Solitary Christian Syndrome: It’s Causes and Cure

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11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12  to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16  from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love. (Ephesians 4:11-16)
One of the saddest things in the modern version of the church (which I do not say is how the church should be) is the solitary Christian syndrome.
Although, as in the Scripture passage above, it is seen that the illustration the apostle Paul uses of the human anatomy is to show connection of each born again spirit, one to another, each of which finds their full supply from the Head, our Lord Jesus Christ, very often, in today’s version of the Christian church, we are left with members which are cut off from that flow by the heartbreaking reality of the other members indeed saying, implicitly or explicitly, or both, “you are not a hand, foot, mouth, etc… I have no need of you,” which in turn will very often lead to the member of Christ’s body thinking they are not a part of that body (1 Corinthians 12:12-27).
To say this syndrome is pandemic in most of today’s churches is a gross misrepresentation of the fact of it; an understatement of the strongest kind.
We can blame the seeker-sensitive movement, Pelagianism, semi-Pelagianism, the health-wealth gospel, the social gospel, or whatever, but the truth of the matter is that, though all of these have their respective hands in the pie of this sorrowful condition among the body of Christ, it goes deeper than that.
This fact is born out by individual believers feeling isolated from fellowship in even the several Reformed churches (and to say “these things ought not to be” is again a gross understatement).
Why is this so rampant among even those churches which hold to true Christian doctrine?
It is because of all the things mentioned above, coupled with a good dose of Scriptural ignorance, plus the appetites of the flesh (not in gross form, but in thoughts and attitudes and demeanor towards fellow believers).
Sorrowfully, many things are looked at according to that which was normativebefore conversion, among the body of Christ, even in churches that are orthodox in doctrine (although obviously not in orthopraxy). Things learned in the world, personal traits acquired by one’s experience in interaction with non-Christian society, are used as illustrations of how one is to exercise their spiritual gifts and discharge their ordained offices, with the result that Scripture is not the norm or the supply for that faith which is to be based only in Scripture, and common sense has taken the place of the Spirit of God implementing the vital truths of Scripture in renewing the mind that the fruits of the Spirit may reproduce in us the new man created in God’s image after true righteousness and holiness.
Where pragmatism takes the place of God’s doctrine, at that point, even in the most doctrinally sound assemblies, there will be resultant schisms and consequential fleshly fruits, all of which, in turn, break the realized reality of our having fellowship with one another by walking in the light as He is in the light. Members will thus be isolated and ignored, to the detriment of the body as a whole, and the testimony of Christ among both the body and in the world; in fact, the world simply sees itself in these things, glossed over with religious language and behaviors.
While realizing that God providentially provided us with that which we, while yet unconverted, utilized to function in the world and non-Christian society, be it at the work place, at home, or at play, it is a terrible mistake to take such unredeemed qualities of fleshly personality development and make them normative in dealing with and interacting with one another, for to do so simply yields that upon which the judgment of God is upon and coming, being of the flesh, not of faith (John 3:18-20; Colossians 3:5-9; James 4:1-3).
On the other hand, realizing that these things were providentially given, and that we must “put to death our members which are upon the earth,” we can redeem these traits as good stewards of that grace which has been given to us; the danger, and disaster, lies in looking to and using these fleshly traits as we did before having been born again.
Let each of us examine ourselves, looking to the formation of that new personality which is of the new man which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator; that is, being conformed to the image of Christ our Lord, and put off the old man, that is, those character traits we esteem as a part of our natural growth as if they were on a par with those traits which are of Christ our Lord, by His Spirit (Colossians 3:12-15; Galatians 5:22-26).
There is always healing in the body of Christ, if we do not attempt to make that which is of the natural man and the world our guidelines, but bring such captive to the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ by His Spirit of holiness applying His Scriptural truths to our lives, that we may indeed be supplied by the Head so that each part works properly with that which it is supplied unto the edification of the body, in maturity, building itself up in love.
We are Christ’s body on earth, now; let us live according to those truths of His communicable attributes, in love, to the glory of God.

Christlikeness in Humility – A Good Sermon On These Things

SDG – Bill

About lalvin1517

I'm married with two children and pastor McCall Baptist Church in McCall, Idaho.
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