About Jesus - Steve (Stephen) Sweetman

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Diversity Doesn't Mean Inclusivity  


The New Testament, especially 1 Corinthians 12, teaches diversity within unity as being basic to the Body of Christ.  Each one of us is a separate, different, distinct, and vital person in the Body of Christ, the church.  We function in our own unique capacity along with others for the good health of Jesus' earthly body.  Each one of us views things from our own God-given personality and placement in Christ's body, and thus, we carry out our responsibilities accordingly.     


Think of it this way.  A finger on your hand sees things from a much different perspective than a toe on your foot.  Both your finger and your toe have their distinct placement and function in your body.  You don't expect your toe to function as a finger or your finger as a toe.  If that were the case, you would be severely disabled and both your toe and your finger would be unable to receive needed impulses from your brain. 


In order for the Body of Christ to actually be Jesus' earthly expression of who He is, we must allow each other to be who Jesus wants us to be.  We must not view others through the lens of who we are and expect them to function as we function.  That is the nature of a human body and it is the nature of Christ's earthly body, but let's remember this.  The church is Jesus' earthy body, so there are limitations to the diverse nature of individual body parts within Jesus' earthly body.    


Jesus is the head of His body as seen in Ephesians 4:15.  For this reason, He does not tolerate anything that misrepresents who He is existing within His earthly body.  That means the Body of Christ, the church, is exclusive, and its exclusivity is based on the very nature and essence of Jesus.  For this reason the apostle Paul told the Corinthian believers to disassociate with a man who was engaging in sexual relations with his step-mother (1 Corinthians 5:11).  For this reason Jesus was angered with the church at Pergamum for allowing heretical teachers in its midst (Revelation 2:14 -16).  For this reason Jesus was upset with the church at Thyatira who allowed a prophetess to lead men into sexual immorality (Revelation 2:20).  For this reason Jesus was ready to vomit the church at Laodicea out of His mouth for adulterating itself with excessive wealth (Revelation 3:16 - 18).  I could go on and on, but I think you get my point.  Church is an exclusive body of believers who desire to act on every impulse that emanates from its head, the Lord Jesus Christ.  To put it bluntly; if Jesus has called you to be a male body part in His body, I doubt if He would be happy with you becoming a female body part in His body.  That may sound weird, but we see such body-part transformations in what is commonly called church today.     


When it comes to church, inclusivity has its limitations because inclusivity is defined by the very nature and essence of Jesus, and thus, anything that is not consistent with who Jesus is, is excluded from Jesus' earthly body, the church.                      

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