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Sep 26, 2021

Care for One Another

Care for One Another

Passage: 1 Corinthians 12:25-26

Speaker: Nicholas Lee

Series: Win-Win

Care For One Another | 1 Corinthians 12:25-26 September 26, 2021 Nicholas Lee

1 Corinthians 12:25-26
The Message

25-26 The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part, the parts we mention and the parts we don’t, the parts we see and the parts we don’t. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance.

1 CORINTHIANS 12:25-26

25 that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice together with it.

Over the last three weeks we have turned our attention to the concept/reality of a Win/Win. It seems that while we are in church, we accept the idea of situations that become a win/win for everyone, but when we leave the building, we suddenly have a change in our mindset. We subscribe to a “Kingdom Reality” and a “Reality, Reality.” We begin to believe that there must be winners and losers. We claim that Kingdom Reality is a great concept that might occur one day, but as the great philosopher Ricky Bobby once said, “If you’re not first, you’re last.” But we are called to live in such a way that we bring Kingdom Reality to earth. 

In 1 Corinthians 12 the Apostle Paul is addressing the church both those in Corinth and all of us today. We will be focusing most of our attention on verses 25 and 26, but theses verses are proceeded by some important instructions to the church on how to live and bring the Kingdom Reality to fruition. Paul uses a well-known formula in the ancient to explain how the body of Christ should see itself and function. Ancient writers and speakers had been using the human body to explain how and organization or group of people should function. Paul tells the church that just like the human body, the church was made up of many parts. Although some were more visible than others, each part of the body (the church) is important to the function. Yes, it is true that you may be able to survive if you lose one part of your body, but the body functions best when all the parts are working together. It would be ridiculous if the head said to the feet, I have no need of you. It may be possible for the head to function in some capacity, but without the feet the head loses a major part of its effectiveness. Verse 14 in the message translation explains that the body consists of many members not just one, and this in turn makes us all more significant not less. In essence we are better together. 

In verses 25-26 Paul acknowledges the symbiotic nature of the church. The definition given to the Symbiotic in Websters dictionary is stated this way, “A mutually beneficial relationship between different people or groups.” This can mean simply that the relationship that is developed between many members ties them to each other and connects in such a way that there is a Win/Win for everyone involved. Here is what verse 25-26 says to us: 25 that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice together with it.

Paul expresses two key values for us to live by as the church today. The first is the reality that each of us should care for one another in a specific way. The second is the reality that we are connected in such a way that when one of us suffers we all suffer and when one rejoices, we should in fact rejoice with each other. 

First, we address the reality that care should be given to each member of the body in on the same level. 

  1. No matter a member’s position or place they should receive the same kind of care. Visibility should make us give more care for a person.
  2. We should care for each other in the same way we would hope to be cared for, and we should care for each other the same way we should care for ourselves.
  3. We should all be in the care business*.

Secondly, Paul tells us that when one of us suffers we all should suffer along with them. The real question that this reality should make us ask is,” What happens when we don’t suffer with those who suffer?” There is a real destructive thing that can happen to us all when we don’t love in this way. When we allow our brothers and sisters to suffer and mourn without us alongside of them we miss both the suffering and the ability to be a part of the healing. 

Dr. Martin Luther King jr. explained our connection this way,” We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever effects one directly affects us all indirectly.