"Showing the way, Teaching the truth,
Experiencing the life in Christ"
Did you know that you can WATCH VIDEOS of previous sermons on YouTube? Check out the Open Door's YouTube channel:
You can also watch the most recent sermons right here on our website.
Simply visit our Sermon Videos page.
Every Member in Ministry
(I Corinthians 12:27, NET)
“You are Christ’s body, and each of you is a member of it.”
The church is a marvelous masterpiece from the mind of God. It is the only organization on earth commissioned by God Himself to do the work of the Kingdom of God. It is the only organization in the world about which Jesus said, “He purchased [it] with his own blood” (Acts 20:28, NKJV). It is the only organization to which Jesus made the promise, “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you” (Acts 1:8, NKJV). The church is the only organization in the world to which our Lord said, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20, NKJV).
What I am trying to say is that in the mind of God, His church is the most important organization on earth…more important than softball leagues or little league…more important than baseball teams or basketball teams or cheerleading squads…more important than a hot date or a weekend at the lake!
The reason I am starting this sermon like this is that the members of the church will never be motivated to become actively involved in the ministries of the church until the church becomes as important in their minds as it is in the mind of Christ. That’s why Paul wrote, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5, NKJV).
II. Every Member in Ministry
When Paul wrote to the church at Corinth, he made it abundantly clear that God expects every member of His church to function in some capacity of ministry just as every member of the human body is designed to function in some capacity to contribute to the health of the body. Notice what he wrote, “The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit. Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part” (I Corinthians 12:12-14, NLT). I see three important principles in these verses:
We must be careful that a “spiritual inferiority complex” among the members of the church doesn’t hinder them from functioning in the way God designed them to function. Paul warned about this when he wrote, “If the foot says, ‘I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,’ that does not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, ‘I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,’ would that make it any less a part of the body? If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?” (I Corinthians 12:15-17, NLT). We must not succumb to this way of thinking.
God says that every member of the body is important because they are there by His design! Notice how Paul explained it, “Our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. How strange a body would be if it had only one part! Yes, there are many parts, but only one body” (I Corinthians 12:18-20, NLT). Every member of the church is important because each member has been uniquely designed by God to fulfill a special function that contributes to the overall health of the body!
Another danger against which we must guard is that a “spiritual superiority complex” on the part of some members is not allowed to hinder other members from actively serving in the roles for which God has placed them in the body. Paul warned, “The eye can never say to the hand, ‘I don’t need you.’ The head can’t say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you.’ In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary. And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, while the more honorable parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity” (I Corinthians 12:21-24, NLT). These verses reveal to me that every member is necessary for the health of the body and church leaders should provide whatever amount of training and equipping for ministry is needed for every member of the church—some need more…some need less, but every member needs to be equipped for ministry!
By guarding against both a “spiritual inferiority complex” and a “spiritual superiority complex” among its members every church can become a healthy, vibrant church with all of its members functioning in their God-given roles. Paul concluded this section of Scripture by describing a healthy church. He wrote, “This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other. If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad. All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it” (I Corinthians 12:25-27, NLT).
There are three essentials for a church to become an “Every Member in Ministry” church. Let’s conclude our time together today by looking briefly at each of these three essentials.
Develop People Who Love God. Jesus said that this is the very most important characteristic that His followers can develop. He said it when answering a question posed by a Pharisaical Lawyer. Matthew recorded the scene, “One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:35-38, NIV). People, who do not genuinely love God, will not be committed to ministering for Him!
Develop People Who Love People. Jesus said that this is the second most important characteristic that His followers can develop. He continued His discussion with the lawyer by saying, “The second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Matthew 22:39, NIV). People who don’t love people will not consistently minister to people!
Develop People Who “See” People. One of the characteristics that distinguished Jesus from everyone else that ever lived was His uncanny ability to “see” people in terms of who they really were and what they really needed. In fact, the thing that motivated Him to preach “The Sermon on the Mount” was this ability to see people in terms of their needs. Matthew described the scene that transpired moments before He began to preach that famous sermon. He wrote, “When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them” (Matthew 5:1-2, NIV). As more and more people in the church become “people who ‘see’ people,” new and exciting ministries will emerge! And as more ministries emerge in the church, we move ever closer to becoming an “Every Member in Ministry” church!
We are never more like Jesus than when we are deeply involved in ministry. When He paused long enough to give a description of His mission on Earth, Jesus said, “The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28, KJV).
Did you get that? Jesus’ mission on Earth was “to minister.” He said, “The Son of man came…to minister.” Our purpose on Earth should be the same as His—“to minister!” That means that every member of the church should be involved in some capacity of ministry.
Bring a friend to church next week!
Please join us!!
Sunday service starts at 10am
1/2 mile south of Holcomb on Hwy 25.
Look for the BIG HOUSE
Sunday Service Times
Morning Worship: 10:00 a.m.
M*PACT Kidz: 10:00 a.m.
Helping Hands: 6:00 p.m.
ONE WAY Youth: 6:00 p.m.