How Should the Body of Christ Respond When One of its Members is Suffering?

In his book, True Community: The Biblical Practice of Koinonia, Jerry Bridges has a great quote concerning the experiential aspect of Christian fellowship.  In it he illustrates what should characterize the body of Christ whenever one of its members is suffering – we should behave like our physical bodies do:

Can you imagine the ear making the following comment to the eyes, “Say, did you hear about the serious trouble the foot is having?  My, my,images (35)isn’t it too bad?  The foot surely ought to get his act together.”  No, no, our bodies don’t behave that way at all!  Instead the entire body cries out, “My foot hurts!  I feel awful!”

Why does the body hurt when only one part is injured?  It is because all the parts of the body make up one indivisible whole.  And when one part hurts, no matter what the reason, the restorative powers of the entire body are brought to bear on that hurting member.  Rather than attacking that suffering part or ignoring the problem, the rest of the body demonstrates concern for the part that hurts.  This is the way the body of Christ should function.

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About Brent Osterberg

Ransomed sinner, husband to Keri, father to the kiddos three, associate pastor at Calvary Bible Church in Fort Worth, TX, and lover of most things epic. View all posts by Brent Osterberg

2 responses to “How Should the Body of Christ Respond When One of its Members is Suffering?

  • Ken Basinger

    Good encouragement Brent. We live in a christian culture that sees itself too much as individuals rather than connected, committed, and accountable people. I’m trying to retrain my thinking and this helped!

  • brywieb

    There is a huge difference between a church gathering to have fellowship and the Church gathering because they have fellowship! May Father bless you in your journey! Keep your peace!

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