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Summary: This is the 6th sermon in the "Discipleship" series. This sermon focuses on the body of Christ.

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Sunday Morning October 21, 2001 Bel Aire Baptist Church

Series: Discipleship #6

THE CHURCH: A BODY

Ephesians 4:1-16

Introduction:

1. As we have been studying about being followers of Jesus Christ, I want us to begin to acknowledge what God has done for us since Christ has left this earth and is in heaven.

2. We see in the New Testament the establishing of the church by Jesus Christ. We live in what theologians call the “Church Age”. God is the founder of the church and Jesus is the Head of the church. God instituted the church to do His service here on this earth.

3. What makes a person a member of God’s (the universal) church? When Jesus left this earth, God sent us the Holy Spirit to live within His children. We as Christians have the Holy Spirit of God in our lives. That is what should make us different.

4. The Bible describes the church in several ways and this morning we are going to examine the church as being a body.

I. React (Ephesians 4:1-3)

Illustration:

My physical body reacts to many things. When I am cold, I may shiver. When I am hot, I may sweat. When I am hungry, my stomach may growl. When I am sick, my body temperature may rise. In order for my body to remain at its best, I must do certain things. As Christians we are to react certain ways to situations, people, and circumstances in our lives in order to remain healthy as a body.

A. The Calling

1. Remember that as a Christian, you are no longer your own. You belong to God.

2. As a Christian, you have received a calling upon your life.

3. You are told by God what you are to be in the body. He decides, not you.

B. Be

1. Completely humble and gentle.

2. Patient, bearing with one another in love.

3. Unified.

Illustration:

When I have a headache, the rest of my body has to be patient with my head. My stomach, that is probably upset because of the headache, doesn’t quit. It keeps doing its job and bears with the headache. We as a body sometimes get sin sick and we as the body instead of quitting or wanting to get rid of that sick body part, are to be patient as that body part is healed. When we are sick, we take medicine. God gives us the medicine to cure these sicknesses in the body. God says to be patient in love. It takes a special love to be patient sometimes. God says to be unified in peace. It is God that gives us this love and peace.

II. Recognize (Ephesians 4:4-10)

A. One

1. Body

2. Spirit

3. Hope

4. Lord

5. Faith

6. Baptism (Holy Spirit)

7. God and Father of all.

B. Christ

1. Had victory over death, sin, and Satan.

2. Apportioned our grace. (God’s grace is always sufficient.)

3. Did the work.

III. Receive (Ephesians 4:11-13)

A. Care Of The Body

1. Apostles

2. Prophets

3. Evangelists

4. Pastors and teachers

B. Job Description

1. Prepare God’s people for works of service.

2. To build up the body of Christ.

3. To continue until the body is mature.

Illustration:

This point is so important. We must realize that God has not called us all to pastor or teach, but He has called us all to do something. There are many parts of the body and some of them you cannot see without cutting the body open, but I will promise you that without a liver or kidneys it is harder to survive. We must also realize that whatever we are to be doing that if you don’t do your part then who is. My finger does not and cannot pump blood for my heart and if it tried, I would die. The body of Christ is so weakened when not all of the parts are working.


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