Let's Go Back to the Bible

Doing My Part in the Church

When I have a job to do, it usually helps if I break it down into measurable parts. Looking at the task or undertaking as a whole can be daunting. Many of us feel the same way when it comes to the work of the church. “There is so much to do!”  “How will I ever do that?” Let’s look at a passage that will help us put things in perspective.

Ephesians 4:11-16 begins by listing those who are laboring in the church. Of those mentioned, we have pastors (elders, shepherds), evangelists (preachers) and teachers with us today. The text tells us that their job is for the “equipping of the saints.” The end result of this equipping is the “work of service” or ministry. We are all to serve and minister to one another, to the “building up of the body” (v. 12), that is, by definition, edification. The goal of that edification is stated in verse 13 as “unity of the faith,” “knowledge of the son of God,” and growth into a “mature man.”  That “mature man” is measured by “the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.”

Verse 14 tells us that this kind of maturity keeps us from being spiritual children that are “tossed here and there by every wind of doctrine.” There are a lot of immature people that have not grown to the point that they can stand on their own two feet spiritually. The work of the body is to help supply that growth. We do not criticize, marginalize or demoralize the weak. Rather, “speaking the truth in love,” we are to help them “grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head.”

Here is where we can do our part. With Christ as the head, origin and anchor, the “whole body” is “fitted and held together by what every joint supplies” (v. 16). The joint in this context infers the individual member of the body, because the text goes on to say, “according to the proper working of each individual part.” The word “proper” in verse 16 is where we get the words “metered” or “measured.” The literal idea is “according to the measured working of each individual part.”

So, now you may be asking, “Where are you going with this?” What the text tells us is that when we look at the overall task and work of the church we do not need to be discouraged by the enormity of the task. We are to do our metered and measured part. When all are doing their part for the work, God tells us that it “causes growth of the body for the building of itself up in love” (v. 16).  So, when you do what you know is right to do right now, you are helping work towards the growth and edification of the body of Christ.