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“Christians… so unlike Christ” ~Gandhi


I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. ~Mahatma Gandhi.

Jesus is returning for a Spotless Bride; a bride that knows her identity in Him; a bride that knows her Bridegroom intimately; a bride that has her oil lamp full (see Matthew 25). But she is not there yet. [For those of you not familiar with the bridal symbolism, the Bride of Christ is the Church.]

The Inquisition

Despite the lessons learned during the bloodshed suffered by innocents at the hands of the Church during the Spanish Inquisition and other religious atrocities, many still have not learned from the lessons of this tragic history. This still has potential to express itself, even through enlightened human beings today… Christian or not. It is a human tendency to want to control others and exert one’s preeminence over someone else, proving one is right while others are wrong. This is seen on a small to medium scale in all of our every day lives.

What perplexes me about those brutal times, though, is how the clergy had to have known they were not following Christ’s example in what they were doing. Had they only asked themselves the question… “At what point did Jesus ever persecute, imprison, torture, or kill anyone for any reason whatsoever?” they might have got a clue. No wonder so many fell away from having any association with Christ whatsoever.

While it is true that Christians are not killing one another today and unlike many in the past, most of them now have access to a Bible to keep themselves and the Church accountable to God’s Word, sometimes there is still strife, gossip, jealousy, prejudice, and offense operating among the brethren.  Jesus said to be angry with anyone puts us in danger of judgment! He also said having disdain or scorn for someone makes us answerable, as well. But the offense that really carries the heaviest fine is calling someone a fool. That puts one in danger of hell fire (see Matthew 5:22). If you study further, you will see why it is not a good idea to subject our hearts to such feelings and actions…

The Church has an Autoimmune Disease?

The twelve apostles didn’t just refer to the Church as the Bride of Christ, they also referred to the Church as the Body of Christ.[1] Some of the members in the Body of Christ still confuse their brothers and sisters, with the enemy. These are not just members of Jesus’ OWN Body, but the members of our body as well, as follows, “There should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it” (1 Corinthians 12:25-26).  We know that a house divided against itself cannot stand. A physical body needs all of its parts to be whole and healthy.

[While the metaphors of the Bride and Body of Christ are not really metaphors, they are mystical realities, I will refer to them as metaphors in this blog from time to time for convenience.]

Comparing the Church to the Body of Christ is significant because when members of the Body of Christ turn the other members of His Body into their enemies, Christ’s Body is basically afflicted with an autoimmune disorder!

“What?” you may ask. “Christ is perfect, He cannot get sick!” True… but Christ was able to bleed when He was scourged and He was able to die when He was crucified, was He not? Furthermore, His affliction came at the hands of His own brothers and sisters who should have recognized who He was. Isn’t it interesting how even one of his own disciples betrayed him at the celebration of their own unity, the Communion/Passover Supper! Consequently, it was no accident, then, that Jesus prayed for Christian unity at that point in time as well (see John 17:21-23)

Collectively, members of Christ’s Church now represent His Physical Body on Earth. They are supposed to bring His Love to the world and become His representatives on Earth. They are made in His Image so we are all to be reflections of Him! Yet He continues to be tortured and scourged by the members of His own Body.

The Body Attacks Its Own Nerves and Cripples It

The Body Attacks its Own Nerves and Cripples it

An autoimmune disorder happens when the human body’s natural defenses become confused and turn in on itself rather than upon its true enemies, germs. When this happens, it slowly eats away at its own tissues, particularly its cartilage and “connective” tissues, which hold it together and give it movement (rheumatoid arthritis, allergies). In some cases it turns on its own organs (lupus). Other times, it attacks its own nerves (multiple sclerosis). Left untreated, the human body becomes crippled and dies an early death!  Isn’t that the state we have all watched our churches get into from time to time?

Jesus was letting His prophets know that the time is very near for His return and He means to have a spotless Bride.  He says what you do to the “least of these”  you also do to Him, as follows:

You disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked that a murderer be released to you. You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. By faith in the name of Jesus, this [crippled] man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has given this complete healing to him, as you can all see.

Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer.

So repent (change your mind and purpose); turn around and return [to God], that your sins may be erased (blotted out, wiped clean), that times of refreshing (of recovering from the effects of heat, of reviving with fresh air) may come from the presence of the Lord;

…that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus. He must remain in heaven until the time for the complete restoration of all that God spoke by the mouth of all His holy prophets for ages past [from the most ancient time in the memory of man]. (Acts 3:14-21)

It is significant to understand that the whole purpose behind the sacrament of Communion or Holy Eucharist was to bring wholeness to us physically, emotionally, spiritually, and relationally.  It is a regular celebration of His sacrifice that helps us to remember when we need forgiveness for our sins which separate us from our Lifegiver or when we have an offense against someone within the Body of the Lifegiver.

Healing in the Holy Eucharist (i.e., Lord’s Supper/Communion)

Ever wonder why those who partake of His Body and Blood get sick and die if they partake unworthily?[2] There is an interesting correlation here to this concept of the Body of Christ having an autoimmune disease. It bespeaks of the reason Christian unity is so important. When we are in sin we get sick, whether that be a sin against God, ourselves, or someone else. As members of His Body we make the whole body sick when we are not united because we are told what affects one member also affects everyone; every member is important to the functioning of a whole and healthy body.[3] This is why, to partake of this meal worthily, we must seek the forgiveness of those we have offended lest we, ourselves, get sick and die.[4] If you are sick, you may want to consider whether you have an offense or have offended someone. It is not so strange to understand why it is that celebrating Communion was regularly practiced to bring healing to individual Christians as well.

This meal has always been connected to bringing about healing to our individual bodies because the sin which brings to all of humanity death and disease was cleansed by His Blood[4] and healed by His stripes[5]; that is, to those who are able to have the faith to cross that Bridge of Trust (the Cross) and reconnect and “commune” with our Lifegiver. Partaking in this meal celebrates this act of love that was meant to win back the suspicious hearts of humanity, to reestablish communion or unity between God and humanity. In doing so, we are healed emotionally of both the true and false, toxic shame that distorts our identities and causes us to remain immature and prideful. Our healing through intimacy with God brings about greater communion between human beings as well.

A Disease that Attacks it's Own Joints Rendering it Crippled

The Body Attacks its Own Joints Rendering itself Crippled

Today Jesus’ Bride continues to live in a diseased state.  She is not walking in the fullness of her identity as the royal Bride of Christ nor is she walking in her Kingdom mandate to stay united so that the world may believe in the Love of God demonstrated to us through Christ. As you see from the verse of Scripture above, heaven will retain Jesus until the time for the complete restoration of all that has God spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets in ages past.

One of those things He spoke of that is being restored before His return is found in Isaiah 61:1 & 4:

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me,
Because the LORD has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
And the opening of the prison to those who are bound

And they shall rebuild the old ruins,
They shall raise up the former desolations,
And they shall repair the ruined cities,
The desolations of many generations.

So let us ever endeavor to love one another for God is love. Let us learn how by drawing ever closer to Christ, “For [Christ] holds the whole body together with its joints and ligaments, and it grows as God nourishes it.” (Colossians 2:19)

God’s Provision: The Spirit of Elijah has Come!

Jesus is releasing new revelation onto the earth that will help heal the Church of its religious pride and disunity.  That revelation has been put into my book, Accelerated Transformation: Maturity, Intimacy, and Unity through Emotional Healing. I also plan to include parts of it in this blog as well. This is part of the Spirit of Elijah that has returned to the earth to announce Christ’s Second Coming…

See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.  He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.  (Malachi 4:5-6)

The sickness the Body of Christ is experiencing in the spiritual realm is the same sickness many Christians are actually facing in the physical realm today. Sadly, many Christians are completely unaware that they are becoming ill and dying due to their offenses, anger, or disdain for others. They are displaying the same attitudes that the religious leaders that crucified Jesus held. They assume they are not healed simply because they lack faith when, indeed, they may be experiencing their afflictions either because of their attitudes towards others, themselves, or they may be in a church that does. I cannot claim this is true in all cases, but it is worth praying about and looking into. There are sometimes genetic and environmental factors at play, too. In those cases, Christ can heal them.

What is it that causes us to turn on the members of our own body? Well, we know that our accuser, Satan, is walking around looking for whomever he may devour. He is called “The Accuser of the Brethren” for that reason. This is his primary weapon of choice. He uses “the sin principle” operating within us to become his puppets! If our hearts have not been healed of the wounds that cause us to react whenever these hot buttons are pushed, Satan has succeeded in having us injure someone… usually someone we care for or love.

This blog is dedicated to waking up the Body of Christ to this deception so that the Church may be healed and finally become a Bride without Spot or wrinkle.

—————–

References:

1. See, most importantly, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31, and also, for example, Romans 12:5, 1 Corinthians 6:15, 1 Corinthians 10:17Ephesians 4:12, Ephesians 5:30, Colossians 1:18, Colossians 1:24, & Colossians 2:19

2. For example, Matthew 5:23-26, 1 Corinthians 11:23-30

3. For example, 1 Corinthains 12:20-27

4. See, for example, Hebrews 9:13-17, & 1 John 1:6-8

5. For example, Isaiah 53:4-6 & 1 Peter 2:23-25

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© Tracey Nelson, M.Ed.

Permissions: You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in any format provided that you do not alter the wording in any way and do not charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. For web posting, a link to this document on our website is preferred. Any exceptions to the above must be approved by The Spotless Bride Ministries.

Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: Written by Tracey Nelson, M.Ed., author of Accelerated Transformation, © Feb. 16, 2009 from: The Spotless Bride Blog, a blog to “Heal the Heart of Disunity” (Some material on blog such as shared articles, images, songs, & videos not owned by author).

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One Comment leave one →
  1. aaronlewis permalink
    February 16, 2009 10:23 pm

    Great Post, the truth is sometimes hard to hear.

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