Day Four

Week Four - Day Four
Love the Church

 

LISTEN

Romans 12:4-13 - For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness. Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.

Ephesians 4:11-16 - And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Galatians 6:10 - So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

 

LEARN

We as believers make up one body in Christ. We are united together with Jesus at the helm. Each believer is a specific part of this body, knit together by God into a specific place and purpose. We are not only members of Christ but members of one another (Rom 12:5), called to serve each other in love. God has given each of us definitive gifts for the good and benefit of the whole and for each individual member. Once we accept Christ, we are no longer independent and lonely entities living our lives to serve only ourselves. Rather, we are called into an intricately woven family. We are an essential part needed for the completion and perfection of the body of Christ. All of our responsibilities towards one another can be summed up in Love (Luke 10:27-28). Paul, in his letter to the church in Rome, wrote about having gifts that serve the church. He transitions immediately to a strong call of agape love. It’s as if he is both summarizing the purpose of the gifts and casting vision for how those gifts and love play out in real life.

One way our love and gifts unfold in real life is through relationships with our brothers and sisters in the church. He encourages us, in Galatians 6;10, to have a familial type love with one another when he uses the word philadelphia instead of agape. This is the love that disciples of Jesus should feel towards his/her brothers and sisters in Christ. We are to cherish and take care of each other as we would our own physical families. We have a high calling to the body of Christ: to love and serve it. We are to love our fellow saints as Christ loved the Church and gave himself up for it. This is where our love starts.

 

LIVE

• Do you love your fellow believers as Paul describes in Romans 12? How does that flow out into your life?

• What is your understanding about serving and loving God’s people? Does that line up with Scripture? If it does not, what do you need to change? • How can you put God’s calling to love his people into practice this week?

• If you haven’t taken the Spiritual Gifts Test yet, here is another opportunity to do so. You can take the online Spiritual Gifts Test at:

rchurch.family/spiritualgiftstest

Understanding your spiritual gifts can guide you in serving the God’s people.