21 January 2023
The title is the point: We want to see the Lord's Body healed.
It's not as if we can do this, but we can participate in the Father's own work. Never forget that we are just along for the ride. He allows us to participate in His work. And He most certainly would like to see the Body healed, but it has to be on His terms, in His way.
We should learn to think of the sickness as defilement. Healing the Body is cleaning it. Naturally, you have your best touch on your own life, so that's where the healing begins. There's really nothing you can do for anyone else except to point out defilement that should be obvious and encourage them to make progress on the cleansing, but the cleansing is via submission. The power to change is not in our hands, but in the Lord's. He stands ready to cleanse anyone who submits, and then He empowers the changes.
How much you enjoy it depends on how much you can volunteer for it. It's not as if He waits on you regarding every issue. There are plenty of times He will act unilaterally. If you are seeking the cleansing, then it gets easier as you get accustomed to the way He works. It's not exactly the same for any two of us, but it can be quite similar. The point is that you recognize one glaring truth: As long as we are living here, the job of cleansing is never done until He takes you Home.
The two major issues will always be the inherent hostility of our culture to moral purity, and with that, the very real need for ruling your life from your heart. That's equivalent to saying "living by your convictions" -- your convictions are rooted in your heart. It's not as if God simply wrote something there and you need to find it. Conviction is a living connection that steers your actions and words to meet the context. Conviction is alive and it needs nurturing. Pay attention and obey it; that's how you nurture conviction.
This is what leads to all my blather about dissolving the distinctions between clergy and laity. That whole set-up is an elitist plot to maintain control and to plunder the people. The Bible depicts people who become shepherds because they can't avoid it. Elders embrace the divine calling as a season of life. Yes, those who perform priestly activities should not have to do other work, if you can make it that way. But it's not that the person is very special; it's the nature of the role. There is no longer an inherited priesthood under the Covenant of Christ; it's for people who know the Lord has called them to it, and their talents match the needs of your community.
The Body's problem right now is the artificial divide between leadership and the rest of the community. It's led to all kinds of abuses and defilement. A faith community should never be larger than a hundred or so; that's as many as any elder should shepherd. There's nothing wrong with several small communities coordinating, but the actual weekly business of a church should be confined to the smaller bodies. When a given community grows too far beyond that threshold, it's time to spin off another body. Big conglomerate organizations with massive budgets and real estate holdings defile the Body with too many worldly concerns.
The Lord is shaking His Body to knock loose those who don't belong. It has nothing to with going to Heaven or Hell; the question is who will represent Him in this life. There are certain things He wants to see; that's why we have a written Covenant code. He wants people to embrace the Covenant with their hearts. That's where His glory stands.
You can't get there by yourself. Your self-discipline means nothing if you haven't first absorbed His discipline. You must pray His cleansing power into your existence. Only then do you stand in a place to pray for that cleansing power on the rest of His Body.
Let's pray for more of His eternal children to find this glory.
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