Columns

The relationship involves others

Romans 12:3-21.Believers in Christ are in relationship with Christ Jesus and with one another. This relationship comes into effect immediately someone receives Christ as his Lord and personal Saviour. For that person a new creation has come (2 Cor. 5:17). The identity of that person has changed from his Adamic and fallen nature to the righteousness of Christ. This happens to anyone who makes a decision to follow Jesus. You are not alone in this new identity but also with others in similar relationship with Christ. “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:26,27). Interwoven connection and unity of believers is realised in Christ, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised – slave nor free, but Christ is all and all (Col.3:11).
A personal relationship with Christ connects us to others who also have personal relationship with Christ hence our relationship with Christ though personal is not meant to be private, secret or not to be shared with others. A useful picture is the networking system many join to grow a product. In that network your financial success is built on your connecting many others who in turn connect others into marketing the product and it grows and benefits all at different levels. But Christians are different people who come together to form the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:27), hence are in relationship and connected with each other to help one another joyful to accomplish their destiny in the Lord towards eternity.
God sees us as individuals as well as one body Romans 12:5;1 Cor. 12:27, “so we, though many, are one body in Christ and individually members one of another”. The challenge sometimes is the consistency in paying attention to the whole body instead of focus on individual members. If we see ourselves as God sees us, the way we view our relationship with others will change. We shall be more loving and caring and humble and less selfish but instead looking out for what is the best for others in our midst. Two things about the Ephesians Christians mentioned by Apostle Paul was their faith in Christ Jesus as well as their love for all the saints (Ephesians 1:15). Since we are in relationship with one another because of Christ, let’s know we need one another in many ways. Although we are in relationship with other Christians, we are not to take part in the unfruitful works of darkness and the sins of others (Eph. 5:11).
Christ died for all therefore we should no longer live for ourselves, we must die to selfishness in order to selflessly live for him (2 Cor. 5:15).The outcome of our love for God is determined by the extent you have been accountable to Christ and to one another. Our love for Jesus should drive our love for others for our personal relationship with Jesus equips us for the work of service in other relationships in our church, family, work place, neighbourhood and service for those who are outside of Christ. Christians encounter struggles and various battles including in their finances, business setbacks, family discords, decline in health, and other challenges. Some of these battles can change someone’s perception of his Christian heritage. God’s word says:“See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firm to the very end” (Heb. 3:12-14). This is a huge responsibility, it will require obeying God’s word to pray for one another James 5: 16; stir up one another to love and good works Heb.10:24. We’re called to be patient and to forgive one another, to submit to one another 1 Peter 5:5; bear one another’s burden Gal. 6:2; consider others better than yourselves Phil. 2:3;to build up and encourage one another 1 Thess. 5:11; to confess your faults to one another James 5:16; through love serve one another Gal. 5:13; look to the interests of one another Phil. 2:4. We are to show hospitality and use the gifts God has given us for the benefit of one another 1 Peter 4:9, 10,and to be of the same mind toward one another Rom, 12:16. We are also reminded in Hebrews 10:25, “Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another… and all the more as you see the Day approaching”.

About the author

Christian Voice