1 Corinthians 12:14-26 ESV
14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.
I. THE GIFT OF 2 BAPTISMS INTO 2 CHURCHES (12-13)
A. Trusting Jesus means being baptized inwardly by the Holy Spirit and outwardly by water in the context of the local church. (Matthew 3:11, Acts 2:1-3)
B. Trusting in Jesus means being called to be part of His universal church comprised of the redeemed of Christ from across the globe.
C. Trusting in Jesus means choosing to be part of a local church comprised of a few determined to make much of Jesus in a specific geographical area.
II. NECESSITY OF JOINING A LOCAL CHURCH
A. The NT does command you join a local church and that you embrace that when Jesus saved you He saved you to both a universal and a local people. (Matthew 18:15-20)
B. We need the gift of your presence and you sharing your stories of scars and suffering.
III. NECESSITY OF ALL BELIEVERS IN THE LOCAL CHURCH (14-20)
A. You have a spiritual gift and we need you and your gift and you need us and our gift if we are to all we hope to be in Christ.
IV. REPLACABILITY OF ALL BELIEVERS IN THE LOCAL CHURCH (21-24)
A. You matter in the church, but sometimes, not as much as you think you do.
B. Don’t confuse impressive with important.
1. Stop pursuing isolation, being important and impressive and instead, embrace our interdependence in Christ and the local church.