“And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” – Ephesians 4:11-16
1 Corinthians 12:27 tells us that we are the body of Christ. Hebrews 10:10 tells us that Jesus’s body was offered for our transgressions once and for all, a perfect sacrifice, broken once and never to be broken again. So why then do we continue to divide the body of Christ?
I’m not talking about communion here, the breaking of bread as a remembrance of the breaking of Christ body (who was the bread of life) was commanded to be done by Christ. Not as an on going sacrament, but rather in remembrance, reverence, and humble appreciation of what He has already done. What I am talking about here, however, is something God told us never to do. Divide the body of Christ.
“Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” – 1 Corinthians 1:10
Continuing on from this verse we read an account of Paul doing his utmost to put a halt to the first vestiges of denominationalism and disunity. Believers were beginning to be divided under by such things as who they followed, whom they were baptized by, and what they were taught. Paul was not at all pleased with this, saying in verse 13: “Is Christ divided?”.
Though many of the denominations we have today had their origins in great moves of God by mighty men of faith, God (nor these humble men) ever intended for the body of Christ’s believers to be divided by them. They never wanted to be the end of one’s search for the deeper things of God, but rather they had hoped to be a stepping stone of growth in our personal journey as we ever pursue God’s heart, wisdom, and will. However, the devil has played a cruel trick on God’s people that has kept them divided and weak. He has pitted one believer against another in thought and deed and severed the hands from the feet from the eyes from the ears, and thus has handicapped the body from functioning fitly together as it was designed to by God.
Let us not be holden to man, traditions, or denominations but to the entirety of the Word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit of God. Let us seek to ever grow in love, compassion, gifting, knowledge, and closeness with God. Let us follow His Words, leadings, instructions, and teachings where ever they may send us. Let us work together in unity with other believers as the Spirit of God leads for the perfecting of the saints. After all, there will be no denominations in Heaven, only those who obeyed the will of the Father.
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. .” – Matthew 7:21
“Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. 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. 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. For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body. 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. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary: And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.” – 1 Corinthians 12:4-31