July 7, 2017
(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)
Another Scripture that highlights One Anothering is Romans 12:3 through 5:
For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you,
not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think
soberly, as God as dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have
many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same
function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually
members of one another.
One Anothering is how we are to relate to one another as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ! We are looking at thirty-two words in the New King James Version that are paired with the words one another. We have covered 19 so far. So let’s continue…
• “…submitting to one another in the fear of God.” (Ephesians 5:21). The Greek word for submitting is υʽποτάσσω (pronounced hoop-ot-as’-so). In the context of Ephesians 5:21 through 6:9, Saint Paul is teaching the concept of submitting as it applies to husbands and wives, children, and servants and masters (employees and employers, we might say today). But in Ephesians 5:32 (as he concludes the example of submission between husbands and wives) the apostle declares, “This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” A mystery, as applied to Scriptural truth, is something that has been hidden, but is now revealed! (See for example Romans 11:25; I Corinthians 15:51; Colossians 1:27; I Timothy 3:16).
It is never a one-way submitting, as in it is too often interpreted in Ephesians 5:24: “Therefore just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.” Women have had a hard time with this concept for years! But (as discussed in the October 14, 2013 blog – Submission), the husband is submitting also to the wife as he obeys Ephesians 5:25: “Husbands, love you wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for it….” How did Jesus give Himself for the church? He gave His all! “…He laid down His life for us…” (I John 3:16). If a husband is willing to lay down his life for an unsubmitting wife, she will walk all over him! And if a wife is submitting herself to a husband who is unwilling to lay down his life for her, he will walk all over her! But if both are submitting to one another in the fear of God…, as it says in Ephesians 5:21, both will be lifted up, and the marriage relationship will be great!
Now, apply this to One Anothering: If we all are humbly submitting to one another in the fear of God, we will all together lift one another up, and the church will greatly benefit!
• “Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds…” (Colossians 3:9). The Greek word for lie is ψεύδομαι (pronounced psyoo’-dom-ahee), and meaning, “to utter an untruth or attempt to deceive by falsehood….” The old man is the sin nature with which every mother’s child is born! (See Romans 3;10, 23). Out of that old sin nature comes quite a list of sins – Paul calls them the works of the flesh in Galatians 5:19 through 21 (see also Romans 1:26-31; 3:10-18; II Timothy 3:2-4). Although lying is not mentioned in all the Scriptural lists of sins, it is definitely one of the works of the flesh manifested! (See John 8:44; Acts 5:3; Revelation 21:27).
As Christians we have been recreated (given a new nature – see II Corinthians 5:17) in the image of Christ (see Romans 8:29; Colossians 3:10). This new Godly nature cannot sin! (See I John 3:9; 5:18). All sin comes out of the old nature which we still possess! That’s why Paul, in Romans 7:15 through 24, describes the struggles that he experienced between the old and new natures. We will experience those same struggles in this life until we learn to feed the new Godly nature and starve the old sinful one! (See Ephesians 5:17-32; Colossians 3:5-10).
Lying destroys trust! And we are to love and trust one another as brothers and sisters in Christ!
• “Therefore comfort one another with these words.” (I Thessalonians 4:18). The Greek word for comfort is παρακαλέω (pronounced par-ak-al-eh’-o), and means, “to call near, that is, invite, invoke (by imploration, hortation or consolation)….” We dealt with this same word in One Anothering – II (see June 21, 2017 blog) where it is translated exhort one another. The Holy Spirit is called παράκλητος in John 14:16 (pronounced par-ak’-lay-tos), and meaning “An intercessor, consoler….” The word is translated advocate (I John 2:1) or comforter (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7). Par-ak’-lay-tos (Comforter) is the noun from which the verb par-ak-al-eh’-o (comfort) comes. As the Holy Spirit is beside us (within us) to comfort us, so are we to comfort one another !
The problem in the Thessalonian church was that dear ones in Christ had passed away, and their remaining Christian loved ones were believing they would never see them again! So Paul wrote in I Thessalonians 4:14 through 17 (Contemporary English Version) that there will be a coming event – the Rapture…
…when God brings Jesus back again, He will bring with Him all who had
faith in Jesus before they died. Our Lord Jesus told us that when He comes,
we won’t go up to meet Him ahead of His followers who have already died.
With a loud command and with the shout of the chief angel and a blast of
God’s trumpet, the Lord will return from heaven. Then those who had faith
in Christ before they died will be raised to life. Next, all of us who are still
alive will be taken up into the clouds together with them to meet the Lord
in the sky. From that time on we will all be with the Lord forever.
So those still living were “…not to sorrow as others who have no hope…” (I Thessalonians 4:13). But instead they were to “…comfort one another with these words.” (I Thessalonians 4:18). Let us be about the business of standing alongside of one another to exhort, comfort, encourage, and console!