“For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.” – 1 Corinthians 12:13 (NKJV)
The Body Needs Each Part
My favorite commercial these days is for eye drops. The ad is memorable, amusing, and absurd. It features two large eyeballs driving around town. One eyeball is the “straight-laced guy” and the other is the “funny guy” who cracks all the jokes. The “straight” eyeball is driving, while the “funny” eyeball is in the passenger seat being obnoxious; not wearing his seat-belt, messing with the dash and radio, and yelling out of the windows. He’s being irritating. He’s an irritated eyeball that needs eye drops.
Ridiculous! Eyeballs don’t drive. It takes a whole body to drive a car. The body can’t drive without eyeballs and eyeballs can’t drive without the rest of the body.
When Paul talks about the unifying work of the Holy Spirit, he uses the “one body” as a word picture because each part of the body needs every other part. It’s absurd to think that Jewish Christians can get the job done without Greek Christians and that free Christians can get their part done without working class Christians. It’s absurd to think God would want to reach the world any other way, from Paul’s point of view.
One Body One Mission
When Jesus finished His earthly ministry, the next phase of the program was put in motion. “It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7 NKJV), Jesus said, telling His disciples about the Holy Spirit. There was a phase of the gospel spreading movement that would be handled by redeemed, transformed, Spirit-filled people. Each Spirit-filled, Spirit-gifted person has a special function and needs every other Spirit-filled person.
There are people in your life that you’re meant to do spiritual and practical ministry with, but you’ve written them off for some reason. Or you’ve been written off and are limping along comfortably in your discomfort because it’s familiar.
Be reconciled to the person you think you can do without. There is not one part of your own body that you would want to fall out or drop off. You’re fooling yourself if you think you could function without that body part. Don’t be one that writes people off. Be one who reconciles. Pray now for wisdom, grace, and an extra measure of God’s Spirit to do it well.