God said through Paul that it is better to remain single, if possible, while at the same time God says we are to be church, which is two or more gathered together. My takeaway? When I’m being Church, my experience of Jesus is actually higher than during my individual devotional times. In our New Testament reality, there is a power seen when we come together that isn’t found when I am on my own.
“I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am.”
1 Corinthians 7:7-8
“And I tell you once more that if two of you on earth agree in asking for anything it will be granted to you by My Heavenly Father. For wherever two or three people come together in My name, I am there, right among you!”
Matthew 18:20 PHILLIPS
Body of Christ: Many as ONE
Wow, I always thought my most intimate moments with God were supposed to be just Him and me. But in Church, I am functioning as the Body of Christ. It isn’t as if I am not in the Body when I am on my own, but when we come together, our unified meeting is multiplied. While this doesn’t negate my need for a personal devotional life, it does emphasize the Church in importance. It’s not that I don’t have to maintain my individual relationship with the Father – I do. But more than that, the objective of Church is to bring my individual relationship into the unity of the Body of Christ.
I mean, brethren, the appointed time has been winding down and it has grown very short. From now on, let even those who have wives be as if they had none.
1 Corinthians 7:29 AMPC
We are Church
A Lone Ranger approach to our Christian lives is not the goal. I’m not a maverick in the Spirit; I am one in Christ’s body. I’m a treasure hunter looking for that Perfect Pearl, which is Him. In Christ we become one, individual members of His unified Body.
When I come together in the Body of Christ, I usually come full, not lacking. Not that there aren’t seasons where the Body feeds me, but this should be the exception, not the rule. Many come to church expecting to simply be fed, kind of a “dine and dash” scenario. Whereas the actual Body of Christ consists of members who have the fullness of His Life and seek to feed. The Spirit flowing in the Body of Christ allows fruit and Life to come from the newest convert to the most seasoned saint. Life is the byproduct of the Body of Christ.
Church is the Life of Christ: One Body under One Head. In Church the many members come together as One to let His Life express itself. This is Church! God’s call of us to remain single, whether married or not, is the untying of ourselves from any earthly entanglement so we are expressing His Life as Church to our world.
Now He is the head of the body which is composed of all Christian people. Life from nothing began through Him, and life from the dead began through Him, and He is, therefore, justly called the Lord of all. Colossians 1:18 Phillips