Church Basics - Bible Study Day 2

By Mike Beaumont

The church is a body

Another picture that speaks of how very much we belong to one another is the picture of the Church as a body – not just any old body; but rather, the Body of Christ himself! It is his life that draws us together, holds us together, and expresses itself through us to the world. We are not an organisation, but a living organism!

Read:
Ephesians 4 v1-16

Who is the ‘Head’ of the Body? (v15)
What words in v16 indicate how we should relate to one another and work together? What do you think this means?
What is Jesus’ goal for his Body? (v11-13)

Now let’s turn to one more passage that describes us as the Body of Christ:

Read:
1 Corinthians 12 v12-31

How does this passage bring out -
a) that we desperately need one another?
b) that it is OK to be different and have different gifts and abilities?
c) that unity is tremendously important?

You may be a fairly new Christian, and you may feel fairly insignificant; but the Bible says that you have a vital place in the Body of Christ. You are needed by the other parts of the Body; and you have need of them.

The Body of Christ is not just a picture – it is a reality! And Jesus has called you to be part of it.

The church is a temple

Having said that the Church is not a building, there is one sort of building that the Church is – but one that is not made with bricks and mortar, as the following two passages show.

Read:
1 Corinthians 3 v16-17

What sort of building does Paul say we are?
What makes this building special?

1 Peter 2 v4-5

How does Peter describe us in these verses? 
What do you think he means by this?

We can sum this up by saying:

The building is ‘us’! 

God needs no physical building; his building is us! We are the bricks he is using, and he wants us built together strongly so that people can come to this building and see his glory. What cements us together is his love. 

The building is holy

This building is holy because it is God’s building and God is holy. That means everything in it should be holy too – including us. Whenever we still hold on to things from our old way of life, it brings dirt into the temple and spoils it. We need to keep ourselves clean with the help of God’s Spirit so that the temple can stay holy and people will recognise that God is there.

The building isn’t finished!

This building isn’t finished yet, and won’t be until God’s chosen moment at the end of human history. So, like any building site, at times you will find the odd eyesore or two! That’s why we shouldn’t be too quick to criticise other bricks that God is still working on. Learn how to be gracious and forgiving to others; you might need their forgiveness before too long!

 

God does not want me to be a lonely brick. I have an important place to fit into what God is building – a temple where he can show his glory.

 

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