THE SIN OF MARGINALIZING OUR BROTHERS

To marginalize persons or groups is to place them in a position of marginal importance, influence, or power.  This is a a necessity in order to function in a competitive consumer culture of religious distinctives that divide the body of Christ into thousands of unique sects.

Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment.

This is found in the first chapter of Paul’s first letter to the infant church in Corinth.

For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you.  Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, “I am of Paul,” and “I of Apollos,” and “I of Cephas,” and “I of Christ.”  Has Christ been divided? 

If it was not okay then, how can we believe that it is okay now?

All who are born of God, a new creation in Christ, are our brothers and sisters, and are due our respect and honor.  We must affirm and legitimize all who affirm Jesus to be Lord of their lives.

We are exhorted to be subject to one another in the fear of Christ. We are to receive one another according to who we are in Christ.

Jesus said: “He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.  And whoever in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.”

Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord.  But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup.  For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly.  For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number  sleep.

Multitudes attend activities in various venues according to their preference, learn the cultural language of their distinctives, and live what really are spiritually barren and fruitless lives.

The Lord is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

We are to love and value all who are in Christ Jesus—all in whom He abides.  Many need a change of heart, a change of attitude,  that will allow them to authentically embrace all who our brothers and sisters.  Others carry the parts of truth that we do not yet know.  We need one another.

And for the fulfillment of God’s will on earth, we must stand together as one people, set apart to bring God’s kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. 

God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ, and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

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