This week in our Bible study we continued our fellowship on the seven aspects of the church in Ephesians with the aspect of the household of God. Last week it was very good to see that the church is first the dwelling place of God. For the church to be the dwelling place of God emphasizes the truth that the church is where God dwells, where God lives. However, to say that the church is the household of God implies that we are not only where God dwells but that we are also the members of His household, His family. Ephesians 2:19 says:
“So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God…”
To be in the household of God means that we are a part of God’s family. As such we have the same life as God. He is our Father and we are His children. Furthermore, I liked the illustration someone brought out, that to say that were are in the household means that we are living a communal life together. To be a family member implies a life relationship shared with other members. However, a family member does not have to live in the same house as you. They can live across the globe and still be your family. To be a members of a household, on the other hand, requires the members to live together in the same house.
Therefore, we as the household of God, the church, not only share the same divine life, but we also share a communal living in the house of God. Being in this house means we have to learn how to conduct ourselves with the other members. A verse that really developed this was 1 Timothy 3:15, which says,
“But if I delay, I write that you may know how one ought to conduct himself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God…”
Here it is clearly brought out that the church is the house of God. But the other crucial point brought out in this verse regards the way we ought to conduct ourselves in this house. The question then arises, what then is the way to conduct ourselves as members of God’s household? If we look at other portions of the Word we find that the main way to conduct ourselves in God’s house is to love the other members. John 13:34 says:
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”
Many of us are probably familiar with this passage but I really appreciated seeing it in the context of the household of God and in our relation to the other members of this house. We need to love all the members. And we need to love them even as God loves us. In ourselves it is impossible to love in the way that God loves. However, God is not setting an unreachable standard, but is saying that our love for each other should not be our own but should be His. For this we must contact God to receive and enjoy His love first. Then when His love fills us we can love others with the very love that God loved us with. Praise the Lord that we are in the church, and are members of the household of God!