“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.” Colossians 1:17-18
Jesus is the architect of the church. It’s His idea. Jesus is the guiding Spirit. Without Him the church cannot think, act, or be directed.
The first born of all creation comes into history to redeem Himself and to launch into the stream of human history – the church, the communities of redeemed people. Amazingly, Christ lives in the brokenness and weakness of His people in deep and full self-giving love that outlives all that sin and death can do.
Jesus is not only the first in time to live out this new spiritual relationship of God to man, but makes this new relationship possible for the multitudes who will follow Him. And all who follow become His body on earth – the church.
The church in its ultimate sense is not a group of self-organized people to perpetuate the teaching and practice of Jesus, but a living organism of which He is the life and spirit. The church is not a body of Christians, but the body of Christ.
He is supreme over creation, but supreme in the church. Distinct from creation, but identified with the church, whose life is fed by participation in the body of Christ. Christ as the head, is the conscious experience of every believer. Jesus, the head, prompts, guides and directs each member of the body.
He has the wisdom the church needs. He has a custom-crafted destiny for every faith community. He is the source and the object of all identity, mission, and fellowship that mark each local church. So what does that mean for you? Resist self-centered forces that seek to usurp the place of Christ in the church. Affirm gifted and humble leaders who let Jesus do His job. And set a personal example of God’s design in your life.
God, thank You that we are not wandering around on our own trying to do church. You are the director of my life and my community.