Each Part Working Together


When Nehemiah was called by God to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, he didn’t attempt to do it by himself, and he didn’t employ a ministry team to do it with him while the citizens of Jerusalem sat around watching them. The rebuilding was a community project where everyone got involved.

All worked together and each one’s contribution was vital. Some were able to build long sections while others could only deal with the part beside their home. But no matter how large or small the contribution, ALL was needed. Even the smallest gap left untended weakened the overall project.

I saw parallels with this story in 1 Corinthians 12 where Paul wrote about ALL believers being part of the body of Christ. Each body part needs to be enabled to function and not neglected. Each part is needed to do its work if the body is going to achieve its complete purpose.

The body is not made up of one part but of many.

Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.  And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.  If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be?  But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.  If they were all one part, where would the body be?  As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!”  On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable,  and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty,  while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it,  so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.  If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

Can we make this a reality? Or at least can we consider whether our current ways are reflecting the working together approach described above?

3 thoughts on “Each Part Working Together

  1. Hi Tim, I think it’s already a reality, just not in the setting we’ve conveniently arranged for it (church building). I think Holy Spirit has always made it the reality and continues to do so, quite apart from human institutions. There are connections, believers being the Body of Christ together, even if they are not physically together. And I think the reality goes back through Christian history also, i.e. you and I are connected in the Body to those who sincerely followed Christ before us. We can’t see, hear or touch them, but nevertheless we are connected by the Spirit. I think for too long we’ve confined our understanding of the Body of Christ to the local church setting, or even the town/city setting, but in reality it’s only in and by the Spirit with the Spirit orchestrating the ways in which all the various members operate, minister and connect. When the Holy Spirit is locked out of what we have come to know as ”church” we’re not going to see the Body functioning as Paul describes it. What do you think?

  2. Hi Cheryl,
    I believe throughout history there have been those who have remained faithful even when the majority have followed man’s religious ways. It’s the same today. There’s a narrow gate, a narrow path but not many find it and most choose the broad path.
    It’s so much easier for people to fulfill their religious ‘duty’ by remaining relatively anonymous in the pews of their chosen church denomination.

    Ideally we could all be part of a local fellowship where members work together to build each other up. I see that happening in a few places elsewhere, a group here and a group there, but not where I live.
    But I suspect God has given an opportunity for that to change.

    I’ve written occasionally about the effects of the covid-19 situation. Many seem to be complaining about the inconveniences and the political
    situation – even promoting wild conspiracy claims. But I believe the Lord has a different outlook and a different purpose, shown in this illustration:
    https://www.facebook.com/tim.onesimus.7/posts/138145311340486

    I’ve been trying to draw together a lot of the results of bible study, revelation and observation.
    While many will try to cling to the comforts of the familiar religious systems, others will be drawn to return to a more biblically relevant path and more local believers will be drawn together into genuine fellowship groups to undertake real body ministry and outreach into their communities.
    I still don’t have a clear full picture – just a glimpse of this and a glimpse of that…

    For almost two decades I’ve tried various churches but have found most my most fruitful fellowship has been through long distant friendships, either online, via phone with only occasional personal meetings. I have a feeling that’s going to change, and not only for me.

    In prayer the other day the words shaking, sifting and division came to mind. A significant separating of man’s ways and God’s ways.

  3. “While many will try to cling to the comforts of the familiar religious systems, others will be drawn to return to a more biblically relevant path and more local believers will be drawn together into genuine fellowship groups to undertake real body ministry and outreach into their communities.” I hope along with you that this truly is a turning point. Time will tell I guess 🙂

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