May 21, 2018: 1 Corinthians 1:11-13. The Undivided Christ.

1 Corinthians 1:11-13. For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I follow Paul,” or “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Cephas,” or “I follow Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided?

Is Christ divided?

What an amazing question rooted in an even more amazing truth. The Corinthian church has a lot of problems, not the least of which is gross division. Our union with Christ means that when we cause division in the church it is as if we are trying to tear Christ apart. Because Christ is in us and we are all collectively in Christ, then to divide the church is to divide Christ.

But is Christ actually divided? Of course he’s not. Therefore we cannot divide the church, not really. The church is the body of Christ and since he cannot be divided, it cannot be divided.

The question also teaches us by implication that each Christian has all of Christ equally. Christ cannot be divided, therefore he is not divided up with a little tiny bit of him in each believer. No, each believer has all of Christ.

You see when we really grab hold of “To live is Christ,” and our union with Christ, we begin to realize that it defines and impacts everything we do in every sphere of life. For Paul this union with Christ was now the motivation for all ethical behavior, not the law. Paul does not appeal to the law to gain unity in the church. He appeals to their union with Christ.

“To live is Christ” means that Jesus is the source of our life, not just individually but corporately. Therefore unity must be the core characteristic of the church. As we contemplate our union with Christ and his life of love and mercy in us, we can live from this love and mercy. Together we can find unity of purpose and we can make unity our purpose as the church. Why? Because our unity displays Christ to the world.

Do you believe that you have all of Christ, and not just a little bit of him? Are you striving from your union with Christ for unity in your church? Or are you divisive?

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