September 24, 2010

The Body of Christ

Posted in Authority, Christian Living, Christianity, Faith, Fasting, Keys To The Kingdom tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 4:05 am by Lisa Ritchey


Many people believe that we, the individuals that make up the church, also make up the body of Jesus.  This is simply not possible.  Jesus is forever sitting on the right hand of The Father making intercession for us.  (Romans 8:34). Jesus has His body.  It is glorified, but whole and intact.  The only thing missing is The Blood.  We, therefore, can not possibly be making up His physical body.   In fact Jesus is in His believers in the form of The Holy Spirit.   

So what, exactly, are we the body of?    

We are not His physical body, but we, instead, are many, many , many members joined together by the Holy Spirit to stand in His place on the earth.  There will only be one Messiah, EVER, and His name was, is, and ever shall be Jesus.  “In my name they shall…” (Mark 16:17).  We have been given His power of attorney.  “It is just wrong to even think that!”  No, it is Biblical.  Let me show you:     

 The word “Christ” is not Jesus’ last name, but instead an adjective that describes Him.  It means The Anointed One and His Anointing[1]  What is the anointing?     

Strong’s defines anointing as the special endowment of the Holy Spirit.[2]  Some of the words that anointing is derived from are:     

  •  [3]chrio- which means to smear or rub with oil, to consecrate to an office or religious service.  We know that in the Bible, oil is symbolic of the Holy Spirit and His gifts and powers.  
  • [4]chraomai- which means,  to furnish what is needed; to employ or act towards one in a given manner: – entreat, use.
  • [5]cheir-  through the idea of hollowness for grasping; the hand [power]; especially [by Hebraism] a means or instrument: – hand. [Wow! The part that makes it happen.]
  • [6]chraō- to loan: – lend.  [We only need it (the anointing) until Jesus returns for us!]
  • [7]chrē- means it needs (must or should) be: – ought.  [It must, should, or ought to be.  Needs to be.  For every believer. ]

Which brings up another point:  Believers in what?     

Jesus is in Heaven, but the Holy Spirit is here on Earth, so when Jesus ascended to Heaven the anointing simply lifted off one body (Jesus’) and in Acts 2 began settling on another, us!  1 John 2:27 tells us that this is true.  “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, ….”  The Churches around Ephesus were most likely the recipients of this letter[8]  This being the case, it would also apply to us as believers today.  In the Scriptures following, you will see that it was soldiers, plain, ordinary people John was talking to; not the Disciples or Apostles, just plain, ordinary believers.   

Luke 3:14-16   

(14) And the soldiers likewise demanded of him[John the Baptist], saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.   

(15) And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not;   

(16) John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: 

 So, we know that Jesus is the one that Baptizes with the Holy Spirit.  Now, if He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8), this means that He is still baptizing believers with the Holy Spirit and with Fire, just like He did then.  If not, then that Scripture is not true.  We know that all Scriptures are true, though.  Therefore, Jesus is still baptizing with the Holy Spirit.  “These signs shall follow them that believe.”[9]  But believe what?  Believe the promise that Jesus made.  What was that?  To be endued with power after the Holy Ghost has come upon you:  

And, behold, I send the promise of my Father [10] upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high. (Luke 24:49)”  * 

Why would we need such power here, today?   

Jesus had a purpose: to be Savior to the world.  He held offices of the Church: High Priest, Prophet, apostle, teacher, and Pastor (after all, He is the Good Shepherd![11] ).  He had a ministry: Healing the sick, raising the dead, casting out devils, etc.   As He is in Heaven now, we, His believers on the earth, are the body of Christ: the empowered to fulfill His ministry on Earth.   This is the purpose of the body of Christ, those that believe the promise made by both God and Jesus- that those that believe that Jesus fulfilled His purpose as Savior (see my “Read Me” page), and only those, have the right to receive the empowerment of the Holy Ghost, or the anointing.  Through this, there will be those that are chosen by God to fulfill the five offices of the church[12], but Jesus promised the baptism of the Holy Ghost and it’s empowerment to all that believe His promises:   

Mark 16:17-18 

(17) And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 

(18) They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.[13]
“But I got the Holy Spirit when I got saved.”  Yes, but there is more of the Holy Spirit you can get! 

Acts 19:1-7  

(1) And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, [already believers]  

(2) He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.  

(3) And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.  

(4) Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.  

(5) When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  

(6) And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.  

(7) And all the men were about twelve.  

This Scripture sums it all up so very well:  

1 Corinthians 12: 

(4) Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  

(5) And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord.  

(6) And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.  

(7) But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.  

(11) But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing [distributing] to every man severally as he will.  

(12) For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.  

(13) For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  

(14) For the body is not one member, but many.  

(18) But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.  

(19) And if they were all one member, where were the body?  

(20) But now are they many members, yet but one body.  

(21) And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.  

(24) For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked:  

(25) That there should be no schism [split or gap] in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.  

(26) And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.  

(27) Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.  

“But that all stopped when the last Apostle died!”  Scripture  tells us when it will stop: When Jesus returns.  Then we will no longer need them.    

1 Corinthians 13:9-10   

(9) For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.  

(10) But when that which is perfect [14] is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.  

So we are the body that is taking Jesus’ place on the earth, made up of believers, with those that choose to receive the fullness of the promise of the Holy Ghost receiving the anointing.  This is the purpose of the anointing: to empower believers to be the tool the Holy Spirit works through to lift burdens and destroy yolks [15]; in other words, to fulfill Jesus’ ministry.   

The Body Of Christ: Jesus is the head of the body.   It is Jesus via the empowerment of the Holy Spirit doing the Father’s will through us.  I can want to go to my kitchen, but if my feet won’t go, it ain’t gonna happen! It is the same thing here.  Now, it is up to us to be yielded to the Holy Spirit working through us, to be His hands, feet, mouth- His body-  and see that Gods will gets done.  Just like Jesus did it. 

The power of the Holy Spirit is real, it is still working through believers today, and it is yours for the asking. [16] 


 

[1] Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5547        

[2]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #G5545        

[3]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5548        

[4]Strong’s Greek dictionary entry  5530        

[5]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5495        

[6]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5531        

[7]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5534        

[8] Notes beginning The First Epistle of John, Spirit Filled Life Bible, King James Version, Thomas Nelson Publishers      

[9] Mark 16:17        

[10] Joel 2:28: And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:         

*NOTE: Jesus told them to do this because He knew it would be two weeks before the Holy Spirit descended on them like tongues of fire, and He knew it would happen in the upper room in Jerusalem.  Today, we neither have to go to Jerusalem, nor to tarry, but only to ask, and receive.

[11]  John 10:11,14      

[12] Ephesians 4:11      

[13] For more on this, see my previous post WHERE IS THE POWER IN THE CHURCH TODAY? Part 1 and Part 2      

[14]Strong’s Greek Dictionary entry #5046- of a full age, complete.  When this age is fufilled.  It is then that Jesus shall return.     

[15]Isaiah 10:27      

[16]If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?  (Luke 11:13)

©Copyright 2010 Lisa Ritchey and Bare Bones Gospel


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