For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many. Б The first meaning that Catholics attach to the expression \”Body of Christ\” is the Catholic Church. The
quotes with approval, as \”summing up the faith of the holy doctors and the good sense of the believer\”, the reply of Saint to her judges: \”About Jesus Christ and the Church, I simply know they\’re just one thing, and we shouldn\’t complicate the matter. \” In the same passage, it also quotes : \”Let us rejoice then and give thanks that we have become not only Christians, but Christ himself. Do you understand and grasp, brethren, God\’s grace toward us? Marvel and rejoice: we have become Christ. For if he is the head, we are the members; he and we together are the whole man. the fullness of Christ then is the head and the members. But what does \’head and members\’ mean? Christ and the Church. \” In light of all this, the Catholic Church calls itself the \”universal sacrament of salvation\” for the whole world, as it dispenses the sacraments, which give the grace of Christ himself to the recipient.
Saint spoke of this unity of Christians with Christ, referred to in the New Testament also in images such as that of the vine and the branches, in terms of a single body that has Christ as its head in, and, and. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, \”the comparison of the Church with the body casts light on the intimate bond between Christ and his Church. Not only is she gathered around him; she is united in him, in his body. Three aspects of the Church as the Body of Christ are to be more specifically noted: the unity of all her members with each other as a result of their union with Christ; Christ as head of the Body; and the Church as bride of Christ. \” The Catechism spells out the significance of each of these three aspects. To distinguish the Body of Christ in this sense from his physical body, the term \”Mystical Body of Christ\” is often used. This term was used as the first words, and so as the title, of the of. In that document, Pope Pius XII in 1943 states, \”the mystical Body of Christ. is the Catholic Church. \” But in 1964 the Catholic bishops gathered at the, while acknowledging that Бfull incorporationБ in the Church required union with the, described various degrees of being БconjoinedБ or БrelatedБ to the Church including all persons of good will, which was not something new.
Following this understanding, coined the term Бanonymous ChristiansБ. The Orthodox see the description of the Church ( ) as the \”Body of Christ\” as being inextricably connected to. According to St. (c. 35Б107), the unity of the Church is expressed in Eucharistic terms. Just as there are many offerings made throughout the world on any given day, and yet all partake of one and the same Body of Christ, so the Church, though existing in many separate localities, is only one. In modern teachings, the \”Body of Christ\” is used by other to collectively describe believers in, as opposed to only those who are members of the Catholic Church. In this sense, Christians are members of the universal body of Christ not because of identification with the institution of the Church, but through identification with Christ directly through faith. This theology is based on several passages in the, including, and, and. is seen as the \”head\” of the body, which is the church, while the \”members\” of the body are seen as members of the. In this way, Protestantism defines the \”Body of Christ\” in a much broader way than does the Catholic Church. This has allowed for a broad base within Christianity to call themselves part of the \”Body of Christ. \” What does it mean that the church is the body of Christ?
The concept of the \”body of Christ\” is often used in the New Testament to refer to the church. The exact phrase \”body of Christ\” is used three times. First Corinthians 10:16 states, \”The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? \” Here, the phrase is used in reference to Christ\’s actual body that is remembered in communion. First Corinthians 12:21-31 speaks of each member of the church serving as individual parts of the body of Christ, symbolically sharing that some are like an ear, or some are like an eye. All of the parts of the body are important for the church to function in a healthy manner. First Corinthians 12:24-26 says, \”But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. \” The church is a body in the sense that it is united and one part impacts all of the others. When one part hurts, the rest of the body feels the hurt. When one part of the body rejoices, the entire body can rejoice. First Corinthians 12:27 again affirms, \”Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. \” Each Christian serves as one part of Christ\’s body.
We need one another, work together with one another, and impact one another through our actions. Ephesians 4:11-12 teaches, \”And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ. \” The church\’s leaders exist to help strengthen the members of the church, developing them to full maturity that glorifies the Lord. Later, this same chapter shares, \”Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 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 4:15-16). Christ is described as the head of the body (the church). He holds the body together. When the members of the body work together properly, love is expressed. In Ephesians 1:22-23, Paul also mentions the church as Christ\’s body, sharing, \”And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. \” Again, the emphasis is on Christ as the head of the church. Related Truth: