ministries and prayer houses and lots more. Denominational segregation and dogmatic extremism, the ones called and sent out of God, those called of God but sent out by themselves, those never called but rather called themselves since they perceive the art of church and ministry as a lucrative business and lastly those sponsored by the devil. Each desiring to function independently of the other forgetting that it’s “the body of Christ” and not “my sovereign empire”, resulting to a wide range of wantonness and lugubrious licentiousness, lawlessness and indiscipline becomes the order of the day and so much confusion. So much noise yet no one distinct sound is made, sounds that will pierce into the heavens of God, so much talking, yet no impact, so much oratory and yet wickedness increases all round geometrically, powerless and intellectually concocted sermons, yet humanity wallows in bondage and perpetual corruption even though, creations salvation was ordained by God to come through humanity. It’s a theater of unending mishmash, ranging to the spurious to the scandalous. Outright contradiction and variance in what the Holy Spirit seems to be saying and his ordinances, for while it’s the season of grace for one, it’s the moment of manifestation for another. Such is found in separate enclaves within the same territory.
Jesus prayed and said …….that they may be one……… John 17:23, what actually was he insinuating????
Did he intent that we all come under the leadership of one shepherd as a spiritual cover, or was he insinuating something else because what we see today, is contrary of the phrase, “that they may be one”.
Unity is strength, undisputed. But what is the unity Jesus prayed for the church for???
We are the body of Christ, and just as a body consists of organs, tissues and systems, it is no different from the pattern of functionality in the body of Christ.
Few points to Note
1. Elementary biology tells us that cells of similar features cluster together and form tissues, similar tissues come together and form organs, organs form a system and systems forms the whole body.
Environmental sciences have made us understand that our environment is made up of systems and cycles, without which imbalance and eventual failure if the whole ecological system is surely inevitable. This helps understand the structure of the body of Christ as a whole, as the physical are sometimes the reflection of the spiritual.
In an army, contemporary or ancient times, there are artilleries, foot soldiers, cavalries, archers, strategists, pilots, swordsmen, financiers, instigators, researchers and lots more. Each soldier is placed in his platoon based of his capabilities, strengths and ability to perform certain tasks, and together they function as one.
Every appliance, gadget, instrument, and even automobiles aren’t not made up of just a part, even the simplest or the most complex of micro organisms or appliance has constitutional parts, which work together in order to accomplish a simple task.
Like earlier on said, the body of Christ isn’t any different, however, the big question remains, what then is the consensual point of compromise and understanding?
Does coming together under one under shepherd means unity? Or is unity is a negligible fête, and of inconsequential necessity?
Before proceeding, I would like to state explicitly, that even though we are the body of Christ, Christ is the head, the central control point. This is not debatable and undisputable.
The brain coordinates the functionality of the whole system and it is housed in the head, so also, Christ who is the sole administrator of the purposes of God, is the head of his body.
1 Col 12:12-31 explicitly tells us that although we are like different body parts, we are one body and therefore must see ourselves as such.
2. Matthew 26 26-28 says, “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. 27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; 28 for this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
Observe that the head of the body, the sole administrator of the purposes of God, the operator of the whole organization, the coordinator of the whole system, took the bread i.e. the body, his body, he broke it, and said, take, this is my body which was broken for you.
The head himself, who travailed and was worthy to open the book and unlock the scrolls thereof, who purchased us with his own blood, in whose name we have forgiveness, redemption, cleansing and are reconciled unto God, the one in whose name the helper, Alos Parakletus, the Holy spirit was sent, broke the body and distributed it.
3. 1 Cor. 2:10 says, “But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.”
After this searching is done, the next is revelation. This means that only by the spirit can the knowledge of God be made available to us.
God cannot be learnt, whenever God is learnt in some school or seminary, what happens is that the learned can only speak or preach about the God, and not present God, his person, essence and reality because the preacher or speaker as it may, does not know HE who he or she speaks about, he was simply taught about God.
Matt. 10:27 says, “All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him”.
This scripture tells us explicitly, that Jesus and the person of God can only be revealed, and only by the spirit can such revelations be grasped. And such revelations are only by the spirit.
Isa 28:10, 28:23 and 1cor 13:9 makes us understand that no one knows it all, its line upon line, precept upon precept, we know in parts, and prophesy in parts. No man, irrespective of your intellectual ability, large mind or whatsoever, no such person is a custodian of the revelations of God in the absolute, rather, the Holy spirit is the custodian, the gateway and the revealer of the revelations and truths of God. Such revelations and truths cannot be monopolized, NEVER.
Just as in an orchard or a vine has many trees with having different fruits and is a collection, so is the body of Christ. Therefore, at any point in time a believer has a need, he should have every of his need met from the supplies that’s from that orchard or vine, which is the body of Christ.
Based on these points expatiated above, the conclusive verdicts can be reached;
1. The body is made up of systems
2. Christ himself took the body and broke it, and
3. Variance in the needs of individuals.
It is impossible for the body of Christ to submit, or come under the leadership or cover of one figure, or spiritual cover rather.
Oneness doesn’t necessarily mean physical unity, life is firstly spiritual, before it is physical, the physical realm is absolutely at the mercy of the spiritual, i.e. orchestrations, weather angelic or demonic, godly or evil, are firstly initiated, done and sealed in the spirit then their physical manifestation are see.
Joel 2:2-11 says…… “2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. 3A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. 4 The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. 5 Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array. 6 Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness. 7 They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march everyone on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: 8 neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk everyone in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. 9 They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. 10 The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: 11 And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?”
Notice very importantly that what is said in verse 11, the voice is what coordinates the whole vast army. Rather than each strong man stand on his own, they decide rather to be interdependent on each other, following the order or voice of their commanding officer.
1 Cor. 12:4 says, ……... 4 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.
These verses of scripture tells us, its one Spirit, one Lord and one God.
Eph 4:5 tells us we have one Lord, one Faith one Baptism.
The bible says in Jude 20, that we (irrespective of your roots, background or whatsoever may form a basis or yardstick for any separation) should contend for the faith that was once delivered to us,
Unity of faith that Jesus prayed for refers to when the whole body of Christ, understands its vision, mission, purpose and mandate upon the earth surface, gets the original template and perfect blueprint that was in the heart of God before the foundations of the earth was laid, dive into hallowed antiquity and understand where God is coming from, where He is at present, and where He intends to go. That is still not enough, it is also important that the church understands fully, the pattern, modus operandi that God desires to use to achieve this purpose and intent, and lean on the supply of spirit power and ability to accomplish this. A wholesome and complete understanding of the plans and purposes of God.
It is also of uttermost importance, that each part and parcel of the constituent part of the body i.e. you and I, understands where we fit into, able to form clusters(without building walls), listen to the voice of our commanding officer (the Holy spirit) in our various quadrants, and willfully obey, for to obey is better than sacrifice.
Just as cells of similar features cluster to form organs, and organs tissues, and tissues form systems, and the various systems form the whole body, so also, the body of Christ isn’t any different.
The body cannot be under the leadership of a single human figure in the name of spiritual leader, rather, we function by one spirit, the Holy spirit, the very breath of God, for by him, we function, individually and distinct but not separately, as one whole invincible and dexterous system. Pertinently listening to him, getting every detail and instruction, carrying it out to the letter, and keeping in line with every nitty-gritty.
Jesus said, I will build my church (not churches) upon the revelation of Christ, the son of God (the sole administrator of the purposes of God, in heaven, on earth and beneath) and the gates of hell shall not prevail, it is only an invincible church, bond in love and unity of one spirit that cannot be defeated, otherwise, the church is already a failure before it begins learning to walk, its lost the war even before the battle began.
God help us all, to discover what part of his body and army He’s called to serve in, and function wholeheartedly, without wavering left or right, keeping pace with him per time.
May we get understanding and grace, to see other parts of the body as equally important, and not castigate or segregate, cause although we are many, we are one body, we are one body in Christ, in Christ, in Christ and in Christ alone.
God bless you real good.