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Vieraskieliset / In-english

Ser­ving ot­hers rein­for­ces the bond bet­ween be­lie­vers

Siionin Lähetyslehti
Vieraskieliset / In-english
5.4.2019 13.52

Juttua muokattu:

1.1. 12:22
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When Paul wri­tes about God’s cong­re­ga­ti­on to the cong­re-ga­ti­on of Co­rinth in Gree­ce, he re­fers to it as the body of Christ.

“Now you are the body of Christ and in­di­vi­du­al­ly mem­bers of it.” (1 Cor. 12:27)

Paul wrote that all who have re­cei­ved the grace of re­pen­tan­ce are child­ren of God re­gard­less if they are sla­ves or free, Jews or Greeks.

This re­min­der was ne­ces­sa­ry be­cau­se pe­op­le from a wide ran­ge of dif­fe­rent cul­tu­res and na­ti­o­na­li­ties had set­t­led in Co­rinth.

In the uni­ty of the Spi­rit

God’s cong­re­ga­ti­on is a re­joi­cing cong­re­ga­ti­on, yet al­so a bat­t­ling one. The bat­t­le will end with the se­cond co­ming of Christ.

Un­til then, the ene­my of souls tries to int­ro­du­ce new ide­as or bro­a­der thin­king to Chris­ti­a­ni­ty, the­re­by see­king to break the brot­her­ly, mu­tu­al love bet­ween the child­ren of God that is ef­fec­ted by the Holy Spi­rit.

For this re­a­son, in re­fer­ring to the child­ren of God in Co­rinth as mem­bers of the body of Christ, Paul wan­ted the re­ci­pients of his let­ter to re­mem­ber what it me­ans to have be­co­me ow­ners of spi­ri­tu­al uni­ty with Christ and His cong­re­ga­ti­on.

“For in one Spi­rit we were all bap­ti­zed in­to one body—Jews or Greeks, sla­ves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spi­rit.” (1 Cor. 12:13)

Faith gi­ves a de­si­re to ser­ve

Eve­ry child of God has his or her own place and task as a mem­ber of the body of Christ; in the home cong­re­ga­ti­on or in the work of God’s king­dom more bro­ad­ly.

It is said in the let­ter to the Co­rint­hi­ans: “Now there are va­rie­ties of gifts, but the same Spi­rit; and there are va­rie­ties of ser­vi­ce, but the same Lord.” (1 Cor. 12:4–5)

These gifts are both tem­po­ral and spi­ri­tu­al. “To each is gi­ven the ma­ni­fes­ta­ti­on of the Spi­rit for the com­mon good.” (1 Cor. 12:7)

Li­ving faith gi­ves a de­si­re to ser­ve. It spawns love to­ward all pe­op­le and cal­ls un­be­lie­vers to re­pen­tan­ce. It ex­horts those who have lost their faith to re­turn to the Fat­her’s hou­se.

The mis­si­on com­mand is me­ant for eve­ry­o­ne

Je­sus Him­self te­ac­hes: “Go in­to all the world and proc­laim the gos­pel to the whole cre­a­ti­on.” (Mark 16:15)

The work of the king­dom of God in the cong­re­ga­ti­on of the new co­ve­nant is ba­sed on this mis­si­on com­mand. Eve­ry mem­ber of the body of Christ has been gi­ven this task. It is not pos­sib­le to per­form this task ac­cor­ding to God’s will un­less one ta­kes care of his or own per­so­nal faith.

The Ca­tec­hism sta­tes: “Christ’s work in this world con­ti­nu­es in His Church as the work of the Holy Spi­rit. In Christ’s Church we have a li­ving bond to Christ and ot­her Chris­ti­ans. For this re­a­son the Bib­le cal­ls the Church the body of Christ.” (Ca­tec­hism 1948, art. 44)

Ser­ving builds up faith and the cong­re­ga­ti­on

Eve­ry be­lie­ver is equip­ped “for the work of mi­nist­ry, for buil­ding up the body of Christ.” (Eph. 4:12)

Eve­ry task of ser­vi­ce is va­lu­ab­le and ne­ces­sa­ry. I re­call an el­der I met some time ago. This el­der said he pra­yed to the He­a­ven­ly Fat­her that He would bless His king­dom and give ser­vants of the Word strength to stand in grace and truth in this time that is ero­ding the word of God.

Even though this el­der’s hands were no lon­ger ca­pab­le of doing phy­si­cal work in the king­dom of God, they could still be fol­ded in pra­yer.

Doing the work of Chris­ti­a­ni­ty pro­tects us

The work of the king­dom of God al­wa­ys pro­vi­des pro­tec­ti­on that rein­for­ces the bond of love.

This is im­por­tant, as the most tre­ac­he­rous met­hod used by the ene­my of souls is to pri­va­ti­ze pe­op­le’s life of faith and les­sen in­te­rac­ti­on bet­ween the child­ren of God.

Apost­le Pe­ter’s inst­ruc­ti­on is cur­rent in this time of sel­fish­ness and en­ter­tain­ment: “For this very re­a­son, make eve­ry ef­fort to sup­p­le­ment yo­ur faith with vir­tue, and vir­tue with know­led­ge, and know­led­ge with self-cont­rol, and self-cont­rol with ste­ad­fast­ness, and ste­ad­fast­ness with god­li­ness, and god­li­ness with brot­her­ly af­fec­ti­on, and brot­her­ly af­fec­ti­on with love.” (2 Pet. 1:5–7)

De­ca­des ago a Fin­nish spe­a­ker said in his ser­mon: “Throug­hout all time the child­ren of God, en­ligh­te­ned by the Spi­rit, have un­ders­tood that those who will be sa­ved are gat­he­red, al­re­a­dy on this earth in the time of grace, in­to the king­dom of grace es­tab­lis­hed by Christ. Those who have been was­hed and cle­an­sed with His pre­ci­ous ato­ne­ment blood live here in the Fat­her’s hou­se.”

Text: Ta­pa­ni Kir­si­lä

This text was ori­gi­nal­ly pub­lis­hed in Sii­o­nin Lä­he­tys­leh­ti, 9/2018.

Trans­la­ti­on: K.K.

Jul­kais­tu eng­lan­nin­kie­li­ses­sä kie­li­liit­tees­sä tam­mi­kuus­sa 2019

1.6.2020

Pie­ta­ri sa­noi: "Kään­ty­kää ja ot­ta­kaa it­se ku­kin kas­te Jee­suk­sen Kris­tuk­sen ni­meen, jot­ta syn­tin­ne an­net­tai­siin an­teek­si. Sil­loin te saat­te lah­jak­si Py­hän Hen­gen." Ap. t. 2:38

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