I like the analogy of the concert when used in illustrating how Christians ought to interact with each other, as individually, we play our “instruments”. The Apostle Paul validates this analogy, but takes it to its highest level in Romans 12:3-8 and 1 Corinthians 12, when he employs the imagery of the human body. Then I got to reflecting on the differences between this analogy and the spiritual reality. One such difference jumped out at me. But first, let us re-enforce two similarities.
The first is that both in the concert band and in the human body, every instrument is custom built to optimally perform a specific function. For sure, if there is no trumpet, then a saxophone can help out. Some people, with or without choice, are known to walk on their hands. But we all agree that no instrument can trumpet as well as a trumpet, and no body-part can walk as well as feet. In the same way, each of the spiritual and physical gifts that God has given us is unique, especially when exercised by us.
The second similarity is that both the concert band and the human body has a conductor, or a brain in our head, that controls the timing and intensity of the performance of each member. The conductor dictates whether we hear a diminuendo or crescendo. The brain dictates whether the feet walk or run. Similarly, as we are told in Colossians 1:8, Jesus Christ is the Head of His Body of Believers which is all of us who have been saved and redeemed by Him. God’s Holy Spirit stands ready to conduct our individual practiced performances so as to produce a beautifully harmonious and melodious world-class performance that benefits the whole body.
But there is a major difference. In the human body, for as long as a member is alive, it is hard-wired to obey the instructions of the brain in the head. The hand does not have an independent brain, and neither does the foot. But in the Body of Christ, each of us as members, has a brain, a mind, and a will that we can choose to operate independently of, or dependently on the instructions of our Head, Jesus Christ. It is this difference that creates the urgency in Romans 12:1 – “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to OFFER YOUR BODIES AS A LIVING SACRIFICE, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.”
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