Letter to the Brethren – July 21, 2020
Dear Brethren and Friends,
“Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually,” according to what the apostle Paul wrote to the Church (1 Corinthians 12:27). In this chapter, he uses the parts of the body as an analogy to show the different functions of people who make up the Church of God.
His point is that every Christian has a function and a vital role in the Church. After all, being Christ’s representatives in this world is the commissioned Work that is being done on His behalf in preparation for His return.
But there is more!
We are in training to rule with Jesus. World government at that time will be God’s government! Our conduct in the Church right now is—undoubtedly—much more important than we may possibly realize. That point comes home when we really take the time to carefully study what Jesus said to churches of God in chapters 2 and 3 of the Book of Revelation.
To each church He gave a very specific message addressing weaknesses and strengths He found in them. We are included for Jesus said that we are “‘to hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’” You might wonder why all of the messages apply to us? It is because we must learn to do what Jesus also said, and that is to “overcome”—any and everything that would cause us to fail in our calling. You see, in addition to being trained, we are being judged on how well we are doing:
“For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? Now ‘If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?’” (1 Peter 4:17-18).
The “ungodly and the sinner” will not appear in the first resurrection, but the righteous members of the Body of Christ will:
“‘Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.’ And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Then he said to me, ‘Write: “Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!”’ And he said to me, ‘These are the true sayings of God’” (Revelation 19:7-9).
In the written messages of Revelation 2 and 3, it is quite evident that terrible times of persecution arose against the Church, and some members were martyred while others weren’t. We know that great tribulation lies immediately ahead for this world, and we also know that the Church of God will face these times. Once again, some true Christians will be martyred for the name of Jesus Christ, and some will be given protection by God.
Many scriptures, many prophecies, are for our time, and we have this warning from Jesus, “‘Take heed that no one deceives you’” (Matthew 24:4). We are also told—as an absolute certainty—that some will fall away from the Church of God in our time (2 Thessalonians 2:3; Matthew 24:10-12). That has
happened, and more will leave the Church.
That doesn’t have to happen to any of us. Jesus gives us the key, saying, “‘But he who endures to the end shall be saved’” (Matthew 24:13).
Brethren, we who are members of God’s Church—the true Body of Jesus Christ—must love one another. We must follow the lead of God’s love for us and the love of Jesus Christ, who not only died for us but lives to powerfully watch over the Church.
“Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually”—don’t ever give up, don’t walk away from the Church of God and don’t reject Jesus Christ or God’s incomparable calling to everlasting life in His Kingdom!
In Christ’s Service,