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Tropical Leaves

Being the Body of Christ

April 4, 2022

In 1 Corinthians 6, Paul calls upon pastors and church leaders to counsel and make judgement in settling disputed between believers in their church.
This is where their teaching, counseling and judgment must be inline with Jesus’ teachings and commandment which he gave to his apostles to teach the church.
Paul said to appoint those in church who are of little account to judge disputes because the leaders were not willing to settle disputes in church.
1 Corinthians 6: 4 Therefore, if you have disputes about such matters, appoint as judges even men of little account in the church! 5 I say this to shame you. Is it possible that there is nobody among you wise enough to judge a dispute between believers?

How many believers settle a dispute by seeking their pastor or church leader counsel? Trusting that they will receive Godly counsel and instructions when they themselves do not know Jesus’ teaching and when they learn it is from Jesus are willing to submit to it because Jesus is their Lord.
Paul said in: 2 Timothy 2:5 Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor's crown unless he competes according to the rules.

For us to win the prize of being with God we must follow the rules that Jesus has set forth for us to receive it. This is not working for our salvation it is knowing how to work out our salvation with fear and trembling by staying on the narrow path Jesus has set for us to follow.
What pastor’s set before the church is the teachings and commandments of Jesus which they use to settle disagreements, but it will be up to the believer to obey their counsel because they personally know it is true to Jesus and that he is their Lord.
These rules are the works of service that the church follows so that they become united in one faith to have the complete knowledge of our Lord Jesus that Paul taught is Ephesians 4.
I shared some of Paul’s rules last time ending with the husband and wife being responsible to care for their marital needs to protect their marriage from the temptations of the devil.
Paul continues in chapter 7 teaching why men and women should or should not marry, what a believing wife must do if she separates from her husband, a believing husband must not divorce their believing wife, reason for not divorcing and when divorce is allowed when married to an unbelieving spouse and who a believing widow or widower should marry.
Chapter 8, Paul teaches the freedom we have in Christ and to be careful in how we use our freedom before others.
1 Corinthians 8: 9 Be careful, however, that the exercise of your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak.
Paul said those who are knowledgeable in the freedom they have in Jesus need to be careful not to flaunt that freedom before other believers whose faith is still growing to distinguish good and evil. Flaunting our freedom may make them believe it is okay to sin.
1 Corinthians 8: Now about food sacrificed to idols: We know that we all possess knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. 2 The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know. 3 But the man who loves God is known by God.
Loving Jesus is doing everything out of love for him and when we do not do it out of love for God, we will not be known by him.

In chapter 9 Paul said when he preaches the gospel, he does it voluntarily because he knows then he will receive a reward in heaven. Those who do preach should receive an earning if they are sowing spiritual seeds, but Paul said he is compelled to preach because of his love for Jesus and he will become whatever is needed to save some because of his love for them.

So, when we follow these rules that Paul lays out for the church it must be done out of our love for God which Paul teaches in Corinthians 13.

In chapter 10 Paul wants the church to learn from Scripture God’s reasons for punishing the Israelites as a warning for us not to commit idolatry, sexual immorality, to test God and to grumble to God as they did. We also must not participate in any other religion rituals even though we know their god or gods do not exist because they are worshipping demons.

In chapter 11, Paul said men and women in church must respect the authority that God has created them to be as they serve each other unto the Lord. Communion must always be taken respecting the holiness of the bread and the fruit of the vine being the broken body and shed blood of their Lord Jesus.

In chapter 12, Paul said it is through the Holy Spirit that one proclaims “Jesus is Lord” because this statement is true to God. Spiritual gifts are given by the Holy Spirit as he determines and not by others and he gives these spiritual gifts for the common good of the church.

In chapter 13, Paul teaches everything we do must be done out of love for God or it has no meaning to him. Paul describes the attributes of Godly love.

In chapter 14, Paul said the gift everyone should seek is speaking God’ word, which is prophesy because it edifies the church giving it strength, encouragement, and comfort. Tongues should only be spoken when it can be interpreted so it can edify the whole church and tongues are evidence for unbelievers.

In chapter 15, Paul teaches never doubt the resurrection of Jesus for it is one of the pillars of our faith for our salvation. It is the proof like Jesus our body will one day resurrect not in flesh but into a new spiritual body like Jesus.

In chapter 16, Paul teaches that our giving should be to help those in need and done not as a sacrifice but in keeping with our income so that what we receive from the Lord cares for our own needs.

These are clear rules we as a church must understand and follow to settles any disputes and disagreements and obey as on to the Lord.

Be safe in Jesus.
Ps. Glenn

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