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Discovery Magazine 1/1/2002

The Body of Jesus

When we read the New Testament stories about Jesus, we see that He had a physical body just like you and I have. He had arms and legs, elbows and knees, a head and shoulders just like any normal human being. While He was on this Earth, His physical body did what He told it to do. If He wanted to walk to Jericho, then His brain told His legs to start walking. If He wanted to sing a song, then His brain sent the proper signals to vocal chords in His throat. He traveled hundreds of miles preaching, teaching, and performing miracles in His physical body. But in Acts 1:9 we read that the apostles watched Jesus’ body ascend into Heaven. How would Jesus be able to get the Gospel spread all over the world if His body was up in Heaven?

The Bible gives us the answer to that question. Although Jesus’ physical body with arms, legs, a head, and shoulders is no longer on this Earth, there is a body that does the work of Christ. The apostle Paul told the Colossian Christians that Christ “is the head of the body, the church.” Paul was saying that the church is the physical body of Christ on the Earth now, and that body does what Christ, its head, tells it to do. Just like Christ fed the hungry with His hands, today members of the church feed the hungry. And just as Christ preached the Gospel to many villages and cities, today preachers in the church are the “mouth” of Jesus who preach to the lost.

In 1 Corinthians 12:13-27, Paul gives us some funny pictures. Apparently, many of the members of the church in Corinth wanted to have the same talents as the other members. Paul showed them how silly this idea was by informing them that they were a body made up of different members. Can you imagine how funny a body would look if it were just one big eyeball? How could that body smell? Or wouldn’t it be funny if a body were just one big ear? How would that body be able to see? Paul was trying to make the point that every member of the church has different jobs and talents. When those members work together, like the parts of a human body, then they can accomplish great things. Let’s all do our part in the body of Christ so that we can spread His love all over the world!



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