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Encouraging the Ranks

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Encouraging the Ranks

1 Corinthians 12:12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.

Arrangement of the Tribal Camps of Israel

Numbers 2:9 Judah first to set out; 31 Dan last

All were given the same promise of a land flowing with milk and honey, following the same pillar and cloud, drinking the same water flowing from the rock, eating the quail, etc

Each tribe had certain responsibilities.  It doesn’t matter who lead the procession, or who brought up the rear.  It’s very similar in the church today.  Those who lead set the pace, decided the course, and kept those who may have been overly ambitious at bay.  Those who were last protected the rear, pressed on those in the middle who slack, and gathered the possessions that may have been dropped along the way.  Those in the middle make up the largest number of people, and provide the entire group with the most broad of resources and talents.  Everyone benefits from everyone else.

Matt 20:1-8 For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire men to work in his vineyard. 2 He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard. 3 “About the third hour he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4 He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ 5 So they went. “He went out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour and did the same thing. 6 About the eleventh hour he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’ 7 “ ‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.

“He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’ 8 “When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first

Understand the similarities between earthly life and spiritual life.  Our bodies constantly regenerate and replenish themselves.  Blood, skin cells, and nutrients are in constant renewal, amongst other things.  But regardless of time, our bodies receive the same reward throughout life, and will find a common fate at the end if we treat it with respect.  If we don’t, we will see parts of us die along the way, which will make other parts of the body work harder or suffer more.  God is trying to speak to us today and make us realize how easily we can relate things we can see and know with what we must hold on to by faith.  We as the church are in this race together.

1 Corinthians 9:24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.  We run as one as the Body of Christ.  We are not in this thing alone…

1 Corinthians 12:27. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

Ephesians 4:11-13  It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

Hebrews 6:1-3 Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death,a and of faith in God, 2 instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. 3 And God permitting, we will do so.

I have been sent here to do a job.  You have been sent here to do a job.  Some will lead and train.  Some will weigh the effectiveness of how it was and how it is, and give wisdom.  Some will have all the fire and energy.  Some will be limited.  Some will have the depth of wisdom and knowledge that it will take to stand the test of time.  Some will have the talent to fill one role excellently.  Some will be a jack or jill of all trades.  But we all are the Body of Christ.  We all benefit the Body of Christ in our own, God-given way.  We all have a purpose to live for, otherwise, we would be standing before God in Heaven.  Hold your position.  Stand firm.  Christ has your back.  His protection is unfailing.  He loves you.

Old covenant, one man was used.  Then Jesus came.  We became a corporate body.

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