Chapter # 12 Paragraph # 2 Study # 4
March 9, 2009
Lincolnton, N.C.

<572> Thesis: The function of the Body is grace-dependent and faith-enabled. Introduction: In Romans 12:4-5 the apostle Paul flatly declared that the reality of what God is doing "in Christ" in respect to every believer is in harmony with the analogy of the human body. This means that we know, by our awareness of our own bodies, what God is doing "in Christ". As every physical body is an integrated unit with multiple, and distinctive, parts, so also is the Body of Christ, and as no physical body functions worth a hoot when the "parts" are disengaged for whatever cause, neither does the Body of Christ function worth a hoot when His people are disengaged. Paul's burden for the Roman believers is that they will cooperatively produce a living witness to Christ in Rome because the level and quality of their participation in the Eternal Kingdom is directly tied to their participation in the Temporal Body of Christ. Paul had absolutely no interest in producing a temporal showcase, divorced from Eternal Experience. On the basis of these two realities -- that what God is doing is manifest by our physical bodies and that our cooperation with Him determines the level and quality of our participation in the coming Eternal Kingdom -- Paul launched into his specific instruction in verse six. This evening we are going to begin our consideration of his instruction.