The Church: An Army of One (Another’s)

In the previous post, The Battle for Sunday, I made the case for being real and being ready at church. These are crucial steps that help prevent Sunday from being an “event”. Events are impersonal and isolated occurrences. In contrast, the Church is a body, and its members should be connected to one another by more than just the chairs on Sunday

Being real and ready makes Sundays more than an event, and applying the “One Another’s” makes the Christian life about more than just me and my salvation.

Rod Register and I are teaching on the “One Another’s” during the Core Seminar hour. Each week, I will post a blog based on the lesson.

And, because the concept of community is essential to the Church, but is so foreign to a society focused on me and my happiness, I will endeavor in each post to show 1.) why living life as a Church body is best and 2.) how we as individuals can build up the Church through the practical application of the “One Another’s”.

 

Intro: The 5 W’s of the One Another’s

Today, we will lay the groundwork for the One Another’s by answering, “Who, What, When, Where, and Why?”

 

Who is involved in the “One Another’s”?

  • You
  • Other people

(It’s that simple.)

What is a “One Another”?

  • Commands given in Scripture containing the words “one another” or “each other”
  • The Greek word is used 100 times in 97 verses
  • 47 of those uses are commands to Believers
  • People have tried to group them (i.e. Unity, Love, Humility, and Other; or Unity, Hospitality, Devotion, Edification)

When should we exercise the “One Another’s”?

  • All the time.

Where should we exercise the “One Another’s”?

  • In the Church

(Not the building. The Body. And, primarily, within your local Church.)

Why should we exercise the “One Another’s”?

Like everything we do (1 Cor. 10:31), we should practice the “One Another’s” for the glory of God. To glorify God is to put His greatness on display. So, at the most basic level, we should do the “One Another’s” because they put God’s greatness on display.

But why? That is, why do the “One Another’s” glorify God?

God does everything for His own glory.

God designed people for “Community” (Gen. 2:18).

  • People were created for relationship with God and one another.
  • Through sin, those relationships have been damaged.

The Church is a taste of that original community restored.

  • By God’s grace, He has made restoration and reconciliation possible.
  • Jesus’ death has brought dead people to life. (Eph. 2:1-10)
  • Jesus’ blood has made it possible to have peace with God and with others. (Eph. 2:11-20)

When the Church functions properly, it glorifies God.

  • This new creation community, called “the Church” is designed in a particular way, so that, when it functions correctly, God’s glory is “made known” in ways that it had not been before. (Eph. 3:7-11)
  • The Church has been given leadership (1 Tim.), and all of its members are gifted in particular ways to build up the Church. (Eph. 4:7-13)

The function of the Church is growth (internal & external).

  • The Church is a “Temple under construction”. (Eph. 2:19-22)
  • The Church is a body “growing to maturity”. (Eph. 4:15-16)

Growth is achieved through serving one another.

  • The goal is to finish the “construction”, to grow “until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood.”
  • We build each other up by using the gifts that the Spirit has given us.

 

Conclusion

When we practice the “One Another’s”, we are living as a new creation community, which is designed to grow and build itself up, until God’s glory is perfectly reflected in us.

 

So, what are the “One Another” commands? And how do we practically live them out?

 

-Jason Stiles

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credit: Craig Sunter.

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