12 For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ. 13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:12–13, NKJV).
Scripture says the body of Christ is His church (Eph. 1:22-23). There is one church, one body, and Christ is its head and Savior (Eph. 1:22; 4:4; 5:23). Christ’s body is composed of those baptized into it. Each sinner is saved and added by the Lord to His church when he follows the Spirit’s teaching in baptism (Acts 2:37-38, 40-41, 47). Without a doubt, Christ’s church is composed of Christians. Each Christian is a member of His body. Yet, the practices and doctrines of men divided the church, producing many denominations (1 Cor. 1:10-13; Rom. 16:17). These denominations now tell us to “choose the church of your choice” and say the church of Christ is composed of churches (i.e., Reformed, Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, Evangelical, etc.), and the important thing is Christ, not the church. Today’s passage denies this offer and explanation. Individuals are “baptized into one body,” churches are not (v. 13). “All the members” of the “one body” are those baptized into it (v. 12-13). The “members” of the “one body” in today’s passage are Christians, not churches (i.e., denominations). A self-serving corruption of this passage’s context concludes Christ’s body is composed of churches (see 1 Cor. 12:11, 14-27, esp. v. 27; Rom. 12:5). Jesus built His church (Matt. 16:18; Acts 2:47). Men have built their churches. Of which are you a member? Which one do you suppose prevails against the power of sin and death (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 5:23, 25-27)?
“I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.” (John 17:4, NKJV)
Jesus finished His redemptive work (Sword Tips #2133). Yet, people have devised doctrines that effectively deny this truth. 1) Jesus came to fulfill the law and the prophets (Matt. 5:17). Yet some churches (like the Seventh-day Adventist Church) listen to Moses and the prophets for their faith practices instead of hearing Jesus. This is false (Matt. 17:5; Heb. 1:1-2). 2) Jesus came to seek and save the lost (Lk. 19:10). Yet some churches (like the Baptist Church) reject His salvation by refusing the necessity of water baptism to be saved. This is false (Mk. 16:16; 1 Pet. 3:21). 3) Jesus came to give His life for all sinners (1 Tim. 2:6). Yet some churches (like the Reformed Church) teach limited atonement (Christ’s death only reaches those God elected for eternal life). This is false (Jno. 3:16; 1 Jno. 4:14). 4) Jesus came to preach the gospel of the kingdom (Matt. 4:23; Mk. 1:14-15). Yet some churches of Christ teach Jesus was only teaching Jews how to be good Jews. This is false (Matt. 9:35; Lk. 16:16; Matt. 5:31-32; 19:8-9). 5) Jesus came to be a king (Jno. 18:37). Yet many churches teach the premillennial doctrine that because the Jews rejected Jesus as their King, God withdrew the kingdom promise and substituted the church. They believe Jesus will return to earth in His kingdom in the future. This is false (Matt. 16:18-19; Mk. 9:1; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4; Col. 1:13; 1 Cor. 15:23-24). One denies the truth that Jesus finished His work by accepting doctrines that contradict His work and word. Let us go back to the New Testament of Jesus, to a time before the doctrines and creeds of men corrupted the purposes and the gospel of Jesus Christ, and please God by remaining in its truth (Gal. 1:6-10).
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (1 Peter 2:9, NKJV)
Peter describes Christians in vivid contrast to those who, “being disobedient to the word,” stumble upon Christ and His gospel (1 Peter 2:8). These descriptions drive to the heart of who we are as disciples of Christ. First, we are a “chosen generation” (“elect race,” ASV). Just as God chose Jesus Christ to be the “chief cornerstone” in Zion, a generation has been chosen to precious in the sight of God (1 Peter 2:4, 6). With foreknowledge, God elected this generation of “living stones” that compose God’s “spiritual house” (1 Peter 1:1-2; 2:5). Calvinist (Reformed) theology says God unconditionally chose (elected) the individuals who are saved. Millions have adopted and adapted this false teaching. Scripture says God “chose us in Him (Christ) before the foundation of the world,” not that God unconditionally chose each individual (Ephesians 1:4). God desires all to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). Those who meet His conditions are “accepted by Him” (Acts 10:35). These are saved in Christ and are a chosen race of people, “who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:13; 3:1-5). All who believe in Jesus Christ have the power to become a child of God, and thus be among this chosen generation (John 1:12).