The Light of Christ Journey

Encouraging people on their journey with Christ

Is church about the team or the individual? We live in a country that prizes rugged individualism. Herbert Hoover coined this term and referred to individuals as self-reliant and independent from control. This originally referred to politics, but this thought has infiltrated the church.[1]

The church at Corinth had multiple divisions, competition, and jealousy. Paul addressed these problems, and his comments are still valid today. Paul considered the church to be different parts of the body. In another letter, Paul explained that Christ is the head of this body. Ephesians 1: 22 God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. 23 And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself.[2]

Paul Explained the Team as a Body

1 Corinthians 12: 12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. 13 Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.

14 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. 15 If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything? [3]

We Need the Team

No one individual can have all the gifts. God has designed us to be interdependent, just as parts of the body. God has a sense of humor as we picture an eye, ear, or hand trying to be whole. We know that isn’t possible. We may be able to walk on our hands, but we still need our feet. If we have learned anything in the past three years, it is that we need each other.

Unfortunately, churches are made of sinners who may become offended by each other. I have observed many who choose to believe but not be part of a church. These people may still be saved but are missing out on many blessings.

What is the solution? Paul tells us in the flow of thought between 1 Corinthians 12 -14. First, Paul speaks of gifts and part of the body, then love, then practical use of spiritual gifts. There is a reason the love chapter is here. We need the love of Christ provided through the power of the Holy Spirit to become the body of Christ. Only with the love that Jesus provides can forgiveness, mercy, and grace unite the body of Christ as a team.

Is the church a team or the individual? To learn more, listen here:


[2-3] Tyndale House Publishers. (2015). Holy Bible: New Living Translation . Tyndale House Publishers.

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